Ready for a double by-election day?

by Stephen Tall on June 26, 2007

Rumours abound (hat-tips: Dizzy and Guido) that Tony Blair will announce his resignation as an MP this week, triggering a by-election in Sedgefield to be held on the same day as the by-election in Ealing Southall.

Labour’s thinking goes that such a double-hander will dilute the Lib Dems’ by-election efforts – and as Labour are unlikely to lose both seats they could at the very least claim a “score draw”. (This was the phrase used by then Labour party chair, John Reid, after the Lib Dems’ sensationally snatched victory in Leicester South, but just missed out in Birmingham Hodge Hill. Both, of course, had been traditionally rock-solid Labour seats.)

So put a circle round Thursday, 26th July.

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Only double? What about Hull and Streatham? Neither make sense to risk by themselves. But four at once does.

by Pessimist on June 26, 2007 at 9:52 am. Reply #

“What about Hull and Streatham?”

Streatham MP has announced he’ll retire at next GE, but I’ve not heard suggestions he can resign early (infact announcing his intentions to retire, he mentioned carrying over his duties for “the next couple of years”).
I don’t think he has planned to die either.

by Andrea on June 26, 2007 at 10:21 am. Reply #

I can’t see too many Lib Dems from the N/East trailing down to Ealing, therefore we will not be as stretched as they might think!

by James on June 26, 2007 at 11:29 am. Reply #

Pessimist, I can’t see John Prescott resigning. What would he become? Special envoy for the National Syntax Association?

by Paul Walter on June 26, 2007 at 12:08 pm. Reply #

This article- speculates that John Prescott wants to stand down.

by Neil Woollcott on June 26, 2007 at 1:33 pm. Reply #

Please, please please can we all be banned from Sedgefield and forced into London. As someone who spent time in Blaenau Gwent last year when I could have dedicated just as much time to Bromley, I was incredibly frustrated when I saw the final results. I am sure I wasn’t alone. We have to be careful and not dilute ourselves out of a great opportunity.

by welshproudliberal on June 26, 2007 at 5:13 pm. Reply #

we showed at Hodge Hill and Leicester South that we could run multiple credible campaigns concurrently. No, we don’t want to be too diluted, but no sense in missing opportunities either.

by John Smith on June 26, 2007 at 5:16 pm. Reply #

Yeah, but without doubt in my mind, without Blaenau Gwent, we would have won Bromley. I know the people who would have come who were there instead and if they’d decamped to Bromley, it would have been enough.

by welshproudliberal on June 26, 2007 at 5:19 pm. Reply #

BBC now reporting that the Labour party have been warned to expect Blair to resign:

by Rob Fenwick on June 26, 2007 at 5:40 pm. Reply #

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