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Thursday, May 29, 2008

Last Post

E J Thribb MP has been doing some research into exactly how bad the 1st May local elections when compared with previous Tory breakthrough years in 1968 and 1978 when Labour had been relatively strong in local government. And whether there are lessons to be learnt about minimising our losses in the future. He thinks definitely so and has asked me to post this:

"So, farewell then
Labour Party
Local election results in the future
Are not all doom and gloom
Because there will be
No-one left to be doom-laden and gloomy.
The mathematics is on our side
As we slowly fade away.
Therein lies the enigma.

Although the media commentary was not a million miles from the mark in depicting the 2008 local elections as a wipe-out for Labour, they were nowhere nearly as bad as our defeats in 1968 or 1978, which presaged Tory General Election victories. The reason for this was, of course, that we have now reached such a low point that there wasn't a huge amount to lose. In 2008 we started with only 2,699 of the 8,419 council seat total, with the Tories 199 seats ahead before the elections and 790 ahead after the final results were declared.

So our strategy for the future is obvious. With only 2,365 seats to lose now, we should do better and better in future when compared with the disasters of the '60s and '70s. Projecting ahead another 50 years, it looks likely that even in a particularly bad year we will lose almost no seats in the local elections. So these people on a council estate in Gosport commiserating this year's decimation of Labour by the LibDems will have absolutely nothing to worry about:

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