Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Labour Gives Up on Norwich North

Labour appears to have given up on winning Norwich North back from the Conservatives. Yesterday, the Eastern Daily Press's political editor Chris Fisher was called by Harriet Harman to chew over the Norfolk political fat. Three times he asked her if Labour would win back Norwich North and three times she refused to answer.
Labour deputy leader Harriet Harman later declined to predict that their party will regain the Norwich North seat lost to Tory Chloe Smith in the by-election last July.

Ian Gibson secured a majority of over 5000 in the seat for Labour in the 2005 general election. The constituency has since been made more favourable to the party by boundary changes. But Ms Harman rejected three opportunities, in an interview with the EDP, to say that Labour was confident of overturning Ms Smith's 7438 by-election majority and re-capturing the seat. It was not for her “to second-guess” the local electorate, she said.

This surprised Norwich South MP Charles Clarke, who said that in his opinion, Labour did have “a good chance” of regaining the seat.

Asked if Labour's campaigning in Norwich and Norfolk could be hindered by Mr Clarke's often expressed adverse criticism of the prime minister, Ms Harman replied: “Charles recognises that the Labour Party has made its choice, and that it is 100pc behind Gordon. Charles accepts that, is a Labour man, and doesn't want to see Cameron in No 10.”

Mr Clarke, the former home secretary, confirmed this in saying that “in a choice between Gordon Brown and David Cameron running the economy, Gordon wins by a mile”. But he added: “It doesn't mean I think I was wrong in saying Labour's chances would be better under another leader.”

This is another example of Labour cock up. Fisher had expected to be called by Ed Balls, who is familiar with the Norfolk political landscape and is often seen in Norwich, supporting the Canaries at Carrow Road. Balls, however, was too busy so the phone call was left to Harman. I suspect the Norwich North Labour candidate will be spitting feathers at how his campaign has been undermined by Ms Harman.

Chloe Smith, on the other hand, will be gruntled.


DespairingLiberal said...

One of the best LOL moments so far was Charles Clarke last night on the Green trying to say how much he thought Brown was the right man to be PM. You could see profound distaste and scepticism written all over his face. What amazes me though is why on earth he puts himself forwards for an interview in those circumstances?

Anonymous said...

Are you saying that Charles Clarke is the Norfolk political fat that Harman has been chewing?.

Englishman said...

Seems the McLabour Scottish Raj are going out with a bang before they are booted out of power in England forever.

Unelected, Unaccountable Scottish First Minister of England Gordon Broon, Jim Murphy, Wee Dougie, Alistair Darling, all sitting together for their last hurrah and a first planted question by a McLabour Scottish Raj MP.

Thatsnews said...

Unless Harman WANTS the Labour candidate to lose?

Norfolk Blogger said...

Labour's candidate is a far better choice than their by-election candidate. I would expect Chloe Smith to win, but with a majority of about 3000, and if the Tories do pootly in government, I would expect her tenure to be short.

Mirtha Tidville said...

Hattie is a closet Tory, planted deep in Liebour many years ago.....Her hour is approaching now and she will be making as many pronouncements and appearances as she can in order to ensure that as many votes as possible are lost to Liebour...

Three cheers and a Croix de Guerre for Hattie folks..

Anonymous said...

Clarke is not that secure in Norwich South either.

admin said...

'It was not for her “to second-guess” the local electorate,'

Seems reasonable to me!