It looks like the Labour leader, Keir Starmer could be set for a second consecutive byelection defeat. Tracy Brabin, former Labour MP for Batley and Spen, won the West Yorkshire mayoralty at the recent local elections, this being the reason for the ‘former’. The role means she must resign, which she has, and an election to replace her will take place on the first of July.
The Conservative’s prospects for this election look very good. The government is enjoying a vaccine bounce, the economy is opening up and growth forecasts are encouraging. The summer is here and people are enjoying getting back into pubs bars and parks, and the government is getting a small share of credit for it.
Moreover, both Reclaim and Reform have confirmed they won’t stand. Paul Halloran, leader of the Heavy Woollen District Independents, a UKIP splinter party that won over twelve percent of the vote in Batley and Spen at the last election, has also confirmed he will not stand. This means the Tory party is virtually free of competition on the political right. Meanwhile Labour have been thwacked by the announcement by former Labour MP George Galloway, that he will be a candidate in the election. He could win as much as twenty percent of the vote. Given Labour are defending a 3,000-vote majority, this would be more than enough to deliver a devastating defeat to Labour. Who do you think will win the Batley by election? Vote in our poll below