Political pundits, experts, analysts and politicians have been chewing over Thursday’s Sleaford by-election result but for what it is worth this is what this voter thinks.
Sleaford is safe Tory ground; why escapes me.
There is little doubt BRexit is the current election tool. It is being used to get your vote. Immigration fears are also high on the right-wing election agenda.
Tapping into people’s fears led to the election of Donald J Trump across the Pond.
Conservative Press Office trolled Labour MPS and more on Twitter Thursday pushing out their message that Labour MPs will not respect the referendum result claiming Labour are out of touch with ordinary people.
It was a shameful misuse of social media.
It used false allegations. But we are talking ajerebout unelected Theresa May’s Nasty Tory Party.
Little wonder then that voters in Sleaford voted thus;
“Sleaford & North Hykeham result:
Dr Caroline Johnson (Conservative) 17,570 (53.51%, -2.68%)
Victoria Ayling (UKIP) 4,426 (13.48%, -2.21%)
Ross Pepper (Liberal Democrat) 3,606 (10.98%, +5.33%)
Jim Clarke (Labour) 3,363 (10.24%, -7.02%)
Marianne Overton (Lincs Ind) 2,892 (8.81%, +3.59%)
Sarah Stock (Ind) 462 (1.41%)
The Iconic Arty-Pole (Loony) 200 (0.61%)
Paul Coyne (ND) 186 (0.57%)
Mark Suffield (ND) 74 (0.23%)
David Bishop (BP Elvis) 55 (0.17%)
Electorate 88,712; Turnout 32,834 (37.01%, -33.23%)
But although the Conservative candidate won their share of the vote was down; so was Labour’s and UKip’s. Look at the low turn out too.
Floating voters have short memories and so the real winner in some ways is the Liberal Democrat candidate. That flies in the face of BRexit as the Lib Dems are promising a second money spinning referendum. It also means the party’s Tory years cuddling up in a coalition government have been forgiven or forgotten. But then it is a safe Tory seat. That could explain a shift from Tory to Lib Dem though there is no doubt some Labour voter’s swapped sides.
The Tories winning candidate is an NHS doctor; again a mixed bag.
The Labour candidate was “Refuse driver and former postman Jim Clarke [who] was selected as Labour Party candidate at a meeting on Wednesday, November 9.” This is what he told the Lincolnshire reporter on November 10;
This is my home and it will be a great honour to represent Sleaford and North Hykeham.
“People here in Sleaford and North Hykeham need a local representative that is going to stand up for them and be their voice in Parliament.
It is not right that in 2016 working people here in Sleaford and North Hykeham are having to choose between heating and eating.
It is not right that Grantham Hospital hasn’t enough doctors to keep the hospital A&E open overnight. I will fight for the resources to protect our local NHS and I will stand side by side with local people campaigning to keep Grantham A&E open 24 hours a day.
We have a Tory government with no plan for Brexit. Here in Sleaford and North Hykeham 62% of people voted for Brexit.
But they didn’t vote to put their jobs at risk, they didn’t vote to lose their rights at work and they didn’t vote for price rises on everyday essentials.
Immigration played a big part in the Brexit result and I will not ignore that. We need to earn people’s trust and show that we respect will of the people, but will also hold the government to account on ensuring the best deal for Britain, which protects our local jobs.
An ordinary working man and a good candidate.
So why did he fail to win enough votes?
The Labour Party has spent more than a year in-fighting and grabbing headlines for all the wrong reasons.
Selfish elements within the party would rather wreck Jeremy Corbyn’s chances of ever forming a government than support the party leader and remove the Tories from power.
Public resignations by MPs, with resignation letters pinned to Twitter timelines look bad; a very public purge of members and other devious methods to remove Corbyn supporters is not a good look either; neither is convenient leaks to the mainstream media and shambolic politics; if Labour MPs do not support the party in its current form why the hell would voters?
The Tory party is probably in a worse place right now but you will not see any evidence of that unless you are part of the inner workings of that party.
They have always held their cards close to the chest and carried out dirty business behind closed doors.
What next for the Labour Party? You tell me.
Jim Clarke is an ordinary working guy who was never going to win Sleaford but he should have polled better. The fact he did not is not down to him.