Tag Archives: Election 2017

May’s election gamble seems to be backfiring

Source: The American Conservative
by Daniel Larison

“When May called a snap election last month, it seemed almost impossible that her party would lose seats. The prime minister assumed, and most observers agreed, that she was positioned to increase the Tory majority in the House of Commons by dozens of seats. There was talk of a landslide on par with the largest Thatcher and Blair victories. It was taken for granted that Labour was on track for the worst drubbing in modern history. While I thought there was a real danger that calling an election would backfire on May, especially when she had repeatedly said there would be no early election, I still didn’t guess that it would blow up in her face as spectacularly as it seems to have done. If there are no large Tory gains next month, the decision to call the election will go down as another unforced error by a Conservative leader. ” (05/26/17)


The early vote worm

Source: Common Sense
by Jacob Sense

“Last week was consequential for Greg Gianforte. Awfully. The Republican businessman won the special election for Montana’s lone seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. He also body-slammed a reporter. He now faces misdemeanor assault charges. For which Gianforte apologized publicly … as he was declaring victory. … The message from the Montana special election is that early voting periods are far too long. Montana’s early voting began nearly four weeks before Election Day. The assault by Gianforte, with criminal charges, hardly mattered, because roughly two-thirds of Montanans had already voted when it occurred.” (05/29/17)


The general election: Authoritarian hag v Fenian scumbag

Source: Libertarian Alliance
by Sean Gabb

“For the avoidance of doubt, I still intend to vote Conservative in this dreadful election. And, if Labour seems to be catching up in the opinion polls, so, I suspect, will enough people to give the Conservatives a decent majority. The general election is a rerun of last year’s Referendum. There is no other consideration that ought to sway anyone who is looking beyond our present circumstances. We vote Conservative. We leave the European Union. We hope and work for a realignment in British politics. Except for this, however, I would be dithering between another vote for UKIP and a spoiled ballot. Except for Europe, the contest is between an authoritarian hag and a Fenian scumbag.” [editor’s note: Odd that a libertarian who seems to be against immigration would rather vote for an authoritarian than give up on centuries of British immigration into, and occupation of, another country – TLK] (05/26/17)


MT: Gianforte leads special House election in early results

Source: Politico

“The polls are closed in Montana’s special House election, where voters cast ballots Thursday less than 24 hours after Republican candidate Greg Gianforte was charged with assault for allegedly attacking a reporter covering his campaign. The race between Gianforte and Democrat Rob Quist captured national attention this week after Gianforte’s on-tape blow-up with The Guardian’s Ben Jacobs, which was described by him and three other journalists who witnessed the episode as a ‘bodyslam.’ Gianforte’s lead over Quist was at 50 percent to 45 percent with about 225,000 ballots counted and complete returns trickling in slowly across the state.” (05/25/17)


MT: GOP candidate charged after allegedly “body slamming” reporter

Source: CNN

“Greg Gianforte, the Republican candidate in Montana’s special congressional election, has been charged with misdemeanor assault after he allegedly body slammed a reporter and broke his glasses on Wednesday night. The altercation took place at Gianforte’s campaign headquarters in Bozeman, Montana, the night before the state’s special election. It sent political shock waves rippling through the race, with two local newspapers rescinding their support for the GOP candidate. Ben Jacobs, a political reporter for the Guardian, said he had been asking Gianforte about the Republican healthcare plan when the candidate ‘body slammed’ him and began shouting, ‘Get the hell out of here.’ … The audio file provided by Jacobs backs up his account of the incident and so did accounts by other journalists who witnessed the incident.” (05/25/17)


UK: May ditches manifesto plan with “dementia tax” U-turn

Source: The Guardian [UK]

“Theresa May has said that a Conservative government would set an ‘absolute limit’ on the amount that people pay for social care, in a U-turn on plans included in her party’s election manifesto last week. The prime minister claimed that the inclusion of a cap, which comes after even supportive newspapers dubbed the plans a ‘dementia tax’ triggering days of backlash, was simply a clarification. … The announcement triggered claims of ‘chaos, confusion and indecision’ from Labour while the Lib Dems said it represented a ‘manifesto meltdown.’ … The Tory manifesto included plans to include a person’s property in the means test used to assess payments for social care within the home. It set a floor of £100,000 and promised that a family home would never need to be sold in a person’s lifetime. However, the policy caused anger because it meant that offspring would be forced to cover the cost, with many needing to sell their parents’ home to do so.” (05/22/17)


Iran: Reformists sweep Tehran municipal council election

Source: ABC News

“Candidates backing reform of Iran’s clerically overseen government swept municipal elections in Tehran, taking all 21 local council seats in the country’s capital while moderate President Hassan Rouhani won a second term in office, authorities said on Monday. Their win in Friday’s election marks the first time reformists have gained total control of Tehran’s municipal council since such votes began in the Islamic Republic in 1999. Iranian media also reported similar big gains for reformists in other major cities. While their powers are limited to local affairs, the councils represent direct control of governance by Iran’s 80 million people. Having reformists take control signals a groundswell of support for slowly changing the way government works in Iran, and reflects growing discontent with the country’s hard-liners.” (05/22/17)


Switzerland: Voters endorse withdrawal from nuclear power

Source: ABC News

“Swiss voters are supporting a referendum to withdraw the country from nuclear power in favor of renewable energy. A projection from Sunday’s referendum shows a majority of cantons (states) voted for the plan. Under Switzerland’s direct democracy system, initiatives need a majority of both cantons and votes to pass. The projection for SRF public television showed 58 percent of voters in favor and 42 percent against the proposal. The Swiss government wants to ban the construction of new nuclear power plants and decommission the country’s five existing ones at the end of their technically safe operating lives.” (05/21/17)


In limited praise of Charlie Elphicke

Source: Libertarian Alliance
by Sean Gabb

“Last Sunday, my daughter assisting, I delivered about three hundred leaflets in North Deal for Charlie Elphicke, my Conservative candidate in the General Election. This was the first time in thirty years I had lifted a finger for the Conservative Party. I explained the electoral system to my daughter. I canvassed a dog who tried to eat one of the leaflets. I got into a kerbside debate that may have brought over a few Labour households. It brought back memories of my youth. When I mentioned this on Facebook, one of my friends responded that Mr Elphicke had not been a Conservative Member of Parliament of the kind I would once have let myself support. I will not quote this response. It seems to be both accurate and damning.” (05/20/17)


Labour: The party of the non-working class

Source: spiked
by Tim Black

“While May is donning the proverbial donkey jacket and talking about workers’ rights, what is Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn doing to ‘woo working-class voters,’ as the Guardian inaccurately described his latest policy announcement? He’s promising to save the NHS, of course, with a promised £37 billion cash injection over the course of the next parliament. The recourse to a ‘save our NHS’ gesture is predictable, but it’s revealing, too. It captures a party that knows not how to speak for its one-time social base, only to speak to it, as an agglomeration of the poor and needy, people in want of treatment. Because that’s what the working class is for Labour now: patients in waiting, objects of public-health prohibitions, and sermons about fizzy drinks and fags. That’s why the NHS has become the sacred cow to whose udders Corbyn et al are determinedly attached. Because in Labour’s eyes, it’s what people need: beds and no circuses.” (05/16/17)