Peter Tatchell will help secure another famous Lib Dem win

Good news, Peter Tatchell, the publicity seeking wannabe politician, is to stand in Oxford East at the next General Election. This is of course great news for the Lib Dems.

Peter Tatchell was the candidate in the famous Bermondsey by-election. He even wrote a book on the subject "The Battle of Bermondsey", in which he denigrated the Lib Dems obsession with pavement politics. he also had a massive effect on Labour voters with former socialists unable to put a cross next to his name.

What his standing will do is to focus people in on the constituency and ti will show how he stands absolutely no chance at all and it will put in sharp contrast his position and that of the Lib Dems who are set to win next time. For all the Green's local government success in Oxford, they have never translated this in to General Election votes, indeed, after the Greens had a taste of power in Oxford, it seems they have peaked and have seen their vote slip back in recent years.

So with only a couple of % between the Lib Dems and Labour, and the Greens in fourth, Tatchell yet again will be able to go to an election count safe in the knowledge that the Lib Dems have won.

P.S. Some of the anonymous posters making unsubstantiated comments are welcome to post under their real names, but if you are going to say things that cannot be justified, then go post to another blog, or alternatively, set up one of your own !


Tom Papworth said...

I wonder if the difficulty that "former socialists" faced was in any way exacerbated by the homophobic campaign we ran?

The Bermondsey by-election was not our finest hour!

Jonny Wright said...

I don't know what the other Oxonian bloggers reckon, but I think the best way to campaign against the Greens would be to print out a load of bright green posters saying "Vote Green - stop the Oxford animal lab!" ... ;-)

Norfolk Blogger said...

This is often over exaggerated. Tatchell makes barely no mention of it in his own account of the campaign whilst people I know who attended the by-election (one Labour, one Tory) always say the independent Labour people were the worst by a long, long way.

Jonny Wright said...

I agree with Tom that Bermondsey '83 wasn't our finest hour by a long way. Whether or not Liberals were actively homophobic, they didn't go far out of their way to stop it. We did also produce the "straight choice" leaflet. There was also an anonymous (ie illegal) flyer entitled "Which Queen will you vote for?" - Tatchell claims that it was printed by the Liberals, and that an insider came clean and apologised to him years later.

Having said that, Tatchell has entirely forgiven Simon Hughes, and backed him in the leadership election. Also, there's a lot of evidence, as Nich says, that the Independent Labour candidates were at it like hell too. Have you seen the documentary "Pride and Prejudice in Politics", about gay MPs? There's a section on the Bermondsey by-election, including a video of one of the ind. Lab. candidates singing a homophobic song over a loudhailer.

Anonymous said...

That we were by no means the worst does not make the manner of the campaign acceptable, especially for a liberal party. Slogans like "STRAIGHT CHOICE" clearly only had one intent.

Anonymous said...

What an incredibly complacent article or alternatively just wishful thinking.
So this seat is in the bag for the Lib Dems,so no need for any of the other candidates to turn up?

Or could it be the fear that the electorate of Oxford East will have a real 'Green' candidate to vote for and that could lose the Lib Dems truck loads of votes.

On the other hand left of centre voters will be reminded of the overt and blatant homophobic campaign that the Lib Dems ran against Tatchell in Bermondsey.

I think you can honestly kiss this seat goodbye.

Chris Paul said...

It was a shocking campaign NB and there is no excuse for it. Imagine the horror if Labour did it to one of your candidates.

The idea that Tatchell will drive the Lib Dem vote or nick votes from Labour that stuck in 2005 is franly bonkers. I agree with Iain Dale. Phew.

Anonymous said...

>indeed, after the Greens had a taste of power in >Oxford, it seems they have peaked and have seen >their vote slip back in recent years.

Whatever the merit of your other comments (not much in my opinion, but your entitled to your view!) - this is factually incorrect.

It is true that the Green vote went down somewhat after their decision to go into coalition with you lot, but it recovered and they now have the most councillors they have ever had, along with the highest local government vote share they've ever had (about 22% in 2006 across the city).

Rob said...

Didn't you lose a safe seat last year because of your support for animal extremists who blow labs in Oxford ?

Anonymous said...

Rob makes an astonishing accusation, particularly as he is wrong on all counts.

1) The Greens didn't lose a safe seat. They failed to win a seat from the Lib Dems in Holywell - but kept their seat next door, in Carfax. So everything actually stayed the same.

2) It would be difficult to support 'animal extremists who blow up labs in Oxford' for the simple reason that, well, no animal extremists have blown up any labs in Oxford.

3) Even if they had, the Green Party certainly has never supported violent protest, for animal rights or anything else. Suggesting otherwise is just malicious.

If you disagree with the Green stance on animal research, thats fair enough. Conflating it with 'support for animal extremists who blow up labs in Oxford' is despicable. Please stop it.

Norfolk Blogger said...

So you don't support the campaign launched in Oxford to support the test labs then ?

As for Rob, I'll have to vet him more stringently !!!! Perhaps I should send him to the test labs ?

Jonny Wright said...

Previous anonymous:

You're wrong on two out of three counts.

1) The Greens held Carfax by 33 votes from the Lib Dems - but in an electoral travesty, Lincoln College missed the deadline for getting students on the electoral register, and up to 200 voters were disenfranchised, through no fault of their own. The whole thing strikes me as desperately unfair and not very representative, especially with such a tiny margin.

2) No, they didn't blow up the labs, did they? They blew up a student boathouse, causing half a million quid worth of damages, to a student rowing team that had sod all to do with animal experiments. They also sent out a charming press release declaring all students to be targets.

3) Entirely fair, but most students in Oxford are pro-lab (a student union referendum supporting the lab was carried by a landslide, on a high turnout). If you disagree with the Greens' stance, the right response is to vote against them - but 200-odd students in the ward were denied that chance, thanks to incompetence and a rather dodgy voter registration system.

Anonymous said...

Nich, I'm sorry to have to ay that I disagree with you. The Green vote will increase mainly at your expense. This will lead to Labour holding the seat. Tachell can expect to win 2-5,000 votes.

Actually, he's a decent man. I like him a lot. They '83 by-election was a disgrace!

Anonymous said...

Yes, Bermondsey was a disgraceful incident, but lets put it in context.

Simon Hughes has apologised and Peter Tatchell has now forgiven him. Indeed, Hughes' voting record on gay rights since is excellent. Furthermore, The Liberal-SDP alliance, and now the Liberal Democrats have consistently good voting record on gay rights.

The thing we must all take away from the Bermondsey by-election is never, ever to use so-called "dirty tricks" in political campaigns, rather than just simply acknowledging how disgraceful Bermondsey was.