Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. Sign in or register to get started.

Swingers Club News – politicalbetting.com

SystemSystem Posts: 11,002
edited December 2023 in General
imageSwingers Club News – politicalbetting.com

No, you haven’t logged on to the wrong forum (well, maybe – only you know for sure).

Read the full story here

«134

Comments

  • CleitophonCleitophon Posts: 194
    edited December 2023
    When you add it all together, there is a profound dissatisfaction with populist politics based on grievance, outrage, and protest over single issues. I think there is a demand for stability and governance. Starmer's biggest selling point is exactly that he is a "human bollard". The ploy that hardline conservatives specialize in seems to be utterly out of favour.

    This is probably all part of the structural changes that come from the demographic erosion of the boomer segment and the rise of millenials as the most powerful voting block. Millenials are on average more likely to be university educated, left leaning remainers with tolerant views about ethnicity and gender identity, holding a grievance against tories who have done nothing but ridicule them for their coffee and avocado toast preferences and excluded them from fair housing. The millenials are only going to get stronger over the next terms of government. There are also moving out of London into neighbouring areas to shift the balance in traditional tory regions.

    The hard right boomer platform just isn't sustainable for a political party. My guess: this is a phase change in british politics. If the tories want to survive after being kicked out, they will have to ditch the boomers and rebrand conservativism for the millenials. (Nobody gives a rats arse about gen x of course)
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 67,045
    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    A couple of other points:

    1) It's not worth considering elections before 1885 for swing, due to the restricted electorate, and in many ways it isn't worth considering elections before 1918 due to the limited number of seats actually contested. In 1900, for example, 243 seats were returned unopposed.

    2) This also solves the problem with 1918!

    3) I would also note the swing in 1931 was fiendishly complicated as well, due to splits, electoral pacts and the economic crisis. So that swing is not much use as a comparison.

    4) The 1945 general election was not only the only election since 1900 held in wartime* but brought an end to the longest parliament since the dissolution of the Long Parliament in 1660. It was also the last election at which multiple voting was allowed. I don't think the swing there tells us much either.

    5) That means that there is only one election where there was a swing which - if replicated - would give Starmer's Labour a majority. The election concerned was 1997. That swing would give Starmer a majority of one.

    That's a formidable task. It's remarkable it's even possible, but even allowing for Rishi Sunak being more deluded than a Republican Senator it seems to me in the words of Lord Peter Wimsey an improbable-possible.

    *Technically 1918 was too but there was a ceasefire in effect, so I'm not counting that.
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 67,045
    However, if anyone did want to consider the raw swing in 1918, I would suggest the obvious thing to do would be to look at the one seat where an uncouponed Unionist stood against a Liberal.

    The seat was North East Fife.

    The swing was around 17%.

    The Liberal concerned lost his seat.

    His name? H H Asquith.
  • MonksfieldMonksfield Posts: 2,198
    edited December 2023

    When you add it all together, there is a profound dissatisfaction with populist politics based on grievance, outrage, and protest over single issues. I think there is a demand for stability and governance. Starmer's biggest selling point is exactly that he is a "human bollard". The ploy that hardline conservatives specialize in seems to be utterly out of favour.

    This is probably all part of the structural changes that come from the demographic erosion of the boomer segment and the rise of millenials as the most powerful voting block. Millenials are on average more likely to be university educated, left leaning remainers with tolerant views about ethnicity and gender identity, holding a grievance against tories who have done nothing but ridicule them for their coffee and avocado toast preferences and excluded them from fair housing. The millenials are only going to get stronger over the next terms of government. There are also moving out of London into neighbouring areas to shift the balance in traditional tory regions.

    The hard right boomer platform just isn't sustainable for a political party. My guess: this is a phase change in british politics. If the tories want to survive after being kicked out, they will have to ditch the boomers and rebrand conservativism for the millenials. (Nobody gives a rats arse about gen x of course)

    Always amazed how people just skip over Generation X. We’re basically about to enter the retirement phase and are a much more centre left cohort than the boomers were. And much less flakey than the millennials. A generation of cynics.

    The last generation to grow up without tech.
  • MonksfieldMonksfield Posts: 2,198
    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    .

    But the point made repeatedly by @Heathener with which I agree, is that 2019 was a false baseline. The Tories, led by a fairground huckster, offered the country magic beans. And the country took it.

    The real baseline in my view is much closer to 2015. Although clearly there are also demographic and psephological shifts in the electorate since then, not least increased volatility.

    The Tories are deeply unpopular, and whilst Labour are not themselves popular, the mood is for change. That will give Labour a decent majority.
  • GhedebravGhedebrav Posts: 3,000

    When you add it all together, there is a profound dissatisfaction with populist politics based on grievance, outrage, and protest over single issues. I think there is a demand for stability and governance. Starmer's biggest selling point is exactly that he is a "human bollard". The ploy that hardline conservatives specialize in seems to be utterly out of favour.

    This is probably all part of the structural changes that come from the demographic erosion of the boomer segment and the rise of millenials as the most powerful voting block. Millenials are on average more likely to be university educated, left leaning remainers with tolerant views about ethnicity and gender identity, holding a grievance against tories who have done nothing but ridicule them for their coffee and avocado toast preferences and excluded them from fair housing. The millenials are only going to get stronger over the next terms of government. There are also moving out of London into neighbouring areas to shift the balance in traditional tory regions.

    The hard right boomer platform just isn't sustainable for a political party. My guess: this is a phase change in british politics. If the tories want to survive after being kicked out, they will have to ditch the boomers and rebrand conservativism for the millenials. (Nobody gives a rats arse about gen x of course)

    Always amazed how people just skip over Generation X. We’re basically about to enter the retirement phase and are a much more centre left cohort than the boomers were. And much less flakey than the millennials. A generation of cynics.

    The last generation to grow up without tech.
    This is true, and tbh it gives the lie to whole generational shorthand thing.

    Depending when you start counting I am either a very late gen x or a very early millennial and don’t fit into the broad stereotype of either.
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 67,045

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    .

    But the point made repeatedly by @Heathener with which I agree, is that 2019 was a false baseline. The Tories, led by a fairground huckster, offered the country magic beans. And the country took it.

    The real baseline in my view is much closer to 2015. Although clearly there are also demographic and psephological shifts in the electorate since then, not least increased volatility.

    The Tories are deeply unpopular, and whilst Labour are not themselves popular, the mood is for change. That will give Labour a decent majority.
    She made this point, but she was not convincing (read - wrong) despite her dogmatic insistence in the face of all actual evidence to the contrary which she ignored every time it was pointed out to her.

    Actually the result in 2019 was very much what you would have expected based on 2017's Tory vote share once you eliminated the freak 7% or so who voted Labour in a 'stop Brexit' panic. The real story behind all that was the freakishness of 2017.

    2019 was, incidentally, very close to what the 1992 election would have looked like without tactical voting (Tory majority of 77). In a sense, that supports your point but because Labour starts from so much further behind in terms of seats they need to do that much more work to catch up.

    Another point is that an awful lot of former Labour areas have been drifting away from the party for years. Several reasons for this. One is housing. Many former Labour areas have much lower housing costs so are attracting the moderately affluent and ambitious middle classes who tend to vote Tory, while the cities dominated by the very poor and the liberal rich drift further Labour. Another is simply neglect. Labour have, for example, had a stranglehold on Stoke for years and the city's taken for granted, having useless party grandees like Tristram the Hunt imposed on them (whether they have fared better with Jonathan Gullis is another question)! Demographics and education could also be mentioned - the university seats continue to drift left, manufacturing seats right. Brexit catalysed many of these changes, but it didn't cause them. Morley and Outwood in 2010 and 2015 may be considered the canary in the coal mine. (Indeed, one of the stories of 2017 was how many near misses there were in Tory target seats due to Labour's late surge - Newcastle under Lyme 34 votes was an exceptionally close one, but without even thinking Wolverhampton South East and Wakefield the Tories were a bare 2000 votes from winning seats Labour considered safe).

    I am happy to use 2019 as a baseline and consider 2017 the freak. I could be wrong, but all the evidence points the same way.

    Which means Starmer still has a huge mountain to climb. Comparable to that of Cameron and Kinnock rather than Blair or Attlee.

    Edward Heath pulled it off, but under somewhat different circumstances. That remains the only peacetime election in the age of universal suffrage where a government with a double-digit majority has been replaced by a new government with a double digit majority of its own.
  • TimSTimS Posts: 9,309
    Ghedebrav said:

    When you add it all together, there is a profound dissatisfaction with populist politics based on grievance, outrage, and protest over single issues. I think there is a demand for stability and governance. Starmer's biggest selling point is exactly that he is a "human bollard". The ploy that hardline conservatives specialize in seems to be utterly out of favour.

    This is probably all part of the structural changes that come from the demographic erosion of the boomer segment and the rise of millenials as the most powerful voting block. Millenials are on average more likely to be university educated, left leaning remainers with tolerant views about ethnicity and gender identity, holding a grievance against tories who have done nothing but ridicule them for their coffee and avocado toast preferences and excluded them from fair housing. The millenials are only going to get stronger over the next terms of government. There are also moving out of London into neighbouring areas to shift the balance in traditional tory regions.

    The hard right boomer platform just isn't sustainable for a political party. My guess: this is a phase change in british politics. If the tories want to survive after being kicked out, they will have to ditch the boomers and rebrand conservativism for the millenials. (Nobody gives a rats arse about gen x of course)

    Always amazed how people just skip over Generation X. We’re basically about to enter the retirement phase and are a much more centre left cohort than the boomers were. And much less flakey than the millennials. A generation of cynics.

    The last generation to grow up without tech.
    This is true, and tbh it gives the lie to whole generational shorthand thing.

    Depending when you start counting I am either a very late gen x or a very early millennial and don’t fit into the broad stereotype of either.
    Gen X also being the generation that grew up under Thatcher and Major and then embraced Blair. Surely the key swing cohort. Boomers being essentially a pension trade union with a block vote for conservatives, and Millennials being radical puritans who are ready to enlist in the new model army.
  • MonksfieldMonksfield Posts: 2,198
    edited December 2023
    ydoethur said:

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    .

    But the point made repeatedly by @Heathener with which I agree, is that 2019 was a false baseline. The Tories, led by a fairground huckster, offered the country magic beans. And the country took it.

    The real baseline in my view is much closer to 2015. Although clearly there are also demographic and psephological shifts in the electorate since then, not least increased volatility.

    The Tories are deeply unpopular, and whilst Labour are not themselves popular, the mood is for change. That will give Labour a decent majority.
    She made this point, but she was not convincing (read - wrong) despite her dogmatic insistence in the face of all actual evidence to the contrary which she ignored every time it was pointed out to her.

    Actually the result in 2019 was very much what you would have expected based on 2017's Tory vote share once you eliminated the freak 7% or so who voted Labour in a 'stop Brexit' panic. The real story behind all that was the freakishness of 2017.

    2019 was, incidentally, very close to what the 1992 election would have looked like without tactical voting (Tory majority of 77). In a sense, that supports your point but because Labour starts from so much further behind in terms of seats they need to do that much more work to catch up.

    Another point is that an awful lot of former Labour areas have been drifting away from the party for years. Several reasons for this. One is housing. Many former Labour areas have much lower housing costs so are attracting the moderately affluent and ambitious middle classes who tend to vote Tory, while the cities dominated by the very poor and the liberal rich drift further Labour. Another is simply neglect. Labour have, for example, had a stranglehold on Stoke for years and the city's taken for granted, having useless party grandees like Tristram the Hunt imposed on them (whether they have fared better with Jonathan Gullis is another question)! Demographics and education could also be mentioned - the university seats continue to drift left, manufacturing seats right. Brexit catalysed many of these changes, but it didn't cause them. Morley and Outwood in 2010 and 2015 may be considered the canary in the coal mine. (Indeed, one of the stories of 2017 was how many near misses there were in Tory target seats due to Labour's late surge - Newcastle under Lyme 34 votes was an exceptionally close one, but without even thinking Wolverhampton South East and Wakefield the Tories were a bare 2000 votes from winning seats Labour considered safe).

    I am happy to use 2019 as a baseline and consider 2017 the freak. I could be wrong, but all the evidence points the same way.

    Which means Starmer still has a huge mountain to climb. Comparable to that of Cameron and Kinnock rather than Blair or Attlee.

    Edward Heath pulled it off, but under somewhat different circumstances. That remains the only peacetime election in the age of universal suffrage where a government with a double-digit majority has been replaced by a new government with a double digit majority of its own.
    I think what you may be missing is the extent to which what happened ‘oop north’ in 2019 will be replicated in parts of the south and suburbia in 2024. Blocks of voters who have been taken for granted for years can occur on either side of the political spectrum. People can see the lack of investment in our roads, our utilities and our high streets. They can see the crisis in social care and the NHS. Many of them (or their children) work for the public sector and have been poorly treated by the Government for years. And their 20-something kids are boomeranging home because they can’t afford to live anywhere else.

    I expect some massive shifts this election. And tactical voting to be back to 1997/2001 levels. Except in the SE, low water for the Tories will be some way below 1997 levels. How low? I don’t know but I expect to see some surprising seats change hands. Chelmsford? Tunbridge Wells?
  • algarkirkalgarkirk Posts: 10,455
    It's early and I am mathematically simple. Can I ask a question about swing.

    On two party swing Wiki says this:

    In the UK, a two-party swing (averaged model) is generally used, which adds one party's increase in share of the vote (expressed as a percentage point) to the percentage-point fall of another party, and divides the total by two.


    Why is the total divided by two?
  • FoxyFoxy Posts: 44,388
    Ghedebrav said:

    When you add it all together, there is a profound dissatisfaction with populist politics based on grievance, outrage, and protest over single issues. I think there is a demand for stability and governance. Starmer's biggest selling point is exactly that he is a "human bollard". The ploy that hardline conservatives specialize in seems to be utterly out of favour.

    This is probably all part of the structural changes that come from the demographic erosion of the boomer segment and the rise of millenials as the most powerful voting block. Millenials are on average more likely to be university educated, left leaning remainers with tolerant views about ethnicity and gender identity, holding a grievance against tories who have done nothing but ridicule them for their coffee and avocado toast preferences and excluded them from fair housing. The millenials are only going to get stronger over the next terms of government. There are also moving out of London into neighbouring areas to shift the balance in traditional tory regions.

    The hard right boomer platform just isn't sustainable for a political party. My guess: this is a phase change in british politics. If the tories want to survive after being kicked out, they will have to ditch the boomers and rebrand conservativism for the millenials. (Nobody gives a rats arse about gen x of course)

    Always amazed how people just skip over Generation X. We’re basically about to enter the retirement phase and are a much more centre left cohort than the boomers were. And much less flakey than the millennials. A generation of cynics.

    The last generation to grow up without tech.
    This is true, and tbh it gives the lie to whole generational shorthand thing.

    Depending when you start counting I am either a very late gen x or a very early millennial and don’t fit into the broad stereotype of either.
    Of course they are broad brush, I am technically amongst the youngest of the boomers, and Mrs Foxy the oldest of Gen X. Culturally we fit Gen X better as we don't really remember the Sixties, being too young.

    More in Common do break down voting in their tables by Generation rather than conventional bands, albeit starting Gen X in the late rather than mid Sixties.

  • I think we are going to see a very slow Tory recovery in 2024 based on flights to Rwanda, further tax cuts, a gradual relaxing of cost of living pressures and some culture war cut-through. I can see them polling low 30s based on a message of things are improving don’t let woke Labour ruin it. If that happens, Labour will not get a big majority. For me a hung Parliament, followed by some kind of Lab/LibDem pact, remains the likeliest outcome.
  • ydoethur said:

    However, if anyone did want to consider the raw swing in 1918, I would suggest the obvious thing to do would be to look at the one seat where an uncouponed Unionist stood against a Liberal.

    The seat was North East Fife.

    The swing was around 17%.

    The Liberal concerned lost his seat.

    His name? H H Asquith.

    Thanks for that fascinating piece of information. Proves once again what a unique place NE Fife is!
  • FoxyFoxy Posts: 44,388
    algarkirk said:

    It's early and I am mathematically simple. Can I ask a question about swing.

    On two party swing Wiki says this:

    In the UK, a two-party swing (averaged model) is generally used, which adds one party's increase in share of the vote (expressed as a percentage point) to the percentage-point fall of another party, and divides the total by two.


    Why is the total divided by two?

    Isn't it to avoid double counting?

    If a single voter switches from Con to Lab then the Lab lead over Con goes up by two.
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 67,045

    ydoethur said:

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    .

    But the point made repeatedly by @Heathener with which I agree, is that 2019 was a false baseline. The Tories, led by a fairground huckster, offered the country magic beans. And the country took it.

    The real baseline in my view is much closer to 2015. Although clearly there are also demographic and psephological shifts in the electorate since then, not least increased volatility.

    The Tories are deeply unpopular, and whilst Labour are not themselves popular, the mood is for change. That will give Labour a decent majority.
    She made this point, but she was not convincing (read - wrong) despite her dogmatic insistence in the face of all actual evidence to the contrary which she ignored every time it was pointed out to her.

    Actually the result in 2019 was very much what you would have expected based on 2017's Tory vote share once you eliminated the freak 7% or so who voted Labour in a 'stop Brexit' panic. The real story behind all that was the freakishness of 2017.

    2019 was, incidentally, very close to what the 1992 election would have looked like without tactical voting (Tory majority of 77). In a sense, that supports your point but because Labour starts from so much further behind in terms of seats they need to do that much more work to catch up.

    Another point is that an awful lot of former Labour areas have been drifting away from the party for years. Several reasons for this. One is housing. Many former Labour areas have much lower housing costs so are attracting the moderately affluent and ambitious middle classes who tend to vote Tory, while the cities dominated by the very poor and the liberal rich drift further Labour. Another is simply neglect. Labour have, for example, had a stranglehold on Stoke for years and the city's taken for granted, having useless party grandees like Tristram the Hunt imposed on them (whether they have fared better with Jonathan Gullis is another question)! Demographics and education could also be mentioned - the university seats continue to drift left, manufacturing seats right. Brexit catalysed many of these changes, but it didn't cause them. Morley and Outwood in 2010 and 2015 may be considered the canary in the coal mine. (Indeed, one of the stories of 2017 was how many near misses there were in Tory target seats due to Labour's late surge - Newcastle under Lyme 34 votes was an exceptionally close one, but without even thinking Wolverhampton South East and Wakefield the Tories were a bare 2000 votes from winning seats Labour considered safe).

    I am happy to use 2019 as a baseline and consider 2017 the freak. I could be wrong, but all the evidence points the same way.

    Which means Starmer still has a huge mountain to climb. Comparable to that of Cameron and Kinnock rather than Blair or Attlee.

    Edward Heath pulled it off, but under somewhat different circumstances. That remains the only peacetime election in the age of universal suffrage where a government with a double-digit majority has been replaced by a new government with a double digit majority of its own.
    I think what you may be missing is the extent to which what happened ‘oop north’ in 2019 will be replicated in parts of the south and suburbia in 2024. Blocks of voters who have been taken for granted for years can occur on either side of the political spectrum. People can see the lack of investment in our roads, our utilities and our high streets. They can see the crisis in social care. Many of them (or their children) work for the public sector and have been poorly treated by the Government for years. And their 20-something kids are boomeranging home because they can’t afford to live anywhere else.

    I expect some massive shifts this election. And tactical voting to be back to 1997/2001 levels. Except in the SE, low water for the Tories will be some way below 1997 levels. How low? I don’t know but I expect to see some surprising seats change hands. Chelmsford? Tunbridge Wells?
    I'm not 'missing' that effect but I do think you are exaggerating the likely impact. Certainly there is great dissatisfaction in the south but my sense in the West Country at least is there is also great suspicion of Starmer too. One of the few concrete policies he's put forward is VAT on school fees. Although this directly affects only a tiny proportion of the population, the message that sends is still one they don't like - that he will tax the wealthy and their symbols of status. (As it happens, I think the general idea is right and the specific policy is foolish and likely to end up attacking the wrong target, but that's another story.)

    I don't therefore expect to see substantial numbers of Labour gains in the south outside the main university areas. Maybe 20-30 in total. The Liberal Democrats maybe the same. Enough to deny the Tories a majority, but not to put Labour in landslide territory.

    In the north? Hard to tell. There will be some seats that return to Labour, but others may even drift further away from it. It wouldn't surprise me to see a Tory hold in Stafford and a Labour gain in NuL, for example, although on paper the seats and majorities are similar.

    But let's say Labour pick up another 40 seats in the north and Wales, and 25 in Scotland. That's around 100 gained. That would be an impressive achievement and requires a swing of around 8%, which would be the second largest swing of any election since 1945 (in fact it's not far off double - 60% - the next largest of 5% in 1979).

    That's still very far short of a majority.
  • algarkirkalgarkirk Posts: 10,455

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    .

    But the point made repeatedly by @Heathener with which I agree, is that 2019 was a false baseline. The Tories, led by a fairground huckster, offered the country magic beans. And the country took it.

    The real baseline in my view is much closer to 2015. Although clearly there are also demographic and psephological shifts in the electorate since then, not least increased volatility.

    The Tories are deeply unpopular, and whilst Labour are not themselves popular, the mood is for change. That will give Labour a decent majority.
    The baseline depends on whether you regard its importance as a fact or a value. It is definitional that the figures of the last election are what they are. If you want a factual baseline, there it is. The fact that the election was odd (get Brexit done by a used car salesman versus Hamas's friend) is merely an example of all elections being unique.

    If you want a predictive, value based baseline - somewhere where it is most rational to start assessing what might change and why in 2024 - I think that you run the risk of confusing fact and judgement.

    Yes, there might be a record shift from 2019 to 2024, but the future very obviously does not keep repeating the past and records are there to be broken.
  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 31,865
    Morning All,
    I don’t see all that many people these days, but one very common grumble is the state of the roads, especially the number, and depth, of potholes.

    Incidentally, what Generation am I; born before WWII. Professional qualification, not degree, although required a couple of years full-time study.
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 67,045

    ydoethur said:

    However, if anyone did want to consider the raw swing in 1918, I would suggest the obvious thing to do would be to look at the one seat where an uncouponed Unionist stood against a Liberal.

    The seat was North East Fife.

    The swing was around 17%.

    The Liberal concerned lost his seat.

    His name? H H Asquith.

    Thanks for that fascinating piece of information. Proves once again what a unique place NE Fife is!
    I find it was actually East Fife, on checking, but it was similar boundaries to NE Fife.

    The bizarre irony of that particular election was not only was Sprot not couponed but Unionist leader Bonar Law actually turned up to campaign for Asquith.

    And Asquith still got absolutely thumped.
  • FoxyFoxy Posts: 44,388
    ydoethur said:

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    .

    But the point made repeatedly by @Heathener with which I agree, is that 2019 was a false baseline. The Tories, led by a fairground huckster, offered the country magic beans. And the country took it.

    The real baseline in my view is much closer to 2015. Although clearly there are also demographic and psephological shifts in the electorate since then, not least increased volatility.

    The Tories are deeply unpopular, and whilst Labour are not themselves popular, the mood is for change. That will give Labour a decent majority.
    Edward Heath pulled it off, but under somewhat different circumstances. That remains the only peacetime election in the age of universal suffrage where a government with a double-digit majority has been replaced by a new government with a double digit majority of its own.
    Also the only single term government since the war. 1970 was odd in several ways.

    All elections have their own unique circumstances, but both 2017 and 2019 were particularly odd. I think 2015 was our last "normal" election, though even that was odd due to the Coalition.

  • Scott_xPScott_xP Posts: 32,793

    I think we are going to see a very slow Tory recovery in 2024 based on flights to Rwanda, further tax cuts, a gradual relaxing of cost of living pressures and some culture war cut-through.

    Let us assume, for a moment, that a flight to Rwanda actually takes off.

    If a single person on such a flight makes their way back to Calais the entire 400 million pound scheme is a bust.

    Jeremy Clarkson jokes about it in his recent column.
  • FoxyFoxy Posts: 44,388

    Morning All,
    I don’t see all that many people these days, but one very common grumble is the state of the roads, especially the number, and depth, of potholes.

    Incidentally, what Generation am I; born before WWII. Professional qualification, not degree, although required a couple of years full-time study.

    That would be "The Silent Generation", though glad to hear from you!
  • algarkirkalgarkirk Posts: 10,455

    I think we are going to see a very slow Tory recovery in 2024 based on flights to Rwanda, further tax cuts, a gradual relaxing of cost of living pressures and some culture war cut-through. I can see them polling low 30s based on a message of things are improving don’t let woke Labour ruin it. If that happens, Labour will not get a big majority. For me a hung Parliament, followed by some kind of Lab/LibDem pact, remains the likeliest outcome.

    I cannot see how the Rwanda Bill becomes law (and then overcomes the admin processes and subsequent challenges which cannot start until it becomes law) before the next election in a year or less from now. This would rely on it sailing through the Lords and then fairly rapid disposal by the courts. There are obvious issues that must go to the SC first. The time table is impossible, so there won't be flights to Rwanda.
  • ydoethur said:

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    .

    But the point made repeatedly by @Heathener with which I agree, is that 2019 was a false baseline. The Tories, led by a fairground huckster, offered the country magic beans. And the country took it.

    The real baseline in my view is much closer to 2015. Although clearly there are also demographic and psephological shifts in the electorate since then, not least increased volatility.

    The Tories are deeply unpopular, and whilst Labour are not themselves popular, the mood is for change. That will give Labour a decent majority.
    She made this point, but she was not convincing (read - wrong) despite her dogmatic insistence in the face of all actual evidence to the contrary which she ignored every time it was pointed out to her.

    Actually the result in 2019 was very much what you would have expected based on 2017's Tory vote share once you eliminated the freak 7% or so who voted Labour in a 'stop Brexit' panic. The real story behind all that was the freakishness of 2017.

    2019 was, incidentally, very close to what the 1992 election would have looked like without tactical voting (Tory majority of 77). In a sense, that supports your point but because Labour starts from so much further behind in terms of seats they need to do that much more work to catch up.

    Another point is that an awful lot of former Labour areas have been drifting away from the party for years. Several reasons for this. One is housing. Many former Labour areas have much lower housing costs so are attracting the moderately affluent and ambitious middle classes who tend to vote Tory, while the cities dominated by the very poor and the liberal rich drift further Labour. Another is simply neglect. Labour have, for example, had a stranglehold on Stoke for years and the city's taken for granted, having useless party grandees like Tristram the Hunt imposed on them (whether they have fared better with Jonathan Gullis is another question)! Demographics and education could also be mentioned - the university seats continue to drift left, manufacturing seats right. Brexit catalysed many of these changes, but it didn't cause them. Morley and Outwood in 2010 and 2015 may be considered the canary in the coal mine. (Indeed, one of the stories of 2017 was how many near misses there were in Tory target seats due to Labour's late surge - Newcastle under Lyme 34 votes was an exceptionally close one, but without even thinking Wolverhampton South East and Wakefield the Tories were a bare 2000 votes from winning seats Labour considered safe).

    I am happy to use 2019 as a baseline and consider 2017 the freak. I could be wrong, but all the evidence points the same way.

    Which means Starmer still has a huge mountain to climb. Comparable to that of Cameron and Kinnock rather than Blair or Attlee.

    Edward Heath pulled it off, but under somewhat different circumstances. That remains the only peacetime election in the age of universal suffrage where a government with a double-digit majority has been replaced by a new government with a double digit majority of its own.
    I think what you may be missing is the extent to which what happened ‘oop north’ in 2019 will be replicated in parts of the south and suburbia in 2024. Blocks of voters who have been taken for granted for years can occur on either side of the political spectrum. People can see the lack of investment in our roads, our utilities and our high streets. They can see the crisis in social care and the NHS. Many of them (or their children) work for the public sector and have been poorly treated by the Government for years. And their 20-something kids are boomeranging home because they can’t afford to live anywhere else.

    I expect some massive shifts this election. And tactical voting to be back to 1997/2001 levels. Except in the SE, low water for the Tories will be some way below 1997 levels. How low? I don’t know but I expect to see some surprising seats change hands. Chelmsford? Tunbridge Wells?
    I’d keep an eye on the Jurassic Coast - constituencies from Bournemouth to Exeter. The demographics are changing very quickly. A lot of retiring late Boomers and downsizing Xers are moving in as the Blue Rinse generation passes into memory. Basically, people like me and my wife are buying the places previously occupied by stalwarts of the Rotary Club and WI. At the same time, we are seeing big cuts in public services, long waits for GP appointments, hospitality struggling because of a lack of labour supply and a constant flow of raw sewage into the rivers and sea. Tory seats down here are going to become a lot scarcer. There may not be any by the mid-2030s, unless the Tories have a serious rethink about their trajectory.

  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 67,045
    edited December 2023
    Foxy said:

    ydoethur said:

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    .

    But the point made repeatedly by @Heathener with which I agree, is that 2019 was a false baseline. The Tories, led by a fairground huckster, offered the country magic beans. And the country took it.

    The real baseline in my view is much closer to 2015. Although clearly there are also demographic and psephological shifts in the electorate since then, not least increased volatility.

    The Tories are deeply unpopular, and whilst Labour are not themselves popular, the mood is for change. That will give Labour a decent majority.
    Edward Heath pulled it off, but under somewhat different circumstances. That remains the only peacetime election in the age of universal suffrage where a government with a double-digit majority has been replaced by a new government with a double digit majority of its own.
    Also the only single term government since the war. 1970 was odd in several ways.

    All elections have their own unique circumstances, but both 2017 and 2019 were particularly odd. I think 2015 was our last "normal" election, though even that was odd due to the Coalition.

    But here again we come back to my point - those people arguing for a big Labour win are *assuming* 2019 was odd, and a 'get Brexit done' election. Having burrowed deep into the data it simply doesn't support that conclusion. Not forgetting that Brexit itself wasn't just about leaving the EU although it should have been.

    Therefore, those who dismiss 2019 as a baseline (to reiterate) are making a serious error. It is a perfectly acceptable baseline and we again come back to Starmer has a mountain to climb.

    As we see by the goalpost moving on here. First 2019 wasn't useful. Then I don't understand the depth of anger in the south...
  • SouthamObserverSouthamObserver Posts: 38,901
    edited December 2023
    Scott_xP said:

    I think we are going to see a very slow Tory recovery in 2024 based on flights to Rwanda, further tax cuts, a gradual relaxing of cost of living pressures and some culture war cut-through.

    Let us assume, for a moment, that a flight to Rwanda actually takes off.

    If a single person on such a flight makes their way back to Calais the entire 400 million pound scheme is a bust.

    Jeremy Clarkson jokes about it in his recent column.

    That’s an interesting point. Not one I’d previously thought of. However, I do think there’s a potential clawback from Reform for the Tories based on the ecstasy of the right wing press as flights start to take off. A couple of points, perhaps. There will be a few more available based on an improving standard of living narrative and general culture war stuff.

  • JonathanJonathan Posts: 20,901
    Imagine what would happen to British politics if the Tories somehow manage to hang on as the Largest party or a small majority. It’s dystopian.
  • Jonathan said:

    Imagine what would happen to British politics if the Tories somehow manage to hang on as the Largest party or a small majority. It’s dystopian.

    The Tory right will be furious.

  • BenpointerBenpointer Posts: 31,492
    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    A couple of other points:

    1) It's not worth considering elections before 1885 for swing, due to the restricted electorate, and in many ways it isn't worth considering elections before 1918 due to the limited number of seats actually contested. In 1900, for example, 243 seats were returned unopposed.

    2) This also solves the problem with 1918!

    3) I would also note the swing in 1931 was fiendishly complicated as well, due to splits, electoral pacts and the economic crisis. So that swing is not much use as a comparison.

    4) The 1945 general election was not only the only election since 1900 held in wartime* but brought an end to the longest parliament since the dissolution of the Long Parliament in 1660. It was also the last election at which multiple voting was allowed. I don't think the swing there tells us much either.

    5) That means that there is only one election where there was a swing which - if replicated - would give Starmer's Labour a majority. The election concerned was 1997. That swing would give Starmer a majority of one.

    That's a formidable task. It's remarkable it's even possible, but even allowing for Rishi Sunak being more deluded than a Republican Senator it seems to me in the words of Lord Peter Wimsey an improbable-possible.

    *Technically 1918 was too but there was a ceasefire in effect, so I'm not counting that.

    All very good points.

    I sway between thinking a) Labour can't possibly win a majority given the swing required, and b) the Conservatives can't possibly stop them given the past two years' poll and the ineptitude of the current leadership.

    Truth is, none of us knows. A real-life drama will unfold next year.
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 67,045
    edited December 2023

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    A couple of other points:

    1) It's not worth considering elections before 1885 for swing, due to the restricted electorate, and in many ways it isn't worth considering elections before 1918 due to the limited number of seats actually contested. In 1900, for example, 243 seats were returned unopposed.

    2) This also solves the problem with 1918!

    3) I would also note the swing in 1931 was fiendishly complicated as well, due to splits, electoral pacts and the economic crisis. So that swing is not much use as a comparison.

    4) The 1945 general election was not only the only election since 1900 held in wartime* but brought an end to the longest parliament since the dissolution of the Long Parliament in 1660. It was also the last election at which multiple voting was allowed. I don't think the swing there tells us much either.

    5) That means that there is only one election where there was a swing which - if replicated - would give Starmer's Labour a majority. The election concerned was 1997. That swing would give Starmer a majority of one.

    That's a formidable task. It's remarkable it's even possible, but even allowing for Rishi Sunak being more deluded than a Republican Senator it seems to me in the words of Lord Peter Wimsey an improbable-possible.

    *Technically 1918 was too but there was a ceasefire in effect, so I'm not counting that.

    All very good points.

    I sway between thinking a) Labour can't possibly win a majority given the swing required, and b) the Conservatives can't possibly stop them given the past two years' poll and the ineptitude of the current leadership.

    Truth is, none of us knows. A real-life drama will unfold next year.
    True, but if we gave up speculating how would @TSE know where to put his money to pay for more pairs of shoes?

    (I enjoyed the header, by the way - was it you or TSE wrote the headline?)
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 67,045

    Jonathan said:

    Imagine what would happen to British politics if the Tories somehow manage to hang on as the Largest party or a small majority. It’s dystopian.

    The Tory right will be furious.

    Dear oh dear. We can't have that, given what a placid, amiable bunch they normally are.
  • BenpointerBenpointer Posts: 31,492

    ydoethur said:

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    .

    But the point made repeatedly by @Heathener with which I agree, is that 2019 was a false baseline. The Tories, led by a fairground huckster, offered the country magic beans. And the country took it.

    The real baseline in my view is much closer to 2015. Although clearly there are also demographic and psephological shifts in the electorate since then, not least increased volatility.

    The Tories are deeply unpopular, and whilst Labour are not themselves popular, the mood is for change. That will give Labour a decent majority.
    She made this point, but she was not convincing (read - wrong) despite her dogmatic insistence in the face of all actual evidence to the contrary which she ignored every time it was pointed out to her.

    Actually the result in 2019 was very much what you would have expected based on 2017's Tory vote share once you eliminated the freak 7% or so who voted Labour in a 'stop Brexit' panic. The real story behind all that was the freakishness of 2017.

    2019 was, incidentally, very close to what the 1992 election would have looked like without tactical voting (Tory majority of 77). In a sense, that supports your point but because Labour starts from so much further behind in terms of seats they need to do that much more work to catch up.

    Another point is that an awful lot of former Labour areas have been drifting away from the party for years. Several reasons for this. One is housing. Many former Labour areas have much lower housing costs so are attracting the moderately affluent and ambitious middle classes who tend to vote Tory, while the cities dominated by the very poor and the liberal rich drift further Labour. Another is simply neglect. Labour have, for example, had a stranglehold on Stoke for years and the city's taken for granted, having useless party grandees like Tristram the Hunt imposed on them (whether they have fared better with Jonathan Gullis is another question)! Demographics and education could also be mentioned - the university seats continue to drift left, manufacturing seats right. Brexit catalysed many of these changes, but it didn't cause them. Morley and Outwood in 2010 and 2015 may be considered the canary in the coal mine. (Indeed, one of the stories of 2017 was how many near misses there were in Tory target seats due to Labour's late surge - Newcastle under Lyme 34 votes was an exceptionally close one, but without even thinking Wolverhampton South East and Wakefield the Tories were a bare 2000 votes from winning seats Labour considered safe).

    I am happy to use 2019 as a baseline and consider 2017 the freak. I could be wrong, but all the evidence points the same way.

    Which means Starmer still has a huge mountain to climb. Comparable to that of Cameron and Kinnock rather than Blair or Attlee.

    Edward Heath pulled it off, but under somewhat different circumstances. That remains the only peacetime election in the age of universal suffrage where a government with a double-digit majority has been replaced by a new government with a double digit majority of its own.
    I think what you may be missing is the extent to which what happened ‘oop north’ in 2019 will be replicated in parts of the south and suburbia in 2024. Blocks of voters who have been taken for granted for years can occur on either side of the political spectrum. People can see the lack of investment in our roads, our utilities and our high streets. They can see the crisis in social care and the NHS. Many of them (or their children) work for the public sector and have been poorly treated by the Government for years. And their 20-something kids are boomeranging home because they can’t afford to live anywhere else.

    I expect some massive shifts this election. And tactical voting to be back to 1997/2001 levels. Except in the SE, low water for the Tories will be some way below 1997 levels. How low? I don’t know but I expect to see some surprising seats change hands. Chelmsford? Tunbridge Wells?
    I’d keep an eye on the Jurassic Coast - constituencies from Bournemouth to Exeter. The demographics are changing very quickly. A lot of retiring late Boomers and downsizing Xers are moving in as the Blue Rinse generation passes into memory. Basically, people like me and my wife are buying the places previously occupied by stalwarts of the Rotary Club and WI. At the same time, we are seeing big cuts in public services, long waits for GP appointments, hospitality struggling because of a lack of labour supply and a constant flow of raw sewage into the rivers and sea. Tory seats down here are going to become a lot scarcer. There may not be any by the mid-2030s, unless the Tories have a serious rethink about their trajectory.

    The Jurassic Coast is losing its fossils? Don't tell UNESCO!
  • bondegezoubondegezou Posts: 7,435
    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    A couple of other points:

    1) It's not worth considering elections before 1885 for swing, due to the restricted electorate, and in many ways it isn't worth considering elections before 1918 due to the limited number of seats actually contested. In 1900, for example, 243 seats were returned unopposed.

    2) This also solves the problem with 1918!

    3) I would also note the swing in 1931 was fiendishly complicated as well, due to splits, electoral pacts and the economic crisis. So that swing is not much use as a comparison.

    4) The 1945 general election was not only the only election since 1900 held in wartime* but brought an end to the longest parliament since the dissolution of the Long Parliament in 1660. It was also the last election at which multiple voting was allowed. I don't think the swing there tells us much either.

    5) That means that there is only one election where there was a swing which - if replicated - would give Starmer's Labour a majority. The election concerned was 1997. That swing would give Starmer a majority of one.

    That's a formidable task. It's remarkable it's even possible, but even allowing for Rishi Sunak being more deluded than a Republican Senator it seems to me in the words of Lord Peter Wimsey an improbable-possible.

    *Technically 1918 was too but there was a ceasefire in effect, so I'm not counting that.

    Your thesis is that historical precedent (or lack thereof) trumps polling. I am sceptical. I think polling trumps historical precedent.

    There’s no magic about historical precedent. It’s just what has happened to happen. There isn’t a mechanism of action by which what has happened before constrains what will happen next time. If very large numbers of people are saying they will vote Labour, and only small numbers say Conservative, I think we have to believe them.
  • JonathanJonathan Posts: 20,901

    Jonathan said:

    Imagine what would happen to British politics if the Tories somehow manage to hang on as the Largest party or a small majority. It’s dystopian.

    The Tory right will be furious.

    If they once again hold the balance of power they will be utterly delighted.
  • FoxyFoxy Posts: 44,388

    ydoethur said:

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    .

    But the point made repeatedly by @Heathener with which I agree, is that 2019 was a false baseline. The Tories, led by a fairground huckster, offered the country magic beans. And the country took it.

    The real baseline in my view is much closer to 2015. Although clearly there are also demographic and psephological shifts in the electorate since then, not least increased volatility.

    The Tories are deeply unpopular, and whilst Labour are not themselves popular, the mood is for change. That will give Labour a decent majority.
    She made this point, but she was not convincing (read - wrong) despite her dogmatic insistence in the face of all actual evidence to the contrary which she ignored every time it was pointed out to her.

    Actually the result in 2019 was very much what you would have expected based on 2017's Tory vote share once you eliminated the freak 7% or so who voted Labour in a 'stop Brexit' panic. The real story behind all that was the freakishness of 2017.

    2019 was, incidentally, very close to what the 1992 election would have looked like without tactical voting (Tory majority of 77). In a sense, that supports your point but because Labour starts from so much further behind in terms of seats they need to do that much more work to catch up.

    Another point is that an awful lot of former Labour areas have been drifting away from the party for years. Several reasons for this. One is housing. Many former Labour areas have much lower housing costs so are attracting the moderately affluent and ambitious middle classes who tend to vote Tory, while the cities dominated by the very poor and the liberal rich drift further Labour. Another is simply neglect. Labour have, for example, had a stranglehold on Stoke for years and the city's taken for granted, having useless party grandees like Tristram the Hunt imposed on them (whether they have fared better with Jonathan Gullis is another question)! Demographics and education could also be mentioned - the university seats continue to drift left, manufacturing seats right. Brexit catalysed many of these changes, but it didn't cause them. Morley and Outwood in 2010 and 2015 may be considered the canary in the coal mine. (Indeed, one of the stories of 2017 was how many near misses there were in Tory target seats due to Labour's late surge - Newcastle under Lyme 34 votes was an exceptionally close one, but without even thinking Wolverhampton South East and Wakefield the Tories were a bare 2000 votes from winning seats Labour considered safe).

    I am happy to use 2019 as a baseline and consider 2017 the freak. I could be wrong, but all the evidence points the same way.

    Which means Starmer still has a huge mountain to climb. Comparable to that of Cameron and Kinnock rather than Blair or Attlee.

    Edward Heath pulled it off, but under somewhat different circumstances. That remains the only peacetime election in the age of universal suffrage where a government with a double-digit majority has been replaced by a new government with a double digit majority of its own.
    I think what you may be missing is the extent to which what happened ‘oop north’ in 2019 will be replicated in parts of the south and suburbia in 2024. Blocks of voters who have been taken for granted for years can occur on either side of the political spectrum. People can see the lack of investment in our roads, our utilities and our high streets. They can see the crisis in social care and the NHS. Many of them (or their children) work for the public sector and have been poorly treated by the Government for years. And their 20-something kids are boomeranging home because they can’t afford to live anywhere else.

    I expect some massive shifts this election. And tactical voting to be back to 1997/2001 levels. Except in the SE, low water for the Tories will be some way below 1997 levels. How low? I don’t know but I expect to see some surprising seats change hands. Chelmsford? Tunbridge Wells?
    I’d keep an eye on the Jurassic Coast - constituencies from Bournemouth to Exeter. The demographics are changing very quickly. A lot of retiring late Boomers and downsizing Xers are moving in as the Blue Rinse generation passes into memory. Basically, people like me and my wife are buying the places previously occupied by stalwarts of the Rotary Club and WI. At the same time, we are seeing big cuts in public services, long waits for GP appointments, hospitality struggling because of a lack of labour supply and a constant flow of raw sewage into the rivers and sea. Tory seats down here are going to become a lot scarcer. There may not be any by the mid-2030s, unless the Tories have a serious rethink about their trajectory.

    I think that is a good point. One of the striking changes over the last 2 decades is how politics has shifted by age, with the oldies being much more strongly Conservative over time.

    That may well be reversing, partly due to new cohorts of retirees from younger generations, but also reflecting the Labour lead. Starmers swing applies to all age ranges, it isn't just based on the youngsters.
  • algarkirkalgarkirk Posts: 10,455
    edited December 2023
    Jonathan said:

    Imagine what would happen to British politics if the Tories somehow manage to hang on as the Largest party or a small majority. It’s dystopian.

    I can't see anyone at all (including the DUP) propping up a minority Tory government after GE 2024. So there is a small but significant area of result in which there is absolute chaos. There is a larger area of result in which the Tories are the largest party but the rainbow centre left are the clear majority and modified chaos.

    So (this won't happen of course but) if the Tories lost 65 seats, all to the LDs and Labour stayed on 202, Tories would have 300 seats, 100 more than Labour and Labour would lead the next government. But not for long before another election. What larks.

  • Briefly off-topic (sorry): trains. Lots of angry people on Twitter with pictures of absurdly overcrowded trains. Cross Country especially - who recently were instructed to retire their HST fleet by the government.

    We have people struggling to travel - with the negative economic impact of that - and train manufacturers on the verge of closure due to the lack of orders.

    If this country worked, supply would be increased to match demand…
  • BenpointerBenpointer Posts: 31,492

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    A couple of other points:

    1) It's not worth considering elections before 1885 for swing, due to the restricted electorate, and in many ways it isn't worth considering elections before 1918 due to the limited number of seats actually contested. In 1900, for example, 243 seats were returned unopposed.

    2) This also solves the problem with 1918!

    3) I would also note the swing in 1931 was fiendishly complicated as well, due to splits, electoral pacts and the economic crisis. So that swing is not much use as a comparison.

    4) The 1945 general election was not only the only election since 1900 held in wartime* but brought an end to the longest parliament since the dissolution of the Long Parliament in 1660. It was also the last election at which multiple voting was allowed. I don't think the swing there tells us much either.

    5) That means that there is only one election where there was a swing which - if replicated - would give Starmer's Labour a majority. The election concerned was 1997. That swing would give Starmer a majority of one.

    That's a formidable task. It's remarkable it's even possible, but even allowing for Rishi Sunak being more deluded than a Republican Senator it seems to me in the words of Lord Peter Wimsey an improbable-possible.

    *Technically 1918 was too but there was a ceasefire in effect, so I'm not counting that.

    Your thesis is that historical precedent (or lack thereof) trumps polling. I am sceptical. I think polling trumps historical precedent.

    There’s no magic about historical precedent. It’s just what has happened to happen. There isn’t a mechanism of action by which what has happened before constrains what will happen next time. If very large numbers of people are saying they will vote Labour, and only small numbers say Conservative, I think we have to believe them.
    That's true but it is often interesting, sometimes informative, and occasionally salutary to look back at what's happened in the past.
  • Peter_the_PunterPeter_the_Punter Posts: 13,266
    edited December 2023

    Morning All,
    I don’t see all that many people these days, but one very common grumble is the state of the roads, especially the number, and depth, of potholes.

    Incidentally, what Generation am I; born before WWII. Professional qualification, not degree, although required a couple of years full-time study.

    May I ask where you live, OKC?

    I am in Gloucestershire, which must have one of the worst potholes problems in the country. I am close to the border with Worcestershire, and when I drive north to Evesham, as I often do, I know as soon as I leave Gloucestershire by the state of the roads. It is exactly the same experience as I once had when driving from Berlin into the recently absorbed East Germany. The tires told you immediately when you crossed the old border.

    Why would Gloucestershire roads be so much worse than surrounding counties? Is the county really more starved of funds than others?

    Fwiw, it is a Conservative County Council, though that may change soon.
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 67,045

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    A couple of other points:

    1) It's not worth considering elections before 1885 for swing, due to the restricted electorate, and in many ways it isn't worth considering elections before 1918 due to the limited number of seats actually contested. In 1900, for example, 243 seats were returned unopposed.

    2) This also solves the problem with 1918!

    3) I would also note the swing in 1931 was fiendishly complicated as well, due to splits, electoral pacts and the economic crisis. So that swing is not much use as a comparison.

    4) The 1945 general election was not only the only election since 1900 held in wartime* but brought an end to the longest parliament since the dissolution of the Long Parliament in 1660. It was also the last election at which multiple voting was allowed. I don't think the swing there tells us much either.

    5) That means that there is only one election where there was a swing which - if replicated - would give Starmer's Labour a majority. The election concerned was 1997. That swing would give Starmer a majority of one.

    That's a formidable task. It's remarkable it's even possible, but even allowing for Rishi Sunak being more deluded than a Republican Senator it seems to me in the words of Lord Peter Wimsey an improbable-possible.

    *Technically 1918 was too but there was a ceasefire in effect, so I'm not counting that.

    Your thesis is that historical precedent (or lack thereof) trumps polling. I am sceptical. I think polling trumps historical precedent.

    There’s no magic about historical precedent. It’s just what has happened to happen. There isn’t a mechanism of action by which what has happened before constrains what will happen next time. If very large numbers of people are saying they will vote Labour, and only small numbers say Conservative, I think we have to believe them.
    I think you're misunderstanding historical precedent. The point is not that 'because it was ever thus, it ever will be.' That's legal precedent. Historical precedent is, 'this is how our structures play out in the real world.' That incidentally includes polling precedent. You will notice we don't use that much and never from before 1992 because so many changes to methodology have taken place since then. (If we were, I'd point out that Labour had far larger leads than now in 1963 and came within an ace of losing the 1964 election. Even allowing for that, if memory serves Labour were frequently 16-20 points behind in the polls from 2008-10 and the electoral system helpfully still delivered them a hung Parliament on a mere 29% of the vote, although the Tories would be fools to expect a similar result on a similar share.)

    It's also why I'm saying we should discount elections before 1945 in considering likely outcomes. I am pointing out that if we do such swings are extremely rare, and such seat gains as Labour require for a majority equally rare. Our system militates against it.

    That doesn't mean such an outcome is impossible, merely that it shouldn't be favourite. Don't look at just the polls, look at the practicalities too.
  • Thing is, something crazy has to happen in the next thirteen months.

    650 seats, so the winning post is 326.

    For the Libs, Scots etc to get over 100 combined would be pretty crazy. That leaves 550.

    So to deny Labour a majority, the Conservatives have got to get more than 225. That's better than Major '97, Hague or Howard. That also doesn't smell right.

    And yes, Labour winning a majority requires a crazy swing to happen all at once. But it's what the polls and by elections are showing. And, unlike 1997, there is a lot of fruit that isn't so much low-hanging as falling to the ground of its own accord.

    Everest is the highest mountain in the world, but K2 is thought to be more challenging to climb.
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 67,045

    Morning All,
    I don’t see all that many people these days, but one very common grumble is the state of the roads, especially the number, and depth, of potholes.

    Incidentally, what Generation am I; born before WWII. Professional qualification, not degree, although required a couple of years full-time study.

    May I ask where you live, OKC?

    I am in Gloucestershire, which must have one of the worst potholes problems in the country. I am close to the border with Worcestershire, and when I drive north to Evesham, as I often do, I know as soon as I leave Gloucestershire by the state of the roads. It is exactly the same experience as I once had when driving from Berlin into the recently absorbed East Germany. The tires told you immediately when you crossed the old border.

    Why would Gloucestershire roads be so much worse than surrounding counties? Is the county really more starved of funds than others?

    Fwiw, it is a Conservative County Council, though that may change soon.
    North Worcestershire's roads, around Kidder, are shocking. Even worse than the Shire.

    Neither are as bad as Staffs though. They resurfaced the Cannock to Penkridge road just six months ago (closing it for six weeks in the process) and it's already riddled with potholes again. Absolutely appalling work.
  • Scott_xP said:

    I think we are going to see a very slow Tory recovery in 2024 based on flights to Rwanda, further tax cuts, a gradual relaxing of cost of living pressures and some culture war cut-through.

    Let us assume, for a moment, that a flight to Rwanda actually takes off.

    If a single person on such a flight makes their way back to Calais the entire 400 million pound scheme is a bust.

    Jeremy Clarkson jokes about it in his recent column.

    That’s an interesting point. Not one I’d previously thought of. However, I do think there’s a potential clawback from Reform for the Tories based on the ecstasy of the right wing press as flights start to take off. A couple of points, perhaps. There will be a few more available based on an improving standard of living narrative and general culture war stuff.

    How many people do you imagine believe the Rwanda thing is anything other than silly stunt?
  • bondegezoubondegezou Posts: 7,435

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    A couple of other points:

    1) It's not worth considering elections before 1885 for swing, due to the restricted electorate, and in many ways it isn't worth considering elections before 1918 due to the limited number of seats actually contested. In 1900, for example, 243 seats were returned unopposed.

    2) This also solves the problem with 1918!

    3) I would also note the swing in 1931 was fiendishly complicated as well, due to splits, electoral pacts and the economic crisis. So that swing is not much use as a comparison.

    4) The 1945 general election was not only the only election since 1900 held in wartime* but brought an end to the longest parliament since the dissolution of the Long Parliament in 1660. It was also the last election at which multiple voting was allowed. I don't think the swing there tells us much either.

    5) That means that there is only one election where there was a swing which - if replicated - would give Starmer's Labour a majority. The election concerned was 1997. That swing would give Starmer a majority of one.

    That's a formidable task. It's remarkable it's even possible, but even allowing for Rishi Sunak being more deluded than a Republican Senator it seems to me in the words of Lord Peter Wimsey an improbable-possible.

    *Technically 1918 was too but there was a ceasefire in effect, so I'm not counting that.

    Your thesis is that historical precedent (or lack thereof) trumps polling. I am sceptical. I think polling trumps historical precedent.

    There’s no magic about historical precedent. It’s just what has happened to happen. There isn’t a mechanism of action by which what has happened before constrains what will happen next time. If very large numbers of people are saying they will vote Labour, and only small numbers say Conservative, I think we have to believe them.
    That's true but it is often interesting, sometimes informative, and occasionally salutary to look back at what's happened in the past.
    It absolutely is, and thanks for a nice piece.

    But whenever anyone produces a historical precedent argument, I am reminded of the xkcd cartoon.
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 67,045

    Scott_xP said:

    I think we are going to see a very slow Tory recovery in 2024 based on flights to Rwanda, further tax cuts, a gradual relaxing of cost of living pressures and some culture war cut-through.

    Let us assume, for a moment, that a flight to Rwanda actually takes off.

    If a single person on such a flight makes their way back to Calais the entire 400 million pound scheme is a bust.

    Jeremy Clarkson jokes about it in his recent column.

    That’s an interesting point. Not one I’d previously thought of. However, I do think there’s a potential clawback from Reform for the Tories based on the ecstasy of the right wing press as flights start to take off. A couple of points, perhaps. There will be a few more available based on an improving standard of living narrative and general culture war stuff.

    How many people do you imagine believe the Rwanda thing is anything other than silly stunt?
    Not me, I wouldn't call it silly.

    Far too weak a word.
  • JonathanJonathan Posts: 20,901
    At some point, one nation and Business/Thatcherite conservatives need to start to fight for control of the right, rather than bowing down to and toying with Trumpian populists. Today, they look like a dying breed.

    Who on the right can stand up to Braverman, Farage and the divisive menagerie.
  • I think we are going to see a very slow Tory recovery in 2024 based on flights to Rwanda, further tax cuts, a gradual relaxing of cost of living pressures and some culture war cut-through. I can see them polling low 30s based on a message of things are improving don’t let woke Labour ruin it. If that happens, Labour will not get a big majority. For me a hung Parliament, followed by some kind of Lab/LibDem pact, remains the likeliest outcome.

    You have made the Rwanda comment a few times now. I am curious about how you expect that to play out.

    Let’s assume that a flight actually leaves for Rwanda and that the foreign invaders are successfully dumped in Kigali. Two separate considerations which feel unlikely at the moment.

    But if they do. The nutters foaming on about Rwanda expect that all foreign vermin will be removed to foreign straight away and that boats will stop immediately. And that won’t happen.

    When the slogan is as moronic and absolutist as STOP THE BOATS the only satisfaction is to stop the boats. Completely. And with it the reason to stop the boats which is to remove the vermin. Which can’t be done.

    However much the Tories try to spin any progress they make, the Nigel and ReFUK will be there demanding more.
  • ydoethur said:

    Morning All,
    I don’t see all that many people these days, but one very common grumble is the state of the roads, especially the number, and depth, of potholes.

    Incidentally, what Generation am I; born before WWII. Professional qualification, not degree, although required a couple of years full-time study.

    May I ask where you live, OKC?

    I am in Gloucestershire, which must have one of the worst potholes problems in the country. I am close to the border with Worcestershire, and when I drive north to Evesham, as I often do, I know as soon as I leave Gloucestershire by the state of the roads. It is exactly the same experience as I once had when driving from Berlin into the recently absorbed East Germany. The tires told you immediately when you crossed the old border.

    Why would Gloucestershire roads be so much worse than surrounding counties? Is the county really more starved of funds than others?

    Fwiw, it is a Conservative County Council, though that may change soon.
    North Worcestershire's roads, around Kidder, are shocking. Even worse than the Shire.

    Neither are as bad as Staffs though. They resurfaced the Cannock to Penkridge road just six months ago (closing it for six weeks in the process) and it's already riddled with potholes again. Absolutely appalling work.
    Don't know Kidder but I often drive from Cheltenham to North Norfolk and as soon as I leave Gloucestershire the roads improve immeasurably. Some of the roads around Cheltenham are truly third world. You rarely make a journey without encountering temporary traffic lights where they are patching up the worst bits.
  • FoxyFoxy Posts: 44,388
    ydoethur said:

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    A couple of other points:

    1) It's not worth considering elections before 1885 for swing, due to the restricted electorate, and in many ways it isn't worth considering elections before 1918 due to the limited number of seats actually contested. In 1900, for example, 243 seats were returned unopposed.

    2) This also solves the problem with 1918!

    3) I would also note the swing in 1931 was fiendishly complicated as well, due to splits, electoral pacts and the economic crisis. So that swing is not much use as a comparison.

    4) The 1945 general election was not only the only election since 1900 held in wartime* but brought an end to the longest parliament since the dissolution of the Long Parliament in 1660. It was also the last election at which multiple voting was allowed. I don't think the swing there tells us much either.

    5) That means that there is only one election where there was a swing which - if replicated - would give Starmer's Labour a majority. The election concerned was 1997. That swing would give Starmer a majority of one.

    That's a formidable task. It's remarkable it's even possible, but even allowing for Rishi Sunak being more deluded than a Republican Senator it seems to me in the words of Lord Peter Wimsey an improbable-possible.

    *Technically 1918 was too but there was a ceasefire in effect, so I'm not counting that.

    Your thesis is that historical precedent (or lack thereof) trumps polling. I am sceptical. I think polling trumps historical precedent.

    There’s no magic about historical precedent. It’s just what has happened to happen. There isn’t a mechanism of action by which what has happened before constrains what will happen next time. If very large numbers of people are saying they will vote Labour, and only small numbers say Conservative, I think we have to believe them.
    I think you're misunderstanding historical precedent. The point is not that 'because it was ever thus, it ever will be.' That's legal precedent. Historical precedent is, 'this is how our structures play out in the real world.' That incidentally includes polling precedent. You will notice we don't use that much and never from before 1992 because so many changes to methodology have taken place since then. (If we were, I'd point out that Labour had far larger leads than now in 1963 and came within an ace of losing the 1964 election. Even allowing for that, if memory serves Labour were frequently 16-20 points behind in the polls from 2008-10 and the electoral system helpfully still delivered them a hung Parliament on a mere 29% of the vote, although the Tories would be fools to expect a similar result on a similar share.)

    It's also why I'm saying we should discount elections before 1945 in considering likely outcomes. I am pointing out that if we do such swings are extremely rare, and such seat gains as Labour require for a majority equally rare. Our system militates against it.

    That doesn't mean such an outcome is impossible, merely that it shouldn't be favourite. Don't look at just the polls, look at the practicalities too.
    I think UNS remains a useful concept, but does cover a multitude of changes. 2015 had a trivial Lab-Con swing but was a decisive election because of third parties, with SLAB and LD being eviscerated. I think that likely to reverse on both counts in 2024.

    Studying UNS does make voting behavior seem far more stable than it really is. Often that volatility does cancel out, but that is not necessarily the case.
  • Jonathan said:

    At some point, one nation and Business/Thatcherite conservatives need to start to fight for control of the right, rather than bowing down to and toying with Trumpian populists. Today, they look like a dying breed.

    Who on the right can stand up to Braverman, Farage and the divisive menagerie.

    Who on the left can?

    It will keep happening - indeed, it will grow - until someone in office gets a grip on migration.

    This will shortly become Labour's problem. And putting your fingers in your ears isn't a strategy.
  • Foxy said:

    ydoethur said:

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    .

    But the point made repeatedly by @Heathener with which I agree, is that 2019 was a false baseline. The Tories, led by a fairground huckster, offered the country magic beans. And the country took it.

    The real baseline in my view is much closer to 2015. Although clearly there are also demographic and psephological shifts in the electorate since then, not least increased volatility.

    The Tories are deeply unpopular, and whilst Labour are not themselves popular, the mood is for change. That will give Labour a decent majority.
    She made this point, but she was not convincing (read - wrong) despite her dogmatic insistence in the face of all actual evidence to the contrary which she ignored every time it was pointed out to her.

    Actually the result in 2019 was very much what you would have expected based on 2017's Tory vote share once you eliminated the freak 7% or so who voted Labour in a 'stop Brexit' panic. The real story behind all that was the freakishness of 2017.

    2019 was, incidentally, very close to what the 1992 election would have looked like without tactical voting (Tory majority of 77). In a sense, that supports your point but because Labour starts from so much further behind in terms of seats they need to do that much more work to catch up.

    Another point is that an awful lot of former Labour areas have been drifting away from the party for years. Several reasons for this. One is housing. Many former Labour areas have much lower housing costs so are attracting the moderately affluent and ambitious middle classes who tend to vote Tory, while the cities dominated by the very poor and the liberal rich drift further Labour. Another is simply neglect. Labour have, for example, had a stranglehold on Stoke for years and the city's taken for granted, having useless party grandees like Tristram the Hunt imposed on them (whether they have fared better with Jonathan Gullis is another question)! Demographics and education could also be mentioned - the university seats continue to drift left, manufacturing seats right. Brexit catalysed many of these changes, but it didn't cause them. Morley and Outwood in 2010 and 2015 may be considered the canary in the coal mine. (Indeed, one of the stories of 2017 was how many near misses there were in Tory target seats due to Labour's late surge - Newcastle under Lyme 34 votes was an exceptionally close one, but without even thinking Wolverhampton South East and Wakefield the Tories were a bare 2000 votes from winning seats Labour considered safe).

    I am happy to use 2019 as a baseline and consider 2017 the freak. I could be wrong, but all the evidence points the same way.

    Which means Starmer still has a huge mountain to climb. Comparable to that of Cameron and Kinnock rather than Blair or Attlee.

    Edward Heath pulled it off, but under somewhat different circumstances. That remains the only peacetime election in the age of universal suffrage where a government with a double-digit majority has been replaced by a new government with a double digit majority of its own.
    I think what you may be missing is the extent to which what happened ‘oop north’ in 2019 will be replicated in parts of the south and suburbia in 2024. Blocks of voters who have been taken for granted for years can occur on either side of the political spectrum. People can see the lack of investment in our roads, our utilities and our high streets. They can see the crisis in social care and the NHS. Many of them (or their children) work for the public sector and have been poorly treated by the Government for years. And their 20-something kids are boomeranging home because they can’t afford to live anywhere else.

    I expect some massive shifts this election. And tactical voting to be back to 1997/2001 levels. Except in the SE, low water for the Tories will be some way below 1997 levels. How low? I don’t know but I expect to see some surprising seats change hands. Chelmsford? Tunbridge Wells?
    I’d keep an eye on the Jurassic Coast - constituencies from Bournemouth to Exeter. The demographics are changing very quickly. A lot of retiring late Boomers and downsizing Xers are moving in as the Blue Rinse generation passes into memory. Basically, people like me and my wife are buying the places previously occupied by stalwarts of the Rotary Club and WI. At the same time, we are seeing big cuts in public services, long waits for GP appointments, hospitality struggling because of a lack of labour supply and a constant flow of raw sewage into the rivers and sea. Tory seats down here are going to become a lot scarcer. There may not be any by the mid-2030s, unless the Tories have a serious rethink about their trajectory.

    I think that is a good point. One of the striking changes over the last 2 decades is how politics has shifted by age, with the oldies being much more strongly Conservative over time.

    That may well be reversing, partly due to new cohorts of retirees from younger generations, but also reflecting the Labour lead. Starmers swing applies to all age ranges, it isn't just based on the youngsters.
    Question is whether the Conservatives have become the party of the retired, or the party of boomers. At the moment, the economic stuff points towards the first, but the social values stuff towards the second.

    If the new divide is Labour for working age people, Conservatives for the retired, that's only a bit of a problem for the blue team. Gen X is smaller than the boomer generation, but not decisively so.

    If, on the other hand, the Conservatives have strapped themselves to the boomers, they will need to do something to avoid dying with them.
  • algarkirkalgarkirk Posts: 10,455
    Straw in the wind. Cameron says 'Sustainable ceasefire'. The Israel Palestine thing is never going back to anything remotely resembling what it was before. Western sentiment has changed. Millions of people in the west who are broadly and on the whole sympathetic to Israel rather than the Palestinians have shifted along a spectrum and are not going back. This does not mean a shift towards supporting Hamas etc. But what it will mean is complicated and absorbing.
  • JonathanJonathan Posts: 20,901

    Jonathan said:

    At some point, one nation and Business/Thatcherite conservatives need to start to fight for control of the right, rather than bowing down to and toying with Trumpian populists. Today, they look like a dying breed.

    Who on the right can stand up to Braverman, Farage and the divisive menagerie.

    Who on the left can?

    It will keep happening - indeed, it will grow - until someone in office gets a grip on migration.

    This will shortly become Labour's problem. And putting your fingers in your ears isn't a strategy.
    The sane right have to fight their own battles. Starmer sorted out his back yard. Traditional Tories need to do the same. Some brave soul on the right needs to argue that their divisive, short term,headline grabbing approach to migration is wrong.

  • I think we are going to see a very slow Tory recovery in 2024 based on flights to Rwanda, further tax cuts, a gradual relaxing of cost of living pressures and some culture war cut-through. I can see them polling low 30s based on a message of things are improving don’t let woke Labour ruin it. If that happens, Labour will not get a big majority. For me a hung Parliament, followed by some kind of Lab/LibDem pact, remains the likeliest outcome.

    You have made the Rwanda comment a few times now. I am curious about how you expect that to play out.

    Let’s assume that a flight actually leaves for Rwanda and that the foreign invaders are successfully dumped in Kigali. Two separate considerations which feel unlikely at the moment.

    But if they do. The nutters foaming on about Rwanda expect that all foreign vermin will be removed to foreign straight away and that boats will stop immediately. And that won’t happen.

    When the slogan is as moronic and absolutist as STOP THE BOATS the only satisfaction is to stop the boats. Completely. And with it the reason to stop the boats which is to remove the vermin. Which can’t be done.

    However much the Tories try to spin any progress they make, the Nigel and ReFUK will be there demanding more.
    The boats make up a tiny proportion of overall immigration, so even if miraculously they were all stopped overnight (and short of machine-gunning them I don't see how this could be achieved) there would still be a similar level of immigration to what we have now.

    Many UK voters would be rather disappointed to discover how little difference it made, in the same way that a lot of Leavers are puzzled as to why Brexit has not resulted in a discernible reduction in the number of forriners around.
  • I think we are going to see a very slow Tory recovery in 2024 based on flights to Rwanda, further tax cuts, a gradual relaxing of cost of living pressures and some culture war cut-through. I can see them polling low 30s based on a message of things are improving don’t let woke Labour ruin it. If that happens, Labour will not get a big majority. For me a hung Parliament, followed by some kind of Lab/LibDem pact, remains the likeliest outcome.

    You have made the Rwanda comment a few times now. I am curious about how you expect that to play out.

    Let’s assume that a flight actually leaves for Rwanda and that the foreign invaders are successfully dumped in Kigali. Two separate considerations which feel unlikely at the moment.

    But if they do. The nutters foaming on about Rwanda expect that all foreign vermin will be removed to foreign straight away and that boats will stop immediately. And that won’t happen.

    When the slogan is as moronic and absolutist as STOP THE BOATS the only satisfaction is to stop the boats. Completely. And with it the reason to stop the boats which is to remove the vermin. Which can’t be done.

    However much the Tories try to spin any progress they make, the Nigel and ReFUK will be there demanding more.
    Best thing for the Conservatives is that the Rwanda project remains in the vague future- about to happen, but always stopped by the Bad People.

    Because once it happens, it gets to capacity in... What? A day? A week?

    And then what?
  • ydoethur said:

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    .

    But the point made repeatedly by @Heathener with which I agree, is that 2019 was a false baseline. The Tories, led by a fairground huckster, offered the country magic beans. And the country took it.

    The real baseline in my view is much closer to 2015. Although clearly there are also demographic and psephological shifts in the electorate since then, not least increased volatility.

    The Tories are deeply unpopular, and whilst Labour are not themselves popular, the mood is for change. That will give Labour a decent majority.
    She made this point, but she was not convincing (read - wrong) despite her dogmatic insistence in the face of all actual evidence to the contrary which she ignored every time it was pointed out to her.

    Actually the result in 2019 was very much what you would have expected based on 2017's Tory vote share once you eliminated the freak 7% or so who voted Labour in a 'stop Brexit' panic. The real story behind all that was the freakishness of 2017.

    2019 was, incidentally, very close to what the 1992 election would have looked like without tactical voting (Tory majority of 77). In a sense, that supports your point but because Labour starts from so much further behind in terms of seats they need to do that much more work to catch up.

    Another point is that an awful lot of former Labour areas have been drifting away from the party for years. Several reasons for this. One is housing. Many former Labour areas have much lower housing costs so are attracting the moderately affluent and ambitious middle classes who tend to vote Tory, while the cities dominated by the very poor and the liberal rich drift further Labour. Another is simply neglect. Labour have, for example, had a stranglehold on Stoke for years and the city's taken for granted, having useless party grandees like Tristram the Hunt imposed on them (whether they have fared better with Jonathan Gullis is another question)! Demographics and education could also be mentioned - the university seats continue to drift left, manufacturing seats right. Brexit catalysed many of these changes, but it didn't cause them. Morley and Outwood in 2010 and 2015 may be considered the canary in the coal mine. (Indeed, one of the stories of 2017 was how many near misses there were in Tory target seats due to Labour's late surge - Newcastle under Lyme 34 votes was an exceptionally close one, but without even thinking Wolverhampton South East and Wakefield the Tories were a bare 2000 votes from winning seats Labour considered safe).

    I am happy to use 2019 as a baseline and consider 2017 the freak. I could be wrong, but all the evidence points the same way.

    Which means Starmer still has a huge mountain to climb. Comparable to that of Cameron and Kinnock rather than Blair or Attlee.

    Edward Heath pulled it off, but under somewhat different circumstances. That remains the only peacetime election in the age of universal suffrage where a government with a double-digit majority has been replaced by a new government with a double digit majority of its own.
    I think what you may be missing is the extent to which what happened ‘oop north’ in 2019 will be replicated in parts of the south and suburbia in 2024. Blocks of voters who have been taken for granted for years can occur on either side of the political spectrum. People can see the lack of investment in our roads, our utilities and our high streets. They can see the crisis in social care and the NHS. Many of them (or their children) work for the public sector and have been poorly treated by the Government for years. And their 20-something kids are boomeranging home because they can’t afford to live anywhere else.

    I expect some massive shifts this election. And tactical voting to be back to 1997/2001 levels. Except in the SE, low water for the Tories will be some way below 1997 levels. How low? I don’t know but I expect to see some surprising seats change hands. Chelmsford? Tunbridge Wells?
    I’d keep an eye on the Jurassic Coast - constituencies from Bournemouth to Exeter. The demographics are changing very quickly. A lot of retiring late Boomers and downsizing Xers are moving in as the Blue Rinse generation passes into memory. Basically, people like me and my wife are buying the places previously occupied by stalwarts of the Rotary Club and WI. At the same time, we are seeing big cuts in public services, long waits for GP appointments, hospitality struggling because of a lack of labour supply and a constant flow of raw sewage into the rivers and sea. Tory seats down here are going to become a lot scarcer. There may not be any by the mid-2030s, unless the Tories have a serious rethink about their trajectory.

    The Jurassic Coast is losing its fossils? Don't tell UNESCO!

    They’re regenerating. Like Dr Who!!

  • VerulamiusVerulamius Posts: 1,430
    Foxy said:

    ydoethur said:

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    .

    But the point made repeatedly by @Heathener with which I agree, is that 2019 was a false baseline. The Tories, led by a fairground huckster, offered the country magic beans. And the country took it.

    The real baseline in my view is much closer to 2015. Although clearly there are also demographic and psephological shifts in the electorate since then, not least increased volatility.

    The Tories are deeply unpopular, and whilst Labour are not themselves popular, the mood is for change. That will give Labour a decent majority.
    Edward Heath pulled it off, but under somewhat different circumstances. That remains the only peacetime election in the age of universal suffrage where a government with a double-digit majority has been replaced by a new government with a double digit majority of its own.
    Also the only single term government since the war. 1970 was odd in several ways.

    All elections have their own unique circumstances, but both 2017 and 2019 were particularly odd. I think 2015 was our last "normal" election, though even that was odd due to the Coalition.

    For some reason I was watching the 1970 general election results programme recently.

    At the start of the results the Conservatives were getting more that expected and a minion was painting extra numbers on the swingometer to keep up.
  • FoxyFoxy Posts: 44,388

    I think we are going to see a very slow Tory recovery in 2024 based on flights to Rwanda, further tax cuts, a gradual relaxing of cost of living pressures and some culture war cut-through. I can see them polling low 30s based on a message of things are improving don’t let woke Labour ruin it. If that happens, Labour will not get a big majority. For me a hung Parliament, followed by some kind of Lab/LibDem pact, remains the likeliest outcome.

    You have made the Rwanda comment a few times now. I am curious about how you expect that to play out.

    Let’s assume that a flight actually leaves for Rwanda and that the foreign invaders are successfully dumped in Kigali. Two separate considerations which feel unlikely at the moment.

    But if they do. The nutters foaming on about Rwanda expect that all foreign vermin will be removed to foreign straight away and that boats will stop immediately. And that won’t happen.

    When the slogan is as moronic and absolutist as STOP THE BOATS the only satisfaction is to stop the boats. Completely. And with it the reason to stop the boats which is to remove the vermin. Which can’t be done.

    However much the Tories try to spin any progress they make, the Nigel and ReFUK will be there demanding more.
    The other unexpected consequence of a Rwanda flight will be the return flight.

    The Rwanda deal commits us to take and resettle a number of refugees from Rwanda, who most likely would be from the wars in Eastern DRC.

    I wonder what the Faragist press will make of that.
  • Jonathan said:

    Jonathan said:

    At some point, one nation and Business/Thatcherite conservatives need to start to fight for control of the right, rather than bowing down to and toying with Trumpian populists. Today, they look like a dying breed.

    Who on the right can stand up to Braverman, Farage and the divisive menagerie.

    Who on the left can?

    It will keep happening - indeed, it will grow - until someone in office gets a grip on migration.

    This will shortly become Labour's problem. And putting your fingers in your ears isn't a strategy.
    The sane right have to fight their own battles. Starmer sorted out his back yard. Traditional Tories need to do the same. Some brave soul on the right needs to argue that their divisive, short term,headline grabbing approach to migration is wrong.

    Trouble is, the Conservative left pretty much all left (pushed/jumped/wandered off/never joined) in 2019.
  • I think we are going to see a very slow Tory recovery in 2024 based on flights to Rwanda, further tax cuts, a gradual relaxing of cost of living pressures and some culture war cut-through. I can see them polling low 30s based on a message of things are improving don’t let woke Labour ruin it. If that happens, Labour will not get a big majority. For me a hung Parliament, followed by some kind of Lab/LibDem pact, remains the likeliest outcome.

    You have made the Rwanda comment a few times now. I am curious about how you expect that to play out.

    Let’s assume that a flight actually leaves for Rwanda and that the foreign invaders are successfully dumped in Kigali. Two separate considerations which feel unlikely at the moment.

    But if they do. The nutters foaming on about Rwanda expect that all foreign vermin will be removed to foreign straight away and that boats will stop immediately. And that won’t happen.

    When the slogan is as moronic and absolutist as STOP THE BOATS the only satisfaction is to stop the boats. Completely. And with it the reason to stop the boats which is to remove the vermin. Which can’t be done.

    However much the Tories try to spin any progress they make, the Nigel and ReFUK will be there demanding more.
    I think there is a small cohort of votes, currently concentrated in the Reform numbers, for demonstrable, performative cruelty.

  • algarkirk said:

    Straw in the wind. Cameron says 'Sustainable ceasefire'. The Israel Palestine thing is never going back to anything remotely resembling what it was before. Western sentiment has changed. Millions of people in the west who are broadly and on the whole sympathetic to Israel rather than the Palestinians have shifted along a spectrum and are not going back. This does not mean a shift towards supporting Hamas etc. But what it will mean is complicated and absorbing.

    It is not an issue on which optimism easily thrives, but it is just conceivable that the inevitability of a 2-State solution will begin to impose itself on Hamas and the Israeli Government, both of whom have a deeply vested interest in the continuance of the present state of affairs.
  • It would be instructive to consider the last decade in politics. The main lesson is that the formerly impossible isn’t just possible, it actually happens.

    Brexit. Millions of never voters turning out not just to vote but to literally blow up the political ecosystem. Then 2 elections later the same millions of never voters turning out again. Hordes of people on council estates who never ever vote coming out to vote for the first time ever to vote Conservative.

    Madness. Crazy. Impossible. But it happened.

    Set aside the statistics and the political norms and well this election no that election. People have seen that voting for the impossible can actually deliver.

    It isn’t just the polls - which are stark. It’s the mood. Listen to what people are saying. What they are complaining about. That sense of hopelessness. A revolution is coming. Because like with Brexit and the subsequent confirmatory election in 2019, the need to vote outweighs the inertia which prevents people voting.

    The Daily Star - the newspaper for people who do not vote - is hyper political and openly partisan for the “fuck the Tories” party. Don’t tell me politics is done for those millions of previously non-voters. It isn’t.
  • JonathanJonathan Posts: 20,901
    The last thing the populist right want is for anyone to actually solve migration questions. It’s their lifeblood. It’s why for all the headlines it is never actually addressed.

    An administration quietly, methodically working towards a state where this is sustainable and depoliticised is an anathema to the new right.
  • bondegezoubondegezou Posts: 7,435
    ydoethur said:

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    A couple of other points:

    1) It's not worth considering elections before 1885 for swing, due to the restricted electorate, and in many ways it isn't worth considering elections before 1918 due to the limited number of seats actually contested. In 1900, for example, 243 seats were returned unopposed.

    2) This also solves the problem with 1918!

    3) I would also note the swing in 1931 was fiendishly complicated as well, due to splits, electoral pacts and the economic crisis. So that swing is not much use as a comparison.

    4) The 1945 general election was not only the only election since 1900 held in wartime* but brought an end to the longest parliament since the dissolution of the Long Parliament in 1660. It was also the last election at which multiple voting was allowed. I don't think the swing there tells us much either.

    5) That means that there is only one election where there was a swing which - if replicated - would give Starmer's Labour a majority. The election concerned was 1997. That swing would give Starmer a majority of one.

    That's a formidable task. It's remarkable it's even possible, but even allowing for Rishi Sunak being more deluded than a Republican Senator it seems to me in the words of Lord Peter Wimsey an improbable-possible.

    *Technically 1918 was too but there was a ceasefire in effect, so I'm not counting that.

    Your thesis is that historical precedent (or lack thereof) trumps polling. I am sceptical. I think polling trumps historical precedent.

    There’s no magic about historical precedent. It’s just what has happened to happen. There isn’t a mechanism of action by which what has happened before constrains what will happen next time. If very large numbers of people are saying they will vote Labour, and only small numbers say Conservative, I think we have to believe them.
    I think you're misunderstanding historical precedent. The point is not that 'because it was ever thus, it ever will be.' That's legal precedent. Historical precedent is, 'this is how our structures play out in the real world.' That incidentally includes polling precedent. You will notice we don't use that much and never from before 1992 because so many changes to methodology have taken place since then. (If we were, I'd point out that Labour had far larger leads than now in 1963 and came within an ace of losing the 1964 election. Even allowing for that, if memory serves Labour were frequently 16-20 points behind in the polls from 2008-10 and the electoral system helpfully still delivered them a hung Parliament on a mere 29% of the vote, although the Tories would be fools to expect a similar result on a similar share.)

    It's also why I'm saying we should discount elections before 1945 in considering likely outcomes. I am pointing out that if we do such swings are extremely rare, and such seat gains as Labour require for a majority equally rare. Our system militates against it.

    That doesn't mean such an outcome is impossible, merely that it shouldn't be favourite. Don't look at just the polls, look at the practicalities too.
    I think your case is that such swings HAVE BEEN extremely rare, which isn’t the same as saying they ARE extremely rare. The world can change.

    If we take the polling at face value, then this analysis of historical swings suggests the next election will have a record swing. That could be because we’ve had an unusual period of politics (Brexit, the oddities of 2017/9, the rise of the Brexit Party/Reform), including other unprecedented events (COVID-19, PM turnover, PM law-breaking, tax levels, immigration levels).

    But maybe also people’s voting behaviours have changed. The idea that you can’t have large swings comes down to the idea that most people won’t change how they vote. The “practicalities” of which you speak are of getting people to vote for a different party than last time. Maybe, in the modern era, after some unprecedented referendums, in a world of social media, people are just much more changeable in how they vote. I note that two out of the three highest ever Conservative->Labour swings in by-elections have been in this Parliament, and three out of the four highest Conservative->LibDem swings too. Isn’t that evidence that the electorate has become “swingier”?
  • Foxy said:

    ydoethur said:

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    .

    But the point made repeatedly by @Heathener with which I agree, is that 2019 was a false baseline. The Tories, led by a fairground huckster, offered the country magic beans. And the country took it.

    The real baseline in my view is much closer to 2015. Although clearly there are also demographic and psephological shifts in the electorate since then, not least increased volatility.

    The Tories are deeply unpopular, and whilst Labour are not themselves popular, the mood is for change. That will give Labour a decent majority.
    She made this point, but she was not convincing (read - wrong) despite her dogmatic insistence in the face of all actual evidence to the contrary which she ignored every time it was pointed out to her.

    Actually the result in 2019 was very much what you would have expected based on 2017's Tory vote share once you eliminated the freak 7% or so who voted Labour in a 'stop Brexit' panic. The real story behind all that was the freakishness of 2017.

    2019 was, incidentally, very close to what the 1992 election would have looked like without tactical voting (Tory majority of 77). In a sense, that supports your point but because Labour starts from so much further behind in terms of seats they need to do that much more work to catch up.

    Another point is that an awful lot of former Labour areas have been drifting away from the party for years. Several reasons for this. One is housing. Many former Labour areas have much lower housing costs so are attracting the moderately affluent and ambitious middle classes who tend to vote Tory, while the cities dominated by the very poor and the liberal rich drift further Labour. Another is simply neglect. Labour have, for example, had a stranglehold on Stoke for years and the city's taken for granted, having useless party grandees like Tristram the Hunt imposed on them (whether they have fared better with Jonathan Gullis is another question)! Demographics and education could also be mentioned - the university seats continue to drift left, manufacturing seats right. Brexit catalysed many of these changes, but it didn't cause them. Morley and Outwood in 2010 and 2015 may be considered the canary in the coal mine. (Indeed, one of the stories of 2017 was how many near misses there were in Tory target seats due to Labour's late surge - Newcastle under Lyme 34 votes was an exceptionally close one, but without even thinking Wolverhampton South East and Wakefield the Tories were a bare 2000 votes from winning seats Labour considered safe).

    I am happy to use 2019 as a baseline and consider 2017 the freak. I could be wrong, but all the evidence points the same way.

    Which means Starmer still has a huge mountain to climb. Comparable to that of Cameron and Kinnock rather than Blair or Attlee.

    Edward Heath pulled it off, but under somewhat different circumstances. That remains the only peacetime election in the age of universal suffrage where a government with a double-digit majority has been replaced by a new government with a double digit majority of its own.
    I think what you may be missing is the extent to which what happened ‘oop north’ in 2019 will be replicated in parts of the south and suburbia in 2024. Blocks of voters who have been taken for granted for years can occur on either side of the political spectrum. People can see the lack of investment in our roads, our utilities and our high streets. They can see the crisis in social care and the NHS. Many of them (or their children) work for the public sector and have been poorly treated by the Government for years. And their 20-something kids are boomeranging home because they can’t afford to live anywhere else.

    I expect some massive shifts this election. And tactical voting to be back to 1997/2001 levels. Except in the SE, low water for the Tories will be some way below 1997 levels. How low? I don’t know but I expect to see some surprising seats change hands. Chelmsford? Tunbridge Wells?
    I’d keep an eye on the Jurassic Coast - constituencies from Bournemouth to Exeter. The demographics are changing very quickly. A lot of retiring late Boomers and downsizing Xers are moving in as the Blue Rinse generation passes into memory. Basically, people like me and my wife are buying the places previously occupied by stalwarts of the Rotary Club and WI. At the same time, we are seeing big cuts in public services, long waits for GP appointments, hospitality struggling because of a lack of labour supply and a constant flow of raw sewage into the rivers and sea. Tory seats down here are going to become a lot scarcer. There may not be any by the mid-2030s, unless the Tories have a serious rethink about their trajectory.

    I think that is a good point. One of the striking changes over the last 2 decades is how politics has shifted by age, with the oldies being much more strongly Conservative over time.

    That may well be reversing, partly due to new cohorts of retirees from younger generations, but also reflecting the Labour lead. Starmers swing applies to all age ranges, it isn't just based on the youngsters.
    Question is whether the Conservatives have become the party of the retired, or the party of boomers. At the moment, the economic stuff points towards the first, but the social values stuff towards the second.

    If the new divide is Labour for working age people, Conservatives for the retired, that's only a bit of a problem for the blue team. Gen X is smaller than the boomer generation, but not decisively so.

    If, on the other hand, the Conservatives have strapped themselves to the boomers, they will need to do something to avoid dying with them.

    I think it’s a Boomer thing. We were brought up in a very different country to the one that exists now, in the years after a war that cast a shadow over everything.

  • RogerRoger Posts: 18,891
    algarkirk said:

    Straw in the wind. Cameron says 'Sustainable ceasefire'. The Israel Palestine thing is never going back to anything remotely resembling what it was before. Western sentiment has changed. Millions of people in the west who are broadly and on the whole sympathetic to Israel rather than the Palestinians have shifted along a spectrum and are not going back. This does not mean a shift towards supporting Hamas etc. But what it will mean is complicated and absorbing.

    Good if true. Politically leaving Starmer up shit Creek wouldn't be a bad thing. It'll show him that as leader following the Tories and the Americans isn't good enough. The mood against the Israelis is palpably shifting.

  • JonathanJonathan Posts: 20,901

    Jonathan said:

    Jonathan said:

    At some point, one nation and Business/Thatcherite conservatives need to start to fight for control of the right, rather than bowing down to and toying with Trumpian populists. Today, they look like a dying breed.

    Who on the right can stand up to Braverman, Farage and the divisive menagerie.

    Who on the left can?

    It will keep happening - indeed, it will grow - until someone in office gets a grip on migration.

    This will shortly become Labour's problem. And putting your fingers in your ears isn't a strategy.
    The sane right have to fight their own battles. Starmer sorted out his back yard. Traditional Tories need to do the same. Some brave soul on the right needs to argue that their divisive, short term,headline grabbing approach to migration is wrong.

    Trouble is, the Conservative left pretty much all left (pushed/jumped/wandered off/never joined) in 2019.
    I know. Nevertheless the defeat of the populist right has to come from the right. At some point hard nosed capitalists will decide they are better off without the chaos.
  • Btw, thanks for the interesting piece, Ben.

    Has it occurred to you that it will probably cause a spike in visitors to the Site? Imagine all those people googling Swingers Clubs and being directed here. Ah well, it will make a change from Russian Trolls.
  • Latest setback to the Tory Rwanda plan: there are no planes
    Airlines fearing reputational damage are said to be refusing to supply aircraft — and the MoD doesn’t want to be involved either

    https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/latest-setback-to-the-tory-rwanda-plan-there-are-no-planes-cxpwnkpfc (£££)
  • Jonathan said:

    At some point, one nation and Business/Thatcherite conservatives need to start to fight for control of the right, rather than bowing down to and toying with Trumpian populists. Today, they look like a dying breed.

    Who on the right can stand up to Braverman, Farage and the divisive menagerie.

    Who on the left can?

    It will keep happening - indeed, it will grow - until someone in office gets a grip on migration.

    This will shortly become Labour's problem. And putting your fingers in your ears isn't a strategy.

    Immigration is an issue that largely concerns Tory and Reform voters. It is far less of a primary concern for everyone else. There was a very good piece on this in the FT at the end if last week.

  • maxhmaxh Posts: 818

    Jonathan said:

    Jonathan said:

    At some point, one nation and Business/Thatcherite conservatives need to start to fight for control of the right, rather than bowing down to and toying with Trumpian populists. Today, they look like a dying breed.

    Who on the right can stand up to Braverman, Farage and the divisive menagerie.

    Who on the left can?

    It will keep happening - indeed, it will grow - until someone in office gets a grip on migration.

    This will shortly become Labour's problem. And putting your fingers in your ears isn't a strategy.
    The sane right have to fight their own battles. Starmer sorted out his back yard. Traditional Tories need to do the same. Some brave soul on the right needs to argue that their divisive, short term,headline grabbing approach to migration is wrong.

    Trouble is, the Conservative left pretty much all left (pushed/jumped/wandered off/never joined) in 2019.
    David Aaronovitch made a similar point in the excellent recent podcast series ‘Eight Years Hard Labour’ (thoroughly recommended).

    He quoted an anti-Corbyn Labour MP saying (I’m paraphrasing): if Corbyn had won the 2019 election the party truly would have been lost.

    It’s why (I think) the Tories have a far harder job to root out their barmy faction. The barmy faction, because of very unusual historical circumstances (deadlock of Brexit), actually won an election.

    The Tories will return to a centre-right party I expect (though am by no means certain), but it’s going to be a far harder road than Labour’s has been post-Corbyn. Cummings and Johnson can take a lot of the blame for that I think.
  • JonathanJonathan Posts: 20,901

    Latest setback to the Tory Rwanda plan: there are no planes
    Airlines fearing reputational damage are said to be refusing to supply aircraft — and the MoD doesn’t want to be involved either

    https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/latest-setback-to-the-tory-rwanda-plan-there-are-no-planes-cxpwnkpfc (£££)

    Don’t worry Chris Graying knows someone with Ferries that can sail to Rwanda.
  • FoxyFoxy Posts: 44,388

    It would be instructive to consider the last decade in politics. The main lesson is that the formerly impossible isn’t just possible, it actually happens.

    Brexit. Millions of never voters turning out not just to vote but to literally blow up the political ecosystem. Then 2 elections later the same millions of never voters turning out again. Hordes of people on council estates who never ever vote coming out to vote for the first time ever to vote Conservative.

    Madness. Crazy. Impossible. But it happened.

    Set aside the statistics and the political norms and well this election no that election. People have seen that voting for the impossible can actually deliver.

    It isn’t just the polls - which are stark. It’s the mood. Listen to what people are saying. What they are complaining about. That sense of hopelessness. A revolution is coming. Because like with Brexit and the subsequent confirmatory election in 2019, the need to vote outweighs the inertia which prevents people voting.

    The Daily Star - the newspaper for people who do not vote - is hyper political and openly partisan for the “fuck the Tories” party. Don’t tell me politics is done for those millions of previously non-voters. It isn’t.

    The general assumption is that 2024 will be a low turnout election (meaning around 60%) because of a lack of enthusiasm for either Starmer or Sunak. There is some polling evidence to support that, but it isn't inevitable.

    "Kicking them up the arse" is a powerful motivator, if not a particularly coherent or useful one.

    The corollary of your revolutionary change idea is that frustration will build quickly with Starmer/Reeves, but benefitting left wing rather than right wing populist.
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 50,976
    ydoethur said:

    Foxy said:

    ydoethur said:

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    .

    But the point made repeatedly by @Heathener with which I agree, is that 2019 was a false baseline. The Tories, led by a fairground huckster, offered the country magic beans. And the country took it.

    The real baseline in my view is much closer to 2015. Although clearly there are also demographic and psephological shifts in the electorate since then, not least increased volatility.

    The Tories are deeply unpopular, and whilst Labour are not themselves popular, the mood is for change. That will give Labour a decent majority.
    Edward Heath pulled it off, but under somewhat different circumstances. That remains the only peacetime election in the age of universal suffrage where a government with a double-digit majority has been replaced by a new government with a double digit majority of its own.
    Also the only single term government since the war. 1970 was odd in several ways.

    All elections have their own unique circumstances, but both 2017 and 2019 were particularly odd. I think 2015 was our last "normal" election, though even that was odd due to the Coalition.

    But here again we come back to my point - those people arguing for a big Labour win are *assuming* 2019 was odd, and a 'get Brexit done' election. Having burrowed deep into the data it simply doesn't support that conclusion. Not forgetting that Brexit itself wasn't just about leaving the EU although it should have been.

    Therefore, those who dismiss 2019 as a baseline (to reiterate) are making a serious error. It is a perfectly acceptable baseline and we again come back to Starmer has a mountain to climb.

    As we see by the goalpost moving on here. First 2019 wasn't useful. Then I don't understand the depth of anger in the south...
    The factor that those who say that 2019 should somehow be ignored is incumbency. 350 Tory MPs have had public money pouring into their constituencies, paying for full time staff, offices, office equipment and helping those MPs maintain a profile in the local media. That may not quite be the enormous advantage that new Labour had when the faucets were at maximum before the Coalition but it is still a tremendous help (the SNP in Scotland have a similar advantage by the way) and makes the figures about what is really being spent on the election somewhat bogus because a lot of the spending by the non incumbent party will simply be mirroring what the incumbents are getting for free.

    At present there are 198 properly signed up Labour MPs in Parliament, with some outliers in very safe Labour seats who have been expelled for various reasons. That means the Tories have got 152x that financial advantage across the country. In Scotland the SNP have 41 more of the same benefits as Labour. It won't save them but it makes the mountain Labour have to climb truly precipitous.
  • TimSTimS Posts: 9,309
    I wonder if we pay too much attention to swing. Isn’t it after all just a statistical artefact when we compare one result and another?

    The absolute vote share in each seat is what it is. I think swing psychology assumes there is frictional drag in each voter. That to move from one party to another involves an effort of will. Therefore the further votes have to move from the last election, the more friction acts against the result.

    Maybe there’s some truth in this. But maybe less if a. those voters have already moved around a bit in the last couple of elections, b. they have already voted Labour in local elections.

    Polls have swung wildly since the Brexit vote, suggesting voter friction may not be what it was.
  • theProletheProle Posts: 948
    Scott_xP said:

    I think we are going to see a very slow Tory recovery in 2024 based on flights to Rwanda, further tax cuts, a gradual relaxing of cost of living pressures and some culture war cut-through.

    Let us assume, for a moment, that a flight to Rwanda actually takes off.

    If a single person on such a flight makes their way back to Calais the entire 400 million pound scheme is a bust.

    Jeremy Clarkson jokes about it in his recent column.
    Not really.

    I don't think that the government is either willing or able to do this, but imagine that every single illegal who enters the UK goes on a plane to Rwanda the following day, without fail.

    Yes, a few would try again - and end up back in Rwanda again. It wouldn't take all that long before word started getting back to the places these people come from, that the expensive and dangerous route to Europe and then to the UK was just a really expensive and dangerous way to get to Rwanda. And that would over time (probably months rather than years) cut off the flow of migratnts willing to try.

    It's also a bit like the nuclear deterrent - people had to let off a few big bangs to demonstrate that the systems worked, and then they are built into policy decisions for as long as they are around. In a similar way, I'd imagine we'd have to ship a few thousand people to Rwanda in the first year, after which we would hardly be shipping anybody at-all, because almost no one would be wasting their time trying to come, and the gangs currently running the small boat would presumably go back to other forms of organised crime.
  • JonathanJonathan Posts: 20,901

    Jonathan said:

    At some point, one nation and Business/Thatcherite conservatives need to start to fight for control of the right, rather than bowing down to and toying with Trumpian populists. Today, they look like a dying breed.

    Who on the right can stand up to Braverman, Farage and the divisive menagerie.

    Who on the left can?

    It will keep happening - indeed, it will grow - until someone in office gets a grip on migration.

    This will shortly become Labour's problem. And putting your fingers in your ears isn't a strategy.

    Immigration is an issue that largely concerns Tory and Reform voters. It is far less of a primary concern for everyone else. There was a very good piece on this in the FT at the end if last week.

    It naive to believe that new right for all their talk want to do anything but inflame tensions on immigration. It’s what sustains them. The last thing they want to do is for someone to make the issue go away.
  • ydoethur said:

    Morning All,
    I don’t see all that many people these days, but one very common grumble is the state of the roads, especially the number, and depth, of potholes.

    Incidentally, what Generation am I; born before WWII. Professional qualification, not degree, although required a couple of years full-time study.

    May I ask where you live, OKC?

    I am in Gloucestershire, which must have one of the worst potholes problems in the country. I am close to the border with Worcestershire, and when I drive north to Evesham, as I often do, I know as soon as I leave Gloucestershire by the state of the roads. It is exactly the same experience as I once had when driving from Berlin into the recently absorbed East Germany. The tires told you immediately when you crossed the old border.

    Why would Gloucestershire roads be so much worse than surrounding counties? Is the county really more starved of funds than others?

    Fwiw, it is a Conservative County Council, though that may change soon.
    North Worcestershire's roads, around Kidder, are shocking. Even worse than the Shire.

    Neither are as bad as Staffs though. They resurfaced the Cannock to Penkridge road just six months ago (closing it for six weeks in the process) and it's already riddled with potholes again. Absolutely appalling work.
    Don't know Kidder but I often drive from Cheltenham to North Norfolk and as soon as I leave Gloucestershire the roads improve immeasurably. Some of the roads around Cheltenham are truly third world. You rarely make a journey without encountering temporary traffic lights where they are patching up the worst bits.
    While LA budget cuts aren't helping with the pothole problem, it is exacerbated by climate change, undermining the road substructure with all that rain and flooding. And the extremes of temperature don't help either. All this guff about preparing for climate change, well, one aspect of that is increased investment in road maintenance. Which is nt happening and seems unlikely to happen when councils are having to make decisions about whether they use their limited budgets for potholes, eduction, social care, or emptying bins.
  • HYUFDHYUFD Posts: 116,908
    I think it was the 1970 general election where there was such an unexpectedly large swing from Wilson's governing Labour party to Heath's Tories they had to paint on the extra swing numbers.

    At least if there is a big swing to Starmer Labour it would be expected from broadcasters point of view
  • Scott_xPScott_xP Posts: 32,793
    theProle said:

    I don't think that the government is either willing or able to do this, but imagine that every single illegal who enters the UK goes on a plane to Rwanda the following day, without fail.

    That's not the plan, but even if it was it doesn't work.

    The whole argument is that putting some people on a plane will stop all people getting in a boat.

    One person from a plane getting on a boat nullifies the entire argument.
  • TimS said:

    I wonder if we pay too much attention to swing. Isn’t it after all just a statistical artefact when we compare one result and another?

    The absolute vote share in each seat is what it is. I think swing psychology assumes there is frictional drag in each voter. That to move from one party to another involves an effort of will. Therefore the further votes have to move from the last election, the more friction acts against the result.

    Maybe there’s some truth in this. But maybe less if a. those voters have already moved around a bit in the last couple of elections, b. they have already voted Labour in local elections.

    Polls have swung wildly since the Brexit vote, suggesting voter friction may not be what it was.

    Yes and no. Swing at least has the merit of treating constituencies in parallel. Worse is taking them in series and saying a party needs to win an unprecedented 267 more seats to win, as if its activists had to visit them one at a time and would be exhausted by the end.
  • Latest setback to the Tory Rwanda plan: there are no planes
    Airlines fearing reputational damage are said to be refusing to supply aircraft — and the MoD doesn’t want to be involved either

    https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/latest-setback-to-the-tory-rwanda-plan-there-are-no-planes-cxpwnkpfc (£££)

    I said this before. There are completely impossible barriers to the Rwanda crayon dream:
    We don't have sufficient police / border force resource to catch all the small boats
    We don't have anywhere to securely intern all the arrivals and won't be getting anywhere ever as no-one wants a gulag in their locale
    We don't have sufficient Border Force staff to process people
    We don't have capacity in the courts system to legally declare people alien
    We don't have aircraft to fly people to Rwanda
    Rwanda doesn't have the capacity to take even a fraction of the numbers assuming it still wants to participate at all

    So even if the bill gets through parliament - and that looks very unlikely - it still cannot function as intended. To say nothing of the massive holes in the bill which Starmer tore open at PMQs a few weeks ago. Do have to ask if the Tories proposing this bill have actually read it...
  • Scott_xP said:

    I think we are going to see a very slow Tory recovery in 2024 based on flights to Rwanda, further tax cuts, a gradual relaxing of cost of living pressures and some culture war cut-through.

    Let us assume, for a moment, that a flight to Rwanda actually takes off.

    If a single person on such a flight makes their way back to Calais the entire 400 million pound scheme is a bust.

    Jeremy Clarkson jokes about it in his recent column.

    That’s an interesting point. Not one I’d previously thought of. However, I do think there’s a potential clawback from Reform for the Tories based on the ecstasy of the right wing press as flights start to take off. A couple of points, perhaps. There will be a few more available based on an improving standard of living narrative and general culture war stuff.

    How many people do you imagine believe the Rwanda thing is anything other than silly stunt?

    Not many - but enough to add a couple of points to the Tory vote if the flights start taking off. On their own, they won’t be close to enough. But as part of a suite of other things - more tax cuts, hradual easing of cost of living pressures, the war on woke - it could get the Tories into the low thirties.

  • OBR economist said Corbyn debt plan would boost GDP
    Critics say the comments, made in 2017, show the budget watchdog is biased toward public spending and ‘not fit for purpose’

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/politics/2023/12/16/corbyn-debt-plans-could-boost-gdp-said-obr-economist/ (£££)
  • HYUFDHYUFD Posts: 116,908

    ydoethur said:

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    .

    But the point made repeatedly by @Heathener with which I agree, is that 2019 was a false baseline. The Tories, led by a fairground huckster, offered the country magic beans. And the country took it.

    The real baseline in my view is much closer to 2015. Although clearly there are also demographic and psephological shifts in the electorate since then, not least increased volatility.

    The Tories are deeply unpopular, and whilst Labour are not themselves popular, the mood is for change. That will give Labour a decent majority.
    She made this point, but she was not convincing (read - wrong) despite her dogmatic insistence in the face of all actual evidence to the contrary which she ignored every time it was pointed out to her.

    Actually the result in 2019 was very much what you would have expected based on 2017's Tory vote share once you eliminated the freak 7% or so who voted Labour in a 'stop Brexit' panic. The real story behind all that was the freakishness of 2017.

    2019 was, incidentally, very close to what the 1992 election would have looked like without tactical voting (Tory majority of 77). In a sense, that supports your point but because Labour starts from so much further behind in terms of seats they need to do that much more work to catch up.

    Another point is that an awful lot of former Labour areas have been drifting away from the party for years. Several reasons for this. One is housing. Many former Labour areas have much lower housing costs so are attracting the moderately affluent and ambitious middle classes who tend to vote Tory, while the cities dominated by the very poor and the liberal rich drift further Labour. Another is simply neglect. Labour have, for example, had a stranglehold on Stoke for years and the city's taken for granted, having useless party grandees like Tristram the Hunt imposed on them (whether they have fared better with Jonathan Gullis is another question)! Demographics and education could also be mentioned - the university seats continue to drift left, manufacturing seats right. Brexit catalysed many of these changes, but it didn't cause them. Morley and Outwood in 2010 and 2015 may be considered the canary in the coal mine. (Indeed, one of the stories of 2017 was how many near misses there were in Tory target seats due to Labour's late surge - Newcastle under Lyme 34 votes was an exceptionally close one, but without even thinking Wolverhampton South East and Wakefield the Tories were a bare 2000 votes from winning seats Labour considered safe).

    I am happy to use 2019 as a baseline and consider 2017 the freak. I could be wrong, but all the evidence points the same way.

    Which means Starmer still has a huge mountain to climb. Comparable to that of Cameron and Kinnock rather than Blair or Attlee.

    Edward Heath pulled it off, but under somewhat different circumstances. That remains the only peacetime election in the age of universal suffrage where a government with a double-digit majority has been replaced by a new government with a double digit majority of its own.
    I think what you may be missing is the extent to which what happened ‘oop north’ in 2019 will be replicated in parts of the south and suburbia in 2024. Blocks of voters who have been taken for granted for years can occur on either side of the political spectrum. People can see the lack of investment in our roads, our utilities and our high streets. They can see the crisis in social care and the NHS. Many of them (or their children) work for the public sector and have been poorly treated by the Government for years. And their 20-something kids are boomeranging home because they can’t afford to live anywhere else.

    I expect some massive shifts this election. And tactical voting to be back to 1997/2001 levels. Except in the SE, low water for the Tories will be some way below 1997 levels. How low? I don’t know but I expect to see some surprising seats change hands. Chelmsford? Tunbridge Wells?
    I’d keep an eye on the Jurassic Coast - constituencies from Bournemouth to Exeter. The demographics are changing very quickly. A lot of retiring late Boomers and downsizing Xers are moving in as the Blue Rinse generation passes into memory. Basically, people like me and my wife are buying the places previously occupied by stalwarts of the Rotary Club and WI. At the same time, we are seeing big cuts in public services, long waits for GP appointments, hospitality struggling because of a lack of labour supply and a constant flow of raw sewage into the rivers and sea. Tory seats down here are going to become a lot scarcer. There may not be any by the mid-2030s, unless the Tories have a serious rethink about their trajectory.

    Not all those in the Rotary club and WI are Tories of course, some just want to do community service.

    By the mid 2030s if Labour are in government and still in power you would expect the Tories to see swingback to them
  • FoxyFoxy Posts: 44,388
    theProle said:

    Scott_xP said:

    I think we are going to see a very slow Tory recovery in 2024 based on flights to Rwanda, further tax cuts, a gradual relaxing of cost of living pressures and some culture war cut-through.

    Let us assume, for a moment, that a flight to Rwanda actually takes off.

    If a single person on such a flight makes their way back to Calais the entire 400 million pound scheme is a bust.

    Jeremy Clarkson jokes about it in his recent column.
    Not really.

    I don't think that the government is either willing or able to do this, but imagine that every single illegal who enters the UK goes on a plane to Rwanda the following day, without fail.

    Yes, a few would try again - and end up back in Rwanda again. It wouldn't take all that long before word started getting back to the places these people come from, that the expensive and dangerous route to Europe and then to the UK was just a really expensive and dangerous way to get to Rwanda. And that would over time (probably months rather than years) cut off the flow of migratnts willing to try.

    It's also a bit like the nuclear deterrent - people had to let off a few big bangs to demonstrate that the systems worked, and then they are built into policy decisions for as long as they are around. In a similar way, I'd imagine we'd have to ship a few thousand people to Rwanda in the first year, after which we would hardly be shipping anybody at-all, because almost no one would be wasting their time trying to come, and the gangs currently running the small boat would presumably go back to other forms of organised crime.
    The capacity of the Rwanda scheme is limited to hundreds, not thousands (and also commits us to paying their support costs in Rwanda for 5 years and taking refugees from Rwanda). So I cannot see it working like you envisage. We are not Australia.
  • TimSTimS Posts: 9,309
    Jonathan said:

    Jonathan said:

    At some point, one nation and Business/Thatcherite conservatives need to start to fight for control of the right, rather than bowing down to and toying with Trumpian populists. Today, they look like a dying breed.

    Who on the right can stand up to Braverman, Farage and the divisive menagerie.

    Who on the left can?

    It will keep happening - indeed, it will grow - until someone in office gets a grip on migration.

    This will shortly become Labour's problem. And putting your fingers in your ears isn't a strategy.

    Immigration is an issue that largely concerns Tory and Reform voters. It is far less of a primary concern for everyone else. There was a very good piece on this in the FT at the end if last week.

    It naive to believe that new right for all their talk want to do anything but inflame tensions on immigration. It’s what sustains them. The last thing they want to do is for someone to make the issue go away.
    That’s an interesting point. If by some miracle the government actually managed to “stop the boats” and also slash legal immigration, the issue would decline in salience and instead voters would focus on everything else. Which would be a disaster for the government, especially given slashing migration would also mean stashing the health and social care workforce.
  • Foxy said:

    It would be instructive to consider the last decade in politics. The main lesson is that the formerly impossible isn’t just possible, it actually happens.

    Brexit. Millions of never voters turning out not just to vote but to literally blow up the political ecosystem. Then 2 elections later the same millions of never voters turning out again. Hordes of people on council estates who never ever vote coming out to vote for the first time ever to vote Conservative.

    Madness. Crazy. Impossible. But it happened.

    Set aside the statistics and the political norms and well this election no that election. People have seen that voting for the impossible can actually deliver.

    It isn’t just the polls - which are stark. It’s the mood. Listen to what people are saying. What they are complaining about. That sense of hopelessness. A revolution is coming. Because like with Brexit and the subsequent confirmatory election in 2019, the need to vote outweighs the inertia which prevents people voting.

    The Daily Star - the newspaper for people who do not vote - is hyper political and openly partisan for the “fuck the Tories” party. Don’t tell me politics is done for those millions of previously non-voters. It isn’t.

    The general assumption is that 2024 will be a low turnout election (meaning around 60%) because of a lack of enthusiasm for either Starmer or Sunak. There is some polling evidence to support that, but it isn't inevitable.

    "Kicking them up the arse" is a powerful motivator, if not a particularly coherent or useful one.

    The corollary of your revolutionary change idea is that frustration will build quickly with Starmer/Reeves, but benefitting left wing rather than right wing populist.
    Absolutely! Look at the fury from the hard left. Why isn't Starmer launching a war against newspapers? Absolutists are never happy.
  • HYUFDHYUFD Posts: 116,908
    Foxy said:

    ydoethur said:

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    .

    But the point made repeatedly by @Heathener with which I agree, is that 2019 was a false baseline. The Tories, led by a fairground huckster, offered the country magic beans. And the country took it.

    The real baseline in my view is much closer to 2015. Although clearly there are also demographic and psephological shifts in the electorate since then, not least increased volatility.

    The Tories are deeply unpopular, and whilst Labour are not themselves popular, the mood is for change. That will give Labour a decent majority.
    Edward Heath pulled it off, but under somewhat different circumstances. That remains the only peacetime election in the age of universal suffrage where a government with a double-digit majority has been replaced by a new government with a double digit majority of its own.
    Also the only single term government since the war. 1970 was odd in several ways.

    All elections have their own unique circumstances, but both 2017 and 2019 were particularly odd. I think 2015 was our last "normal" election, though even that was odd due to the Coalition.

    1974-1979 was also close to a single term government, just there were 2 general elections in 1974 for Wilson to get a majority
  • bondegezoubondegezou Posts: 7,435
    The recent Dutch election was one of the biggest ever swings in Dutch electoral history. We’ve had some other big surprises in recent European elections. Is that evidence that electorates generally are becoming “swingier”?

    And remember also that we have FPTP. FPTP produces big changes in seats for more moderate changes in vote shares.
  • TimSTimS Posts: 9,309
    The best Twitter thread of the weekend has just dropped:

    Ofcom has published a list of swearwords by degree of offensiveness, which really is a f****** great service for non-native speakers. So here it is (thread)
    https://x.com/hhesterm/status/1736293337689182593?s=46
  • algarkirkalgarkirk Posts: 10,455
    Jonathan said:

    Latest setback to the Tory Rwanda plan: there are no planes
    Airlines fearing reputational damage are said to be refusing to supply aircraft — and the MoD doesn’t want to be involved either

    https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/latest-setback-to-the-tory-rwanda-plan-there-are-no-planes-cxpwnkpfc (£££)

    Don’t worry Chris Graying knows someone with Ferries that can sail to Rwanda.
    That's too soft. If they have walked all the way from Fayzabad to Calais they can walk from Weymouth to Kigali.
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 50,976

    OBR economist said Corbyn debt plan would boost GDP
    Critics say the comments, made in 2017, show the budget watchdog is biased toward public spending and ‘not fit for purpose’

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/politics/2023/12/16/corbyn-debt-plans-could-boost-gdp-said-obr-economist/ (£££)

    What an economist said that a boost in public spending would give a short term boost to GDP? Outrageous. Its almost as if Keynes knew what he was talking about and multipliers were a thing.

    Of course the medium term consequences as debt, borrowing, inflation and interest rates spiral out of control would be rather different but any economist who said anything else, well, wouldn't be an economist.
  • Scott_xP said:

    I think we are going to see a very slow Tory recovery in 2024 based on flights to Rwanda, further tax cuts, a gradual relaxing of cost of living pressures and some culture war cut-through.

    Let us assume, for a moment, that a flight to Rwanda actually takes off.

    If a single person on such a flight makes their way back to Calais the entire 400 million pound scheme is a bust.

    Jeremy Clarkson jokes about it in his recent column.

    That’s an interesting point. Not one I’d previously thought of. However, I do think there’s a potential clawback from Reform for the Tories based on the ecstasy of the right wing press as flights start to take off. A couple of points, perhaps. There will be a few more available based on an improving standard of living narrative and general culture war stuff.

    How many people do you imagine believe the Rwanda thing is anything other than silly stunt?

    Not many - but enough to add a couple of points to the Tory vote if the flights start taking off. On their own, they won’t be close to enough. But as part of a suite of other things - more tax cuts, hradual easing of cost of living pressures, the war on woke - it could get the Tories into the low thirties.

    Which tax cuts are you talking about? We have just had tax *increases*. They are calling a cut in how much the increase will be a "cut". That just makes people assume their taxes will fall. So when their taxes rise, and the government says they have fallen, that only increases the likelihood they vote against the Tories.
  • MonksfieldMonksfield Posts: 2,198

    ydoethur said:

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    .

    But the point made repeatedly by @Heathener with which I agree, is that 2019 was a false baseline. The Tories, led by a fairground huckster, offered the country magic beans. And the country took it.

    The real baseline in my view is much closer to 2015. Although clearly there are also demographic and psephological shifts in the electorate since then, not least increased volatility.

    The Tories are deeply unpopular, and whilst Labour are not themselves popular, the mood is for change. That will give Labour a decent majority.
    She made this point, but she was not convincing (read - wrong) despite her dogmatic insistence in the face of all actual evidence to the contrary which she ignored every time it was pointed out to her.

    Actually the result in 2019 was very much what you would have expected based on 2017's Tory vote share once you eliminated the freak 7% or so who voted Labour in a 'stop Brexit' panic. The real story behind all that was the freakishness of 2017.

    2019 was, incidentally, very close to what the 1992 election would have looked like without tactical voting (Tory majority of 77). In a sense, that supports your point but because Labour starts from so much further behind in terms of seats they need to do that much more work to catch up.

    Another point is that an awful lot of former Labour areas have been drifting away from the party for years. Several reasons for this. One is housing. Many former Labour areas have much lower housing costs so are attracting the moderately affluent and ambitious middle classes who tend to vote Tory, while the cities dominated by the very poor and the liberal rich drift further Labour. Another is simply neglect. Labour have, for example, had a stranglehold on Stoke for years and the city's taken for granted, having useless party grandees like Tristram the Hunt imposed on them (whether they have fared better with Jonathan Gullis is another question)! Demographics and education could also be mentioned - the university seats continue to drift left, manufacturing seats right. Brexit catalysed many of these changes, but it didn't cause them. Morley and Outwood in 2010 and 2015 may be considered the canary in the coal mine. (Indeed, one of the stories of 2017 was how many near misses there were in Tory target seats due to Labour's late surge - Newcastle under Lyme 34 votes was an exceptionally close one, but without even thinking Wolverhampton South East and Wakefield the Tories were a bare 2000 votes from winning seats Labour considered safe).

    I am happy to use 2019 as a baseline and consider 2017 the freak. I could be wrong, but all the evidence points the same way.

    Which means Starmer still has a huge mountain to climb. Comparable to that of Cameron and Kinnock rather than Blair or Attlee.

    Edward Heath pulled it off, but under somewhat different circumstances. That remains the only peacetime election in the age of universal suffrage where a government with a double-digit majority has been replaced by a new government with a double digit majority of its own.
    I think what you may be missing is the extent to which what happened ‘oop north’ in 2019 will be replicated in parts of the south and suburbia in 2024. Blocks of voters who have been taken for granted for years can occur on either side of the political spectrum. People can see the lack of investment in our roads, our utilities and our high streets. They can see the crisis in social care and the NHS. Many of them (or their children) work for the public sector and have been poorly treated by the Government for years. And their 20-something kids are boomeranging home because they can’t afford to live anywhere else.

    I expect some massive shifts this election. And tactical voting to be back to 1997/2001 levels. Except in the SE, low water for the Tories will be some way below 1997 levels. How low? I don’t know but I expect to see some surprising seats change hands. Chelmsford? Tunbridge Wells?
    I’d keep an eye on the Jurassic Coast - constituencies from Bournemouth to Exeter. The demographics are changing very quickly. A lot of retiring late Boomers and downsizing Xers are moving in as the Blue Rinse generation passes into memory. Basically, people like me and my wife are buying the places previously occupied by stalwarts of the Rotary Club and WI. At the same time, we are seeing big cuts in public services, long waits for GP appointments, hospitality struggling because of a lack of labour supply and a constant flow of raw sewage into the rivers and sea. Tory seats down here are going to become a lot scarcer. There may not be any by the mid-2030s, unless the Tories have a serious rethink about their trajectory.

    Yep, I’ve had a couple of mates move to Exmouth/Teignmouth in recent years. Real citizen of nowhere types who live for travel. If that’s a big trend, then I can see quite a cultural shift over time.
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 50,976

    Latest setback to the Tory Rwanda plan: there are no planes
    Airlines fearing reputational damage are said to be refusing to supply aircraft — and the MoD doesn’t want to be involved either

    https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/latest-setback-to-the-tory-rwanda-plan-there-are-no-planes-cxpwnkpfc (£££)

    I said this before. There are completely impossible barriers to the Rwanda crayon dream:
    We don't have sufficient police / border force resource to catch all the small boats
    We don't have anywhere to securely intern all the arrivals and won't be getting anywhere ever as no-one wants a gulag in their locale
    We don't have sufficient Border Force staff to process people
    We don't have capacity in the courts system to legally declare people alien
    We don't have aircraft to fly people to Rwanda
    Rwanda doesn't have the capacity to take even a fraction of the numbers assuming it still wants to participate at all

    So even if the bill gets through parliament - and that looks very unlikely - it still cannot function as intended. To say nothing of the massive holes in the bill which Starmer tore open at PMQs a few weeks ago. Do have to ask if the Tories proposing this bill have actually read it...
    Your contribution rather reminded me of:

    We don't need no education
    We don't need no thought control
    No dark sarcasm in the classroom
    Teacher, leave them kids alone
    Hey! Teacher! Leave them kids alone!
    All in all, it's just another brick in the wall

    Certainly those who have persuaded themselves this is ever going to work in a meaningful sense certainly need an education.
  • MonksfieldMonksfield Posts: 2,198

    Briefly off-topic (sorry): trains. Lots of angry people on Twitter with pictures of absurdly overcrowded trains. Cross Country especially - who recently were instructed to retire their HST fleet by the government.

    We have people struggling to travel - with the negative economic impact of that - and train manufacturers on the verge of closure due to the lack of orders.

    If this country worked, supply would be increased to match demand…

    Retiring the TP hauled sets in the run up to Xmas was also utterly brainless.
  • TimS said:

    The best Twitter thread of the weekend has just dropped:

    Ofcom has published a list of swearwords by degree of offensiveness, which really is a f****** great service for non-native speakers. So here it is (thread)
    https://x.com/hhesterm/status/1736293337689182593?s=46

    Imagine being in the workshop where all those words had to be debated as to how bad they are...
  • Jonathan said:

    At some point, one nation and Business/Thatcherite conservatives need to start to fight for control of the right, rather than bowing down to and toying with Trumpian populists. Today, they look like a dying breed.

    Who on the right can stand up to Braverman, Farage and the divisive menagerie.

    Who on the left can?

    It will keep happening - indeed, it will grow - until someone in office gets a grip on migration.

    This will shortly become Labour's problem. And putting your fingers in your ears isn't a strategy.

    Immigration is an issue that largely concerns Tory and Reform voters. It is far less of a primary concern for everyone else. There was a very good piece on this in the FT at the end if last week.

    Over half the public think its too high and should be reduced: https://migrationobservatory.ox.ac.uk/resources/briefings/uk-public-opinion-toward-immigration-overall-attitudes-and-level-of-concern/

    Labour need to have answers to this, or you might find those Tory and Reform voter numbers grow rather quickly.
  • ydoethur said:

    ydoethur said:

    I was expecting the article to be by @NickPalmer given the headline...

    An interesting analysis, but drawing a conclusion rather different from mine. Because swings of such magnitude are very rare, I would say Labour is unlikely to get an overall majority. Not impossible, but unlikely.

    .

    But the point made repeatedly by @Heathener with which I agree, is that 2019 was a false baseline. The Tories, led by a fairground huckster, offered the country magic beans. And the country took it.

    The real baseline in my view is much closer to 2015. Although clearly there are also demographic and psephological shifts in the electorate since then, not least increased volatility.

    The Tories are deeply unpopular, and whilst Labour are not themselves popular, the mood is for change. That will give Labour a decent majority.
    She made this point, but she was not convincing (read - wrong) despite her dogmatic insistence in the face of all actual evidence to the contrary which she ignored every time it was pointed out to her.

    Actually the result in 2019 was very much what you would have expected based on 2017's Tory vote share once you eliminated the freak 7% or so who voted Labour in a 'stop Brexit' panic. The real story behind all that was the freakishness of 2017.

    2019 was, incidentally, very close to what the 1992 election would have looked like without tactical voting (Tory majority of 77). In a sense, that supports your point but because Labour starts from so much further behind in terms of seats they need to do that much more work to catch up.

    Another point is that an awful lot of former Labour areas have been drifting away from the party for years. Several reasons for this. One is housing. Many former Labour areas have much lower housing costs so are attracting the moderately affluent and ambitious middle classes who tend to vote Tory, while the cities dominated by the very poor and the liberal rich drift further Labour. Another is simply neglect. Labour have, for example, had a stranglehold on Stoke for years and the city's taken for granted, having useless party grandees like Tristram the Hunt imposed on them (whether they have fared better with Jonathan Gullis is another question)! Demographics and education could also be mentioned - the university seats continue to drift left, manufacturing seats right. Brexit catalysed many of these changes, but it didn't cause them. Morley and Outwood in 2010 and 2015 may be considered the canary in the coal mine. (Indeed, one of the stories of 2017 was how many near misses there were in Tory target seats due to Labour's late surge - Newcastle under Lyme 34 votes was an exceptionally close one, but without even thinking Wolverhampton South East and Wakefield the Tories were a bare 2000 votes from winning seats Labour considered safe).

    I am happy to use 2019 as a baseline and consider 2017 the freak. I could be wrong, but all the evidence points the same way.

    Which means Starmer still has a huge mountain to climb. Comparable to that of Cameron and Kinnock rather than Blair or Attlee.

    Edward Heath pulled it off, but under somewhat different circumstances. That remains the only peacetime election in the age of universal suffrage where a government with a double-digit majority has been replaced by a new government with a double digit majority of its own.
    I think what you may be missing is the extent to which what happened ‘oop north’ in 2019 will be replicated in parts of the south and suburbia in 2024. Blocks of voters who have been taken for granted for years can occur on either side of the political spectrum. People can see the lack of investment in our roads, our utilities and our high streets. They can see the crisis in social care and the NHS. Many of them (or their children) work for the public sector and have been poorly treated by the Government for years. And their 20-something kids are boomeranging home because they can’t afford to live anywhere else.

    I expect some massive shifts this election. And tactical voting to be back to 1997/2001 levels. Except in the SE, low water for the Tories will be some way below 1997 levels. How low? I don’t know but I expect to see some surprising seats change hands. Chelmsford? Tunbridge Wells?
    I’d keep an eye on the Jurassic Coast - constituencies from Bournemouth to Exeter. The demographics are changing very quickly. A lot of retiring late Boomers and downsizing Xers are moving in as the Blue Rinse generation passes into memory. Basically, people like me and my wife are buying the places previously occupied by stalwarts of the Rotary Club and WI. At the same time, we are seeing big cuts in public services, long waits for GP appointments, hospitality struggling because of a lack of labour supply and a constant flow of raw sewage into the rivers and sea. Tory seats down here are going to become a lot scarcer. There may not be any by the mid-2030s, unless the Tories have a serious rethink about their trajectory.

    Yep, I’ve had a couple of mates move to Exmouth/Teignmouth in recent years. Real citizen of nowhere types who live for travel.
    I bet they make fantastic neighbours.
This discussion has been closed.