Media contact: Jen Pufky
Telephone: 07825 617 927
11.30 Friday 6 May 2016
Jonathan Carr-West, Chief Executive, Local Government Information Unit (LGiU) said:
“Given the profile of councils up for election this week, the big story was always going to be about Labour. However, it’s a mistake to use these elections purely as a barometer for Corbyn’s leadership.
It’s important to remember that local elections are not just, or even primarily, about national politics. Most Labour councils have very different politics from the national leadership. By virtue of their duty to balance the books they are more pragmatic in their approach to austerity and to public service reform.
As we’ve been hearing from our count correspondents throughout the night, if Labour losses are fewer than many predicted this is in no small part because people are delivering a verdict on Labour councils and not simply the national party.
Nonetheless, the losses coming through so far are significant, knowing that the last time these councils were elected Labour gained over 800 seats. Many Labour councils may feel they are now paying the price of Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership.”