Wednesday, July 25, 2007

By-Election Triumphs and Corn Beef Pie

Took a day's holiday to go up to Sedgefield. Left early morning picking up Tommy from Rochdale and Nick from Liverpool.

Called in at Newton Aycliffe first - good to see lots of members busy getting the vote out. It was clear from early on that we were going to win clearly. Then went up to Trimden Labour Club. Sedgefield is a very attractive constituency with Labour-voting villages and town set amongst rolling countryside.
The party in the North East understands the important principle that an army marches on its stomach - and the food for volunteers at Trimden was excellent - especially the corn beef pie - so packed with corn beef it must have been a full cow! Lovely.

When they prized me away from the pie, we went knocking up in Camforth. Again Labour vote solid but a worrying number of young women (in their twenties and thirties) who "never vote".
I don't know if it was because of the Government's need to release petty criminals early but there seemed to be a lot of BNP driving around. It made me laugh when I heard them playing "Jerusalem" on their loud-speakers - it will be in the Internationale! Next.

Had to leave at tea-time to get back to Salford for our constituency meeting but everything under control and good reports coming back from Ealing.
The results are an excellent start to Gordon Brown's Government. Two potentially difficult by-elections successfully and, in the end, quite comfortably negotiated.
Woefully bad for the Tories - "Cameron's" Conservatives were created in West London and they really thought they were going to win at one stage. That crashing sound is wheels coming off the wagon!
Liberal Democrats will be disappointed as they don't appear to have done badly enough to ditch Ming Campbell. That suits us in places like Rochdale, Cambridge and Withington but might not be good in much of the South.

Sedgefield had 2494 BNP votes too many, which needs addressing.

Congratulation to Virendera and Phil and both their campaign teams and all the volunteers who secured their victories. Who's tempted to start betting on a spring General Election (or even October!)

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