Will UNITE think that Ed Miliband owes it something?

Will UNITE think that Ed Miliband owes it something?

First preferences Abbott Balls Burnham DaveM EdM
UNITE 11129 6995 7993 21778 47439
GMB 3213 2548 3119 9746 18128
UNISON 2910 2141 2343 6665 9652
Other 21 bodies 8686 9934 4449 20000 12366
Total affiliates 25938 21618 17904 58189 87585
Overall split 12.28% 10.23% 8.48% 27.55% 41.46%
UNITE SPLIT 11.67% 7.34% 8.38% 22.84% 49.76%

Should one union be so influential?

As everybody knows it was the heavy voting for Ed Miliband in the “associates” third of Labour’s electoral college that won the leadership for Ed Miliband.

But a close look at the detailed results shows that it was the three unions that endorsed him, particularly UNITE, which made all the difference. For of all the first preferences that were cast for the new leader in this section well over half were by members of the latter.

The voting pattern amongst the non-EdM backing organisations was broadly in line with other parts of Labour’s electorate. It was UNITE, the GMB and UNISON that did it.

They were helped enormously by the fact that turnout in this segment was very low and the general theory of low turnout elections is that the best organised campaigns prosper – and so it was.

For according to the FT’s Jim Packard the unions behind Ed “got round” a Labour ban on unions sending promotional material in the ballot paper package by using two envelopes.

The outer one had leaflets supporting the younger Miliband – the inner one the ballot papers. The result can be seen above.

Mike Smithson

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