An early election?

The latest evidence of dissension within the Parliamentary Tories has led to widespread speculation that there will be an early election. Some are even suggesting it will take place in March or April next year.

Here is Ed Davey calling for an election on BBC Breakfast today:

Now, like all activists, Ed will hate a winter election when door-stepping becomes a cold and dispiriting task, made worse by the reluctance of residents to answer their doors after dark. But it does make us wonder whether the Conservatives might capitulate and go for a really early election as a deliberate tactic. After all they know they are going to lose, so maybe they would want to make the campaign as difficult as possible for their opponents.

I suggest you dig out your warmest gloves …

 

* Mary Reid is a contributing editor on Lib Dem Voice. She was a councillor in Kingston upon Thames, where she is still very active with the local party, and is the Hon President of Kingston Lib Dems.

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16 Comments

  • nigel hunter 7th Dec '23 - 2:24pm

    Davey has sacked Ludford as our European spokesperson.Is he reigning as ‘supreme leader’ in charge?When Ashdown was in charge we were a tolerant party with good policies and being shown as human.Up in the polls and more MPs as a result.
    To be just like ‘the other 2’ does not give us a stand out look but a risk of being illrelevant.Same as same as.
    Our policies are good we should be shouting them from the rooftops and not expect a Tory collapse wii bring Tory voters to us.They can just stay at home and not vote for us.

  • Leekliberal 7th Dec '23 - 6:12pm

    @nigel hunter: Hear hear!

  • I am interested in the comments by Nigel Hunter. I joined the Liberal Party in 1959, and on and off it appeared to me that there was a strong strand of belief in the party in participatory democracy. To me that meant that everyone has the right to be involved in decision making.
    The question is how this can be done. The party itself is the ideal organisation to develop ideas on how to do this. I do not see this happening.
    My view is that before we lecture to others we should ensure that we are doing it ourselves.

  • Peter Davies 8th Dec '23 - 9:26am

    Being European Spokesperson of a party that’s not allowed to mention Europe can’t have been a very enjoyable job.

  • Some of the comments here seem to be intended for another thread. Can we get back to the question of an early election please?

  • It would be interesting to see, in the event of a confidence vote, whether Sunak could rely on the support of both competing wings of his party? The Bravermanites might welcome the opportunity to bring him down early in the hope of taking control of the wreckage.

    But if the Tories accept that they can’t win the next election, then there is a strong argument to go early next year (February or March?) from a damage limitation point of view. Small boat crossing always fall during the winter, so there must be a temptation to hold the election before Farage’s Spring photo ops on the Kent coast pointing out to sea and looking sad. The effect of the NI cut will be on people’s pay packets, and with a GE out of the way then voters might be less inclined to punish the Tories further during May’s local elections, helping to preserve more of their local councillor and activist base.

  • My opinion is that when talking about a General Election almost the only thing we can control is whether the party is ready for it.

  • Nonconformistradical 8th Dec '23 - 5:07pm

    @Tom Harney
    How would you define ready?

    What are your smart objectives – you’ll need those to define ready?

  • James Fowler 9th Dec '23 - 10:09am

    I can’t quite decide whether I’d like to see an early election or not. One part of me is desperate to see the end of this pointless government. One the other hand there is so much pain still to come because of the awful decisions, evasions and complacency of the past 13 years that I want the maximum amount of it to play out on the Conservatives’ watch.

  • Jenny Barnes 9th Dec '23 - 11:28am

    So the tories can either go for a May or earlier election, which they are guaranteed to lose, or hang on till October, November, or even February 2025 in the hope that something will turn up and the certainty of another 6 -9 months of destroying the country and being MPs/ Cabinet Ministers/ PM, being paid well above their value. Think, think.

  • Turkeys don’t usually vote for Christmas – simple as that.

    The Tories, like Mr Micawber are hoping that, “something might turn up”. It didn’t work for Micawber, and after Rishi gets the treatment for ‘Eat Out to Help out’ next week it unlikely to happen soon.

  • I would guess Sunak will go for spring. The real concern should be are we ready? SirEd is silent on every issue The next election will be vicious and simple slogans will win against reasoned argument. We must be ready for a gutter fight.

  • Mary Fulton 9th Dec '23 - 6:08pm

    Nonconformistradical
    I would define ready as having our candidates in place in all constituencies. I don’t know how far down the road we are on this across the rest of the country but my constituency hasn’t selected a candidate yet.

  • Anthony Acton 10th Dec '23 - 11:28am

    Comparing Labour’s list of “non-battleground” seats – which includes with a few exceptions all our target seats – with our list of PPCs already selected it’s clear that we are not “ready” in the sense that Mary Fulton argues. Labour’s list is quite puzzling eg this constituency is shown as “non-battleground” but they are already distributing leaflets here with bar charts showing they not us are the main challengers to the Tories. Back to Mary’s point, it’s not necessarily fatal if our candidate is chosen late – Don Foster (though not well known in the constituency) smashed it in Bath in 1992 a few weeks after replacing another PPC.

  • Jenny Barnes 11th Dec '23 - 4:13pm

    “The governing party will not call a general election unless it thinks it will win. ”
    Could everyone who is asked how they will vote by pollsters please say “Definitely Tory”? Then they’ll think they’ll win :))))

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