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  1. ITV Report

Jeremy Corbyn denies he is 'the problem' after Copeland by-election defeat

  • Video report by ITV News Deputy Political Editor Chris Ship

Jeremy Corbyn has said he is not 'the problem' after his party suffered a "disastrous" Copeland by-election defeat.

The Labour leader gave a forthright "no" when quizzed by ITV News Deputy Political Editor Chris Ship after delivering a speech on Friday.

Labour lost the Copeland by-election by over 2,000 votes - a result that piled the pressure on Mr Corbyn.

The party have not lost the seat in 80 years, and it was the first by-election gain by a sitting government in over 30 years.

Chris Ship asked: "I want to ask you specifically about Copeland, and since you've found out that you've lost a seat to a governing party for the first time since the Falklands war, have you - at any point this morning - looked in the mirror and asked yourself this question: Could the problem, actually, be me?"

To laughter, Jeremy Corbyn denied he had done so and when pushed on the matter, he refused to elaborate and said: "Thank you for your question".

Earlier, senior Labour backbencher David Winnick said the by-election result was a "disastrous" for the party and urged Mr Corbyn to resign.

He said: "The party is faced with the problem of a leader who is simply not acceptable to a large number of people who would normally vote Labour. That it is an obstacle and it would be wrong not to recognise that."

Theresa May praised Trudy Harrison's victory. Credit: Pool

Meanwhile the Prime Minister hailed newly-elected Conservative candidate Trudy Harrison for claiming an "astounding" victory in a Labour stronghold and said the result showed they were a Government "working for everyone".

She told her jubilant supporters in Millom: "This is an astounding victory for the Conservative Party, but also for the people of Copeland.

"You know, Labour have held this seat since the 1930s. A party in government hasn't won a by-election in a seat held by the opposition for 35 years.

"What we have seen from this victory is that this truly is a Government that is working for everyone and for every part of the country."

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