Friday, November 25, 2011

UKIP Steal Tory Candidate and Helmer’s Last CCHQ Battle

After Guido’s scoop this morning about CCHQ’s tactful start to the upcoming Heathrow By-Election, all sorts of other divisions have been emerging today. Many are asking what happened to the Tory love-in with open primaries, or even a basic selection meeting. The Commentator reports further embarrassment for Dave:  one former approved candidate did get a look in for selection, by UKIP:

 “…the UKIP candidate, highly likely to steal more than the 992 conservative votes that Jerry Shadbolt took in 2010, is none other than former Tory candidate for Edmonton, Andrew Charalambous. The businessman and barrister is also the founder of ‘Surya’, the world’s first eco-nightclub which hosted the official ‘Conservative Future’ party in November 2010. Activists may be confused as to whether to campaign for Cameron, who delivered them government, or for Charalambous, who delivered them… booze.”

With the Tories in a strong second place in the seat, the form set by the Oldham by-election should mean that we will be seeing the LibDems taking a sham role in this race. With the backdrop to this election, we could easily see UKIP coming third.

Talking of Euro-sceptics. Word reaches Guido from his Brusselois co-conspirator that all is not well with the outgoing Roger Helmer MEP. Normally the rules state that whoever is the next down the party list, automatically replaces a resigning MEP. However not everyone in CCHQ is enamoured with the equally Euro-sceptic replacement Rupert Matthews. He is a little eccentric and likes UFOs, but that can hardly render you unfit for selection when Norman Baker is in the government.

Some obscure quirk of the party constitution is being cited as a way of over-ruling the convention, but Helmer is having none of it. He has declared that unless Matthews is anointed his successor he won’t be resigning after all…

Turbulent Tory Take-Off at Heathrow By-Election

As the Tories announce their candidate for the upcoming Heathrow Airport by-election, there was some rather loud grumbling in the ranks last night. CCHQ have gone with the seat’s two-time general election veteran Mark Bowen. He’s the head of the Tory group on Hounslow Council and is looking to over turn the late Alan Keen’s 4,658 majority.

Given that the local press declared Bowen had “virtually accepted defeat” before polling day in May 2010, many boys and girls on the CCHQ approved list feel there should have been some semblance of an open contest, but it was all quiet from HQ. So imagine how well this email was received, hot from the Candidates Office, hours before last night’s announcement was made:

“I am expecting every candidate on the Approved List to rise to the challenge and take part in the campaign and polling day. If you are unable to visit Feltham & Heston, you can help out in other ways by joining our call centre in Millbank or at CCHQ Midlands based in Coleshill.

I am enclosing your Campaign Support Record Sheet. Therefore it is vitally important to print a copy and take it with you whenever you go to Feltham & Heston. This sheet will be signed by one of our Sector Agents each time you go. At the end of the campaign the completed sheet should be returned to the Candidates Department at CCHQ”

It’s not the request that is causing feathers to be spat, rather the patronising handholding and school trip worksheets, handed out in silence about how the decision was being made. So unity and vigour for December 15. It’s going to be a frosty winter on the stump..

Friday, July 1, 2011

LibDems Obliterated in Inverclyde By-Election
Lose Deposit With Just 2% of the Vote

The SNP failed to pull off another Glasgow style by-election coup, although they did manage to slash Labour’s majority from 14,416 to 5,578. The Tories came in third, however with real story of the night was the LibDems shocking 2%, managing to poll just 627 votes.

The low turnout cannot be blamed given they had 5,007 in May 2010 it was 45%, healthy for a by-election. The Scottish LibDems are smarting this morning and not doing very much to hide their contempt for Clegg. Remember when the LibDems by-election machine was feared across the land? Cowley Street can’t be a fun place to be this morning…

Friday, June 10, 2011

CCHQ Prepares for Bridgen By-Election

A Millbank co-conspirator says…

“Just seen MERLIN (Election Software) reports ran summarising the seat left on a printer. Such an act of faith….”

Oh dear…

Friday, March 4, 2011

The Barnsley Bombshell

Dan Jarvis is heading to Westminster as Labour’s second MP to have served in the army.  His new job was guaranteed from the moment he was selected, but the race behind him has left some stunned faces this morning. The total meltdown of the LibDems in May is well on course with Clegg left in a humiliating 6th place behind an indy and the BNP. And down £500.

UKIP sources were pleasantly surprised when Guido spoke to them last night, but there is no denying in the light of day that coming second is a major moment for them. Many a Tory ChihuahuaConservatives In their Heads, Ukip AHeart, will be heartened by this result, they were hardly expected to get excited by the utterly uninspiring Tory candidate. It’s fascinating to see the Labour Eurosceptic vote is growing too. According to pollsters Survation, who predicted the LibDem collapse and UKIP rise, 29% of UKIPs growth came from Labour voters switching:


Issues like votes for prisoners seem to be playing well for UKIP, driving new recruits to their cause. More decrees from Europe must be highlighted and pushed. It’s clearly playing well.

While it is embarrassing for a sitting PM to be beaten by a minor party, made up of many voters he feels should be supporting him, there will be cheers from the blues lower down the ladder with this result.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Labour Hold Oldham & Saddleworth with Increased Majority

The end result was Labour 14,718 (42%), LibDem 11,160 (31.9%), Con 4,481 (12.8%), UKIP 2,543 (5.6%), BNP 1560 (4.5%). The swing from LibDems to Labour was 4.9%, turnout was a reasonable 48%. The LibDem vote was steady, up fractionally on the general election, the Conservative vote halved, UKIP’s vote was up 40% on the general election and the BNP’s vote was down 22%.

Labour will say they did well, so they should in this seat, Clegg will point to the increased LibDem share of the vote and say they didn’t do bad. The Tories will feign disappointment. UKIP demonstrates once again that Tories have a place to go if they can’t stomach the coalition…

UPDATE: Labour are spinning that this is a clear vindication that the economic policies of the coalition are wrong. Not quite. If you add the Conservative and Liberal numbers together, more people are in favour of the coalition. A tired and tetchy Sayeeda Warsi is blaming the Tory-right for moaning. However, given the order came from above her head to move over for the LibDems, her digs at the Tory right, who she knows hate her, look as opportunistic as they do absurd.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Good Morning, It’s Polling Day

As the Old and Sad voters head to the polls this morning, Labour seem certain that they are heading for win. Buoyed by the ICM and Populus poll boosts, Newsnight all but declared them victors last night, excitedly preparing their “dark day for the Coalition” lines. Smarkets punters say Labour are going to take it too…

Could the celebrations be a little premature though? The Survation poll showed there was still a huge amount of undecided voters. The fieldwork for all three polls showed there was already a shift from Conservatives to the LibDems, and given the coverage the “it’s a two horse race” line has got since Sunday, it’s possible that even more Tories might decide to do what Dave wants them to do and back the LibDem.  Whether or not this has enough of an impact to sway it, the result is certainly going to be closer than the 17% lead suggested by some pollsters…

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Nick Clegg Kicked My Baby

Or did he? According to BBC North, Clegg accidentally kicked a small child in a push chair on a walkabout in Oldham yesterday. He then tried to blame a less than impressed Michael Crick who was doing his usual two-paces-behind-asking-awkward-questions trick.

However, as PoliticsHome picked up, the father of the alleged victim has rushed to tweet Nick’s innocence, denying it happened. Guido isn’t so sure though, especially when you look at the footage from fourteen minutes here. Of all things that could go wrong on the stump, injuring small children is very high up the list.

There’s definitely some sort of contact.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

+ + + Sitting MP Eric Illsley Pleads Guilty + + +

Sitting Labour MP Eric Illsley has pleaded guilty to three counts of fraud. He was already expelled by Labour and was technically an independent. The LibDems and Tories are tied in his Barnsley constituency for second place, by six votes:

  1. Labour: 17487 (47.26%)
  2. Liberal Democrat: 6394 (17.28%)
  3. Conservative: 6388 (17.26%)

How many more by-elections will there be this year….

UPDATE: PA reports:

“His barrister William Coker QC said his client admitted wrongly claiming a revised sum of about £14,500. The claims were made for council tax, telephone usage, service charges and maintenance, and insurance and repairs at his second home in Renfrew Road, Kennington, south London. In a five-minute hearing, the disgraced MP sat in the dock rubbing his face and frowning. He spoke only to confirm his pleas, saying ‘guilty’ to the three charges.”

After months of denial, is conviction politician Illsley now eyeing up a similar reduction in sentence granted to David Chaytor on Friday?

UPDATE II: Sentencing in around a month.

Rising Tory Anger at Oldham Shambles

Anyone who thinks the Tories are actually running a proper campaign in Oldham might want to take a look at the briefing note that was handed to volunteers when they arrived in the constituency just yesterday:

No wonder Dave could barely remember his name. If the Tories come second after such a half-hearted campaign, there are going to be serious questions asked of their leader’s judgement, specifically why he did not throw down the gauntlet and properly contest the seat. Dave has probably done enough to cover his back by visiting and there is a visible campaign going on, but it’s nothing like the by-election slogs, of varying success, when the Tories were in opposition. Instead they are left moaning to Guido about a distinct lack of “money, leaflets, polling and staff”.


Seen Elsewhere

Cocaine Conservatives | Standard
Jezza Browne Responds to LibDem Haters | LibDem Voice
Why Britain Needs to Leave the EU | Douglas Carswell
Literally No One is Watching London Live | MediaGuido
Who Tells Ed When He’s Wrong? | Speccie
Hands Off Our Cojones, Mr Clegg | Laura Perrins
London Live Averaging Just 2,400 Viewers | Forbes
Ed’s Constitutional Failure | ConHome
UKIP Poster Girl’s Naked Photos | Sun
Miliband’s Radical Old Labour Agenda | Fraser Nelson
Meet Team Miliband | Dan Hodges


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A confused Nick Griffin says Nigel Farage is a shill for the City, forgetting that City banks want to stay in the EU:

“Farage is a snake oil salesman, but a very good one. His supposed anti-immigration stance is all smoke and mirrors, as is his carefully cultivated image as a ‘man of the people’. The truth is that UKIP is a pro-immigration party that exists to lobby for the interests of the City of London.”



Nick Clegg says:

Do you want lies with that?


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