LONDON — The Conservatives clinched the Copeland by-election in a historic victory over Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour party.
Trudy Harrison was elected as the constituency’s first Tory MP by 13,748 votes to 11,601 for Labour’s Gillian Troughton on a turnout of 51%.
It’s the first time that a sitting government has gained a seat in a by-election since the Conservatives won Mitcham And Morden in 1982. However, analysis this week by elections expert Matt Singh suggests that the last gain of a comparable size by a governing party was way back in 1878.
The result is a major blow for Corbyn’s leadership. The Labour leader, who was only elected for a second time last year is certain to face a barrage of criticism and may even face a possible challenge to his leadership from former supporters.
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