Saturday, January 30, 2010

Quitters Not Fighters

On Wednesday it was Ian Pearson. Yesterday it was John McFall. Today it is Don Touhig. Labour MPs are falling like ninepins at the moment. I haven't got the total who are leaving the sinking ship quitting, but it must be getting on for 80 or 90 by now - that's a quarter of the total.

Also interesting to note is that where they are being replaced by all women shortlists, in many cases only 3 or 4 women are applying.

Would all this be happening if they expected to win the next election?

Mind you, the latest YouGov poll in today's Telegraph doesn't make very happy reading. It shows the Tories down to 38% and Labour up to 31 - real hung parliament territory. An Ipsos Mori poll also shows a similar lead of eight points. Although yesterday the Angus Reid poll showed a lead twice as big. You pays your money...

21 comments:

Scan said...

Iain I'm afraid Cameron's honeymoon period is over and all he's been doing for the past few months is coming across as shifty, which doesn't help the swing voters who just want shot of the lunatic Brown. I would go as far as to say Cameron's actually becoming a liability for the Tories. Like Obama's journey, the closer he gets to power the more watered down his potential to be a maverick reformist get and the more the general public realise, in actual fact, nothing much is going to change.

Bill Quango MP said...

John McFall. When he appears on TV the caption at the bottom reads John McFall - Government Mouthpiece.
Retiring to his villa before the civil wars break out.

Victor, NW Kent said...

I have been very defensive of Cameron and his team but it is clear that their performance is slackening off.

Too many minor messages, too many unnecessary messages, too many counter intuitive messages, too few star performers, too many conflicting messages. Too many messages altogether - the message that is needed is that Brown and new Labour have made a mess of the war in Afghanistan, of our public finances and of education.

Memories that - repeat it without variance.

Have shadow cabinet members properly briefed before they appear on TV. Several of them are unable to explain lucidly the aspects of Tory policy that will inevitably be discussed.

Look at Balls and Cooper - they can appear at the drop of the hat and spout an unchanging party line. They may be talking bull but they encourage the rump of Labour's support.


WV= excroto

Norfolk Blogger said...

Remember the phrase "Chicken Run" in 1997 ? I seem to recall Dorrell, Ammes, and several others taking advantage of boundary changes to "move" seats in order not to defend Tory marginals. Its nothing new Iain, just that there are not really significant boundary changes for Labour to take advantage of this time.

Plaid Gwersyllt said...

First I'd heard of Touhig going where did that come from?

Southerner said...

I despair that the Tories have completely lost the plot on finance and taxation. Last week I read Osborne said that public sector budget reductions could be achieved without increasing unemployment. This beggars belief. Instead of constantly trimming to play to the immediate audience it is about time we had a simple, honest explanation of how and where we will cut the size of Government. People aren't fooled by the present fudges and that is one reason the Tories are falling in the polls. The present approach makes the tories look as shifty as Labour.

R Nosgrove said...

I know many people who will vote Conservative but none who will do so with any real enthusiasm or conviction that anything will change.

The top priority is to remove Brown and, if possible, to damage Labour so badly that they remain out of contention for many years - preferably permanently.

People are fearful of splitting the anti-Labour vote and as voting Tory is the only way to ensure the above goal, they will hold their noses and do so.

Votes for the minor parties (and I include the LimpDems here) will come at the following election, when Cameron has failed to listen or deliver.

I sometimes wonder if Cameron is determined to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. He's coming perilously close to doing so.

English Conservatives said...

With such a slender lead in the polls, it looks as though we're going to need English Votes on English Laws.

Gendeau said...

At the time of the last leadership election I didn't really take an interest as I didn't know much about the candidates. Neither seemed likely to become PM, so...

But it is now clear that you chose the wrong leader.

DING ('Dave is not Gordon') is clearly insufficient to motivate the voters.

You lost my vote over the cast iron guarantee con trick.

I have heard nothing to make me reconsider voting for your party (with a peg on my nose, or otherwise).

The Tory party,as displayed to us plebs, has no backbone, no principles, no differences from nulaba, little point...except DING.

And DING is not enough

JH Jones said...

Don Toughig was the most vocal MP in keeping expenses secret from the public. Good riddance!

Tom Harris said...

Don Touhig will be 63 this year and, assuming the parliament is 4 years long, would be 67 by the election after next. John McFall is already 65. And yet you're claiming that their retirement is a sign of defeatism?

Desperate stuff.

Moriarty said...

Cameron should give up on attacking Brown (not that he does much) and concentrate his fire on his true opponent: nthe BBC. It seems as if Andrew Neil has now read the internal memo. His "interview" with Eric Pickles last week was a disgrace and is the final straw for me. I won't be renewing my BBC licence. And if they come after me for it I'll see them in court. Happily.

John said...

Iain,

I told you months ago to stop being complacent. Although I want a Tory win I hate it when tory politicians talk as if May 6th is a shoe in.

People hate to hear talk like that.

Do what Tony Blair did in 1997. Don't talk up your chances of winning as a lot of your supporters may stop at home.

jbw said...

Scan said...
"Iain I'm afraid Cameron's honeymoon period is over and all he's been doing for the past few months is coming across as shifty, which doesn't help the swing voters who just want shot of the lunatic Brown."

Maybe Cameron has looked over the abyss and realised that taking over from Brown is a really, really poisonous chalice that he would rather not have. Much better to let Brown win again and wait for the IMF to be brought in to do the dirty work.

That way he has a chance of more than one term.

Windsor Tripehound said...

John @2:54pm said...

talk as if May 6th is a shoe in.


< Pedant mode>
It's shoo in, as in moving on a group of animals
< /Pedant mode>

Anonymous said...

just noticed director of the labour friends of Isreal has been selected in a very winnable seat. Where there is a will there is a way...

Anonymous said...

You can add David Clelland MP (Tynebridge) also selected for Gateshead to your list.

I think the disappearing of Labour MPs is partly generational. Several are old enough to have done 20+ years and will get a decent pension. They are basically not looking forward to having Parliament more regulated and less like a private club.

Also the Blairites with outside interests like Patricia Hewitt wil earn more in the private sector than staying as an MP.

Chris Paul said...

Bit daft this Iain. Some are of course retiring (or being blocked) over expenses problems. Others have done their 20 years or in cases much more, including a big slice and they are also at or around retirement age.

"In many cases only 3 or 4 women are applying"? Really? If that is the case anywhere there may be very good reasons. But if it's "many cases" can you please provide a list of say the top 20 of these?

What is the number and proportion of Tories who exeunt stage right?

The Angus Reid polling is utter twaddle in a series of twaddly polls. None of them give more than an impression anyway.

Scan said...

JBW, I agree that might be the case, I just can't bring myself to think of it. I hear Canada's nice at this time of the century...or Australia...or being swept under a slow moving combine harvester...

John said...

Windsor Tripehound @4:46pm said...

< Pedant mode>
It's shoo in, as in moving on a group of animals
< /Pedant mode>

Thanks. I've never written this before and had no idea where the expression came from. We learn something new every day!

Hairy Arsed Bloke said...

I have long doubted that the Conservative would win the next General Election. If there was a serious chance that they would, Brown wouldn’t hold one. (Note on shopping list: buy more tin foil.)

However, why should Cameron want to win? Whoever is in power will have to face the same problems and the inevitable outcome is going to hurt and it’s going to hurt a LOT. It will be far better to have it explode in Labours face than have the Conservatives be associated with pain as soon as they get in.

A sound strategy would be lose by a margin just large small enough to let Labour have power, but be able to win a vote of no confidence, with the help of other parties, later. Then Labour will be rightly associated with the pain and the Conservative with doing the cure.