Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Reed Refuses to Run Properly for Fear of Losing

Labour’s newly selected by-election candidate for Croydon North is clearly not very confident about his victory chances. Lambeth Council Leader Steve Reed has announced that he will not resign his position unless he wins the nearby seat. The hard-working people of Lambeth will be paying for Reed to campaign for the Labour Party rather than representing them.

Then again, anyone who has ever come across Steve and his work will know that campaigning for Labour rather than representing the people has always been his mantra – not least with his poster campaign against government cuts that was paid for at the expense of other local services. Facile largire de alieno…

Another Tory Admits UKIP Cost Them Election

The Tories are always denying that UKIP are a threat, but once again the cat has been let out of the bag. Over in Maidenhead they have suffered an embarrassing council by-election defeat at the hands of their LibDem counterparts. Simon Werner beat his blue opponent Catherine Hollingsworth by a grand total of eight votes, as the UKIP candidate took dozens of votes away from the Tories.  Council leader David Burbage in no doubt as to who is to blame:

“It is unfortunate that, largely thanks to UKIP, the residents of Pinkneys Green have missed out from electing a very effective councillor in Catherine Hollingsworth. The last thing that people who voted UKIP would have wanted would be a boost to the pro-EU Lib Dems.” 

Fast forward to 2015 and we could be seeing a similar thing on a much larger scale…

Monday, November 5, 2012

Labour Corby Candidate’s Balls-Up

Smiles all round in Corby as Ed Balls stepped out into the sun to support Labour candidate Andy Sawford this morning. The slightly forced expression on the shadow chancellor’s face got Guido thinking: it turns out that back in 2009 Sawford wrote a damning article for the Guardian accusing the government of presiding over a shambolic response to the infamous Baby P case. The minister in question was then Education Secretary Ed Balls.

Take the government’s botched response to the Baby P case, which has made matters worse and put more children at risk. While the government was throwing red meat to the tabloids, and contributing to the hounding of social workers, it has only served to undermine an incredibly important profession.”

All neatly forgotten today. They’ll make a politician out of him yet…

Friday, October 12, 2012

Watson’s Corby Email Dirty Tricks

When it was announced that Brownite boot-boys Tom Watson and Ian Austin would be the campaign managers for Labour’s by-election in Corby you knew it would not take long to get dirty. Despite being way ahead in the polls and likely to take the seat, it seems dishonesty is the order of the day on the ground. The campaign built for Andy Sawford – the son of a Labour MP turned lobbyist – focusses on an apparent threat to the local Kettering Hospital. Depending on which Labour leaflet you read (kindly paid for by Unison) the threat to local jobs in the area is either in the hundreds of the thousands.The problem is it is not true…

Any changes to South East Midlands NHS are overseen by clinicians through the Healthier Together program, who are looking at two options for restructuring health provision in the area. While Sawford cries about “major cuts to A&E, maternity, acute and children’s services at TWO of the five hospitals,” the local NHS explain what is actually happening: “Services such as A&E, maternity and outpatients would remain on all five sites under both options.” Sawford’s petition to save the hospital is nothing more than email and postcode harvesting. 

UPDATE MONDAY: As Guido reported in the Daily Star Sunday yesterday, Sawford is in a right muddle about health:

HONESTY has gone out of the window in the Corby by-election to find a replacement MP after Louise Mensch quit. Labour’s candidate Andy Sawford, whose dad used to be an MP, is basing his campaign on saving the local hospital. This is despite the NHS board which runs it confirming there is no threat to it. The former lobbyist has not always been such a vocal defender of the health service, though. Back in 2009 he criticised plans to “ring-fence” the NHS budget from cuts, correctly claiming it only “postponed the pain” and that it “created an uneven playing field in local public service delivery”. You won’t see that on Sawford’s election leaflets.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Meet the New Boss, Same as the Old Boss

If Grant Shapps’ first press release is anything to go by, not much has changed in the Party Chairman’s office over at CCHQ. Tory spinners are keen to point out that he has been kicking some arse in his first few days. Unhappy with the thumb-twiddling Corby campaign that he has inherited, the new Chairman has been sending out overly optimistic memos to all approved candidates compelling them to come and meet him on the front-line this weekend. “He’s not giving them much of a choice, it’s a clear sign of a new regime at CCHQ.” Same old lines being pumped out though…

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Sour Grapes For Corby Tories
Potential Candidate Not Posh Enough

Talking of Corby, Guido is picking up growing disquiet among local Tories – and not just because they are expecting a kicking in November. Corby Conservative council leader David Sims went rogue last week, slamming both Louise Mensch and the Tory campaign in his constituency:

“I will give her my full support but it’s going to be difficult. We can expect a protest against Louise, as we have to admit that she wasn’t seen as a great MP. There will also be a protest against the Government and, while the other parties have been campaigning, we have been twiddling our thumbs.”

It turns out Sims has more than enough reason to be angry. Guido hears that he was specifically asked to put himself forward for the prospective candidate shortlist by CCHQ as someone who was in-touch, well-respected and local, only for party bigwigs to tell him in no uncertain terms that he was no longer welcome. A source on the ground whispers to Guido that Sims was told that the Tory hierarchy wanted someone who could ‘identify with the Tory faithful from East Northamptonshire’. In other words the former bin-man was not posh enough…

Wind of Change in Corby

Writing in today’s Speccie James Delingpole has confirmed that he will run in Corby after all. Not for UKIP as previously touted, but as an anti-wind farm candidate:

“The stench from the wind industry and its many leech-like hangers-on is overpowering and it’s a disgrace that so few people are speaking up for the thousands of victims affected by it. But I am. I hereby announce my intention to stand in the Corby by-election as the anti-wind farm candidate. Not in my back yard. And not in yours either!”

5% to keep your deposit…

UPDATE:

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Bookies Slash Odds on Tory Corby Win With Strauss

Ladbrokes are offering 50/1 that Strauss steps up to the crease and is made the Tory candidate for Corby, with the former England captain 16/1 to beat Andy Sawford and win the seat. A Ladbrokes spokesman said: “If the Tories send Strauss into bat in Corby their odds of securing the seat will tumble“. Only KP running for the LibDems could stop him…

UPDATE: The punters are piling their cash on Strauss for Corby and he is now 25/1 to be the Tory candidate.

UPDATE II: Odds have been slashed again – now 16/1.

Corby Tories Back Strauss in Local Media

The local press in Corby like the idea of Andrew Strauss knocking Labour’s Andy Sawford for six, as does one local Conservative councillor they have quoted:

‘Corby borough councillor Rob McKellar said: “I couldn’t rule out voting for Andrew Strauss as a Conservative candidate if the rumours were to be true. I would like our next MP to be somebody who lives in the constituency and who has Corby and East Northamptonshire at heart.

But that is not to say a high-profile candidate couldn’t achieve this, while raising the profile of the area at the same time.”’

Howzat?

Andrew Strauss Could Stump Labour in Corby

Many have been wondering why England captain Andrew Strauss has quit international cricket. While it’s probably has more to do with his bad couple of years at the crease and major dramas in the dressing room, it’s well known that Andrew is a Tory and rumoured that he has an interest in moving into politics. He raised £25,000 for the party at a 2011 fundraiser…

With the Tories struggling to find a candidate for the Corby by-election, perhaps it’s time for Strauss to serve again.

Selection meeting is this Friday, could he rise from the Corby ashes?

UPDATE: Strauss has retired not only from international cricket, but from Middlesex too. Coincidently Corby the tourism website says “the area has a long cricketing tradition.”

UPDATE II: Others are circling:


Seen Elsewhere

Comply or Die at Grauniad | MediaGuido
Labour Beats UKIP in South Yorkshire | LabourList
Mock the Week’s Weak Comedy | Nigel Farage
Can Jim Murphy Save Scottish Labour? | Guardian
There is Still Appetite for the Westminster Lunch | Jon Craig
Labour Turn Their Backs on Jewish Community | Dan Hodges
Chivalry is Not Dead | Laura Perrins
Jonathan Jones is a Tw*t | Iain Dale
Second Scotland Poll Suggests Labour Wipeout | Times
Paedo Probe Boss Urged to Quit | Sun
Keynesian Tories Won’t Eliminate Deficit | Tim Montgomerie


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