Saturday, 7 May 2016

The 2016 Local Elections and Jeremy Corbyn.

If you'd been reading the papers over the last week (and I have) you would have got a very clear narrative from The Telegraph and The Mail; Labour under Jeremy Corbyn suffered a collapse in votes and lost the elections.

That would then be followed by a leadership challenge and the inevitable victory of a "moderate".

The Telegraph even produced an "expert" who told us that labour would lose 'at least' 150 seats.

It was so believable that even after the results were coming in two Labour M.P.'s and a rather embittered Labour councillor from Plymouth still issued press releases to that effect.

I thought I'd do a quick analysis of the results for myself.

Labour won 1289 councillors while the Tories only got 753.

In councils the balance was 57 Labour to 34 Tory.

It's quite true that Labour lost 18 seats - the Tories lost 47.

According to the BBC estimate of share of vote, Labour won 31% to the Tories 30%.

In London (5.5 million registered voters - more than Scotlands entire population) Sadiq Khan won 44% of first preferences to the Tories 35%.

Bye bye Boris;

If second preferences are taken into account then Khan won  56% approval from Londoners which is more than Boris Johnson got (53%) and was only less than Ken Livingstone's vote when he stood as an independent.

In terms of constituencies, Labour won outright; 12 seats to the Tories 8.

In fact, Labour won all the Mayor's, although Bristol's result still isn't in yet.

Labour's losses were in Scotland and Wales although you wouldn't have realised that Labour actually won Wales, yet again.

In Scotland, Labour continues to suffer from the legacy of the old right wing Labour establishment, of people like Gordon Brown and Alastair Darling, whose local colleagues lived the high life on expenses while doing nothing for the people of Scotland for many years. It will take a while to repair that damage.

Then again, all the headlines suggested that the Scottish Nationalists had won fact they lost 6 seats and their majority.

In Wales the LibDem leader felt the need to resign after losing 4 out of 5 of the parties seats. I never heard anything about that.

So, funnily enough, there won't be a moderate 'leadership challenge' to Jeremy Corbyn.

Or at least not just yet.

Neil Harris
(a don't stop till yo0u drop production)
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