Crick Wins in Battersea

Jane Ellison won the Conservative Open Primary in Battersea on the third recount. It was obviously close and it has to be said that effectively the most left-wing candidate was selected to represent the Conservatives by a small margin of votes swung by non-Conservatives. The BBC’s Michael Crick is reported to have voted for her.

The Open Primary idea is a good one, but letting your enemies select your candidate seems silly. In the U.S. you at least have to be registered with the party to vote in their primary. When Jane Ellison stood in the General Election in Pendle in May 2005 she achieved an against the trend swing to the LibDems of +9.4% and away from the Conservatives of -2.1% on what was not a good night for Labour. Fortunately for Jane the seat is a certain gain for the Tories at the next election.

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John Curtice, professor of politics at Strathclyde University, says….

“The UKIP vote is going to the Tories. That’s the story of the first week of the campaign.”

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