Daily Archives: July 24, 2009

Indonesia (President) 2009

Result of the Indonesian presidential elections held in early July have been released. Incumbent President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (SBY), a mildly reformist guy, has been overwhelmingly re-elected by the first round. He defeated two relatively high-profile candidates, his outgoing Vice President Jusuf Kalla and former President Megawati Sukarnoputri.

SBY’s coalition included his Democratic Party (PD) and several other Islamist parties of varying moderation (mostly moderates, though an important radical one too). Sukarnoputri’s coalition included her Indonesian Democratic Party (PDI-P) and Gerindra, the personal vehicle of former military commander Subianto while Kalla’s coalition included the Golkar (the party of the former dictator, Suharto) and Hanura, another personal vehicle for another former military commander, this time named Wiranto.

Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono/Boediono (PD) 60.80%
Megawati Sukarnoputri / Prabowo Subianto (PDI-P) 26.79%
Jusuf Kalla / Wiranto (Golkar) 12.41%

Indonesia 2009

Colours as per the results table, of course. I’m not very well-read on Indonesian political geography, but it does seem that SBY’s coalition with the Islamist parties helped him a lot with the traditional Muslim community strong in Java but didn’t prevent him from doing well with modern Muslims in Sumatra, Kalimantan, or Sulawesi. And, surprisingly, didn’t prevent him from doing very well with Protestants in Papua. However, Bali Hindus and, probably, the small Hindu community on Kalimantan went for Sukarnoputri.

Norwich North (UK) by-election 2009

I posted last night on a by-election in the Westminster constituency of Norwich North which was held on July 23 after the resignation of the sitting Labour MP, Ian Gibson, over the expenses scandal. Here are the results:

Chloe Smith (Conservative) 39.54% (+6.29%)
Chris Ostrowski (Labour) 18.16% (-26.70%)
April Pond (LibDems) 13.97% (-2.22%)
Glenn Tingle (UKIP) 11.83% (+9.45%)
Rupert Read (Green) 9.74% (+7.08%)
Craig Murray (Honest) 2.77%
Robert West (BNP) 2.74%
Bill Holden (Ind) 0.48% (-0.17%)
Howling Laud (Loony) 0.42%
Anne Fryatt (NOTA) 0.17%
Thomas Burridge (Libertarian) 0.10%
Peter Baggs (Ind) 0.07%
Conservative GAIN from LabourConsevative majority: 21.37%
16.49% swing from Labour to Conservative

Unexpectedly good showing from the Conservatives, who managed to increase their vote share quite significantly even though UKIP also had a phenomenal vote increase, probably aftershocks from the Euros and a good turnout from their base. Labour, on the other hand, has fared worse than I and others expected, and much below that 30% the poll gave them. Their share is down nearly 27% and they have been reduced to a mere 18.2% in a constituency which is a generally safe Labour seat. Good result for the Greens, but they must be deceived they only polled fifth and below 10%, but it positions Read well to run in Norwich South, where he’ll do much better.

If the Conservatives can manage a majority of 21% in a seat like this, they’re well on their way to a landslide mandate in the next general election. And a 16.5% swing to them endangers a number of senior Labour cabinet members.

However, this is a low turnout by-election (45%), so it’s perhaps best not to use this as a prediction model for the general election.

Election Preview: Norwich North (UK) by-election

A by-election is being held today (July 23) in the British constituency of Norwich North, located in Norfolk in the East of England. This is held to replace Ian Gibson, a Labour MP involved in the expenses scandal who was excluded from the party and forbidden to run for re-election as a Labour candidate. His position was untenable and he resigned, without running for re-election as an Independent Labourite.

Norwich North is the poorer and more blue-collar of the two Norwich constituencies, and includes little industrial pockets and social housing. It has been held by Labour since its creation in 1966, but the Conservatives won it in the 1983 Tory landslide and held it until 1997 after a close election victory in 1992. Norwich South is wealthier and more service-oriented. However, the city as a whole has a reputation to be one of the country’s ‘greenest’ cities. In fact, the Greens were the largest party in the city in the June Euro elections – though their strength is mostly concentrated in Norwich South.

The 2005 results were as follows:

Ian Gibson (Labour) 44.9%
James Tumbridge (Conservative) 33.3%
Robin Whitmore (LibDem) 16.2%
Adrian Holmes (Green) 2.7%
John Youles (UKIP) 2.4%
Bill Holden (Ind) 0.7%

The two major contenders – Labour and Tories – have both nominated candidates, who, if elected, will be the youngest MPs in the House. Labour’s candidate is Chris Ostrowski and the Tory candidate is Chloe Smith.  The LibDem candidate is their 2005 candidate in South West Norfolk and local councillor April Pond. The Greenies nominated Rupert Read, their top candidate in the East Euro constituency in June as their candidate. Read is also a local councillor – the Greens are the second party on the Norwich council. There are also UKIP, BNP and Looney candidates. A notable independent is former ambassador Craig Murray running as an anti-corruption candidate.

The Greens are not strong in the North, but more in the South (over 7% in 2004); but Labour is bleeding a lot of support to the Greens according to a poll for the by-election (change on 2005). Craig Murray was not polled, but he is an important factor. His result will be important to this race.

Conservative 34% (+1)
Labour 30% (-15)
LibDem 15% (-1)
Green 14% (+11)

UK PollingReport has some information on the poll:

Norwich’s University & College Union have commissioned an ICM poll for the forthcoming by-election in Norwich North. […]

This is the equivalent of an 8 percent swing to the Conservatives, pretty much in line with national polling at the moment, though beneath those figures the actual shift has almost all been from the Labour party over to the Greens. The sample size was only 500 (and once don’t knows, unlikely to votes and so on were taken out, the voting figures were based on only 294), so there’s a hefty margin of error, but the Conservatives start the race slightly ahead.

This is of course an early poll – the by-election campaigning has barely started and Labour haven’t even named their candidate. 18% of the people ICM contacted weren’t even aware there was a forthcoming by-election, and 24% said they didn’t know how they would vote (as usual ICM re-allocate a proportion of these people based on how they voted at the last election, without this adjustment the figures would have been CON 35%, LAB 28%).

Labour is expecting a bad night (or day, seeing as counting starts tomorrow morning), but the Conservatives falling flat (albeit allowing them to win thanks to Labour’s collapse) wouldn’t be entirely good news. A good Green result for Read would position him well to run “for real” in Norwich South in the general election, since Norwich South is probably a top Green target and one of the few places they stand a chance to win.