Said and done
Wednesday, May 09, 2007
Without doubt, the most common criticism of politicians is that they allow torrents of unmitigated tosh to spew forth from their mouths at every available opportunity. Normal people can tell that they are talking complete rubbish. For some strange reason, politicians cannot.
This election campaign was no different.
Here's my handy guide to what they said, as opposed to what actually happened:
Rhodri Morgan (Labour)
"If we don’t get our vote out and the three minor parties do, a Tory-led coalition will trundle Wales backwards as a country at a rate of knots.
This election is the choice between a return to a grim Tory past and a bright Labour future.
This election is about that stark choice between seeing the dole queues continue to get shorter and shorter under Labour or risking a return to 120,000 people on the dole in Wales, with the Tories in charge."
Imagine my disappointment when I woke up on May 4th and, despite there being no Labour majority, Wales wasn't hurtling backwards at a rate of knots outside my window. Neither was there any kind of Tory-led coalition to speak of. Nor a 120,000-long dole queue snaking down the street. The only queue was for the ice cream van down the road, and I don't think any of those people had even bothered to vote.
Ieuan Wyn Jones (Plaid)
"We can win five seats in North Wales. Me as the First Minister elected from Anglesey (if the party does well in the rest of Wales) and Dafydd Wigley on the list aswell with Janet Ryder”"
Number of seats won by Plaid in North Wales: 4
Number of votes between Dafydd Wigley and a return to Welsh politics: 6,644
Nick Bourne (Conservative)
"Plaid Cymru's vague aspirations and wild spending plans will not fool voters. They are a clear indication that the nationalists are neither responsible nor a serious political party."
Number of seats won by Plaid Cymru: 15 (+3)
Number of seats won by the Conservatives: 12 (+1)
Conclusion: Voters were 'fooled' by Plaid Cymru's 'vague aspirations and wild spending plans'. Idiots.
Mike German (Lib Dems)
"The more votes we get, the more seats we win, the more influence we will have in the new Assembly government.
Our party has great hopes on the regional lists. But I have to tell you the regional list is more misunderstood than Richard Brunstrom in a room full of Labour MPs.
We can win extra seats in every part of Wales."
Number of extra seats won in every party of Wales: 0
Number of extra seats won in any part of Wales: 0
Lib Dem share of the regional vote in 2003: 12.7%
Lib Dem share of the regional vote in 2007: 11.8%
Number of leaflets delivered by Lib Dem activists: 4,367,892,562,099,454,235,861...
posted by Blamerbell @ 2:07 am,
- At 9:59 am, Matt Wright said...
Amusing and well written. Re: Plaid, still think the spending plans were pretty wild. Their cohorts across Wales were also claiming wild predictions of winning various first past the post seats (including bogus poll bar charts) that they then trailed way behind in when the real vote ocurred.
- At 11:01 am, cymrumark said...
Oh Matt are you talking about me and my bar charts:) What was bogus about it? It was what it said it was a reflection of the poll taken in March 2007 by Beaufort. If we had got the the other two polls in time for our print deadline we would have used those in stead. All of them showed the Tories third across Wales...all of them proved correct.
- At 11:28 am, Penddu said...
Trust an ex-Lib Dem candidate to revert to a bar chart.....
- At 11:35 am, said...
Surely there's one thing that every other Party can agree on - Lib Dem bar charts are a bloody disgrace. Misleading doesn't quite cover it! And you know what they say (possibly) - if you can't trsut someone with a graph, don't give them two seats in the frigging cabinet.
- At 3:22 pm, Daran said...
"All of them showed the Tories third across Wales...all of them proved correct."
Only up to a point, surely. The Conservatives were third on the constituency vote by a small margin, but ahead and second on the total regional count.
If the polls had been spot on they would presumably have been shown as level pegging, so small was the gap between the two opposition parties on both polls.
- At 3:28 pm, Marcusian said...
The lib dems campaign material is always laughable, using Tony Blair's picture with George Bush yet arguing that they are about Welsh Issues. The bar charts are a joke, i really think there needs to be some real scrutiny of them, because i saw some of the ridiculous claims made by the Lib Dems in Newport East. They used the same 'its a choice between a lib dem or Blair's man' juxtaposed next to a picture of Blair and Bush- John Griffiths had gone on record against the Iraq war and marched against. Even the Lib dem members had a chuckle with us at the count...
- At 3:45 pm, Blamerbell said...
In terms of actual votes, didn't teh Tories outscore Plaid by about 4,000?
And Marcus, Newport East wasn't Newport East one of the few Lib Dem success stories of the night? Admit it, they had you crapping your pants:)
- At 4:38 pm, Marcusian said...
We were bricking it a bit, but that doesnt take away from the fact that we had to endure their dirty local campaign. I personally would have returned the mud-slinging because some of it was terrible, but then i was not the candidate...
I think that the fact Newport East was in danger is another sign of how things need to change within Welsh Labour...
- At 5:05 pm, Daran said...
"In terms of actual votes, didn't teh Tories outscore Plaid by about 4,000?"
Depends on which ballot you're looking at.
In the combined constituency vote, Plaid got 219,121 (22.4%), narrowly beating the Conservatives 218,730 (22.4%).
On the combined regional ballot, Plaid got 204,757 (21.0%) and the Conservatives were second on 209,153 (21.4%).
So, as I said earlier, the polls would have been spot on if they'd showed them level pegging.
There was a clear second in Wales on the basis of seats in the Assembly - which is what counts - there was no clear second in terms of votes cast.
And I don't need a bar chart to prove it ;)
- At 5:22 pm, said...
/I think that the fact Newport East was in danger is another sign of how things need to change within Welsh Labour... //
Too late. Labour started going down the shute when the SDP was formed and finally landed on it's a** under Kinnock's leadership.
Blair formed New Labour from similar principles to Roy Jenkins' SDP. Almost as right as the Tories. Roy Jenkins himself agreed that Blairs' visions were close to his. Remember, Blair made it clear he was not going to let anything stop the type of government he wanted. Remember the unions? And that is what we have had.
Now where does Welsh Labour fit in this? Nowhere. What is in existence now is a sham party.