Earlier this week, Coffee House pointed out that the Labour Party National Executive Committee's decision to exclude local candidates from the Stoke Central candidate short-list might cause trouble. And, lo, trouble it has caused. Similarly unimpressed by the state of Labour democracy, Stoke Labour member Gary Elsby has decided to stand independently and passionately annouced his candidature on the BBC World at One programme today. He has already garnered the support of my colleague Toby Young.
Elsby later stated:
"By taking this decision I feel that I am doing something positive for all the unpaid Labour Party volunteers who
The "puppet" in question is, of course, Tristram Hunt, who is now the official Stoke Central Labour candidate, and though Elsby's ire is not aimed at him so much as the Labour leadership, it is Hunt who will pay the price if Elsby picks up any momentum whatsoever.
Of course, to do that Elsby will have to craft his pitch to the voters very carefully and, alas, there may be evidence that he can sometimes get a bit carried away. There is, you see, a writer who for the last four or five years has been posting messages on political blogs under the name of Gary Elsby Labour and Gary Elsby Stoke-on-Trent. Of course, if this is the same man, these blogs give us unparalleled access into the mind of the candidate. I have edited these for brevity:
Iain Dale's Diary: June 23, 2006 2:13 PM, Gary Elsby said...
"MI5 undermined Wilson.
Iain Dale's Diary June 25, 2006 3:56 PM , Gary Elsby said...
"My point is really quite simple and appears lost to you die hards. The Tories funded Hitlers rising Nazi party and are mostly responsible for what happened next. Your lot tried to stop it by collaborating. Hess, Speer and hundreds of Nazi's colluded with the Tories to accept a Nazi Britain. You have MI5 and MI6 to give you a hand and Labour have no-one. The Falkland islands was a definite Tory plot defining Britain against allcomers. The Tories deliberately weakened our protection in full knowledge of mpending invasion. I'm thinking of writing a book...'The Tories are treacherous,treasonous bastards' Available from all good books shops. Gary"
Dizzy Thinks: 20 Feb 2008 22:44:00 Gary Elsby labour said...
"The only good Tory is a dead Tory. gary"
Dizzy Thinks: 21 Feb 2008 10:43:00
Ministry of Truth: March 20th, 2008 Gary Elsby stoke-on-trent said...
"Tories are lying, cheating bastards. I already knew this. Gary"
So will the swing voters of Stoke Central be able to resist the ol' Nazi/Tory conspiracy pitch? We'll soon see.