Whatever you want to say about the other UK political parties in this year’s local elections, one thing is clear: the Conservative Party has lost – badly.
How many other times has a UK political party lost more than 1,000 council seats in a single election (1,058 in total)?
I’ll tell you, thanks to information from a lovely AI-powered search engine: None.
But that’s what happened on Thursday, May 4, 2023:
Awesome 24 hours
Now we go to work to stop more of cruel damaging Tory laws being enacted 💪🏼 https://t.co/TtwOxfd3Rz
— Carol Vorderman (@carolvorders) May 5, 2023
Tory leader and UK prime minister Rishi Sunak seemed remarkably unconcerned when he was interviewed about the extent of his party’s losses. Admittedly, at the time the full extent of those losses wasn’t known – but his decision to harp on about what the public wants him to do was also strange.
This is because of two reasons. Firstly, the local election results show quite clearly that the public doesn’t want its government to do what Sunak claimed; and secondly – as Peter Stefanovic explains below – his plans are b*ll*cks!
— Peter Stefanovic (@PeterStefanovi2) May 5, 2023
Those clever people who use local election results to project the result of the next general election have worked out that, if Thursday’s result was replicated, the Conservatives would suffer their second-worst defeat in history.
According to the prediction by Sky News,
the Tories would lose 127 MPs – dropping from 365 to 238.
This would be the lowest total for the Conservatives since the 198 seats it won in 2005.
That prediction, together with the solid result of Thursday’s poll, should be enough to eject Sunak from Downing Street, for the simple reason that it is clear he does not have the support of the voting public.
But he’s hanging on.
This Writer can only surmise that he is hoping the election result indicates that the public is not enamoured of Keir Starmer’s Labour Party either, and he has more than a year in which to try to regain the trust of the electorate.
He could also be hoping that the public won’t support independents and the Green Party at Westminster, polarising to the two main parties again. He may be mistaken in that!
But let’s be honest with ourselves: these are forlorn hopes.
Sunak doesn’t have the policies to win the public over, and his party doesn’t have the talent to replace him.
The best he can hope to do is limp on until he can’t put off a general election any longer (January 28, 2025 is the latest date available to him), and hope his government can do so much damage to the UK’s infrastructure by then that no incoming government will be able to sort out the mess.
Whichever Tory then replaces him will be able to claim that any such failure is the fault of the new party of government – not theirs – and hope to use that lie to win the following general election.
That’s UK politics for you. As far as the Tories are concerned, it isn’t about public service – it’s about holding on to power – or regaining it as soon as possible.
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