More chunky swings from Labour to Lib Dem in by-elections

Five principal authority council by-elections this week and, hooray, a full set of Lib Dem candidates.

A pair of contests in Labour-held seats in London saw chunky swings to the Lib Dems in both:

Congratulations to Vikas Aggarwal and the team on moving up into second, overtaking the Greens.

Another good increase and swing from Labour for Paul Dennison and the team.

A big swing from the Conservatives too in another contest, this one caused by the new Mayor of Bedford standing down as a councillor:

Thomas Townsend was the Liberal Democrat candidate.

Elsewhere, it’s welcome to a new Lib Dem councillor:

Congratulations to Richard Crabb and the team.

That’s a Green gain from Labour. Thank you to Paul Radcliffe for ensuring the Lib Dems were on the ballot paper.

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 as it’s only those for which comprehensive results are available.

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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