Analysis comment

Forget the spin – Starmer’s going backwards in the north despite the worst government in history

Of Tory losses, Labour picked up barely a quarter – and lost out to the Tories, LibDems and Greens outside London

Keir Starmer’s rictus grin and Labour’s desperate spin this morning is trying to cast a few wins in London as success, despite predictions before the election that they should gain more than 800 council seats in last night’s elections.

But the reality is that the party went backwards outside London, losing seats to the Tories in a string of formerly die-hard Labour seats:

Labour also lost Hull to the LibDems out of the results declared so far and is currently losing ground to the Tories even in places like Swindon. Labour’s losses from the results declared so far (as of 11am) were:

Oxford -3
Exeter -2
Sandwell -3
Barnsley -3
Sunderland -1
South Tyneside -4
Newcastle -1
Tameside -2
Oldham -5
Salford -3
Sheffield -1
Wirral -3
Hull -2
Nuneaton -2
Thurrock -3

And the UK’s leading election guru Professor Sir John Curtice was absolutely clear that Labour’s claims to the contrary are spin:

Curtice went on to make clear that Labour was not on track even to be the largest party in a general election, even assuming that the protest vote in last night’s local elections doesn’t swing back to the Tories and that Tories who stayed at home on a night of drastically low turnouts don’t come out when their vote counts toward a national government.

And the most significant statistic of the night was that where the Tories did lose votes, barely more than a quarter of them have gone to Starmer’s Labour, supposedly the official opposition – only 28%, while almost three times as many went to the LibDems, Greens and other parties.

All this against the worst – and frankly murderous – government in history. Mid-term in Johnson’s government, usually the worst time for a ruling party, Starmer can’t make a meaningful dent against the party and leader that:

  • committed geriatricide against at least 20,000 of our old people in care homes
  • caused the needless Covid deaths of another couple of hundred thousand or so of the rest of us
  • crushed and shredded our NHS
  • trashed the UK economy
  • is allowing privatised energy companies to double their profits while bringing millions of families to their knees

And who should be surprised when there’s no opposition and barely a cigarette paper morally or politically between the brylcreemed barrister and his team and their Tory counterparts.

The people see through Starmer – and they ain’t buying.

Update 9 May: after all results were in, Labour gained only eleven seats in England compared to 66 in Drakeford’s Wales. Starmer did worse than the Greens, LibDems, independents and even the brand new Aspire party that only stood candidates in a single London borough.

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  1. I’ve never heard so much nonsense spoken by Yvette Cooper, as she did, on BBC, this morning. On, and on, and on… Someone shut her up, please.

    For a senior professional political journalist, Jo Coburn doesn’t seem to know a lot about what’s, actually, going on in UK politics.

    There should be an inquiry into how much she’s being paid, out of the TV Licence Fee, for her amateurism and ignorance.

    1. Nothing to disagree with your comment, Wirral. This is the plan, isn’t it, Likud?

  2. Over at the Guardian the commentariat are squealing for PR in a bid to get Starmer into Number 10 with a coalition of Greens and LibDems. Desperate stuff!

    1. Londoners sparing his the party’s blushes.

      Support that can only be explained by popular local candidates & projection on their part – some are still pretending Starmer is NOT some establishment stooge, but instead someone determined to rejoin the EU and introduce radical democratic/constitutional reform. In reality, he’s just the establishment’s plan B, for any brief interlude in the usual service of a one-party state UK, and untrammelled Tory rule.

      Starmer has already ruled out any election pacts or coalitions either “before or after the election” in an interview with the FT – he fears working with the Lib Dems or Greens could mean adopting radical policies – like abolishing the House of Lords – one of his many (10) pledge fibs. That’s why he’ll fight any moves to change the party’s position on proportional representation too.

      Progressives are wasting their time with this wretched man.

      1. The Labour vote in 2019 held up better in London than any other part of the country and generally Mr Corbyn was more popular there than anywhere else hence the centre complaining he was too London centric. . Labours decline in the north is nothing new and certainly pre dates Mr Corbyn look at a constituency I know well ,Bishop Auckland for a good example. These results reinforce what a huge issue Brexit was in 2019 as Labour have done much worse in Brexit areas than in those voting remain. The most galling thing this morning was hearing Bridget Phillipson,who in 2018 stated Labours “disastrous “ local election result showed the country had rejected Mr Corbyn, claiming these were good results because the bar was set so high in 2018

      2. Probably down to Labour’s strong activist base in London. They’re more shielded from the apathy and membership demoralisation Starmer’s rotten Sothside regime has engendered across the rest of the country.

        New Tory leader and a snap election next year (with voter ID reqs.) Labour MPs outside London should start looking for new careers.

      3. Reply to Jim
        I noted ( and was disgusted by) Phillipson’s comments too Jim- it is a matter of record that Labour achieved great success in 2018 but in true Blairite fashion she neglected to say that these great results were under to Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership.

      4. Do this bunch of craven degenerates think that we believe them when they tell us that they wouldn’t sell their children for a grasp at the levers of power. They will be able to drop the age of consent and get the NUT to teach all sorts of things to our kids. No coalition, my arse.

      5. wobbly – They’ve probably factored in that what you think is unlikely to have much impact either way.

  3. The best shout on Labour spin came from Guido – – in short, a poor performance by Corbyn is deemed a victory for Starmer. Thus far the results are not the killer blow for Johnson, show Starmer to have achieved stasis in the face of real opposition to the government and, consequently the Lib Dems and Greens are the only parties who can legitimately crow about the results. PR remains the goal but it would be to everyone’s detriment if it was pursued as the vehicle to elevate Starmer.

    1. To sum it up it looks like the labour party forgot about the rest of the country and intend to be the Londoncentric labour party…but thats never going to get the knight through the doors of downing street or the fat mps beyond watford
      continuing on the gravey train .. “.warning redundancy alert ”
      .IF I was a mp from outside the M25 home counties I would be very very worried 😟…Maybe labour can look to expand into the virgin islands it should have a better reception than the “big plan” for labour” in Ulster.maintain the partition.. ?..

  4. I have taken the time to look up all the London Boroughs among the big wins of the night with 3 local authorities previously under Tory control now under Labour’s control. It is undeniable that Labour did well in London but no everywhere is peachy for Labour:
    Labour lost 5 seats in Brent with the Conservatives winning 2 and the LibDem winning 3.
    Labour lost 8 seats in Enfield to the Tories
    Labour lost 1 seat to the Tories in Hounslow
    In Merton Labour lost 3 seats, the Tories lost 9 and the LibDems won 12.
    In Camden labour won 1 seat from the Tories but the LibDems won 3
    In Kensington and Chelsea the Tories lost 2 to the LibDems but Labour didn’t win a single seat.
    No all the London boroughs have declared yet so we will have to wait and see what are the result in other boroughs and what is the net gains for Labour in London.
    So far Labour appears to have won 35 seats but Labour gained a total of 33 seats from the 3 London boroughs that changed control from Tory to Labour. All 3 MPs representing the residents of the London Borough of Wandsworth are Labour MPs. Hence, Labour’s victory in Wandsworth was to be expected.
    Winning the next General Election in Barnet and Westminster will gave Labour 4 extra MPs. Hence, clearly it would not compensate Labour for the lost of Labour’s seats to the Tories outside London.

    1. Maria, this is hard for me to get. The council which was responsible for The Grenfell Atrocity saw Labour gain, one seat. That says everything. And the quislings and perverts try to spin the night as a success. It probably was for them and their sick vision of the future.

  5. So by Friday morning it’s pretty bad news for Starmerites. They were predicted to sweep the board or at worst make significant gains and they have not even got close no matter how hard they try to spin the lacklustre support. If turnout is significantly down that will be another nail in Starmer’s coffin. One can only hope. Other than wasting protest votes on the carpetbagging FibDems and equally two-faced Greens the electors should have written in NOTA or boycotted the ballot.

    1. Nick Boles claimed ‘the feels’ were just like 1997.

      ThInGs cAn OnLy GeT bEttER

  6. Amusing watching the guardian yesterday highlighting Tories’ Nick Boles and Dom Cummings twitter support for Labour, as if that ‘s some sort of endorsement of the party.

    The very fact that those at the core of anti-EU sentiment (Cummings) and UK conservatism(Boles) for the last 20 years find it easy and safe to switch and urge a vote for Labour, is indicative of what a pathetic waste of political space the Labour party has become.

    A Labour party worth its weight in salt would be repellent to such individuals.

    Proof if it were needed Starmer and Reeves aim is only to provide the brief interlude in Tory rule, and the veneer of democracy.

  7. Finally people are waking up to the fucking SCAB party or Party of Betrayal AKA Labour! LOL Hope fully Labour will be wiped our sooner rather than later. Fingers crossed.

  8. Labour’s apparent success in Barnet gave the BBC a golden opportunity to regurgitate the anti-semitism scam.

  9. Hope everyone has noted the results from Preston,every seat won and an endorsement of what Labour can do given the right people at the helm.

    1. And after all those denials, and insistence that “as the former DPP, I ensured we stayed within the rules at all times. Hopeully I am never in court, but if I am can Keith be the prosecuting barrister, please?”

    2. Thanks SteveH. What about Billionaires’-Pocket Gate He’s the ONLY living Briton to be a member of the Trilateral Commission. Are they investigating that, I wonder?

      1. qwertboi – If you are so concerned about it then do something constructive instead of just moaning.

    3. I fully expect a whitewash. As is customary for any UK Establishment goon caught breaking the law. Being above any and all laws, they can expect a slap on the wrist and no more.

  10. The British MSM have lived up (maybe down?) to
    expectations of a “nul point” for numeracy ..

    The most significant recent elections for comparison
    with 2022 were the local elections of 2018 and 2019.

    A comparison with GE December 2019 its NOT significant ..

    For straight comparison the Labour Party did WORSE than
    in 2018 when Corbyn was in charge. At that stage the Labour
    Party were in favour of honouring the Referendum – but with
    a “soft” policy – eg keeping Single Market etc.

    Following this there was a massive loss of Labour vote in
    May 2019 after Labour had adopted the “run the referendum
    again” which had overtaken the soft approach as in 2018
    and 2017.

    The GE of December 2019 simply replicated the
    local election results of May 2019 in the North.

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