Friday, October 06, 2006

Is John McDonnell MP havin a larf?

Ignoring a Labour parliamentary majority which previous leaders could only dream of, John McDonnell declares that "the most significant feature of the recent period has been the electorate's increasingly angry disillusionment with New Labour".

Hmm, never let inconvenient facts get in the way of a nice rant eh? I wonder if he can remember the majority that Attlee managed for his (very short) second term of office after his allegedly ‘successful and highly popular progressive first term’ (according to some leftie mythologists)?! (and I wonder if he’s read this post today on Luke’s blog which suggests that Labour perhaps isn’t quite finished yet?)

Mr McDonnell notes that "there was no policy content to Cameron's speech" – true but perhaps a case of a pot calling a kettle black?

6 Comments:

At 13:45, Anonymous Darren said...

I think it's you that needs to get your facts straight, mate. The current Labour majority exists because of a quirk of the electoral system. In actual fact, the Labour party received just over 35% of those votes cast at the last election - the smallest percentage of votes received by a winning party in the history of British democracy. Indeed, because of the low turnout, only just over a fifth of those eligible voted for Labour. At the recent local elections, as we all know, Labour was massacred.

This isn't all taking place because the Tories are more popular. It is because Labour has "misplaced" 4 million votes since 1997.

As for Attlee - in the 1951 election, Labour received the most votes (14 million) and won 48.8% of votes. The Tories had a 44.3% share - but won more seats, again because of a quirk in the electoral system. In other words, Labour may have lost that election - but they had a 13% higher share of the vote than in 2005, and a whopping 4.5 million more votes.

Never let inconvenient facts get in the way of a nice attempted character assassination, eh?

 
At 13:48, Blogger Bob Piper said...

Which is not disimilar to what I have said on my blog too, darren.

 
At 14:23, Anonymous Gregg said...

Labour lost 5 million voters between 1992 and 2001. It lost at least another million over Iraq. Party membership is at an all-time low. The big danger at the next election is not just that Labour might lose, but that if the voters Blair won on the right switch to the Tories while the ones he alienated on the left continue to stay at home, it'll come third. McDonell is, however, wrong to say there's an angry disillusionment - most former Labour voters have simply disengaged from the political process altogether.

 
At 16:05, Anonymous James said...

Oh dear, looks like this blogger's attempt to demolish John McDonnell has backfired pretty spectacularly. If I were them, I'd be so embarrassed that I'd probably never post again.

 
At 18:21, Blogger Hughes Views said...

Gosh 4 comments in one afternoon - a record for this blog. Thanks chaps.

However much we may hate or love the present electoral system, the key fact is that Labour has won three elections in a row. Would we rather stand with Michael Foot on the moral highground of 1983?

James - that's not likely to happen now is it?

 
At 05:02, Anonymous Gregg said...

However much we may hate or love the present electoral system, the key fact is that Labour has won three elections in a row. Would we rather stand with Michael Foot on the moral highground of 1983?

The key fact is that unless the leadership gets its act together and realises just how much damage Blair has done, how many voters he's chased away, the result at the next election will make 1983 look like a shining success.

 

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