‘You’re to blame for low turn-out’: Labour’s Tony Lloyd attacks Cameron after winning police commissioner vote

By John Paul Shammas & Robbie Gill

Newly-elected Greater Manchester Police and Crime Commissioner Tony Lloyd launched a ruthless attack against Prime Minister David Cameron, just minutes after claiming the historic position for Labour.

The government issued a statement blaming the media for not sufficiently promoting or covering the Police and Crime Commissioner elections earlier today, which they believe resulted in the dismal 13.94% turnout.

But Lloyd, who won today 51% of the vote in Greater Manchester lambasted the government’s excuses.

He told MM: “I am astonished that David Cameron is blaming the low turnout on the media. The real blame lies with the government.

“This has been the most spectacular show of incompetence. It has showcased how not to run an election. David Cameron and his ministers should be hanging their heads in shame.

“To hold it in November, in a electoral system that is bewildering for most people, with the creation of a post that they failed to explain to the public – all of this has been a recipe for the low turnout.

“Mr Cameron, don’t blame the media. Look in the mirror.”

Lloyd scored an emphatic victory over his fellow candidates after taking 51.23% of the vote and will be working with his constable Sir Peter Fahy as they seek to tackle crime across Greater Manchester together.

Meanwhile, the only independent candidate Roy Warren took 9.8%, with Conservative candidate Michael Winstanley receiving 15.61%, Liberal Democrat Matt Gallagher taking 14.81% and finally UKIP’s Michael Woolf took 8.85% of the vote.

To compete in the Police Commissioner elections, Lloyd had to step down from his constituency of Manchester Central, prompting a by-election that was won by Labour’s Lucy Powell late last night.

And Lloyd is wishing her all the best: “I’m delighted, Lucy will be a great MP. Manchester Central is a great consistency to represent, it’s been a great honour for me to serve there.”

Mrs Powell didn’t just win, she demolished her competition, gaining a 17% swing on Labour’s closest competitor, the Liberal Democrat’s Marc Ramsbottom.

Mr Lloyd said: “Everybody knows that Nick Clegg has made the Liberal Democrat’s impossible sell. The public do not trust them anymore and actually it is bad for politics in a city like Manchester because we need better opposition than we’ve had.

“Politics thrives on the cut and thrust of debate and it’s not good for people in Manchester to not have that debate.”

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