Sunak Suffers Twin Election Blows in Effort to Revive Tory Hopes
Comment of the Day

July 21 2023

Commentary by Eoin Treacy

Sunak Suffers Twin Election Blows in Effort to Revive Tory Hopes

This article from Bloomberg may be of interest to subscribers. Here is a section:

Sunak and his team had downplayed their chances in the three special elections in very different districts, arguing that even winning one would represent a victory given governments are often given a kicking in mid-term votes. The prime minister is eyeing holding the next national vote in November 2024 to allow Britain’s ailing economy as much time as possible to recover, a person familiar with his thinking told Bloomberg. 

Economic data has begun to turn this week with a bigger-than-expected inflation drop, while figures published Friday show government borrowing undershot official forecasts — potentially giving Chancellor of the Exchequer Jeremy Hunt room for tax cuts.

The prime minister told reporters in Uxbridge the Conservatives will take encouragement from the result there, arguing it shows the outcome of the general election “is not a done deal.” 

Eoin Treacy's view

Byelections are more like referendums on the performance of the government. Holding a staunch conservative seat in the leafy suburbs of London is not a victory compared to the risk of losing the red wall Boris Johnson successfully enticed into the Conservative fold for the first time by appealing to their nationalism.

The Illegal Migration Act of 2023 was announced a couple of days ago and introduced today. It is a bald attempt to court the affections of the converts to the Conservative Party as both parties prepare for an election next year. 

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