Last Thursday there was a Local Council Election for the Yeovil Central Ward.
To some this was seen as a marker for Liberal Democrat support in the town, or more precisely an indicator of feeling against David Laws. The Labour leaflet, below, shows a picture of David Laws behind bars, rather than campaigning on local issues.
This is Somerset published this article (3rd June 2010):
“Four-way contest for vacant council seat
AN election for a vacant seat on Yeovil town council is likely to be contested by four candidates.
The poll on Thursday, July 1, for the central ward seat will be a litmus test of Yeovil voters following the Liberal Democrat-Conservative coalition, and revelations about constituency MP David Laws.
Liberal Democrat councillors said the group have submitted nomination papers for a candidate, and the Conservatives have put forward former town councillor Audrey Bartlett.
Lee Skevington, who unsuccessfully stood against David Laws for the Yeovil constituency in the General Election last month, announced he would be standing for Labour.
It is understood a candidate will also stand under the banner of the Central Committee for Political Change, a loose group who are not part of mainstream politics.
Electors called for an election following the retirement of former mayor John Cruddas in April.
Councillor Steve Hawker, chairman of the central ward Liberal Democrat group of councillors, said he would be calling on all Lib-Dem activists and even Mr Laws to help with the campaign.
The ward is a traditional Liberal Democrat stronghold.“
The report had only one comment at the bottom (8th June 2010):
“I think that the Liberal Democrats have a nerve asking David Laws to help them in Central Ward. Mr Laws has just admitted that he knowingly claimed around £40,000 of taxpayers money that he was not entitled to. Furthermore, depite having Lib Dem councillors for the past ten years, central ward remains the poorest ward in Somerset. I think that when election day comes around on 1 July, the people of central ward will want to send the LibDems a strong message that their behavior has been totally unacceptable.“
The result was a Liberal Democrat hold and I am informed a VERY good result.
I have also heard that support for David Laws was “overwhelmingly supportive”. If this was a “strong message” from the people of Yeovil on David Laws and/or the coalition as has been suggested then that message is surely ‘We STILL support you‘