“The results in the Leicester South and Birmingham Hodge Hill Parliamentary by-elections show that Labour can be beaten in the East Dunbartonshire constituency and that only the Liberal Democrats can do it,” says Jo Swinson, commenting on the surge to the Liberal Democrats in the July 15th elections.
“On the swing in Leicester South, the Liberal Democrats would comfortably gain East Dunbartonshire from Labour.
“People in East Dunbartonshire are hurt that Labour has broken so many promises.
“Above all the public don’t feel Tony Blair can be trusted. It’s a sign of the times, though, that they didn’t trust the Conservatives either.
“As the Tories are the ‘official opposition’, they should have been the obvious choice for those disillusioned with the so-called Government, but they weren’t.
“The Tories were never even in the race. It’s an extraordinary reflection of how much Michael Howard’s party is in decline that their popularity is falling and they finished with two poor third places.
“Leicester is not, as the Conservatives are trying to make out, a ‘difficult’ inner city seat: the Tories held it under Thatcher, and they made huge efforts to win.
“The people of Leicester voted Liberal Democrat because of interest in Liberal Democrat policies, as well as disillusionment with Labour.”