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Will Walter’s eviction depress Labour’s by-election turnout?

September 29th, 2005
    How will tonight’s elections go?

As well as the PR disaster at the Labour conference itself the forceful eviction of 82 year-old Walter Wolfgang came on the eve of the two by-elections where the party is defending pretty safe majorities in Scotland.

Forcing the escapee from Nazi Germany from the conference hall and the constant repetition of the incident over the past 36 hours on television cannot have helped the Labour effort to get its vote out today in Livingston for Robin Cook’s old Westminster seat and Glasgow Cathcart where the ex-MSP is now in jail.

When Labour officials chose September 29th for the votes they must have thought that they would be helped by all the attendant publicity. Well there’s been coverage alright but not quite of the sort that enthuses activists.

We’ll know in a few hours just how the voting has gone but almost certainly some votes will have been lost because of what happened in Brighton.

Also overnight we should get the results of this week’s Thursday council by-elections. We have not got an exhaustive list but those we know about are at:-

  • Bournemouth UA, Kinson North
  • Derwentside DC, Stanley Hall Party Defending Seat: Lab.
  • East Sussex CC, Pevensey & Westham Party Defending Seat: Con.
  • Maghull TC, East Ward Party Defending Seat: Con
  • Rother DC, Bexhill St Stephens Party Defending Seat: Con.
  • Salford City Council, Barton Party Defending Seat: Lab.
  • Wealden DC, Pevensey & Westham Party Defending Seat: Con.
  • Winchester City Council, Olivers Battery & Badger Farm Party Defending Seat: LD.

  • Mike Smithson






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