Left vote split

  • Brian Taylor
  • 3 May 07, 11:56 PM

Tommy Sheridan has forecast that the Left vote will split between his Solidarity and his former party, the Scottish Socialists.

He says there may not be room for both, given a turnout of around 60%.

Mr sheridan says he had hoped for a higher turnout.

In Glasgow, Tommy Sheridan and his former colleague Rosie Kane are head to head on the list.

Beating the forecasts?

  • Brian Taylor
  • 3 May 07, 11:51 PM

The chat in advance was that the authorities were being deliberately pessimistic about declaration times under the new counting system.

Gossip now is that they could beat those forecasts by around an hour.

Motherwell and Wishaw expected very shortly.

First declaration?

  • Brian Taylor
  • 3 May 07, 11:46 PM

Looks like Motherwell and Wishaw may be the first to declare.

That is the seat currently held by one McConnell, J.

Wonder if he'll also be first in the race to govern Scotland?

New horizons

  • Betsan Powys
  • 3 May 07, 11:40 PM

Let's just say that I may have to start mugging up on the Lib Dem candidate in Newport East as well as the Conservative in Newport West. Just in case... We don't want a Brian Hancock moment a la Islwyn in 1999, after all.

News is the turnout is low. And if that's true in both first and second votes, could Mr M German be starting to feel nervous?

And if the Labour turnout is truly, truly low in both Newport constituencies, could Labour really lose its Mr Nice Guy + captain of the Assembly Football team and the Chair of Culture in the last Assembly?

Alyn and Deeside might be so fed up of holding the title of "lowest turnout in Assembly elections" (24%) that it looks like 38% of voters have turned out.

Lamenting insider insight

  • Brian Taylor
  • 3 May 07, 11:39 PM

Just spotted a face in the crowd at the Aberdeen count.

Derek Barrie of the Scottish LibDems.

Derek may not be familiar to all of you - but he's an astute analyst of electoral politics.

In fact, I've relied on him - and others like him in other parties - for insider intelligence on what's happening at counts.

He and the others will struggle now, given that it's machines rather than people counting the papers.

It's hard to peep over a machine's shoulder!

Pity. I'll miss that insight.

Salmond 'confident' of isles vote

  • Brian Taylor
  • 3 May 07, 11:21 PM

We won't know until tomorrow - but Alex Salmond is saying he is "extremely confident" of winning the Western Isles from Labour.

Mr Salmond deployed a helicopter to fly round key marginal seats. But helicopter problems have delayed the count in the Western Isles until tomorrow.

Turnout up - helicopter down

  • Brian Taylor
  • 3 May 07, 11:09 PM

The polls have closed - and amid the miasma of uncertainty, one fact.

A helicopter has had problems collecting ballot boxes from Barra, meaning that the count in the Western Isles will be delayed.

That is of course a key contest between Labour and the SNP - plus its contribution to the regional list count.

Other gossip? Turnout looks to be up - perhaps well up - on 2003.

Bright sunshine and a fascinating contest seem to have drawn the voters out. There was talk of queues in urban seats.

Turnout could be around 60 per cent, perhaps even higher.

Early talk? Labour strategists insist their core vote in working class areas and among pensioners is pretty solid. But they’re fretting a bit more about "aspirational" areas.

A rumour

  • Betsan Powys
  • 3 May 07, 10:41 PM

News - no, a rumour - from Ynys Mon. Turnout isn't as high as Plaid Cymru had hoped. If true, not good news for Plaid, or should I say, for their leader. Our poll for tonight's programme has come up with a figure of 58% for turnout. Scarcely believe...

The title music has struck up. I'd better concentrate on the job in hand.

Writing on the wall

  • Betsan Powys
  • 3 May 07, 10:29 PM

Just popped up to the Radio Wales studio and scribbled on a piece of paper was this:


Conservative candidate Glyn Davies' prediction. Ah, but which way round are the 14/13 Glyn?

In the name of party morale I said one thing (he whispered) but I think it'll be the other way round (he whispered v v quietly).

And we're off

  • Betsan Powys
  • 3 May 07, 10:04 PM

Let's kick off with rumours doing the rounds that no-one has checked out. What other night of the year do we get to do that?

The Tories are looking good, very good in Newport West. So good we're all checking out Matthew Evans' profile rather more carefully than we had until now. He used to run a catering business... well there you go. May come in handy later.

Plaid are confident in Carmarthen West, more so there than in Llanelli, though that's not looking bad for them. Aberconwy? Is it me or are they sounding less confident than they were? Tory march?

Nothing from the Lib Dems yet. They've probably just given up leafletting...

And Labour? Rhodri Morgan last seen standing outside Tesco in Whitchurch I hear, doing everything he can to push his people to the polls.

Has he done it? Early, early rumours suggest turnout in Labour wards in the Gower, in the Vale of Glamorgan are very low. Even the Secretary of State, Peter Hain, is starting to sound a bit nervous (when no-one's listening) - or so I'm told.

Stick with us.

No comment

  • Brian Taylor
  • 3 May 07, 06:21 AM

And he’s back. But only for now. It’s election day – and I’m in purdah. (Small seaside town in the East Neuk of Fife, rather nice actually.)

Means I can’t blog for real. No comment, no analysis, not even any cheap gags.

However, I will be up all night – and all of the day. (Wasn’t that a hit song – or am I losing it? Answer on one side of the paper only.)

During that overnight vigil, I’ll be blogging constantly. Watch out for that.

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