The Conservative Party are on track to successfully pull off a much touted electoral hat trick with incumbent Tory Andy Street currently on course to win re-election as West Midlands Mayor.
His victory would come in the wake of Tory victories in closely watched races in Hartlepool and Tees Valley, where the Conservatives won strong victories over Labour.
In Hartlepool they won the parliamentary seat for the first time since 1959, with the Tories winning a whopping 51.9% of the vote and a majority of 6,940, and in Tees Valley Ben Houchen scored a thumping win over Labour’s Jessie Jacobs with a whopping 72.8% of the vote.
In the West Midlands, incumbent Street has won 48.7% of the vote in the first round with second place Labour scoring just 39.7%. It will now go to second preferences, where the 13,568 votes of fifth place Reform UK would be enough to put Street over the top.
In 2017, Street won just 41.9% of the vote in the first round and beat Labour’s candidate by less than 1% when all was said and done.
The result would reveal continued Tory dominance in some of the most important areas of the UK, with the party of government strengthening their performance in Labour’s former northern heartlands while also remaining ahead in traditional swing areas.
Sky News’ Sam Coates, responding to the first round results, said: “In 2017 there were about 4,000 votes in it. You can see, it’s a much better margin now. Andy Street is just inches away from winning this race it looks like – you can’t say that for certain, until the counting is all done, but it doesn’t look like there are many votes to put him over the top…”
He went on to add that “it will be a disappointment for Labour. This is an area that Labour should be making gains in. Liam Byrne told you, not that long ago that he would win – easily. And the numbers at the moment make that look… not impossible, but quite close…”