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4179
24 May 2024, 3:04 pm
(24 May 2024, 9:40 am)Adrian They're not winning votes, though. If you look at all the Parliamentary by-election results recently, they're not winning seats because they're increasing the number of people voting Labour. They're winning them because Tory voters aren't turning out. So for all intents and purposes, their lunge to the right has been futile so far. 

I'd say that's largely down to the leader, who is a wind-sock, and it's why his messaging of "Country first, Party second" doesn't work. It's well-publicised that he's broken every promise he's made. So much so that he doesn't call them promises anymore. He continues to put wet-wipe ministers on the media rounds, who get caught out every time they're questioned on a particular policy, and then immediately resort to the hyperbole about Labour being 'a changed party'

I also don't think it's fair to suggest that it's only the far-right or far-left who see the Conservatives and Labour as broadly comparable. That's not the message we received on the doorstep during the May campaigning. A lot of swing-voters would sooner not bother, than take a chance on what Starmer has to offer. One common criticism was that people felt he was untrustworthy. 

It's not even during campaigning that you hear this. I work with several different workplaces, and whenever I speak to people, it's clear that a lot of people in this country are genuinely fed up and feel left behind after 14 years of Tory Government. They should be looking towards a Labour Party for hope and change, but Starmer refuses to commit to any of that. 

Not even something as simple to fix as removing the two-child benefit cap, which would pull an estimated 250,000 children out of poverty overnight. Or the 'New Deal for Workers', most of which wouldn't cost a penny, but would massively benefit workers. Is that putting the Country first?

Will I be delighted to see the back of the Tories? Absolutely! But I've no enthusiasm about the thought of a Starmer Labour Government either. Maybe five years will convince me, maybe it won't.

For clarity I don't think this version of Labour is perfect, far from it. There are a number of things that I hope they commit to doing at some stage that they haven't yet, and there are some stances which I disagree with. 

That said, onto your post:

In fairness by-election turnout is always lower than turnout in a General Election. Admittedly even these are lower than the average of 50.2%, but I don't think you can say Labour are only winning them because the Tory vote isn't going out. 

How can you already say his messaging of "Country First, Party Second" doesn't work? They're miles ahead in the opinion polls, and the response I've seen to that messaging on social media from people who aren't on the far left/right is pretty positive. 

In terms of the 'wet-wipe' ministers, are you including people like Darren Jones in that? He deals fantastically well with interviews, and from what I've seen answers honestly when he doesn't know the answer rather than resorting to waffle. I can't find the clip now, but I saw a video the other day where he was asked about voter ID and he essentially had to pass and apologised for that, but was sent a text with the answer and delivered that later on. 

In terms of the promises being broken, while I'm not condoning that, there needs to be some pragmatism. The country now is in a far worse place even when compared to when Starmer was elected leader of Labour. It would be foolish to continue full steam ahead with policies that financially may no longer be achievable, and it would be another tool for the media to attack them with in the run up to the election. 

I agree that I'd much prefer to be excited to vote in a Labour who are promising huge changes for the country, and I think in any other election we'd need to see more of that. This election is massively different and, if they play their cards right and appeal to people who would usually vote Conservative (which includes not being too bold, I think), then it's a chance to absolutely decimate the Conservatives. 

To me this election is an opportunity to get decent people running the country again. You can't do anything when you're not in power, we haven't had a Labour government for 14 years, and look where the country is now. By pretty much every metric we are worse than how Labour left us in 2010 - that alone should point to the difference between the two parties.
mb134
24 May 2024, 3:04 pm #1341

(24 May 2024, 9:40 am)Adrian They're not winning votes, though. If you look at all the Parliamentary by-election results recently, they're not winning seats because they're increasing the number of people voting Labour. They're winning them because Tory voters aren't turning out. So for all intents and purposes, their lunge to the right has been futile so far. 

I'd say that's largely down to the leader, who is a wind-sock, and it's why his messaging of "Country first, Party second" doesn't work. It's well-publicised that he's broken every promise he's made. So much so that he doesn't call them promises anymore. He continues to put wet-wipe ministers on the media rounds, who get caught out every time they're questioned on a particular policy, and then immediately resort to the hyperbole about Labour being 'a changed party'

I also don't think it's fair to suggest that it's only the far-right or far-left who see the Conservatives and Labour as broadly comparable. That's not the message we received on the doorstep during the May campaigning. A lot of swing-voters would sooner not bother, than take a chance on what Starmer has to offer. One common criticism was that people felt he was untrustworthy. 

It's not even during campaigning that you hear this. I work with several different workplaces, and whenever I speak to people, it's clear that a lot of people in this country are genuinely fed up and feel left behind after 14 years of Tory Government. They should be looking towards a Labour Party for hope and change, but Starmer refuses to commit to any of that. 

Not even something as simple to fix as removing the two-child benefit cap, which would pull an estimated 250,000 children out of poverty overnight. Or the 'New Deal for Workers', most of which wouldn't cost a penny, but would massively benefit workers. Is that putting the Country first?

Will I be delighted to see the back of the Tories? Absolutely! But I've no enthusiasm about the thought of a Starmer Labour Government either. Maybe five years will convince me, maybe it won't.

For clarity I don't think this version of Labour is perfect, far from it. There are a number of things that I hope they commit to doing at some stage that they haven't yet, and there are some stances which I disagree with. 

That said, onto your post:

In fairness by-election turnout is always lower than turnout in a General Election. Admittedly even these are lower than the average of 50.2%, but I don't think you can say Labour are only winning them because the Tory vote isn't going out. 

How can you already say his messaging of "Country First, Party Second" doesn't work? They're miles ahead in the opinion polls, and the response I've seen to that messaging on social media from people who aren't on the far left/right is pretty positive. 

In terms of the 'wet-wipe' ministers, are you including people like Darren Jones in that? He deals fantastically well with interviews, and from what I've seen answers honestly when he doesn't know the answer rather than resorting to waffle. I can't find the clip now, but I saw a video the other day where he was asked about voter ID and he essentially had to pass and apologised for that, but was sent a text with the answer and delivered that later on. 

In terms of the promises being broken, while I'm not condoning that, there needs to be some pragmatism. The country now is in a far worse place even when compared to when Starmer was elected leader of Labour. It would be foolish to continue full steam ahead with policies that financially may no longer be achievable, and it would be another tool for the media to attack them with in the run up to the election. 

I agree that I'd much prefer to be excited to vote in a Labour who are promising huge changes for the country, and I think in any other election we'd need to see more of that. This election is massively different and, if they play their cards right and appeal to people who would usually vote Conservative (which includes not being too bold, I think), then it's a chance to absolutely decimate the Conservatives. 

To me this election is an opportunity to get decent people running the country again. You can't do anything when you're not in power, we haven't had a Labour government for 14 years, and look where the country is now. By pretty much every metric we are worse than how Labour left us in 2010 - that alone should point to the difference between the two parties.

24 May 2024, 6:20 pm
(24 May 2024, 3:04 pm)mb134 For clarity I don't think this version of Labour is perfect, far from it. There are a number of things that I hope they commit to doing at some stage that they haven't yet, and there are some stances which I disagree with. 

That said, onto your post:

In fairness by-election turnout is always lower than turnout in a General Election. Admittedly even these are lower than the average of 50.2%, but I don't think you can say Labour are only winning them because the Tory vote isn't going out. 

How can you already say his messaging of "Country First, Party Second" doesn't work? They're miles ahead in the opinion polls, and the response I've seen to that messaging on social media from people who aren't on the far left/right is pretty positive. 

In terms of the 'wet-wipe' ministers, are you including people like Darren Jones in that? He deals fantastically well with interviews, and from what I've seen answers honestly when he doesn't know the answer rather than resorting to waffle. I can't find the clip now, but I saw a video the other day where he was asked about voter ID and he essentially had to pass and apologised for that, but was sent a text with the answer and delivered that later on. 

In terms of the promises being broken, while I'm not condoning that, there needs to be some pragmatism. The country now is in a far worse place even when compared to when Starmer was elected leader of Labour. It would be foolish to continue full steam ahead with policies that financially may no longer be achievable, and it would be another tool for the media to attack them with in the run up to the election. 

I agree that I'd much prefer to be excited to vote in a Labour who are promising huge changes for the country, and I think in any other election we'd need to see more of that. This election is massively different and, if they play their cards right and appeal to people who would usually vote Conservative (which includes not being too bold, I think), then it's a chance to absolutely decimate the Conservatives. 

To me this election is an opportunity to get decent people running the country again. You can't do anything when you're not in power, we haven't had a Labour government for 14 years, and look where the country is now. By pretty much every metric we are worse than how Labour left us in 2010 - that alone should point to the difference between the two parties.

They're not only winning by-elections because the Tory voters aren't turning out, but it's a big factor. The by election turnouts are down, as you suggest, and you'd think after 14 years of a Tory Government that people would be jumping at the chance to give them a kicking - and that's without taking into account the circumstances in which some of those by-elections took place. 

I appreciate a General Election is a different animal, but the Labour leadership should be extremely concerned. Starmer has spent a long time now pitching himself, even as far as the centre-right of the electorate, and as I said above, it's been futile so far. There's a decent piece here that's worth a read: https://www.theguardian.com/politics/202...ger-threat

I wouldn't place Darren Jones into that category personally, but he's a minority. I know the clip that you're referring to too. On the other hand, you've got Phillipson, Streeting, Ashworth, Reynolds, Dodds and Nandy, for example, where I'd have more faith sticking Ben Maxfield in front of the cameras or microphone. Lucy Powell would also be in that list, but thankfully they seem to keep her away from the media nowadays. 

I don't think you can read too much into the opinion polls, as much as I don't think that Social Media is a good litmus test. Labour were reportedly heading towards a landslide before the May local elections, but that's now being toned down to a modest majority or largest party prediction. I can only speak from my own experiences from working in a recent campaign and being in a job role that I get to talk about politics, and the messaging just isn't working. I do think a lot of that comes down to the untrustworthy perception.

Do you believe he'd fear the media attacking him over refusing to keep children in poverty? If so, then it doesn't really speak very highly of his leadership credentials! This isn't about nice to haves or splashing the cash. We're one of the wealthiest nations in the world, yet we have over 1/5 of the population below the poverty line. That is an absolute travesty and no Government should be ashamed of fixing that, whatever the cost. If you don't fix the problem, you're creating a bigger problem further down the line. Kids going to school hungry don't learn, and kids that don't learn rarely go on to fill skilled jobs that are desperately needed.

It should never be something to shy away from fixing. It's basic economics that the more money citizens have, the more they spend it in the economy, which then feeds suppliers/services, creates jobs and increases tax receipts.

Scrapping the Green New Deal £28bn pledge was also a massive mistake. It should have been the stand-out policy going into a General Election, showing the Party had a real plan for the future. It's instead become another can to kick down the road for someone else to sort.

The 'far worse place' slogan is being banded about a lot at the minute, but it's also why people don't believe there's a real difference between the Conservatives and the Labour Party. Am I expected to vote whether I prefer austerity in a shade of blue or a shade of red? It's a nonsense, and whilst I don't think a Government should blow money left, right and centre, I do think a 'Government in waiting' should be prepared to be bold. The GND may be seen as an expensive example of that, but if done right, the long-term benefits would far outweigh the cost over the next Parliament. 

The New Deal for Workers was again bold, and something that I'd have advocated a Labour vote on, but it's been watered down that much that I'm not convinced they'll even deliver that. As I said above, most of that would have been at no cost, but huge long-term benefits. There's a lot of wealth in this Country, it just needs to be shared around.

I absolutely want the Tories out, but people should do that by voting whoever has the best chance of beating them in their Constituency.

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Adrian
24 May 2024, 6:20 pm #1342

(24 May 2024, 3:04 pm)mb134 For clarity I don't think this version of Labour is perfect, far from it. There are a number of things that I hope they commit to doing at some stage that they haven't yet, and there are some stances which I disagree with. 

That said, onto your post:

In fairness by-election turnout is always lower than turnout in a General Election. Admittedly even these are lower than the average of 50.2%, but I don't think you can say Labour are only winning them because the Tory vote isn't going out. 

How can you already say his messaging of "Country First, Party Second" doesn't work? They're miles ahead in the opinion polls, and the response I've seen to that messaging on social media from people who aren't on the far left/right is pretty positive. 

In terms of the 'wet-wipe' ministers, are you including people like Darren Jones in that? He deals fantastically well with interviews, and from what I've seen answers honestly when he doesn't know the answer rather than resorting to waffle. I can't find the clip now, but I saw a video the other day where he was asked about voter ID and he essentially had to pass and apologised for that, but was sent a text with the answer and delivered that later on. 

In terms of the promises being broken, while I'm not condoning that, there needs to be some pragmatism. The country now is in a far worse place even when compared to when Starmer was elected leader of Labour. It would be foolish to continue full steam ahead with policies that financially may no longer be achievable, and it would be another tool for the media to attack them with in the run up to the election. 

I agree that I'd much prefer to be excited to vote in a Labour who are promising huge changes for the country, and I think in any other election we'd need to see more of that. This election is massively different and, if they play their cards right and appeal to people who would usually vote Conservative (which includes not being too bold, I think), then it's a chance to absolutely decimate the Conservatives. 

To me this election is an opportunity to get decent people running the country again. You can't do anything when you're not in power, we haven't had a Labour government for 14 years, and look where the country is now. By pretty much every metric we are worse than how Labour left us in 2010 - that alone should point to the difference between the two parties.

They're not only winning by-elections because the Tory voters aren't turning out, but it's a big factor. The by election turnouts are down, as you suggest, and you'd think after 14 years of a Tory Government that people would be jumping at the chance to give them a kicking - and that's without taking into account the circumstances in which some of those by-elections took place. 

I appreciate a General Election is a different animal, but the Labour leadership should be extremely concerned. Starmer has spent a long time now pitching himself, even as far as the centre-right of the electorate, and as I said above, it's been futile so far. There's a decent piece here that's worth a read: https://www.theguardian.com/politics/202...ger-threat

I wouldn't place Darren Jones into that category personally, but he's a minority. I know the clip that you're referring to too. On the other hand, you've got Phillipson, Streeting, Ashworth, Reynolds, Dodds and Nandy, for example, where I'd have more faith sticking Ben Maxfield in front of the cameras or microphone. Lucy Powell would also be in that list, but thankfully they seem to keep her away from the media nowadays. 

I don't think you can read too much into the opinion polls, as much as I don't think that Social Media is a good litmus test. Labour were reportedly heading towards a landslide before the May local elections, but that's now being toned down to a modest majority or largest party prediction. I can only speak from my own experiences from working in a recent campaign and being in a job role that I get to talk about politics, and the messaging just isn't working. I do think a lot of that comes down to the untrustworthy perception.

Do you believe he'd fear the media attacking him over refusing to keep children in poverty? If so, then it doesn't really speak very highly of his leadership credentials! This isn't about nice to haves or splashing the cash. We're one of the wealthiest nations in the world, yet we have over 1/5 of the population below the poverty line. That is an absolute travesty and no Government should be ashamed of fixing that, whatever the cost. If you don't fix the problem, you're creating a bigger problem further down the line. Kids going to school hungry don't learn, and kids that don't learn rarely go on to fill skilled jobs that are desperately needed.

It should never be something to shy away from fixing. It's basic economics that the more money citizens have, the more they spend it in the economy, which then feeds suppliers/services, creates jobs and increases tax receipts.

Scrapping the Green New Deal £28bn pledge was also a massive mistake. It should have been the stand-out policy going into a General Election, showing the Party had a real plan for the future. It's instead become another can to kick down the road for someone else to sort.

The 'far worse place' slogan is being banded about a lot at the minute, but it's also why people don't believe there's a real difference between the Conservatives and the Labour Party. Am I expected to vote whether I prefer austerity in a shade of blue or a shade of red? It's a nonsense, and whilst I don't think a Government should blow money left, right and centre, I do think a 'Government in waiting' should be prepared to be bold. The GND may be seen as an expensive example of that, but if done right, the long-term benefits would far outweigh the cost over the next Parliament. 

The New Deal for Workers was again bold, and something that I'd have advocated a Labour vote on, but it's been watered down that much that I'm not convinced they'll even deliver that. As I said above, most of that would have been at no cost, but huge long-term benefits. There's a lot of wealth in this Country, it just needs to be shared around.

I absolutely want the Tories out, but people should do that by voting whoever has the best chance of beating them in their Constituency.


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4707
24 May 2024, 10:26 pm
(24 May 2024, 10:33 am)Adrian For reference to my by-election point.

Blackpool South - CON to LAB
2024: 10,825 (58.9%) LAB, 3,218 (17.5%) CON - 32.5% turnout
2019: 12,557 (38.3%) LAB, 16,247 (49.6%) CON - 56.8% turnout
Labour vote down 1,732

Rochdale - LAB to WPB
2024: 2,402 (7.7%) LAB, 3,731 (12.0%) CON, 12,335 (39.7%) WPB - 39.7% turnout
2019: 24,475 (51.6%) LAB, 14,807 (31.2%) CON, No WPB - 60.1% turnout
Labour vote down 22,073

Kingswood - CON to LAB
2024: 11,176 (44.9%) LAB, 8,675 (34.9%) CON - 37.1% turnout
2019: 16,492 (33.4%) LAB, 27,712 (56.2%) CON - 71.5% turnout
Labour vote down 5,316

Wellingborough - CON to LAB
2024: 13,844 (45.9%) LAB, 7,408 (24.6%) CON - 38.0% turnout
2019: 13,737 (26.5%) LAB, 32,277 (62.2%) CON - 64.3% turnout
Labour vote down 6,329

Tamworth - CON to LAB
2023: 11,719 (45.8%) LAB, 10,403 (40.7%) CON - 35.9% turnout
2019: 10,908 (23.7%) LAB, 30,542 (66.3%) CON - 64.3% turnout
Labour vote up by 811.

Mid Beds - CON to LAB
2023: 13,872 (34.1%) LAB, 12,680 (31.1%) CON - 44.1% turnout
2019: 14,028 (21.7%) LAB, 38,692 (59.8%) CON - 73.7% turnout
Labour vote down by 156

I'm not sure that's a fair comparison, by-elections always have a lower turnout so it's hard to say that it's the Tories not turning up. It's likely the Labour voters aren't turning up either as they're a waste of time at the end of the day.

Personally I'd say the vast majority of swing voters just want the Tories out as they're awful. Labour could put a monkey in charge right now and most would vote for them because the Tories are done with a fair chunk jumping a sinking ship, hence the likes of Gove are 'retiring'.

The bigger challenge is in 5 years time, as I agree Starmer is a bit dull, and if nothing really changes and the Tories seriously get their house in order (and head more central) then they could be in big trouble as there's a lot of people voting Labour because the Tories are bad, rather than voting Labour because they're good. Whatever people's thoughts on them but the Tories badly need the likes of Rory Stewart back in the party vs the loons like Braverman.
Storx
24 May 2024, 10:26 pm #1343

(24 May 2024, 10:33 am)Adrian For reference to my by-election point.

Blackpool South - CON to LAB
2024: 10,825 (58.9%) LAB, 3,218 (17.5%) CON - 32.5% turnout
2019: 12,557 (38.3%) LAB, 16,247 (49.6%) CON - 56.8% turnout
Labour vote down 1,732

Rochdale - LAB to WPB
2024: 2,402 (7.7%) LAB, 3,731 (12.0%) CON, 12,335 (39.7%) WPB - 39.7% turnout
2019: 24,475 (51.6%) LAB, 14,807 (31.2%) CON, No WPB - 60.1% turnout
Labour vote down 22,073

Kingswood - CON to LAB
2024: 11,176 (44.9%) LAB, 8,675 (34.9%) CON - 37.1% turnout
2019: 16,492 (33.4%) LAB, 27,712 (56.2%) CON - 71.5% turnout
Labour vote down 5,316

Wellingborough - CON to LAB
2024: 13,844 (45.9%) LAB, 7,408 (24.6%) CON - 38.0% turnout
2019: 13,737 (26.5%) LAB, 32,277 (62.2%) CON - 64.3% turnout
Labour vote down 6,329

Tamworth - CON to LAB
2023: 11,719 (45.8%) LAB, 10,403 (40.7%) CON - 35.9% turnout
2019: 10,908 (23.7%) LAB, 30,542 (66.3%) CON - 64.3% turnout
Labour vote up by 811.

Mid Beds - CON to LAB
2023: 13,872 (34.1%) LAB, 12,680 (31.1%) CON - 44.1% turnout
2019: 14,028 (21.7%) LAB, 38,692 (59.8%) CON - 73.7% turnout
Labour vote down by 156

I'm not sure that's a fair comparison, by-elections always have a lower turnout so it's hard to say that it's the Tories not turning up. It's likely the Labour voters aren't turning up either as they're a waste of time at the end of the day.

Personally I'd say the vast majority of swing voters just want the Tories out as they're awful. Labour could put a monkey in charge right now and most would vote for them because the Tories are done with a fair chunk jumping a sinking ship, hence the likes of Gove are 'retiring'.

The bigger challenge is in 5 years time, as I agree Starmer is a bit dull, and if nothing really changes and the Tories seriously get their house in order (and head more central) then they could be in big trouble as there's a lot of people voting Labour because the Tories are bad, rather than voting Labour because they're good. Whatever people's thoughts on them but the Tories badly need the likes of Rory Stewart back in the party vs the loons like Braverman.

25 May 2024, 6:52 am
I have seen polls suggesting the Tories being wiped out from the North East, with even Hexham going Labour.

I doubt the Labour majority will be much above 70, and that the Tories will retain around 200 seats. This is because, even if there is a similar interest to getting rid of the Tories to 1997, Labour are not as popular under Kier Starmer now as under Tony Blair in 1997. Even the LibDem leader, Ed Davey, is at best uncharismatic and at worst tainted by the coalition, unlike Paddy Ashdown in 1997.

Of the current LibDem MPs, 4 have won by-elections and 11 were elected in 2019. Only 3 of these were MPs during the coalition years, and it is ironic that it is 1 of these 3 who is leader. I think their prospects would have been better had they chosen Layla Moran as leader.
MetrolineGA1511
25 May 2024, 6:52 am #1344

I have seen polls suggesting the Tories being wiped out from the North East, with even Hexham going Labour.

I doubt the Labour majority will be much above 70, and that the Tories will retain around 200 seats. This is because, even if there is a similar interest to getting rid of the Tories to 1997, Labour are not as popular under Kier Starmer now as under Tony Blair in 1997. Even the LibDem leader, Ed Davey, is at best uncharismatic and at worst tainted by the coalition, unlike Paddy Ashdown in 1997.

Of the current LibDem MPs, 4 have won by-elections and 11 were elected in 2019. Only 3 of these were MPs during the coalition years, and it is ironic that it is 1 of these 3 who is leader. I think their prospects would have been better had they chosen Layla Moran as leader.

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