Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/210/8548
Advance For Socialist Candidates
THE GENERAL election saw good increases for Socialist candidates. The total Socialist Party vote in England and Wales (whether standing as Socialist Alliance or Socialist Alternative) was 10,363 - an average of just over 740 per candidate.
This is more than double the average vote our candidates received in the 1997 general election, when the average vote per candidate was 369.
Socialist Party councillor Dave Nellist received the highest vote of any socialist candidate in Britain with 2,638 votes.
In Walthamstow and Hayes and Harlington, Socialist Alternative candidates Simon Donovan and Wally Kennedy received 806 votes and 645 respectively.
This was a remarkable achievement, despite being denied the Socialist Alliance nomination by the Socialist Workers' Party.
In total, the Socialist Alliance in England and Wales received 57,533 votes - an average of 587 across the 98 seats it stood in.
Similarly, the Scottish Socialist Party (SSP) doubled its average vote. In 1997 it achieved an average of 466 votes per candidate. The SSP got 72,518 votes. Its average was 1,007 in the 72 seats it stood in - representing 3.1% of the total votes cast in Scotland.
Seven members of the International Socialists (the Scottish section of the Committee for a Workers' International [CWI]) stood as candidates gaining 6,553 of those 72,000 votes.
Arthur Scargill's Socialist Labour Party (SLP), however, paid the price for its refusal to enter an electoral alliance and saw its vote drop. The SLP vote of 57,075 represented an average of just over 487, compared to its average vote of 793 in 1997.
Overall, across Britain the combined Left vote of Socialist Alternative, Socialist Alliance, SSP and SLP came to 188,814. This was achieved in just over 200 seats.
If that average had been maintained while standing in all 659 seats it would have ensured the Socialists secured 2.6% of the vote across Britain. This compares to about 72,000 votes from about 100 candidates in 1997.
In The Socialist 15 June 2001: