General Election 2010: Labour wins comfortably in Lewisham

14.51

Cameron has just offered the Liberal Democrats precisely nothing by way of a deal.

12.37 Update

Our old friend from University, Rushanara Ali, has just won Bethnal Green and Bow with a majority of more than 11,500. We can offer this exclusive insight on the new MP - she is very nice.

11.41 Update

Interesting post on Boris Watch reckons the Mayor may have blown it for Cameron by incurring the wrath of South East London. Mess with us at your peril.

11.18 Update

So, as the dust section on the national parliament, which party should be happiest? There are reasons why each party can be cheerful.

The Tories got the most seats, 2 million more votes than any other parties and appear to have the best chance of forming a new government.

Labour escaped the drubbing many had predicted and still have a chance of retaining some power. Even if Labour lose it, the Tories will have to pass a difficult budget, riddled with compromises and pork for their coalition partners. They could watch from the sidelines as the Tories struggle and Cameron's authority within his own party shrinks even further, hoping that the coalition will collapse so they will get another chance in another 12-18 months, without the burden of Brown as leader.

The Liberal Democrats had their bubble burst, but at least are guaranteed some sort of power for the first time in the party's history. And of course, the case for PR has been made very strongly again.

And while Darren Johnson racked up fewer votes than Green supporters hoped for, they got their first MP in their history - a landmark victory.

UKIP didn't win a seat, but annoyed the hell out of the Tories, almost certainly denying them some key seats. UKIP voters will hope that this will encourage the Tories to move rightwards.

10.52 Update

Goodbye George Galloway. Poplar and Limehouse returns a Labour MP. We're neutral, but we're not that neutral - the man is a monster.

09.57 Update

In the comments, reader Robert reckons the picture will look very different at local level, with many people switching allegiance away from Labour. We're sure there's some truth in that, but the rising turnout will have brought out the Labour base, most likely to vote tribally. We're predicting Labour gains at Council level and the return of the Bullock.

09.52 Update

@adambienkov (call him a Labour blogger, he likes that) points out that Labour has won in Lewisham West and Penge too. Jim Dowd got 18,501 votes, ahead of his nearest rivals, the Lib Dems with 12,673.

It's now officially a hung Parliament - the outcome most of the country would have voted for, had they been given the choice.

09.47 Update

On Twitter, @andrewmilton points out that it was a 3.6% swing from Labour towards the LibDems, but a drop in the ocean really.

09.37 Update

Joan Ruddock (Lab) wins Lewisham Deptford with 53.7% of the vote. Then: Lib Dems (23.4%), Tories (13.5%), Greens (6.7%), Socialists (1.6%), Christians (1.2%).

So no surprise and the turnout and size of the wins here and in Lewisham East suggest that at Mayoral level Sir Steve Bullock will probably again romp home. Er, it was Brockley Central wot won it?!

08.48 Update

Heidi Alexander (of Brockley Cross walkabout fame) wins Lewisham East.

08.42 Update

What we have here is three main parties who are all losers - none has won the majority of the popular vote or enough seats to secure a majority. A coalition would assemble a new type of government, probably led by a new leader and probably conditional upon PR being introduced. In other words, a coalition with a popular mandate for change. Somehow, the media is contriving to make this sound like a crisis or the status quo, with the threat of LibDems "propping up" an unpopular government (rarther than playing a major role in a new Lib/Lab coalition government or indeed "propping up" an unpopular Conservative Party).

Anyway, we're off to work now, so hopefully no-one will declare Lewisham Deptford result while we're away, but if they do, please amuse yourselves in the comments below.

Glenda Jackson's won in Hampstead with less than a 50 vote margin

07.58 Update
Well, that just about wraps it up for me - 8am seems like a reasonable time to be signing off, so I'm heading to bed. Brockley Nick will keep you updated with the rest of the south-east London results as they trickle in - and then we'll start all over again with the local elections count this evening!

07.40 Update
Labour hold Greenwich & Woolwich (Nick Raynsford's seat). Dulwich & W Norwood and Croydon North are both also red.

07.24 Update
Labour hold Eltham.

07.16 Update
Those losing ministers and ex-ministers in full:
Jacqui Smith
Charles Clarke
Tony McNulty
Jim Knight
Bill Rammell
Vera Baird
Mike O'Brien
Shahid Malik
Angela Smith
Phil Hope

Other big losers:
Lembit Opik (Lib Dem)
Evan Harris (Lib Dem)
Peter Robinson (DUP)
Julia Goldsworthy (Lib Dem)
Susan Kramer (Lib Dem)
Phil Willis (Lib Dem)
Richard Taylor (independent)

And the bold 'tried but failed':
Phillipa Stroud (Conservative)
Sir Reg Empey (Conservative & UUP)
Annunziata Rees-Mogg (Conservative)
Shaun Bailey (Conservative)
Wilfred Emannuel-Jones (Conservative)
Joanne Cash (Conservative)



07.06 Update
Former Home Office and Employment minister Tony McNulty has lost his seat in Harrow, Sky reports.

07.00 Update
Of the south-east London seats, Harriet Harman and Simon Hughes have been returned for Camberwell-Peckham and Southwark-Bermondsey respectively. The Lewisham seats, plus Greenwich, Erith, Eltham, and Old Bexley haven't declared yet. The Croydon seats, Beckenham, Orpington, Bexleyheath and Bromley are all blue.

06.55 Update
Julia Goldsworthy (Lib Dem) has lost her seat to the Tories. Lib Dems have also lost Falmouth. The Tories have really hit the Lib Dems hard in this election.

06.52 Update
All the noises from the national leaders are that nothing is going to happen in short order - they all want to go to bed and will then spend the weekend wrangling, we predict.
The markets were quite happy early on in the night, as it looked as though the Tories were on course for a narrow majority, but the pound has recently dropped sharply against the dollar and traders are pricing in a hung parliament.
Hampstead & Kilburn is very tight and about to start a re-count.

06.38 Update
Turnout figures are very variable - we've seen everything from low-60s to mid-70s. It'll be interesting to see how it averages out nationally.
THE LEWISHAM DEPTFORD COUNT HAS FINALLY BEGUN. BC waits on tenterhooks.
The local election count doesn't start til this evening, but Ladywell councillor Sue Luxton is predicting that Greens will lose seats. She cites a big Labour turnout.

06.33 Update
Frank Dobson has held his seat in Holborn & St Pancras.
Nick Clegg has FINALLY won his seat (the count took forever, for no apparent reason) and therefore is allowed publicly to comment on the national election position, at last.

06.25 Update
Emily Thornberry has held Islington South, which was regarded as a very tricky seat; she had a very slim majority but appears to have consolidated it.

06.13 Update
More London results starting to come through now. Scandal-hit Labour MP Ann Keen has lost Brentford to the Conservatives. Labour leftwinger Jon Cruddas has held onto Dagenham despite a strong challenge from the Tories. BNP got nearly 5,000 votes, taking third place.
Only around 100 more results to come.

06.10 Update
Margaret Hodge has held Dartford comfortably; the BNP came in third with around 6,000 votes. It remains to be seen how they do with the local council results, though.

Introduction

Good morning earlybirds. As you slept, the election bandwagon rolled on, with various winners, losers and collateral damage along the way. You join us now in a state of some confusion: basically, no-one has even a sniff of a majority, even the Tories seem to accept that this Parliament is solidly hung, and the much-touted constitutional crisis swift approacheth.


Some of the highlights (or lowlights, depending on your perspective) which you've missed:

- A fair handful of cabinet ministers have lost their seats, including two former home secretaries;
- The Greens have won their first-ever Westminster seat, in Brighton Pavilion;
- Tories are on track for 309 seats; Labour set for 259.
- Tories' plans for coalition-building in Northern Ireland received a solid knee-capping, with NI Assembly Leader Peter Robinson losing his seat (he hangs onto his Assembly seat though), and Sir Reg Empey failing to win his challenge, while Lady Hermon won as an independent.
- The Lib Dems have performed terribly compared to recent polling-based expectations: they're actually on track to lose seats compared to their 2005 result.
- Some people ran out of time at the polling booth and thus couldn't vote: this is going to become a rumbling scandal which will be made much of by all sides, we anticipate. Lewisham Council said: '2 of our stations had queues but ballot papers were issued before the 10pm legal cut off point so people could still vote.'

Lewisham's count has not yet begun.

142 comments:

Brockley Nick said...

Blimey, woken up by the telly I left on to see Caroline Lucas being interviewed about which possible coalition she might support?! It's a new world.

Anonymous said...

Morning, Nick!

Brockley Nick said...

Morning! On twitter, Sue Luxton's not feeling very confident right now...

Ramble said...

Morning! Thanks for the late night blogging guys.

Anonymous said...

Yes, saw that - have incorporated it into the running narrative. Let me know if you want to take over. I'll be up for a while yet though.

Brockley Nick said...

God no! I'm enjoying your work!

Tressilliana said...

It's 6.45 and the BBC shows the following % votes:

Con 9.4m
Lab 7.4m
LibDem 5.9m

and that produces this number of seats:

275:223:47

Time for PR, surely!

Tamsin said...

Any reason for the delay in starting the count?

Saw the snippet on the local news. Lock-in rather than lock-out of those queuing before 10pm seems the most intelligent and fairest way of dealing with the issue.

Tamsin said...

Not PR - you then lose the constituency link. Make it STV.

Anyway, famously, there are four principles for a fair electoral system - unfortunately they are mutually incompatible (provably so mathematically) so whatever the system is it has to be a compromise. I only hope that if there is a referendum the questions are properly formulated. It is not a simple "yes"/"no" to common market entry.

Tressilliana said...

I'm loving Peter Hennessy's repeated statements that 'The Queen is only activated if....' Makes it sound like they get her out of a cupboard and wind her up if needed.

name said...

Really rooting for Joan Ruddock, just heard that the Lib Dem candidate doesn't in live in the constituency, lives in Lambeth. It confirmed my concerns.

Monkeyboy said...

What the f**k! Will brown AND cameron resign?!!

Simone's said...

Glad I didn't stay up to wait for the local election results... Does BC know when the results are expected?

Anonymous said...

local polling station on the news - polling station at City Learning centre of Manwood Rd. Took me 2 hours in the queue to vote. Hubby missed out. Only 3 people manning the station. What a shambles.

rav said...

Good work in this post - well done for staying up! Looking forward to the Lewisham and Greenwich Council results. I'm rejoicing at Clive Efford (just) manging to hold on to Eltham...

Robert said...

Does anyone know if the announcement of the results of the local elections are an open event?

And if so where to go to see it? And what time?

Raven said...

(The name is Raven! Pressed the button too quickly...)

Tressilliana said...

Heidi Alexander's won Lewisham East, LibDems second, Tories a close third. Labour share of vote down. Can Lewisham Deptford be far behind with its result now?

Tamsin said...

Having a constitutional monarch to "activate" when necessary is just what makes the British system stable and workable even in the current situation. There are formulae to follow with the incumbent having first option to try and form a government (even though the Conservatives are refusing to ackowledge this on air) but if the various party leaders cannot sort something out there is the ultimate two stage safeguard of the monarch being able first to summon them all to BP to be ticked off like the children they are and told to sort out a coalition government to deal with the immediate issue (as in 1931) or if they still don't do that she can cry "a plague on [all] your houses" and send them back to us in another election.

Great system - and good for the parliamentarians from the 16th C onwards who created it - and the pragmatic monarchs over the last few centuries who made sure that they did not upset the apple cart to turn it into a tumbril.

Monkeyboy said...

What if we don't get a reasonable monarch? Why does one family have that right? If I had a choice I may well but my X against Liv but I don't. She dosn't represent me, she hasn't asked my permision. I'm sure she'll act responsibly but the monarchy needs to go but let's sort the house of lords first. Actually, coffee first, reform second

Also...Will be interesting to see if the green ideal survives when their MP is deal making at Westminster

The Cat Man said...

I'm very impressed with the greens actually, very disappointed with the lib dem result but sadly not surprised considering the out dated electoral system.

I think we should keep the monarch though, my trust in politicians is not that high, we need a non-partisan king maker in events like this.

Sash said...

Labour Hold for Lewisham Deptford

Anonymous said...

bbc shows labour win when i type in crofton park postcode

Sash said...

Top 4...

Joan Ruddock Labour 53.7
Tam Langley Lib Dem 23.4
Gemma Townsend Tory 13.5
Darren Johnson Green 6.7

Tamsin said...

When you don't get a responsible monarch you chop off their head - what happened in Britain and France in the 17th and 18th centuries or kick them out - Germany and Spain (although what came next was a bit unfortunate there - and I don't know too much of the detail so I won't pursue it...).
And she does not have the option of exercising power for herself or for what might be seen as her own interest group or class - just of taking it away from the party leaders who are abusing it by not reaching a workable agreement (not enough cupid tea!) and directing it back to us, the electorate, with a fresh General Election.
Much better than, for example, shortening the period between elections to a mandatory 4 years (look at the way American politics is paralysed for nearly 50% of the time).

Name said...

Woohoo for Lewisham Deptford, the Right choice.

Sash said...

Really disappointed in the Green turnout for Lewisham Deptford! Still, my home town constituency is Brighton Pavillion and really proud to have the first ever Green MP there!

Monkeyboy said...

Non partisan king.... What if they are partisan? You're stuck with them. That's the point. How will you know if they're non partisan? Luckily before the war the king had to abdicate due to some marital issues otherwise we could be part of a greater Germany. I'm not a child, I don't need a someone who feels they have a right to decide on my behalf.

Simone said...

I'm glad to have voted Green in Lewisham Deptford, there's always next time and who knows, it could be soon!

Anonymous said...

God help us - another term with Labour in SE4...

Anonymous said...

Cameron has not won this election, he has no right to form a government. The fight now is get a progressivecoalition for the country. With electoral reform as top of the list.

Anonymous said...

Ah..... In all the warm fuggy-headed confusion, the mist of sleep deprivation lifts, a fresh breeze across the cheeks, a moment of joy!

What a spanking the Mung Beans have taken in Lewisham Deptford!!! So much energy, to go backwards!!!! Thank you, you lovely, sweet, reasonable people of this wonderful constituency.

Anonymous said...

Though with the Greens winning a seat we've woken up to the prospect of a mung parliament. I'll get my coat.

Monkeyboy said...

Who knows? Part of the deal could be further devolution to local authorities? Are the libs into that? Whatever happens I'll be surprised if we get a full 5 years out of this, PR (of some description) has to happen. The tory's ruled it out so the libs only really have one choice

that's my incisive, if somwhat obvious, analysis. If the Tories go it alone they will be way too weak

Anonymous said...

I do find it a bit embarassing that our great illustrious leaders who should be setting an example to the rest of us will now embark on a period of childish "we won, no you didn't, my dad's bigger than your dad" squabbling, rather than putting the interests of the country first and working together to find a solution.

Its a shame said...

Interesting to see that the Greens weren't second in the Lewisham Deptford race despite their predictions. Although they have the Brighton seat, I think they find it hard to convert councillors into MPs. To become mainstream they need to have thought more about policy - and realise they need to be tackling big business rather than endless lifesyle changes for the electorate.

Anonymous said...

Yes DOCTOR Lucas joins the bun fight, Mungs everywhere will be getting VERY over-excited. But that honorific, can she really sort out my dodgy knee? Alas it seems not.

From Wikipedia: 'She earned her PhD from the University of Exeter in 1989 with a thesis entitled Writing for Women: a study of woman as reader in Elizabethan romance.' In my experience people with Phd's, who use the title are idiots. Real academics reserve the title for formal use in the academy, oh and for real, ie, medical doctors.

(Mind you if Darren J had a Phd he could call himself Dr Johnson, which would be sort of cool. )

I hope she'll give up her seat in the European Parliament?

TJ said...

In fact Darren did worse in actual vote terms than the 2005 elections, despite a 10% higher turnout. In 2005 he had 3,367 votes, and this time he has 2,772.

Tamsin said...

I really think straight PR should be avoided. The principle of consituency representation is a valuable one and should be preserved. As should the option for independents to stand - Martin Bell (who suceeded) and Esther Rantzen who didn't. Also people with strong local links and affiliations.
What that virtual wall of the seats in order of marginality which was used overnight to illustrage the swings shows us is that people rather than the parties they represent are still important. Those maverick results that the pundits kept exclaiming over - a single spot of red in the blue and blue in the red etc. - show where a significant proportion of the local electorate were bucking the national swing (what would be the only decider in pure PR)and voting for the person not the colour.

With first past the the post and STV local candidates would have to still engage with their electorate and get their approval on polling day. With PR they only have to suck up to the totally powerful and totally unaccountable party officials who draw up the candidate lists.

What the civil servants would like, what the party appratchiks would like and what the politicians would like - but the electorate must not let it happen.

@MB - if Edward VIII had not abdicated I am pretty sure he would have been quietly smothered by the system - metaphorically rather than actually (early days of the Princess of Wales rather than Prince Arthur) - but his pro-Hitler leanings would have made no appreciable difference.

Mr Mouse said...

To go mainstream, they will have to, like, sort of, you know, kind of....grow up. They are the love child of a pressure group and a cult.

Mr Mouse said...

Considered and very lucid post there Tamsin, hitting several nails soundly on the head. I completely agree with you. PR is not the answer.

Mb said...

Tamsin, we have no written constitution so who knows how the monarch will decide to act. I know that in actual fact the monarch does what she is told but all that shows is that she is window dressing a mysterious and arcane dance behind the scenes. Loose the monarchy, formalise a constitution and stop this facade of the queen deciding what's going to happen.

We need a new voting system, that's clear. Not made
my mind in what type. It's demonstrably failed tonight

VotesforAll said...

Isn't it about time we brought in the law where you have to vote like they do in Australia.They have a box which says no party,but I think a lot of people would vote once they got there.

Anonymous said...

I'm very glad we gave the Mungs a good stuffing this year :)

drakefell debaser said...

I am really disappointed that Ms Ruddock has won again.

Mr Mouse said...

At the Apathy Party rally:

"What do we want?"

" A Vote for no-one box!"

"When do we want it?"

"Whenever"

Anonymous said...

Green losses all round. A signal that for one, proper, realistic governance is back and fadism is out.

Brockley Nick said...

Why bring up compulsory voting when the turnout has risen massively this year?

If people can't be arsed to turn up to vote, their vote's not worth having.

Mr Mouse said...

Brown is like a horse with a broken leg at the end of the race. Put him out of his misery Mandy, for gawd's sake.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Nick.

Monkeyboy said...

Tamsin, a compromise. Bruce Forsyth decides, he was on last night. About the same age as the queen and a bonafide national treasure.

Brockley Nick said...

I have spent some time in the company of Bruce Forsyth. He is not a particularly nice man.

Tamsin said...

@MB - Anything formalised is just a blank cheque for lawyers and a recipe for paralyis - but we must agree to differ over a cup of cupid tea.

Compulsory voting brings to mind the Saki story about the (oh dear, constitutional monarch - but it is is fiction) who dealt with the suffragette problem by making voting compulsory for women (but not for men) and subject to stringent fines for non-compliance, and not only in general elections but everything - no woman could afford to go away on holiday and your char ladies (early 20th C. here) had to keep taking mornings off work to go and vote in the Town Hall.
But seriously, as Nick says, if someone can't be bothered to vote their vote is not worth having. The right and ability to vote without coercion is too precious to be messed with. In the third world people walk miles and risk death and intimidation to do what we take for granted.

Now Then said...

@Tamsin, with regards to STV, its based on multiple member constituencies so that the present Lewisham Deptford would have to be added to at least two other adjacent constituencies. Very fair , and particularly to minorities, but with a hugely diluted local link.

Mr Mouse said...

Clegg's handing out that Brucey Bonus. While Brucey introduced me to the wonder that is oatbran porridge, (through the medium of of television I hasten to add), he's clearly a bit of a sh**

Mr Mouse said...

Clegg tips hat at Cameron on 5 live right now

TJ said...

Nick Clegg just came out on the side of the Conservatives. We are doomed.

Mr Mouse said...

Or maybe he's just sending out a clear signal to Labour that Brown has to be a)woken up and b) told to go.

Monkeyboy said...

Don't know what clegg's up too. He looked shell shocked!

Mr Mouse said...

Phoney Cleggmania has bitten the dust.

Monkeyboy said...

Tamsin, you seem to be suggesting that we do away with the messy democratic process and decide things behind closed doors using a benign dictatorship? No matter, SE4 is continuing it's inexorable growth. Nick will need a Home Secretary, i'm sure your in with a shout.

Tamsin said...

Thinking more of what we have with the Mayoral vote in Lewisham. The candidate has to be first or second choice of mroe than 50% of their constituents.

If Sunderland can produce a result in less than two hours having to potentially run the votes through the system twice makes no real difference to the logistics.

Anonymous said...

Surely the maths says that Clegg has to side with the Tories as that's the only situation that can get anyone a majority?! Maybe Tory policies with the Lib Dems acting as their 'common sense and morals' arm (as the Tories are devoid of both) might work out nicely.

Lorna J said...

I just don't get it. Local elections have shown a consistent move away from Labour, national Elections and Ruddock is in again. Is this just representative of the apathetic party faithful of old, who rock out in the general election and vote as their forefathers have voted, incapable of reading policies, understanding the democratic process and not actually voting for somebody who will truly represent the local area?

With the local elections still to be called, I utterly despair that again, Mr Bullock will rock on in as Mayor, ignore the council decisions and make a general mockery of elections. When the re-election is called, and it will be called, please PLEASE people, look at what you are doing, read up on the topic and vote for change, not just what your mum or dad has told you to.

Now Then said...

@Tamsin. I think thats 'alternative vote.'

Pete said...

I imagine that the Green Party must be incredibly disappointed with its vote in Lewisham Deptford. I know I am. I just hope that when they count the local votes that Sue, Ute and Charlotte get in as counsillors.

Tamsin said...

No, MB, the opposite. I don't like the notion of PR because the drawing up of the candidate lists is done behind closed doors. I don't want an appointed House of Lords because that is a result of political reward and machination and done behind closed doors. (Well so is the conception of the next generation of heretiary peers - but at least it is more random in the individuals produced - you don't buy or lick-spittle your way in.)

Mr Mouse said...

How arrogant. Just because people don't vote the way you did, doesn't make them tribalist sheep. Labour was one of the two credible tickets in this election. People don't vote for them in European and local elections, because these elections don't matter that much. General Elections do, hence their strong showing, and the miserable performance of the Mung Beans and other slogan bleeting cretins.

Anonymous said...

Tamsin, even if PR isn't they way to go, then surely there must be a better way of representing what the people actually want? What should be a 36%/29%/23% split between the main parties is currently resulting in a 46%/40%/8% split where it counts, which is quite frankly ridiculous. And we try and preach to the Afghanistans and Iraqs of the world about democracy?!

Anonymous said...

Cameron to make statement at 2.30pm. We'll have to wait till then.

Now Then said...

Just to clarify, there are numerous forms of PR:List system, STV, altenative vote etc. Tamsin is opposed to the list system which she refers to as PR and for the alternative vote which she thought was STV. The confusion is understandable but it looks like we may all have to inform ourselves about this stuff.

Lorna J said...

Hi Mr Mouse - It's not arrogance, it's a life time of living in Labour strongholds of South East London and having family, friends, & neighbours who just follow history.

As it happens, I didn't vote for whom I believed in, I voted tactically because I don't believe Joan Ruddock is what the area needs. The area has changed massively over the past 10 years, as has it's populus and needs. We need someone who is going to listen to the local people, communicate effectively and translate the needs of the local constituency up to government.

It's not my arrogance, but the ignorance of people not looking closely at the national policies and just voting the same way they always have. Party policies change. The Labour of the 80's are not the Labour of 2010, but yet people still show allegiance without recognising the massive differences.

Monkeyboy said...

In a general election I'm primarily voting for which party I want to run the country, as I guess are most people. I understand the constiuency argument but we all know why we're actually voting. There is no perfect system but ours is far from the best.

On the lords, if MY government appoints and not for life, that is preferable to particular families ruling over me as a birthright without any scrutiny as to their competence or integrity. I have zero respect for hereditory peers. Tony Benn did the decent thing and put his views to the vote.

I think clegg/ brown/ cameron need some Cupid tea

Lorna J said...

Hey Monkey Boy - you'd be surprised. I had some shocking conversations at work yesterday with the first time voters. They really didn't have a clue about how the electorate worked, neither did they understand the policies.

With the best will in the world, without proportional representation, in many areas, it's difficult to vote faithfully, for a national change when you live in an area that hasn't changed politically for over 30 years.

Headhunter said...

I actually had to queue to vote yesterday at about 9pm! I was surprised, when I've voted previously I've just strolled in and been out in 5 mins. I had to queue for about 20 mins. Got to meet one of my neighbours though - he heard me say my address and we had a chinwag about the nursery application on Manor Ave. Are you out there neighbour? Do you read this blog?

Nick - Not to change the subject off topic but spill the beans on Bruce Forsyth! Why isn't he a nice man? I love a bit of salacious celeb chat...

Brockley Nick said...

@LornaJ - it's precisely because Labour are not the party of the 80s that people actually voted them in to power for the last 13 years.

Brockley Nick said...

@HH - it's not really salacious, he's a grumpy old sod.

Mr Mouse said...

Point taken Lorna, I do share some of your frustrations. But I would point out that the Labour Party of the 1980's was an unelectable party headed for the graveyard of history. To judge this loveable and ineffectual gang, against the weary party of government that stood in 2010 is a bit unfair. All parties promise much at elections, and change sounds good, especially if it comes from someone who seems fresh and is charismatic.
(Ironically it seems like the leaders promising that only they could bring 'real' change, may be in some sort of alliance by this afternoon.)

Tamsin said...

I do indeed need to educate myself on voting systems (the wonders of wikkipaedia - here I come!) - but thanks, Now Then, you worked out what I was trying to say.

Lorna J said...

Brockley Nick & Mr Mouse - don't disagree with either of you. But my personal convictions (beliefs, as opposed to criminal!), are such that I've had too much of a negative experience of Labour's policies.

By the way, HUGE thanks to Nick & Kate for updating this blog over the past 24 hours. It's fab to have the updates, as and when they happen plus the banter back and forth. LOVE BROCKLEY!

Monkeyboy said...

Boris made me laugh, comparing the new government as a Walls sausage with the tory's providing the meat. Funny... You bastard

yes when I say PR I mean something else... Best read up.I hope our politicos explain the differences well if their's a referendum. It's too important to try and trick people

Now Then said...

@Tamsin. Pleased to be of help. STV is the one that keeps you up 2 nights in a row watching people shuffle bits of paper on Telly.

mintness said...

Interesting to see the Green Party website's front page trumpeting Caroline Lucas' win (quite rightly) and sympathising with their deputy leader's failure in Norwich, but completely failing to acknowledge the desperately poor result in their other "target seat" (ROFL etc.) of Lewisham Deptford.

Mr Mouse said...

Is there any meat in a Walls Sausage? Except pig balls perhaps. You can see where I'm going with this......

Mr Mouse said...

Dr Caroline Lucas, please.

Yes strange, they're not highlighting their complete spanking in Lewisham and Deptford.

'Only the Greens can beat Labour here'

Anonymous said...

Green riddance.

Marc said...

LIke to echo the thanks to both Kate and Nick in feeding the local centric election blogging.

Looking forward to this afternoon's count.

Anonymous said...

Greens winning the front page poll shows how pro-Mung this blog is even in a consituency where they lose hard.

Unknown said...

But there is only one poll that matters. And I think the forces of Anti-Mungism are well represented on the comments.

Brockley Nick said...

Brockley Central has an obvious bias, in that it is mainly read by people from Brockley. The poll did not ask people who they voted for for MP.

Its a shame said...

Darren's quote to the local newspapers:

“The debates turned what was a contest over the best MP for your local area into a prime minister contest – more like the American system.

“The Green Party and other parties such as Plaid Cymru should have been invited to at least one of the debates. It's ridiculous that we weren't.”

Didn't seem to effect the other Green candidates - I think Darren and the Greens need to look very closely at the results rahter than complain that they weren't part of the debates. Their total share of the vote nationally is insignificant.

The statement that they were second to labour in Lewisham Deptford was never true in the case of a general election. The greens are still seen as a one policy party - despite the attempts to push a living wage - and I think people believe the environmental policy will take precedence over common sense.

I voted for them locally but would not consider voting for them in a general election. Locally they work hard and keep the other parties in check - but I've also seen the pushing of green policies despite local opposition, in a 'nanny knows best' kind of way.

Anonymous said...

I voted for Joan, despite my misgivings about her record (ex-CND chair dutifully signing up to every militarist adventure) for the simple reason that I couldn't face the theoretical prospect of the Labour/Lib Dem/Green vote being evenly split in Lewisham, and letting the Tories sneak in. I suspect that was why the Green vote was quite low. Until I went into the polling station I was intending to vote for Darren but at the last minute decided that I could not live with myself if the Tories got in.

Anonymous said...

I find the green background on this site a bit suspicious! ;-)

Brockley Nick said...

The shade of green is actually designed to suggest toxic waste. I bloody hate this planet and will take any opportunity I can to ruin it.

Unknown said...

Darren Johnson is blaming the TV debates for his miserable showing. What about their constant confetti of totally crass leaflets full of stupid uncosted promises. Never did a political candidate work so hard on alienating an electorate in print.

And btw did Joan do so well, because of Brown's performance? I don't think so.

mintness said...

“The debates turned what was a contest over the best MP for your local area into a prime minister contest – more like the American system.

“The Green Party and other parties such as Plaid Cymru should have been invited to at least one of the debates. It's ridiculous that we weren't.”

Yes, but you still failed. I'll repeat that: FAILED. Quite spectacularly. The debate effect may well have been sufficient to put the Greens on the back foot locally, but the LD result ultimately shows that normal people really weren't anywhere near letting you have a say.m

Tamsin said...

You could presumably have the site set up for a different coloured background every day and a rainbow at weekends.

The green, though, is pagan and easy on the eye.

impressed said...

Nick what college were you at at Oxford?

Tamsin said...

Of the triumvir[sorry, person]ate that is BC I think it's Kate that's working this thread...?

Looking at her website she does, indeed, sound nice.

lest we forget said...

How can you call George Galloway a monster? The man's a pussycat!

Miaow!!

Brockley Nick said...

@impressed it was the nerdiest one

Rewardtheresponsible said...

I assume most Labour voters simply work for the government and want to protect their jobs. Looking at the results geographically that certainly seems to be the way of it with both the isolated regions (Northern England) and the 'poor' regions (East and SE London) all Labour strongholds - and places where the Government 'creates' jobs. Everywhere people works for the private sector generally is blue; its like a battle between the capitalist and the socialist.

Anonymous said...

Labour vs conservative - like a battle between the capitalist and the socialist?

My god - is that why labour are 'red'? and supported by the trade unions?

Whatever next? Maybe bears do...

monkeyboy said...

what utter bilge....

Anonymous said...

A rather crude analysis, especially since the supposed 'socialists' have just spent billions propping up largely unregulated financial capitalism.

I don't think everyone who votes labour does so out of pure self interest, though of course why would you blame them if they did. In my experience a lot of people vote labour, for reasons of personal identity, rather than just self interest. ie because they see themselves as a caring person. Btw I'm someone who works in the public sector and who voted Tory.

Rewardtheresponsible said...

Yes Anon 14:27 i think you are right. Unions love Labour because Labour throws money at supporting their membership numbers. Keep the numbers high and that membership fee-income will keep flowing :)
I thought this was obvious. A mate of mine who works for the NHS purely voted Labour to protect his job - he pushes paper around all day (even admits it).

Brockley Nick said...

It is possible to vote labour because you believe that investing in public education, child care, health, transport, Universities and R&D is the recipe for a stronger economy and a happier society. Or that you believe that the Tories are wrong to want to reduce the defecit too quickly and too much, wrong to resist banking regulation and wrong to oppose the bailout of Northern Rock, etc.

Rewardtheresponsible said...

Ha ha Anon 14:39...

"supposed 'socialists' have just spent billions propping up largely unregulated financial capitalism"

...and where did those billions come from exactly? Private sector taxes by any chance?

Anonymous said...

voting for a party because it protects your lifestyle...well OBVIOUSLY. Lots of tory voters in the private sector whos jobs involve pushing paper, it's really not as different as you caricature. I've worked in both, I've been a consultant - consuoltants spend at least half their day formulating reasons for another weeks work.

monkeyboy said...

funding is an issue, the Tory's spend enormous amounts of private cash. do these big doners do it for 'us'?

A good case for state funding of political parties, would take a brave party to sell that one though.

Anonymous said...

Rewardtheresponsible, you seem somewhat ropey on the actual depth and width of the mess we are in.

It isn't taxes that paid to bail out the banks. No its worse than that; they borrowed the money, against increased taxes that haven't even been levied yet. Those taxes are levied on everyone by the way, and with the inevitable increase in VAT the poor will pay proportionately more. Your analysis is Marxist actually, if you believe the labour party is in any way 'socialist' you have a poor understanding of both the awful reality of socialism and the Labour Party.

Rewardtheresponsible said...

Thats weird, I dont remember reading the abolition of "public education, child care, health, transport, Universities and R&D" anywhere in the Tories manifesto. I thought they were proposing only investing as much as we actually can afford, not as just blowing as much as we actually want as Labour has been doing? Greece anyone?

In relation to the deficit, in whose experience has spending more now, actually saved more on the long run? Sorry, dont get that arguement but happy to be talked through it. I would say stop spending now to save money.

Shouldnt the private sector expect any support from Government? Or is it just the banking sector that should expect none (despite it being one of the largest employers in this city)?

Brockley Nick said...

Think you'll find the Tories were committed to the same levels spending until the recession and have only now changed their tune.

I agree public spending as a proportion of GDP is unsustainably high. But all the parties are agreed on that. The defecit needs to be cut, but cutting it too soon would likely tip us back in to recession, making the challenge of paying it back even tougher.

If the Tories weren't desperate to show how tough they were, they would ackknowledge that fact.

Our economy is nothing like Greece's, no matter what The Telegraph might try and tell you every day.

mb said...

the banks should have been allowed to collapse? so you put your cash card in and NOTHING comes out? Or your bussiness account is suddenly stopped? Now I'm no economist but I'd say that was a bad thing.

Brockley Nick said...

PS - yes, the private sector should expect support. I don't see that the Tories are offering much support to business? The NI issue is peanuts - likley offset by tax rises elsewhere.

Lots of things I disagree with Labour on, but the Tories' ideas for the economy are worse.

Anonymous said...

Actually as you know Nick the Conservatives only wish to find £6 billion to avoid a damaging NI increase, which is a tax on jobs. This is more than possible given the waste in public spending. If our economic revival is reliant on wasteful public spending it can't last long.

RTR said...

Why would cutting the deficit now push us into recession? And even then are we talking a technical recession or a deep rooted one? Happy to be educated more on the topic given my Marxist position.

RWR said...

I think that the Tories are less likely to tax business profits and employee-income as excessively as Labour and ultimately drive people out of the country. I believe that Tories are more likely to encourage and reward entrepreneurship as well as at least make an attempt at cutting the benefit-lifestyle which seems to have flourished over the past decade.

Brockley Nick said...

@Anon and RTR - the Tories are planning to cut the planned public defecit with an emergency budget. This means that government spending will fall much more than the NI tax cut would compensate for, which means that spending will be taken out of the economy.

During recession, government spending offsets the collapse of private sector spending. Even with interest rates at record lows, private consumption and business investment is very low and banks are still reluctant to lend. Withdraw public spending, therefore, and the economy starts shrinking again.

Of course the defecit needs to be brought back under control in good time. All the parties want to cut the defecit. The argument therefore is over how much of a reduction is right for the economy.

The Tories want a big reduction quickly, to throw their right wing some red meat. They don't want to do this for the good of the economy, but because like you, they think that everyone in the public sector is a workshy waste of space.

If private sector investment was picking up or if public spending was crowding it out because of higher interest rates, I'd say cut right now. But that is not the case. Too soon would be a mistake.

I oppose the tax on NI, by the way. But that's chicken feed compared to the defecit question.

Brockley Nick said...

Benefits lifestyle? Labour have tightened conditions on unemployment benefits since coming to power.

Monkeyboy said...

As I sit here feasting on roast swan, smoking a Cuban cigar and drinking the finest wines from the public sector subsidised canteen I thinking.....

Do we think these constant detailed daily polls actually contribute to healthy decision making or does it encourage people to follow the herd? I think some countries
ban them for a week or so before election day.

What do peeps think?

Got to go, the dancing girls have arrived....

Anonymous said...

So you want to sustain public spending, but don't want to pay for it with an NI tax rise, because that is merely 'peanuts'. But £6bn of cuts will sink the economy, so is it peanuts or not? You make Darling look fiscally responsible.

The state did not refloat the economy, no matter what Brown says, the partial junking of our currency, and a lot of pain in the private sector has achieved this.

Labour supporter said...

...but not hardly enough. There is still a thriving benefits culture out there.

Brockley Nick said...

No, I'd like to maintain the planned size of the defecit. I wouldn't introduce the NI rise and I'd find 6bn spending cuts to compensate and I'd oppose the ridiculous IHT cut...

The Tories are not proposing to maintain the planned size of the defecit. It would cut further and faster. Dumb.

Brockley Nick said...

@Labour supporter - agreed. More needs to be done. Do you think the Tories will do a good job of that? Did they last time? They put a lot more people on to benefits, to be sure...

Rewardtheresponsible said...

I wont justify your comment..."but because like you, they think that everyone in the public sector is a workshy waste of space"...with a response other than saying that thats an incredible assumption to make. And pretty rude actually but hey ho, its the internet and anything goes. Pretty surprised it came from you though.

Re: Benefits lifestyle - you do live in Brockley right? Have you ever come out of the station in the afternoon during the week and wondered what all the people heading to the betting shop etc... do for a living? I think the answer is they 'do' you and I.

Brockley Nick said...

@RTR - I was also addressing
"anonymous". There have been plenty anon comments on this thread to that effect.

I don't deny there's a benefits culture - but it was ever thus and I haven't heard any real solutions from the Tories, only soundbites. Perhaps you can point to one of their policies that would deal with the issue?

The only real solution to this problem, in my view, is via education, training, social work / intervention and opportunity / job creation...

Brockley Nick said...

PS - reading back through your comments, you said that plenty of public sector workers who did nothing that shuffle paper, so I don't think you should feel quite so injured by my comment.

Social Enterpriser said...

I voted Lib Dems because I believe in their policies, no matter how many people poke fun at their ability to put these policies in place.
I am annoyed that they did not secure more seats, and believe this is likely to be due to a fear of a Tory government coming in.

I have looked at Gemma Townsend's policies and like where she has come from and believe she makes some very good points, but I would do everything I could to stop her getting in, simply because I do not trust David Cameron.

Locally, I have an issue with the comments Joan Ruddock allegedly made regarding gun crime, and do believe she may have become complacent within Lewisham. But I have been happy in Lewisham for 5 years now, and I have no major complaints. In fact as a borough I have seen improvements over the 5 years I have been here, and am always positive about it.
Joan Ruddock was quick to respond to concerns I have recently contacted her about, and has put me in touch with the right people, but I fear this may have been due to the imminent election. I would be interested to know how many people have approached her/ emailed/ written to her regarding a local issue concerning them, and what response they received?

Granted more needs to be done with regards to crime, particularly gang related crime in the local area. But things are happening under the surface, social enterprises are in the process of being set up, and the local community is working hard to fight this. Social Enterprises have prospered under Labour and if Cameron's idea of big society is to be believed then brilliant, it will continue to prosper.

We need to work together to deal with the big issues concerning our community and forums like Brockley Central give us the opportunity to join forces.

I'm already fed up with the arguments and disgruntlement with having Joan Ruddock as our MP again, it's happened let's work with it and make the best of it.

If you're a Conservative voter you may agree somewhat with the notion of 'Big Society' and therefore be keen to work to create/ support social enterprises, to support those fighting what feels like a losing battle against the young people dying on our streets. My experience of Labour in Lewisham is that they also support social enterprise.

I am fully aware that changes do need to be made on a national level in order to deal with lots of the major issues, and yes I am sure we all have differering views on why 'teenagers are out of control' and 'what can be done to stop this'. But this is all talk, unless we tell someone about it, try to influence people it is simply an opinion.

Let's stop fighting and complaining about everything and come up with some viable ways that we can work to deal with local issues that are concerning us. I believe it is one way we can see real change in Lewisham.

Brockley Nick said...

@Social Enterpriser - nice post.

Social Enterpriser said...

@ Brockley Nick. Thanks.

Labour supporter said...

@Nick - no I don't think the Tories will really tackle it either. They will be concentrating on rewarding their financial backers and cutting inheritance tax for the richest. However, I do think that Labour's lack of action over the last decade or so, resulted in a significant amount of lost votes.

On a slightly different tangent, I also think the increase in the Tory vote was down to the new generation of voters. I'd like to see some figures, but I expect a lot of the 18-25 age group voted Tory because a) they cannot remember the Tories when they were in power b) they only know Labour, so 'blame' them for the recession and lack of jobs and c) they look at David Cameron and see a wealthy guy with a 'Balham' lifestle that they would like to emulate.

I think point c) of the above is quite a strong motivator. I think the values of socialism and a duty of care to those less fortunate is not as strong in the next generation; a generation that are suurounded by choice and consumer possibilities. For kids who grew up in the 90s, it's all about image and lifestle - and Cameron's fits for them.

I now await howls of dissapproval.

Anonymous said...

@ Nick. Face it, one man's 'emergency budget', is another man's 'delayed public spending review'. The only reason this silly cuts v investment narrative was used by Brown, was that he knew they couldn't win. The Labour party has damaged this country's future by delaying the necessary measures to deal with the deficit and dressing it up as a Keynesian master stroke. We will have to pay more and more for our debt the longer we allow it to grow. Starting now in a small way is a necessity, if only to ease the markets that will buy and ultimately price this debt. The british people have not bought Brown's junkie (one more fix) rationalisations on our public finances. I wish in a way they had, since in my view the china shop rule applies here i.e. They broke it, they should fix it.

Labour supporter said...

@social enterpriser. As to Joan's non preelection record. I work with the committee for Brockley PFI Leaseholder's association. We represent 600 houseowners, and have serious and valid issues regarding Lewisham council's treatment of leaseholders and the work carried out in the name of the council - and subsequent huge bills (circa £10,000 per leaseholder)for shoddy unnecessary work. This issue effects all classes of constituents, but badly hurts pensioners with limited income who used the right to buy scheme to pay for their properties. Roght to buy that was championed by previous governments.

We have asked Joan several times to come to a meet with us. Recently we managed to see her as she was outside the station. Joan's response to me was that we should not expext her to attend any of our scheduled meetings as she is very busy as a minister. However,she conceeded if we contacted her team she would endeavour to give us a date.

Now, I'm very pleased that she agreed to this; however other members of the group are not hopeful, as they have been trying to engage her for a while. As a labour supporter, I was quite depressed at her lack of urgency or concern about an issue that effects 600 households in her constinuency.

Now I don't think a Tor MP would serve us any better - but I do wonder whether the Lib Dem MP who is not concerned with ministerial duties, or loyalties to a labour council may have worked harder for the people who voted for them.

Anonymous said...

@ Labour supporter. Good news, she should have lots of time to come to your meetings in the immediate future!

Brockley Nick said...

@Anon - it is possible you are right. However, the economy is certainly not the basket case that the tory media has tried to suggest. I would be happier about the Tories plans for defecit reduction if a) they had explained what they were b) they weren't being led by Osborne c) they hadn't been wrong on all of the other big calls of the last two years and d) I didn't believe they were motivated primarily by ideology.

Cameron's original "sharing the proceeds of growth" strategy was sensible. Over time, reduce the size of the public sector as a proportion of GDP. I support that (up to a point). But that wasn't enough for his right wing, who threw their toys out of the pram and demanded cuts, cuts, cuts.

Labour supporter said...

@ anon - oh yes - had quite forgotten she's going to have a free diary now.. that's cleared up that up.

Now if I could only convince her to move from Blackheath and actually into the constituency that elects her, I'd have no complaints at all.

Anonymous said...

@ Nick. Would find it hard to disagree with any of your points, especially in relation to Osborne, he doesn't exactly fill me with confidence. Clarke would be better perhaps, but maybe that is just nostalgia.

Anonymous said...

I'm mystified why Joan Ruddock does so well. She's invisible unless its a few days before a vote. In the last parliament I wrote to her twice asking her opinion on a couple of matters. The first time she said she couldn't offer an opinion because she was a minister; the 2nd time was just before parliament dissolved I wrote asking for her support, hoping she back the removal of clause 43 from the DEB. After the vote she replied she couldn't agree with my viewpoint, fair enough, but her reasons showed that she completely misunderstood my concerns and appeared ignorant of clause 43.
about the clause.

Name said...

Joan Ruddock is a very good MP that is why. For those that really need her services. She is there for them. She is a skilled operator, and you want someone like that in your corner.

What I would say to those frustrated with Joan is to join Labour, see how politics works from the inside. See why things happen in the way they do and why as politicians have to sometimes behave in a way that frustrates you.

Sevenoakser said...

Brockley Kate, get some sleep!

Anonymous said...

I slept 8am to 3pm today!
Will go to bed once we've got the Lewisham Council elections through (soon, hopefully). Thanks for the concern though! Just think of all the local election candidates who've been out canvassing for days and weeks on end, then stayed up all night for the general election result (Lewisham's didn't come through til around 9.30am!) and are now waiting to hear their own fate. They're going to need a long lie-in!

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