Richard Willis's Blog

First for local news and first for comment

Labour Rocked as MP Resigns the Whip and Candidate is Sacked

Just a few days ago Gordon Brown went to the Palace and the worst kept secret, namely the date of the General Election, was out. The polls had narrowed and clearly Labour was hopeful that they would narrow further as the Labour emphasis on experience and “better the devil you know” hit home. However, ever since George Osborne announced the policy of cutting back Labour’s planned increase in National Insurance Labour have been on the back foot. The issue has run and run as more and more top business people have come out in support of the Conservative plans. More were announced today!

So with such a poor start to Labour’s re-election campaign surely “things can only get better”! However, today things have gone from bad to worse. The day started with a Scottish Labour candidate under attack across the blogosphere and wider media for his obscene and offensive references to people on Twitter. This afternoon he was sacked by the party and issued an apology.

Tonight veteran Labour MP Frank Cook (Stockton North) has resigned the Labour Whip and announced that he will contest the seat as an Independent. A normally safe Labour seat is now thrown wide open and his attack on the Labour Party under Gordon Brown’s leadership will resonate with some others. Yes he is 74 years old and had been deselected 2 years ago but it is interesting that he has decided now to launch his attack on the Labour Party he has served for so many years.

The recent opinion polls have been suggesting a potentially devastating pincer movement on Labour as the Conservatives advance closer to a consistent 40% rating and the Lib Dems closing the gap on Labour who seem to be stuck at or just below 30%. This scenario could lead to much greater Labour seat losses than a Uniform National Swing would imply.

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April 9, 2010 - Posted by | National

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