Friday 30 March 2012

Why we voted Respect in Bradford West

There are a myriad reasons why 18,341 people voted for George Galloway in last nights by-election - but here is a few of them:

The Labour candidate took his vote for granted, and simply did not connect with the people. George took the electorate seriously.

Mr Hussein (Labour) refused to take part in hustings alongside George Galloway, and the only showing he made on the BBC was pretty poor. Labour should never have appeared to be so defensive if they expected to win.

Mr Hussein has been deputy labour leader during a time when the party has implemented unpopular cuts in the local community. He has been punished for the perception of our local governments lack of opposition to the Tory Party's cuts agenda.

The national Labour party does not look like a credible opposition to the Tories. Ed Miliband needs to represent and defend ordinary working people.

Within the Muslim community, issues such as Palestine and the Arab Spring really do matter. The Respect Party understood this.

Bradford has a strong anti-war tradition. The previous MP Marsha Singh was popular (increasing his Labour majority in 2010) because he voted against the war in Iraq and against spending on Trident. George Galloway was the only candidate who was clear on these issues.

Many people knew Abu-bakr Rauf, who died so tragically last week. He was a kind, gentle, dedicated activist for Respect, Palestine and local community matters. Many voted to make his last wishes come true.

Ultimately, In Bradford West, we voted because of a lack of trust in the all of 3 major parties. The Tory party  lost more votes than Labour did. (they received 12,000 votes in 2010 and were down to just over 2000 last night)

Labour Party analyse that claimed people voted for George because of his big brother status is an insult to the integrity of the Bradford voters. Galloway has many flaws, and may well be accused of being a 'popularist' but at least he also espouses principles that ring true with the principles of the people of Bradford.

The first time I was arrested at Faslane Nuclear Base, George Galloway was arrested alongside me. I just don't see many politicians with those sorts of convictions any more.

Let this be a wake up call to all the parties. We don't expect perfection, but we do expect our Members of Parliament to have a serious commitment to issues of justice, equality and peace! We will now do our duty to hold George Galloway to account. Bradford's political map changed last night, and so will the make up of the city council in May's local elections. Respect candidates will clearly deal out heavy damage to all the three parties. They have got to learn to listen to their electorate and never take us for granted.


  1. Chris,

    Its sad but not surprising to see the mainstream, corporate media's divisive narrative over Respect & George Galloway's tremendous victory. The people of Bradford West have truly spoken at the ballots.

    I would like to thank you for your words and for the tribute you paid to our dear friend Abu-Bakr Rauf.

    His hard work and dedication have been rewarded, I just wish he were here to see it.

    Best Regards

    The Akh

  2. Many thanks, Chris. It looks as though the whole Corporate Sockpuppet style of politics is now deeply distasteful to people, whilst they respect people who tell it like it is, even if it's uncomfortable...