UK Pirates Get a Good Result in Manchester By-Election
The United Kingdom Pirate Party had a good result in the recent by-election held on 15 November 2012 in the city of Manchester. The seat in Manchester Central was left vacant after the sitting Member of Parliament, Tony Lloyd of the Labour Party, resigned to become Police and Crime Commissioner for the city.
In the “first past the post” electoral system, currently in use in the UK, the safe Labour seat was won by the labour candidate Lucy Powell. However the leader for PPUK, Loz Kaye, who stood for the Pirate Party made a good showing. With 1.9% of the vote the Pirates received more votes than any other party standing for the constituency for the first time. The turnout was a record low 18.2% of the eligible voters participating at the polling booths.
The election result in the words of Loz Kaye:
“The result of the Manchester by-election is the best parliamentary result for the Pirate Party UK with 1.9% of voters voting Pirate. This is a continuation of the positive trend in our election results, but still a disappointing one at the end of a hard fought campaign.”
“I hope that it is an indication that we are taking our message out in to the areas where we live. We made the point that the internet allows businesses to employ locally and trade internationally. We have not been forceful enough in persuading voters that Labour is wrong when it comes to digital policy, the economy, civil liberties and transparency in government.”
“It is clear that we need to do more to explain to voters what we stand for and to convince them that voting Pirate is a credible option. We will continue to work hard to hold our council, MPs and any elected Police and Crime Commissioner to account here in Manchester. Most importantly of all, we will be doing whatever we can to help the seventy thousand people who chose not to cast their ballot realise that they can effect change in Manchester.”
Loz, a composer and musician, became active in the Pirate Party after becoming appalled that the music industry and the Musicians uniton were backing the Digital Economy Act. He became the leader in 2010 and is an expert on civil liberties, open society and the power of technology to transform lives.
Featured image: CC-BY by ajehals