Most of Labour’s small successes in the local elections came in left-run Wales

Small nation delivered more than Keir Starmer could manage in whole of England. But then, so did the tiny Green party

Keir Starmer’s disastrous performance outside London in yesterday’s local elections is highlighted by Labour’s strong showing in Wales.

Where Starmer lost ground to a murderous, chaotic Tory government in many non-London areas, Welsh Labour leader Mark Drakeford – a Corbyn supporter who wants to distance his party from Starmer’s command and control obsession and who has been targeted by the English Labour right for showing some principle – saw Wales, a country with a population of about a twentieth of England’s, deliver a lot more gains than either Starmer or his right-wing clone in Scotland:

Working-class communities and England’s towns continue to reject Starmer’s policy- and principle-free, control-freak excuse for political leadership that really amounts to kowtowing to the status quo. In Wales, they welcome left-wing policies and any kind of vision for actual change. They would in England, too, if only there were a Labour leader with the nous and backbone to offer it.

Update 9 May: after all results were in, Labour gained only eleven seats in England compared to 66 in Drakeford’s Wales.

SKWAWKBOX needs your help. The site is provided free of charge but depends on the support of its readers to be viable. If you’d like to help it keep revealing the news as it is and not what the Establishment wants you to hear – and can afford to without hardship – please click here to arrange a one-off or modest monthly donation via PayPal or here to set up a monthly donation via GoCardless (SKWAWKBOX will contact you to confirm the GoCardless amount). Thanks for your solidarity so SKWAWKBOX can keep doing its job.

If you wish to republish this post for non-commercial use, you are welcome to do so – see here for more.


  1. The Labour gains in Wales are an endorsement of Mark’s leadership. In England while Starmer may have picked up some votes from disaffected Tories he made no real headway because he has lost, and while he continues on his present course hasn’t a snowball’s chance in hell of regaining, votes from Socialists, anti Zionists and people who deeply resent being dictated to. On that basis Starmers Labour cannot win a General Election but as most of us know that has never been his on his agenda anyway.

  2. In London too, activists won their victories in spite of the ‘policy void’ at the top of the party, certainly not because of anything Starmer brings. The lack of vision or any coherent argument as to why they’d be an improvement over Johnson’s crew, with shadow ministers resorting to, “wait for our manifesto” is ridiculous approaching 3 years from the last election.

    Those criticising the party get called ‘Tory enablers’ on social media and lectured on how those in serious poverty NEED a Labour govt. An argument that simply doesn’t stack up, when you consider multi-millionaires’ Starmer and Reeves have in the past used the right’s language of ‘undeserving poor’, work shy’ and ‘scroungers’.

    It’s far from clear the upper middle-class careerists in the PLP would improve anything for the most downtrodden in society – for they’d see doing that as too left-wing a signal for the rich individual donors and corporate sponsors they’re trying to woo, to replace the lost union money.

    1. Andy, my educated guess is that after this poor performance in the local elections the rich donors ain’t coming. Why would they waste their money donating to Labour?
      Better to use their money to influence the Tories, get ride of Boris and elect someone more palatable to the electorate and win the next GR.
      Or perhaps Starmer would save Johnson. Despite all the Partygate saga, the Tories despite all the negative press managed to win seats in the red wall.
      Hence, if Starmer is fined all the damage done to Johnson’s image will come undone. Johnson still a lovable rogue to many rank and file Tories that will be ready to forgive him if Stamer is found out to have done the same.
      After all Johnson isn’t legally trained while Starmer is a trained barrister and former Director of Public Prosecutions Hence, my educated guess is that after this lacklustre performance, Starmer is a dead man waking. Members of the PLP aren’t going to say it publicly but, it is likely some of the PLP (including front benchers) are praying that the police will fine him for breach of the rules, so that he can be pushed out.

      1. “my educated guess is that after this poor performance in the local elections the rich donors ain’t coming. Why would they waste their money donating to Labour?”

        Absolutely correct. People generally do not donate to parties or candidates that are unlikely to win.

  3. Correction, I just chequed on the BBC and Welsh Labour has won 66 seats (no 65). In Scotland labour has won 20 seats. In England so far with Tower Hamlets and Croydon still undeclared, Labour has won 51.
    Thus, Scotland plus England =71 seats on 178 Local Authorities having elections. Wales Labour with only 22 Local Authorities having elections have won 66.
    My educated guess is that the Labour Party is likely to lose seats to Aspire in Tower Hamlets. Hence, we could see Wales Labour having won more seats that Scottish and English Labour combined.
    I wonder if the MSM will report that Mark Drakeford, following on Corbyn’s footsteps is the only part of the Labour Party that is performing well.

  4. Even the Grundian has admitted Thursdays’ elections was no great shakes for New New Labour. When the Grundian says “not a clear cut victory for Labour”, the truth is, they sucked.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: