Thursday 28 November 2019

Emergency! Danger!

I was going to write about Corbyn damaged but, otherwise, has presented himself and the Labour Party quite well, that Swinson had recovered from her Leaders' Question Time low point but this recovery is qualified by lack of media reach, and Johnson has gone for safety first and whose reputation is beginning to have impact.

But, forget all that. The YouGov poll is a wake up call to optimists. It predicts what I was beginning to think in Scotland, but throughout the UK.

I thought in Scotland that the Conservatives would resist better than we expected and, as the Scottish National Party progressed, it would be Labour that would be squeezed.

It seems that, according to the YouGov poll of 100,000, this is so across the UK and, not only that but the Liberal Democrat experience of disappointment isgoing to be repeated. I could have written about the latter, and now it seems the indicators are this could well be so.

YouGov predicts: Conservatives 359, Labour 211, SNP 43, Liberal Democrats 13, Plaid Cymru 4, Green 1. However, there is a margin of error that leads to the Conservatives having a majority of one to a landslide - 328 to 385 for the Tories.

The Brexit Party burst its own tyres weeks back, and now they have deflated completely. They could still deprive the Tories of some eight seats, but utter collapse improves the Tories further. The view that it was the party to take on Labour seats seems now to be fading away, and the Leave vote will give itself to Johnson's Conservatives. The squeeze on all others will lead to Labour having Michael Foot 1983 numbers of MPs and this when the Tories haven't just won the Falklands War.

The Remain Alliance is likely to fail completely. Defectors to the Liberal Democrats won't win unless local factors operate. In essence, the unity of the leave vote and the weakness of Labour lead to this likely Tory majority result. The Liberal Democrats simply cannot organise the remain votes to itself, not unless it takes from an even weaker Labour and that means a bigger Tory majority.

I take the view that half a loaf is better than none, but we are up against a Labour Party that thinks if ideological purity is not possible then we may as well have the Tories. It is this logic that leads to us having the Tories.

We have two weeks to turn this around. It needs dedicated 'least worst' voting in every constituency with a marginal flavour. I notice that even once safe Labour East Hull, my constituency, is at risk of a Tory win - not Liberal Democrat - and this means I may have to swallow hard and hold my nose. It is a likely Labour win, but it used to be rock solid.

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