Political

Lib Dems win Somerset by-election from Conservatives

One Parliamentary and eight council by-elections this week. As well as Birmingham veteran Lee Dargue in the Parliamentary election, there are seven Liberal Democrat candidates for those eight seats, which is up one on last time around. (Here’s why that is good news.)

Let’s kick off the results with a Liberal Democrat gain from the Conservatives:

Congratulations to Ray Buckler and the team! Especially as:

Next up, a ward with no Lib Dem last time:

Congratulations to Steven Donkin on such a strong second place from nowhere last time.

Thank you for Clare Coombe for being the Lib Dem candidate.

Congratulations to newly elected councillor, James Newport!

The new Liberal Democrat councillor here is Jim Cripps – congratulations!

Thank you to Tristan Bembridge for standing.

Congratulations to new councillor Sean Cullen.

And the Parliamentary by-election:

And finally, Halton Holegate, a Conservative gain from independents in a contest without a Lib Dem candidate:

Halton Holegate ward by election result

For what all this means for the running total of council by-election results since the last May elections, see my council by-elections scorecard here.

These by-election results round-ups cover principal authority by-elections. See my post The danger in celebrating parish and town council wins for your own party for the reasons to avoid straying too often into covering town, parish or community council by-elections.

Understanding the opinion polls

For understanding what is happening in politics, by-elections have the advantage of being real votes in real ballot boxes. But the opinion polls have the advantage of trying to be a representative sample of voters, not just those in the places that happen to have by-elections. To understand the polls properly – and what they do and don’t really tell us – see my book, Polling UnPacked: The History, Uses and Abuses of Political Opinion Polls.

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2 responses to “Lib Dems win Somerset by-election from Conservatives”

  1. interesting point: for all those results except Hythe West, the winner was a true winner having gained in excess of 50% of the votes cast.. with a low turnout that must suggest a lot of work by campaigners on getting the vote out..

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