|A plague on both their houses
||[Friday 3rd May 2019 at 9:33 pm]
In the wee hours of the morning the BBC quizzed figures (starts around 22m30s in) from the three main English parties as to what they thought would happen. Roughly paraphrasing:
Conservatives: ...yeah, we're probably going to lose councillors. Hopefully just 500 but maybe a thousand if it goes badly.
Labour: we lost 200-odd councillors last time and want them back.
Lib Dems: a three-figure gain would be awesome.
And the results with all 248 councils declared, compared to 2015 results:
Conservatives: lost 1334 councillors
UKIP: lost 145 councillors
Labour: lost 82 councillors
Greens: gained 194 councillors
Others: gained 662 councillors (quite a lot of independents doing well on local issues)
Lib Dems: gained 703 councillors
Well, that exceeded everyone's expectations - consensus in the run-up was that the Tories were going to get a kicking (the government traditionally does badly in local elections), but they didn't expect to lost quite so many. And the Lib Dems have done spectacularly well out of the resulting chaos.
The BBC deployed Prof Curtice to sum it up as the electorate collectively deciding "a plague on both your houses" of the Tories and Labour, which seems about right. The Tory leadership is still pursing Brexit at all costs with the only argument being how much of mess they're willing to make of it, while the Labour leadership can't make up their mind whether they want to be in/out/shake it all about. I've thought for a while now that the Lib Dems could do very well if they went all in on a single issue campaign of stop Brexit, and they've only gone and done just that with spectacular success.
Bring on the MEP election chaos!
Edit: updated with final numbers