Friday, November 21, 2014

Mark Reckless keeps his seat

What with builders working on the back wall and having to read the huge first volume of the latest mammoth biography of  Stalin by Stephen Kotkin in a fortnight when London Library will demand it back, I have found it hard to work up any kind of enthusiasm for the tale of the People's Army's latest recruit who seems to be under the impression that there has been a "real revolution" going on in this country since that day in September when he left the Conservatives to join the aforementioned People's Army. Nor have I been particularly interested in the sad tale of the stupid Labour MP (ex-Cabinet member) who tweeted some kind of an insulting picture and comment about the driver of a white van. (I think I have that right.) If you are that stupid you should not be in politics at all, unless you happen to be defending your seat in a by-election under a different flag against a couple of underwhelming candidates though the Conservative one seemed to be more underwhelming than anyone else. Given that she was an idiot who called for a boycott of Israel (does she actually know what that would entail?) and was generally hopeless at every occasion, she did not do all that badly. The expected 15 per cent margin for UKIP did not materialize.

Reckless kept his seat by 2,920 votes, that is 42.1 per cent of the total vote cast in a turn-out of 50.67 per cent against the Conservatives' 34.8 per cent. Tchah! Stalin used to get 99.8 per cent. Now that's what I call popular support.

The Boss has a highly entertaining rant analysis on the whole subject, which is well worth reading, as always. He points out quite fairly that the new UKIP (ex-Conservative) MP is not the brightest person in the House of Commons and has already been caught out in a number of stupid and ignorant comments, particularly, needless to say, to do with immigrants and their status.

Now that UKIP has two MPs the question of whether they understand whereof they speak will become important. It will no longer be sufficient to produce another picture of our Nige drinking beer or wine and grinning happily into the camera. The media might finally start asking about policies and wondering about certain contradictions in them. There will also be, I can confidently predict, a certain tension between the Dear Leader and the two MPs who will now be the obvious sources of information about UKIP and its policies (or some version thereof).

Meanwhile, the BBC, the Telegraph and, indeed, everyone else has quoted Nigel Farage as saying that this will mean dozens of UKIP seats in the next Parliament. The Telegraph, curiously, predicts a nice round number instead of the dozens but then they also predict a sizeable Labour majority, which is not indicated by the opinion polls, all of which show Labour merely 3 or 4 points ahead, a statistically negligible figure while the Thornberry saga and their poor performance in the by-election must give their strategists somewhat gloomy thoughts. In fact, if the Conservatives abandon their candidate in Rochester and Strood and find someone more intelligent (though it is not clear that intelligence is of any interest to the voters of that constituency) they stand a good chance of taking it in May.

The Dear Leader is also quoted as saying (something we have all head recently) that "if you vote UKIP you get UKIP" in response to baseless (in this case) accusations of voting UKIP will get you Labour. In Rochester and Strood voting UKIP got you Mark Reckless, exactly as voting Conservative in 2010 did.

Somewhere in the long continuous Telegraph update there is a mention of some hack asking Douglas Carswell (the previous recruit to the People's Army) about the possibility of more Conservative MPs defecting to UKIP. He snaps crossly that he is completely uninterested in what the Conservatives (his friends and colleagues until August) intend to do. That would indicate that he does not think there will be any more defections as Reckless's victory is not big enough to encourage any more of them.

The Lib-Dims did particularly badly, getting 0.87 per cent, that is 349 votes; they were easily overtaken by the Greens with 1,692 votes, that is 4.22 per cent and another lost deposit.

It is worth noting that in 2010 when Mark Reckless won as a Conservative, the turn-out was 64.9 per cent and Reckless's majority was 9,953, that is he won by 20.7 per cent.


  1. > (though it is not clear that intelligence is of any interest to the voters of that constituency)

    You're out Thornberrying Thornberry there Helen. It's a good job you confine your thoughts to this little read blog and not Twitter. Miaowww.

    1. Why exactly are you (being such a highly intellectual and important person) bother to read, let alone communicate on this little read blog? I don't care, of course, but I do wonder why you don't do something more commensurate with your own high intelligence and importance, both of which I deduce from your supercilious and silly comments. But Ms Thornberry will, undoubtedly, be pleased that you have now heard of her.

  2. Well the quote from you could be taken to be as contemptuous of the proles as Ms Thornberry's tweet was. Disinterested observers might think you simply seek to replace one from of technocratic Government, the EU, with another more amenable to your own thinking.

    As to my quips I'm simply reflecting what you write in your more self-deprecating moments, of which there are many on this blog.

    1. Why the proles? Did I mention anybody's class? Hmmm? I talk of people's actions and intelligence. You, on the other hand, seem to assume that if there is anything derogatory in any comment it must refer to the proles. Now, I wonder why that is.