Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Fallout From the London Nightmayor

Francis Maude issued this statement tonight on the Greg Dyke non-candidacy...
“David Cameron had discussions with Greg Dyke, starting at the end of last year, about the prospect of becoming a candidate for Mayor of London. These discussions included the possibility of being a joint Conservative Lib-Dem candidate. Throughout this, our aim has been to get the maximum number of good candidates to stand to give London a real choice. However, Ming Campbell said that he was not allowed to go ahead with any form of joint candidate, irrespective of the merits of the candidate, because of their Constitution. In any event, Conservative Party members in London would have been given a say in the process. The primary process for the selection of our candidate is continuing. Over 40 people have already applied to take part in our open primary and we will be announcing the process shortly.”

So he confirms the story was true. Ming Campbell's total rejection was interesting as well as slightly mealy-mouthed. He took the high moral ground and said that it would deprive the electorate of a choice. Not exactly what the LibDems thought when they withdrew their candidate against Neil Hamilton or Richard Taylor in Kidderminster was it? On those two occasions they were quite happy to deny the electorate a choice.

But don't get me wrong. I am delighted Greg Dyke will not be standing under a Conservative banner, essentially because it would have been a fraud on the electorate. He isn't, after all, a Liberal, let alone a Conservative. He's a damned Socialist! How anyone on the Cameron team could have thought this was a good idea baffles, as well as horrifies me. I've made clear in the past that I support their 'big tent' policy, but this is a step too far, even for me.

And what message does it send to the other candidates who have already started campaigning? Several have given up their jobs to seek the nomination, yet they have essentially been told by the party that they are not good enough. Well the party will now have to make do with them because it is quite clear that no one else will come forward.

Of course, the nightmare scenario now is that the LibDems persuade Greg Dyke to stand for them. How could the Conservatives then criticise someone they had been seriously talking to about standing under their banner? With difficulty, that's how.

The only person chuckling into his whisky glass tonight will be Steven J Norris. Cometh the hour...

68 comments:

Anonymous said...

How about some fallout from Davie Boy's comment in todays Scotsman newspaper

"The Tory leader has made regular visits north of the Border during the campaign, and today's trip will not be the last. "One of the reasons I go a lot to Scotland is that I really do think that a Conservative recovery is part of saving the Union. I think Scotland needs a strong centre-right voice," he said.

He also confirmed the Tories' commitment to the Union would mean that, in the event of a hung parliament, their MSPs would vote to prop up a Labour-led Executive in order to stop the SNP taking power."


VOTE TORY - GET LABOUR

Anonymous said...

Iain, I think that you need to have a chat with David Davis, Greg Dyke was chatting to him on his way to the sky studio's to do "what the papers say"!
He also gave a very candid report of the actual chat he had with David Cameron and his views.
The Labour party also thought that they could "decide" on a suitable candidate and ignore the obvious choices for the role of London Mayor, that is why Ken Livingston won and the Labour candidate is where political now?
They discovered the hard way that ignoring the views of the voters in preference to possible candidates is not a successful way to win elections.

Anonymous said...

"He also confirmed the Tories' commitment to the Union would mean that, in the event of a hung parliament, their MSPs would vote to prop up a Labour-led Executive in order to stop the SNP taking power."

Anon, it would help if you checked the Conservative manifesto before posting such tripe!
Vote Libdem get Labour is the correct assumption, the Scottish tories have ruled out any deals with other parties, instead they will vote on an issue by issue basis.

Ryan Castle said...

Thank God someone in the party has realised that this would have been a dreadful mistake. it is one thing trying our best to get labour out, but please a collaboration with the liberals we should give ourselves a better chance. the party should not be scared to take on labour even in the strongest areas and openly and loudly explain why we would be a better choice. we should not in vain hope of getting a few swing voters convas under a seaweed green conservative liberal mix. much of london's population will be ready to listen to a confident party at the elections because ken livingston has not been what they would have hoped. furthermore the heavily business minded population of london, an the white collar workers will be starting to wonder whether labour can even run the economy well without red tape. i'm not one to like rejection, but this time i think it saved us from a ball and chain we really didn't want.

Anonymous said...

http://news.scotsman.com/politics.cfm?id=600592007

tripe? oh really?

Anonymous said...

Annabel Goldie announced that the Scottish Conservatives would vote on an issue by issue basis and would not do deals with other parties in coalitions.

Anonymous said...

and D. Cameron said

"He also confirmed the Tories' commitment to the Union would mean that, in the event of a hung parliament, their MSPs would vote to prop up a Labour-led Executive in order to stop the SNP taking power."

Who rules Scottish Tories?

michael said...

PETER HITCHENS WAS RIGHT!!!

HE PREDICTED THAT SOMETHING LIKE THIS WOULD HAPPEN.

Chickens coming home to roost, hey Iain?

Anonymous said...

Easy. Cameron and the Tories must not run a candiate if the Liberal runner is any good at all.

Get Ken out at all costs. He is much, much worse than his media image.

Oil trader? Embassies around the globe? Running the trains in the home counties? The £1bn-a-year bus subsidy? Probably the worst air pollution (not CO2, pollution) in Europe?

Anonymous said...

someone at HQ to seems to view the boundaries of the big tent as sufficiently elastic to allow them to operate in another tent altogether. That other tent won't have Labour's red flag fluttering on top...but it could well have a Green one.

Auntie Flo'


Auntie Flo'

Anonymous said...

Blimey, working so late I've got double vision

Auntie Flo' - just of me one this time

the ghost of Peter Hitchens said...

Boooooooooooooo!!!

I told you sooooooo!

c v barker said...

I think the idea of London mare was floored from the beginning.No one should stand,go back to democratic local government.There is this move to dictatorship which is putting people off politics.Or voters should boycot the whole imposition.

Jorgen said...

What message it sends? It sent me the message that I have been right about Cameron the whole time and confirm the importance of a protest vote until Cameron goes away.

Tim Roll-Pickering said...

He took the high moral ground and said that it would deprive the electorate of a choice. Not exactly what the LibDems thought when they withdrew their candidate against Neil Hamilton or Richard Taylor in Kidderminster was it? On those two occasions they were quite happy to deny the electorate a choice.

Where exactly does it say in stone that parties must contest every seat? Surely parties are voluntary organisations and have the right to deploy their resources, including candidates, as they see fit. Throughout history all parties have not contested some seats and at the last election the Conservatives were 16 candidates short. If a party is unlikely to win, but is likely to make it harder to get acceptable representation, then it has every right to question whether the political goals of the party are best served by standing a candidate or not. Any supporter of first past the post needs to acknowledge that it structurally encourages this.

One point which has gone relatively uncommented in all this is that the London Mayor is elected on one of the strangest voting systems known to humanity, whereby you only get a first and second preference. The result is that it's harder for one single challenger to establish themselves as "the only candidate to beat the unpopular dominant party" but equally it leaves the anti-dominant vote open to shredding. A Conservative candidate could potentiall beat Livingston on STV transfers from the Lib Dems, Greens and UKIP, but the Supplementary Vote would waste a lot of those votes. Look at the Torbay election where almost 50% of votes didn't count in the final stage (and where there were at least seven "independent Conservative" candidates"!) So a combined candidature is not without merit.

judith said...

Surely the reasons why no-one can find a 'good' candidate are obvious.

Why should a successful person (in whatever sphere) spend a lot of time and even more money campaigning for what is essentially a non-job, that few take seriously, and which would take them nowhere career-wise?

Could you imagine someone with managerial skill and imagination like Stuart Rose wanting to spend his days with twits like Lee Jasper? How will a 'celebrity' help to run London? What knowledge would they have of dealing with Government Depts and politicians etc?

This is why so many(except me) seem ready to endore a washed-up, two-time loser like Norris - sorry, can't see him appealing to the younger voter.

kris said...

you guys must be smoking crack if you seriously think Steve Norris is ever going to be elected London Mayor.

DJM said...

Iain, this is getting embarrassing. Notwithstanding your April Fool, do you really think you could do any worse than any other candidate? "May coward shame distain his name" as Burns put it. Put yourself forward, make the points that need to be made, run him as hard as you can and set yourself up as a strong candidate in one of the safe Conservative seats in 2009.

Honestly, it's painful to watch people of integrity and vision(and I can safely say Greg Dyke can NOT be included in this category) shy away from challenges of this type. If not you, who else has got the profile, the ideas and the savvy to make this a real contest?

If Labour are being flattened all around the country, why is it that Livingstone looks invincible? He encompasses all that is bad about the party.

Chad said...

It couldn't be worse for Cameron really. They sold out and sought a LibDem alliance but the LibDems slapped them down.

A transparent attempt at power without any values.

That leaves Maude and Cameron with egg on their faces and small c conservatives looking for the exit before they pull a similar stunt again.

Vote Tory, get Europhile LibDems.

No longer a political jibe, but now a political reality.

hatfield girl said...

London mayor -a tawdry office, elected by almost unintelligible proportional representation vote, occupied by a contemptible man, surrounded in his redoubt by a stalinoid mad-left splinter group of the fourth international, with an agenda wholly hidden from the electorate.

All this, and the purpose of the office, at all, is to further the regionalisation of the UK to conform to European Union prerequisites for the allocation of our own tax revenues.

What politician of standing and honest reputation would go near such a pig's breakfast?

Anonymous said...

If "Bullingdon Dave" did such an idiot thing he should apologise NOW to his Party membership.
Dyke is an unhappy Socialist-not a Conservative!

Trumpeter Lanfried said...

On this occasion the Tories would seem to have deserved Iain MacLeod's famous put-down. They have been too clever by half.

Paul Linford said...

Spot on Iain. This was a bizarre flirtation by Cameron, though no less so than Blair's co-option of the Thatcherite former BBC D-G, Lord Birt.

Giovanni said...

Ah well, we can't win all the meida battles.
There will be good days and bad days in the return to DOwning Street.
This was a bad one.

Ed said...

Why should a successful person (in whatever sphere) spend a lot of time and even more money campaigning for what is essentially a non-job, that few take seriously, and which would take them nowhere career-wise?

Then the party should select someone young and not-yet-established to stand, or campaign vigorously against the institution itself. Or both.

Anonymous said...

Today's rumour ! David Davis for London Mayor !

Ken Livingstone is home free already.

Anonymous said...

Stop press... Dick Whittington to run as London Mayor...

David Boothroyd said...

How do you spell debacle? Do you include the accent or not?

Seriously, Ken Livingstone and the London Labour Party will be extremely pleased to have confirmation that the Conservatives feel none of their current crop of potential Mayoral candidates can beat him. Anonymous @8:18 AM was right to observe that Greg Dyke is really fundamentally a left-winger who has become disenchanted with Labour for one very personal reason. He would make a poor centre-right candidate.

Edward said...

Let's not forget that Nobber was in the Labour Club at university...

Chuck Unsworth said...

Iain,

'He's a damned Socialist!'.

Arent' they all (damned, I mean)? I do hope so. After all, there has to be some justice and retribution for what they've inflicted on us all over recent years.

As to Greg Dyke's candidacy (alleged), well the remuneration package would possibly have been a step up, but the people he'd have been obliged to work with would have counterbalanced that benefit nicely. I think it's something to do with the actual location of the 'Glass Bollock'. It's obviously on some sort of Ley line or something. They should really consider rebuilding somewhere else - the Orkneys would seem to be a suitable place.

Ken Livingstone's constant nasal whining is a dreadful affliction - like a sort of political tinnitus. And just as annoying.

Ed said...

Leopards can change their spots:

Blair used to be in CND and used to want to improve the NHS!

Anonymous said...

ed - i did have a bit of a tantrum with you yesterday, but effing heck, you are bang on the button with that last comment ! one whiff of power, and the principles go down the toilet..

provincial and disillusioned tory said...

Please, please, please! Not "Shagger" Norris again!

Ed said...

i did have a bit of a tantrum with you yesterday

Who had a tantrum with me? Who? Someone who didn't have enough confidence in his/her opinions to post under his/her name had a disagreement with me yesterday but which anony was it?!

machiavelli said...

It amused me that the Tories wanted Greg Dyke to stand, and the Lib Dems didn't. Given he's one of their not one of ours, it's hardly a ringing endorsement of their own member

i spy strangers said...

"The only person chuckling into his whisky glass tonight will be Steven J Norris. Cometh the hour..."

Well, in Steve's case the man certainly cometh (quite frequently, by all accounts).

Richard Havers said...

Iain asks....How anyone on the Cameron team could have thought this was a good idea baffle...

It baffles me that anyone would be baffled :)

Politics has nothing to do with the old labels of Socialist, Tory or Liberal. Politics is a business. It's been getting worse, and it'll get a lot worse yet.

Cameron will do whatever it takes. I'm beginning to believe those who say he has no beliefs.

Newmania said...

Iain does it not show that the Conservative Party have concluded that in the London of today a Conservative Party cannot win. Why do you imagine that 70 % all development s must be council housing and the Labour Party assiduously encourage immigration which has flooded into the Capital their last Southern redoubt. The indigenous English Family (Working working class ) is disappearing for the scene and although we are not ( all) white, my family will be joining the phenomenon known as white flight over the next month or so .

To me it looks as though the people who have the figures have decided London is lost. It is a foreign country.

Colin D said...

Anybody but swagger Norris. Another talent goes to the dogs [Dyke]. Just PROVES the point that "party" politics has gone well past it's sell by date!

Londoner said...

It's actually about the daftest election in which to field a joint candidate as it's single transferable vote - so if we select a candidate that appeals to Lib Dem voters more than Livingstone does, and beat the Lib Dem on the first ballot, there will be a voting coalition anyway. And the same if the Lib Dems picked a good candidate and by some mischance came second on the first ballot.

But - what an embarrassment this whole farce of the lack of a candidate has been. Isn't it time for Cameron to tell some talented younger MP and/or Shadow Minister to stand, on the guarantee that they will certainly not have to give up their Parliamentary seat unless they become Mayor - and even then not necessarily? Do it for a term whilst grooming a good successor on (or especially put onto) the GLA and, if you do a good job, you will be rewarded with a place in a future Cabinet, future (elected or unelected) Upper House etc, whatever you want. It is the chance to be the storm trouper upsetting the Labour applecart on the way to a General Election victory. And if it's a heroic failure, then no-one is going to blame such a candidate starting from where we are now.

So, some initial suggestions: Boris Johnson, Theresa Villiers, Ed Vaisey, Mark Field, Bernard Jenkin, Greg Hands, Peter Ainsworth - any other presentable up and coming London or South East MPs please?

And after reading our suggestions Cameron should just call them in and tell them that that is their job for the Party now for a while and, unless they come up with a stunningly good reason, if they refuse they'll be finished under Cameron. And if it ever leaks that they've been forced to do it, they'll be finished as well. This candidate would have to to through the selection process for endorsement, of course, but this would be done in a month from a standing start. Time for a touch of democratic Stalinism or, rather, decisive leadership!!

BOF2BS said...

Chuck Unsworth said...

".... like a sort of political tinnitus."

Superb phrase - if original suggest immediate copyright protection!

Eastbourne Granny said...

Oh dear all the 'old Tory' rhetoric out over this issue - now I think there is room for 'old Tory' and a new as well - did any of you see the News Review with Dyke? - I thought he was actually quite nice about Cameron - he said nowt about the Lib Dems really, and he was sneering about Labour at the start - I could accept him as an Independant who had support from the Tories on certain issues.
I am a grandmother, but even I can see that Old Style just main stream politics has to change enough to embrace others - I find it quite refreshing, exciting and a damn site more interesting, I like Cameron he has more honesty and bravery than a lot of MP's out there - Labour are shot to bits (they are still the old spend and bust they always were), the Lib Dems seem to change from one consituency to the other - and their negative and at times dishonest campaigning right now is quite a turn off - Oh well I have had my little rant for today.
Thanks for reading this far :)
Josephine

Ed said...

Londoner:

Agreed, the problem is that attracting candidates is tought because it's not an obvious step on the usual career path.

Newmania:

"White flight" only happens because of momentum and when people as bright as you are doing it I guess there must be a serious problem. However it's not inevitable and London is not "lost" to the Conservatives. Don't be so defeatist!

Newmania said...

I was not much impressed with Norris until the Doughty Street event.I wonder if the London Mayoral might also be a breakthrough for alternative media .

Dale hits the big time just as he rides off into the sunset
" Come back Dale ...

Come back dale !!"


Roll the credits

Neil Craig said...

While there is a case for uniting behind a candidate to make a moral point one should be careful of doing it when the job carries as much power as London mayor.

In any case i do not think that Dykes is the great hero who stood for truth & free speech over WMDs - what really happened is that the BBC thought they had a deal whereby they wouldn't mention WMDs & Downing Street wouldn't criticise the BBC & Alastair campbell put his boot through this cosy stitch up.

Secondly the Tories have no right to claim to moral righteousness here not only because they supported the war but because they said they would still have supported the war without the WMD lie (in which case it would certainly have ben a criminal action).

Thirdly neither has Ming. He told parliament what a wonderful piece of work the dodgy dossier was. It was only because Chrlie was in charge that they had the intestinal fortitude to oppose the war.

On second thoughts possibly they deserve each other.

Londoner said...

Newmania

I think you are totally wrong either that the Party has, or should, write off London. It had one of the largest regional swings to us in 2005 and there are bags of Parliamentary seats in London which we will win back next time. The GLA results were also very good in 2004 even as Livingstone was being re-elected. One of the reasons is that the younger professionals, who will always flock to London when young even if they drift into commuting in their 30s and 40s, are coming back to us.

The problem is the nature of the Mayoralty - it's an unattractive job, not just because of the career path point made by Ed but because it's style rather than substance: perfect for an egotist like Livingstone (or Archer), but we don't want the personification of London to be clowns like them.

As for "white flight" and immigration - it is not white flight but flight of middle class families who cannot afford, or do not want to buy, private education. Many of these will be white but I don't think it's got anything to do with race - except possibly that middle class blacks may be more prepared to pay for private educuation with only a middling income: there are some private schools in south east London now with a majority of non-white children. Their parents may not yet be Tory voters but they are there for the taking.

As for recent immigrants, I think it's out of date to assume they'll be natural Labour voters: the eastern European self-employed are much more likely to become Tories. Also remember EU citizens can vote in local elections, although not national. If we were not in such a mess without a candidate, we ought to be undertaking a publicity campaign to get all those French bankers etc living in London to vote for us in 2008 - they've come here to avoid socialist French income taxes so they'll hardly vote Labour!

You are also wrong that 70% of new developments are "Council" (I think you mean social housing). The Planners try to get 30% of "affordable" housing (not necessarily quite the same as "social") on larger developments but often don't succeed. Look at all the private development along the south side of the Thames - don't tell me that's 70% social, or affordable, or that there is balancing mass Council house building elsewhere in London - there isn't.

Anonymous said...

anonymous:9.25.
Oh no he isn't!

jailhouselawyer said...

Doesn't the following quote show that you were barking up the wrong tree?
"However, Ming Campbell said that he was not allowed to go ahead with any form of joint candidate, irrespective of the merits of the candidate, because of their Constitution".

Chuck Unsworth said...

"BOF2BS said...
Chuck Unsworth said...

".... like a sort of political tinnitus."

Superb phrase - if original suggest immediate copyright protection!"

The medical staff here tell me that everything I say is 'original'. Sadly I'm not going to be let out on the strength of that, though...

Tim Roll-Pickering said...

Londoner at 10:51 am: It's actually about the daftest election in which to field a joint candidate as it's single transferable vote

No it's not. Single Transferable Vote allows the voter to list as many candidates as they like in order of preference. Supplementary vote allows them to indicate only their second preference. Under STV someone voting for, say, the Green candidate who likes the Lib Dem second and the Conservative third can vote Green 1, Lib Dem 2, Conservative 3 and if the last two are Conservative & Labour they will contribute to the defeat of Labour. But under Supplementary Vote they must either tactically work out which candidates are likely to be in the last two (not helped when there will be three loud voices claiming this) or more likely just give their second preference to the candidate who is their second preference. And if it's the Lib Dems then that voter has no say in the Conservative-Labour final round and thus Labour could win because the anti-Labour vote is shredded. STV encourages the consolidation of the opposition vote one way through transfers, First Past The Post encourages it another way through tactical voting. Supplementary Vote just stops it in the middle.

Rog said...

That Cameron and his band were consorting with the appalling LibDums, AND were trying to get a leftie luvvie muppet like Dyke on board is not a "step too far".

It is beyond a f****** joke!

To have even considered such actions demonstrates just how lost and craven the Conservatives have become.

Final nail time. I now see the Cons as essentially indistinguishable from NuLab, and will therefore be voting permanently elsewhere in future.

Newmania said...

Newmania engages in appropriate rapping war with Londoner.(Supply own” Its like that its just the way it is “ sound track)
L
I think you are totally wrong either that the Party has, or should, write off London. -----
N
I take your points and I was hopeful that the factors you mention would serve us well( Young professionals rent and are not usually even registered electors though) . I do not have access to figures across London that would allow one to come to any conclusion. From the determination of the Conservative Party not to select a Conservative I have assumed someone does . I hope I am wrong .
L
The problem is the nature of the Mayoralty.
N
Rubbish the Mayor is hugely powerful. He is directly elected by the largest vote in the UK and has limitless access to the media . Style over substance would otherwise appeal greatly to the Cameroon marketing cadre .Livingstone has only begun to flex his muscles. The problem that all Conservatives aim to be ‘chosen’ not elected. The Conservative Party is full of people who are not up the rough and tumble and do not want to be shown up. Also they have concluded they are going to lose when by merely being a Cameron A list apple shiner they slither along .
They do not like the smell of democracy in the morning and they are not up to the job. This comes form a culture of conformity that you may like but I do not and is a symptom of much that is wrong with the Puppet Party system.








L
As for "white flight" and immigration - it is not white flight but flight of middle class families who cannot afford, or do not want to buy, private education. Many of these will be white but I don't think it's got anything to do with race –
N
Well quite my wife and child are black I hoped I had made this distinction .




L
As for recent immigrants, I think it's out of date to assume they'll be natural Labour voters: the eastern European self-employed are much more likely to become Tories.

N – Poles They work on building sites and they are going home. They will not vote at all . They are only self employed because of the benefits to the "Main" Contractor and would more properly be called a Labour Only Sub Contractor.



Effniks

There are many exceptions of course but the recent immigrant population overwhelmingly vote Labour. Some may be Conservatively inclined but have little interest in conserving the values and culture of 'this' country. They support multiculturalism and no Conservative should ever do so. There is an irreducibly divergence within what is admittedly a complex picture.



L-French bankers etc living in London –
N - Tiny numbers I clearly live in a different London to you . Its easily done .


L
You are also wrong that 70% of new developments are "Council" (I think you mean social housing).
N
70 % is the GLAs guideline and represents central government policy under the amendment to the Town and Country planning Act. Islington argued their way out of it by saying they were already the countries most overcrowded Borough ( true) and pleading for exemption for number of reasons . Only minor changes have been made they have no power. Despite an unanswerable case in a Borough where schools are the second worse in the country . 50 % is COUNCIL housing of which 70% are on benefits already .11000 units are to be added by the Liberals who despite claiming they would have no further 21st century slums, have been forced to accept exactly that.Electorally they could not stand against further social disaster in the form of state housing. I `m afraid you are entirely wrong here.

Walk around the Andover estate and try to get anyone to vote for you. You will feel differently about it ...actually don`t .


Its like that its just the way it is.

Hoo Ha

PS I shall be campaigning for the Conservative Candidate whoever it is provided he is in some sense a Conservative. Norris looks like the chap to me . Sound man, better to fight on you feet than submit on your knees which is what the Dyke catastrophe looks like to me

Newmania said...

Tim Roll - I have just sat clutching my temples trying to work out what to do for a few minutes .Isn`t Londoners Point still a good one ? I think so

Newmania said...

This is it isn`t it ?

Instant run off voting (IRV) is a voting system used for single winner elections in which voters rank candidates in order of preference. In an IRV election, if no candidate receives an overall majority of first preferences, the candidates with fewest votes are eliminated one by one, and their votes transferred according to their second and third preferences (and so on) and all votes retallied, until one candidate achieves a majority. The term 'instant runoff voting' is used because this process resembles a series of run-off elections.


Seems to me that Londoner is right there is no point in a joint Candidate..I `m really not sure ?

Anonymous said...

Another example of the utter stupidity of Cameron.

Thomas.

verity said...

You mean immigrants can vote in Britain before they've even acquired citizenship? Why not just give every British person a gun so they can shoot themselves through the head and leave the country clear for "immigrants"? I cannot believe foreigners can determine the governance of any part of Britain.

Second, I hate David Cameron and think he is a cheap, condescending little egoist - although God knows what he has to feel egotistical about as he is such a pedestrian thinker. Take away the OE polite patter and he is a fat, squelchy zero. A-lists, 50% women candidates, the Greg Dyke descent into lunacy.

He is such a silly little fidget.

Third, I have the ideal candidate for Mayor of London (if you must have a mayor) and she can beat Livingstone.

Saira Kahn. She's mouthier than Livingstone, has a much louder voice and can talk anyone down, is fizzing with energy, and, unlike Red Ken, is intensely patriotic. (She yelled at some fellow second/third generation Pakistani malcontents, "If you don't like it here, why don't you go back to Saudi Arabia?")

She's a pistol and she could whup Livingstone's vile arse.

Tim Roll-Pickering said...

Newmania: "Instant Run-off Voting" is not a term that gets used much in British discussion on electoral systems. What you've described is called either "Single Transferable Vote" or "Alternative Vote". (STV is probably better known for multi-member seats but exists just as well to elect single positions.)

Also because the system for electing Mayors is rare (and frankly a deliberate fix) the term "Supplementary Vote" isn't so well known and less attention is devoted to it.

The crucial differences are:

STV/AV/IRV: Voters get to indicate all their preferences for candidates.

Supplementary Vote: Voters get to vote only for a first and second preference.

Were voting in London a simple Con-Lab-Lib affair the distinction would not matter. But with a very significant vote for other parties the difference does become stark. It is likely that a lot of votes from smaller than the Big 2 & 1/2 will be needed to defeat Livingston, but the Supplementary Vote does not allow a voter to guarentee they have cast a vote against Livingston that will count in the second round.

In the Torbay Mayoral election in October 2005 a whopping 43.5% of votes cast did not count in the second round because neither first nor second preference were cast for either the Lib Dem or official Conservative. Instead many were cast for various independent candidates, including rather a lot of recent Conservative members, "Independent Conservative" councillors, unsuccessful applicants for the Conservative nominee and so forth.

Take a look at this page for more details on the Supplementary Vote:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supplementary_Vote

Londoner and your assumption seems to be assuming that the system makes joint candidates pointless as the votes can transfer between them. Can you tell me how someone who votes Green 1, Lib Dem 2 will influence a Conservative-Labour final two?

hatfield girl said...

See, all this pr stuff is to prevent us understanding what we are doing even when we are trying.

And to stop parties saying what they intend to do before we vote.

There ought to be a political blogger candidate, it's the only medium where there can be instant clarification and time to digest what the explanation means before venturing to the polling station.

Would a blogger please step forward and we can all back them up and get rid of Livingstone.

After all, he got in the first time as an independent with a tiny back up staff.

Londoner said...

Newmania - thanks for agreeing with me on voting. Granted to those who have pointed it out, it's not fully STV but, on the assumption that KL will be into the last ballot anyway, and that the Con and Lib Dem candidates will be the next two, then my point holds. The point about Green third preferences is unlikely to sway things too much, frankly.

Taking up a few of Newmania's other points (can't do the rapping - sorry), he says: "Some [ethnic minorities] may be Conservatively inclined but have little interest in conserving the values and culture of 'this' country. They support multiculturalism and no Conservative should ever do so." I disagree with both parts of that, to the extent that they are meant to be universal or near universal comments. First, the "values and culture" of the local Christian Churches around my part of London, for instance, are kept going largely by those of West Indian and African origins. Often it is certain militantly secularist english who are most ignorant and hostile to such Christian traditions (the same West Indian communities are also probably strongly monarchist). The "values" of many Asian communities are old-fashioned family values. The values of other asylum seekers are often rather aligned to our ideas of political freedom. Conversely, I do believe in multiculturalism, provided certain basic values are held in common, and I regard myself as a fairly right wing Conservative. Are you against the Jewish communities of North London maintaining their separate traditions and sending their children to learn Hebrew on Saturday mornings? That is multicultural but it does not mean being cut off from everyone else by ties of friendship made at mixed schools, through work, university etc. If you like it is integrated multiculturalism.

Newmania also takes me up on "French bankers etc living in London" – OK, they might not all be bankers but you'll find that the French working in London runs into tens of thousands, the majority of which are professionals rather than waiters. Someone must have a statistic of the number of non-UK EU national working in the City and Docklands, and it will not be a small figure, believe me (also a few football players just north of there - Thiery Henry is not a bad example of multiculturalism either, and he has embraced good London football values).

Regarding foreigners voting - my point was that EU citizens can vote in local government (including Mayoral) elections. This now includes Poles. Those from outside the EU cannot, unless they take British (or Irish, I suppose) nationality. This has been a fact for a great many years and it's a bit late to start getting indignant about it.

Sorry to be so long.

verity said...

Jews sending their children to learn Hebrew on Saturday mornings are completely integrated and are as British as we, the indigenous Brits, are.

People who go to mosques are not integrated, by and large, and do not feel British. In fact, inexplicably and hilariously, they feel superior to the British. The Jews have made incalculable contributions to our civilisation and the civilisation of the West in general. The muslims have contributed precisely zero, if you don't count charming Persian miniatures.

You write: The "values" of many Asian communities are old-fashioned family values.

Yes, indeed. The family value of murdering your daughter because she brought "shame" on the family by dating a Brit. The family value of importing extra wives. The family value of marrying first cousins and producing hordes of children with birth defects (30% of all birth defects on the NHS).

Then we have the "family value" of the father and brothers telling the mother and sisters what she can wear. Then we have the "family value" of Daddy taking on the burden of voting for the entire family. And the family value of only men being allowed into the mosques to pray. And let us not forget the family value of sharia law that they are trying to sneak past the British legislature.

Thanks, but no thanks.

You also add: The values of other asylum seekers are often rather aligned to our ideas of political freedom.

Ah, yes, the heady air of political freedom where they recommend killing males who were born homosexual. Where payola in government is a normal way of life. Where women don't need to worry their shrouded little heads about voting. All "values" they import wholesale into our country and continue to live by.

Multiculturalism is destructive and divisive. Be British or be gone.

Manfarang said...

verity
I thought those of you in the asylum didn't get to vote!

verity said...

Manfarang - I assume you're in Hong Kong and haven't seen the degeneration of Britain under Mad Tony's "multiculturalism".

I'll tell you what: You tell me what I have written that you disagress with and I will respond with a defence of my position.

Posting what you apparently think are toxic witticisms does nothing to further the argument.

Manfarang said...

Verity
I think you are the one being a bit toxic.Just the other day there was a big demonstration in Pakistan against the Red Mosque.Many of the extremes you refer to don't meet with the approval with a lot,I would say most Muslims from south Asia or Muslims from other parts of the world for that matter.

verity said...

No, Manfarang. I was not being toxic. I was trying to respond to a non-post by you, directed at me.

What you have to understand about islam is, it requires that everyone on earth submit to islam. This is a key point. This is the essence. Universal submission to islam.

There are a handful of highly intelligent, highly thoughtful and very unusual muslims who argue against it, but they are a handful of grains of sand in a vast desert.

Islam is not a smorgasbord. And once you're in, you can't get out, as the punishment for apostacy is death. Assuming you, as in Manfarang, are not a muslim, that means you are an apostate.

Why? Because everyone is born a muslim. It is the natural state of the world. You left the religion. You're an apostate. That's a sin. You should die.

This is a very primitive system of thought control designed for a warrior cult. That is why men are allowed four wives. To breed warriors.

This is a cult of destruction and violence and we should not be accommodating it. If they come to our shores, they should be elevating themselves by following our ways; not working on our destruction.

verity said...

By the way, I see the Religion of Peace is on the rampage in the Philippines and S Thailand again.

Manfarang said...

Verity
la ikrah fi'd-din

Stephen Newton said...

Only Norris laughing?

From the Telegraph:

Ken Livingstone even has a jolly suggestion to solve David Cameron's woes: he could stand as a joint Labour and Conservative candidate. "I want to reach out to David Cameron, I can feel David Cameron's pain," he told Nick Ferrari on LBC 97.3FM.

"If he wants a dual candidate, I am happy to do it for him too."

verity said...

Manfarang - Whatever. It looks like Arabic and I don't speak Arabic. (Why would anyone, actually?)

Good suggestion from Ken Livingston.