Wow what a night! (7.30am)

If you are just waking up, the news is the Conservatives are suffering losses, though they are not so far as great as some predicted. Labour is doing well in London having taken the former Tory strongholds of Wandsworth, Westminster and Barnet but not as well elsewhere.

The Lib Dems and Greens made gains at the expense of the bigger parties. And the Lib Dems have regained control of Hull! All the results so far are for councils in England. Scotland and Wales will begin counting shortly.

The leader of Hull’s Liberal Democrats Mike Ross told Radio 4 in the early hours: “It’s been a great night for the City of Hull.” It has been a great night for the Lib Dems too.

Just before 7.30am this morning, we had 257 seats, a gain of 57. In the New Statesman earlier in the week, Ben Walker predicted that Lib Dems would gain 41 seats in England at the best. We passed that benchmark before 5:00am.

Listening to excited and disappointed councillors through the night, it is clear that Partygate mattered. Boris Johnson’s antics had put Conservative voters off, staying away or some even voting against their party.

The phantom Lib Dem / Labour electoral pact came up several times overnight. Despite constant denials by Lib Dems and Labour, the Tories were keen to blame their weaknesses on collusion between their rivals. They continued even after the Hull result, which was a straight battle between the Lib Dems and Labour. If there had been a pact, then the Tories could still have won. But they couldn’t win because they have been weakened by a lying buffoon of a prime minister and a chancellor who is out of touch with anyone but the rich. And the malaise spreads through the cabinet. Only a few days ago, Environment Secretary George Eustice advised people to eat value foods if they were short of money. It was a cheap as chips remark that demonstrated the Conservatives have no understanding of the struggles that people face.

One of the surprises of the night, Tim Montgomerie, founder of Conservative Home, paid us an unexpected compliment on Radio 4. He said he is worried about Lib Dem gains. He described us as the bindweed of local politics. Once we get in, we are hard to get out! He obviously saw it as an insult but an appreciation of our tenaciousness may be seen as a compliment.

We will be reporting throughout the day and weekend here on Lib Dem Voice, including reporting media coverage. Suddenly, Lib Dems are in demand by national media.

* Andy Boddington is a Lib Dem councillor in Shropshire. He blogs at andybodders.co.uk. He is Thursday editor of Lib Dem Voice.

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8 Comments

  • Prehaps people are realising that a party whose members knowingly chose an unprincipled liar as their leader and our Prime Minister is morally bankrupt and unfit for elected office at any level.

  • Daniel Howitt 6th May '22 - 9:05am

    Has the public finally forgiven the Coalition years? Fingers crossed…. Hoping for some fabulous results from Scotland

  • I am afraid The New Stateman and Ben Walker always sell the Lib Dems short and for some reason push the Greens. It took them several weeks to wake up to the Lib Dem chances at North Shropshire although several of us kept telling them.
    Overall we are doing well but there is an awful long way to go before we can really shout out loud, so many, many areas of the country still remain barren for us, unlike the great days of 15-20 years ago.

  • John Roffey 6th May '22 - 12:34pm

    I am inclined to think that had the Party promoted the Climate Emergency and other environmental issues ahead of Party-gate – there would have been greater success.

    More to the point – it is an issue that will be in the forefront of many voters minds for the foreseeable future – particularly the young and new voters each year.

    Looks as if the Greens are going to reap this reward in future elections.

  • nigel hunter 6th May '22 - 1:34pm

    Yes climate emergency should be put on the list for future campaigning.The future belongs to the young,we need their support.
    Moaning over a LibDem ‘co-operation deal’? Have they conveniently forgotten the deal that was cooked up withFarage in 2019.Poor loosers.

  • Barry Lofty 8th May '22 - 9:14am

    Averting the threat of world war three and it’s nuclear implications should come before global warming for all generations.

  • John Roffey 8th May '22 - 5:12pm

    @Barry Lofty: “Averting the threat of world war three and it’s nuclear implications should come before global warming for all generations.”

    Although, at first sight, it seems sensible to be more concerned about the threat of WW3 than global warming – however, how can this threat be avoided?

    In truth, it is only one of the superpowers that can start such a war and this is extremely unlikely from a, more or less, functioning democracy like the US. This reduces the possibilities to Russia and China and since it appears that China is succeeding with its reliance on its ‘Magic Weapon’ program in its quest for world domination – they can be discounted.

    It therefore requires that Putin, or someone of similar ilk, does not become President of Russia – this seems an impossible task for we in the West to achieve.

    In contrast, by focussing on the Climate Emergency, the IPCC is likely hoping that the dangers of reaching a ‘Tipping Point’ – after which preventable action is no longer possible and the majority of species on Earth [including we humans] will be no more.

  • David Evans 8th May '22 - 10:18pm

    John, while you say “In truth, it is only one of the superpowers that can start such a war” and then discount the US (almost certainly correctly) but then you also discount China, whose military might is now second only to the US (and probably only just second now) and massive GDP and global ambitions to go with it. I wouldn’t discount Taiwan Kicking off if we fail to defend Ukraine.

    However, Russia is the massive threat right now. How to stop that war without somehow rewarding Putin for starting it which would only further embolden him and his successors? That is a massive problem. Unless of course we remain totally content with allowing the Ukrainians to fight it on our behalf.

    Also North Korea, with lots of plausible deniability for itself and China now it seems to have SLBMs as well.

    Finally consider the Carbon Footprint of the War, both in terms of energy expended on Weapons etc plus the need to rebuild so much housing etc to restore Ukraine. Probably of a similar order of magnitude to the entire Carbon footprint of the whole of the EU!

    War is probably the biggest Green issue we have right now.

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