Friday, 24 July 2009



Today’s by-election result in Norwich North comes exactly one year to the day that the SNP won Glasgow East with a 22.5 per cent swing from Labour in a by-election that shook Westminster, and as voters in the neighbouring Glasgow North East constituency face a six month wait to elect a new MP.

One year on, SNP by-election victor John Mason MP today (Friday) rounded on Labour for refusing voters in Glasgow North East the chance to elect a new MP until November.

Glasgow North East has been without an MP since former Speaker Michael Martin stood down on 21 June. An attempt by the SNP to move the by-election Writ on the last day before the parliamentary recess was defeated when Labour voted against an early poll. Voters in Norwich went to the polls just 48 days after their former Labour MP resigned – while voters in Glasgow are set to wait 144 days before they can elect a new MP.

Mr Mason said:

“Why should people in Glasgow be left without an MP for six months when voters in Norwich are allowed to elect a new representative within weeks?

“Labour are guilty of the most astonishing arrogance in denying people in Glasgow the chance of an MP on their side at a time when the local community faces serious challenges because of Labour's recession. Issues such as threatened job losses at Port Dundas distillery or school closures by the local Labour council.

"Labour have learnt nothing since their defeat this time last year as the recent vote on Brown's 10p tax showed. They are still taking the support of people in Glasgow for granted.

“Labour had the chance to set an early date for the election last week, but the party objected and vot
ed against giving people in Glasgow their say.

“People in Scotland know that it is the SNP who have delivered real benefits for them and their family and are helping them out in the hard times by freezing the council tax, delivering a record number of police officers, restoring free education, reducing business rates, and abolishing prescription charges.

“In contrast Labour are putting Gordon Brown’s interests before the needs of people in Glasgow and people will see that for what it is.”

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