'The major problem with Charles Kennedy is that he doesn't inspire confidence in the electorate. Even a lot of our own supporters laugh at the idea of Charles Kennedy becoming Prime Minister. If we are to convince the general public that we are the real alternative we need to present them with an alternative Prime Minister, who commands their general respect in a way Charles Kennedy does not.'Cheadle was a good win for the LDs, as they saw their vote share increase despite a lower turnout than in May, chiefly at the expense of the soft Labour vote (the Labour candidate lost his deposit - something I put down to turnout). Despite the Tories briefing that they were likely to win, the result wasn't that much different to May. Stephen Day has decided to give up, having lost the seat in 2001 and not managed to regain it in the two polls since.
And down in Barking, the BNP's anti-Muslim campaigning gets the response it deserves as the Labour candidate in Barking takes a council seat with an 800-vote majority. Now there's a cause for celebration.