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Imagine – just for a moment.  A Democratic member of the US Congress resigns due to health reasons.  Four weeks later, the election to replace the retiring member of Congress in this solidly Democratic district is held.  Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid cleared their calendars to be on hand to bask in the glory of retaining the seat.  John Boehner is cautiously optimistic that his team can pick off another sure-fire Democratic winner.  

The polls close and the counting begins.  The Democratic candidate garners 25% of the vote.  The Republican gets 8.4%.  The “Ron Paul” Libertarian gets 4.6%.  And the winner with 55.9% of the vote is the Green candidate.

Okay – stop imagining.  Democrats/liberals have no intention of abandoning their neo-liberal, war-mongering, and occasionally minority supporting party in favor of an anti-war, socialist party candidate.  In fact, hippie punching is as much a sport for Democrats as it is Republicans.  

But something like that did happen in the English speaking world yesterday.  

As Taraq Ali tells us:

George Galloway’s stunning electoral triumph in the Bradford by-election on Thursday 29th March has shaken the petrified world of English politics. It was unexpected and for that reason the Respect campaign was treated by much of the media (Helen Pidd of The Guardian an honorable exception) as a loony fringe show. The BBC toady, a shamelessly partisan compeer on a local TV election show, who tried to mock and insult Galloway should be made to eat his excremental words.
Particularly amusing is the whining:
The Lib-Dems and Tories explaining their decline by the fact that too many people voted!
 Ali is brief enough in his comments that it's worth clicking through to read the whole thing..  

This isn't George Galloway's first election to Parliament.  Or even first election as a member of the Respect Party after being ousted from Blair's new Labour Party.  (Respect stands for: Respect, Equality, Socialism, Peace, Environmentalism, Community and Trade Unionism.  A political party platform that I could get behind.)  Nor is Mr. Galloway a stranger to controversy.  

Business and government establishments on both sides of the pond don't much like him.  So much so that they have been known to lie about him – unless one prefers a more genteel word than lie to explain by the Daily Telegraph and Christian Science Monitor have been forced to pay Mr. Galloway substantial sums of money.

There's so much deliciousness in Galloway's win that it's difficult to choose just one.  But one does pop out.  He left Parliament before the House of Murdoch began to fall, but not before he initiated a suit against News of the World in September 2010. As reported by BBC

... when he first launched his legal action, the News of the World said it had "absolutely no knowledge or evidence that Mr Galloway's voicemail was accessed".
News Group Newspaperssettled with Galloway for $40,000 plus costs earlier this year.  Could his election spell more bad news for Murdoch?  

He will be another thorn in the side for the bomb-bomb-bomb Iran crowd.  Let's hope a bigger thorn than he was to the Bush/Blair plot to destroy Iraq.

Congratulations MP George Galloway

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