Supporters of Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn have been claiming that a photo (which can be seen above) of the 2005 Liverpool FA Cup celebrations are actually people attending a Jeremy Corbyn for Leader rally. Though the attendance at Corbyn’s rally was significant (estimates say around 5,000 attended), the photo in question contains around 300,000 people, with another estimated 750,000 lining the streets of the city. Or in different terms, every adult in Merseyside. See below for an actual photo of the rally:
Now, of the fifteen constituencies in Merseyside, all but one are Labour, with John Pugh’s Liberal Democrats in Southport forming the only opposition across the former county. And the average majority of the Members of Parliament there works out at over 20,000.
Could it really be said that a Corbyn rally in one of the most left-wing areas of the country is a true indicator of the way the country is leaning? With some constituencies not changing hands for over 50 years, some have argued that it is to be expected in Liverpool, an area where the far-left Militant Tendency group dominated in the 80s. This includes former President of the National Union of Students Wes Streeting, MP for Ilford North, who tweeted:
Michael Foot addressed packed out rallies in the 80s, too. Didn’t = votes. And he was a better leader. https://t.co/o9sFCzYp5q
— Wes Streeting MP (@wesstreeting) July 2, 2016
Though Corbyn is widely expected to win, the Saving Labour group, who back his rival Owen Smith, have undertaken research that suggests if the trend continues, by next May the Conservatives could have 48% of the vote, compared to Labour on a mere 20%. This would equate to a majority of more than 200 in the House of Commons – greater than that of Tony Blair during the 1997 New Labour landslide.