Sunak’s Struggle: Poor Election Results but No Sign of Rebellion

Bleak picture for Sunak

The recent elections have produced a lot of noise, numbers, and sleepless nights for many. Although there are still more results to come this weekend, let’s examine the current situation.

The Conservative Party has been experiencing dismal election results, which are becoming a concerning pattern. This includes last year’s local elections, several by-elections, and now the latest elections. The outlook for Rishi Sunak remains consistently gloomy.

Sunak’s premiership had two main goals: stabilizing the government and reviving Conservative fortunes. While he succeeded in ending the chaos that marked Boris Johnson’s final months and Liz Truss’s brief tenure, he has failed to make the Conservatives popular again. Despite his passionate policy proposals, they seem to have little impact on his or the party’s standing.

In contrast, Labour has developed a newfound ability to win in key areas, which further darkens the Conservative mood. Previously, Labour amassed votes in areas they already won and struggled in areas they didn’t. This trend appears to be shifting.

Surprisingly, these poor results have not triggered a Conservative rebellion against Sunak. This is perhaps because the results, while grim, are not worse than expected. One senior figure described Conservative MPs as “remarkably chilled,” and a former cabinet minister labeled the results “not catastrophic,” although acknowledging they suggest a likely general election defeat.

Labour is confident that these results indicate they are on track to win a majority in the next general election. The Liberal Democrats and Reform UK see opportunities to capitalize on Conservative struggles, and the Green Party continues its steady rise in local politics.

In essence, these results maintain the status quo: a confident Labour Party, a dispirited Conservative Party, and optimistic smaller parties. However, Labour must perform exceptionally well by historical standards to win a general election, and this fact will shape the conversation leading up to the election.

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