2012 Local Elections
Victories in Preston and Walsall; a setback in Coventry; solid votes in many councils
TWO TUSC-backed candidates have won council seats in Thursday’s elections! Michael Lavalette, who narrowly lost his Town Centre ward seat on Preston council last year, claimed it back this time, beating the Labour candidate by nearly a hundred votes with 48.5% of the poll.
In Walsall, Peter Smith, who had also lost his seat in 2011, shot up from 34% of the vote in 2011 to 45.8% this year to win back the Blakenall ward. Peter is a member of the Walsall Democratic Labour Party, which co-operates with other socialist organisations under the TUSC coalition umbrella.
Unfortunately, the elections in Coventry saw a setback for TUSC. The TUSC national chairperson, Dave Nellist, lost his seat on Coventry council. Despite increasing the socialist vote in the St Michaels ward from last year to 1,469 this time (43.4%), Dave was defeated by a city-wide Labour Party campaign to unseat the only anti-austerity opposition from the council.
Other early results saw TUSC candidate George Tapp poll 18.7% in Salford’s Ordsall ward, Brendan Tyrrell score 18.3% in Halewood South ward in Knowsley, and Elaine Brunskill 13.3% in Gateshead’s High Fell ward.
We will post an initial national overview report of the TUSC results on Saturday – we want to produce an accurate overall picture of the TUSC campaign as rapidly as possible. But there is a lot of information to process. TUSC contested over 130 seats in the local council elections in England and Wales. How does our vote this year compare with 2011? Last year, for every one person who voted for TUSC there were ten people who voted Labour. What will be the ratio this year? TUSC outpolled the Liberal Democrats – ‘a party of government’ – in one in eight clashes last year. What will be the score this time? Watch this space…