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  United Kingdom General Elections: December 12th, 2019 (search mode)
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Author Topic: United Kingdom General Elections: December 12th, 2019  (Read 42241 times)
Cassius
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« on: October 29, 2019, 06:56:27 am »

So.

Tories will start off with the 10 point lead or so. Johnson will start bumbling his way around the country. He’ll find himself on the walkabout in Peterborough/Canterbury/Lincoln/Somesuch Place. A large concerned citizen will then waddle up to him and ask whether he’s ever had to clean up his own mother’s piss. He’ll mumble and stumble on camera which will be all over the news/social media. Labour will then pull even as the Tory vote erodes and Labour consolidates some of the anti-Tory vote.

Result: Labour minority
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Cassius
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« Reply #1 on: October 29, 2019, 08:04:38 am »

So.

Tories will start off with the 10 point lead or so. Johnson will start bumbling his way around the country. He’ll find himself on the walkabout in Peterborough/Canterbury/Lincoln/Somesuch Place. A large concerned citizen will then waddle up to him and ask whether he’s ever had to clean up his own mother’s piss. He’ll mumble and stumble on camera which will be all over the news/social media. Labour will then pull even as the Tory vote erodes and Labour consolidates some of the anti-Tory vote.

Result: Labour minority


I wish gambling was legal or possible through this site.

You are out of your mind if you think Labour is winning a minority government.

A hung parliament is the absolute best anyone can hope for.

I’m an American so I don’t have a dog in the fight but if I was a Brit, I’d be a moderate Labour voter (think Blair) but one who supports leave. I think Corbyn is horrific. But then again I think the Tories Brexit deal is awful as well, so it’s a lose lose all around.

I think you’re looking at a result approximately:

Conservative 340
Labour 200
Liberal Democrat 50
Brexit 5
Independent 16


Put me down for Burlington Bertie 100/30 on a Labour minority Wink

On a serious note, granted, if the current polls are correct (and note there is some variation between the polling companies, with the Tory lead bouncing around between 3-15 points) a Labour minority is unlikely. However, my somewhat facetious post above was a synecdoche for that fact that polls can easily change in the campaign, as of course they did in 2017, when the Tories blew a 20 point lead over Labour (which was considered even less of a threat back then than it is now). Whilst I’m sure Johnson, Swinson, the Media punditry class and galaxy brain psephologists would love for the election to polarize around the issue of leaving the EU, there are other issues out there, and most of those are not favourable  to the Tories.

The Tories have several big issues which I think will harm them significantly in the campaign. Firstly, they continue to be weighed down by the baggage of ‘austerity’, and no matter how much money they promise to spend to reverse it, they will always be outbid by Labour, who did this very effectively in 2017. I think if Corbyn and Labour roll out a similar manifesto to the one they did last time, this will be helpful in consolidating the anti-Tory vote.

Secondly, whilst he’s not quite as bad as Theresa May (who had the wit and charisma of my left shoe), I do not think Johnson will perform well on the campaign trail and I think he will be liable to get embroiled in embarrassing imbroglios similar to the one I mentioned in my previous post. Whilst he had this reputation as this great, charismatic campaigner when he was Mayor of London, I think the crucial thing in his favour was that there was, relatively speaking, a lot of goodwill for him (which has since evaporated), and he was running for a Mickey Mouse position with comparatively little power. Nothing I have seen of him over the last couple of years makes me believe that he will be able to stand up to scrutiny in a general election campaign.

Thirdly, unlike in the last election when the Tories largely consolidated the pro-Brexit vote and had no significant opposition to their right, in this election the Brexit party will be a very real problem. They may not be polling at 20% anymore, but even if they get half of that that will cause serious problems for the Tories. I was looking at the Scottish polls, and I noted that if you put the Tories and the Brexit party together (and I assume the Brexit party vote has come largely from the Tories in Scotland) then the Tories would be in the same place votes wise as they were in 2017. Of course, they’d still probably lose seats, as the SNP have also risen in the polls, but vote splitting between the Tories and the Brexit party will make that situation much worse. This applies to all of the country, not just Scotland, although I picked that out because it shows how the Brexit party can negatively impact the Tories even in fairly remainy type areas.

I just don’t believe the polls will stay in their current position - I think the Tories will bleed support and that Labour will once again manage to consolidate some of the anti-Tory vote, although probably not to the same extent as in 2017, which potentially opens the possibility of a Labour minority, of the Tories lose a significant number of seats and Labour either tread water or make some modest gains.
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Cassius
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« Reply #2 on: October 31, 2019, 05:57:12 pm »

Apparently Antoinette Sandbach (Ind, former Con; Eddisbury) has defected to the Lib Dems and will stand for re-election under that label. I'll be charitable and say she has 'no chance' rather than 'pffffttttt not a f!cking chance in hell'

Whilst it probably wasn’t an option for her given the timing of her defection, I’ll give props to her for re-contesting Eddisbury, as opposed to joining the other defecting poultry in the chicken run to London.
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Cassius
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« Reply #3 on: November 06, 2019, 09:51:31 am »

Alun Cairns, Welsh Secretary resigns as an MP for his role in squashing a rape trial.

His seat, the Vale of Glamorgen, is a bellwether that contains the working-class industrial resort town of Barry as well as more Tory inclined villages.
I believe he's only resigned as Welsh Secretary and still intends to stand in the election.

He wasn’t involved in collapsing the rape trial - he’s resigned because he wasn’t clear regarding how soon he knew about the individual in question’s involvement in collapsing the rape trial.

As I expected though, the avalanche of embarrassing trivia that will likely bury the Tories chances of winning a majority has begun.
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Cassius
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« Reply #4 on: November 08, 2019, 01:05:54 pm »
« Edited: November 08, 2019, 01:11:46 pm by Cassius »

The thing is though, every seat lost to the Lib Dems means that the Tories need to gain another seat from somewhere else to make up for it. At the moment, the Tories need to gain six seats  over their 2017 performance if they’re to get a working majority of just one seat (if we exclude the Speaker and a minimum of five abstentionist Shinners from the total Parliamentary tally), and that’s if they hold on to every single seat they currently possess, which seems unlikely. If we assume the Conservatives will lose a minimum of six seats, which may be being generous, in Scotland to the SNP, they’ll need twelve gains. There are plenty of Tory seats that are currently fairly vulnerable to the Lib Dems: Richmond Park, Brecon and Radnorshire (ignoring the change of allegiance resulting from the by election), Cheltenham and St Ives are some examples of seats where the Lib Dems were competitive in the last election. Moreover, whilst constituency polling should always be treated with a Carthaginian field full of salt, if those polls from Wokingham, Esher and South Cambridgeshire are on the money then there clearly previously safe Tory seats that the Lib Dems have a chance of snatching as well as their traditional marginals.

So, say the Tories lose ten to fifteen seats  to the Lib Dems (net of a potential Tory gain in North Norfolk), they’re going to have to find around twenty five gains from Labour (because they’re not making gains from the SNP, Plaid or the Greens at this election) in order to win a majority of one. Now I know there’s a meme about how the Tories are going to win scores of ‘northern’ (which under this particular definition seems to be any Labour seat north of Oxford and west of Bristol) seats from Labour as hardy white workin’ class battlers defect to the party in droves over Labour’s supposed perfidy re the EU referendum; the thing is, I’ll believe it when I see it. Media pundits and psephologists have been predicting this for years, either in the form of Tory or, earlier on, UKIP gains, and thus far it has barely transpired. The Tories did get enormous swings in many traditionally Labour constituencies last time round, but even then, in the election where they won more votes than in any since 1983, they still came up short, often by comfortable margins (as I understand it they only made six gains from Labour, at least two of which were partially helped by extremely lacklustre Labour incumbents).

Now, if the current state of the polls does hold and Labour do lose 10% of the vote nationwide, whilst the Tories hold at about 40%, then the psephologists dream of realigning British politics along American lines might, finally, come true. But that cannot be counted upon, and I think even in that scenario a lot of traditional Welsh, Midland and Northern Labour seats might prove stickier than one would imagine. This of course ignores the possibility that the Tories might lose additional seats to Labour (Chingford for instance), even if the result ends up being Tories at 40, Labour at 30. Therefore, if the Tories want to win a majority, it’s vital that they minimise their losses to the Lib Dems, in order to make a majority less reliant upon uncertain gains in Labour heartlands. This can best be done by a mixture of denying Swinson publicity and kicking the crap out of her and her party every time her tin-whistle of a voice box does manage to break through.
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Cassius
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« Reply #5 on: November 11, 2019, 01:57:37 pm »

As a political anomaly - a center left person who would be a Anti-Corbyn/Pro-Blair Labour/Leave voter in the UK and one who would have SUPPORTED Farage. I now find him to be a fraud. Not standing AND not contesting the whole nation is weak. How are you going to accomplish “Change Politics for Good” when you only send a message to half the establishment. He could’ve done great things for the UK by putting both the Torres and Labour on notice - instead he chickened out.

I think Nigel Farage is largely in politics for the craic and to keep himself in beer these days, so I wouldn’t have placed much faith in him to begin with. On the other hand, deciding to stand down against the Tories is probably among the more principled acts Farage has committed in recent years, given that it doesn’t do much for his career but nonetheless helps the Tories a bit in the election, making it more likely the UK will leave the EU in one form or another (which is supposed to be Farage’s main aim in politics).
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Cassius
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« Reply #6 on: November 13, 2019, 07:40:21 am »

https://youtu.be/97zPDojMWiQ

Is this satire? Also, enough of this ing ‘oven ready’ Brexit for the microwave mixed metaphor.

This is one of the problemswith Johnson - every time he gets asked a simple question about anything, trivial or non-trivial, outside of the context of PMQ’s, he looks and responds as if the question were ‘would you like to come with us sir? Down the station’.
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Cassius
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« Reply #7 on: November 14, 2019, 05:53:55 pm »

How come Boris gets heckled so much? Maybe I'm wrong, but it seems like it happens more often than in previous elections. And divisiveness over Brexit doesn't seem like the explanation because most of the heckling isn't actually about Brexit. The other party leaders, who are polling worse, don't seem to get heckled as much.

He’s the leader of the Conservative Party and Prime Minister, therefore he will be heckled. Happened to May and happened to Cameron. It’s kind of axiomatic for almost any Conservative politician that fifty percent of the electorate will hate you with a wild eyed, broiling passion that lends itself to heckling, whilst most of the remaining fifty percent will be, at best, agnostic in their attitude towards you.
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Cassius
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« Reply #8 on: November 16, 2019, 10:46:09 am »

For reasons that genuinely escape me, the LibDems seem to have endorsed the same "permanent government surplus" plan that went down like a cup of cold sick when Liz Kendall put it forward in the 2015 Labour contest.

As I understand, the proposal is for ‘current spending’ (welfare payments et al) to be covered by taxation, whilst ‘worthwhile investment’ will be funded by borrowing, so not quite a British version of a balanced budget amendment.

Of course, it’s just posturing for the ‘fIsCaLlY cOnSeRvAtIvE but SoCiAlLy LiBeRaL’ technocracy crowd that the Lib Dem’s have been gunning full bore for since Swinson took over. Not that most of them will understand the distinction between current and investment spending.
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Cassius
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« Reply #9 on: November 16, 2019, 11:18:21 am »

For reasons that genuinely escape me, the LibDems seem to have endorsed the same "permanent government surplus" plan that went down like a cup of cold sick when Liz Kendall put it forward in the 2015 Labour contest.

As I understand, the proposal is for ‘current spending’ (welfare payments et al) to be covered by taxation, whilst ‘worthwhile investment’ will be funded by borrowing, so not quite a British version of a balanced budget amendment.

Of course, it’s just posturing for the ‘fIsCaLlY cOnSeRvAtIvE but SoCiAlLy LiBeRaL’ technocracy crowd that the Lib Dem’s have been gunning full bore for since Swinson took over. Not that most of them will understand the distinction between current and investment spending.

That seems a rather reasonable stance to have with allowances for recessions.

From what I can see on current spending it’s a return to the Osbornist view of surpluses needing to be maintained regardless of the wider economic picture, so I guess no allowances for counter-cyclical expenditure. Also, the definition of investment can be argued - from what I’ve read it will only apply to capital projects in the Lib Dem package, even though many (not me, but I’m not an economist) would argue that education and even childcare could be viewed as a form of investment.
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Cassius
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« Reply #10 on: November 18, 2019, 09:19:55 am »
« Edited: November 18, 2019, 09:24:59 am by Cassius »

I would be extremely wary of writing off Corbyn as the dead weight that will drag Labour down to ignominious defeat, especially before the debates. He did well in his own right during the last campaign, in which most commentators automatically assumed that Labour were headed for their worst defeat since 1983/1931, mostly because of him, which obviously didn’t happen. Since then he has continued evolving into a fairly capable public speaker and debater, in contrast to the leadership elections where he won solely because he was the most left wing candidate in the race and Labour supporters didn’t like being flagellated by their failed leadership cadre.

I think the debates will be important in this campaign. They weren’t in 2017 (aside from the very fact of May’s absence illustrating her shortcomings as a campaigner), or in 2015 (because they were dull and safe bar Farage’s bust ups with the other party leaders and the audience), but were somewhat in 2010 (due to the novelty value and the fact they gave the Prince of Platitudes, Nick Clegg, a massive publicity boost). This time however you’ve got Johnson vs Corbyn, the Rumble in the Jungle, but with two semi-competent British politicians as opposed to Ali and Foreman. That head to head tomorrow and a constellation of other debates of various formats dibbly dobbling up until Election Day. These will get a lot of replay I expect (both online and on the TV).

This will be crucial, as we’re seeing Johnson, a generally weak public speaker and debater, being pitched against Corbyn, who is fairly steady, albeit not particularly entertaining, speaker, then subsequently being pitched into the bear pit of the multi-party debates. Although he may surprise me (as he has done in the past), I expect Johnson to perform very badly in these debates, as I think he will contrast poorly with Corbyn in the head to head, and will be pummelled to bits in the multi-party debate as every other leader will gang up on him. On the other hand, the debates probably offer Corbyn his best chance to put forward Labour’s policy agenda and to directly contrast it with Johnson’s lack of one (I also think Johnson’s attacks on the Labour agenda will probably fall flat), which could define the rest of the campaign and lead to a shift to Labour.

Or nothing could happen and the polls could remain stock still as everybody’s made up their minds that they hate the other lot. But I think the debates probably are Labour’s best chance to change the dynamic of the campaign.
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Cassius
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« Reply #11 on: November 19, 2019, 03:34:10 pm »

Well this is surreal
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Cassius
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« Reply #12 on: November 19, 2019, 03:55:12 pm »

This is gloriously shambolic.
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Cassius
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« Reply #13 on: November 28, 2019, 06:08:21 pm »

Channel 4 is a public entity just like the BBC with a duty to be impartial, and the government can amend its constitution as it sees fit. The BBC would not pull a silly stunt such as this. It is frankly odd that Gove would be considered unacceptable to represent the Tories in a debate on the climate, given that he has handled issues relating to that for the past two years and thus is probably the best briefed person within the party for that role - unless of course, like all the other debates, it’s simply a Potemkin debate not meant to address the issues in a serious way.

Nobody watches Channel 4 anyway.
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Cassius
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« Reply #14 on: November 28, 2019, 06:46:02 pm »

I mean, I’ve spent a lot of my life having to lick boots of one variety or another, so sycophancy has always become me.

Were I running the Tory campaign, I would have ignored it. In the grand scheme of things it’s bloody Channel 4, nobody watches it aside from Peep Show fans (not a particularly Tory friendly demographic I would’ve thought) waiting for an ageing Mitchell and Webb to roll in for series 168 of them pretending to still be 30 year olds. Making a fuss like this just creates another irritant for the press to rub into the Tory campaign.

Nonetheless, the fact is, the government, whether it be a Tory government or a Labour government, is entitled to set the parameters for Channel 4. There are plenty of other places for liberals and the left to go and get their kicks (the Guardian, the Independent, the New Statesman, that constellation of dubious “independent” media sites like Novara and many, many more). Were the Tories to clamp down on Channel 4’s ability to pose at ‘telling truth to power’ (retch), I find it highly unlikely that it would be the prelude to Gleichschaltung 2 Electric Boogaloo.

If Channel 4 were interested in running a serious debate on the environment, I doubt they would set it up as a debate between seven people with only an hour (about eight and a half minutes of speaking time per person!) for running time, which is what they did. Johnson was right to treat it with the contempt it deserved and was fairly generous in sending along Gove to participate at all.
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Cassius
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« Reply #15 on: December 01, 2019, 02:28:24 pm »

‘Jeremy will be an honest broker, not a stockbroker like Nigel’.

Ho ho... ho.

Laughter came there none.
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Cassius
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« Reply #16 on: December 03, 2019, 05:51:39 pm »

It seems that, as I predicted, the election has polarised into a straight Labour-Tory fight with some modest intervention from the Liberals. The trajectory of the polls is actually pretty similar to 2017, bar the Lib Dems being stickier than last time round - it wasn’t until the final week of the campaign when the really scary polls (for a Tory) putting Labour and the Tories neck and neck started to come out, so I wouldn’t rule it out this time either, given that there’s still nine days for Johnson to screw up big time.

As to the above post, austerity is essentially dead as a policy outlook, given that it almost killed off the Tory government in 2017, and the Conservatives have now committed to increasing public expenditure (not to the same extent as Labour of course). The ‘Singapore-on-Thames’ dream of the Raab-Patel-Hannan wing of the party will never be implemented, not just because it won’t work, but also because any party that tried to implement such a program in the UK probably wouldn’t make it into triple digits seats wise at the next election.
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