Sir Keir Starmer suffers from electoral dysfunction, again

Sir Keir Starmer suffers from electoral dysfunction, again

Note: This article rightly chooses to ignore the Bristol South East by-election of 1961 due to the unique if not farcical situation of that by-election

Bad Leaders of the Opposition in the last 63 years such as Michael Foot and Jeremy Corbyn lost seats they held in by-elections to the governing party. Sir Keir Starmer joined that infamous list in 2021 but there was a lot of mitigation in that, that by-election took place in the midst of the vaccine bounce and the fact the seat would have been a Tory gain in 2019 but for Reform standing in the seat.

Last night’s by-election also has a lot of mitigation due to the situation to the Labour candidate having official support withdrawn although nobody predicted Labour to finish fourth, behind the Tories, and only 238. votes of the Lib Dems.

What this result does is confirm to me is that once in power the Starmer government will become rather unpopular rather quickly, what might save him is Tory stupidity such as electing Kemi Badenoch or Suella Braverman as Leader of the Opposition. The focus of the electorate is getting the Tories out which is what is driving Labour’s support.

Tories may also read the wrong things in to last night’s results. Their more bigoted elements may try and use more anti-Muslim hatred to win the election whilst I do not rule out more intellectually challenged Tories who will suggest that election will victory will be achieved if they try and make the general election about Gaza which would be courageous in the Yes, Prime Minister sense.

The majority of voters will cast their vote on the basis of the cost of living, the NHS, schools etc, not Palestine. It is also a flawed strategy as there is, thankfully, only one George Galloway, his reach will be limited during a general election campaign.


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