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13 May 2013

Leicester council by-election campaign builds support for TUSC

TRADE UNIONIST and Socialist Coalition candidate Tessa Warrington won a very creditable 165 votes (6.6%) in the Abbey ward council by-election in Leicester on May 9.

Leicester is a city with 52 Labour councillors out of 54 but the council and the Labour directly-elected Mayor have merely passed on the government's cuts.

TUSC campaigned against the proposed closure and privatisation of all the council care homes, the closure of 200 hostel beds for the homeless, Leicester Labour s full implementation of the 20% cut in Council Tax benefit, and their implementation of the bedroom tax.

Labour's new councillor, a leading member of the right-wing Labour grouping  Progress , turned up on local bedroom tax protests, but failed to promise to oppose evictions that result from it.

We were also up against an independent who campaigned against proposed traveller sites, and who gained some of the protest vote against the main parties. But our result was a good base from which to build support for TUSC in Leicester.

Abbey ward Leicester city council by-election:

Labour 1,190; Conservative 562; Independent 352; Lib Dems 212; TUSC 165 (6.6%)