Glasgow Hillhead is one of the few Tory safe seats in Glasgow but this by-election comes at a tumultuous time for the Conservatives and Labour who have both fallen behind the SDP-Liberal Alliance in the polls. The vacant seat attracted the nation’s attention after Roy Jenkins, the de-facto leader of the SDP, decided to try and regain a place in Parliament through Hillhead. Can the Tories hold on to the seat, can the SDP get Jenkins back into Parliament or will Labour come through the middle and get a much needed boost?
Parties and Candidates:
Conservative – Gerry Malone
SDP – Roy Jenkins
Labour – David Wiseman
SNP – George Leslie
The 1982 Glasgow Hillhead By-Election marked former Labour Minister Roy Jenkins’ return to Parliament as de-facto leader of the newly formed SDP. The SDP, a centrist breakaway from the Labour Party, were performing well in the polls and at the time of the by-election, many considered Jenkins to be the Prime Minister in waiting. This changed just weeks later after the Falklands War and the revival of fortunes for the Conservatives. This campaign was an important moment in Scottish politics and in the history of the SDP.
Wales overwhelmingly rejected a devolved Assembly in 1979 by a margin of 80%-20% but after Tony Blair won the general election of May 1997, devolution was firmly back on the table. Labour and the Liberal Democrats are pushing for a yes vote and though they don’t think the plans go far enough, Plaid Cymru has reluctantly accepted Labour’s proposals for a National Assembly. Meanwhile the ‘Just Say No’ campaign is mainly made up of Conservatives but was formed by dissident Labour members, Carys Pugh and Betty Bowen, in the working class Labour stronghold of the Rhondda. They are less well organised than the establishment backed Yes for Wales campaign but are nevertheless confident of victory. Can the Yes campaign win in Wales or will the No side deal Tony Blair and his New Labour government their first setback?
Yes For Wales Campaign
Ron Davies (Labour)
Dafydd Wigley (Plaid Cymru)
Peter Hain (Labour)
Leighton Andrews (Labour)
Richard Livsey (Liberal Democrats)
Just Say No Campaign
Nick Bourne (Conservative)
Carys Pugh (Labour)
Betty Bowen (Labour)
Tim Williams (Labour)
Robert Hodge (Conservative)
Devolution in Wales and Scotland celebrates its twentieth anniversary this year and for Wales, this campaign is where it started. The campaign was hard fought and in the end, the Yes campaign clinched victory by the slimmest of margins. Devolution is still a hot topic in Wales, with some wanting to restrict the powers of the Assembly and others supporting increased powers for Wales.
The growth of Euroscepticism in Britain has resulted in this referendum. David Cameron has sought to renegotiate Britain’s place in the EU but many think he hasn’t done enough. The battle lines are drawn and Britain’s political heavyweights are ready to tackle the biggest issue in British politics. Will Britain vote to remain in the EU or will they vote to upset the establishment and undo fourty years of European integration?
Boris Johnson (Conservative)
Michael Gove (Conservative)
Gisela Stuart (Labour)
Nigel Farage (UKIP)
Britain Stronger in Europe
David Cameron (Conservative)
George Osborne (Conservative)
Alan Johnson (Labour)
Stuart Rose (Conservative)
Three years ago, the EU Referendum changed everything in British politics. The campaign was exciting, it engaged millions of voters and in the end leave won 52%-48%. Brexit has dominated British politics since that result in 2016 and this campaign was where it all started!
Just weeks after achieving a substantial majority for the Labour Party in Carmarthen at the 1966 General Election, Megan Lloyd-George died of cancer. The by-election in the seat is proving to be much closer than many expected as criticism of the Labour government over local pit closures, rural issues and their treatment of Welsh speaking communities has added pressure to an already unpopular Labour candidate’s campaign. The seat has traditionally been a battle between Labour and the Liberals but Plaid Cymru are on the march in this largely Welsh speaking constituency and their President, Gwynfor Evans, is their candidate in the by-election. Can he pull off a historic victory for the Welsh nationalist party by going from third place to first and winning them their first MP or can Prys Davies hold on for Labour?
Parties and Candidates:
Labour – Gwilym Prys Davies
Plaid Cymru – Gwynfor Evans
Liberal – Hywel Davies
Conservatives – Simon Day
The 1966 Carmarthen By-Election was a pivotal moment in the modern history of Wales as it saw Plaid Cymru elect their first MP to Parliament. It is often considered to be a turning point in the political direction of Wales, with many maintaining that Plaid Cymru’s victory in Carmarthen laid the foundations for devolution in Wales.
After months of crisis in Westminster, all eyes are on Peterborough for one of the most important by-elections in recent history. The city’s disgraced Labour MP was forced out by a public petiton and all parties are now scrambling to take the seat. The brand new Brexit Party are on the march in this heavily leave voting Labour/Tory marginal. Can Farage’s party get their first MP within eight weeks of launching or will the main parties hold on?
Parties and Candidates:
Labour – Lisa Forbes
Brexit Party – Mike Greene / Nigel Farage
Conservatives – Paul Bristow / Stewart Jackson
Liberal Democrats – Beki Sellick
Green Party – Joseph Wells
UKIP – John Whitby
SDP – Patrick O’Flynn
Renew – Peter Ward
Independent – Fiona Onasanya / George Galloway / Femi Oluwole
Each of the main parties as well as some minor parties are included. There is a choice of three Independent candidates, Fiona Onasanya (the disgraced former MP), George Galloway (who intended to stand as an Independent left-wing pro-Brexit candidate) and Femi Oluwole (a remain campaigner who sought the endorsement of numerous remain parties to field a single pro-EU candidate).
So while national politics tears itself apart and nobody knows what the local elections *really* tell us, here’s a less interesting local election in a city close to my heart, the home of Delia, the Canaries and Alan Partridge. Will Labour be able to keep control of Norwich City Council? Probably. Will the Greens, Lib Dems or Conservatives make any gains? That’s up to you! Enjoy
It’s what it says on the tin, this adds new leaders for both the major parties as well as some minor parties. In the near future I will add bios for the present leaders. I plan on adding more leaders, and diversifying the independent party (add minor parties and ideologically specific independents) sometime in the future.
A new scenario from our neck of the woods! London has critical local elections coming up in just a couple of weeks time (2nd May: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/London_local_elections,_2018 )
Can Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party inflict severe losses upon the Conservatives, led by Theresa May? The contest is heating up for several conservative controlled councils, with the Tories heading for their worst ever result in the capital city. Can Labour take the critical Tory councils of Barnett, Wandsworth, Westminster, Kensington and Chelsea and Hillingdon and show that it is on the way to a general election victory? Or will Theresa May and the Tories hang onto most of their councils and take the steam out of the Labour steamroller? Will the Liberal Democrats be able to capitalise on the anti Brexit tide, or will it be the Greens or UKIP who become the 3rd party in London instead?
Last local elections: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/London_local_elections,_2014
A good night for Labour: Taking Barnett, Tower Hamlets, and at least three other of the councils. Inflicting losses of above 200 Councillors on the Tories would inflict severe damage on the Conservative Party.
A good night for the Conservatives: Holding onto all or most of their councils and (At worst) losing Barnett, but taking back Havering from the independents. Fighting off the Liberal Democrats in Richmond and Kingston. Losses of less than 100, or potential gains, would be a very good result.
A good night for the Liberal Democrats: Holding onto Sutton, winning Richmond and Kingston Upon Thames would show that the anti Brexit vote is in full swing
A good night for the Greens/UKIP: Winning anything at all.
After two landslide victories over the Tories in 1997 and 2001, Tony Blair’s Labour looks to be in a more precarious position going into the 2005 General Election. Britain’s controversial intervention in Iraq with the USA has seen the Prime Minister’s popularity plummet, and the government’s polling lead narrow significantly as the troubled Tory opposition restores some semblance of unity under former Home Secretary Michael Howard, and the Lib Dems take advantage of their anti war stance to increase their support.
Can Labour overcome their difficulties to win a record breaking third term in the style of their past two triumphs? Or will the Tories be able to bridge the gap and form their first government in eight years? And can charismatic Scot Charles Kennedy lead his Lib Dems to he breakthrough to major party status that they have been aspiring to for so long?