The Conservative party in power in the United Kingdom suffered a severe defeat in two by-elections on Friday against the Labor Party, an ominous result for Prime Minister Rishi Sunak.
Labor candidate Sarah Edwards won the seat of Tamworth, in central England, once held by the Conservatives, by 1,316 votes, sweeping away a lead of almost 20,000 votes.
The Conservatives lost the seat of Mid-Bedfordshire (central England) by 1,192 votes, which they had won by 24,664 votes in 2019.
These two elections were held at a time when the Prime Minister's rating is at its lowest level since coming to power almost a year ago.
The Labor opposition, which has a large lead in the polls ahead of the general elections expected across the United Kingdom next year, had itself described these seats as “very safe” for the Conservatives.
The latter themselves recognize that these two ballots are being held in a “difficult” context locally.
The departure of the two deputies bears the mark of the Boris Johnson era, which does not had no choice but to leave power in the summer of 2022 after a succession of scandals, first and foremost that of parties organized in Downing Street in violation of anti-covid rules.
In Mid-Bedfordshire, the legislative by-election was organized due to the resignation of Conservative MP Nadine Dorries, an ardent defender of the former Prime Minister. The former culture minister quit her post as an MP after being refused a seat in the House of Lords, and accused the current head of government of abandoning the “fundamental principles of conservatism”.
In the constituency of Tamworth, voters had to nominate the successor to Chris Pincher, at the heart of the affair which was fatal to Boris Johnson. At the end of June 2022, the MP grabbed the buttocks of one man and squeezed the private parts of another one evening at the end of June 2022 at the very exclusive Carlton Club in London, which once hosted the British Conservative Party.
Subjected last year to intense pressure to say what he knew about Chris Pincher's past on previous incidents, Boris Johnson admitted a “mistake” in appointing him a few months earlier.
< p>After asserting the opposite, Downing Street ended up recognizing that Boris Johnson had been informed in 2019 of old accusations against Mr. Pincher, ensuring that he had “forgotten” them.
Chris Pincher, MP for the constituency since 2010, ended up resigning after having his appeal against his suspension of Parliament rejected, which could in any case have given rise to a by-election.
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