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Author Topic: UK By-elections thread, 2021-  (Read 74651 times)
Torrain
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E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« on: December 16, 2021, 08:57:11 PM »

Via The Independent: https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/boris-johnson-north-shropshire-by-election-news-live-b1977753.html?amp

Quote

Lib Dems ‘confident’ about comfortable win

Christine Jardine, the Liberal Democrat’s treasury spokesperson, has said she is “confident” the Liberal Democrats have “won comfortably”.

For Boris Johnson, she says, “the party is over”.


Might be spin - but felt worth posting.
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Torrain
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E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« Reply #1 on: February 03, 2022, 07:10:53 PM »
« Edited: February 03, 2022, 08:29:51 PM by Torrain »

Very low turnout - comparable to the 25% turnout for the 2016 Batley and Spen by-election.



Edit: results again in line with the Batley by-election, with only mainstream candidate receiving around 85% of the vote, with none of the fringe candidates holding their deposits.

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Torrain
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Political Matrix
E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« Reply #2 on: March 02, 2022, 05:41:07 PM »

So, the Birmingham Erdington by-election is tomorrow.

Fundamentals look good for Labour, but the 2019 result could indicate weakness. Have to agree with the earlier commentary though, that Labours 50% vote share probably bodes well, when compared to prior by-elections like Hartlepool and Batley and Spen.

Not sure whether it’s been covered yet, but this by-election has the traditional z-list political celebrity running. But rather than the traditional George Galloway candidacy, this time it’s Dave Nellist, running under the TUSC banner.

Nellist’s greatest hits include:
  • Representing Coventry South East for Labour in the 80s
  • Supporting the Militant tendency so loudly he was deselected
  • Running for almost every General Election and local council election in his area since the late 70s, for a succession of leftist parties.
  • Sort of accidentally helping to create New Labour, his greatest enemy (he was office-mates with a first-term MP named Anthony Blair. They clashed so badly that Blair requested to be moved, ended up sharing with a young Scottish MP, Gordon Brown. The rest, as they say, is history)
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Torrain
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Posts: 3,869
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Political Matrix
E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« Reply #3 on: March 03, 2022, 08:26:16 PM »

When the Tories are managing expectations with lines like this:
Quote
Gary Sambrook: "Labour ought to win by 9,000 or this will be a bad night for them"
Labour are doing alright.
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Torrain
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Political Matrix
E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« Reply #4 on: March 03, 2022, 08:26:55 PM »

Full Results (incl. raw vote totals):

Paulette Hamilton (Lab) 9,413 (55.51%)
Robert Alden (C) 6,147 (36.25%)
Dave Nellist (TUSC) 360 (2.12%)
Jack Brookes (Reform) 293 (1.73%)
Siobhan Harper-Nunes (Green) 236 (1.39%)
Lee Dargue (LD) 173 (1.02%)
Michael Lutwyche (Ind) 109 (0.64%)
Mel Mbondiah (CPA) 79 (0.47%)
Thomas O’Rourke (Ind) 76 (0.45%)
SirNosDa The Good Knight (Loony) 49 (0.29%)
Clifton Holmes (Ind) 14 (0.08%)
David Bishop (BP Elvis) 8 (0.05%)

Lab maj 3,266 (19.26%)

Electorate 62,996; Turnout 16,957 (26.92%, -26.34%)
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Torrain
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Posts: 3,869
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Political Matrix
E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« Reply #5 on: March 03, 2022, 08:56:19 PM »

Inclined to agree - turnout is so low, and this election has far too many conflicting factors to be all that representative. (heavily pro-Leave seat, Labour incumbent, PartyGate, and whatever Ukraine is going to do to national polling - which is anyone’s guess)

Both parties will claim promising signals, and try to lay a claim to the seat at the next GE.
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Torrain
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Posts: 3,869
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Political Matrix
E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« Reply #6 on: March 04, 2022, 05:42:03 AM »


Having a party over getting 2% of the vote feels like peak hard-left energy.
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Torrain
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Posts: 3,869
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Political Matrix
E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« Reply #7 on: March 04, 2022, 08:37:37 AM »

Reform would probably benefit by branding themselves as UKIP 2. Not that they would do well these days, but at least people know what a "UKIp" is.

I think that REFUK have made a major strategic error with their rebrand. Their is a small but persistent constituency for a hard/populist right party (see UKIP, BNP etc), but it’s hard to corral them into any form of viable coalition without a primary issue.

Both UKIP and the Brexit Party literally ran as single issue parties, with the issue in their very name itself.

Unless there’s a biting desire for proportional representation of some weird anti-green movement on that part of the right, it’s hard to see what they’ll unite behind. Anti-lockdown restrictions were an animating factor for a little while, but that’s all gone now that Johnson has lifted the remaining restrictions.

So far, Richard Tice is trying to do most of those (PR, anti-net zero), but with a big focus on tax cuts and all while bragging about how buying Teslas (like he has) is the real way to deal with any ‘climate nonsense’.

He’s essentially trying to be a weird, GOP-lite, vaguely libertarian version of the Tories. I think Johnson would have to do a lot worse before they presented a threat, and in their current form they have next to nothing to offer Labour voters.

There’s a decent, if slightly too warm, write up of Tice’s aspirations in the Spectator: https://www.spectator.co.uk/article/road-to-reform-is-richard-tices-party-a-threat-to-the-tories/amp
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Torrain
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Posts: 3,869
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Political Matrix
E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« Reply #8 on: April 11, 2022, 10:33:41 AM »

Imran Khan has been found guilty, meaning a by-election in Wakefield is now all but inevitable.

However, unless Khan resigns, sentencing will need to take place, and appeals likely be exhausted, before such an election occurs. In the event, it’s hard not to see this as Labour’s best chance to pick up a Conservative, Red Wall seat this Parliament.
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Torrain
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Posts: 3,869
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Political Matrix
E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« Reply #9 on: April 14, 2022, 11:49:44 AM »
« Edited: April 14, 2022, 11:53:52 AM by Torrain »

It’s the first Tory-held Red Wall seat to go up for election since 2019, and a rare chance for a Labour pick-up.

For those playing the home game - Labour have had a historically bad run in by-elections since Brexit realigned the electorate, starting with the Tory gain in Copeland (former Labour heartland and mining area with big pro-Leave vote), under Theresa May. This by-election provides Labour with their first and best chance to flip the script before 2024.

Wakefield sits a short distance from Leeds in West Yorkshire, and was Labour-held for 90 years until 2019. Khan’s majority was only 3,358 votes, so expect a high profile contest.

Only a short time after a narrow margin in Batley and Spen (which borders Wakefield), saved his bacon, the trajectory of Keir Starmer’s leadership is once more going to be shaped by the whims of a few thousand voters in West Yorkshire.
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Torrain
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Posts: 3,869
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Political Matrix
E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« Reply #10 on: April 15, 2022, 04:21:18 PM »

It's a rather different sort of seat from Batley & Spen…
~snip~
Thanks for your incredibly detailed breakdown (far more than I could hope to provide!) - really good to get the raw data on the seat, and a ward breakdown of the area.

Do you have a prediction for the winner, and margin? I’ve got a couple of friends who live in Wakefield, but the problem with working in a Uni environment is that your entire sample group ends up being jaded lefties, and it’s very hard to escape that echo chamber (outside of invading the local “old man pub” and demanding their voting record and Brexit opinions…).
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Torrain
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Posts: 3,869
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Political Matrix
E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« Reply #11 on: April 24, 2022, 02:59:23 PM »

It would have been terrible for Labour if he had as the leadership speculation would have ensued immediately.
Not being an MP hasn’t stopped baseless leadership speculation before.
Old hands will remember Keir Starmer was being tipped as a future leader about 15 minutes after being elected as an MP for the first time...

Not to mention the leadership speculation that started during Johnson’s time out of Parliament as London Mayor.
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Torrain
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Posts: 3,869
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Political Matrix
E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« Reply #12 on: April 29, 2022, 07:23:16 AM »

Imran Khan has finally submitted his resignation - effective April 30th (which, coincidentally allows him to claim a full months pay for his final month in office).

The writ for a by-election won’t be moved before the prorogation, and the internal estimate is that it won’t happen until late June. Fascinating to think that the landscape could be entirely different then…
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Torrain
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Posts: 3,869
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Political Matrix
E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« Reply #13 on: April 30, 2022, 08:51:05 AM »

Well here's another one. Will the circumstances of the resignation hurt the tories hopes of holding it ?

https://twitter.com/BBCBreaking/status/1520375657573892096

It’s a pretty safe Tory seat - i.e majority over 20,000 since 2015. The closest it’s been was a 2,000 vote majority over the Lib Dems in 1997. Labour are typically in second place, since 2015 at least, but the centre-left vote gets pretty badly split.

There is a world where the Conservatives lose the seat, but based on the past few cycles, the Lib Dems would have to stand back, Labour would have to run a strong candidate, and there would have to be significant apathy amongst Conservative voters.

Labour, and Starmer, will most likely be focusing their fire (and funds) on Wakefield at the time, but if they were to win here, it would be quite significant.

It’s actually numerically pretty close to North Shropshire, the seat of Owen Paterson that fell to the Lib Dems (majority of 2,000 in 1997, majority north of 20K over the past decade). Time will tell whether that wild result could be replicated here.
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Torrain
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Posts: 3,869
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Political Matrix
E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« Reply #14 on: April 30, 2022, 09:04:26 AM »

It’s a pretty safe Tory seat - i.e majority over 20,000 since 2015. The closest it’s been was a 2,000 vote majority over the Lib Dems in 1997. Labour are typically in second place, since 2015 at least, but the centre-left vote gets pretty badly split.

There is a world where the Conservatives lose the seat, but based on the past few cycles, the Lib Dems would have to stand back, Labour would have to run a strong candidate, and there would have to be significant apathy amongst Conservative voters.

Labour, and Starmer, will most likely be focusing their fire (and funds) on Wakefield at the time, but if they were to win here, it would be quite significant.

It’s actually numerically pretty close to North Shropshire, the seat of Owen Paterson that fell to the Lib Dems (majority of 2,000 in 1997, majority north of 20K over the past decade). Time will tell whether that wild result could be replicated here.

I think this is another of the sort of seat where Labour may have been second in recent elections, but they can't win, will know this, and will leave it to the Lib Dems, especially as Labour will focus on Wakefield.

That’s fair - my assumption was that given Labour’s better performance here recently they might be the natural fire, but letting the Lib Dems fight here while they go for Wakefield is probably a more sound strategy for both parties (and allow both time and resources to be used more effectively - fighting one by-election each while the Conservatives burn time and money defending both).

It is after all the sort of rural agricultural seat that used to flirt with the Lib Dems, before they receded into their current state.
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Torrain
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Posts: 3,869
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Political Matrix
E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« Reply #15 on: May 17, 2022, 07:47:56 AM »

I wonder if the date of 23 June holds any kind of symbolic significance that the Tories could desperately point to...

Ah - that’s both the day the EU referendum was held, and the date Johnson announced a significant rollback of COVID restrictions in 2020. You think they’d really try and pull the Farage “Freedom/Independence Day” card?

They really would have to be desperate…
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Torrain
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Political Matrix
E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« Reply #16 on: May 21, 2022, 06:13:30 AM »

The Lib Dems have selected Richard Foord as their candidate for Tiverton & Honiton.  He lives in Uffculme, in the constituency, has an army background and stood for the party in North Somerset in 2017.

The Tories haven't announced their candidate yet.

Ofc because he’s a Lib Dem he was also a Major and part of the UN peacekeeping forces- he looks rather like the type of candidates the Tories use to cast.

He was pictured in front of a cow (subtle!) in the Telegraph but unsure if he’s a farmer too. Then again I don’t know if farming is simply a part of the constituency or the type of seat where every hustings has questions about milk quotas, grain prices and EU directive 1010192

I hadn't seen it until now. Man - this looks right out of CCHQ central casting. Put this image on a campaign leaflet, and I'd automatically assume Tory. Say what you will about Lib Dems, but their recruitment game is pretty good. From local GPs to this kind of thing, they seem to have a knack for decent seat-specific hires.

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Torrain
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Posts: 3,869
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Political Matrix
E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« Reply #17 on: May 26, 2022, 08:38:02 AM »

Pending a successful recall petition, it looks like we’re headed for that long awaited by-election in Leicester East…
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Torrain
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Political Matrix
E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« Reply #18 on: May 26, 2022, 10:17:52 AM »
« Edited: May 26, 2022, 10:22:28 AM by Torrain »

I need someone to confirm it but it seems her sentence has been reduced so she can’t be recalled…

You may be right…

Apparently it’s now a suspended jail sentence, and the recall petition specifically requires detention (under 12 months, as any more than that automatically triggers expulsion).

However, an MP who has been suspended from the Commons for more than 10 sitting days, or 14 days total, is also liable to being recalled. So if Parliament sanctions her (possibly with a by-election in mind), she could still be recalled.

Edit: I doubt she will resign on her own merit - given how she’s acted so far. Webbe is still posting on social media like a normal politician, even today, no mention of her case. But on all new posts, as of this afternoon, she’s disabled comments. She seems to be following the PM’s lead, and expecting to brazenly carry onI think it would take a credible threat of expulsion from Parliament to get her to resign at this point.
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Torrain
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Posts: 3,869
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Political Matrix
E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« Reply #19 on: May 29, 2022, 04:48:43 AM »

So, the by-elections seem to be going well for the Government…

Quote
Tiverton and Honiton by-election: Tory candidate ‘told not to speak to media because of fear of partygate questions’

But the former headteacher is said to have been told not to speak to press – because CCHQ think she will struggle to deal with questions about Boris Johnson’s lockdown lawbreaking.

One local Tory says that anger about Downing Street shindogs is now so widespread in the rural Devon constituency that it has been decided Ms Hurford’s best chance of victory is to remain largely silent and hope the party’s current 24,000 majority carries her to victory.

The result is that Ms Hurford has been all but invisible since being selected as the Tories’ candidate on Monday. Requests to speak to her by The Independent went firstly unanswered and were then declined with no reason given.

The order for silence is said to have even been extended to local Conservative councillors who have been informally told not to discuss the by-election with media.

Asked in a WhatsApp message if such an instruction had been given, one councillor Colin Slade replied: “I couldn’t possibly comment!”

Source: https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/tiverton-honiton-byelection-ben-bradshaw-b2088792.html
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Torrain
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Posts: 3,869
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Political Matrix
E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« Reply #20 on: June 09, 2022, 03:31:43 AM »

Alok Sharma is pushing to get a high-level climate change role at the UN.

Thought it was worth posting, because his seat, Reading West, is pretty marginal. He won it by just above 4,000 in 2019, and around 2,800 in 2017. The seat was Labour from 1997-2010, and Tory before that. Classic bellwether.

Genuine pick-up opportunity for Labour if he goes, and some bad press for the government if they were to lose the seat of a cabinet member.
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Torrain
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Political Matrix
E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« Reply #21 on: June 09, 2022, 05:22:53 AM »


His majority is so narrow that the 2019 Lab/Lib Dem votes outnumber his. This by-election should be a Labour coronation.

Indeed - universal swing alone would hand Labour the seat under current polling. Add the renewed interest in tactical voting we’ve seen, and the Tories would be completely scunnered here.
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Torrain
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Political Matrix
E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« Reply #22 on: June 18, 2022, 04:03:30 AM »

Helen Hurford appeared at the Tiverton and Honiton hustings last night. She tried to spin a question about Johnson’s character into a list of successes (vaccine rollout, Ukraine), and was roundly jeered.

A hustings may not be a representative sample of the populace, but man, that was the kind of hostile anti-Tory room you’d expect from Scottish politics, not Devon.


Apologies for the clickbait-looking link to the footage - the only non-paywalled video I could find was from Guido Fawkes.
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Torrain
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Political Matrix
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« Reply #23 on: June 22, 2022, 11:59:30 AM »


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Torrain
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Posts: 3,869
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Political Matrix
E: -1.42, S: -0.52

« Reply #24 on: June 22, 2022, 05:29:20 PM »
« Edited: June 22, 2022, 05:39:05 PM by Torrain »

Tory sources are now briefing that they expect to lose both by-elections, and that the margin will be closer in Wakefield than T&H, which I struggle to see. I guess we've seen stranger things in prior by-elections though.
https://www.ft.com/content/9d8b3793-7953-4f12-896e-9cb60069545a

Quote
One Tory strategist working on the two by-elections said the Liberal Democrats were on course to win Tiverton with a “substantial” majority and Labour would secure Wakefield, albeit by a smaller margin.

The strategist added the by-elections were prompted by scandals surrounding the incumbent Tory MPs and it was natural the party would lose. “Midterm governments also don’t win by-elections,” he said.
Feels blatantly dishonest to claim the government doesn't win midterm by-elections, when Labour haven't made a by-election gain in over a decade, and the Conservatives have made several, starting with Copeland, and ending with Hartlepool a year ago!
(For those of you playing the home game, the last time Labour picked up a seat in a by-election was when Louise Mensch resigned as MP for Corby in 2012, and before that you have to go back to 1997)

*

Labour seems to be trying to do their own expectation setting too:

Quote
“It’s going strong but we are very, very worried about complacency and turnout,” said one member of Sir Keir Starmer’s shadow cabinet. “Anything over [a majority of] 1,000 will be a huge achievement.”

But, as you'd expect, not everyone is toeing the party line:
Quote
Another shadow cabinet member said: “Anything less than a 5,000 majority bodes badly for winning back the red wall.”
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