By-election win shows Lib Dems are only challengers to Labour


A swing of just 3.1% is needed for the Lib Dems to win East Dunbartonshire

A sensational by-election result in Midlothian yesterday shows that discontented Labour supporters are turning to the Lib Dems to challenge Tony Blair in the upcoming General Election.

In Dalkeith Woodburn ward, the Lib Dems achieved a sensational 24% swing to wrest the seat from Labour. The Tories languished in fifth place with just 24 votes:

Ray Prior (Lib Dem): 742

Lab: 418

SNP: 179

SSP: 48

Tory: 24

Commenting on the result, Jo Swinson said: “In East Dunbartonshire, we need just a 3% swing to beat Labour, although 24% would be very welcome! Congratulations to Ray Prior and

his team for a fantastic victory.

“This result suggests a growing trend that former Labour supporters are sick and tired of being taken for granted by Tony Blair’s party and see the Liberal Democrats as the only viable alternative. No-one trusts Michael Howard to keep his promises – his spending plans simply

don’t add up. The SNP are simply irrelevant in Westminster.”

Last week the Sunday Mail reported a 6% swing from Labour to the Lib Dems since the last General Election across Scotland, with both Conservative and SNP support falling. In February, Scotland on Sunday reported a 7% swing. Both results would see Liberal Democrat candidate Jo Swinson elected in East Dunbartonshire by a comfortable margin.


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