Tuesday, 18 November 2008

Mile End By-Election

With only two days left before people vote in a Tower Hamlets local by-election which could be a crucial indicator in the way London’s East End votes in any forthcoming General Election.
A four-cornered battle for Mile End East ward will take place on November 20.

Candidates represent all four parties at the Town Hall—the controlling Labour group is up against Conservative, Liberal Democrat and Respect opposition parties.

But all eyes are on the two current MPs whose present constituency boundary slices through Mile End.

Respect MP George Galloway in Bethnal Green & Bow to the west of the line is switching to neighbouring Poplar & Limehouse constituency to the east, to take on Labour’s Jim Fitzpatrick at the next General Election.

Mile End East sits on the current boundary between the two rival MPs’ constituencies and the November 20 poll could show which way voters are likely to go at the General Election in this deprived inner city borough. This will be an interesting contest because its outcome will give an indication as to the future fate for Galloway’s half of Respect following the split last year with the SWP. My own feeling is that it can go any way depending on who is able to influence best the leaders in the mosques. I will have more to say about this by-election later on.

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