Monday, 7 May 2012

MK comment on local election results in Scotland and Wales

The Conservative and Liberal Democrat Coalition took a real drubbing in Thursday’s local elections. Together they rightly lost over 700 seats, as well as control of a number of Councils.

In Scotland, the SNP achieved another fantastic election. It out-polled the Labour Party and won a total of 424 seats, electing 61 more councillors than when the seats were last contested. The SNP also won control of Angus and Dundee Councils, and has already formed an administration in Midlothian, in partnership with an Independent and a Green Councillor.

But it was very disappointing how the London media downplayed the SNP successes, preferring to publicise how well the Labour did in Scotland – even though it elected fewer councillors, made fewer gains and won fewer votes overall.

In Glasgow, for example, Labour won 44 seats out of 79, while the SNP won 27 – an increase of seven. Labour was shown as having gained five seats, but in 2007, when the seats were last contested, they actually won 45 seats! (The difference was that a number of deselected councillors walked on Labour a few months back.)

Sadly, in Wales, Plaid Cymru did less well, electing 158 councillors – 39 less than in 2008.

Very good Plaid Cymru councillors have lost their seats, with voters streaming back to Labour to express their anger at the policies of the Coalition. I know many of the Plaid members and I would like to extend my commiserations at this time.

Plaid is however the largest group on three Councils. In Gwynedd, it elected 37 councillors, winning exactly half of the 74 seats contested. There is one seat still vacant. In Ceredigion, it won 19 seats (out of 42) and, in Carmarthenshire, it won 28 seats (out of 74).

They are still the second largest party in Welsh local government and will have a vital role to play in standing up for Wales.

But looking ahead to the 2013 local election, the unpopularity of the Coalition bodes well for MK.

I am confident that MK is poised to do extremely well. We now have ten months to prepare a strong team of candidates for Cornwall Council, as well as local town and parish councils. If you want to be part of this campaign, why not get in contact?

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