Andrew Neil analyses the results of the Copeland and Stoke-on-Trent Central by-elections with journalists Rafael Behr and Cristina Odone.
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Hello and welcome to the Daily Politics.
Jeremy Corbyn enters his own winter as Copland lose the by-election to
the Conservatives. UKIP's leader Paul Nuttall failed
in his attempt to win the other seat up for grabs last night in Stoke -
despite a fall in Labour's We've got reaction and analysis
of last night's results. Also on today's programme -
we look at the prospects for power-sharing in Stormont
after the snap elections And is the drive to get more women
working in science putting unnecessary pressure on girls
at school? All that in the next hour
and with us for the whole of the programme today,
the Guardian's Rafael Behr, and Cristina Odone from
the Legatum Institute. So - it was a by-election night that
both Labour and UKIP In the Cumbrian constituency
of Copeland - held by Labour for eighty years -
Jeremy Corbyn's party suffered a historic defeat
to the Conservatives. The Conservative candidate,
Trudy Harrison, was elected Compared to the 2015 general
election, the Conservative share of the vote increased by 8% -
a huge achievement, given that governing parties normally
struggle in by-elections. Usually their share of the vote goes
down. In fact it's the first time
since 1982 that a governing party It was a different story for Labour
- their vote was down by 5% compared to 2015,
meaning that their candidate Third and fourth place went
to the Liberal Democrats The Lib Dem vote was up by 4%
while UKIP's vote fell by 9%. In Stoke the Labour candidate,
Gareth Snell, staved off the UKIP challenge -
winning the seat with 7,853 The Labour vote was
actually down 2% on 2015. The UKIP leader, Paul Nuttall,
came second with 5,233 votes. The UKIP vote was up by 2%,
but they were hoping for a much bigger swing in order
to win the seat. The Conservatives came
a very close third. Their candidate got just 79
fewer votes than UKIP. And in fourth place
we have the Liberal Democrats. Just like in Copeland, their vote
here in Stoke-on-Central went up, compared to the general
election in 2015. Jeremy Corbyn has been taking
questions from the media at an event in london this morning -
including our reporter Mark Lobel. REPORTER: Mr Corbyn,
is defeat in Copeland a disaster I've been talking to people
there this morning. We campaigned to win it back,
we campaigned to deliver for the people of Copeland
the health service Theresa May has not given any
guarantees whatsoever We can and we will,
and we will deliver an NHS for all. We are the party that founded
the NHS, we are the party that believes in health care free
at the point of use That was the Labour leader's
reaction. Speaking after the result
was announced in Stoke, the UKIP leader said
he was disappointed, but... This seat was number
72 on our hit list. There's a lot more
which will happen. We are not going anywhere,
I am not going anywhere. So therefore we move
on and our time will come. The Conservative Party Chairman,
Patrick McLoughlin, gave his reaction to the result
in Copeland this morning: Well, I think we've had a very good
candidate in Trudy Harrison who has been a superb candidate and now
Member of Parliament I think the leadership
which the Prime Minister has given since she's become Prime Minister,
and the clear way in which she said she wants to look at the issues
which face the United Kingdom For them to lose a seat
to the governing party, And that is a show of the way
in which the Labour Party is just out of contact
with what people are thinking. That is some of the reaction to last
night's two by-elections. In Westminster people are still trying
to come to terms with what it all means. Clearly a significant event
in British politics. We will do more of that in the next hour on the
Daily Politics give me your initial reaction to this. Copland and Stokes
are different seats. The one thing that overwhelmingly comes across if
you campaign to there is that Jeremy Corbyn, the leader of the Labour
Party, made it harder in Stoke. People felt they were lucky Paul
Nuttall threw away an opportunity, that he had a stronger chance at the
beginning of the campaign. Adding Copland, traditional Labour
supporters, were saying on the doorstep to campaigners, you are
insulting us with this man. -- and in Copeland. They said that he
doesn't appear to want it. Anybody who campaigned for Labour in either
of those seats will have come back under no illusions that the big
problem for the party is that they have a leader nobody will ever make
Prime Minister. Big implications for Labour. Conservatives delighted to
win Copeland. De Paul not all throw this away? Absolutely. -- did Paul
Nuttall. They were overwhelmingly in favour of Paul Nuttall there. They
wanted to show that even though Ukip at won the referendum they still
wanted to show they have something at its core. It wasn't forthcoming.
I think he lost it, really. Last night, a crisis for the Labour
Party. And Ukip. Certainly, people were saying, I spoke to people this
morning who said that at the beginning of February they were
worried Paul Nuttall would take the seat. But somebody described it as
an anti-UKIP firewall in Stoke and it stops them cutting through.
Christine is right, they are struggling to find a purpose.
Theresa May deserves credit for this. It takes somebody to win a
by-election as well as lose it. The fact people are expressing, whatever
it is they are expressing by voting Conservative, we are used to saying
there is this antiestablishment insurgency, well, hang on a moment,
the people are voting for the vicar's daughter and taking the seat
away from a Labour stronghold that it has been the years. Outside the
very wealthy, the Richmonds in Yorkshire, the shire areas, Copeland
is not one of those areas. It is an average income constituency. It has
problems of low pay, not naturally fertile Conservative territory. And
that is why I totally agree with you. It has been an extraordinary
victory. Not only for the Conservatives but for Theresa May. I
would not be surprised if this absolutely gives her the surge, the
kind of emboldening effect that come who knows, snap election? No, do you
think so? It is extraordinary. -- that, who knows. It is her style.
But they will be looking at the numbers in Westminster. If Jeremy
Corbyn stays he has a get out of jail free card. One Tory MPs said to
me last night that the longer Mr Corbyn remains lead at the Labour
Party, they thought the more damage would be done, and the longer it
would take Labour to ever recover. It was they, kind of, brutal
approach to things. Because the Labour brand starts to suffer.
Starts? Let's be honest. The more liberal minded former remaining MPs
were desperate for Labour to recover. They are saying we need the
Labour Party to be on our side so that we have some threat to hang
over the Prime Minister, saying you've got to give us more of what
we want. That is the view in London. Our correspondent Iain Watson
is in Whitehaven, in the heart The one that produced such a massive
upset last night. It is the morning after the night before, give us a
postmortem. I suppose it is. Calm after the
storm. A closely fought election campaign, as you know, Andrew. I was
told before midnight last night that Labour had lost. But the scale of
the loss is quite surprising. They were hoping that the NHS campaign
would have stemmed it but it wasn't the case. There are three
interlinked problems. The first and most serious is trust. Jeremy Corbyn
said what people wanted to hear. He said he was in favour of new nuclear
capacity. A shift from him and his campaign in 2015. Sellafield is the
biggest employer. There are problems over a new potential capacity at
Moorside. He said that. People didn't trust him. The second thing
is Jeremy Corbyn himself. There are Labour MPs out knocking on the
doorsteps. They were saying that prompted his leadership came up and
not in a good way. And the third, a slightly interesting one, which I've
been finding out this morning, which is that Jeremy Corbyn is railing
against the establishment. The outsider come if you like. But here
he was seen as part of the problem. The town is rundown, Labour's done
nothing about it. He was coming across as incumbent. You out those
problems together, it doesn't bode well for the next general election,
a swing against Labour here would lose them a further 50 seats. What
on earth do they do now is to mark they have had a vote of no
confidence in him. -- what on earth do they do now? I'm glad to see that
Storm Doris has disappeared and there is sunshine behind you. Such a
significant result last night there. The other important constituency, in
the Midlands, Stoke, neighbour got a reduced share of the vote and Ukip
was probably as big a story as anything else. There were more
cameras on Paul Nuttall after the result than there were on the Labour
candidate who had won and become MP. Our assistant political editor
Norman Smith is in Stoke. Give us your latest on the mood now
in Stoke. Some comfort for Labour in Stoke,
not just because they won but they managed to repulse the perceived
threat of Ukip. Many Labour MPs are drawing a huge sigh of relief. There
was a view that Ukip were poised to due to labour in the North exactly
what happened in Scotland. That is a big plus. For Ukip, you must say
that it is a bad result, however you cut it. Although they are saying
this is their 72nd target seat, it was a dirty campaign. Labour threw
everything at it. Make no mistake, this was a pretty much must win for
Ukip. Remember, Nigel Farage pretty much said as much. He said it was a
fundamental that Paul Nuttall won here. He hasn't. He didn't get close
to winning in a big pro Brexit seat. And it raises a number of questions.
One, where on earth did Ukip go now? Theresa May has consolidated the
Tory party. It's difficult to see Ukip making any further inroads into
the Tory vote. Paul Nuttall's big idea was to hoover up fragmented
disintegrated Labour voters. This is the sort of seat which should have
been a prime target for him to do exactly that. Yet it simply hasn't
happened. There is much more of a problem, and that is, what is the
point of Ukip? We have had the referendum. People voted for Brexit.
Theresa May is going full steam ahead with it, why do you need Ukip?
And I'm not entirely sure they have an answer. We have covered Ukip for
many years. I think we know enough. There is going to be a pretty bloody
and nasty postmortem on this campaign. And Paul Nuttall will be
in the eye of the storm on this, do you agree?
It is not just Ukip which has taken a big hit, Paul Nuttall as leader.
He has suffered a really damaging few weeks which I think will last.
It is hard to see him recovering his sense of drive, ambition and
confidence for the party. The more you look at Ukip, I am
increasingly of the view Nigel Farage was what gave them their
whole momentum. Without him, they have struggled from people who have
been elected leader then chucked it in, people who did not want to be
leader, the person who is leader but could not make progress. Without
Nigel Farage, their central mission of Brexit, they are really beginning
to struggle. I wonder whether their fate is like that of so many
minority parties, they have their moment, then they go into terminal
decline. Thank you. Let us get more labour
reaction. We've been joined now
by the Labour MP John Woodcock whose constituency of Barrow
and Furness is next What are your Parliamentary Labour
colleagues saying? Some are saying Copeland is marginal, it is no big
deal you lost it? No, it isn't. Now, and I don't think
it does anybody any favours to downplay what has happened here.
This needs to be a massive rocket to the Labour Party.
And to everyone in it. This is a seat which we have been blessed with
as returned Labour MPs since the 1930s. And was actually the seat
which recorded the biggest swing to Labour after eight years of a Labour
Government in 2005 and maintained a very big majority in 2010 despite
taking in Tory leaning Keswick. This is an earthquake. It is a
terrible reversal for us. We all need to see it as such.
Trying to say, oh, well, it was all very difficult, or it was simply one
single issue, nuclear, just ignores the fact we are, for the Labour
Party, we are in an historically vulnerable and parlous position now.
We are trailing in the polls in a way which would have been
unthinkable midterm against a Government which is frankly flailing
around on the issue of exiting the EU, which it did by mistake against
its own wishes, as a Government. So, you know, we have to understand the
seriousness of this and do better. Look, it was a Labour held seat, and
as you say had been for a long time. A by-election with a Conservative
Government in power, that is usually hugely to the opposition's advantage
in a by-election. The election was fought on Jeremy Corbyn's chosen
political weapon, the NHS. And yet you at that altogether and you still
lost. Why? Well, I wouldn't use the word,
weapon. Let us dwell for a moment on the West Cumberland Hospital. This
is a community in Whitehaven which is similar to mine in Barrow and
Furness, which has its hospital, has a maternity unit and accident and
emergency which is seen as under threat. The alternative is to travel
on very difficult road for many miles.
I understand that, we have covered all that.
So it was a strong case, you had a strong candidate with experience of
the NHS. My point is, he still lost. Well, yes, indeed. Well... No one
can ignore the issue of leadership. It would be fatuous to do so. I
don't think anyone, I hope, is suggesting that it wasn't an issue
on the doorstep. But I think it is important that when we are deciding
as a party what we do next, that we don't simply pin this all on one,
this is not about the competence or capabilities of one individual at
the top. This is about the direction of the party, and people currently
do not think that the direction we have set is making us a credible
opposition at what is such a fundamentally important time for the
future of our country. And that has to be a wake up call, or we will be
suffering possibly an existential white out at the next general
election. John MacDonald, the Shadow
Chancellor, confident of Jeremy Corbyn. He says is people like you
who are to blame for this. And Tony Blair. And Peter Mandelson. They
give all these interviews. And they make all the speeches. It puts
across the impression the -- Labour is deeply divided, no-confidence in
the leader. People don't like divided political parties which is
why we are not doing so well. You are part of the problem rather than
the solution is what he is saying. Well, I did listen to some of what
Mr McDonald, our Shadow Chancellor, said this morning. I was a little
puzzled by his description of Labour having been disunited of late. For
all of the obviously well-publicised difficulties in the summer, what you
have seen since Jeremy wants his real election leadership campaign is
a real willingness by people who of course have had real misgivings, but
we have all united exactly as he is calling us to do now. The issue is
not unity in the party. It is direction, or lack of direction. And
I really hope that John MacDonald and Jeremy and everyone else who
claims that we will be able to close a polling gap by the end of the
year. I say, great, to that, but it is time now rather than blaming
people who left the political scene ten years ago, to set out how we
will do that as a party now. Thank you for joining us.
Joining us now from Newcastle is Labour's campaigns and
Thank you for joining us. The daily Mirror is probably your biggest,
Labour's biggest ally on Slate Street, solid Labour supporting
tabloid newspaper. Its editorial today reads, the two words which
best described by devastated Labour humiliatingly lost the northern
stronghold are Jeremy and Corbyn. What do you say?
Listen, this wasn't in any way an election on the leadership of the
Labour Party but a by-election in Copeland on the coast will stop and
the two main issues in Copeland where the NHS, and, indeed, the
nuclear industry. It wasn't a ballot or indication on whether Jeremy
Corbyn should or should not be the leader of the Labour Party. Jeremy
Corbyn is a leader of one of the biggest is not the biggest political
parties in Europe, we have got nearly 600,000 members.
What is the point of having all these members if you cannot win a
by-election in ACTU have held since 1935?
We have held it since 1934. Let me tell you I am absolutely
disappointed to say the least with the result in Copeland last night. I
will be knocking on the doors in Copeland. I have had some positive
and negative responses. I have been speaking to people, they have been
fabulous. It is a real problem in areas like Copeland, they feel
disenfranchised from politics, they feel left behind by politicians.
Jeremy Corbyn wasn't something that cropped up on the doorstop when I
was visiting Copeland. It was the fact it was a distrust in
politicians. So why did they vote tall green --
vote Tory if they distrust politicians?
We have democratic process voting for what they thought was in their
best interest. They won by just over 2000 votes. That is the Democratic
recess. What they do distrust is Labour and
Jeremy Corbyn which is why the first time in living memory they have
elected a non-Labour MP. I certainly do not share those
views. I assure you that is being spewed out in the media but this is
focused on why everybody should -- but we should focus on the facts
Jeremy Corbyn is one of the most popular politicians in the country
at this time. The issues in Copeland were about the jobs, and about the
economy. People were worried about those. And
it was about the NHS. Both Mr Corbyn and your candidate, a doctor and an
added as driver, knows a lot about the NHS, by all accounts fought a
good campaign, put the NHS at the heart of the campaign, it is meant
to be the issue for you and Mr Corbyn. And you still lost, you lost
big. So what went wrong? What went wrong
is the fact that the people in Copeland, like many constituencies
up and down the country, feel let down and left behind by the
politicians in Westminster. And what people were looking for at the
election, what they voted for, what they saw as secure enjoyment in the
nuclear industry, a future for themselves and their children. That,
in many ways, outshone the problems they have got with regards to the
founding NHS in that area. When you look at it, the issue in Copeland
was by and large uniquely to do with the nuclear industry. Let us say it
once more, the Labour Party, Jeremy Corbyn, did, and we were the only
party prepared to underwrite the future of the new nuclear facility,
and also we did say that we were desperate to ensure the nuclear
industry continued in a balanced portfolio for the future for this
country. We supported it. Unfortunately, the people in
Copeland chose not to accept the views of the Labour Party.
They didn't believe you, didn't trust you, because Jeremy Corbyn
said in 2011, I say no nuclear power, not just that, decommission
the stations we have got. That is what Mr Corbyn really thinks, that
is what he has fought his whole life about nuclear power. They did not
trust your leader on an issue which is of vital importance to the people
of Copeland. It is an absolute critical
importance for the people of Copeland and that is why the Labour
Party gave that undertaking. The Labour Party... Theresa May was
asked on her visit whether she would give an undertaking with regard to
the future of nuclear. She refused to do so on numerous questions. We
did, we get that undertaking as a party.
They didn't believe you. It is Labour Party policy to support
Trident, to support the nuclear industry.
Yes, but the problem people have and it goes to the heart of
Labourconundrum is you say it is Labour Party policy to support
Trident, to support nuclear power generation, and everybody knows your
leader does not believe in either. It is not a credible position to
have policies that you stand for, and a leader who spends his whole
life opposing them. And that is why the people of Copeland would not
vote for your party for the first time in four generations.
I'll say it again because you are continually ignoring the reality of
the democratic process within the Labour Party. The conference decides
policy, the conference decides the direction of the Labour Party. And
the Labour Party Conference supports the nuclear industry. They agreed
nuclear has a role to play in a balanced energy portfolio.
But your leader... Your leader has only changed because he has had to.
Your leader has always been against it, and those are his true views.
Jeremy Corbyn has been consistent on many things the 35 years, why would
he change his mind on this? That is why people don't trust him. In
Copeland, people thought you were saying this because you wanted to
get elected and they did not trust you. They didn't trust the party
that they had always made their representatives in Parliament. It is
a seismic change. I think it is a lot deeper than
that, Andrew. As I said earlier, there's lots of problems in
constituencies up and down the country where politicians and the
general public seem to be disenfranchised. The real issue is
jobs and the economy in these constituencies and we have got to
listen, we had to decide policies for the future, look at what is
happening in Copeland and Stoke, to have a clear assessment on how we go
forward. Can you remember a worse by-election
result the Labour than this one? To me, if you lose a by-election by
one vote, it is a disaster. I am not saying anything other than that.
Can you remember a worse one? I am of a firm view we should have
retained Copeland. I am not trying to say anything other. We didn't. We
have to learn from it and go forward. We have too tried to regain
the likes of constituencies like Copeland and earned the trust of the
people, ensure we have policies which are quite distinct from other
parties. We don't have the divine right, no political party has, to
survive. We have got to have the right policies, distinct, different,
bold, imaginative, to reach the hearts of people up and down this
country. A big challenge we face. You are at 27%. What is all of that
rhetoric? You've got -- that's got nothing to do with it. You face an
existential crisis, one of your own Labour MPs has said that, and you
were going on about things like that when your poll ratings continue to
die and you cannot even win the Copeland by-election! -- dive. I'm
not blustering. I'm talking about the issues facing real people. But
it does not sound like they are listening. The reality is that
people in this country are living in despair, frightened of them are good
jobs, frightened about the failed economy, they want a future which
the politicians would listen to and develop in the future. That is our
promise. I'm sorry if you disagree with that. It is not a matter of
disagreeing it is what the people think. If they are so frightened and
jobs are an issue in Coupland, no question, the NHS was an issue, they
are frightened of these things. The Labour Party have tried to make this
an issue but they are still not voting for you, what you do for an
encore? -- Copeland. The intention of this interview is to damage the
leader of the Labour Party. I'm not talking to you about Jeremy Corbyn's
future. We will get in and listen to the views of the people, listen to
their concerns, change their future in terms of despair to hope. We will
begin to deliver what they want by listening to what they say, rather
than the other way around. We have fantastic policies. We are in the
process of developing some brilliant policies, which I hope will address
the many needs of the very many people up and down this country. I
know it's been a long night for everybody. Thank you for your time
and for joining us there at the BBC in the north-east. What do you make
of what you have heard? I thought that was crucifixion. Pour him, that
was hard. Of course he is wrong, this is about Corbyn. For all the
blustering and, you know, the last-minute U-turns, Jeremy Corbyn
is an unreconstructed, antinuclear, anti-EU, anti-everything, kind of
man. And the people have spoken. They don't trust. They don't think
he wants to be a leader. They don't see him as a leader. There was a
problem in Copeland because the nuclear issue. But what they think
is broadly in line with the rest of the UK. It is not just a Copeland
issue, or a Jeremy Corbyn issue, either. Social Democratic parties
across Europe, including the Democrat in the US, most of them are
in trouble. I thought that's right. And the interview was interesting.
People in the Labour Party have learnt the lesson from last year
when they went after Jeremy Corbyn. They attacked him after the
referendum because they were so frustrated. They thought his
leadership was dire. They had one bullet in the chamber, they fired
it, Jeremy Corbyn was still leader, and they also antagonised many of
the people who supported Jeremy Corbyn and thought he was brilliant,
he was their choice of leader. He demonstrated that they sort of
understood that. But there are still members of the Labour Party who
still want the Jeremy Corbyn project to work. But also, there is not much
point in removing Jeremy Corbyn if you don't address the important
issue of what is a party of the Centre left do in the 21st century
when all of the industrialists who have always supported the Labour
Party and labour movement across party, the nature of the economy and
infrastructure has changed. It isn't obvious what they call social
Democratic politician looks like any more. -- what a core. There is
really who is articulating that answer. But they know that the
answer isn't Jeremy Corbyn. The Greek Socialist party has been
pretty much wiped out. The Italian one has... Germany might have a
chance. The French Socialists are about to be wiped out. The German
social Democrats may have been given a new lease of life by their new
candidate and Angela Merkel is on the back foot. But that seems like a
change of personnel rather than a change of policy. Britain isn't
alone in working out what they stand for. They are quite common problems.
One of them seems to be a big gap between what became the common sort
of, I hate this term, but Metropolitan, liberal steering
committee of the left, and the, sort of, storm trooper basis of
industrial working class which always drove the labour movement
forward through trade unions. You need that coalition to form power.
But culturally those two constituencies have driven further
apart. Between Ed Miliband and Jeremy Corbyn's leaderships, they
have broken up completely. In Stoke Labour played the Patriot Lock card.
And was is holding its nose. Because on their leaflet they had a Saint
Georges flag. -- patriotic card. The industrial left on the centre-left
does not stand for the patriotism which is common in the working
class. Absolutely. The old working-class socialist
parties in France are going to Marine Le Pen. This isn't happening
as much in Germany because the antibodies and inoculation between
nationalism and Germany is so much stronger. Of course. Well, that's
labour, let's turn to Ukip. We did ask for an interview from one of
them spokes people -- we did ask an interview from one of their
spokespeople but they did not want to.
The former Ukip leader Diane James is with us now.
She was in charge for 18 days last autumn before
Because of Copeland label was a loser last night. It did win Stoke.
Much relief there. The other big story was Ukip and Paul Nuttall.
What is your question? I would like you to comment. Paul has gone
through a horrible experience. He has gone through a tough learning
curve. He has seen first-hand, experienced it first hand, the
issues Nigel faced all the time he was trying to get into Westminster.
What I don't doubt happened was that Labour was absolutely focused on
assuring Ukip didn't take Stoke. I think they sacrificed Copeland as a
result. In doing so they had three strands to their focus. One, they
had to stop Ukip in the West Midlands. Two, they had to undermine
Paul as leader of Ukip. Three, they had to undermine him personally.
They have achieved all three of those. I don't believe they have
undermined him fatally. I don't expect Paul to resign. I don't want
to see that. Knives will be out for him. I don't think so. Nigel said
that he had to win that. One of the biggest bankroll is said he wasn't a
fan of Paul Nuttall. OK... His leadership must be under question.
First, I am now an independent, I am no longer a Ukip member. To refer to
your situation, giving me the possessive doesn't apply to stop
Nigel made some statements. I don't think to suddenly infer from those
statements that Paul should fall on his sword just because of the result
that came out of Stoke. But it has been a bruising experience for him.
Indeed. He was fighting on all fronts. In many cases he was his own
worst enemy. And labour were out to do him. It wouldn't be surprising if
he decided he did not want to go on. Possibly, but I don't think that is
going to happen. Paul has stood to lead the party. He has achieved one
fundamental aim. He has unified the party. By this experience he has
identified that this has come at a cost. Maybe there will be casualties
in terms of the team he has around him, who you will be reviewing this
result with over the weekend, over the coming days, and a side may be
some new faces need to be brought in. Maybe some new approaches need
to come in. The good thing, from my point of view, as an observer, an
independent observer, is he's gone through a tough call. He hasn't
achieved his aim. But he has learnt a lot. And so has the party. As an
independent, I emphasise, they will go forward with this. Except even in
the good times Ukip has had the ability to rip itself to pieces. Now
that it is going through some bad times, that propensity to rip itself
to pieces must surely be enhanced. I don't think it goes anywhere near to
what the Labour Party is doing. Labour hasn't gone through the
number of leaders you have. I'll go back to my point. Paul, in the last
few months, has brought the party together. We haven't heard the
narrative. The media tried to portray that the party wasn't
unified, that people were smiting, stabbing each other in the back, I
think he's done a good job there. What he is now seeing. He will learn
from this experience. Where does he need to move on the chessboard the
people around him so this doesn't happen again. Let's put this into
perspective. Even I understand the comment he made. This was 72nd on
the list of targets. The risk he took was high risk. Why did he
stand, then? He must be ruing the day, thinking that was a misguided
risk. But that is the benefit of hindsight, Andrew. It was possible
to win. Given the high Brexit vote within the constituency. Given,
although there had been problems with the Labour candidate, he was a
Remain politician and his tweets were embarrassing. One of the
reasons Paul was elected, he had to win over working-class voters
disillusioned with Jeremy Corbyn, Brexit voters, and he had to get
Tories to vote tactically to put labour out. Neither happened. It was
a total strategic failure. I'm not going to agree that it was a total
strategic failure. It wasn't a good outcome. I'm going to sit here and
appreciate that point honestly. Let's go back to some clear markers.
Just as you just put some down. Labour through the book at Stoke. It
was strategically so pivotal to them they had to keep it. But that is
what happens at by-elections. Paul made mistakes. Politicians do that.
When it came down to it, the tactical voting you just explained
did not happen. You can put into context that some of the issues
surrounding Paul's campaign contributed to that. I've heard
comments that Hillsborough was being raised on the doorsteps. But going
forward, all of that is now in the public domain, Paul has time to
recoup, reenergise himself. Has he? I believe so. It is my instinct that
this weekend knives will be out for him. The Sunday papers, in
particular, what do you think,? What Ukip have consistency lacked --
consistently lack is a message. Nigel Farage could get some support
but could not win a seat. Labour have the rusty machine. But when
they start it up it does get people out. It is a practical problem for
Ukip. But it points to the question, what is the purpose of this party
now that Theresa May has given people who have voted for them in
the past exactly what they want? Absolutely right. What Theresa May
has done with her heart Brexit, she has moved her tanks into Paul
Michael's garden, yard, whatever you want, the territory. -- into Paul
Nuttall's. I don't think the Prime Minister has made her position clear
on whether it is a hard or soft Brexit at all. I think it needs to
be a clean Brexit. You could interpret that as hard. She hasn't,
Angie. If we have the detail that would signify either soft or hard,
the movements and criticism won't be going on. -- Andrew. What hasn't she
told you that you want to know? I have no idea what her position is on
the ECJ. She has made it clear that if she gets her way we will not be
under the jurisdiction of it. She hasn't. She has given us a topline
comment. She hasn't given us the detail. We still don't know what
will happen with freedom of movement of people, services and goods. We
don't know what will happen to European citizens here. She is in a
bargaining situation led by the EU in terms of... You are dancing on
the head of a pin on this. I'm not. Even staunch Tory Eurosceptics
disagree... You have illustrated what Ukip's real problem is right
now. Because it is clear that Tory inclined Ukip voters, those who were
Tories and have now moved to Ukip, they are pretty much back in the
Tory fold now. They have confidence in Theresa May. Ukip cannot attract
those Labour voters they were hoping to get. You're not getting votes
from the Tories or Labour. I can't comment on Ukip strategy.
What I have seen happen in the last few weeks is two clear by elections.
Labour absolutely focused on taking out Paul and Ukip. The Tories gave
them a free rein, the Tories once they have destroyed Labour will then
switch to Ukip. At the moment Labour is taking on that mantle.
I am just seeing pictures of the Prime Minister who has arrived in
Copeland, and the Conservative candidate, now the new Members of
Parliament for Copeland is standing beside her on the left of the
screen. Let us hear what she is saying.
The Conservative Party will deliver the people across the whole country,
a country that works for everyone, not just the privileged fruit, and
Trudy will be a fantastic MP, delivering for the people of
Copeland -- not just the privileged few.
A wonderful victory. Please, I am sure you have something to say to
people. CHEERING Well, I would really like
to take this opportunity to thank the people of Copeland the voting
for me, having faith in and also for the volunteers who have travelled to
help us when this historic election. I am ruling looking forward to
getting on with the job and very much looking forward to going down
to London on Monday and making sure we deliver on the plan I have been
pledging for the last four weeks. Thank you very much, Copeland.
CHEERING There we go, Trudy Harrison, the new member of
Parliament, Conservative Members of Parliament for Copeland, with the
Prime Minister who has gone up to bathe in the glory of her victory.
Apparently she went to bed and was awoken by a text that the
Conservatives had one Copeland. She was so excited by her standards,
that she woke her husband. I am sure she was, he was very grateful.
That was a real display of expression.
Next week voters in Northern Ireland return to the polls for the second
The snap election was triggered when Sinn Fein announced it would no
longer work with the DUP in the power-sharing executive,
following a scandal involving subsidies for renewable energy.
Like all good scandals, it's got several catchy names.
The idea was to increase Northern Ireland's consumption
But it ended up meaning businesses like, say,
this Ferrari dealership on the outskirts of Belfast,
It has landed the taxpayer with an unexpected bill
Oh, and it brought down the Government.
Also, it seems, watchers of Stormont see the scandal more
This isn't just about a heating scandal, there is much to it.
The RHI scandal, the renewable heat incentive, is a political
opportunity, a smokescreen for larger issues
Things like the Irish Language Act, the broader equality context.
And trying to make sure their supporters don't feel the DUP
This is an opportunity for Sinn Fein to redress that.
The Northern Ireland Assembly was established
following a referendum on the Good Friday
Sinn Fein were part of power-sharing from the start.
As a result, the DUP refused to take part,
accusing the British Government and the unionists of
Nevertheless, the executive operated for several years.
But stumbled repeatedly over how to deal with the past.
After four years' suspension and direct rule from Westminster,
the St Andrew's Agreement in 2006 set out a timetable
I affirm the terms of the pledge of office.
With power shared by the largest parties, the polar opposites
If your definition of working is, does it keep
Does it work in the sense of frequently passing legislation
that has a profound impact on the lives Northern
Probably not, because not an awful lot gets done.
It divides on the one side the Protestant Shankhill area
and on the other side the Catholic Falls community.
Now, those two communities are still largely separate,
But, while divisions here are not as stark
or as violent as they used to be, it's also unlikely many voters
will change their allegiances in the next election.
Do you think anything will change after the election?
No, probably not, just the same people.
It needs somebody to work it all out.
I don't think this will do any good, I don't think it will change.
They will fight about something else.
This will be the second election they get to vote in,
Not exactly a sign of healthy politics but it could be a good
Something massive happens and then we take a step forward.
Something sounds quite bad, so we have a scandal,
We have another agreement around a set of issues.
Legacy issues have been rumbling on for years.
They've nearly been agreed two, three times.
This perhaps is the opportunity to actually make that happen.
After the election, the main parties have three weeks to form
a power-sharing government and agree a way forward.
If they don't, there could be another election or a period
So, the stakes are high, when Northern Ireland goes
And we've been joined from Belfast by our Northern Ireland political
Is there not a danger that the people of Northern Ireland go to the
polls and they end up producing roughly the same result as before
they went to the polls, and doesn't resolve anything?
How will that work out? It is entirely possible we might
have a similar balance of power at Stormont after these elections as
before. It seems quite a long way to go for the opposition parties on
either side of the divide here, the Ulster Unionists or the SDLP, to
overtake either the DUP or Sinn Fein. There might be a little bit of
change in terms of the balance of power in as much as the DUP might
lose its ability to veto anything it doesn't
like. But it seems a long shot for any
kind of a wholesale change to the system here. That means we could
have some difficult talks on the other side of this election. Once
the election is out of the way, we know the results, the new members
take their seats, the process is they then sit down again to try and
recreate a power-sharing Government, that is how it works?
That is right. We have a three-week timetable after this election the
them to once again vote in a first and Deputy First Minister which they
need to, to get devolution up and running properly here.
Most people are sceptical as to whether they can do that because
Sinn Fein has specified in particular that the DUP leader
Arlene Foster at the centre of this storm over the so-called renewable
heat scandal, they don't want to share power with her until an
inquiring which will take at least six months has concluded into this.
That means it is really hard to imagine they will be able to piece
it together in three weeks which is why there is a lot of expectation we
may end up having a period of direct rule with Westminster appointing
ministers running day-to-day affairs here.
I got the impression from the report, I may be wrong, tell me,
that the people in Northern Ireland haven't got much enthusiasm for this
election, is that right or is it unfair?
I certainly think they did get interested in the renewable heat
scandal because when that was explained in the autumn to them,
everybody immediately added it up in relation to that. So there was a lot
of interest in that. It is an uncertain question whether we will
have turnout going down because the voters, 1.2 million of them, will
say, a plague on their houses, or whether the anger particularly over
the renewable heat scandal will manifest itself in an increased
turnout. Thank you for being with us today.
We have had a statement from Nigel Farage to the result instead, he
says the party message on immigration wasn't strong enough in
Stoke which I guess is an interdict attack on Paul Nuttall. He says the
campaign wasn't targeted as well as it could have been or tough enough
with immigration policy. He said the Ukip current leader, the party
candidates, in Stoke had a tough time and finished in a tough
position. But he says he will get through it. He says Mr Knott also
has his full support and was the right person to lead Ukip. -- Says
Paul Nuttall still has his full support.
He also says people currently trust Theresa May on Brexit. A little
different from what Diane James was saying.
Nigel Farage was speaking from Washington, not in the north-east of
England, but another Washington. Washington, DC.
Time now for our look back at the political week -
The PM swept into Parliament on Monday, but she wasn't heading
Theresa May perched on the steps of the throne to listen to peers
debating the bill to withdraw from the EU.
Later, protesters gathered outside Parliament to demonstrate
Inside, MPs debated the petition calling for his state
We are seven days into his presidency.
He is invited to have the full panoply of a state visit.
On Tuesday, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said
the UK would face a very hefty bill for leaving the EU.
The talking point at Prime Minister's Questions wasn't
the May-Corbyn exchanges, but the peformance by Labour's
And finally, Copeland went Tory after more than 80 years in the red.
But Labour held on to Stoke Central, seeing off a challenge from the Ukip
Thanks to Cristina, Rafael and all my guests.
The One O'Clock News is starting over on BBC One now.
I'll be back on Sunday with the Sunday Politics
Donald Trump's first 100 days in the White House
are defining how he'll deal with the rest of the world.
the UK is stepping up the formal business of Brexit.
As the new President strives to deliver
on his promise to put America first...
..Prime Minister Theresa May is setting out
Andrew Neil analyses the results of the Copeland and Stoke-on-Trent Central by-elections with journalists Rafael Behr and Cristina Odone, as well as discussing Private Members' Bills and the Northern Ireland elections.