Sunday, 16 February 2014

A poser for the opinion researchers

On the same day as Labour were successful in having another white not-young male elected in Greater Manchester, there was a council by-election in Birmingham which went against all the prognostications. Kingstanding ward has long been a safe Labour seat.

  • Gary Sambrook, Conservative  1571 (47%; +7.3%)
  • Lorraine Grundy, Labour 1433 (42.8%; -6.9%)
  • UKIP 266 (7.9%; +7.9%)
  • LD Graham Lippiatt 43 (1.3%; -0.7%)
  • NF 33 (1.0%; +0.2%)
  • Majority 138 Con gain from Lab.
  • Percentage change is since 2012

Three points stood out for me:

  1. According to the BBC report, Kingstanding covers more than one quarter of the Erdington constituency of Jack Dromey, a high-profile MP in his own right, and even more as the husband of the Labour deputy leader, Harriet Harman;
  2. The presence of both UKIP and the National Front did not hurt the Conservative candidate's progress;
  3. While Cllr Sambrook's hard work over the years in contesting the seat was a key factor in his success, it shows that Labour cannot take even safe seats for granted.

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