Local blogger Appealing of Ealing comments on my posting on Ealing Labour’s performance in the European elections thus:
â€œLabourâ€™s vote share went from 32.0% in 2004 to 25.7% in 2009, a drop of 6.3%â€
Which is almost exactly the percentage won by Jan Jananayagam, the pro-Tamil candidate. Isnâ€™t it really the case that she has split the Labour vote at a time when when feelings are running high in the Tamil community. What do you think the outcome would have been had Jananayagam not been on the ballot paper?
I don’t know if Appealling of Ealing is a Labour activist but I suspect that many South Asian people across the borough of Ealing are fairly fed up with having their votes taken for granted by Labour types. Why do they imagine that the many hard working, entrepreneurial, professional, middle class South Asians are going to slavishly vote Labour for all time? It is easy for Labour to write off the five ex-Labour councillors in Southall wards who defected to the Tories in July 2007 as traitors. But I think they may have sensed that not only is UK politics on the turn but that Southall’s South Asian community is not going to simply carry on being Labour’s cannon fodder for ever and a day.