I suppose getting the worst result for a Labour MP, against a self financed Independent at the May General Election, might even get through to Denis!
As I promised readers, that I would publish the Advertiser letters on this blog, I now do so.
On 14th May 2010 The Advertiser published the first two letters I draw your attention to. Mike Britland’s letter makes an attack on the person of Peter Thirlwall apparently authored by him as a member of Joe public!
The truth, I believe, is much more interesting than that! Read on below.
Peter Thirlwall has evidently ‘trodden on someone’s corns’!!!!
I also reproduce my letter of the same date, thanking our voters and promising to be back next year stronger and more able to take on the forces of inertia that prevent real change from happening.
Peter Thirlwall himself made a response in the next edition of the Advertiser on 21st May 2010.
Time to establish some facts:
Firstly, the results in question
|General Election 2010|
The breakdown for Independent local election candidates in MacShane’s Rotherham Constituency.
|Rotherham Constituency Local Elections 2010|
|Rotherham Independent Candidates by Ward|
|Brinsworth & Catcliffe||594||10.6|
|Rotherham East||No candidate|
|Rotherham West||No candidate|
Rotherham Independents, you will note above, fought only three Wards out of seven that make up the Rotherham Constituency. Is the ‘MacShane Camp’ seriously suggesting that Peter Thirlwall only received support from the Wards where we had local government candidates?
This part of his argument is at best, seriously flawed at worst, a deliberate attempt to misrepresent the facts?
Research indicates that Independents do much better in local government elections than in General Elections. Why is this? The publicity that Independents can attract at the local level can be considerable compared with the exposure during a General Election where all but mainstream candidates are drowned out by the television campaign.
It was thus across the country, where without a campaigning group to back them, they polled on average a rather meagre couple hundred votes, even Esther Rantzen did poorly. Many Independent Network, Parliamentary Candidates indeed did not get even a hundred votes.
MacShane had promised a similar outcome in Rotherham, but the ‘I will wipe the floor with Thirlwall’ did not materialise. Quite the contrary, in reality, once the electors voice was revealed for what it was, a lacklustre electoral performance by a sitting MP, with only44.4% vote share a meagre 16741 actual votes cast.
This is a disastrous result for MacShane however you put it, a total of 10,111 votes have gone AWOL since 1997! The BNP and UKIP votes were not suppressed! Nothing to boast about there then.
Neither was Peter Thirlwall ‘put to the sword’ metaphorically. Peter Thirlwall’s 2366 votes, a 6.3% vote share, was the truly remarkable outcome in a national context therefore! The best result for Independents in comparable circumstances, anywhere in the country! and he easily saved his deposit of £500!
Denis MacShane is a record breaker and now has the singular distinction, of getting the worst result for a sitting Labour MP against an Independent, in the whole country!
Little wonder his ego was damaged and bruised!
|Mike Sylvester fought Wingfield as a full independent.|
|He is NOT a Rotherham Independent|
Below is the aggregated ‘Independent’ votes including Mike Sylvester, who was not part of the Rotherham Independents but shown here to give the lie to the erroneous claims in the letter of 14th May. It should also be noted that the ‘MacShane Camp’ are not very good with calculations, 2 plus 2 making 5 perhaps?
|Basis of claim in letter above.|
I thought it would be interesting and would complete my analysis if I presented the local election votes for the Labour Party for comparison.
|Rotherham Constituency Labour Vote|
|Cast at local elections May 2010|
|Brinsworth & Catcliffe||2610|
Not sure what they really tell us apart from the fact that Denis received nearly a thousand more votes than the local government candidates did on the same day.
I now turn to the claimed author, Mike Britland.
|Who is Mike Britland – The author of the letter of 14th May 2010?
Well, well! Mike Britland does not, after investigation, appear to be an ordinary member of the public, at all!
Certainly no unbiased commentator is Mike, but as I will demonstrate, he is revealed as a professional, Labour Party activist and member of the ‘MacShane Camp’!
As is this from Denis’s website:
“This site is using MelMel WordPress theme created by andrastudio. Promoted by Mike Britland on behalf of Denis MacShane MP,* hosted by one and one Internet Ltd”.
Finally for now, he shares the same home address as Labour councillor Barry Kaye, very much a Labour loyalist.
Mike Britland then, is not as presented to Advertiser readers. By omission, he misrepresented himself.
Did he also misrepresent himself as author?
Textual analysis would indicate that this letter was put together by more than one contributor and as we also now know that Mike Britland is a fully paid up member of the ‘MacShane Camp’, perhaps that is not surprising!
The pejorative construction placed on the use of words such as ‘charismatic’, ‘ego’ and ‘allowances’ and the general tone of the letter is deeply personal and may be the crucial clue as to why this was sent for publication.
Additionally, the author clearly harbours resentment at Peter Thirlwall’s high profile in the Advertiser!
The preoccupations that are being exercised here would appear more in tune with those known to be held by Denis MacShane than those of any third person? The spiteful nature clearly indicates that the ‘MacShane Camp’ was deeply upset by MacShane’s result and the magnificent 2366 votes Peter Thirlwall polled, very embarrassing!