Curly's Corner Shop, the blog!

South Shields premier political blog

We were not to blame – STIA (Stupid Indy Asses)

with 4 comments

It was the voters fault for turning out to err……vote.

Cllr. Ahmed Khan authoring the websites of the South Tyneside Independent Alliance is claiming that the reason for their failure to hang on to the only seat that they defended on May 6th (Westoe ward, South Shields) was that voter turn out was up and voters cast their votes according to the national mood.

Hmm……..does this argument hold water?

Turnout was up hugely, he is correct there, across the wards in South Tyneside it varied between 50% in Biddick and All Saints and 73% in Cleadon Village and East Boldon. However, the assertion that people voted according to party lines was absolute arrant nonsense in the South Tyneside Council Elections.

Nationally, the Labour Party suffered a net loss of 91 MPs in the general election, they were 2 million votes behind the Conservatives, and a vote share of only 29% was a sheer embarrassment. Compared to their results locally where they made net gains of five council seats, their lowest share of the vote was 37% in West Park and the highest was 65% in Boldon Colliery! It just doesn’t look like the national trend was followed in these parts as far as Labour were concerned, heck they nearly pinched Cleadon Village and East Boldon from the Tories!

In the general election Karen Allen for the Conservatives found nearly 8000 votes in the South Shields constituency, 21.6% of the vote and a 6.4% swing from Labour to Conservative. Did the same vote share and swing translate into the council election? Certainly not, less than 5000 people voted for Conservative council candidates in South Shields and the predominant swing was towards Labour from all other parties.

Gordon Brown has accepted personal responsibility for the failure of Labour to hang on to office nationally, there have been NO complaints from the Lib-Dems in South Tyneside for the loss of their seat in Hebburn, there have been NO complaints from the Progressives (at least publicly) for the loss of Ken Hickman’s seat in West Park, South Shields, there have been NO complaints from the other parties who saw their vote crumble last Thursday. They have all accepted that the public have spoken, and spoken with two voices, there was a clear swing from Labour to Conservative in the general election and clearly a different swing towards Labour in the local election.

Perhaps Cllr. Khan imagined that his man in Beacon and Bents would just have it easy and get a bye (and the rumour is that Mr. Hodgson struggled to get a word in edgeways on the doorsteps as Ahmed bellowed on his behalf), perhaps he thought that Mr. McVay would be a natural choice in Westoe, and that Ms. Speirs would find West Park a stroll in the proverbial, and that Mr. Allsop would just slide under the tables trounce Labour in Horsely Hill. How deluded could one get?

Sadly for those of us who believe in real democracy, the Labour Party will continue to run the borough with the support of a minority of people rather than the majority.

Unpalatable as it is, the figures speak for themselves, in nine of the wards Labour got more than 50% of the votes and comfortably took the lions share in eight of the other nine. This was certainly NOT a reflection of national trends! To suggest that because there is a general election on that we are all stupid enough to vote like donkeys is absolute bollocks beyond belief!

We clearly can think and vote in two distinctly separate ways in two distinctly separate elections held at the same time, yeah it hurts when another party wins handsomely, but that’s democracy, one learns to accept it (unless you are a supporter of the Branley/ Khan party where democracy has a somewhat different definition) .

Cllr. Khan should have some humility and take defeat on the chin, either that or he should enrol himself in some night classes and learn to do some maths!

More here, and a little extra on democracy as seen by the STIA (Stupid Indy Asses)

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4 Responses

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  1. could not agree more Curly(hence my comment on the Indies web site earlier today)
    The fact is in most wards the Independents actual vote went down considerably since 2008 despite a higher turn out


    May 17, 2010 at 7:28 pm

  2. I do agree with some of the things your saying curly.
    Cllr Khan has his opinion just like you and its not his or your fault you`s dont agree, Thats life.
    All the candidates can do now is brush themselves down and keep on trying for next time if that is what the candidate wants to do.


    May 17, 2010 at 7:51 pm

  3. Maybe the Independant Alliance leaflets which consisted of personal attacks on opponents were a bad move. Certainly the voters in Biddick Hall reacted to the unpleasantness by turning away from the Alliance and increasing the Labour majority.


    May 18, 2010 at 9:40 pm

  4. Good analysis Curly & well spoken on what democracy is all about. I’ll have to buy you a pint in the snooker club on Friday!


    May 20, 2010 at 5:49 pm

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