Friday 17 December 2021
A Kick In The Salops
A most honourable mention at North Shropshire must go to Yolande Kenward, who took all of three votes. You need 10 signatures to get onto the ballot paper.
The total vote for Reform UK, UKIP, the Reclaim Party, the Heritage Party and the Freedom Alliance was 1370 lower than even the collapsed Labour vote, although the Others' total overall was higher than Labour's. Both of those facts are significant, as is the fact that UKIP, which most people assume no longer exists, outpolled Laurence Fox's well-publicised Reclaim.
On Tuesday, the Labour and Conservative Parties finally ended their 90-year courtship and made honest non-binaries of each other. Fully two days into that uncivil partnership, and the voters roundly rejected the merged party, with more votes for the Liberal Democrat than for the Conservative and Labour candidates put together.
Two years earlier, almost to the day, that same Lib Dem candidate had come third. The claim can no longer be made that anything on which the Labour and Conservative frontbenches were agreed was "the centre ground" and thus unquestionable. Again I say that Boris Johnson and Keir Starmer ought both to resign, although of course neither of them is going to do so.
Johnson might have done better if he had put up another member of the local gentry. An Army medic who had gone on to be called to the Bar was undeniably impressive, but he did not know that Shrewsbury was not in the constituency. Yet while Johnson can find local candidates if he has to, in most places Starmer does not even want to. Even, and indeed especially, where they are available, then he is determined to keep them out of Parliament, if necessary by kicking them out of the Labour Party.