So Sky News got the scoop last night – the Inverclyde by-election will take place in three weeks on June 30th, as we suggested might be the case as early as last week. That date had been rumoured over the past two weeks, but had been thought too risky by many, including many Scottish Labour MPs and even some of the potential Inverclyde candidates.
However the party has opted for an early election, seemingly to avoid the people of Inverclyde going unrepresented in Westminster for too long. In the run up to the by-election, the organisation north of the border has been beefed up, with well respected London Regional Director and by-election veteran Ken Clarke heading up to Scotland to help the party over the coming year. It is also believed that the national party have had organisers in the area for the past few weeks.
Although Inverclyde is notionally a safe Labour seat, recent SNP gains in Scotland have put this very much in marginal territory. Iain McKenzie and the local party will certainly have their work cut out between now and the end of the month.