Nov 8 2012

No English Democrat Police Candidates

We’re pleased to announce that there will be no English Democrats standing for Police & Crime Commissioner posts in any of the 5 East Midlands counties next week. Neither Elliott Fountain (Lincs) or Alan Spencer-Bennett (Northants) made it onto the ballot. That means that, UKIP aside, there are no far right candidates in the region.

We’d like to think our exposé had a little something to do with Fountain’s withdrawal – after all what party craving respectability would let an openly islamaphobic man, who can’t keep his arse in his trousers and supports far right violence against the police, run for head of the local police force? It’s about as sensible as a drug-taking anti-drugs candidate… Still, we’d have loved to have seen him come last with 25 votes again.


Sep 2 2012

English Democrats announce Corby candidate

The “fash-lite” English Democrats have announced that David Wickham will be their candidate for the parliamentary by-election for the Corby seat, to be held in November.  Wickham’s main concern will be to scrap with the BNP and UKIP for votes, as the ED is attempting to carve itself a niche in the grubby world of nationalist politics.   Expect a fair measure of further right-wing infighting as the election gets closer.


Jul 13 2012

BNP third in Corby by-election

A Council byelection for the East Ward in Corby was held yesterday.  Local organiser Gordon Riddell came third for the BNP, beating the Libdems into fourth place.  The fascists polled 9.4%, which was down 0.7% from 2011’s ballot in the same ward.  The BNP see this as a promising locale, and have been aiming to make political capital out of recent allegations of sexual grooming of vulnerable girls by older men, some of whom are Asian, in Corby.  As we have discussed in the light of similar cases elsewhere, this is a subject which the far right think they can harness to their own advantage.  The BNP will be disappointed that they failed to increase their vote share on Thursday, but seem likely to continue attempting to exploit tensions in Northants.


Jun 29 2012

BNP get 7% in Sileby

The council by-election held in Sileby, Leics. yesterday has declared results.  The BNP’s Charnwood organiser Steve “warm seat” Denham received 93 votes, just over 7% of the poll, and beat the Libdems (who did not stand here in the previous election) into fourth.  This result falls short of what the BNP hoped to achieve, with Denham talking up his chances to anyone who would listen before the election.  Although Charnwood is an area where the BNP have received reasonable support in the past, the BNP’s general (terminal?) malaise seems to have made itself felt in Sileby too.


Jun 24 2012

BNP to stand in Sileby

The BNP are trying their luck in the Charnwood Borough Council Election in Sileby, Leics. which will be held on Thursday June 28th.  Their candidate is Steve Denham, the party’s Charnwood organiser.  Denham, who lives  nearby in Syston, claims good support in the area and fancies his chances of not finishing last; this is an area where the BNP would hope to poll well and we’ll be watching with interest.


May 4 2012

BNP fail in Derby

It looks like the BNP have had a really bad election. Locally their loss of two seats in Amber Valley has been compounded by their failure to make a breakthrough in Derby.

Admirer of Mussolini’s Blackshirts and “Grand Dictator of Derbyshire” Paul Hilliard was the most successful of the three  candidates they stood in the city, but even he only managed to get 459 votes (14.7%) and come third, although this put him ahead of the LibDems. Vanessa Griffin also beat the LibDems, taking 270 votes (8.1%) while Julie Fuller beat the tories into fourth, securing 302 votes (11.9%).

Chaddesden

  • Care Ian (Lib Dem) 134
  • Hassall Steve (Con) 836
  • Hilliard Paul (BNP) 459
  • MacDonald Anne (Lab) 1,689

Derwent

  • Fuller Julie (BNP) 302
  • Hudson Richard (Lib Dem) 689
  • Redfern Margaret (Lab) 1,314
  • Roulstone Nicola (Con) 239

Spondon

  • Froggatt Steve (Lab) 1,305
  • Griffin Vanessa (BNP) 270
  • King Simon (Lib Dem) 153
  • Williams Evonne (Con) 1,587

(Results taken from This is Derbyshire.)


May 4 2012

NF trounced in Langley Mill

Tim Knowles standing for the National Front (NF) in the Amber Valley ward of Langley Mill and Aldercar came third, in a contest which saw labour take the seat from the Tories, receiving a paltry 99 votes.

Knowles was the only NF candidate standing in the East Midlands in yesterday’s local elections. However, across the country the NF was contesting more seats than it had in any election since 1982.

Knowles had previously managed to get himself elected unopposed  (i.e. no one else bothered to stand, so he won by default) to Langley Mill Parish Council last year, but was booted off the council after only a few months having failed to fill in the declaration of acceptance or to attend a single meeting.

While 99 votes and third place will be disappointing for Knowles (and heartening for anti-fascists), on a turnout of 1,137 (27.7% of those registered to vote) it actually amounts to 8.7% of the vote. In a General Election that would be enough to get back his deposit (although Parliamentary constituencies are obviously larger than borough council wards).

That he achieved even this much and the apparent disinterest of much of the electorate underlines the extent to which the mainstream parties have ignored areas like Langley Mill. Anti-fascists cannot afford to make the same mistake.


Apr 23 2012

French lessons

The huge vote for the National Front (FN) in yesterday’s French presidential elections is a salutary reminder of the threat posed by the fascist parties.

Provisional results suggest that Marine Le Pen secured 18.01% of the vote on a turnout of 80.16%. This is higher than the 16.86% of the vote secured by her father, Jean Marie Le Pen, in the 2002 election when he came second, making his way to the second round.

While anti-fascists (and anybody with any sense) should breath a sigh of relief that the FN did not make it to the second round again we should not assume that the threat the party pose has disappeared. The most immediate danger is the influence it will exert on the political mainstream.

According to the Guardian, “Sarkozy had run a rightwing campaign from the outset, chasing voters on the extreme right by focusing on immigration, saying there were too many foreigners in France and following Le Pen’s lead in claiming unlabelled halal meat was a key concern of French voters. He had recently stressed conservative family values and the Christian heritage of France.”

Having failed to win the first round (the first president in modern France to do so) he is on the back foot and there is a danger that he will swing even further to the right order to try and pick up some of Le Pen’s voters. FN supporters are strongly anti-establishment so it is far from guaranteed that Le Pen votes will transfer to Sarkozy in real numbers, but by that point the damage will have been done.

This is not a trend unique to the France, as Sean Birchall notes, “Unlike its 1930s forebears, what characterises fascism today is not the ‘putsch’ but what anti-fascists have referred to as ‘the drift'” (Beating the Fascists, p17). The potential impact of this drift is apparent in Denmark. There, the far-right People’s Party (PP) secured 12.0% of the vote in 2001 and shored up a Conservative-Liberal coalition. In exchange for their cooperation, the coalition adopted a number of the PP’s key demands, crucially strong restrictions on immigration. As a result, Denmark has what the PP has described as Europe’s strictest immigration laws. (Danish TV series The Killing II features a dramatised account of the same process pushing a relatively liberal government to adopt authoritarian anti-terrorist measures.)

Even in the UK where far-right electoral success remains modest, we have seen fascists exerting a rightward pull on mainstream parties. In 2007, Margaret Hodge Labour MP for Barking, where the BNP had made considerable gains, sought to take on the BNP on their own territory by arguing that British residents should get priority in council house allocation.

Nobody should assume that these sorts of concessions constitute an anti-fascist strategy. Swinging to the right can only serve to legitimise far-right ideas and give confidence to their practitioners. In any case, once the mainstream have conceded enough to the far-right, voters may well ask themselves why they don’t just vote for the real thing anyway.


Feb 15 2012

“Mr. Three Percent” comes last in Northants

In the Northamptonshire County Council By-election for Towcester held on February 9th, we were pleased to see the BNP’s Mark Plowman on typical form, finishing last.  We also applaud his consistency – he received just 3.1% of votes cast, almost exactly the same percentage he achieved in District elections last May.  It doesn’t seem likely the BNP will threaten to do well in Northants any time soon, but we’ll be watching Plowman’s political “career” with interest…break the mould and go all out for 2% or less next time, Mark!