David Cameron allowed cameras into the first wholly-Conservative cabinet meeting in 18 years earlier, emphasising that the full horror of the Tory manifesto is going to be implemented.

The Queen’s speech is likely to see new measures to “effectively outlaw” strike action by introducing a new vote threshold — while refusing to modernise the ballot process to make it easier for more people to take part.

“Industrial action in these essential services [health, education, fire and transport] would require the support of at least 40 per cent of all those entitled to take part in strike ballots – as well as a majority of those who actually turn out to vote

This was re-iterated by new BIS secretary Sajid Javid on the Today programme this morning. But with support from 38% of voters, Javid was unable to command this kind of support even in his own constituency. In fact, the only minister in his department that can is Jo Johnson in Orpington.

“But ahhhh!”, the Tories retort, “You can’t compare a yes/no strike ballot with a first-past-the-post contest featuring multiple candidates”.

So let’s see how the Tories fare under the supplementary vote system, which is used to elect mayors and police and crime commissioner in England — and sees votes re-allocated from the losers.

Boris Johnson has a budget of £17 billion at his disposal after securing support from just 17% of the electorate (down from 20% in 2008). Conservative Gordon Oliver was re-elected as Mayor of Torbay last week with a ‘mandate’ from 15% of the electorate.

Turnouts were so notoriously low for police commissioners that even those for North Yorkshire and Staffordshire — which both saw two-horse races — secured just 8% and, errr, 6%.

So Boris will be resigning then?

  1. No one important says:

    Rail strikes. They shouldn’t be allowed to do it. Simple. If you do it and you’re caught, you lose your job, even simpler.

    If you don’t like the job, or feel you’re being unfairly treated, then find a new job. That’s what the rest of us have to do.

    By striking, everyone that needs to get public transport to get to work is hindered, and that’s not fair. I know people think they’re being unfairly treated because they haven’t had a raise in x years, but that’s life; the private sector has suffered the same affliction too, so don’t throw all your toys out the pram and ruin things for everyone else.

  2. Seriously WOW says:

    Well, No one important

    making strikes illegal because they cause inconvenience is possibly the silliest thing I have ever seen. Just because you want to fight for rights in your job does not mean other people will be prohibited from it too.

    Do you think that management of firms give pay rises and workers right out of the goodness of their heart? Let me answer that for you….. no, they do not. They have come about through decades of struggle, hardship and demonisation (even by the Labour party.. Ironic huh?)

    Not sure what you mean about being “caught” striking since the recognised Trade Union has to give a sufficient notice period.

    Using your own logic though, people who feel they are being treated unfairly on the train can surely catch a bus or drive???? one rule for one huh?

  3. Public transport? It’s all been privatised. It’s already in the private sector. Are you suggesting we should follow Nazi Germany and remove the right to strike.

  4. Good grief no one important instead of moaning about having to change your job like the rest of us perhaps you should grow some and fight back and make a stand for better pay and conditions for our future and our I D’s future selfish prick

  5. Labour liked this rule when it sneaked it into the 1979 Referendum. Had to have 40% of the electorate say YES, not 40% of turnout. This didn’t apply to NO and effectively meant dead people voted NO along with those who couldn’t be bothered voting. Undemocratic? Definitely! This is also undemocratic and unions must be strengthened, not weakened. For too long workers have been unprotected in new industries, now they’re attacking the older ones.

  6. This is a disgraceful piece of legislation. The fire service in particular has been trashed by the Tories.- they increased the retirement age, shafted them on the pay deal, closed stations, privatised the fire engines – and now want to take away the most fundamental right of all, to strike. They really do want to take the country back to the Victorian workhouse. And as for you, “No one important” – it is precisely because of selfish cowards like you the Tories think they can get away with legislation such as this. Well the people with backbone in this country won’t stand for it. The country will be in flames this summer.

  7. To go back to the original article re: Boris’s mandate and the union mandates. When Boris spends money, it benefits London. When the RMT strike, it causes mayhem, especially for people who need to get to work to earn pay, which is often far less than the people who work for TfL. Other rail companies pay decent salaries and the current threat of strike is all about testing the new government. People who have commented about the unions needing more power obviously don’t remember the 70s when the unions held the country to ransom ie rubbish piling up in the streets and bodies left unburied! Unions are a good thing, but went too far and had to be reigned in. Yes, people need a living wage, but shouldn’t cause massive problems for everyone else. When I haven’t been happy with my job, I have left and got another one! The Conservatives were voted in with a majority, therefore, most people trust them with the economy and the way they run the country. One last thing, UKIP (who I don’t have a lot of time for) gained one seat with almost 4 million votes and the SNP with nearly 5 million have 56. Swings and roundabouts whether the left or right gain from the system we have in place in this country.

  8. Call Me Dave says:

    I would agree largely with Jean Taggart except she gets one vital point completely wrong.

    The Conservatives were not voted in on a majority they only got 37% of the votes cast.
    Only reason they are in power with more seats than all the others is the failed electoral system of First Past The Post. A system which does not lend itself to democracy.

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