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JohnM

Red Len ..strikes again?

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Point of information

The article claims that:

"David Miliband won most votes among Labour MPs and MEPs and Labour party members. But Ed Miliband prevailed after the main union leaders agreed to back him."

This is not true. MilliD won more votes amongst Labour MPs, MEPs and Labour Party, but MilliE did not prevail after the main union leaders agreed to back him. What got him over the line was the vote of affiliated members of the Labour Party.

The block vote was abolished years ago.

A minor, but significant point.

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Ed seems to be assailed from all sides. Blair to the right of him, McLuskey to the left of him.  Labour needs to re-learn the lessons of the eighties. A divided party will never be elected.  That's not to say that they should just sit still and do nothing.  I went along with the Blair project.  And things did get better, but nothing really changed.  Labour had thirteen years in power and compared to the Attlee government changed very little.  Is Labour about getting into power and running the Tory show with a little more compassion or about getting into power and really changing things for the better for the vast majority of British citizens.

This government has already eaten into employment rights and is gradually demolishing welfare by means of divide and rule.  If Labour do get in in 2015, are they going to live with this? Because if they are what's the point of them?

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Point of information

The article claims that:

"David Miliband won most votes among Labour MPs and MEPs and Labour party members. But Ed Miliband prevailed after the main union leaders agreed to back him."

This is not true. MilliD won more votes amongst Labour MPs, MEPs and Labour Party, but MilliE did not prevail after the main union leaders agreed to back him. What got him over the line was the vote of affiliated members of the Labour Party.

The block vote was abolished years ago.

A minor, but significant point.

 

Genuine question: how is that different from the block vote and how is the vote now cast by each individual member and then by each union?

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Genuine question: how is that different from the block vote and how is the vote now cast by each individual member and then by each union?

For most of the history of the Labour Party, the leader was elected by a straight ballot of MPs.

In the late 70s, I think, that was replaced by an electoral college system of block voting spread across the MPs, the CLPs (which are the local Constituency Labour Parties), and Affiliated Societies which are Trade Unions and other groups (eg the Fabian Society)

Under this system each group in the electoral college would decide by itself how to choose which way to vote and would then cast all their votes that way. For the Unions, the mechanism was generally that the Union leadership would decide on their behalf. For each CLP, they would hold a meeting to vote on it and then a delegate would cast the entire CLP vote. The number of block votes a CLP or Society got was proportional to their number of members.

This system was replaced by the current electoral college system whereby three secret ballots are conducted. One of MPs and MEPs, one of the party membership, and one of affiliated members. The leaders of unions can certainly make it known which way they would like their members to vote, but they have no power to make anyone vote one way or the other. It is not quite one member one vote because MPs and MEPs could theoretically vote in all three ballots, but it's pretty close.

This is all done under a transferable vote system.

You might not like Ed M or the Labour Party, but after the dust settled about 320,000 people voted in the Labour leadership election and roughly 170,000 of them voted for Ed Miliband and 150,000 voted for David Miliband. The idea that Ed M won because he's in hock to some mythical union barons is laughable. He won because more Labour party members in the affiliated section of the electoral college voted for him.

The Labour leadership election has probably the largest electorate for any single political post in the UK other than the London Mayor. It has its flaws but it is utterly ludicrous to suggest, as the press sometimes do, that the process of choosing a Labour leader is not open and democratic.

I'm not sure that's very clear, but there you have it.

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For most of the history of the Labour Party, the leader was elected by a straight ballot of MPs.

In the late 70s, I think, that was replaced by an electoral college system of block voting spread across the MPs, the CLPs (which are the local Constituency Labour Parties), and Affiliated Societies which are Trade Unions and other groups (eg the Fabian Society)

Under this system each group in the electoral college would decide by itself how to choose which way to vote and would then cast all their votes that way. For the Unions, the mechanism was generally that the Union leadership would decide on their behalf. For each CLP, they would hold a meeting to vote on it and then a delegate would cast the entire CLP vote. The number of block votes a CLP or Society got was proportional to their number of members.

This system was replaced by the current electoral college system whereby three secret ballots are conducted. One of MPs and MEPs, one of the party membership, and one of affiliated members. The leaders of unions can certainly make it known which way they would like their members to vote, but they have no power to make anyone vote one way or the other. It is not quite one member one vote because MPs and MEPs could theoretically vote in all three ballots, but it's pretty close.

This is all done under a transferable vote system.

You might not like Ed M or the Labour Party, but after the dust settled about 320,000 people voted in the Labour leadership election and roughly 170,000 of them voted for Ed Miliband and 150,000 voted for David Miliband. The idea that Ed M won because he's in hock to some mythical union barons is laughable. He won because more Labour party members in the affiliated section of the electoral college voted for him.

The Labour leadership election has probably the largest electorate for any single political post in the UK other than the London Mayor. It has its flaws but it is utterly ludicrous to suggest, as the press sometimes do, that the process of choosing a Labour leader is not open and democratic.

I'm not sure that's very clear, but there you have it.

Just for fun, because I'm procrastinating and Aussie TV is awful, the Tories have rounds of ballots of MPs to get down to two candidates and then a ballot of members, and I think the Lib Dems have a straight membership ballot using AV.

It is interesting to note that Clegg actually lost the overall Lib Dem leadership vote to the notorious liar and criminal Chris Huhne, but some of the ballots were delayed in the Christmas post and missed the deadline so Clegg prevailed.

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Thanks, Steve.  One more question: does each affiliated member (as I understand it, they are members by virtue of being a member of another organisation..i.e. a union) get an individual  (postal?) vote that is counted in the Affiliated  Societies secret ballot??

 

 

oh, and another one. Does the vote of an individual affiliated member count the same as the vote of an MP?  I've looked here: http://www2.labour.org.uk/results  but can't quite make out how the three secret ballots are amalgamated.

 

For the record,  as someone who does not support Labour, the party would be far better off without Alexander and Byrne.

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Thanks, Steve.  One more question: does each affiliated member (as I understand it, they are members by virtue of being a member of another organisation..i.e. a union) get an individual  (postal?) vote that is counted in the Affiliated  Societies secret ballot??

 

 

oh, and another one. Does the vote of an individual affiliated member count the same as the vote of an MP?  I've looked here: http://www2.labour.org.uk/results  but can't quite make out how the three secret ballots are amalgamated.

An affiliate member gets a postal vote which is counted towards the Affiliated Societies part of the electoral college. You are correct in your understanding - an affiliate member is someone who is a member of a socialist society affiliated to the Labour Party, like the Fabians or the Jewish Labour Movement - there are about twenty of these. You can also be an affiliated member by joining an affiliated trade union and paying the political levy. Not all unions are affiliated - Unison, the MU and the GMB are, but the RMT was actually thrown out about 10 years back and now have no connection with the party.

Because there are over a million affiliate members, their individual votes count for rather less than an individual vote of an MP.

The ballot is split into thirds. One third for MPs/MEPs, one third for full Party members, one third for Affiliate members. The vote totals are calculated by taking the straight average across all three electoral colleges. So if you have a 25% share of the MP/MEP vote, a 30% share of the members vote and a 35% share of the affiliate vote then you have a total vote share of 30% - the average of the three. You therefore see how an MPs vote outweighs a party member's vote, which outweighs an affiliate members vote. It's notable that the turnout varies dramatically - pretty much all the MPs voted last time out, about 80% of party members and only about 15% of affiliate members.

I don't know if members of the Co-operative Party are affiliated members of Labour. It possible they are, but I'm not sure.

One flaw in the system is that some people can vote more than once. An MP will also be by definition a party member, and may also be a trade union or affiliated socialist society member, so they will have at least 2 votes and possibly more. But their vote as an MP will be massively the most important given the relative size of the electorate in the three colleges.

It's then complicated by being an AV system, with the last place candidate dropping out and second preference votes being thrown back into the pot until someone gets over 50%. Interestingly, David Miliband was in the lead until the very last round when Ed Balls dropped out and his second preference votes were thrown in. That allowed Ed Miliband to snatch a late winner.

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For the record,  as someone who does not support Labour, the party would be far better off without Alexander and Byrne.

For the record, I actively support Labour and I am not impressed by either of them.

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Me too, it ought to be permanent unless we can get an exemption for deportation of non-nationals.

 

So in order to rid us of one or two undesirable individuals you would be happy to scrap the rights of millions?  :wacko:

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An affiliate member ...etc

Thanks, Steve.

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So in order to rid us of one or two undesirable individuals you would be happy to scrap the rights of millions?  :wacko:

 

Millions.

 

His own rights included.

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The convention on human rights is too important just to junk to get rid of 2 undesirables. If we're worried about falling foul of it maybe we should be asking why, and what other options are open to us that don't violate their human rights? Maybe we should obtain some evidence against them not based on torture? (which has always been known to produce dodgy results)

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Thanks, Steve.

No problem.

You can see from the structure of the Labour Party I've described why it's often called the "Labour movement". The actual party is part of a much larger network of organisations in a way that isn't really the case for the other major parties.

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oh, and another one. Does the vote of an individual affiliated member count the same as the vote of an MP?  I've looked here: http://www2.labour.org.uk/results  but can't quite make out how the three secret ballots are amalgamated.

It's quite sweet that both Miliband's voted for each other..

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there seem to be two themes here.  The raeson why I started the thread was to hear from the many Labour supporters on here what they thought  about the comment that "The Unite general secretary claimed that the Labour leader would be "cast into the dustbin of history" unless he abandons support for David Miliband's campaign managers, Jim Murphy and Douglas Alexander."

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It's quite sweet that both Miliband's voted for each other..

and I think Diane Abbot voted for herself.

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and I think Diane Abbot voted for herself.

 

Are we supposed to be surprised by that fact? :unsure:

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Are we supposed to be surprised by that fact? :unsure:

All the candidates voted for themselves first. It would be a bit odd if they didn't..

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All the candidates voted for themselves first. It would be a bit odd if they didn't..

 

"I don't believe in my own policies but I expect everyone else to ..."

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there seem to be two themes here.  The raeson why I started the thread was to hear from the many Labour supporters on here what they thought  about the comment that "The Unite general secretary claimed that the Labour leader would be "cast into the dustbin of history" unless he abandons support for David Miliband's campaign managers, Jim Murphy and Douglas Alexander."

I think he's right to some extent. I think the "Blairites" want to fight the 1997 election all over again, but this isn't the late nineties.

From an electoral point of view, Blairism was an attempt capture the middle ground. It worked, brilliantly so. But I think at the moment the problem isn't getting Tories and Lib Dems to vote Labour, it's getting non-voters to voting Labour.

From a policy perspective, I thought Blairism was too timid in 1997, and it's way too timid now. "Thatcherism with a human face" will not work now. That time is gone and things have moved on.

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