“We earned them votes tonight”, said Emma Lewell-Buck. The House of Commons has gained a social worker who can’t speak English. The auto-didacts of the early Labour movement would have been horrified. I am aware that the readers of this blog are among those who believe an inability to communicate in standard English is a mark of authenticity; I fear my view is that it has been a hundred years since the state education system in this country was so patchy that there is any reason beyond sloth for inability to follow the most basic of grammar.
But she spoke truth in one sense. They did indeed “earn them votes”. Producing fraudulent postal ballots by the thousands is very hard work, and the Labour Party in the North of England should perhaps be congratulated in bringing back aspects of manufacturing heritage in this regard.
*This was the first parliamentary constituency election in British history in which the postal ballots outnumbered the polling station votes. UKIP beat New Labour in the polling booth ballot boxes by a very clear majority, according to my mole in the count.