Union chief issues 'final warning' to Jeremy Corbyn after Copeland

Posted February 25, 2017

The area was once considered a safe Labour constituency.

"Perhaps there should be a general election!"

Now, of course, the ball is in the Conservative's court, and they have to maintain this level of success.

Voters deserted the party in droves as it lost a seat to the Tories which it had held since 1935.

"I was elected to lead this party, I was elected to oppose austerity and to oppose the redistribution of wealth in the wrong direction, which is what this Government is doing".

Before the poll results were in, Labour chiefs had also voiced fears that Storm Doris could deter party supporters from turning out to vote. "That is the course we've taken", Corbyn told delegates.

Harrison said Corbyn did not represent "ordinary working people" in the district. "We'll continue our campaigning work on the NHS, on social care on housing", he said.

Jeremy Corbyn has won the Labour leadership race against rival Owen Smith in the election contest that lasted three months.

Labour campaigns chairman Ian Lavery - a leadership loyalist - insisted the by-election was not a ballot on Mr Corbyn's leadership.

Mr Corbyn was defiant when he was asked whether he should "fall on his sword" following the loss of Copeland.

Woodcock stopped short of calling for Corbyn's resignation, but said he should remain leader "unless he decides that he thinks it is right to go".

"And can I thank everyone who worked so hard in this campaign when many in the media wrote us off, and said UKIP are going to win that place, UKIP are going to take it - I'll tell you what happened yesterday - people came out, worked, knocked on doors, it's a message about the economy, it's a message about jobs, it's a message about this country".

Labour's shadow leader of the Lords, Baroness Smith, described the Copeland defeat as "devastating" and said Mr Corbyn should "think long and hard" about his response.

"We mustn't bury our head in the sand - this is a very bad election result for us", she said.

"The leader has to reflect official Labour party policy", she said "T he Labour Party has always been a broad coalition, and on nuclear there's always been differently held views". All sections of the p arty, from the Leader to elected office holders and the members, need to listen to those doubts and learn from them.