Friday, May 03, 2013

My take on yesterday's elections

Now that was a really interesting election day. Not your usual nudge one way or another, or the media trying desperately to build something entirely predictable into a news story. It was a genuine story. And top line by some distance was the dramatic surge in support for Ukip. The South Shields result had been seen before. But to win around 25% of the vote in local elections across England was some result. This blog is never knowingly churlish so first up must be congratulations to Nigel Farage on the success of his party. Certainly there's probably an element of 'plague on all your houses' in this 25%, but that was some plague. And it may be that this will (to some extent at least) become a continuing feature of British politics. I hear the sound of rethinking across the British political firmament.  Luckily, I've always adopted a policy of being friendly and generous to Ukip. In Montgomeryshire, Ukip stalwart, the late David Rowlands was a very good friend.

It was not a good night for the three mainstream parties - though the Conservatives certainly did no worse than expected. The seats being contested yesterday were last fought in 2009, when Gordon Brown and Labour were deeply unpopular. And its also usual that governing parties taking through unpopular policies (no matter how necessary) take a mid-term hit in popularity.  But we still lost well over 300 council seats and came a poor third in the South Shields By-Election. No good pretending it was a great result.

Nor was it a good night for Labour. Despite its desperate performance in the 2009 election it made only modest gains - certainly less than commentators expected. Historical precedent tells us that yesterday's performance was not remotely good enough to anticipate victory in 2015. I suspect there will be more head scratching in Labour HQ tonight than in Tory HQ.

So too the Lib Dems. It lost over 12% of its vote compared to 2009, which was not good at all. And its performance in the South Shields By-Election was stunningly awful. Lib Dems are like ink stains where they are settled into constituencies. They take some shifting. But it was a very inconsistent result. On balance, I think this was the poorest performance of the day.

There is going to have to be some serious thinking about why there was such support for Ukip - and how to win our voters back. I was interested to hear Nigel Farage cite onshore wind farms as his first comment on Radio 4 after the 5.00 News. That would count big-time in mid Wales. I am a countryman, and no-one would ever describe me as part of any metropolitan elite - and I can see that Nigel Farage is aiming his appeal in my direction. As a general comment, I think my party should try to be attractive to me and my kind - a natural Conservative constituency.  


Cai Larsen said...

Oeddych chi'n gwybod bod etholiadau yng Nghymru hefyd?

Glyn Davies said...

Rown i'n gwybod bod etholiadau yn Ynys Mon ond rown ni'n ystyried syfyllfa yn cyfredinol ac hefyd edrych ymlaen i'r etholiad cyfredinol yn 2015. Roedd yr etholiad yn Ynys Mon yn dweud ddim on cafodd Plaid Cymru canlyniad da o day trefniad etholaidol newydd.

Ioan said...

Ym Mon cafodd UKIP tua 7% yn y wardiau lle roeddynt yn sefyll. Yn Lloger roedd yn 33%. Gan bod yna nifer sylweddol o Saeson yn byw ym Mon, mae'n edrych yn debyg bod Saeson sy'n byw yng Ngymru yn llai tebygol o bledleisio UKIP na Saeson sy'n byw yn Lloeger - newydd da i chi ym Maldwyn..!

Glyn Davies said...

Ioan - Enillodd fy hen ffrind, Peter Rogers ?

Tory voter said...

My take on the Anglesey vote where there was a 51% turnout, you've seen pro wind plaid gain votes and the anti wind tories lose votes dramatically. UKIP doubled their % of votes but only account for 7% of the total votes cast. Not enough to win at an general election!

The same applies in Shropshire. While I have not seen a breakdown of the votes, I've taken a snapshot of votes cast where Cons / LD / UKIP all stood in the same wards.
The Conservatives would still win a general election there, with LD snapping at their heals and UKIP miles behind making them a minority party.

Apply this to Montgomeryshire where it is still very much a strong LD constituency. Bearing in mind, many people voted for you as a protest vote to oust fame hungry Lembit last time. The doubling of the percentage of UKIP votes in Montgomeryshire at the next general election would eat into your very small majority over the Lib Dems.

If all the anti's vote for UKIP next time as I've heard some want to do... (there are on average 2000 people signing the anti wind petitions, half of which live in Montgomeryshire) then UKIP can easily double their vote here.
You should fear UKIP, but not as a threat to mainstream politics, but they will be the party to cast you out of your seat.

We conservative supporters need to big you up and start shouting about your achievements. Let us know when you start delivering for Montgomeryshire, because I'm hearing too many grumbles about you asking "what on earth has he done since he got elected"

Anonymous said...

Plaid Cymru are NOT the Party for Wales - I have taken a further look at the party and discovered they remain oblique to the role of intellectual property (IP) in thriving economies - particularly ones in the Far East. Plaid still have the old left of left mindset that belongs to some bygone age. Plaid don't understand what it will take to 'Win the Future' in terms of job and wealth creation in Wales. Leanne Wood has said she wants to be judged on her economic policies - except she doesn't have one vis-à-vis Welsh intellectual property. Nothing of substance has changed since at least 2003 when I flew 4,000 miles to see the then Plaid AM who held Plaid's economic brief. "Plaid does not find IP sexy enough" cw

John Jones. Tory supporter (past tense) said...

"what on earth has he done since he got elected"

Without being unkind in any way may I suggest Glyn your legacy will be one of opposing Wind Farms and Nat Grid and the inward investment that that offers for Montgomeryshire concerning the young generation.

Anonymous said...

Anglesey was a special case given the amount of very frustrating infighting that had gone on there.

Anonymous said...

Since Plaid has come up along with discussion on improving the Welsh economy... this is funny - if it wasn't deadly serious:

Plaid Cymru views Intellectual Property as firewalls and for support likes to quote Abraham Lincoln ('Ideas for the First Welsh Parliament', Issue 1).

But Abraham Lincoln got a patent!


Anonymous said...


Since Plaid seems keen on quoting Abraham Lincoln perhaps Plaid should have researched the great man better!

“In 1858, Abraham Lincoln called the introduction of patent laws one of the three most important developments "in the world’s history," along with the discovery of America and the perfection of printing." ( Inventors)


Anonymous said...

not meaning to indulge on ‘our Glyn’ too much, but this is funny, Plaid relying on Abraham Lincoln to support their anti-patent policy (Plaid's publication: 'Ideas for the First Welsh Parliament', Issue 1); below is a link to a photo - the gold coloured emblem at the back of the Class of Inductees at The National Inventors Hall of Frame depicts two famous people one of which is the great patent proponent Abraham Lincoln (a Republican, but I guess Plaid forgot to research that too).