[Marxism] UK Election: anti war Labour candidates do better

Bob Wood bobwood1 at btopenworld.com
Mon May 9 05:06:03 MDT 2005

PRESS NOTICE: Campaign Group back stronger than everIn the General Election
2005, the average swing against pro-war Labour MPs
was 5.2%, compared with 4.8% for anti-war MPs. The swing against Campaign
Group MPs (often more overtly anti-war) averaged 4.4%.

----- Original Message ----- 
From: LRC Information
To: info at l-r-c.org.uk
Sent: Saturday, May 07, 2005 7:16 PM
Subject: PRESS NOTICE: Campaign Group back stronger than ever


Chair: John McDonnell

Vice Chairs: Maria Exall (CWU NEC), Christine Shawcroft (LP NEC)

Secretary: Simeon Andrews, G10 Norman Shaw South, House of Commons, London,

Treasurer: Kate Ahrens (UNISON NEC)



Campaign Group back stronger than ever!

The Socialist Campaign Group of Labour MPs returns stronger and more united
to the House of Commons, determined to bring to an end the Blairite policies
that cost Labour so many seats in the Election.

The Campaign Group also survived the New Labour-inspired slump better than
other comrades. They gained an average of 500 more votes than other Labour
MPs, and the swing against them averaged only 4.4% compared with an average
of 5.1% against other sitting Labour MPs (Full analysis below - including
regional variations).

In a major push to influence the Government's agenda in the new Parliament
the newly organised Labour Left has immediately convened an assembly of key
Left representatives in the PLP, on Labour's NEC, constituency parties and
trade unions to plan its strategy in the new situation facing the Government
of a significantly reduced majority.

John McDonnell MP said:

"The conference convened by the Labour Representation Committee will provide
the forum for the Labour Left to determine the policies it will seek to
promote, and the policies it will oppose in order to move on from the Blair


Notes for eds:

John McDonnell MP, Chair of the Labour Representation Committee (LRC) will
be chairing a conference for the Labour left at the TUC on Saturday 16th
July entitled 'Time for Real Labour'. Speakers include Tony Benn, Michael
Meacher MP, Katy Clark MP (newly elected Labour left MP for North Ayrshire &
Arran) and other MPs and trade union leaders. For more information see

Full analysis below:

While the average incumbent Labour candidate in England & Wales (I have
excluded Scotland due the complications of boundary changes) lost an average
of 3182 votes and saw a 5.1% swing against them. Campaign Group MPs received
only 2676 fewer votes and a 4.4% swing against.

In London, with the highest concentration of Campaign Groups MPs (eight),
Labour saw a large swing against it of 7.8%. For the Campaign Group MPs the
average swing against was only 6.6%. Campaign Group Chair, John McDonnell,
had only a 4.1% swing.

In the Yorkshire & Humber region, with four Campaign Group incumbents (Mike
Wood, Michael Clapham, Ann Cryer, Austin Mitchell) standing for re-election,
the average swing was 4% against Labour. The average for the four Campaign
Group MPs was only 1.7% against. Indeed both Wood and Cryer actually
increased their majorities.

In Norwich, a city with two MPs reflecting two very different wings of the
Party, Home Secretary Charles Clarke represented the safe seat of Norwich
South, while Ian Gibson, Campaign Group rebel, was defending the more
marginal Norwich North.

A swing of 7.1% cut Clarke's majority by over 5000 votes. Gibson, with a
majority from 2001 of only 5863 votes would likely have faced a recount on
an equal swing. However, the voters of Norwich North returned Gibson with a
near-equal majority of 5459. Likewise in Luton, where Kelvin Hopkins (Luton
North) survived a swing of 4.5% against, compared with his pro-war Luton
South neighbour, Margaret Moran, who lost nearly half her majority on a 5.6%

In the ten Labour-held Birmingham seats, the average swing against Labour
was 8.4%, losing one seat, whereas Lynne Jones held on comfortably,
absorbing a small 2.3% swing against her.

The Birmingham situation was reflected in Liverpool, where there are five
Labour-held central Liverpool seats. Bob Wareing conceded only 628 votes
from his majority, compared to an average in the other four seats of 4556.

In London, with the highest concentration of Campaign Groups MPs (eight),
Labour saw a large swing against of 7.8%. For the Campaign Group MPs the
average swing against was only 6.6%. Campaign Group Chair, John McDonnell,
had only a 4.1% swing.

John Cryer the only London Campaign Group casualty and MP for Hornchurch
since 1997, lost with a swing of only 2.7%. The only other Campaign Group
loss, Phil Sawford in Kettering, was defeated with a swing of 3.6%. Both of
these results were better than the average 5.1% swing against Labour

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