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Gary JG
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« Reply #500 on: June 19, 2021, 04:44:26 PM »

Why should Sir Keir Starmer have to resign because of two by-election losses? Labour leaders, back to Harold Wilson in the 1966-70 Parliament, have suffered numerous large by-election defeats without having to resign. The talent pool in the Parliamentary Labour Party seems very shallow at the moment, so I do not see how any possible replacement would be certain to be an improvement.
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Oryxslayer
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« Reply #501 on: June 19, 2021, 05:50:16 PM »
« Edited: June 19, 2021, 05:53:46 PM by Oryxslayer »

Why should Sir Keir Starmer have to resign because of two by-election losses? Labour leaders, back to Harold Wilson in the 1966-70 Parliament, have suffered numerous large by-election defeats without having to resign. The talent pool in the Parliamentary Labour Party seems very shallow at the moment, so I do not see how any possible replacement would be certain to be an improvement.

The argument of the detractors basically is that Labour should be gaining percentage-wise in local or by-election midterms, because they are the party out of power and do not face the scrutiny of the government. The worldwide advantage of opposition is that one always can lob complaints at the government without proposing their own answers to the problem. Labour however is consistently losing ground, and the grassroots narrative (perhaps truthful, perhaps not, likely in between) is that Labour presently stands for nothing. The blame for this has been dumped at Starmer's feet, since he has not proposed how the opposition would differ from the Tories on major policy, nor has he put forward any hypothetical programs. When they tried to go after Tory privileges and sleaze before the  locals, like how an opposition usually criticizes the government mismanagement, voters told reporters it came off as aloof from the actual issues. Starmer's interview with the BBC the day after Hartlepool is an example of this perception, where he keeps using the buzzwords of change and accountability, but can't articulate on exactly what.

To summarize, Starmer has an image of a dutiful technocrat, a image that works well when you are at the helm steering the nation through it's troubles. It does not work when you have no power and responsible for change and the alternative.


But yes, the issue replacing Starmer is that the PLP lacks clear alternative parliamentary - rather than factional - leaders, which is why I suspect if there is a ouster then Burnam will be called to leave Manchester and emulate Cincinnatus.
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Blair
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« Reply #502 on: June 20, 2021, 02:57:06 AM »

Arguably Keir only won in 2020 because the Talent Pool was so dire & those who were better politicians than him couldn't bear to play the 'pretend to like Corbynism & serve in the Shadow Cabinet' role.

Labour has a very real problem in thinking that the grass is always greener with another leader- Gordon would be better than Tony, David better that Ed, Dan Jarvis better than Andy Burnham, Yvette Cooper better than Corbyn, Keir better than Corbyn & now Burnham better than Keir- and will no doubt return if Burnham becomes leader & we have the moral panic about one his many flaws.

It is also worth remembering that a lot of people want Labour to lose these by-elections as they want an excuse to get rid of Keir- it was the exact same for the Labour right in 2016. I'm not sure how much of it is just hyper-onlineism but the Labour party has a toxicity problem that neither other party has.

It was being briefed last year that Keir would be challenged in year two if he was not leading in the polls (and it was briefed the day after JC became leader that he would be removed)

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Southern Deputy Speaker Punxsutawney Phil
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« Reply #503 on: June 20, 2021, 02:59:36 AM »
« Edited: June 20, 2021, 03:55:51 AM by Southern Deputy Speaker Punxsutawney Phil »

Arguably Keir only won in 2020 because the Talent Pool was so dire & those who were better politicians than him couldn't bear to play the 'pretend to like Corbynism & serve in the Shadow Cabinet' role.

Labour has a very real problem in thinking that the grass is always greener with another leader- Gordon would be better than Tony, David better that Ed, Dan Jarvis better than Andy Burnham, Yvette Cooper better than Corbyn, Keir better than Corbyn & now Burnham better than Keir- and will no doubt return if Burnham becomes leader & we have the moral panic about one his many flaws.

It is also worth remembering that a lot of people want Labour to lose these by-elections as they want an excuse to get rid of Keir- it was the exact same for the Labour right in 2016. I'm not sure how much of it is just hyper-onlineism but the Labour party has a toxicity problem that neither other party has.

It was being briefed last year that Keir would be challenged in year two if he was not leading in the polls (and it was briefed the day after JC became leader that he would be removed)


So many in the Labour Party seem to have as much confidence in the elected leader of their party as a Premier League team would have in its coach...
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CumbrianLeftie
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« Reply #504 on: June 20, 2021, 05:27:00 AM »

Starmer was in a strong position only six months ago, his only consistent internal opposition coming from the Very Online Left. Its the almost breathtaking succession of unforced errors since then that have left even many that were previously fully supportive in despair.

Almost nobody still thinks (to the extent that they ever did) that just changing the leader again will resolve Labour's long standing and intractable issues - not least the seemingly endemic factionalism -  but getting somebody in who basically understands not just the party but simply politics itself might at least stem the haemorrhaging of support even from groups that remained loyal under Corbyn.
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TheTide
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« Reply #505 on: June 20, 2021, 06:25:19 AM »

Why should Sir Keir Starmer have to resign because of two by-election losses? Labour leaders, back to Harold Wilson in the 1966-70 Parliament, have suffered numerous large by-election defeats without having to resign. The talent pool in the Parliamentary Labour Party seems very shallow at the moment, so I do not see how any possible replacement would be certain to be an improvement.

Wilson isn't the best comparison in this case because he was Prime Minister. By-elections are generally a struggle for governments regardless of popularity - even Labour didn't manage to gain any in the late 1990s.
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CumbrianLeftie
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« Reply #506 on: June 20, 2021, 07:45:28 AM »

Why should Sir Keir Starmer have to resign because of two by-election losses? Labour leaders, back to Harold Wilson in the 1966-70 Parliament, have suffered numerous large by-election defeats without having to resign. The talent pool in the Parliamentary Labour Party seems very shallow at the moment, so I do not see how any possible replacement would be certain to be an improvement.

Between 1945 and 2016, there were just three Westminster byelection gains by the governing party - one of them was, ironically, the predecessor seat of Batley and Spen. Should that one go the way the latest poll predicts, that will be three in just four years - and two in a matter of months, with the same man in charge of the losing party on both occasions. That would be *totally* unprecedented.

And sandwiched between them a result that illustrates that Starmer can't even use "the Tories are currently a totally unstoppable electoral juggernaut" as an excuse - well it doesn't look good, does it?
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c r a b c a k e
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« Reply #507 on: June 20, 2021, 10:00:59 AM »
« Edited: June 20, 2021, 10:07:05 AM by c r a b c a k e »

Fun fact: the Labour Party has only made one gain in a by-election in the 21st century (Corby in 2012).

In general, the party has had bad luck in what seats have come up; but it's been a very poor record - even in the Miliband era you had herculean efforts to win seats like Heywood and Middleton etc. The rot has been settling in, and sadly it's bigger than Corbyn and Starmer.

Maybe this matters, maybe this doesn't: after all the Lib Dems have a history of patting themselves on their back and then flopping in the real election (before Chesham we have Eastleigh and Richmond Park, both of which were washed away in the very next election). But the fact is we have a repeated event of Labour desperately trying to stop losses from opposition, even in times of unpopular governments. Peterborough. Hartlepool. Stoke Central. Copeland.
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CumbrianLeftie
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« Reply #508 on: June 20, 2021, 10:28:00 AM »

Peterborough is hardly the same as the others you mentioned tbf, that was a decent hold in any book.

And there could be two highly winnable (at least on paper) targets for Labour up soon......
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Filuwaúrdjan
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« Reply #509 on: June 20, 2021, 10:50:52 AM »

Fun fact: the Labour Party has only made one gain in a by-election in the 21st century (Corby in 2012).

In general, the party has had bad luck in what seats have come up; but it's been a very poor record - even in the Miliband era you had herculean efforts to win seats like Heywood and Middleton etc. The rot has been settling in, and sadly it's bigger than Corbyn and Starmer.

Maybe this matters, maybe this doesn't: after all the Lib Dems have a history of patting themselves on their back and then flopping in the real election (before Chesham we have Eastleigh and Richmond Park, both of which were washed away in the very next election). But the fact is we have a repeated event of Labour desperately trying to stop losses from opposition, even in times of unpopular governments. Peterborough. Hartlepool. Stoke Central. Copeland.

Yes, I think we've reached the stage where we can say with confidence that Labour struggles with by-elections pretty much full stop. There are exceptions here, there are exceptions there, but the general picture is what it is. And if this fact can be acknowledged we can maybe try to ponder why this might be: beyond train-wreck campaigns and poor candidates (which have only applied in some cases), the big issue seems to be a basic inability to turn existing voters out or to drum up enthusiasm amongst new ones. Labour's by-election campaigns tend to have the same basic tone and tenor (one that has not shifted through successive leaderships) and the electorate mostly seems to find it boring.

It is, incidentally, an open secret that Labour's default strategy when defending seats in by-elections for a long time has been to set a particular 'target' in terms of raw votes (exactly what this is depends on the size of the constituency, but it is usually around about 12,000 or so) and to hope that a) they manage to do this and that b) the challenging party - if there is one - is unable to breach the dike. It is a very conservative strategy and I would suggest probably not successful enough in general to be the only option considered, as for years it often has been.
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CumbrianLeftie
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« Reply #510 on: June 20, 2021, 11:07:16 AM »

A factor in recent years, given the age polarisation that has occurred in the last decade, is likely that it is disproportionately older voters who turn out for them (more than at GEs, I mean) And of course this will benefit the right if so (I do wonder if the LibDems managed to buck this trend somewhat in C&A?)
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rc18
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« Reply #511 on: June 21, 2021, 06:05:46 AM »
« Edited: June 21, 2021, 04:47:10 PM by rc18 »

A factor in recent years, given the age polarisation that has occurred in the last decade, is likely that it is disproportionately older voters who turn out for them (more than at GEs, I mean) And of course this will benefit the right if so (I do wonder if the LibDems managed to buck this trend somewhat in C&A?)

It's not just disproportionately getting older, but also disproportionately becoming higher social grade (ABC1), which is where the majority of LD support comes from. This had been happening for a while but you can really see it in the changes in voting patterns over the Blair years. So it's not surprising the Lib Dems have done well in by-elections and locals in affluent areas in recent years only to flop when everyone else bothers to vote. So these changes are not all good for the Right now considering how much the support base for various parties has changed.
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CumbrianLeftie
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« Reply #512 on: June 21, 2021, 06:20:27 AM »

A rather serious claim was made yesterday - that an unnamed "senior Labour official" had basically smeared the entirety of Muslim voters in Batley and Spen as anti-Semitic, and claimed their main reason for being receptive to Galloway's blandishments was Starmer having a Jewish wife.

Now given the original source for this (one DPJ Hodges) its veracity should certainly be treated with some caution (the "senior Labour" bit perhaps especially so) but it fits in with a pattern with certain galaxy brains near the top of the party treating those groups who *actually* vote for it with all but undisguised loathing. A message of "we are rubbish and so are all our voters" tends not to be hugely electorally successful - still, they are VERY SERIOUS PEOPLE who totally know what they are doing Tongue
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Fubart Solman
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« Reply #513 on: June 21, 2021, 06:48:05 PM »

We could be in for a special treat later this year:



A Northern Irish Westminster By-Election in Lagan Valley. I donít see it as being as competitive as some people are suggesting though. But you never know!
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« Reply #514 on: June 21, 2021, 07:52:47 PM »

We could be in for a special treat later this year:



A Northern Irish Westminster By-Election in Lagan Valley. I donít see it as being as competitive as some people are suggesting though. But you never know!

Alliance surged there last time, but hard to see them getting to the 35-40% they'd need to actually win the seat. Would be an immediate test of whether Donaldson could rescue the DUP's fortunes, though; right now, I'd think the DUP might be in danger of losing this seat to the UUP in a by-election if it somehow took place while Poots was still leader.

Incidentally, in the last election there won by a non-DUP candidate, the non-DUP candidate was UUP incumbent... Jeffrey Donaldson. And the losing DUP candidate was none other than Edwin Poots.
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Fubart Solman
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« Reply #515 on: June 21, 2021, 08:01:23 PM »

We could be in for a special treat later this year:



A Northern Irish Westminster By-Election in Lagan Valley. I donít see it as being as competitive as some people are suggesting though. But you never know!

Alliance surged there last time, but hard to see them getting to the 35-40% they'd need to actually win the seat. Would be an immediate test of whether Donaldson could rescue the DUP's fortunes, though; right now, I'd think the DUP might be in danger of losing this seat to the UUP in a by-election if it somehow took place while Poots was still leader.

Incidentally, in the last election there won by a non-DUP candidate, the non-DUP candidate was UUP incumbent... Jeffrey Donaldson. And the losing DUP candidate was none other than Edwin Poots.

Oh, thatís good. I would say that the TUV could throw a wrench in here if they wanted to, but I doubt they will.
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Secretary of State Liberal Hack
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« Reply #516 on: June 21, 2021, 08:32:47 PM »


Quote
The Conservativesí developersí charter would sell off and sell out our communities. Local people, not Tory Party donors, should decide whatís best for where they live.

Labour Party Embraced NIMBYSM it seems. Probably a pundit-brained take from the liberal democrats by-election win.
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MaxQue
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« Reply #517 on: June 22, 2021, 07:56:00 AM »


Quote
The Conservativesí developersí charter would sell off and sell out our communities. Local people, not Tory Party donors, should decide whatís best for where they live.

Labour Party Embraced NIMBYSM it seems. Probably a pundit-brained take from the liberal democrats by-election win.

It's not NIMBY per se. Developers own plenty of land that they don't develop (planning permission has been granted for 1 million houses that are not build), because developpers prefer building luxury houses in the Green Belt at a premium than mixed housing on vacant lots in towns.

It is not NIMBY to say that developpment should follow needs, not potential for profit.
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Filuwaúrdjan
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« Reply #518 on: June 22, 2021, 09:29:47 AM »
« Edited: June 22, 2021, 11:14:35 AM by Filuwaúrdjan »

The Labour Party has always been basically hostile to private developers - even if ahem individual Labour administrations at various lower levels of government have not always been - for ideological reasons and tends to be protective of any vestigial legacies of the Attlee government, such as the national planning apparatus and the Green Belts.
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Conservatopia
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« Reply #519 on: June 22, 2021, 10:41:44 AM »

To be fair the developers deserve the bashing Labour gives them.  Source: I work in this industry.
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Blair
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« Reply #520 on: June 23, 2021, 05:07:31 PM »

There's some pretty wild expectations management going on but the only constant is no-one expects Labour to win.

It would take a Hartlepool esque margin to actually trigger something beyond a 'huh as expected' reaction.
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Intell
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« Reply #521 on: June 25, 2021, 09:50:27 AM »



Labour needs to decide whether it decides to support the conservative muslim community to try to win the election or the LGBT+ community.
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CumbrianLeftie
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« Reply #522 on: June 25, 2021, 10:28:09 AM »

No, its ridiculous to frame the "choice" in such binary terms. These activists are extremists with little strong support in the wider Muslim community (their ringleader is actually from Birmingham too) We can maybe also hope this leads to something of an anti-Galloway backlash.
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Filuwaúrdjan
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« Reply #523 on: June 25, 2021, 10:45:34 AM »

'The Muslim Community' is far from monolithic if it even really exists as a coherent social entity at all. There are major divisions (and they're growing) in terms of levels of integration, in terms of observance, in terms of the nature of observance and so on, and there are ethnic/linguistic divisions. In this constituency, for instance, there are two distinct populations, one from the Mirpur district in Pakistani Kashmir, and one mostly from Gujarat - I believe mostly from the countryside around Surat. Social attitudes and political preferences/priorities are far from uniform and in generally are only getting less so - the striking electoral consolidation at the last GE was very unusual and was triggered by some very specific factors, most of which are either not relevant already or appear to be dormant.

Anyway, there have been strong and credible rumours of... this sort of thing... for some time, so this extremely grim event does not come as a great surprise, as sickening as it is.
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Filuwaúrdjan
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« Reply #524 on: June 25, 2021, 10:56:49 AM »

For those new to such things, this is what Galloway does. He is a demagogue in an extremely classic sense and his principle electoral weapon is his shameless love of slurs, smears, lies and vicious innuendo against his political opponents, quite often spread in ways that are hard to trace. He wakes up dormant unpleasantness, ugly sentiment and festering divisions and he feeds off them. He knows exactly what he is doing and he isn't half bad at it. It could be said that it is a mercy that his target audience is so limited, but it could also be observed that maybe he is a mirror for broader campaigns waged by others at certain times to a larger audience.
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