There won’t be many results tonight – only the two safe Labour by-elections, Manchester Central and Cardiff South and Penarth, and one of the Police Commissioner elections, Wiltshire, are counting. Everybody else is starting their counts on Friday. However, feel free to discuss results here as the come in (or, more likely, when you wake up in the morning!)

UPDATE: The results in the two safe Labour seat were much as expected – very comfortable Labour holds. Labour held Manchester Central with a towering 69% of the vote with the Lib Dems in second place, a swing of 17% from the Lib Dems to Labour. Everyone else lost their deposit, with the Conservatives only narrowing beating UKIP into third place. Turnout was 18%.

Cardiff South and Penarth has a higher turnout but more modest swings. Labour held the seat easily with 47% of the vote with the Conservatives in second place. There was a swing of 8.4% from the Conservatives to Labour, pretty much in line with national polling (it would be the equivalent of a ten point Labour lead in the national polls).

Finally the only overnight Police result was Wiltshire, which returned a Conservative Commissioner after redistributing second preferences, Labour came in second place (note that in 2010 general election votes in Wiltshire Labour were a distant third behind the Lib Dems,… although we don’t yet know to what extent police votes will reflect general election votes). The two independent candidates came third and last, but had 21% of the vote between them suggesting there may be potential for some Independent victories later on today

64 Responses to “Police and by-election results”

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  1. None of the results will have a long-term impact on voting intention. Trust me.

  2. Initial reports indicate very low turnouts in specific areas and an estimate of 18% overall, tho’ I assume that will rise as postals are counted.

    Rgds, Martyn

  3. …and the excitement is intense. Hartlepool will no longer have directly elected monkeys. Labour win Ardwick on a 20% turnout. Corby turnout at 42%. Wiltshire turnout at 16%.. Hull at <10%. Cardiff South and Penarth turnout at 24%.

    I don't know about you but I'm on the edge of my seat as this great wheel of democracy grinds the grist of the electorate to yield the maize of good government, the unleavened bread of wise counsel, and the Warburton's shrink-wrapped 7-day-fresh loaf of mixed metaphors. Cooking doesn't get tougher than this!

    Regards, Martyn. A-ha!

  4. Manchester Central should be announced anytime now. Labour almost certain to win a very large majority on a low turnout. Possibility of Conservatives losing their deposit in this particular constituency by-election.

  5. Manchester Central result
    Lab 11,532;
    Lib Dems 1,571;
    Tories 754.
    Majority of 9,961, 69% of vote, 16.3% Lib-Lab swing.

  6. Cardiff South and Penarth Full results – Labour majority of 5,334

    Stephen Doughty – Labour – 9,193
    Craig Williams – Conservative – 3,859
    Bablin Molik – Liberal Democrat – 2,103
    Luke Nicholas – Plaid Cymru – 1,854
    Simon Ziegler – UKIP – 1,179
    Anthony Slaughter – Green – 800
    Andrew Jordan – Socialist Labour – 235
    Robert Griffiths – Communist – 213

  7. 16.8% swing from LD to Lab in Manchester Central.

    8.4% swing from Con to Lab in Cardiff South.

    Labour’s 47% share in Cardiff South is the same as the polled in the 2005 general election.

  8. @ Amber Star

    “Libel & defamation law is simple. The person who says it must be able to prove it is true.”

    Oh lord. Is that really the law in the UK? That strikes me as backwards and totalitarian. Now I’m really glad that Congress enacted a law prohibiting any court from enforcing a foreign judgment in a defamation case. :)

    You know, yesterday, as news broke that Washington State authorities were already dismissing charges for marijuana possession (in King County and Peirce County at least….Spokane County has decided to act British and is still trying to enforce a law that is about to expire), I decided that my new favorite President was James Polk. At least for the day. Why? I thought about all the great progressive changes and landmarks in those two states (though not uniform between the states). If not for a belligent and angry Young Hickory nearly starting a third war with your country, those two states would never have become American and would have remained British.

    And thus, things like strict scrutiny for sexual orientation discrimination (Oregon), tearing down the freeways in order to build public rail transit (Oregon), a majority of voters legalizing marijuana completely (Washington), electing openly LGBT officials (Oregon), a majority of voters voting for marriage equality (Washington), completely constitutionally protected po*nography (Oregon), and majorities of voters enacting legalized assisted suicide (both states) ….among other things…….would never have happenned. They would never have been tolerated by your conservative nation.

    Btw…..this is racism.

  9. @ Martyn

    “Manchester Central result
    Lab 11,532;
    Lib Dems 1,571;
    Tories 754.
    Majority of 9,961, 69% of vote, 16.3% Lib-Lab swing.”

    Wow, they got killed. I mean that is a major rejection of both the Lib Dems and the Tories. Now I kinda feel bad that Roger Mexico told me both candidates were gay. Then again, Victory Fund was supporting Richard Tisei (Republican running for MA-6 this year) and I was VERY happy when he lost. Love that you’re staying up late for this. I’m staying up late because I had a 12 hour plus work day and had two Cafe Lattes (including one around 5 in the afternoon). And now I have to get up tommorrow morning early for another long day. I wonder why Corby won’t be counted until tommorrow.

  10. Conservatives have won Wiltshire PCC election comfortably. Poor LibDem result may point to loss of seats there in a General Election – but to whom ? Disparity between pro-Labour swings in Manchester and Cardiff confirms what opinion polls have been saying for 2 years – that the LIbDem vote has collapsed in many places while the Tories have not in reality lost much of their (core) 2010 GE vote. Suggests 2015 GE is Labour’s to lose – but that is always possible !

  11. @ SoCal

    The person bringing the libel or defamation suit has to prove that their reputation was harmed by it & that the damage to their reputation has a financial value. So bringing a case, winning & being awarded a worthwhile amount is not easy.

  12. YouGov
    Con 33 Lab 43 LD 8 UKIP 9 App -33

  13. @ Mr Davies (from a few threads ago)

    “I’m not against a homosexual of any gender marrying another similar one. I’m not religious.

    Then again, I’m not especially for it.

    Since they have civil partneships available, it seems just trouble-making to me.

    Stop whining, start living.”

    You know, I’m not a racist but I really do think that those negroes and those wetbacks should have their own schools, their own restaurants, their own water fountains, their own hotels, their own parks and playgrounds, their own swimming pools, and their own housing. I mean, I have absolutely nothing against them but they should totally live in their own neighborhoods (certainly NOT in Foggy Bottom). I don’t mind those rules either where they have to walk in the stree if accompanying a white person walking on the sidewalk or have to sit on the back of a bus in in favor of white people sitting at the front. I mean (besides not affecting me personally), that’s simply tradition! And I value tradition. And all those who would suggest otherwise are just a bunch of rabble rousing trouble makers looking to stir up trouble in society. You can totally have separate but equal.

    And if any of the negroes or wetbacks feel that this somehow makes them feel inferiror, well then it’s simply their fault for mentally atrributing a badge of inferiority to something that clearly isn’t. Because that would NEVER lead to inequality or true inferirority. That’s just something made up by the troublemakers.

    So to those negroes or wetbacks (or now even some of the Chinks are acting up) feel negatively about this, well they just need to stop whining and enjoy their life! Because their segregated water fountains, schools, restaurants, hospitals, etc are PERFECTLY equal.

    And frankly, if you start suggesting that we all might have to live in the same neighborhoods, go to the same schools, shop in the same stores, and dine in the same restaurants, well next you’re going to suggest that racial intermarriage should be legalized. First of all, the idea of two races mixing is gross and offends many people. So like it shouldn’t be allowed. Second of all, but more importantly, it’s like important to not have interracial marriages because the kids are the ultimate victims and get picked on. So therefore, you would prevent all these kids by simply outlawing the marriages. I mean if a white woman was slutty enough to get knocked up by some negro, what future would that child even have?

    And anyone who would dare question what I said needs to stop whining and just start living.

    (Snark). :)

  14. @ Amber Star

    “The person bringing the libel or defamation suit has to prove that their reputation was harmed by it & that the damage to their reputation has a financial value. So bringing a case, winning & being awarded a worthwhile amount is not easy.”

    Don’t they also have to prove intent? Don’t they also have to prove that what was said is in fact something capable of being defamatory? Also, don’t they have to prove that the statement is not capable of a second (non-defamatory) meaning? Finally, isn’t the burden on the person bringing those charges to prove that the statement is in fact false?

  15. Ipsos Mori poll before weighting for turn-out –
    Con – 30 (-2)
    Lab – 46 (nc)
    Lib – 11 (+2)
    UKIP – 3 (nc)
    So although, IMHO, the MORI is a tad too high for Labour (the huge spike in leader satisfaction also makes it a little suspect, IMHO), weighting doesn’t change the Lab figure – it only hurts the Libs and boosts Cons.

    It’s a shame that Corby wasn’t counted overnight.

    Also I’d imagine the PCC elections are going to play badly for the government now, even if they sweep the board – (not a poll but) the biggest complaint I heard from people is that they wanted to vote but had no idea what they were voting for or who to vote for.
    I tried to explain about the different candidates for my area to my workmates (I did the research) but it looks like the turn-out from my workplace was 2 (not %, just 2 voters).
    Anecdotal but the turn-out has been dreadful overall – hopefully we’ll see some polling in the next few days on why nobody voted.

  16. @ Amber

    I could quote you the restatement of it (which is law in 50 states and the District of Columbia). But I’m rather tired, I have another 12-13 hour day tommorow and I just don’t feel like making the effort and feel like getting a few extra hours of sleep. Lol. :)

    Btw, I was surprised by the last thread on same-sex marriage. It would surprise me if Americans felt more favorably towards same-sex marriage than the Brits do. I have started to count the “undecided” voters in those polls as simply a quasi Bradley effect opposed voter. Also, there are almost no people left anywhere who truthfuly and honestly say yes to civil unions but no to marriage equality. I mean none.

    Washington State is a case in point example. All these voters who said “I’m like against marriage between homosexuals because we should have separate but equal and civil unions are good enough” were given the opportunity to vote in favor of a bill that gave complete civil unions and did everything but use the word marriage. It passed but all those people I just described, voted no.

    That’s because they’re homophobes/heterosexists and they were just saying what they were saying out of quasi-political correctness. As you know, separate but equal is NEVER equal. Now, Washington voters voted in favor of same-sex marriage this year by almost the exact same margin as passed the civil unions (or domestic partnership) law two years ago. Maybe even a slightly larger margin.

    Pollsters should not ask the threeway poll question either and should instead ask simply one question about marriage equality. The civil union stuff is just a waste of time. It honestly satisfies no one.

  17. BBC settle forv £185k + costs.

    Cough up licence payers.

  18. @SoCalLiberal

    Impressive that your law requires you to prove a negative.

    On the GM front (and I’m pro science so not anti-GM), I always think that the use of the word ‘civil’ in the UK ends up confusing people between the concept of civil unions and civil marriages. There is also a possibility that the lies put around by the church about this forcing the celebration by religious groups is having an impact. But I would still bet that if is was put to a vote the vote would be massively in favour.

  19. MARTYN
    @” don’t know about you but I’m on the edge of my seat as this great wheel of democracy grinds”

    And what little ditty did you have for the democratic credentials of Police Authorities ?

    ….remind me what the “turnout” was for their election?

    Care to say how they implemented their maize of good government in South Yorkshire, or North Wales, or Rochdale.?

  20. @ Amber

    Loads of rumours on twitter about the names of the 754 Tory voters in Manc Central- could be some lawsuits on their way :-)

  21. Wilts PCC- 16% turnout.

    Interesting on the second vote preferences. About 34,000 voting for neither of the two main candidates on the first round of voting of which only 12,000 were passed on in the second round to either of the two main candidates.

    The Tory candidate did not even pick up all the UKIP votes on second round and Labour only got 5,000 more votes which was less than half the LIb Dem vote.

  22. I never ceased to be amazed at the low turnout in by-elections. Maybe understandable in the two safe Labour seats called last night but 19% in Manc Central is exceptionally low.

    Corby is only in the 40%’s for turnout when presumably the parties have been throwing everything at it and dragging voters to the polling stations. I just can’t get my head around why it would not be even higher than in a general election.

  23. “70% of people agreed with the statement “Marriage should continue to be defined as a life-long exclusive commitment between a man and a woman”

    Ok then, let’s go with that for a monent. Means that 70% think divorce should be made illegal – “life-long” – and that adultery should be a criminal offence – “exclusive” – puts the man and woman bit into the shade. Or maybe the whole poll is deeply flawed.

  24. Con lose deposit in Manchester Central.


  25. “Also I’d imagine the PCC elections are going to play badly for the government now”
    When I say this – I personally don’t think there was anything illegitimate about the results at all, turn-out was low but most people had the ability to find the information on candidates if they tried and had long enough warning that the election was coming up so voting or not was their own choice – but the public perception seems to be one of a lack of information (because it wasn’t spoon-fed to them).

    But we’ll have to wait for the polling to see if it was actually a feeling of ignorance that kept people away or just general apathy (i.e they wouldn’t have turned out even fully informed).

  26. Socal – I wouldn’t feel bad about the failed gay candidates, the Tory is a sacrificial lamb as they don’t actually have a constituency party and the Lib Dem spent the campaign producing leaflets that made him look like he was standing for Labour.

    Turnout was very low, but even the local Labour party were more interested in Ardwick local byelection.

  27. Yes but Conservatives did beat off UKIP in Manchester Central….

  28. Robin

    ” None of the results will have a long-term impact on voting intention. Trust me.”

    Depends what you regard as long term, I think. The ppc votes will most probably return large numbers of Tories because of the tendency of Tories to turnout, the effect won’t be felt for some years but over the next decade of two I would imagine that the debate on law and order will swing ever rightwards. I believe this is the point about these elections, but then again I am super cynical

  29. Turnout in Manchester Central was 18.2% – Cardiff South and Penarth managed a more respectable 27.4% – which may be the lowest 1918[1] if you exclude a few during the Second World War when according to Wikipedia:

    […]the electoral register was not kept up to date despite significant population movements[2], especially in the London area (which contains all three constituencies [Poplar South (1942) 9.3%; Harrow (1941) 10.7%; North Camberwell (1944) 11.2%]). Consequently only those eligible to vote in the constituency at the outbreak of war were eligible to vote in the by-elections and many voters were physically unable to as they were located elsewhere; in addition the major parties did not compete against each other

    Modern British politics. Only half as dispiriting as the Blitz.

    [1] That said, the article misses that the previous record was actually Barnsley Central with 19.6%, so it’s possible that another one has been missed.

    [2] There may be register issues with Manchester Central too, as it was one of the constituencies that got the biggest rise in registrations before December 2010.

  30. @ Reginald

    Yes- Tories held off UKIP by 5 votes but an important 5 votes for the (non) headlines!

  31. I think the story of last nights elections is the lack of interest in people voting. All politicians are going to have to think about how they get people interested, as a low turnout at the next general election could lead to a very close outcome in many seats. Labour are I think more affected by low turnouts, as I believe older more Conservative voters are most likely to vote. But Conservatives may also be affected, if UKIP supporters are enthused to vote.

  32. @Colin – “And what little ditty did you have for the democratic credentials of Police Authorities ?”

    This is an interesting point. The underlying answer this morning appears to be that very few people actually wish to have a direct democratic say in policing. I suspect very strongly that this is the case, with the majority of people I talk to not seeing the point of this and worrying about over politicising the police.

    Of course, we had political oversight of the police previously through the PA’s, with the politics exercised through local authority appointments, so in some ways it could be argued that direct elections would make little difference to the issue of potential politicisation.

    For my part I viewed the existing oversight as working well, at low cost and enabling good contacts between residents and the police at operational and strategic levels. I saw no reason to change this, and the additional cost for elections that will now raise the prospect of poorly mandated politicians influencing policing is about the worst of all worlds.

  33. The turnout in Wiltshire was 15.8% and 3.3% of those votes were spoilt:,_2012#Wiltshire_Police

    The spoilts are probably a bit more than you would expect for this electoral system – compare the percentages of ‘first vote’ spoilts in the London mayoral elections which varied around 2% on the first vote (2000 2.17%; 2004 2.96%; 2008 1.67%; 2012 1.79%). That’s especially if you consider that only the most motivated and informed voters will have turned out.

    If Wiltshire can only get 15.8%, we could well have single figure turnouts for some authorities. It’s also worth pointing out that the (perfectly respectable) Conservative candidate only got 36.2% on the first ballot – two independents got 21.1% between them, which suggest there may be the odd upset.

    In fact the profile of the winner may hint at the problem for the government from these elections. He’s probably doing a not dissimilar job (with a bit more power) to what he would have done on the old Police Authority. Except now he’s being paid £70,000 a year for it plus all the extra costs for assistants and advisers and strategy units and offices that the job will no doubt require in modern management terms. This may not go down well with the public, if they ever realise what is going on, as well as their being alienated from the way the elections were carried out as several people have already pointed out.

    Incidentally are any of the people who are now praising these elections as a major leap forward in democratic accountability[1], the same people who were so against House of Lords elections on the grounds they were too expensive in these austere times?

    [1] Ignoring the fact that many members of the old police authorities were elected councillors. But then local councils never seem to count in current political dogma, no doubt because some of them are more than 5 miles from Big Ben.

  34. UKIP 5th in Cardiff.

    So… not the voice of the silent majority after all…..

  35. @roger Mexico – very apt points.

    I’ve watched for a good long while now the drift of power and authority from local councils. It started in earnest in the Thatcher years, and was continued by New Labour, with their strategy of ring fenced funding and central diktats, and is being continued now, with council tax freezes, divulging of responsibility to other officers or the private sector, and the breakup of things like education services.

    While the balance of responsibility between Westminster, local government, service providers and the voter is complex, and I wouldn’t claim by any means that all local authorities were or are wonderful, the long term trend has actually led to more remoteness in terms of voter engagement, and less and less interest in local politics.

    I was also staggered to learn of the £70K price tag for these elected officials. That’s outrageous. I am almost certain that had Labour proposed a new raft of local officials to do a job that was being done perfectly well already, being paid three times the national average wage plus administration costs, posters like @Colin might have had something negative to say about that.

  36. ‘The spoilts are probably a bit more than you would expect for this electoral system ‘

    Perhaps it is not the electoral system, perhaps it’s people who care enough to go and vote but really saw no point to the exercise and so deliberately spoilt the vote…

  37. @ SoCal

    Don’t they also have to prove intent? No – It’s the outcome/ result that matters not the intent.

    Don’t they also have to prove that what was said is in fact something capable of being defamatory? – Yes, they do.

    Also, don’t they have to prove that the statement is not capable of a second (non-defamatory) meaning? – Not necessarily. Again, it is the outcome/ result which is important if the defendant could reasonably have foreseen that the first (defamatory) meaning could just as easily be inferred from the context as the second (non-defamatory) meaning.

    Finally, isn’t the burden on the person bringing those charges to prove that the statement is in fact false? No. There’s the presumption that the defamed person is ‘innocent’ until shown to be ‘guilty’.

  38. @Alec
    Excellent 9.37 post! Your first para especially. Spot on.

  39. ken taylor quoted on the G:

    “PCC.Election.Coventry.6% turnout+ postal =. 11% as a whole.Two polling stations there appears to have been no votes cast”

    No votes cast at all at two polling stations!

  40. @Colin

    “…And what little ditty did you have for the democratic credentials of Police Authorities ? ….remind me what the “turnout” was for their election? Care to say how they implemented their maize of good government in South Yorkshire, or North Wales, or Rochdale.?…”

    I was doing an Alan Partridge impersonation, as evidenced by the “Cooking doesn’t get tougher than this” line and the “A-Ha!” at the end.

    Regards, Martyn

  41. Lots of people have contrasted the Tory attitude to turnout between PCC elections and Union strike votes. But what about the reasoning behind reducing the numbers of MPs to 600?

    Less democracy (in contrast to attitude to PCC where more democracy is important) and of course the “cheaper” argument. Contrast the expense of running these hardly supported police elections with the amount you might save by cutting the MPs in Parliament.

    Also there are the unelected Lords. We don’t elect them but we do need elected Police Commissioners?

  42. Lib Dems are saying they think they have around 50% of the votes cast in South Lakes area, on a 23% turnout. This is Tim Farron country, and may be a straw in the wind that suggests those predicting a total LD wipeout in 2015 are wrong. They have always been great scrappers on the doorstep and have traditionally been good at protecting incumbents.

    [I said ‘scrappers’ on the doorstep…..]

  43. At the Corby by-election count, BBC political correspondent Robin Brant says early stacks show Labour leading the Tories by more than two to one.

  44. Alex

    But Tim farron is likely to be the exception rather than the rule, but we will see

  45. ‘Also there are the unelected Lords. We don’t elect them but we do need elected Police Commissioners?’

    hear, hear….

  46. Nigel Farage tweeting that it’s ‘nip and tuck’ between Tory and UKIP for 2nd place in Corby.

    Too early to believe this kind of thing, but if it does turn out to be true, this could be quite a headline.

  47. IMO – TF leader in waiting even if an old guard does a temporary stint.

  48. That would be a headline and send the Tories into a death spiral of infighting I should imagine

  49. Jam jam

    Well no one else has positioned themselves for the leadership except TF so it looks like a walk, but most expect vince to be the temporary leader or should I say the transitional leader

  50. @NickP

    The real vote on strikes is how many turn up for work. PCS have held many strikes but none were ever effective. RMT on the other hand normally get nearly 100% off work. If only 18% vote on a strike you know it’s not going anywhere.

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