TUSC polls 9.7% in Caerphilly council by-election
TRADE UNIONIST and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) candidate Jaime Davies polled a very creditable 9.7% share of the vote in last Thursday's by-election for the Penyrheol division of Caerphilly council.
Plaid Cymru won the by-election with 929 votes, increasing its share of the vote compared to when the seat was last contested in May 2012, but saw its actual vote fall by 432, as turnout slumped to 20%.
Labour was second with 554 votes - 520 votes down on May 2012 and with a 5% reduced share - while the Tories came in last, behind TUSC, with 135 votes.
TUSC had stood in Penyrheol before, in the full council elections in 2012, and its vote this time was almost identical (173 compared to 174 in 2012) but, with the reduced turnout, the TUSC share rose from 5.8% then to just under ten per cent now.
For every three Labour votes in Penyrheol there was one voter prepared to back TUSC's clear anti-cuts, socialist message.
Interestingly Penyrheol was the third council by-election since May's local elections that TUSC has contested in seats that it had stood in previously - and in every one TUSC's absolute vote has held up or increased and its share of the poll has risen.
It is fortuitous when a by-election takes place in an area where a TUSC candidate has stood previously - but the chances of that happening, of course, increase the more widely trade unionists, socialists and anti-austerity campaigners come forward to stand in elections.
August 1 - Caerphilly council, Penyrheol division:
Plaid Cymru 929; Labour 554; TUSC 173 (9.7%); Conservatives 135
Why don't you stand?
If there is a by-election in your area and you're prepared to stand as a TUSC candidate, get in touch.
One thing you will need to do is to get a Certificate of Authorisation from the TUSC National Nominating Officer to hand in with the nomination papers to the local council returning officer and an application form is available on the TUSC website at http://www.tusc.org.uk/candidates.php Remember - if there is no trade unionist or socialist candidate standing as an alternative to the austerity parties, a cuts candidate will win unchallenged.