Friday, May 03, 2019

UK Election Map

Yesterday a number of local elections were held in England and Northern Ireland. Wrongly or rightly many people are today viewing the election results for local councils as a referendum on Brexit. The big headline news is that the Conservative Party, the main supporters of Brexit, have lost a huge number of voters since these council seats were last up for election. The Labour Party, who are prevaricating but still supporting some form of Brexit, also lost votes since the last election. The Liberal Party, the main Remain party, made the biggest gain in the number of seats in yesterday's election.

You can view the results in all councils using the BBC's Local Elections Map. On this map local councils are colored to show the winners in each council. You can also switch to view which councils have changed hands. Under the main interactive map are a number of static maps which show the councils where each of the parties have made gains and losses.

Among left of centre voters today there is a big clamour for the Labour Party to clearly declare support for another referendum on Brexit. The map above perhaps hints at why Labour is still not fully behind Remain. The map seems to show that Labour lost the most seats in areas that voted in the highest numbers for Brexit. This may suggest that they are losing the most voters among voters who want to leave the EU and not among people who want to Remain. It is important to note however that this map shows where Labour lost seats and not necessarily the areas where it lost the most votes.

The main problem for those who are keen to see these council elections purely as a referendum on Brexit is that despite their losses the Conservative and Labour Parties were still the political parties who won the most votes yesterday. It is also probably wisest to wait for the results of the EU elections on the 23rd May, which will probably give a much clearer sign of where the UK currently stands on Brexit.

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