VAL | Boris Johnsons seger i Londons borgmästarval var en av få ljuspunkter för premiärminister David Cameron och de konservativa i lokalvalen.
För koalitionspartnern Liberal Democrats blev valet en än större förlust. Daniel Boffey och Toby Helm i The Observer skriver:
Thursday’s local elections and a string of referendums in cities up and down the country, which saw Cameron’s flagship plan for elected mayors rejected, were shocking for both the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats. While the Tories lost 405 seats, the Liberal Democrats had an equally, if not more, disastrous night, shedding more than 300 seats and sinking under a national total of 3,000 for the first time in their history. Boris Johnson’s victory against Ken Livingstone in the race for mayor of London offered some relief to the Conservatives, but Tory celebrations were muted because the contest turned out to be far closer than had been expected.
It is not just the fact that Tories and Lib Dems fared badly themselves that is alarming activists and MPs of both parties – and raising doubts in the minds of many about the electoral effects of being in coalition. It is also that Labour – dismissed by the coalition as moribund and lacking in ideas under Ed Miliband – outperformed everyone’s expectations, most of all its own. ”Labour thrive on bad day for Tories” was yesterday’s front-page headline in the normally Cameron-supporting Times.
As well as the symbolic gain from a Tory-Lib Dem coalition of Birmingham, Britain’s second largest city, Labour made progress in many former Tory strongolds across the south, raising hopes that the ”southern discomfort” that prevented it from forming a government from 1979 until the arrival of Tony Blair is easing again. Exeter and coastal towns such as Great Yarmouth, Southampton and Plymouth were claimed by the supposedly ineffectual Miliband’s party.
In all, Labour added 823 seats, way beyond its most optimistic estimates. In Wales, Labour retook control of 10 councils, including Cardiff, Blaenau Gwent, Bridgend, Caerphilly, Merthyr Tydfil, Newport and Swansea, recording its best results since local government was reorganised in 1996. And in Scotland it did far better than it expected, holding on to Glasgow city council, where it saw off the SNP, and capturing Edinburgh. London was a blot, but one that Labour passed off on the candidate.
Bild: Grafik från The Observer den 6 maj 2012. (The Guardian publicerar allt material från The Observer på sin hemsida.)