Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

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EnterpriseSovereign
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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

Post by EnterpriseSovereign »

And it took 20 years and its portrayal in Mr Bates vs The Post Office for MPs to get off their asses.
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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

Post by Crazedwraith »

And to fix it and get good headlines they're... giving themselves to overrule the judiciary. Which is a fun precedent for them to have.
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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

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The Beeb
Labour is ditching its policy of spending £28bn a year on its green investment plan in a major U-turn.

An official announcement will be made on Thursday.

Sources insist the party's Green Prosperity Plan, which includes creating a publicly-owned green power company, is not being dropped altogether.

But Labour will no longer commit to investing £28bn a year in green energy projects if it wins the next election.

Labour's position on the policy in recent weeks has been increasingly muddled, with some senior figures repeatedly refusing to use the £28bn figure when pressed in interviews, while others, including party leader Sir Keir Starmer, continued to do so.

It is expected Labour will argue that they have to focus on being seen as responsible stewards of the economy, rather than committing to a spending pledge that opponents regard as reckless.

The plan to spend £28bn a year on green energy projects, like offshore wind farms and developing electric vehicles, was first announced by shadow chancellor Rachel Reeves in September 2021.

That pledge was watered down last June, with the £28bn target adjusted so that a Labour government would meet it about halfway through its first term rather than in its first year.

At the time Ms Reeves said the party needed to be "responsible" with the public finances, given the poor economic backdrop and rising cost of borrowing.

Since then there have been growing questions about whether the policy could be scaled back further.

In an interview last month, Sir Keir described the £28bn figure as "a confident ambition", which was subject to the party's fiscal rules.

These include that debt has to be falling as a share of the size of the economy in five years.

However, unlike some of his shadow ministers, he has continued to use the figure as recently as Tuesday.

The prime minister has repeatedly attacked Sir Keir over the policy, suggesting it will lead to higher taxes.

Privately Labour figures acknowledge a long-standing "brand weakness", as one source put it, when it comes to economic credibility.

So the decision has been taken to focus on attempting to reassure voters they can be trusted with the economy, rather than keeping the £28bn promise.

The move was criticised by left-wing campaign group Momentum and Unite, Labour's biggest union backer.

"This latest Starmer U-turn represents yet another capitulation to right-wing interests," a spokesperson said.

"Sadly, there is a huge gap emerging between the scale of the economic and environmental crises facing us, and the solutions being offered by a Labour leadership afraid of its own shadow."

Unite leader Sharon Graham said: "The Labour movement has to stand up to the Conservatives' false accusations of fiscal irresponsibility.

"There is a catastrophic crisis of investment in Britain's economic infrastructure."

Carla Denyer, co-leader of the Green Party, said: "This is a massive backward step - for the climate, for the economy and for good quality jobs.

"Both the security of our planet for future generations and the UK's future prosperity is dependent on greening our economy and that requires large scale investment."

Chief Secretary to the Treasury Laura Trott said: "This is a serious moment which confirms Labour have no plan for the UK, creating uncertainty for business and our economy.

"On the day that Labour are finalising their manifesto, Keir Starmer is torpedoing what he has claimed to be his central economic policy purely for short-term campaigning reasons."

Sir Keir had set a deadline of Thursday to finalise his party's draft general election manifesto.

It comes on the day the Conservatives claimed, via Treasury analysis, that part of the plan, to insulate homes, would cost double what Labour had claimed it would. Labour has rejected the analysis as "bogus".
Labour making headlines for the wrog reason and desperately striving to grab defeats from the jaws of victory.
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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

Post by Juubi Karakuchi »

It's Peter Mandleson's 'Southern Strategy' all over again.

The most convincing (short) explanation I've ever heard for British voting patterns came from James Hawes 'The Shortest History of England'. He concluded that British voters have traditionally voted on national or regional lines, defined by cultural difference. The Liberal Party extended the franchise in the hope that people would vote against the Tories on class lines, but instead the south of England consistently voted Tory; and has done ever since. By contrast, the Liberals - and later the Labour Party - depended on the north of England, Scotland, Wales, and Ireland. Irish independence weakened the Liberal vote just before Labour took their place; making it very difficult for Labour to win so long as people voted along the usual cultural lines.

The Southern Strategy was meant to defeat this problem. It required a Labour leader who was somehow 'northern' enough to keep the party base on side, but sufficiently 'southern' enough to appeal to southern Tory voters; or at least not scare them back into the Tory camp. The leader chosen was Tony Blair, and the strategy initially worked; but it pushed the Labour Party and base's tolerance to the limit. Devolution and levelling up were Blair and Brown's attempts to appease them.

Boris Johnson basically did the same thing but in reverse; appeal to Labour votes by promising them levelling up (which had collapsed under austerity), only to ruin himself later. Starmer seems to be trying the same thing again; endlessly appeasing the Tory south while praying the Labour base stays with him.

I suspect the ultimate result will be the same. Starmer will win, but be left with a resentful party and voter base who must be somehow appeased; plus the utter disaster the Tories have left him. Starmerism will be Blairism without the good times.
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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

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Rishi Sunak refuses to apologise to Brianna Ghey's family over 'legitimate' trans jibe at PMQs
Rishi Sunak has refused to apologise to Brianna Ghey's family over a trans jibe he made in the Commons on Wednesday.

The prime minister said it was “sad and wrong” to link his comments at Prime Minister’s Questions to Brianna’s case.

Brianna’s father, Peter Spooner, told ITV News Mr Sunak should say sorry for the “degrading” and “dehumanising” remark made in the Commons.

Esther Ghey, the mother of Brianna, a trans teenager who was murdered, was visiting Parliament when Mr Sunak aimed the jibe at Sir Keir Starmer. MPs had been told just moments before that she was expected to be watching PMQs from the public gallery.

Replying to calls to apologise to Brianna's family, Mr Sunak said on Thursday: “Like everyone, I was completely shocked by Brianna’s case. To have your child taken from you in such awful circumstances is almost impossible to come to terms with, and for Brianna’s mum to talk with such empathy and compassion about that, I thought, was inspiring and it showed the very best of humanity.

“I’ve nothing but the most heartfelt sympathy for her entire family and friends.

“But to use that tragedy to detract from the very separate and clear point I was making about Keir Starmer’s proven track record of multiple U-turns on major policies, because he doesn’t have a plan, I think is both sad and wrong, and it demonstrates the worst of politics.”

Pressed further on whether he will honour the apology Brianna's father has asked for, Mr Sunak reiterated his point that it was "legitimate" to point out the leader of the opposition's U-turns.

The PM's official spokesman later rejected the suggestion Mr Sunak has repeatedly used transgender people as a punchline or a joke.

“I wouldn’t accept that he does that," said the spokesman. "I think, as you can see from the exchange yesterday and in previous exchanges, he’s obviously made political points in relation to the opposition".

He added that "the prime minister has always been clear that everyone should be free to live happy lives, everyone should be treated with dignity and respect. That’s the values that he holds, those are British values".

Brianna, 16, was stabbed to death by Scarlett Jenkinson and Eddie Ratcliffe, both 15 at the time, after luring her to a park in Cheshire on February 11 last year. Jenkinson and Ratcliffe were last week sentenced to life behind bars.

The court heard transphobia played a part in her "exceptionally brutal" murder, with the judge telling Ratcliffe: "Your messages about Brianna were transphobic. You consistently referred to her in a way that was dehumanising."

Mr Sunak's refusal to apologise comes after Briana's father, Mr Spooner, told ITV News: "I feel the prime minister's comments were unacceptable. As the leader of our country he should have a more sensitive approach.

"Regardless of this being a topic for Parliament, he has been dehumanising in his approach.

"I feel he should apologise for his remarks which have come across degrading."

Eather Ghey said in a post today on her campaign page, Peace & Mind UK, that she didn't want to comment and instead said her focus is on creating a "more under standing, peaceful, and stronger society for everyone" in memory of her daughter.

"I don't wish to comment on reports of wording or comments recently made. My focus is on creating a positive change and a lasting legacy for Brianna," she wrote.

The exchange between the leaders took place during PMQs in the House of Commons, which Sir Keir had opened by praising the "unwavering bravery" of Ms Ghey which, he said, has "touched us all".

"As a father, I can’t even imagine the pain that she is going through and I am glad that she is with us in the gallery here today,” Sir Keir, who met Ms Ghey on Wednesday, told MPs.

Several minutes later, Mr Sunak and Sir Keir began clashing over the government missing targets to reduce NHS waiting lists.

The Labour leader said of the PM: “He says he stands by his commitments. He once insisted if he missed his promises, these are the words he used: ‘I am the prime minister,’ and then he said: ‘It is on me personally.’

“Today, we learn from his own officials that he is the blocker to any deal to end the doctors’ strikes and every time he is asked, he blames everyone else.

“So, what exactly did he mean when he said it is on him personally if he doesn’t meet his promise?”

Mr Sunak replied: “We are bringing the waiting lists down for the longest waiters and making progress, but it is a bit rich to hear about promises from someone who has broken every single promise he was elected on.

“I think I have counted almost 30 in the last year. Pensions, planning, peerages, public sector pay, tuition fees, childcare, second referendums, defining a woman – although in fairness, that was only 99% of a U-turn".

A shocked Sir Keir hit back, saying: “Of all the weeks to say that, when Brianna’s mother is in this chamber. Shame.

“Parading as a man of integrity when he’s got absolutely no responsibility.”

The Labour leader added that the role of the prime minister is to "ensure that every single citizen in this country feels safe and respected, it’s a shame that the prime minister doesn’t share that.”

Commons leader Penny Mordaunt suggested Mr Sunak should reflect on his words - as should Sir Keir.

She said: “Whatever the rough and tumble of this place, whatever the pressures and mistakes that are made in the heat of political combat, we owe it to the people who sent us here to strive every day to make them proud of us and this place.

“The prime minister is a good and caring man. I am sure that he has reflected on things and I understand he will say something later today, or perhaps even during this session.

“That is not just about Mr and Mrs Ghey that he should reflect on, but I am sure he is also reflecting about people who are trans, or who have trans loved ones and family, some of whom sit on these green benches".
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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

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Spotted on the net
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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

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Apparently Starmer has realised the country cannot afford the green agenda he's been advocating. That's Labour's problem- being unable to balance the books.
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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

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Yeah who needs to the world survive, what about the economy?
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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

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I guess taxes can't be raised anymore. Or anything done about all the faffing about with corrupt deals that cost the tax payers billions while benefiting mates of MPs and the like. Nothing. can. be. done.

Better things are simply not possible.
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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

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His Divine Shadow wrote: 2024-02-09 02:39pm I guess taxes can't be raised anymore. Or anything done about all the faffing about with corrupt deals that cost the tax payers billions while benefiting mates of MPs and the like. Nothing. can. be. done.

Better things are simply not possible.
Actually they can, the problem is that they always seem to target the poor instead of the rich.
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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

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As with a great many other public works projects, the question we should really be asking is, "What's not doing this going to cost us?"
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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

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Zaune wrote: 2024-02-09 08:51pm As with a great many other public works projects, the question we should really be asking is, "What's not doing this going to cost us?"
Politicians do not tally expenses, they tally votes.

If any action will cost them votes, they won't do it.
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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

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How many votes is losing Ukraine going to cost them?
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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

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EnterpriseSovereign wrote: 2024-02-10 12:41pm How many votes is losing Ukraine going to cost them?
We were talking about green energy investments.

Which is a controversial topic among pretty much every demographic, especially if you start raising cost of living and still have to raise taxes to implement your plans.
A minute's thought suggests that the very idea of this is stupid. A more detailed examination raises the possibility that it might be an answer to the question "how could the Germans win the war after the US gets involved?" - Captain Seafort, in a thread proposing a 1942 'D-Day' in Quiberon Bay

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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

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LaCroix wrote: 2024-02-12 09:05am
EnterpriseSovereign wrote: 2024-02-10 12:41pm How many votes is losing Ukraine going to cost them?
We were talking about green energy investments.

Which is a controversial topic among pretty much every demographic, especially if you start raising cost of living and still have to raise taxes to implement your plans.
The taxes always target the wrong people, the people/corporations who should be taxed often don't pay their share.
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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

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Try and tax those and the media targets you until you are dead.
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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

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Starmer insists Labour 'has changed' as party 'suspends' second candidate over Israel comments
Sir Keir Starmer said he took "tough and decisive" action to withdraw Labour's support for its Rochdale by-election candidate over his "appalling" remarks made about Israel - but it came as new revelations threatened to reignite the row.

Labour is facing further questions after one of its election candidates, Graham Jones, allegedly referred to "f***ing Israel" at a meeting, according to a leaked recording obtained by Guido Fawkes.

He also allegedly said that Britons who volunteer to fight for the Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) "should be locked up". Mr Jones also falsely claimed that it is illegal for British citizens to do so.

ITV News understands Mr Jones - a former Labour MP for Hyndburn who lost his seat in 2019 and is seeking to stand again - has been administratively suspended from the Labour Party, pending an investigation.

Labour would have to follow a formal process if the party wanted to strip him of his candidacy, but he is believed to have been called for an interview on Tuesday evening.

His comments were allegedly made at the same Lancashire Labour Party meeting at which former Rochdale by-election candidate Azhar Ali's remarks were made.

The latest row to emerge from the meeting came only hours after the Labour leader insisted the party had “changed” under his leadership, following the move to strip Mr Ali, who is believed to be suspended pending an investigation, of his party’s backing.

The Labour leadership has been facing questions as to why it took so long to withdraw support for Mr Ali, after he was recorded suggesting in the meeting that Israel had allowed Hamas to attack on October 7 as a pretext to invade Gaza.

Mr Ali, who is also a Lancashire County Councillor, apologised to the Jewish community and retracted his original remarks, which he described as “deeply offensive, ignorant and false”.

For almost two days, Labour stood by his candidacy in the Greater Manchester town but the party later withdrew support after "new information about further comments” about Israel came to light.

According to a story published by the Daily Mail on Monday night, Mr Ali also said “people in the media from certain Jewish quarters” were “giving crap” about MP Andy McDonald, who was suspended by Labour after he used the phrase “between the river and the sea” in a speech during a rally.

The paper also said the now-former Labour candidate claimed that Israel planned to “get rid of [Palestinians] from Gaza” and “grab” some of the land.

The party leadership was pressed on why Mr Ali had not been immediately suspended after the first comments emerged.

Sir Keir has repeatedly insisted he has rooted out antisemitism in the party, and said he took "tough and decisive" action to withdraw support for his candidate in the Labour stronghold seat.

Starmer told broadcasters on Tuesday it is a "huge thing" and "virtually unprecedented" to withdraw support for a candidate during the course of a by-election, as he condemned the remarks as "appalling".

Tthe Labour leader said: “Certain information came to light over the weekend in relation to the candidate. There was a fulsome apology.

“Further information came to light yesterday calling for decisive action, so I took decisive action."

“It’s a tough decision, a necessary decision, but when I say the Labour Party has changed under my leadership I mean it," he added.

Sir Keir has sought to move his party on from the Corbyn era, which was overshadowed by controversies over antisemitism, and insisted "it is absolutely clear" his party has changed.

When pressed, Starmer said any allegations against other Labour councillors present at the event at which Mr Ali made his widely condemned remarks would be “fully investigated by the party”.

The party recently suspended the MP Kate Osamor after she appeared to say the Gaza war should be remembered as genocide on Holocaust Memorial Day.

The decision to withdraw backing for the candidate will come as a blow to the party, which had hoped to retain the Labour stronghold seat following the death last month of sitting MP Sir Tony Lloyd.

Lord John Mann, a former Labour MP who is now an independent adviser to UK Government on antisemitism, told ITV News that Sir Keir will be "absolutely seething” over the situation, but he believes the Labour leader has done the right thing.

He said: "It’s a massive decision. This has never happened with a Parliamentary seat where the incumbent party expected to win – probably would’ve won – has thrown that seat. It’s a big bold decision by Starmer and I would commend him for it.

"I think the Jewish community actually will take a lot of reassurance that this decision has been made."

Lord Mann said there’s been an "extreme" growth in antisemitism not only in politics but across the nation.

"It’s not just in politics, it’s not just in the Labour Party - it’s across the political scene," he said. "Anyone that thinks this is a Labour problem, is being dangerously naïve, this is a national problem."

But Defence Secretary Grant Shapps accused Sir Keir of acting out of "weakness" and "political expediency" rather than out of "principle".

He told broadcasters: "I think Starmer has been taking the public for fools. He's supported and promoted a candidate who has expressed the most atrocious racism against Jewish people."

Rishi Sunak, speaking to GB News viewers on Monday at an event in County Durham, said it was a “con” to suggest Labour has been reformed.

He said: “Keir Starmer has been running around for the last year trying to tell everybody ‘Okay, Labour Party’s changed’. Well, look what just happened in Rochdale.”

He accused Starmer of having “stood by and sent cabinet ministers to support him, until literally five minutes before I walked on tonight, under enormous media pressure, has decided to change his mind on principle”.

“No principles at all,” he added.

Labour’s decision will add considerable uncertainty to the outcome of the by-election when voters go to the polls at the end of the month.

Also running in Rochdale are former Labour MP Simon Danczuk, now the Reform Party candidate, and George Galloway, of the Workers Party of Britain, who is campaigning against Labour’s stance on Gaza.

About 20% of the electorate and 30% of the population of the town are Asian, with polls nationally suggesting Labour’s vote could be hit by Asian people unhappy with the party over Palestine and its perceived support for Israel.

If elected, Mr Ali will sit as an independent MP and will not receive the party whip. The decision means that Labour will also need to find a new candidate to contest the seat at the upcoming general election.

A spokesperson for Campaign Against Antisemitism said: “Sir Keir Starmer has blotted an otherwise fairly admirable copybook and given the public reason to doubt the earnestness of his promise to tear antisemitism out ‘by its roots’ in Labour...

“Rather than appearing as a principled decision, Labour’s withdrawal of support for its candidate at this late stage just looks as expedient as the failed attempt to defend him. It is the worst of all worlds for Labour.”
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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

Post by Zaune »

Well, I'm now on first-name terms with my local MP. The local Tories have discovered that when their MP gets booted out of Parliament for waving his genitals at the staff it's probably not a good idea to appoint the woman he started shagging while his wife was in hospital with cancer as a replacement candidate, even if he blackmails them by threatening to split the vote by running as an independent.
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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

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Zaune wrote: 2024-02-16 05:46am Well, I'm now on first-name terms with my local MP. The local Tories have discovered that when their MP gets booted out of Parliament for waving his genitals at the staff it's probably not a good idea to appoint the woman he started shagging while his wife was in hospital with cancer as a replacement candidate, even if he blackmails them by threatening to split the vote by running as an independent.
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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

Post by Zaune »

Yeah, I know. Peter Bone was thoroughly unpleasant even by Tory standards, and the swing to Labour was gratifyingly hefty.
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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

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Haha. Bone, hefty and swing!
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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

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'Fantastic results': Labour secures double victory in Kingswood and Wellingborough by-elections
Rishi Sunak has suffered a double blow after losing both the Kingswood and Wellingborough by-elections on Friday.

The prime minister insisted the circumstances around the by-elections were "particularly challenging" after Labour overturned two big majorities, which Sir Keir Starmer said showed "people are crying out for change".

Labour overturned majorities of 11,220 and 18,540, delivering the government’s ninth and tenth by-election defeats of the current Parliament and securing its second largest swing from the Conservatives ever.

Gen Kitchen secured Wellingborough with 45.8% of the vote, while Damien Egan won Kingswood with 44.9% of the vote.

In Wellingborough, the swing of 28.5% was the second biggest from the Tories to Labour in any by-election since the Second World War.

The results provided Labour with a boost after a U-turn on the party’s pledge to spend £28 billion on green projects and an antisemitism row that forced it to drop its candidate for another by-election in Rochdale in two weeks’ time.

The twin defeat piles more pressure on the prime minister following the news that the UK entered a recession at the end of 2023, while Reform UK scored its best by-election results after targeting disgruntled voters on the right, securing more than 10% of the vote for the first time in a by-election.

Reform deputy leader Ben Habib won 13% of the vote in Wellingborough, while Rupert Lowe won 10% in Kingswood.

The results also mean the government has now suffered the most by-election defeats of any government since the 1960s, surpassing the eight defeats suffered by John Major in the run-up to Tony Blair’s 1997 landslide victory.

Mr Sunak claimed there is “not a huge amount of enthusiasm” for Labour despite the party flipping Tory majorities in the tens of thousands overnight.

“Midterm elections are always difficult for incumbent governments, and the circumstances of these elections were of course particularly challenging," he added.

The PM said it was a "very low turnout" but the victories still show "that we’ve got work to do to show people that we are delivering on their priorities".

Sir Keir hailed the victories, saying: “These are fantastic results in Kingswood and Wellingborough that show people want change and are ready to put their faith in a changed Labour Party to deliver it.

“By winning in these Tory strongholds, we can confidently say that Labour is back in the service of working people and we will work tirelessly to deliver for them.

“The Tories have failed. Rishi’s recession proves that. That’s why we’ve seen so many former Conservative voters switching directly to this changed Labour Party.

“Those who gave us their trust in Kingswood and Wellingborough, and those considering doing so, can be safe in the knowledge that we will spend every day working to get Britain’s future back.”

In Wellingborough, the result announced at 4am showed Ms Kitchen, who cut short her honeymoon to campaign in the by-election, saw a Tory majority of more than 18,000 turn into a Labour majority of 6,436.

The swing of 28.5% is the largest from the Conservatives to Labour since the 1994 Dudley West by-election, where a 29.1% swing presaged Tony Blair’s landslide victory three years later.

Ms Kitchen said: “The people of Wellingborough have spoken for Britain. This is a stunning victory for the Labour Party and must send a message from Northamptonshire to Downing Street.”

In Kingswood, where the result was announced shortly before 2am, Labour’s Mr Egan defeated Conservative Sam Bromiley, securing 11,176 votes and a majority of 2,501.

In his victory speech, Mr Egan said: “In Kingswood, as across the country, 14 years of Conservative Government have sucked the hope out of our country with a feeling that no matter how hard you work, you just can’t move forward.

“And with Rishi’s recession we’re left again paying more and getting less. It doesn’t have to be this way, you know it, I know it, we all know it."

Speaking about his win, he told ITV News: "It just means so much to me. To be surrounded by my family, to have had a really positive campaign and reconnected with lots of school friends that I had, to represent the area that you grew up in that you know so well, that you love.

"I just hope I can really make a positive difference."

Defeated Conservative candidate Sam Bromiley left the count as soon as Mr Egan had finished speaking, declining to comment to reporters.

Senior Conservative MP Sir Jacob Rees-Mogg acknowledged the Tories would need to “learn” from the results, saying: “Conservative Party votes are most likely to come from people who stay at home or who voted Reform.

“How do we win them back to the Tory family? People who share many views and values with us."

The defeats mean the Conservatives have suffered more by-election losses in this Parliament than any previous government since the 1960s, surpassing the eight defeats experienced by John Major between 1992 and 1997.

Chris Skidmore was the MP in Kingswood, before he resigned at the start of the year over legislation to boost North Sea oil and gas drilling.

Mr Skidmore had led a government review of net zero and made a scathing attack on Prime Minister Rishi Sunak's environmental commitments.

He won the Gloucestershire constituency for the Tories at the past four general elections, before which Labour held it at every general election since 1992.

The by-election in Wellingborough was triggered by a six-week suspension of Conservative MP Peter Bone after an inquiry found he had subjected a member of staff to bullying and sexual misconduct.

The report concluded he "committed many varied acts of bullying and one act of sexual misconduct" more than 10 years ago, which he denied.

New laws meant that voters needed to bring photo ID, such as a passport or driving licence, with them in order to vote.
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His Divine Shadow
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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

Post by His Divine Shadow »

Labour gained 107 votes in Wellingborough and the Tories lost 24,869 compared to 2019. So it's not really people voting for Labour more than they did, just conservative vote collapse. I haven't seen how it went in Kingswood but not surprised if that too is more a result of cons not voting.

However to be fair, it could be the cons switched to voting for labour this time around.
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Juubi Karakuchi
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Re: Brexit and not very united kingdom politics II

Post by Juubi Karakuchi »

His Divine Shadow wrote: 2024-02-17 02:41am Labour gained 107 votes in Wellingborough and the Tories lost 24,869 compared to 2019. So it's not really people voting for Labour more than they did, just conservative vote collapse. I haven't seen how it went in Kingswood but not surprised if that too is more a result of cons not voting.

However to be fair, it could be the cons switched to voting for labour this time around.
BBC is putting Kingswood as 44.9% Labour (up 11.5 pp) and Tories at 34.9% (down 21.3pp); out of a 37.1% (down 34.4 pp). So yes, this seems to be essentially the Biden factor; people are going for Starmer whatever their doubts, because they want rid of the Tories that badly.

As a minor aside, Reform got 13.1% in Wellingborough and 10.8% in Kingswood; both candidates standing for the first time. The Independent has this to say.


https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/p ... 96168.html
Reform Party hopes of snatching working class vote at general election doomed, say pollsters
Exclusive: Britain’s leading pollster has poured cold water on the former Brexit Party’s hopes of stealing working class votes from Keir Starmer

Zoe Grunewald


Keir Starmer’s Labour party is widely anticipated to win the next general election

Reform UK’s hopes of stealing working class Labour voters away from Keir Starmer’s camp at the next general election has been met with scepticism from leading pollsters, The Independent can reveal.

The rebranded Brexit party, led by Richard Tice and co-founded by Nigel Farage, has labelled itself "the party of the working class", declaring it is now the real home of Labour supporters.

But Britain’s top pollster Sir John Curtice has poured cold water on the claims, predicting that their prospects in Labour heartlands remain slim.

The most recent by-elections saw Reform make a significant dent in the Conservative vote – taking a third of the overall vote share in both Wellingborough and Kingswood.

But the party have not yet proven they can land a blow on Labour. In Wellingborough, despite Reform receiving 13 per cent of the vote share, Labour still overturned a Conservative stronghold with the largest by-election swing since 1994 and a majority of 6,436 votes.

Sir John, who is professor of politics at Strathclyde University, told the Independent that the crucial factor that distinguishes those who switch to Reform is that “they still believe in Brexit”.

Although he conceded that Labour’s vote is not “wholly invulnerable” to the ex-Brexit Party, that vulnerability is “limited” because around three quarters of Labour’s vote stems from people who “want to be inside the European Union.”


He said: “If you’re discontenting of the Tories and you change your mind about Brexit then you tend to go to Labour. If, however, you’re discontented with the Tories but you’re still a Brexit believer you tend to switch to Reform.”

Tice has built the party as a populist right-wing alternative to the Conservatives, campaigning for closed borders, lower taxes and a roll back of net-zero targets. Reform has also claimed that the party is currently delivering “phase one“ of its project, which is “destroying the Conservative party”, and will next become a credible alternative to Labour.

Sir Keir Starmer meanwhile, is attempting to ensure the working class vote by putting Labour’s New Deal for Workers – a series of reforms aimed at strengthening worker’s rights in the UK – front and centre of his campaign, while also pledging to take a tougher approach to law, order and immigration.

Labour are currently polling 12-points ahead of the Conservatives as voters of all demographics abandon the Tories after fourteen turbulent years in government.

Mr Tice has warned the country faces “Starmergeddon” if it elects Labour, stating that “only Reform UK is now the party of the working class, who will stop mass immigration, who will scrap net zero, who will help solve the cost of living crisis.”

While pollsters say Reform is nibbling away at a certain piece of the 2019 Conservative vote, characterised by working class voters in traditional Labour heartlands who voted overwhelmingly for Boris Johnson and who became known as ‘the Red wall’, they refute the party’s chances of damaging Labour.

Scarlett Maguire, director at polling and political research company JL partners, acknowledged that while Reform are “pulling away about 21 per cent or so of people who voted Conservative in 2019”, the party is “just not pulling away Labour voters in the same way.”

Ms Maguire added that in the research conducted by her company suggested “69 per cent of current Reform voters voted Conservative in 2019, while just 4 per cent voted Labour”.

Clacton-on-Sea - the seat that former Brexit party leader Nigel Farage is rumoured to be considering should he run as a Reform candidate - is only polling at 18 per cent – inviting scepticism about the party’s prospects in Westminster.

Conservative peer and psephologist Lord Hayward similarly dismissed Mr Tice’s chances, emphasizing the ethnic diversity of Labour’s working-class voter base – a group Reform has alienated through its hostile stance on immigration and diversity.

A 2019 Ipsos MORI poll estimated that Labour won the votes of 64 per cent of all Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) voters in 2019, while just 20 per cent voted for the Conservatives.


“It would therefore be an interesting concept for a party that’s majored its campaign at essentially the white working class 2019 Tory voters, suddenly setting out to capture a group of people that effectively their campaign has set about alienating,” Lord Hayward told the Independent.

A Labour source also dismissed Reform UK’s chances, saying that the party were only concerned about fighting the Conservatives: "We’re focused on winning elections and to do that we need to beat the Tories. We’re not wasting our time worrying about whatever Richard Tice is saying to get attention this week.”

Reform UK have been approached for comment.
Emphasis mine. In short, Reform seems to be stealing working class Tory and pro-Brexit votes, while pro-EU voters are rallying to Labour as the least-worst option.
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