Reactions have poured in after Hartlepool elected a Conservative MP for the first time since the constituency was created 47 years ago.
The Leave-supporting constituency backed Tory candidate Jill Mortimer over Labour’s Dr Paul Williams, an avid remainer and second referendum campaigner.
And Count Binface humorously added that “it’s the first time Hartlepool hasn’t had a Labour MP since Peter Mandelson”.
‘Big national raspberry’
Hewison criticised Labour leader Keir Starmer’s Brexit leadership.
He said: “The dire performance from Labour in the recent local elections is a big national raspberry to Keir Starmer’s pitiful performance in dealing with Brexit.
“He is simply providing no leadership on the biggest non-COVID issue of our age, and the electorate have had enough of it.”
What can Labour do ahead of the 2024 general election?
Rejoin EU stressed the fact that Labour has only ever been able to defeat Tory governments when it had a lead of more than 10 per cent in local elections.
They gave the examples of Neil Kinnock and Ed Milliband, saying beat the Tories of their time by seven per cent and lost the elections three years later.
But Rejoin EU also pointed out that Labour’s 23 per cent difference to Tories in Hartlepool shows “all signs to further disaster when the full local election results are shown”.
The party thinks Labour should now have a moment of reflection.
Rejoin EU Party chairman Andrew Smith said: “It seems totally unfeasible for Labour to move from this point to victory a few years ahead without a massive rethink in their approach to the European Union.
“Fortunately, they have the opportunity to change course in their upcoming September party conference, and I would urge all Labour members interested in winning the 2024 election, rather than just posturing, to act now”.
One of London’s Rejoin EU candidates, Bernd Rendic, added: “Why aren’t Labour getting the message? Brexit voters are done with you.
“The only hope Labour have left is to start being more appealing to those of us wanting to restore our links with Europe”