Observations On David Cameron Apologise For Local Elections. To Do It Justices I Have Included the Article Below:
David Cameron has apologised to hundreds of Conservative councillors who lost their seats in the local elections “against a difficult national backdrop”.
Meanwhile Ed Miliband declared that Labour was “winning back people’s trust” after a night of big gains across the country saw his party take control of several key councils, including Birmingham, Southampton, Plymouth, Reading, Norwich, Thurrock and Harlow.
With around half the votes counted for some 5,000 seats in 181 councils across England, Scotland and Wales, Labour had won control of 22 councils, racked up around 470 new seats and looked set for overall gains of more than 700. The Tories looked likely to lose more than 350 seats and the Liberal Democrats about 200.
Psephologists said the results showed about 39% of the vote, in elections conducted on a low turnout of about 32%, going to Labour, while the Tories were taking 31%, triggering laments from some within the party that it was not being “Conservative enough”.
The Lib Dems were taking 16% and were braced to see their share of the councillor base fall below 3,000 for the first time since the party was formed in 1988, prompting the Labour peer Lord Prescott to declare an “Armacleggon”.
Speaking outside his home, Miliband said: “We are a party winning back people’s trust, regaining ground, but there is more work to do. I know that David Cameron promised change and has disappointed people. I am determined that we can deliver Britain the change it needs.
“People are hurting. People are suffering from this recession, people are suffering from a government that raises taxes for them and cuts taxes for millionaires. I think that’s what we saw last night.”
But the prime minister – who suffered the embarrassment of losing seats in his Witney constituency to Labour as it made inroads into the Conservative heartlands of southern England – insisted he would continue to make the “difficult decisions” needed to deal with Britain’s debt.
Cameron visited the Conservative campaign headquarters in London to thank party workers.
“I’m sorry for the hard-working Conservative councillors who’ve lost their seats, obviously against a difficult national backdrop,” he said. “These are difficult times, and there aren’t easy answers. What we have to do is to take difficult decisions to deal with the debt, the deficit and the broken economy that we inherited. We’ll go on making those decisions because we’ve got to do the right thing for our country.”
He said the government had to “do everything to demonstrate we are on the side of people that work hard and do the right thing for themselves and their families – that’s who we are fighting for, that’s who we must govern for”.
His views were echoed by Clegg, who outlined his determination that the Lib Dems would continue to play their role in “rescuing, repairing and reforming the British economy”.
Speaking outside his London home, he said: “I am really sad that so many colleagues and friends – Liberal Democrat councillors, who have worked so hard, so tirelessly for so many years for communities and families in their local areas – have lost their seats and I want to pay tribute to all the great work they have done.”
Of the Lib Dems’ role in the coalition, he added: “It’s not an easy job and it can’t be done overnight but our duty is to boost jobs and investment and to restore a sense of hope and optimism to our country.”
Cameron’s dream of having elected mayors in Britain’s major cities looks to be in tatters after the idea was rejected in referendums across the country. Manchester, Bradford, Nottingham and Coventry voted against having a mayor, while Birmingham, which was expected to vote yes, also seems set to vote no. Another six cities are voting, but most are expected to reject the proposal.
The Conservatives, who hope to see Boris Johnson declared victorious in the London mayoral race against Ken Livingstone when the votes are counted later on Friday, were making light of their losses.
William Hague, the foreign secretary, told BBC1’s Breakfast: “These results – while it is never a good feeling to lose councillors – are well within the normal range of mid-term results for governments, and I think not so good for the opposition, who are not getting 40% of the vote.
“There is no tidal wave running for anybody else,” he said. “These elections are a test for the opposition as well as the government, and they are not passing that test.”
In Wales, Labour gained control of Caerphilly council in the south of the country in a landslide victory. With votes in one ward to be recounted later on Friday, the party had 49 seats, with 20 for Plaid Cymru and two independents. Labour also captured Newport, with three seats still to be decided.
Labour’s Joe Anderson became Liverpool’s first directly elected mayor. But the party lost four seats to George Galloway’s Respect party in Bradford, including that of council leader Ian Greenwood. Respect, which recently shocked Labour after Galloway wrested its safe Bradford West parliamentary seat from it in a byelection, also took a seat from the Conservatives.
The UK Independence party was on course for its best local election results, mainly at the expense of the Conservatives. Ukip has been averaging 13% of the vote in the seats it contested – five points higher than a year ago – making 2012 a record year for Nigel Farage’s Eurosceptics.
The British National party was facing political meltdown, having lost nine of the 12 seats it was defending, with the remaining three still to declare. The party’s sole representative in Burnley – once the BNP’s stronghold – was defeated and in other areas the BNP’s vote was down by as much as 50%.
The Conservative party co-chair, Lady Warsi, triggered a furore after suggesting it was interesting that an increase in the number of Ukip candidates had coincided with a drop in those standing for the BNP.
In a worrying sign for Cameron, Conservative rightwingers warned that the party needed to adopt a tougher stance on crime, immigration and Europe.
Gerald Howarth, a defence minister, said Cameron must consider Tory unhappiness over gay marriage and law reform after the election results.
In Plymouth – where the Conservatives suffered badly – Gary Streeter, a centrist MP, warned the leadership: “We need to work out a strategy for traditional Conservative voters shuffling off and voting Ukip because they don’t think our leadership is Conservative enough. We need to show the decisiveness and surefootedness we have shown in the past … the Ukip vote is about a hard core of traditional Tory voters saying: ‘We don’t like the liberal decisions this government is starting to take.'”
Claiming the Liberal Democrat vote was disappearing across the country, Streeter said: “If the Liberal Democrat tail has been wagging the dog a little bit too much, it does not need to do that any longer. We can be tougher with them. We have got to be much more Conservative on crime, law and order – that is what our supporters are waiting, indeed gagging to see.”
But the Lib Dem president, Tim Farron, said the Tories would be “bonkers” to respond to their setback by swinging to the right.
He told the BBC Radio 4 Today programme: “It was almost amazing that the Tories managed to not win the 2010 general election but the thought that they would somehow build themselves up to a majority by lurching to the right to try and bring back people they think they’ve lost to Ukip – insofar as anyone in the Tory party should take political and strategic advice from me, can I just advise them that would be bonkers.”
The dispute between the coalition partners underlines how tough it is going to be for Cameron and Clegg to keep their parties together. The latter is planning to use the next five days for a succession of media appearances in which he will seek to restate the reasons the party is in coalition.
Clegg will hold a joint event with Cameron on Tuesday, described as “Rose Garden 2” – a successor to the press conference that launched the coalition in May 2010 – at which the pair will argue that the fight to rebalance the economy remains the glue that keeps the two parties together. The Cameron-Clegg event will come a day before the Queen’s speech, which sets out the legislative programme.
Government sources dismissed reports that a ministerial reshuffle would take place this weekend.
Lib Dem activists are concerned about whether the party can continue to absorb such an attrition rate without seeing the destruction of two decades of building a local council base. Clegg’s immediate task, officials say, is to persuade his membership that a second successive year of reverses in local elections does not foreshadow inevitable electoral wipeout in 2015.
He is hoping to be able to point to results showing that the party is faring better in councils where it has an incumbent MP.
The Year opf The Drangon has brought some fortunes to The Labour both National, Local, and Regional in 2012.
West Midlands Chinese For Labour would like to congratulate all newly elected Labour Councillors and councils which has come back to Labour from cities like Birmingham the second largest city in the UK.
West Midlands Chinese For Labour will continue to work closely with all the West Midlands Labour local parties and hope to bring more results like we had in Birmingham and we would like to congratulate Sir Albert Bore and other West Midlands Labour Councillor Leaders for a great victory. Remember The citizens have spoken with one voice so make it count.
Leaders of the mainstream parties are expecting a low turnout from yesterday’s local authority elections in England, Wales and Scotland.
The reasons are not hard to find, with many electors believing that a choice between candidates offering similar “efficiency” packages of jobs and service cuts doesn’t justify a trip to the polling station.
Holding down council tax levels and trimming the services on which many poor people depend is standard fare for Tory Party candidates, but it has been adopted by other parties under the false banner of responsibility.
No-one likes to pay more tax, but people will agree to if they see that doing so brings dividends in terms of a more cohesive and less stressful society.
Yet councils of every colour are lining up to cut expenditure, closing essential services such as libraries, care homes, schools and debt advice centres, effectively carrying out the bankers’ austerity agenda operated by the conservative coalition at Westminster.
Pay restraint and growing unemployment are combining to cut purchasing power and drive down living standards, which makes any “business as normal” approach by councils untenable.
Millions of trade unionists have already taken strike action on a number of days of action and many will continue to protest against government policies.
But local communities must also become centres of resistance, expressed in both electoral and mass mobilisation terms.
Local campaigns to defend public services have tried to extract promises from those standing in the elections and have, in some circumstances, worked alongside mainly Labour candidates to present an alternative approach.
One of the positive outcomes of returning a minority Labour government in last year’s Welsh assembly elections was that Carwyn Jones’s administration agreed a joint approach with the Wales TUC to prioritise employment protection.
Where trade unions fighting actively against Westminster government policies can find common anti-cuts cause with labour movement candidates, that is a positive outcome.
No candidate from any party should be allowed to get away with the lie that cuts are inevitable. Implementing them is a political choice.
Councils faced with financial problems over a gap between the funding available to them by the government and their necessary spending plans should work together with local trade unionists and community groups to campaign openly and effectively against the Westminster conservative coalition.
Giving a good electoral kicking to the Tories and their Liberal Democrat coalition junior partners is essential in today’s elections throughout Britain.
But it is even more vital in London, where the beleaguered Tory Party is banking on re-election of Boris Johnson as mayor to boost its own morale and deflate Labour.
Some of the more embittered Blairite remnants have been doing the Tories’ job for them by making negative comments about Labour candidate Ken Livingstone, which says more about them than him.
Livingstone’s programme, which is unashamedly targeted at London’s working class – taking in cheaper fares, rent controls, restoring the educational allowance maintenance, holding down heating costs through a co-operative, extending public transport and building half a million homes – should commend itself to Londoners.
In addition, if successful against Johnson, it would illustrate the sort of approach needed at national level to enthuse Labour’s former voters who were turned off by the new Labour nightmare.
Yesterday’s elections are an essential part of the fightback process to defeat the coalition and present an alternative to the bankers’ austerity agenda.