Someone from Johor told me last night that BN is almost certain to field an Umno candidate for the Tanjung Piai by-election.
The guy who is well connected to the Johor Umno establishment said the leading candidate is Tanjung Piai Umno division chief Jefridin Atan.
I'm not sure where he got his information from but he also claimed that the matter had already been decided by the Umno leadership.
I had stated my preference here,
But if Umno people insist on contesting the seat, then that's up to them.
Actually, I don't blame them.
After all, despite the constituency used to be an MCA stronghold, its Malay majority there stood at 57 per cent.
It's about the same as Cameron Highlands which BN won a few months ago after MIC gave way to a BN's Orang Asli candidate.
I don't think Pakatan can even accuse BN of playing the racial card on this one.
Tanjung Piai parliamentary constituency was set up as part of the re-delineation process in 2003, just before the 2004 general election.
It was originally a DAP versus MCA venue.
However, it was DAP which fielded a Malay candidate first in 2008 and then in 2013, hoping to sway the Malay majority there to vote for them. It didn't work.
In the last general election, Pakatan fielded a Pribumi Bersatu candidate there, a Malay from a Malay-based party against BN's MCA candidate.
They won. As I argued in my previous post, it's the Malays who gave the Pakatan candidate his victory.
Now it looks like BN may respond to that by fielding an Umno candidate this time.
I think even MCA understand this move was necessary.
Well, I 'm still hoping for an MCA candidate to be fielded there for reasons which I stated in my previous post, but if Umno insist on fielding theirs, then so be it.
If BN wins, then Umno will increase their parliament seats by one,.....but that's about it.
However if the Umno candidate lose, even though the risk is not much, it will be a big blow to BN and its allies.
Well, bear in mind that MCA's Wee Jeck Seng won over 30 per cent of the Chinese votes there last year, which is a lot considering the circumstances at that time. I don't think the Umno candidate will get that for BN this time.
So, BN need to make sure that at least 80 per cent of the Malays who made up the 57 per cent voters in Tanjung Piai are on their side.
Achievable under the present political climate, but the risk is still there.
See lah how it turns out.