In the wake of the first Labour local council victory in Medway since 1998, I draw some post-election consequences for the Lib Dems, Greens, SNP, Labour and Conservatives. Undoubtedly, this was a disaster for the Tories and Brexit in terms of what was predicted. The Tories lost 1061 local council seats. The question is, is this enough to get the Tories done and Brexit undone?
My part in the Tories’ decline
At a personal level, I was delighted to play my part in the Tories’ decline in Medway, through long term campaigning, mass Brexorcisms in pubs, cafes, supermarkets, bus stops etc., and doorstepping in Tory voting areas over the last few weeks. My family loaned 8 votes from my family to Labour last week and some to the Lib Dems and Greens. However, we shall not repeat this performance in a General Election, unless Labour turn on Brexit and Europe. I have put their Councillors on notice to this effect.
My Tory MP Rehman Chishti became so desperate about the decline in his party’s fortunes that he decided to attack Suella Braverman about her recent demonisation of Pakistani Muslims in The Observer. This is significant, in so far as Mr Chishti has an impeccable record in voting with the prevailing cabinet. His unbridled attacks appear to have sprung from sheer desperation and a desire to pick up the Pakistani vote in my area rather than any serious conviction that Braverman is an evil spirit who was herself an immigrant. He failed. Given that the Tories have a stronghold in my area, I plan to stand an independent candidate in Gillingham and Rainham and need your help to do this NOW. Please click on the link below and back us.
Lib Dem renaissance
Perhaps the story less covered in the mainstream media is that of the Lib Dems renaissance in last week’s elections. The Conservatives losses were fairly evenly distributed between Labour and the Lib Dems, with the Greens taking a very good proportion of votes as well. If this were to continue, the Lib Dems could find themselves as Kingmakers in a General Election along with the SNP. The Tories and Labour like the binary system which both believe they profit from. But we could find ourselves in a rainbow coalition in 2024. A lot can happen between now and then. Coalitions mean that politicians have to do things they really don’t like doing : listening to opposing views ; coming up with better decisions ; occasional compromises and so on. It’s all good with me. The people may just be the net winners in such a system … ?
The Green party cleaned up, gaining a very respectable 241 seats in England and taking control of one Council in Brexity Mid Suffolk completely. Increasing awareness of sewage, climate catastrophe and possibly a protest vote against the far right parties aka Tories and UKIP may all have contributed to this. Let’s hope this continues into a General Election. Check our film out, based on our music composition ‘How do we want to be remembered‘.
Sunak is under pressure from the ERG to go further right with his policies. As a holding statement on The BBC on Friday, Sunakered simply repeated his five priorities. He claims that people who cannot afford to eat were more interested in stopping the boats. Even James O’Brien is not sure what Sunak means by lurching to the far right. O’Brien frivolously suggested on LBC that it might involve bringing back the birch. I’d add bear bating, the rack and the drowning of witches, to take us back fully to Jacob Rees-Mogg’s 18th Century Brexit idyll.
I called James to discuss Sunak’s options. Paradoxically, I suggested that Sunak would be better advised to move towards the centre ground of politics to pull the Swordaunt from the stone. James and I riffed away to my catchphrase ‘Sunackered’, which I coined in the summer of 2022. James said that Sunackered (or Sunakered) is worthy of a Daily Mail headline ‘if some guy wasn’t going to wear his mum’s hat and sit on a chair on Saturday’. Listen into to our riotous dialogue at LBC James O’Brien. #Sunackered is trending on Twitter as I write this.
Early indications suggest that Rishi Sunakered listened to my advice on LBC. Yesterday, Kemi Bad Enoch Powell announced that the Government has rowed back on its promise to have a bonfire of EU laws, 98% of which British politicians helped to make! Unusually, Jacob Rees-Mogg has called Sunak out as a traitor. Bad Enoch was sanctioned by TWFKASLH (The worm formerly known as Sir Lyndsay Hoyle) yesterday. Hoyle is a man who has allowed all sorts of bad behaviour to pass in the House of Commons but decided that enough was enough with the Nigerian Brexit fraudster. Mogg never calls the Government out. He even backs rapists. His outburst on the bonfire of EU law is clearly a smokescreen to get more than 20 Tory signatures on a letter to shaft Rich Tea Sunakered. I confidently predict that the approx 600 laws to be incinerated will be the ones with no large scale impact or connectivity to the main body of EU law. In other words, it will look as if we have taken back control of our laws, but, in reality, nothing will have changed, unless you indulge in some arcane Brexity manufacturing processes. For example, making car engines from English oak, impact-destructing cricket bats or pepper grinders without holes. Otto English sums up one of the many contradictions:
And, once again, the ERG are fighting like cats in a sack. Andrew Bridgen has split the fascist parties by joining Lozza Fox’s Reshame party instead of Ricardo Tice’s Rebjorn Again party. It’s all good. Rishi is doing exactly what I predicted in order to save the Tory party from Brexit oblivion. Next he will steal Keir Starmer’s clothes, see Hard Labour. Perhaps Rishi is not Sunakered after all?
In his weakened state, Sunak now needs some scapegoats. Given that the Select Committee has not yet reported on Boris Johnson’s multiple illegal, immoral and indecent behaviours, a convenient distraction would be for this committee to make a strong verdict against Johnson soon, such as full suspension from parliament. Accordingly, this would allow Sunak to blame the current malaise in the Conservative party on Johnson and Truss’ catastrophic mishandling of the country. It would also allow him to exorcise Johnson’s ghost without having to do anything himself. This is the way that Sunak likes to handle his HR decisions, through outsourcing to other agencies.
If Johnson is suspended for more than 10 days, The Rejoin Party have a plan to issue a recall petition to remove him from office and break the spaffer’s spell for good. Please join them in readiness.
The other big news about the election was voter id and voter suppression. For more on this read our full article on the subject. Early indications suggest that this will have disadvantaged specific demographic areas, such as ethnic minorities, the disabled and young people. The Government now runs the Electoral Commission and they decided not to record any data from polling stations. Correspondingly, it is quite likely that there is serious under-reporting on the extent of voter suppression in these elections. Edwin Hayward reports on over 70 case studies of voter suppression. They are almost certainly the very small tip of a very large electoral fraud iceberg.
These elections have demonstrated that the voter id system is totally unfit for purpose. I made my own small protest to the Electoral Commission. Above all else, please make your voice heard. Add your name to the call for action at electoral reform.
The Scottish position
Although the local elections are a hammer blow for the Tories, they are not catastrophic. Labour needed to reach the magic number of 40% vote share in these elections to win a General Election outright. They won approximately 35%. This explains why Labour want to take 30 seats in Scotland. I predict an informal coalition of aggression between Labour and Conservative to viciously attack the SNP on any agenda and exploit the change of leadership. Admittedly, the SNP’s transition could have been smoother. However, I believe we will see some very bad behaviour from both Labour and Conservatives in the coming weeks and months. They must be dealt with accordingly.
That said, the SNP’s problems are temporary. The essence of SNP support and the values underpinning them will be largely unchanged by a few sensational tabloid headlines in the longer term. For comparison, I note that Boris Johnson’s many breaches of the law did not attract police tents in his garden and officers in fancy dress Hazmat suits. Added to this, Brexit delivers a daily stream of bad news, both in the short, medium and long term. Robert Peston reported that 86% of young people wish to rejoin the EU. In consequence, Starmer’s position on Brexit is ultimately untenable. I reported on Labour’s position on Brexit in the previous article “Hard Labour“. If Labour’s results are not good enough to win a General Election outright, a hung parliament still seems a likely outcome of the current optimism about the local elections.