Labour Struggles – T0Ries Collapse!

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ALL talk of a Brown ‘electoral bounce’ is sheer drivel or plain self deception after Labour got the votes of just 45 per cent of the 41.57 per cent of the registered voters who turned out at the Sedgefield by-election. Sedgefield was the seat of ex-Prime Minister Blair.

Not much of a bounce when a Labour MP is elected by just over 20 per cent of the registered voters.

So enamoured was the electorate with Labour, after 10 years of Blair, that the Labour majority fell at Sedgefield from 18,449 at the 2005 general election to just over 6,956 last Thursday.

In Sedgefield, Labour got 12,528 votes, the Lib Dems 5,572 and the Tories 4,082, with an 11 per cent swing from Labour to the Lib Dems.

In fact turn-out at 41.57 per cent was down 20.65 percentage points from 2005.

At Ealing Southall, the Labour majority collapsed from 11,440 to 5,070 with a 42.95 per cent turn out of the electors.

In Ealing Southall, Labour got just 15,188 votes, with the Lib Dems getting 10,118 and the Tories 8,230, a swing of 5.24 per cent from Labour to the Lib Dems.

Turnout at 42.95 per cent was down 13.23 points on 2005 making for another Labour MP being elected by just over 20 per cent of the electorate.

For Labour the results were a disaster, for the Liberal Democrats there was a little relief for the party’s ageing leader, while for the Tories there was a catastrophe, with Cameron paying the price for putting himself forward as the real successor to Blair, and being dumped by the electorate as his just reward.

In what were two of the safest Labour seats, Brown just managed to hold on, with workers not able to muster up enough enthusiasm to leave the house and vote.

The problem for Brown is that while he has managed to disassociate himself from Blair in matters of little substance such as spin, in terms of policy there is no difference between himself and Blair, in fact, it is just more of the same.

He adores the private equity capitalists, and champions those who have taken advantage of his legislation and pay no taxes.

He also intends to privatise the NHS and shut the major District General Hospitals. Not content with that he is to sack 100,000 civil servants and is determined to cut the pay of all public sector workers with under inflation wage rises. Last but not least he is 100 per cent behind the Royal Mail’s drive to casualise and privatise the Royal Mail and break the power of the CWU.

In other words he is an out and out bosses man.

This is why workers will not support him, despite all of the junk being spewed out by union leaders about the new era that is said to be beginning. Workers are more and more determined to defend their jobs, wages and basic rights from all-comers including Brown and the bosses.

Also there is little enthusiasm for a return of the Tories amongst the middle class, who feel that they are about to be ruined by a capitalist crash of the housing market.

In fact, after the experiences of decades of sleazy Tory and Labour governments, there is no enthusiasm for, or confidence in, parliament and the House of Commons, as an instrument for making changes. The House of Commons has become discredited. The majority of voters now stay at home!

The time has now come for the working class through its trade union power, to defend the interests of the working class and the middle class.

To start the working class offensive, a public sector alliance must be formed to take mass strike action to support the CWU postal workers and to defeat the privatisation and pay cutting plans of the Brown government.

In fact the Brown government must be brought down to clear the way for a workers government that will expropriate the bosses and bankers and bring in socialism. This is the way forward.