2013 Hamilton South By-election

Craig Smith is the candidate for Ward 19 - Hamilton South in the South Lanarkshire Council by-election on Thursday 24th October 2013.

Local businessman Craig Smith is currently negotiating export orders in Korea.  Craig said: “During my first visit this summer I set up an exclusive agency agreement, and during my second visit I secured order commitments in excess of £1million.”  His third visit is to attend the renowned Kormarine expo in an effort to secure more business.

This is the expertise that Craig will bring to South Lanarkshire Council.

These orders do not simply benefit Craig’s own company, Hillfoot Multi Metals, but as the products are produced and manufactured in the UK a number of Scottish companies benefit, including Hamilton machining company MB Techniques.  Craig said: “I have had the privilege of being a supplier to MB for almost 20 years.  More recently I have used them more and more for my fabrication and machining requirements as they are a great company to deal with.  The local workforce have the skills and expertise that embody the people of Hamilton.”

The by-election was caused by the death of Councillor Bobby Lawson on Tuesday 13 August 2013.

Craig commented: “I learned with sadness that Bobby lost his battle with lung cancer.  Bobby and I got on well during the campaign last year.  I enjoyed his company when we spent a lot of time together on election day at the polling stations.”

Those who would like to help Craig with his campaign can contact him on:
Tel: 01698 321877
Mobile: 07765208741
To email Craig, click here

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Results Analysis

Comparing first preference votes is the fairest way to assess the different candidates in a Single Transferable Vote (STV) election.  The SCP drew attention to this some years ago and it appears that Councils are now learning to do so with their published results.  However, not all of them are producing all the information about the second, third and fourth votes in an easy format, which makes it difficult for the public to ascertain the full support for smaller parties.  There were 5 candidates.
1. Labour won the seat from the SNP by 1781 first preference votes to 1120.  Stuart Gallagher was elected at the 1st stage; so that our candidate Craig Smith did not get the opportunity of picking up second and third votes.
2. Craig Smith got 133 votes, beating UKIP which received 86 votes.  However Craig got 312 second preference votes and 185 third preference votes, which did not count.  So only 21% of our voters are giving us their 1st preference, and they have still to learn the lesson about making their vote count effectively, which is explained here.  It is possible to get a Christian elected, if Christians will act together.
3. The Lib Dems did not put up a candidate.

Results Analysis of the two Dunfermline by-elections held on the same day

1. There was a by-election for the Scottish Parliamentary constituency of Dunfermline, and at the same time a by-election in the Dunfermline South ward.  In spite of many hours trying to find a local Christian to stand in these by-elections, the SCP had no candidates in these by-elections.
2. Labour won both by-elections, making it a triple whammy against the SNP on the night.  The approaching Independence Referendum next year was thought to have an effect upon the elections.  It follows the recent Govan by-election, when for the first time in 40 years the SNP did not win a by-election in Govan ward.  This suggests that the SNP appeal is beginning to wane.
3. Although Labour won the local council by-election on first preference votes, yet there was a swing from Labour to the SNP.  UKIP and the Greens got 183 votes each.
4. In the Holyrood Parliamentary election, Labour gained it from the SNP; UKIP and the Greens lost their deposit; the Tories continued to flat line, as they have done for the past two decades, and the Lib Dems lost eight points and “remain in deep, deep electoral trouble” according to Professor John Curtice of the University of Strathclyde.
5. The SNP vote fell by 7.02%, on the back of the imprisonment of their previous candidate Bill Walker for domestic abuse.  This reflects upon the SNP candidate selection process.  In Highland Council, a former SNP councillor resigned while under investigation about his expenses.
6. The UKIP candidate boasted during the count that he would retain his deposit, for the first time in Scotland, but he was proven to be wrong, with 908 votes amounting to 4.7%.  This political immaturity in commenting prematurely on their result followed in the train of Lord Monkton who made the same confident boast at the recent Aberdeen Donside by-election.  The SCP prefers to under-promise and over-achieve.  It seems that UKIP does not operate on this principle, pointing to yet another difference between the SCP and UKIP.  When public distrust of politicians is such an important part of the public disengagement with politicians, it seems that UKIP commentators have not learned this simple lesson.
7. Craig wants to convey his thanks to everyone who helped and voted for him.  He notes that the SCP is the only party to increase its vote:
Labour 52.8% to 51.7%
SNP   33.4% to 32.5%
Cons   9.43% to 9.35%
SCP   3.14% to 3.86%
Further, UKIP stood against the SCP despite previous assurances to Craig that they would not.