Labour’s shadow chancellor John McDonnell acknowledged that the results from local elections so far indicate it has been a “tough night” with “some disappointments” but still described the outcome as “mixed” with a strong bedrock for the general election in June.
Speaking to Sky News, he said that “all the polls and all the commentators were predicting a wipeout… In some areas we are holding on well”, accusing the media of providing an “unbalanced” view of the party that will melt away as party leader Jeremy Corbyn continues on the general election campaign trail.
Mr McDonnell pointed to Labour’s success in the mayoral election in Doncaster and noted that the party had come within 5000 votes of winning in the west of England. He added:
I don’t underestimate how tough it is. We need to move on to general election campaign. The support for our policies is incredibly strong and we will translate that to support for the party.