Copeland defeat is Blair's fault, says Corbyn ally

Copeland defeat is Blair's fault, says Corbyn ally”

However, there have been signs of disillusionment among the grassroots in recent weeks, particularly after the Labour party leadership agreed to back the government's triggering of Article 50.

It was the first time the ruling party had won a seat off the opposition in a by-election since 1982 - and on that occasion the vote was split by the arrival of the Social Democratic Party.

While Labour won Thursday's Stoke-on-Trent Central by-election, its share of the vote fell by more than two per cent.

She failed to give Mr Corbyn her full support in a BBC Radio Cymru interview.

"I think it's been devastating".

That prompted Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell to boast: "We've turned back the tide, and I think we've defeated quite a unsafe form of politics". Andrew Gwynne, who was our MP in the campaign, was in Oldham as well when we won.

But the real fight to be the party of government remains between Labour and the Tories, who improved their vote share in both the Copeland and Stoke contests.

Corbyn told Sky News he was "very disappointed" by the result in Copeland, but insisted he will remain in charge. 'The big cities like Manchester and Liverpool feel very optimistic, ' she says.

S&D sources told that for the next two years, "We will provide them with information regarding the negotiations as they can not rely on the government".

Asked if the loss raised questions about Jeremy Corbyn's leadership, she said: "There will be a lot of discussion about every aspect of our party now and that will probably form a part of it". Or are there wider, more deeper reasons?

Jeremy Corbyn the leader of Britain's opposition Labour Party addresses a protest against the Trident nuclear missile system in London

"Word had got out that Jeremy was not in favour of nuclear power - that isn't true, that is what you call "fake news" and we were having great difficulty fighting that", said the shadow foreign secretary.

Copeland, in Cumbria, has a clear identity as a town that powers the rest of the United Kingdom, with 10,000 of its jobs reliant on the nuclear industry at Sellafield and a proposed plant to replace it, Moorside, which could provide up to 20,000 new jobs.

Afterwards, James simply said: "And there, in a nutshell is why they didn't win in Copeland". Both were the result of the sitting member of parliament deciding to take up a job outside politics, not something that often happens in parties seen as headed for power. Nuttall was second, with 25 percent of the vote, barely ahead of the Conservatives' 24 percent.

Corbyn himself dismissed the idea that he should stand down after Winnick said the Labour leader's "sense of duty" meant he should think of going before the 2020 general election.

In the case of Copeland for example, Labour MP Jamie Reed resigned from his office in December a year ago.

Corbyn-supporting MP Cat Smith told ITV: "To be 15-18 points behind in the polls and to push the Tories within 2000 votes is an incredible achievement". And Prime Minister May's dominance over British political life remains unchallenged. Instead, it is the wilful disregard of their own records, embodied in the entitled impunity of Lord Mandelson, that exposes the cynicism of the party's critics. That's quite clear, that must always been the case.

John Woodcock, the Labour MP for neighbouring Barrow and Furness, said the result was "a disaster". Labour once believed voters in Scotland would always stay loyal. And on nuclear, there's always been differently held views.

"The whole direction he and the people around him are taking the party in, is the problem - it's the whole crew".

In Copeland, it is retaining voters from the general election at a rate of 65 per cent - in the Oldham vote, that rate was around 80 per cent. She held on to the seat until 2010, when the constituency was abolished by boundary changes.

"There are always excuses you can make". People in communities right across this constituency have put their faith in me, a special sort of responsibility.

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