Thursday, January 29, 2009

Didsbury West: Three-Horse Race With All To Play For

Paul Rowen MP probably won't pilot his own F16 as he lands on the good ship SS Strasbourg to declare the war over. But is it by all accounts a big day for him.

Meanwhile in Didsbury West we have a big day for four candidates with a council by-election that may or may not break the mouldy Leechy mould.

Anything can happen in the next nine hours.

West Didsbury - potentially the most Tory ward in the entire city - could return the comedic upstart Mr Bean.

West Didsbury - potentially the most cool headed and sensible and well-educated ward in the whole city - could return Labour's Dave Ellison, the philosophers' choice.

West Didsbury - already boasting little and large Lib Dem muppets as councillors - could add a third, even though she can't yet do joined up writing and candidly admits she's so useless that she'll achieve nothing if she is elected.

If the Tories make ANY progress this is good news for Labour's PPC Lucy Powell's upcoming assault on the seat.

Leech is there largely because Yasmin Zalzala (twice) and, having knifed her, himself borrowed a vast number of Conservative-minded votes. Any kind of recovery for them must be seen as good news. Hopefully not a win, but even that would see Leech and his muppet army on the run. Their majority is just the number of the beast plus one, 667. And that one ain't Leech as he STILL doesn't live in his constituency!

Obviously if Labour are rewarded for a hard-fought campaign with any kind of progress that too would provide evidence of the shaky ground John "Hospital Hoax" Leech could be buried in next time out. Clearly a win would be fantastic news for the people of the two Didsburys and Withington - currently with no representation other than misery mongers and let downs on the Council.

It is a big ask. But all power to Dave and Dave in unsettling and/or unseating the Lib Dems in Didsbury West and Manchester Withington. Off now to join the fray for most of the last nine hours of voting. Get yourself down here to lend a hand!

UPDATE 09:47/10:03: As one demented commentator told us in the wee small hours - with SEVEN, count 'em, posts in quick succession, kinda pretending to be different people - the Lib Dems held the seat with an increased share of the vote. There was no UKIP and the Tory vote somethingly collapsed. As did the Greens. Indeed one might argue that the more work the Tories do in this seat the less votes they get. Which is peculiar. Like their candidate. And their agent Adlard. Perhaps Bean's not the right man for the PPC role after all. Bring on Bhatti!!

Didsbury West has chosen to be represented by a councillor who told the people at the WDRA hustings - in which she trailed in a sad fourth of four - that as a councillor she'd be able to get nothing done whatsoever. But this is of course par for the course in a by-election where the incumbent have around 50% of the vote at the outset.

In an usual display of anxiety/commitment John Leech MP was on the patch all day. Taking numbers at polling stations well into the evening - which I'd have thought would've reminded people what a tosser he is - and lurching round the still benighted avenues. John Leech is a full time campaigner ... for John Leech. Smoke and mirrors and John Bull printing sets.


Anonymous said...


Have the Fib Dems been beaten? Any updates?

Chris Paul said...

Don't know Nigel. I thought you were going to tell me?

Anonymous said...

Withington Liberal Democrats were tonight celebrating a swing of 3.3from Labour in the Didsbury West by-election. Lib Dem candidate Lianne Williams polled 1439 votes (55.6%) and won with a majority of 801. There was also a 6% swing from the Tories.


Anonymous said...

Labour and Tory alike took a hell of a beating from the Lib Dems. Calling them Fib Dems may be clever but doesn't win votes.

Lib Dems 56%, up 9%
Labour 25%, up 2%
Conservatives 13%, down 4% Green 7%, down 4%
UKIP no candidate, down 3%

Anonymous said...

Bloody Hell!

Lucy powell took a hell of a beating! I hate Fib DEMS,


Anonymous said...

This is bad... v... bad. i'd have hoped that Labour would have done better. As a Labour voter / supporter in the ward this is a disgrace. Lucy was the big gun and was in all the leaflets. Bad news for Labour... I am going back to Green... only way possible.

What now here?????????

Anonymous said...

What has this to do with Paul Rowen? Isn't he Rochdale's MP?

Anonymous said...

Yes - also to do with Rochdale's useless MP!

I hate Fib Dems! Nigel C.

Chris Paul said...

All this has to do with Paul Rowen is that he was allegedly having his big day in the Council of Europe - chosen above all others to represent the Liberal tendancy. Or not as some believe. It was a link, a segue, a device to keep the reader enthralled.

Anyway, many thanks for all the information overnight. Seven posts from one anon pretending to be various ahem Labour supporters etc is quite a record. A right Charley if you ask me.

Play Up Pompeii said...

Quote - "All this has to do with Paul Rowen is that he was allegedly having his big day in the Council of Europe"

So Labour take a pasting in Didsbury because the MP for Rochdale is in Strasbourg? Have I got that right?

The word 'floundering' comes strangely to mind.

Phil Murray said...

How can you interpret this as a pasting for Labour? it's the second safest Lib Dem seat in the city and their vote went up by 9% - but the Labour vote was up by 2% as well! Disaster for the Tories though. First time they worked hard in a local election campaign for years, and their vote went down!

Play Up Pompeii said...

How can you not interpret it as a pasting for Labour?

If this isn't, then what would be?

LOL's brilliiant analysis was "if the Tories make ANY progress this is good news for Labour's PPC Lucy Powell's upcoming assault on the seat".

They didn't. It isn't.

All this in a "Three-Horse Race With All To Play For".

Anonymous said...

At least we can all celebrate the continued Tory flatline in Manchester, no?

Play Up Pompeii said...

I suspect that our gracious host won't be celebrating the Tory flatline. He was fully expecting and wishing for a Tory surge.

Can't wait for the spin to be put on this result. The logic and syntax will be something to behold and gasp at in wonder.

Chris Paul said...

Doh and double doh! Rowen mention is a link from the last post, nothing more, nothing less.

It's clearly not a pasting for Labour as our share of vote grew. But a little disappointing certainly. And technically impressive demonstration that John Leech can run a local govt by-election better than some of his colleagues.

Anything other than this kind of result would have been a great debacle. It is business as usual is all. Achieved I think - though I didn't see the boxes being opened - and haven't seen the turn out by ED or comparison with last time - by a strong turn out in what used to be Leechland and is now Li-Land.

On the Tories. I would prefer Tories to vote for Tories and not lend their votes to Lib Dems. That would give us more chance of winning seats in some of these wards and strangely enough I think the residents would be better off with a Labour rep than with some cipher for Leech's imperial power who has hardly an idea in her head, is like a rabbit in headlights under questioning, and says emphatically that councillors can achieve nothing, and what's more is 100% correct in her own case.

The Tories will have to work this out for themselves. Their paperwork was sub-LD sloganeering, fibs and even a dodgy bar chart saying they were the only ones who could beat Labour? Or beat the Tories, I mean Libs, or something like that.

Very unsophisticated and very unconvincing really. Didn't point at a single pothole. Instead fibs about trams and promises about awnings few care about.

Bean is Bright but weird. And then there's Adlard. Shoot foot in self.

Who will get the PPC job for the boys in blue? Not Bean at this rate.

Get gasping you cowardly troll you.

Play Up Pompeii said...


benchilltory said...

i think that you may be right about mr Bean,too nice by half,i think the tories need an older attack dog as a candidate.
i think that in order to get a foothold back in the town hall they need to unleash the dogs of war on the dog poo pothole brigade in most wards.
i might not want a labour run council but it would be better than the nincompoops who would bankrupt the city and send council tax bills through the roof

Chris Paul said...

Cheers BHT. You are absolutely right about the Lib Dem incompetents. It is bad enough having one MP of theirs squirrelling away a huge fighting fund with what appear to be dodgy print deals but may of course be entirely legitimate fundraising efforts - with no notifiable donations strangely.

As an old attack dog yourself you could perhaps stick your papers in for the Withington vacancy? Give us a lift in shifting the bad rubbish? But don't send in the attack dog John Kershaw, he'd crash and burn, as he's not very nice.

I'm not sure if the supposed lefty Fred Sylvester (NB not Lord Sylevester) Tory MP for these parts until 1987 has a grave yet or not but if he has one he might well be rolling in it.

Not much on google for sorry old Fred. But mention in some handy reminisces here from Withington Distorter founder Bob Waterhouse who went on to found a few more titles in his time.

Get A Grip said...

At 12.41pm on polling day you announced that West Didsbury was still a three horse race and were off to campaign for the last 9 hours.

It seems that you must have single-handedly turned the ward into a Labour loss by 801 votes. That's nearly 90 voters an hour you were driving into the arms of the Lib Dems.

Well done! I didn't realise that anyone could knock on that many doors. I applaud your indefatigability.

Chris Paul said...

Walthomstow boy Fred Sylvester does have a wiki stub after all. And he's apparently 85.5 years old and still kicking. Barrister and advertising executive. Good peerage material I'd have thought ... but no sign of ennoblement. Shame on you Maggie Thatcher!

Chris Paul said...

Er, GAG. "Three horse race" or more usually "two horse race" and "all to play for" are of course well known election day cliches. The Lib Dems used the famous "it's a straight choice" as well. While the Tory tried "Only Tories can beat ..." and the dodgy bar chart routine. While Lib Dems used bar charts from the general election to imply closeness, dismiss the Tories, and stiffen their voter's resolve.

In reality the majority of almost 700 was I think second safest Lib Dem seat in the city. Leech knocked out his vote very successfully, Labour made some small progress, and the Tories and Greens lost votes by exposing themselves with an actual full campaign.

You're displaying signs of the anal and non sequitor prattlings of one of your BANNED trollish predecessors. Separated at birth?

Get A Grip said...

It was a non-non-sequitor. (Does that make it a sequitor?). It was a direct response to the headline of this remarkably wide-of-the-mark thread "Didsbury West: Three-Horse Race With All To Play For" posted in the very afternoon of the elction.

I could have pointed out that in this supposed 3 horse race, the Labour Psrty were actually nearer to 4th place thean there were to first. But I didn't.

Anonymous said...

Shock!! horror!!! the fib dems actually won. I bet their recycling scheme is going to have to get going quickly with the amount of paper work that has been through the door. At least one leaflet every day, don't they have better things to do with the money?

Chris Paul said...

It will be interesting when someone outs copies of all the different leaflets end to end and see if they reach to the premises of WPS - the "Withington Printing Society" whose main business, reputedly, is actually laundry rather than printing.

The Lib Dems exhorted contributions from members saying they were going to spend "thousands" on their campaign and so they did. Which should be rather alarming for the returning officer and indeed for the Commissioner and Serjeant at Arms who must surely be investigating WPS-gate by now. Given the expenses limit. Is Team Leech going to perjure itself again on their election expenditure?

In my view expenses returns for elections should include a sample of every piece of print along with the numbers. Those scrutinising them returns would then be in a better position to see whether anyone is printing money as it were. Or generally fiddling.

Anonymous said...

And why do they spend so much when they are virtually certain to win, even with yet another thicko?

Get A Grip said...

My my. The grapes are tasting sour today.

"Certain to win"? I thought it was a "Three Horse Race".

With your record on election funding sources, Chris, I'd keep very quiet on the subject.

benchilltory said...

The trouble with the manchester Lib dems is that their only appeal at elections is that they are not the labour party.They have been the only oppossion in Manchester for upwards of 20 years, but what have they done and what do they stand for.
i quite like the good old fashioned Liberals, never more do we need a traditional liberal voice.however the lib dems are a complete nonesense,you get a different brand of Lib dems depending on which part of the country you happen to live in.In Manchester they do seem to have a lot of money to conduct their campaigns!
I think a typical lib dem member dislikes the idea of trades unions so they dont like the labour party and they are too guilt ridden about how their own circumstanes improved due to Thatcher that they wont vote tory
lib dems are however shit hot when it comes to dog poo

Chris Paul said...

GAG: Yeah it was a "Three Horse Race". In the Lib Dems second safest seat. That's correct.

And if you are going to repeat this nonsense about my own election funding you might like to :

(a) Go to room 117 in the Town Hall and inspect my returns for 2003, 2004 and 2006;

(b)) Give you full name and address;

(c) Point out the problem(s) you allege exist.

While you're there you should also take a gander at Mr Leech's 2005 election expenses return which is absolutely hocus.

Incredibly, even in an ultra safe seat, Lib Dems apparently planned for and spent way in excess of the limit for this by-election telling supporters they would be spending "thousands" and that they should donate.

Presumably on a "no names no pack drill" basis. Only one donation - apart from dribbles from JL - has been owned up to in the last three-and-a-half years.

That being from a man who gave £2500 and immediately became a candidate around 7 miles from where he lives and works.

He being a solicitor would not presumably put up with a no names no pack drill basis. Though others in that line seem more easy going.

I can feel my deleting finger twitching anyway as GAG and PUP and "anonymous" too repeat the superior syntax, analism and stupidity of the banned muppet EHC.

Get A Grip said...

Having absolutely no doubt that you will indeed delete this, here goes anyway.

And having spent a couple of hours reading through past threads just to see what standards you set for yourself by complaining about the conduct of others.

It would seem that your election campaigns were funded (indirectly) by rather generous donations from property companies.

I have absolutely no doubt that these will not show up in your election returns as they appear to have been laundered through the constituency Labour Party.

The questions you have been asked in the past have not been answered.

Why did this amount of generous corporate giving only happen in Manchester?

If it was from a general appeal to business people in Manchester, why did it only get answered by property developers?

And to all that I ask my own question. Why did you personally subsequently openly support the business interests of the very company that had been most generous in its contributions?

Get A Grip said...

I forgot the other point.

OK, enlighten me. In exactly what way could this by-election be honestly described as a three horse race?

Chris Paul said...

"Honestly"? You're an odd fish.

We're talking campaign slogans and cliched twaddle here. Lampooning it rather.

Have you got no idea in your head whatsoever? And no sense of humour? Didn't I say "It's a big ask"?

And didn't Adlard's Tory boy actually run an extraordinary last minute bar chart? Claiming that the "latest Didsbury West poll" showed that Mr Bean had overtaken Labour in what therefore became a "two horse race" ;-)

The deeply dishonest Adlard Tory camp also followed Lib Dem tradition in running an endorsement from the other side.

Apparently from the other side. Lib Dem Sajjad Karim MEP endorsed Bean. Problem being he became a Tory when he didn't manage to win top slot for his last party ... thanks to all the Tory crooks in Europe he may yet be top of their list.

Get A Grip said...

You must be joking if you want us all to believe that you were joking.

Although I have noticed that every time your predictions, excuses or statements prove to be absolute bollocks (which is more often than not) you claim that you were using some form of high satire and that anyone who points out your 'misspeakings' is lacking a sense of humour.

"Thursday, January 29, 2009
Didsbury West: Three-Horse Race With All To Play For". You forgot to mention that it was a three horse race for 2nd place!

I would re-read those tea leaves if I were you.

Chris Paul said...

For pity's sake you cowardly custard "GAG". You really are an IGNORANT, HUMOURLESS, ANAL MUPPET now aren't you? You don't seem to know your election cliches from you elbow.

For this to have actually been a three horse race in terms of being close the Tory would had to take 3-400 off fibby Li-anne. And then Labour would have had to take 150 or so off fibby Lianne too.

These things really ain't that likely really now are they?, though they are amusing thought experiments for the lively blogger.

Instead of the above the Tory gave away votes by exposing his "ideas".

Have you ever actually been involved in an election campaign? Do you understand the Lib Dem predeliction - in this case aped by the Tories too - for the mythic THR?? If you don't get that you need to go away and revise before coming back.

Get A Grip said...

You make my point remarkably well.

It's not me that was arguing that it was a three horse race. If memory serves me well> It was, in fact, you.

And not for any predictive purposes, but to use your waning influence in a deliberate attempt to manipulate the result by basically telling a total porkie.

So I agree with the figures you are quoting above. That's why you were talking bollocks. Plus ca change, as they say in Collyhurst.

Anonymous said...

You still haven't commented on those comments about the property company channelling money into Labour party coffers to fund your campaign.

I don't know if that's true - is it?