There is no win for the government in Labour and the Lib Dems losing their deposits or the Greens’ sticky results

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Searching for positives in the aftermath of Thursday’s triple byelections, the Conservative party chair, Greg Hands, pointed out that Labour had lost its deposit in Somerton and Frome. Speaking immediately after, the polling expert Sir John Curtice had a different view: this was actually bad news for the Tories.

Beneath the headline results – the Tories shedding huge majorities to Labour in Selby and Ainsty, and to the Liberal Democrats in Somerton and Frome, while just clinging on in Boris Johnson’s former seat of Uxbridge and South Ruislip – was a wealth of detail.

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