Saturday, May 08, 2010


This was the election result for the little regarded backwater of England
Conservative: 297 (+92)
Labour: 191 (-87)
LibDem: 43 (-4)Green: 1 (+1)

If English laws are speedily introduced , and there can be no possible objection , then New Labour cannot win here. Furthmore as this measure is supposed to provide an equality I am not sure why we should not choose our own voting procedures


Auntie Flo' said...

Hi newms, totally agree with you. We in England must have our independence, it's the only way we will ever again recover our democratic rights, self determination and civil liberties, enjoy full enfranchisement, escape the bonds of foreign subsidy and burst the pernicious chains of our enslavement to Scotland.

Let's go for it!

I'm feeling oddly under occupied now the election is all but over. This time on Thursday, I was totally knackered from chasing around canvassing all day with Rob, our then PCC, my legs and face numb from our final 4 hours of doing the all smiling, all dancing traffic cop on the freezing M11 junction, as part of Rob's inspired smiling commuter wave.

Did you see the brilliant result Rob Halfon achieved in Harlow? We sacked our government minister MP, the dicatorial Bill Rammell, and elected Rob with a magnificent majority.


Bill Quango MP said...

That was a good result AF.
Predicted in print on our blog.
But Cruddas stayed while Julia Goldsworthy lost. Quite unbelievable really.

Auntie Flo' said...

Bill Quango: My own view is that th4e criteria for success in the election basically boiled down to how much work candidates and supporters had done to win back lost trust among the electorate. Not just flash in the pan campaigning during the election period, but long term graft in their constituency.

Rob Halfon has worked his heart out for Harlow for 10 years, in particular during the last few years. Isn't Cruddas known to be hard working? I can't speak for Goldsworthy, but my experience of the Lib Dems, having been a life long Liberal until a few years ago, is that far too many of them are the laid back bods in our society. Viz, one of our local Lib Dems thought it was enough to get on her 'carbon friendly' tricycle and peddle through a shopping area to win votes. She never got off the bl**dy thing to speak to anyone!

Lib Dems, not to be confused with old Liberals like me, are too often the spoiled and apathetic offspring of successful parents, people who go into safe jobs for life in the public sector because they lack the drive to do anything else, the drive to take risks tht their parents had. Everything's always fallen into their laps courtesy of indulgent parents and they seem to believe that society should continue mum and dad's largess.

To prove my point, pictures from the voting reform rally that lobbied Clegg in London: #takeitback #ge2010

Auntie Flo' said...

Look how middle class those 'fair votes' protestors are. Healthy scrubbed faces, well shod heels, sensible, good quality M&S raincoats. Not a scuffed shoe or working class face among them.

These are the ones who let Nick Clegg down. They brushed aside millions of hard working voters by defining themselves as the anti-politics, youth remedy to the two old parties - and old people? Foolishly believing their vacuous, anti-oldie and anti-status quo critiques sufficient, they didn't do the work in their constituencies, simply pedalled along, believing their sense of outraged, public sector entitlement would see them through. But in the end, instead of seeing them through, it led the working class masses to see right through them: to their greedy and lazy little souls. They even failed to mobilise the youth vote: what naive fools they were to focus on the notoriously perfidious young.

Auntie Flo' said...

Yet didn't Nick Clegg let his supporters down too? This heir to a banking dynasty, an expense fuelled, career politician and former MEP who has never done a hard day's work, never soiled his hands with real graft and, in all probability, never experienced a heartache in his womanising life: he failed to do his essential groundwork.

Clegg took time off of his campaign that it couldn't spare: such as the day's holiday he took with his sons when they returned from being stranded by volcano dust.

The result of Clegg's failure to do his groundwork was that his policies were riddled with unresolved contradictions, seethed with undefined issues and unanswered questions, and groaned with uncosted and unproven assumptions. Hard working people recognised this vacuous centre at the heart of Lib Demia and voted instead for the hardworking and more trustworthy crop of new Conservative, and even Labour, candidates.

Contrast Cleg with Rob Halfon. Rob did his groundwork meticulously. He worked his guts out for Harlow people for 10 years, defining and redefining his position against the acid test of reality. Then, during the election campaign, he worked to a punishing schedule. Rob stood, frozen, numbed and soaked to the skin, getting sprayed with dust and muck on the
M11 junction, holding giant campaign posters for hours every early morning and hours every evening, building relationships and trust with thousands of commuters stuck in slow moving traffic queues.

In between he raced around Harlow, visiting schools, churches, factories, bingo halls, anywhere that people would have him. He worked on endless stalls and outside endless supermarkets, did endless town centre and shopping centre walkabouts, talking to thousands of people: building trust for 16 hours a day every day.

When Rob and I first began doing his M11 commuter wave, a proportion of the commuters would shout obscenities or make crude signs at us. One even threw a bottle at me as he screamed "BNP!", one socialist used my poster for chewing gum spitting target practice. Yet, as the days went on, most of those who'd done this began flashing friendly smiles at us as they stuck their finger/s up. Soon, most of them stopped sticking their fingers up altogether and instead waved as they passed. Some even said "hello, you still here?, or, "Alright, alright, might think about voting for you".

One day, as the rain pelted down on that M11 junction, I put on my - dirty, working class - rain coat and smiled and talked to the commuters from beneath the recesses of my hood. Rob didn't blink or don his coat, he just stood there, smiling and waving, getting drenched to the skin: the commuters loved it and loved Rob for doing it.

Then I realised what we were really doing on that junction: we were paying a humble penance for every politician who had ever let the people down and destroyed their trust. We were going to see the people on their own terms in their own milieu: their cars and traffic queues, where it didn't cost them any of their time. We were reaching so many disaffected ones who never come to political meetings and never read the parties' leaflets and we were giving them a powerful message via real actions, not mealy mouthed spin: that Rob trusts them enough to get up close and let them see him warts and all, cares enough to answer questions, even if it means risking being pelted with bottles and chewing gum. That he cares enough to get to know them in the most adverse circumstances, because he's a bl**dy hard grafter who values the people and recognises that he is their servant, not their master.

It was this hard, honest graft to build the people's trust that won Rob his election and it was the Lib Dems' failure to do this hard, honest graft that cost them their's.

Auntie Flo' said...

One telling point: take a look at the colour of Nick Clegg's skin in the Sky News picture taken at the cenotaph. Clegg's face is lily white: that's a desk palour.

Contrast it with the colour of every other politician and activist you see: they're mahogany.

Ok, Clegg is naturally fair skinned and freckled and does not tan easily, howeer, had he been out campaigning for over a month as all the other politicians and activists have been doing - and as Clegg should have been doing - he would be vivid pink at best, lobster red at worst.

Yet Clegg doesn't even have a flash of pink on his nose. Why? He has not been grafting to the anywhere near the necessary extent.
Little wonder then that Mr Clegg has always looked so fresh and wide awake: that's because this erstwhile MEP has never given himself cause to become exhausted

Newmania said...

Tanks for your cvommets Flo I read them all with inetrest.I am thinkingn about the anti PR movement already

That , I see is the end game of all this

Auntie Flo' said...

PR might be the endgame, on the other hand perhaps we might have to storm the Bastille, aka 10 Downing Street to unclamp Brown's half eaten fingers from the door knocker.

The Times states that just 16,000 votes kept Cameron from a straight majority.

How many of those 16000 were lost to:

postal vote fraud
voter lock outs
ballot paper deficits
Refusal of proxy votes
refusal of bona fide, registrations
loss of last minute lists?

When I went to do a proxy vote for a friend at the last minute, the clerk told me that this proxy vote was not registered: though it was. I was told to contact the electoral office when it was open...the next day! Only because I dug my heels in did the clerk ring an electoral officer to be asked if she'd checked the Last Minute List.

"Last Minute what...?", said the clerk.

When she finally found the last minute list, stuffed among papers at the rear of the registration area, my proxy vote was on it - as were a dozen or others who presumably had been told they were not registered to vote too.

Interesting that the person for whom I did the proxy vote was a former Labour councillor who has switched his support to the Conservatives.

Auntie Flo' said...

"No agreement is the likely and sensible outcome"

(from Liberal Burblings)

May 7th, 2010 | Author: Paul

Nick Clegg has made clear the LibDems’ four priorities for post-election negotiation. I could not hear anything from Cameron about compromise on the deficit reduction programme. There needs to be a cross-party Council for financial stability. I cannot see the Liberal Democrats supporting an immediate hare-brained Osbourne deep cuts programme. The Tories will have to compromise on this. And the all party committee on electoral reform is a joke. Heath first offered it to Thorpe in 1974 and it was rejected. We also went through the ultimately pointless Jenkins commission in the 90s.

The fact that Cameron always mentions his 10% cut in MPs in this context shows he simply doesn’t get electoral reform. It’s a referendum on a properly proportional system or no deal. The all-party committee offer is derisory. – As is the suggestion by Hague that all this needs to be agreed by Sunday evening. It took Rhodri Morgan and colleagues two months to complete a coalition deal in Wales and he ended up having a heart attack in the process, he says.

It’s great that the LibDems are in this position with two suitors offering supposed gifts. But, realistically, the LibDem and Tory policies are poles apart. I can’t see a LD/Con coalition working in a million years. I don’t think it’s been mooted by Cameron for anything other than PR show.

But we should use our negotiating position wisely for the national interest, based on our election manifesto. The suggestion of cabinet seats is an irrelevance, I believe. Vince Cable as Chancellor wouldn’t last a day before he was shot down by Tory backbenchers.

Let’s step back a tad and do the math, as they say stateside.

Auntie Flo' said...

"No agreement is the likely and sensible outcome"

2nd half

"Lewis Baston, writing before the election, wrote:

A more nuanced idea of where the winning post is on election night is therefore 326 for a technical majority, 320 for an effective majority, 310 for a single party government without agreements with other parties, and around 300 for an undisputed, if provisional, right to govern.

The Thirsk and Malton election is on 27th May. Any government will have to get through the Queens Speech debate starting on 25th May. That lasts several days so let’s assume the new MP for that Yorkshire seat will be Tory and can vote on the Queen’s Speech. My full spreadsheet is here.


1. Exclude Speaker and three deputies including even 2:2 split between Tory and Labour

2. Take out 5 Sinn Fein MPs, who don’t attend

3. Exclude 8 DUP, 6 SNP and 3 Plaid Cymru, who are unlikely to vote a government down

That leaves 624 MPs potentially involved in a Queen’s Speech vote. That gives a majority threshold of 313. Tories and LDs would make up 362. Labour and LDs would make up 313, which could be supplemented by 3 SDLP, 1 Alliance and Sylvia Herman, making 316. However, bear in mind that the average death rate of MPs (as exemplified by John Major’s 1992-97 term) is about 4 a year. So, a Lab-LD and others alliance would not last more than about a year or so before the grim reaper or human bolshiness took their toll.

So I wouldn’t put much money on a Lab-LD alliance unless it is packaged as a temporary government to bring in an electoral reform referendum and call an election with a year or two. That doesn’t sound very robust. It would need a lot of selling and a new Labour leader such as Johnson or Miliband.

So the Tory/LD alliance is the only one likely to last more than a year or so.

As I say, a coalition is, in my view, out of the question. It won’t happen. And if it did happen it would only last months. A “confidence and supply” agreement is more likely. But I really can’t see the Tories giving enough concessions to make this anything other than a highly poisoned chalice for the LibDems. Why would we want to be associated with a draconian Osbourne cutting programme just for the easily forgotten credit of saving the markets from meltdown and to get another blithering committee report on voting reform?

So, unless Cameron commits to a referendum on a truly proportional voting system it’s no deal. I very much doubt he will commit to that, without his party imploding, so it’s no deal.

My view is that the LibDems should go vote by vote with the Conservatives making up a minority government. The Commons should be used to thrash out, for example, a Queen’s Speech which commands a majority without the need for agreements. For once, there would be real debate and real use of the amendments procedure, with real votes."

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