Voters can recall an MP in the event of a conviction (as happened in Peterborough in June 2019 and Brecon & Radnorshire in August 2019). I expect such a recall petition would be quite likely in Leicester East, and would trigger a v interesting contest 1/?
Webbe's 2019 selection for Leicester East, to replace long serving MP Keith Vaz, one of the first BAME MPs elected in 1987, was very contentious. Half a dozen Indian origin Labour councillors attacked Corbyn, accusing him of a policy of excluding Hindu candidates
The swing against Labour in Leicester East was by far the largest against the party in an ethnically diverse seat, the most plausible explanation being large numbers of Indian origin voters swinging away from the party as Webbe replaced Vaz.
Given the highly contentious selection process, and highly unusual swing against Labour next time, both the selection process and the election itself will be very interesting to watch if we get a by-election
This case, and many other interesting aspects of selections for 2019 and the mix of MPs returned, in the Political Recruitment chapter of the forthcoming "British General Election of 2019", written by @chrisbutlerpol @ProfRosieCamp @J_A_Hudson…

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More from @robfordmancs

12 Oct
Agree with this - the case for autumn lockdown from past evidence here and elsewhere was overwhelming, and the grim inevitability of disaster was obvious to anyone who understood exponential growth. Yet they delayed, and delayed, and delayed.
I vividly remember a growing feeling of nausea watching all the utter nonsense about "saving Christmas" being put about in the Conservative press (who are also culpable here), eagerly embraced by ministers including the PM. They can't pretend now the risks were not obvious then.
*Particularly* important on this front is what we learned soon after, but many in govt must have known in early autumn - namely that effective vaccines were at most a few months away from delivery. To not lock down given that knowledge was a lethal blunder of major proportions.
Read 4 tweets
11 Oct
There is more I want to say on this topic when I have time (a theme I will return to shortly) but I want to say that I *profoundly* disagree with this kind of "unless you're shouting about it on Twitter, you condone it" argument, which is both illiberal and counterproductive
Firstly, it is patently absurd to claim that you are a proponent of academic freedom while also saying "unless you loudly support this behaviour/campaign/opinion/judgement, you are the enemy". The whole *point* of academic freedom is freedom to *disagree*.
Secondly, there are a whole host of legitimate reasons why academics, with or without "public profiles" might want to refrain from engaging in a particular controversy. Matt, typically, treats the situation as a simplistic black & white morality play. It usually is not.
Read 10 tweets
11 Oct
I don't think I ever argued threats to academic freedom were non-existent. What I in fact argued, which is very different, is that many of those campaigning for academic freedom did so on the basis of evidence which did not stand up to scrutiny.
I did this very specifically, on a case by case basis, using evidence sources that individuals such as @goodwinmj and Eric Kaufmann (who I can't include in this discussion of freedom of academics to disagree on Twitter because he blocked me for disagreeing with him)
@GoodwinMJ Here is one thread where I did that. Readers can judge for themselves whether Matthew's description of my position is fair:

Read 10 tweets
10 Oct
This is also true in Britain - education (and age) polarisation seen now is genuinely new and different. One thing I would add - education polarisation also matters far more because of demographic change. The graduate class has grown drastically in the last 30 years
A generation ago, graduates were still over-represented in politics, but they couldn't bend political discussion towards the issues that exercised them most because doing so would be electorally nonsensical in a country where 85-90% of voters were non-graduates
Now, with the share of graduates approaching 40% (and higher still in younger cohorts, in the Labour electoral coalition etc) graduates have a lot more electoral heft - but not enough heft to win.
Read 13 tweets
5 Oct
Could the outcome of a second Scottish independence referendum depend on the question put on the ballot paper? M'learned colleagues @robjohns75 John Garry and I ran an experiment to find out. You can read about it here...…
@robjohns75 We randomly assigned a representative sample of Scottish respondents to one of three questions:
1. "Do you agree that Scotland should be an independent country? Yes/No (this was the SNP's preferred question in 2014, but was shot down by the Electoral Commission)
@robjohns75 2. "Should Scotland be an independent country?" (Yes/No) (this was the question asked in 2014)
3. Should Scotland remain in the United Kingdom or leave the United Kingdom (Remain/Leave) - this adapts the EU referendum question formula to the issue of Scottish independence
Read 9 tweets
29 Sep
This is the sectoral cost of grade inflation - over-recruitment at the top, under-recruitment at the bottom. Both hurt student experience. A grades based offer system cannot function if the grades are not consistent or reliable. Risk is we get a new phase of trouble next year 1/2
If Russell Group unis put up tarriffs sharply after 2 years of over-recruitment (likely) and grade distribution returns to something like pre-pandemic "normal" (plausible), then we will have sharp reduction in places given at RG, but also less capacity at lower tariff unis
Who, like Goldsmiths today, may have begun cutting back courses, staff, places etc. So we will go from feast to famine, and finishing A-level students will find that the options available to them are dramatically different to those available 1-2 years earlier.
Read 4 tweets

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