It appears the Labour Party are rapidly losing confidence in their ability to hold on to Haywood and Middleton in next week’s by election. Breitbart London understands that they are not finding the support on the doorstep they had expected, and has heard allegations that the party has both brought in two new professional campaign managers and set a three line whip, ordering their MPs to campaign in the constituency within the next week, in order to secure a win. Labour leader Ed Miliband will also visit tomorrow in an attempt to rally support for his party.
The by-election, called following the death of popular Member of Parliament Jim Dobbins, is due to take place on the 9th October. It is commonly believed that it was purposefully scheduled to force Ukip to split their relatively limited resources between the two campaigns. But a Ukip source has today told Breitbart London that Ukip are giving Labour a run for their money, saying “I’m not saying we’re definitely going to win it, but it’s looking good.”
“Labour has had to bring in two new campaign managers, and has issued a three line whip. Miliband’s here tomorrow; so far we’ve only seen Dennis Skinner wandering around looking lost. It’s clear that they’re worried.”
He said that the Conservatives had abandoned the fight altogether to concentrate instead on the Clacton race against their ex-colleague Douglas Carswell: “Just like down in Clacton you don’t see any Labour members, up here we’ve not seen any Conservatives at all. They’re invisible.”
A North West Labour spokesman denied that new campaign managers had been brought in, saying “No, it’s just the usual people here”. When asked whether a three line whip – a strong order signifying that an MP must attend – had been issued, she said “I wouldn’t know anything about that”. A short statement which was later sent to Breitbart London simply read “Labour’s fantastic candidate Liz McInnes is fighting a positive campaign – and getting a great response on the doorstep across the constituency. She’s been joined on the campaign trail by Labour activists, supporters and MPs from across the region and across the country.”
Last week the Spectator reported that Nigel Farage had written off his party’s chances, saying “I think it’s too big a mountain to climb in that short a space of time”
However, he conceded that the Labour machine was not running as smoothly as Miliband and his party’s candidate Liz McInnes would like. Farage continued “I think the Labour party [have] got a very divided local party, they’re not happy with the candidate, they can’t get anyone out to canvass, and when they put the coaches on to go from the hall in Manchester to the office in Heywood, only 23 people got on one… they were expecting hundreds.”
In the 2010 general election Labour held the seat with 40.1 percent, whilst the Conservatives came second in the constituency with 27.2 percent of the vote, an increase of over five percent on their previous result. Ukip were in fifth place on just 2.6 percent.
Fast forward to next week, and the picture is likely to be very different. It is almost certain that Labour and Ukip will take the top two spots, pushing the Conservatives into third place. What is becoming increasingly clear is that Labour insiders are fearful that Ukip will have not one, but two new MPs on the morning of October 10th, giving more credibility to their claim that they threaten all the Westminster parties equally.