Huge MSM misrepresentation can’t hide scale of Tories’ biggest local election loss this century

Media including BBC still framing ‘bad day for Labour and Cons’ – but Tories have had worst day in over twenty years

The scale of the Tories’ disaster in yesterday’s local election vote is vast – so vast that not even the efforts of virtually the whole ‘mainstream media’ estate can mask it.

But that hasn’t stopped them trying.

The Tories have lost, as of the last count, 1,306 councillors, and with twenty councils yet to declare – yet the media persist in summarising the day as a ‘bad one for both main parties’. Labour have lost just 77 seats.

The Tories even appear to have lost Guildford in their Surrey homeland – a result described as ‘seismic’ – along with places like Bournemouth and Trafford that they have been used to considering their property.

The BBC and others have attempted to mask the scale of the disaster by portraying the results as a ‘bad day for both parties’ and with headlines depicting voters punishing ‘both main parties’ (a popular phrase today) for ‘their’ inability to deliver Brexit – as if the chaos were not a result of Tory division and incompetence.

The BBC’s current results-page headline

The BBC’s graphic showing an overview of results – like those used by other media outlets – is colour-coded in such a way that, while the maps don’t look the same, the more than ten to one ratio of severity is not immediately obvious:

Anyone not reading, listening or watching further could be excused for thinking Labour and the Tories had suffered if not similar, then certainly comparable, results.

The BBC’s results page.

But even misleading ‘framing’ can’t disguise the scale of the Tories’ catastrophe. Sooner or the actual results appear:

Worst this century – and then some

In fact, the Tories’ losses – which have risen relentlessly while Labour’s have fluctuated around the same number all afternoon – are not only their worst of the century so far, but their worst in twenty-four years: in 1995 they lost around two thousand councillors.

Failed expectation-management

The Tories, with the help of the media, had been expending huge efforts to mitigate their anticipated failure by forecasting the worst they could think of, so that anything else could be claimed as a relative success.

They failed. Their ‘worst case’ – the unthinkable number they portrayed as disastrous was one thousand, while ‘only’ five or six hundred would be relative success. A loss of 1,306 and counting was beyond their most terrible fears.

At the same time, the media claimed anything less than hundreds of gains would be failure for Labour – but in reality, with the Brexit situation as volatile as it is and Labour attempting to fight for both leavers and remainers, such talk was nonsense.

This is not a new tactic – last year’s local election results saw no less Establishment dishonesty. But while Labour’s loss of around eighty councillors is certainly a disappointment, in fact the party has seen significant swings in its favour and away from the Tories. As the party of next government, it will win back many of last night’s lost votes in a general election scenario.

But the true story of today is the one the ‘MSM’ are attempting to minimise: the Tories collapsed in a way even their most fearful mouthpiece did not dare to contemplate – and for all the efforts of the media, it can’t be hidden.

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  1. It doesn’t matter what msm says, let them keep lying! I’m delighted the neoliberal vote is split (until the Tories elect a new leader). In areas like the home counties and shires, where Labour never gets a look in, the vote is split between the Tories and Liberals, both of whom support eternal austerity. Labour has been given a great gift if they keep their nerve.

  2. BBC News 24 going with “The two main parties lose hundreds of seats”, and despite the fact that by 8.00pm the Tories had lost over 1,300 seats, the presenter – AFTER stating the above – referred to “over 1,100 seats”. And at 6.30pm they somehow managed to show a report from Newcastle instead of Chelmsford, which the presenter apologised for afterwards, but gave no explanation of course. It’s all so incredibly blatant, but they don’t give a damn!

    1. …and don’t you love the fake opposition of good/bad results and expected/not expected! So the Tory failures are irrelevant because they were ‘expected’ while Labour’s are disastrous because they were ‘not expected’. This line was pushed all day by the BBC – particularly by Madame Kuenssberg.

      1. I agree entirely and am sick to death of BBC bias which they don’t even try to disguise any more. Time for a review of the BBC charter I think!

  3. Tories loose over thirteen HUNDRED councillors and according to the BULLSHIT BROADCASTING CORPORATION, its in the same league as Labour loosing 75 , ffs it’s almost Donald Trumpian in the scale of bullshit spin.
    Soooooo glad I no longer pay a penny to that shitehouse of a Corp.

    1. Yes, and needless to say, if it had been the other way round, they would have been leading with THAT story, and NOT saying – as they have done repeatedly – that “the two main parties have lost hundreds of seats”. And in an article on their website regarding how the press are reporting the results, they say the following re The Guardian – who went with the front-page headline ‘Tory election losses are party’s worst in 24 years’ – that: :

      ‘Unsurprisingly, the Guardian focuses on the Conservatives’ huge losses, which it says are the party’s worst for almost a quarter of a century’

      But of course they are hardly going to say that just about all the rest of the MSM are reporting the results as if they – the Labour and Tory results – equate to the same thing!.

    2. How is it that “…the two main parties have lost hundreds of seats”, when on present showings the Tories have lost over 1,300 seats and Labour just 75. It does not take a genius to realise that the number 75 is less than 100, whilst 1,300 is totally in another league.

      What a blatant insult to the intelligence of the electorate. Clearly the msm believe that Joe/Jo Public reads only the headlines and does not pause to reflect on the actual facts.

  4. Early on in the day the fake news BBC were saying Lab had lost over 100 councillors.

    Then it became 80 councillors.

    Now it’s “some” councillors.

    BBC – making it up as they go along!!

  5. The MSM spin is hilarious! Totally desperate. It just shows how scared they are of a GE, which is coming anyway, whether they like it or not…

  6. Nobody can pretend these are good results for Labour,but I too have been amazed by the BBC framing. I wonder if their sports correspondent would report a 21-0 defeat for Manchester United and a 1-0 defeat for Manchester City as “humiliating thrashing for both Manchester clubs.”

    1. Well according to the Bullshit Broadcasting Corp we’ve already won the 2019 Rugby world cup 746 trys to 1

    2. And once again it’s worth reminding people that Margaret Hodge’s daughter, Lizzi Watson, is deputy editor on the BBC 6 and 10pm TV News, so the framing isn’t all that surprising!

  7. The displacement activity of seeing the BBC reporting as the major problem is really worrying.

    The fact is that this was a really poor result for Labour, given the disintegration of the Tory vote, and the normal expectation of an increase in seats at this stage.

    Nothing changes that fact – or the longer term 10% decline in vote share since the election is other than seriously bad news. On top of that bald fact, he Party can’t afford this noticeable slippage to the LibDems and Greens.

    ‘Asleep at the wheel’ comes to mind.

  8. What I don’t understand is why so many of you are still using the BBC…

    You’ll miss TV for about a fortnight at most.

    And the satisfaction from telling them why you don’t want it is hard to top.

  9. Yes full result Tories 1334 losses and Labour 82 so Tory loss of Councillors 16
    times worse than Labour!

    1. Errr …. 1334 Tory losses. Given Labour’s 82 losses : how many Tory votes switched to Labour at a time when gains would normally be expected?

      That’s the problem, Bazza.

      Like sliced bread, I’m all in favour of cheerfulness – but Mary Poppins isn’t a great political model.

  10. I believe the GE contest will still be between Lab and Con.
    What I take from this result is that we did 16 times better than the Tories.
    Barring accidents I don’t believe the outliers have any realistic prospect of forming a government but they may still affect a GE result – if the protest vote is split between three small parties it suggests fewer of them will be elected.
    That could make the push for PR hard to resist.
    I also think EU results, if UK participates, may influence GE votes more than the local results, but we’ll see.

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