Thursday, August 16, 2007

Labour Tries to Rig Tory Mayoral Vote

Any doubts I had that Labour are seriously worried by Boris Johnson have been dispelled by the story in the Standard that Labour supporters are being encouraged to register for the Tory Open Primary and vote for one his three opponents. A different kind of politics, Gordon? You're having a giraffe.

47 comments:

David Lindsay said...

That's primaries for you, Iain. How is any of this wrong within the system in question?

Which is why I'm all in favour of primaries. Imagine if the two candidates with the most nominations from a party's branches for PPC or for Leader were then subjected to a binding ballot of every registered voter in the constituency or the country, and that this happened in the course of every Parliament without fail.

The sort of people favoured by central machines would struggle to get on the ballot at all, and certainly wouldn't be selected. And the same is true of each party's several lunatic fringes, who could always then put up under their own steam and see how far they got.

Anonymous said...

If you think they'll be able to muster enough support to throw the primary, you're having a giraffe.

Nice to see the Tories getting het up over a student prank though. Grace under fire, yes?

mitch said...

well they rig all the other votes.

CuriousHamster said...

If you're struggling for a link, the BBC also reported this.

Shameful anti-Tory bias, of course...

That aside, you're quite right that it's no way to for Labour to foster a different kind of politics. No wonder so many people are uninterested in party politics.

Geezer said...

Not exactly a surprise, and the open primary thing was always going encourage this type of attempted manipulation by Labour. You have seen the Kennite morons posting on this blog, to know how scared they are of BJ.

Bob Piper said...

Then why did the half-wit Cameron give them the opportunity? That is, if the Tory Standard can be believed, although my understanding of Iain's position is that we shouldn't pay any attention to these biased media types anyway. Oh no, ... that's only when they print things he doesn't like.

Are the Labour Party quoted in the story, Iain, I don't want you phoning round the editors asking them why they haven't?

Teesbridge said...

It's a £1.50 phone line (VERY Channel 4) - quite an elegant way of getting M'Lord Paul to fund both the Labour AND Conservative campaigns with tax-free, non-dom money, I'd have thought...

Nicky said...

Their fixing the opinion polls too btw.

ezra said...

I'm looking forward to Boris becoming the mayoral nominee, he's sure to deflect attention away from Cameron. Some parts of the media may even come to see him as the de facto Tory leader.

Allan said...

Pathetic of Labour, but the words "it's your own sodding fault" do spring to mind...

vanfuertes said...

Sounds like a silly prank to me, nothing more serious. After all, I REALLY don't think Boris has a chance in this election.

I don't particularly like either of them and I'm not from London so perhaps I'm out of touch, but Livingstone is on the loony Left and Johnson is about 50 years behind the times. However, I'd be willing to bet my bottom dollar on Red Ken. Apart from anything else, better the devil you know.

Tom FD said...

Great! They're four excellent candidates. All this will do is place the runners-up in higher standing, and raise lots more money for the Tory party. Well, fantastic! And to think Labour made a fuss about Tony Lit attending a Labour function!

Ralph said...

Bob asked 'Then why did the half-wit Cameron give them the opportunity?'

Perhaps Cameron knew Labourites were this pathetic and laid a trap for them to fall into.

Anonymous said...

vanfuertes has lost his bottom dollar!

The Hartlepool Monkey would beat livingstone, he is..to coin a phrase
a dead man walking!

BJ said...

Charging £1.50 for ANYONE to take part in the democratic process is a rather, er, "courageous" decision.

Hughes Views said...

Do you really believe everything you read in the papers even in the silly season? At your advanced age you should know better...

english democrat said...

Now Zanulab have been caght red handed its "just a student prank"?
The excuses are so flimsy and halfhearted it could be funny IF it wernt so real!

Ethelred the Unhinged said...

As the Useless Tories have been clever enough to allow any registered voter to express a preference in these primaries, anyone who wants a candidate other than Boris to win is perfectly entitled to vote for that other candidate.

Additionally, there are fraud safeguards in place, we are told.

So, as is so often the case, what, in fact, is the story?

Bob Piper said...

anonymous at 7.36...
"The Hartlepool Monkey would beat livingstone,"

Now what does that tell us about Norris and the Conservative Party. Perhaps anonymous is right, even a monkey would do better than them!

Anonymous said...

Why the Fock should London have a Mayor anyway? Surely this is a NuLab thing and not a Tory idea.

Newmania said...

Conservative Party. Perhaps anonymous is right, even a monkey would do better than them!

Touché Piper how I love an elegant assassination ,the poise the élan , more more more say I .Equal perhaps to your ..
" Same to you mate !" or indeed the immortal "Up yours sonny", so admired by the glittering butterflies of society...Bravo

And speaking of which Lord Dale I blogged this hours before you and whats more sent you a heads up on the BBC web site. I have scooped ye wa boogger and ye canny denee it.Go me !

Anuvver fing , who is this Hugh Muir I have just read his bits in the Guardian and he obviously reads the blogs he is on about you and Cleverly , and I see the BBC apologised for the Redwood footage of fourteen years ago, citing right wing commentators..ie you . Quite right Helen Boarden should be dipped in fat rolled in breadcrumbs fried and eaten by Scottish people . Same as the rest of the Brussels Broadcasting Company...( Usually the C isn`t company)

Anonymous said...

Curioushamster is quite right to link to the BBC's website. Yes, it's the usual anti-Tory bias by the BBC - but it's worse than that. It's an advertisement to anti-Conservatives to join in - in the guise of a news story. Oh, and just in case the Lefties are a bit dim, and can't work out the websites from the article, the BBC even gives a link to The New Statesman!

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/6949619.stm

RELATED INTERNET LINKS
Boris Johnson
Andrew Boff
Victoria Borwick
Warwick Lightfoot
New Statesman

Don't forget the BBC have 'form' in what I'll call a form of vote-rigging. In previous General Elections, the BBC has covertly promoted tactical voting to favour the Labour - or LibDem Parties - in order to "keep the Tories out".

SOMETHING MUST BE DONE TO STOP THE BBC USING OUR TAYPAYERS MONEY TO PROMOTE LEFTY PROPAGANDA!

And all this nonsense from the incumbent nu-nasty party [Labour] indicates they are terrified Boris will walk the London Mayoral election. Good - the sooner the better!

Jill, Teddington

Chris Paul said...

Don't think the phone line is £1.50. It's £1 a minute ... and for the first day or so there were humanoids rather than bots at the end of the "hot" line. Keeping people - particularly non Tory members that's all callers - chattering.

Have Labour managed to select any muppets at open selections for Tory candidates up and down the country? Requiring a mere handful of voters?

NO? This being so how are they going to overcome the London Tory party?

Silly Standard. Silly story. Up with man has drink at drinks party. In the Express btw Coleman gave evidence of Iain Blair's drunkeness in the form of the allegation that he had been witnessed drinking a glass of wine rather quickly after his speech.

This is something I did the last time I spoke after a dinner, having stayed temperate up to that moment. Not what I'd call a dead giveaway of wreckless drunkeness in a free country.

antifrank said...

I have no idea if the story is true or not, but have the following observations:

1) if it is true, Ken Livingstone is being remarkably stupid - he is giving Boris Johnson a huge boost to his credibility

2) if it is true, it seems as good a way as any of transferring funds from Labour supporters to the Conservative party without any significant risk of altering the result

3) if it isn't true, the Conservatives have managed to spin a particularly effective line to attract interest in their open primary (which, incidentally, is an excellent idea).

My bet is on 3)

Newmania said...

Silly Standard. Silly story.

The BBC had it out first Chris and given the bat brain loons that lurk around left wing London politics you are optimistic if you expect any sense from them. At a guess I`d say it was true , they are like a lot of skinhead football thugs ..they like breaking things and making a mess. They would fo it for fun

gaz said...

I have seen the primaries process first hand, and it really is invigorating, we had a selection process for a seat that is way down the tory target list, the hall was full to the rafters, there was no way Labour could have influenced it in any way, and as I said, that was for a small constituency, which is a Labour seat.

The fact is, a London wide primary will have a turnout of several thousand, no way will they be able to muster up the manpower necessary.

bebopper said...

The Standard also tells us that the five black leaders of varius race quangos, who wrote to the Guardian to complain about "the racist Boris Johnson", are all receiving large sums of money from Livingstone. Nuff said.

The good news this evening is that the BBC News and Newsnight previewed Redwood's report (out tomorrow) with proper respect.
Someone must have had a word with the buggers.

Matt Davis said...

We already know from Comrade Livingstone's crude and contemptible attempt to smear Boris Johnson as a racist, using a pilable ethnic press who owe their financial survival to Livingstone's lavish funding, that both he and Labour are scared of a Boris candidacy.Whilst I have no doubt that both Labour, and Livingstone's true political allies in Socialist Action, will be trying to influence the result of the Primary, probably by misusing trade union member's money, there is a built in antidote;

Having made it so very clear to Conservative members in London who it is he fears most Livingstone has in fact made Conservative member's best choice very clear to them and no doubt has considerably increased the chances of Tories both voting and voting for Boris Johnson.

Yak40 said...

Another reminder that to the left power is everything and they'll use every trick, dirty or otherwise, to get it and they never forget that.

The Tories need to pin this on the wall in the bathroom because it appears that very few of them realise it and unless they wake up and get equally focused they'll never win again.

Andrew Boff said...

Iain,
Define "rig" in the context of an open primary?
If any Labour voter would like to vote for me the number is 0906 555 5050... though I suspect that I'm probably a bit too left wing for the NuLab lot.

The Huntsman said...

The primary is a daft, gimcrack gimmick and should be binned.

Sea Shanty Irish said...

Primaries are preferable to nominating conventions or caucuses because they increase participation, which is good for the party and the voters.

Open v close primary is interesting question. Open helps recruit more supporters and persuade more voters, but opens up potential for opponents to crash the party.

In great state of WA we used
to have a "blanket" primary. All voters got same ballot, could only vote for one candidate (if that was number to be elected) in each race, but could "cross-over" between the parties: vote for a Democrat for US Senator but a Republican for Governor. Within each party, candidate with most votes was nominated. Then all party nominees advanced to the general election.

Voters LOVED this system but major parties hated it. So Dems & Reps & even Libs joined together and challenged the blanket primary in federal court. Because Democrats could participate in the Republican primary, and visa versa. And courts struck down the blanket primary.

Crossovers were a real deal under the blanket primary. BUT malicous ones were exceeding rare. Vast majority were geninue supporters of the candidate from the other party, who voted for that candidate a 2nd time in the general election. Which is why CANDIDATES tended to like the blanket primary.

As has been noted, trying to generate malicious crossovers is more damn trouble than it's worth. Hard enough when you spend yer time & money on getting votes for yourself!

Jim said...

Labour Tries to Rig Tory Mayoral Vote

And the evidence to back this theory... As I suspected NONE.

Ive said it once and I shall say it again; making the story the story, rather than the contest itself. This is classic Tory HQ diversion tactics.

The New Statesman is actively encouraging all Londoners to register to vote, and this week the same mag has given all the Tory candidates a free column to express their ideas manifestos and thoughts, Boz didn’t bother by the way.

Before you start throwing stones Mr Dale and Tories et al, I suggest you find out who set up the anti Boz websites, you might get a little surprise; yes nothing to do with the Labour party.

Jim said...

Oh well Ill suppose I just have to tell you as you are too thick to work it out yourselves.

The Labour party had nothing to do with the websites set up to try and scupper Boris. In fact could any of you blue noses please give us a link to the sites. I doubt it because they don’t exist. The web sites the story refers to are the New Statesman magazine itself and http://www.londontorynightmayor.co.uk.

Furthermore there is NO conspiracy, as it was the New Statesman Journ John Harris who openly admitted to setting up the later website, in an article on the 31st July 2006 YES…. Two thousand and six.

So John Harris from the New Statesman set up a website to scupper Boris Johnson in the forth coming mayoral contest. John must have psychic powers as he set the website up 12 months before Boz even became a candidate.

Just in case you need evidence, you can actually request the name of the person who registers a web site from numerous host providers, it’s very easy, but I suppose making up allegations, and believing grassy knoll conspiracy theories is the preferred Tory way.

More evidence… http://www.newstatesman.com/200607310016

Anonymous said...

Some on here dismiss the Conservatives chances of winning the London Mayoral vote.

If it was first past the post, I suspect that Livingstone would not care who the candidate was - but it is not.

Steve Norris did not attract enough second preference and that is where Livingstone is worried. He knows that Boris Johnson will get more second preferences and the Lib Dems less.

One thing about Livingstone, he is no fool. He can see the writing on the wall better than anyone.

I would think that Livingstone is praying for a General Election on the same day - that would boost his chances and knock the Tories chances of at least retaining all of their seats.

However, if the Brown did that, he would be going against all the advice he must have been given post Scottish elections, about different types of voting on the same day !

Letterman said...

It is a bit of a silly system, the primary system in the US is flawed but it stumbles by. The tory system wont even work as well as that because its entirely one sided as this story demonstrates: anyone can vote for the tory candidate whatever their motives, supporter or not.

Hannibal said...

Bob Piper,

"Are the Labour Party quoted in the story, Iain, I don't want you phoning round the editors asking them why they haven't?"

The BBC don't need to quote the Labour Party, they just use their talking point memos verbatim anyway. The BBC is the Labour Party's echo chamber.

Desperate Dan said...

It sounds true to me. After all Labour is the party that spends time and money dreaming up methods of electoral fraud via postal vote; foreign vote; text vote; Evote and bogus votes of every complexion. Labour apparently believe themselves to be unable to win an election by means of a fair contest.

Torymory said...

Well it was inevitable that this would happen. How significant a part it will play in the outcome will depend on how many ordinary London voters register.

I have no evidence of any organised London wide campaign, but I do know that my local Lib Dem Councillors and activists are registering to vote.

I know because several of them have told me how much they are looking forward to the hustings etc!

Not quite sure what CCO mean by "safe guards in place" - are they going to check that people registering are activists for other parties? And even if they spot them, can they prevent them from taking part, given the stated aim that any Londoner can have a vote?

I have to say I am not against Primaries as such but I think they only work if all parties go down this route and they are not open i.e. a voter can only register to vote in one party primary.

Newmania said...

Liked your article this morning Iain but wasnt it much what you had already said on your blog ? In the past its been theother way round ..short of time ?

mutleythedog said...

The open primary is a great idea - its one of the few ideas of recent years which has spurred a greater interest in things like candidate selection...

Theo Blackwell's blog said...

I'm in agreement with many of the comments above, on the strnage decision to have an open primary.

Voters from opposing parties trying to manipulate 'open primaries' is nothing new. In states across America, where you may offically register as a supporter of a political party, Republican activists posing as Democrats (and vice versa) have been known to plump for the candidate they perceive as the most extreme or gaffe-prone in the party nomination process. The £1.50 voting toll aside, I'm not sure there's any real point to this with the Conservative Mayoral Primary - not least because the Tory leadership favourite Boris Johnson already seems to manifest these qualities in abundance.

The Wilted Rose said...

Well, this is proof positive that Labour are now running scared in London, and they reckon the only way to keep Ken in is to sabotage Boris's chances.

It shows how stupid Labour are because Boris will win the primary by and landslide ...

Ken, what are your retirement plans? Anything to do with newts?

Jim said...

Even when presented with the facts its seems that you are all still grassy knoll conspiracy theorists. See “August 17, 2007 2:20 AM” and “August 17, 2007 2:42 AM”.

The websites you are referring to are both from the New Statesman, not any opponent of Boris.

Londoner said...

The London Mayoral election is won on second preferences. Any labour supporters joining the primary will vote for Johnson because he's the easieat to beat in May, 2008. Unless he gets the majority on first preferences, Boris will lose on second preferences.

Andrew Boff in the candidate Labour fears most He will come first or second on first preferences and will obtain his majority on second preferences. That's how Livingstone won the last two elections, on second preferences from Liberals.

Johnson won't get them under any circumstances, but if Andrew Boff is in the race the majority of Liberal Democrat second prefernces will go to him this time round and not Ken Livingstone. For London Tories, electing a Mayor is a serious business, and it is even more serious for Ken Livingstone and his supporters. And, to guarantee his personal survival, Livingstone seriously needs Boris Johnson to be his Tory opponent.

Justine McGuinness said...

We Lib Dems can win this Mayor election, with a decapitation strategy.

Anonymous said...

A few points:

1. A crossover primary creates no benefits for the Labour Party to manipulate, however all your publicity will encourage Labour (and Lib Dem) voters to register to have a bit of fun at the Tories expense.

2. With approx 32,000 Tory members in London it will be interesting to see how many actually vote. I suspect it will mainly be the politically committed. No doubt you will tell us the actuall socre. Boris will win the selection, but there is likely to be viral emails encouraging anti-Tories to back one of the other candidates. Hopefully you will give this publicity to save us anti-Tories time, or if you have any political nous you will try to create some disinformation, though it could back-fire. I will watch your site with interest.

3. Ken is likely to win over Boris. Even in the unlikely event of Ken polling less votes than Boris his second preference vote from Lib Dems, Greens and Respect will outpoll the UKIP (One London) and BNP vote - which will be lower without a Euro election to stir it up to turn out. Indeed, almost all of Green's and Respect will put Ken as 2 and over 60% of the Lib Dems. That should be enough to see him over the line with nearly 55% to Boris 45%.