UK by-elections

Missy reporting from the UK:

Yesterday there were two by elections in ‘safe’ Labour seats, Stoke on Trent and Copeland.

In Stoke Labour held on, despite it being the ‘Brexit Capital’ of the UK, and some thinking that UKIP could pull it off. Thought it should be noted that Labour won with a smaller majority (5179 in 2015, 2620 in 2017), and lost approximately 2% of its share of the votes, the same number UKIP went up by. It is thought by some that Nuttal (UKIP candidate) lost ground after he was forced to apologise for an untrue claim on his website that he lost good friends at Hillsborough.

Copeland is the real talking point this morning. The Conservatives took out Copeland, a safe Labour seat, the first time a Governing party has won a by election since 1982. Labour has held Copeland since it was formed in 1983, and has lost it with an approximate 3% swing to the Conservatives.

Copeland is reliant on the Nuclear Power Plant for their economy, and many voters believed that Corbyn would not protect their jobs and livelihoods – a damning indictment on a party that is supposed to be for the workers. Labour campaigned on the NHS, but discovered that wasn’t what was important to the voters there. Some believe that unless there are some major changes Labour are heading for a catastrophic defeat in 2020.



  1. Missy

     /  February 25, 2017

    Following on from my comment this morning, this has of course been the main political story of the day, specifically the loss in Copeland.

    One small correction, the initial report I saw this morning was incorrect regarding the swing to Conservatives in Copeland, it was not 3%, but rather 6.7%.

    Jeremy Corbyn is coming under pressure to resign as leader, however, he is adamant he will not resign, however, he has also been a little quieter on his demands of only a few months ago that Theresa May must call a General Election this year, that could be something to do with the fact that on current polling many Labour MPs believe that Labour would be decimated in a General Election, and the Conservatives would increase their majority.

    Corbyn refuses to take any responsibility for the loss in Copland, and has said that their message was not enough to win in Copeland. He has made it clear in a number of interviews today that he does not believe his leadership contributed to the defeat in Copeland. The divide between Corbyn’s allies and critics is growing, and becoming more bitter. John McDonnell (Labour Shadow Chancellor & Corbyn ally) has said Labour must unite behind Corbyn, and Ken Livingstone has blamed disillusionment with the Governments of Tony Blair and Gordon Brown and called Corbyn’s critics embittered old Blairites. However, many in Labour, and one Union Leader has said it is time for Corbyn to stand down – significantly though Len Mccluskey, the leader of Unite union, has not said anything about the by election result in Copeland – an area with a high percentage of union members, and former Labour stronghold.

    Interestingly the new MP for Copeland said that one thing she kept being told during campaigning was that many people did not believe Labour spoke for them anymore, this view appears to have been seized on by Theresa May who today said that the result in Copeland shows the Conservatives are a party for all of the UK.

  2. Excellent. Thanks for info Missy . Many people were worried that Theresa May would hedge around on Brexit. Parliament represented the people faithfully, and so it appears now all they have to do is shoot some of those old globalist elites in the house of Lords.

    • Missy

       /  February 25, 2017

      Pretty much.

      I will look to do a summary of this week’s Lord’s debate round up at the weekend, but I next week is the crunch week, from what I gather the debates this week were pretty much what was expected.

  3. Missy

     /  February 25, 2017

    One thing I forgot to mention, is that even though the current Copeland seat was only formed in 1983, the area that composes the seat last had a Conservative MP in 1924.

  4. pdm

     /  February 25, 2017

    Missy are you UK based?