In calling a strike based on a such a small proportion of those entitled to vote, Mark Serwotka of the Public and Commercial Services (PCS) union has well and truly shot himself and his union in the foot.
Mr Serwotka should realise that the days of “beer and sandwiches at Number 10” for union bosses ended when he was aged 16 and studying for his “O” levels in 1979.
Mark Serwotka should realise that his union’s man, Mr Ed Miliband who has gone of record as stating, “People should not be disrupting the Olympic Games…” is unlikely to be Prime Minister until 2015 – and that is far from certain. Until then Mark Serwotka should realise that we have a Tory in Downing Street, and notwithstanding his Lib-Dem partners, Tory backbenchers will be braying for Mark Serwotka’s blood. This of course will materialise in legislation that the Tories are already talking about: to require a minimum threshold (of the total of persons entitled to vote) for strike ballots. Figures suggested are from 40 to 50%.
This of course will be a controversial piece of legislation and one that will be a piece of blue cheese for Cameron’s Tory back benchers. The influence of the Lib-Dems will probably be to try and restrict it to certain groups of public sector workers and to peg it at a lower rather than higher figure.
Mark Serwotka should realise that by calling a strike to sabotage the Olympics when the turnout was 20% is playing straight into the hands of those Tory back benchers.