Hartlepool, parliamentary by-election result:— Britain Elects (@BritainElects) May 7, 2021
Con: 51.9% (+23.0)
Lab: 28.7% (-9.0)
Ind: 9.7% (+7.5)
RefUK: 1.2% (-24.6)
Grn: 1.2% (+1.2)
LDem: 1.2% (-3.0)
Oth: 6.1% (+4.9)
Con GAIN from Lab.
And looking at it in absolute terms makes it clear how badly things have gone for Labour:
In 2017, the Tories got 14,319 votes in Hartleypool. In 2021, they got 15,529.— Adam Smith (@adamndsmith) May 7, 2021
In 2017, Labour got 21,969 votes. In 2021, they got 8589.
That’s not a swing to the Conservatives; that’s people not caring enough to show up.
So what's happened here is that a bunch of ReformUK voters (the old name for which was the "Brexit Party") switched to voting Conservative, while Labour voters stayed at home because they didn't see the point.
Easy, you'd think. Labour just need to get more Brexit-oriented and bring home those lovely Brexit voters. It's what the people want! But wait!
Hendon (Sunderland) council result:— Britain Elects (@BritainElects) May 6, 2021
LDem: 42.2% (+34.8)
Lab: 34.8% (-30.2)
Con: 15.5% (-4.8)
Grn: 4.5% (-2.9)
UKIP: 3.1% (+3.1)
LDem GAIN from Lab
Turns out that actually they don't! One party can't just dither in the middle of things and hope that the issues that split them go away!
Now, if Labour had held up their side of the bargain in 1997, and we had PR now, this wouldn't be such a problem. But under FPTP, multiple parties on one side of an issue versus a single party on the other side means that the unified side wins every time! And as Labour's rules prevent pacts England is going to be fucked for quite some time.
Edit. Here are the Labour votes over the last few elections:
2010 LAB Hold, 16,267 (Milliband)
2015 LAB hold, 14,076 (Milliband)
2017 LAB hold, 21,969 (Corbyn)
2019 LAB hold, 15,464 (Corbyn)
2021 LAB loss - 8589 (Stamner)
So Corbyn took Labour to a high point in 2017 in Hartlepool, then even after the prolonged media lashing in 2019, he still did better there than milliband had done.
Original post on Dreamwidth - there are comments there.