Professor John Curtice predicts big gains for Lib Dems in 12th December election

From LBC:

The UK’s leading election expert Sir John Curtice told LBC he expects parties other than the two major ones to have a record number of MPs in the upcoming General Election.

The UK is expected to go to the polls on 12th December after Jeremy Corbyn told Labour MPs to back Boris Johnson’s proposal for an early General Election.

Sir John is the man who predicted Brexit and has been in charge of the accurate exit polls in the recent elections in 2015 and 2017.

And speaking to Shelagh Fogarty, he gave a surprising prediction of what we can expect.

He said: “I think the safest prediction is that we will have a record number of non-Conservative and non-Labour MPs in this parliament.

“The SNP look set to win the vast majority of seats in Scotland. The Liberal Democrats given their position in the polls should do extremely well. We expect Caroline Lucas and the Green Party to hang on to her seat.

“We could have more than 100 MPs that do not belong to either of the other two parties”

You can read the full article here.

* Paul Walter is a Liberal Democrat activist. He is one of the Liberal Democrat Voice team. He blogs at Liberal Burblings.

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  • Curtice is hardly going out on a limb, the betting markets are already predicting well over 100.
    Can we break on through this time ?
    We can only try.

  • William Crossman 29th Oct '19 - 10:25pm

    So pleased to see Stephen Lloyd free from his 2017 pledge and now able to join the campaign to stop Brexit. I really hope he’s the Eastbourne candidate.

  • 50 SNP, 18 NI, 3 PC and 1 Green leaves 29 for us if there are going to more than 101 non-Tory/Labour MPs.

  • Martin Frost 29th Oct '19 - 11:30pm

    The most likely result of the forthcoming general election is a Tory majority, potentially a really big one. The Lib Dems, SNP and now Labour were spooked and have become willing instruments of Dominic Cummings master plan for the hardest possible Brexit.

    A lib Dem surge that will sweep the country? A handful of extra seats at best.

    Terrible decision to call an election now . Those who voted Remain have been betrayed and for what?

    I hope that I am wrong in my analysis but I fear the worst.

  • Paul Barker, the betting markets are in fact predicting 40.5 Lib Dem seats.

    As Lee Thacker points out, Curtice’s prediction only implies that he thinks Lib Dems will win at least 29 seats.

    Nothing like enough to make the “Jo Swinson, our next PM” boast sound credible. Nothing like enough to stop Brexit, except in concert with Labour and the SNP. Oh wait, the Lib Dems have strained heaven and earth to put distance between themselves and Labour, by rejecting Labour’s referendum policy. So no chance there.

    Boris doesn’t deserve to win. But his opponents don’t deserve to beat him.

  • Charles Pragnell 29th Oct '19 - 11:57pm

    Martin I think you might be getting abit carried away with unpredictable polling. A pre Brexit poll could potentially benefit The Lib Dems and SNP. If the election had been called after an exit from the EU , The Tories could claim a jingoistic Falklands style landslide. I suspect the polls will tell a different story in six weeks time.
    I suspect The strategy for The Lib Dems is to focus on key seats. The poll for Cambridge puts us up 10% in Cambridge to 39%. A Lib Dem win is possible. I believe we could potentially pick up seats from four different parties.

    Sir John is pretty accurate with his analysis, it is what is going on under the raidar which could be more important than the polls.

    My prediction is a huge improvement on 2017, possibly back 1997 to 2005 levels.

  • In terms of parliamentary arithmetic, if the LibDems and the SNP get 50 seats each, a Labour reduction from 244 seats to about 220-230 would still allow for an anti Brexit or pro Referendum government to be formed. The rogue factor would be the number of Lexiteers on the Labour side.

  • Aren’t we really going to have several hundred mini general elections, many of which could go one if three, four, even five ways? Reasons for optimism – remainers are likely sophisticated enough to have to vote tactically where it matters, and I still think some labour seat, however Brexit, just won’t vote Tory. If BJ loses say 20 or so seats (snp, LD, even Lab) he has a lot to gain, and am not sure where the low hanging fruit lies for him. Reason for pessimism- while political system has been duped into holding a GE to resolve a point outstanding from a referendum. And at a terrible time of the year.

  • Jackm – if Labour still put forward a 2017-style left-wing manifesto, he can hold on Labour Leave seats.

  • Is the Farage party fighting? Logically they should. They could change everything. That will also influence Tory morale. The question for each party is whether they can campaign effectively in individual constituencies.

  • It’s certainly true Boris has been given exactly what he wanted on almost exactly the terms that he wanted it. My strong preference would have been to force this back to the Spring. Though given enough Labour MPs were finally prepared to pass the WAIB that simply may not have been realistic. On the other hand making Boris ‘ do or die ‘ and fighting against the backdrop of a legally secured extension where Brexit is still legally stopable is an acheivement. It may just be we reached the natural equillibrum point between the two forces. It’s all the most appalling mess and I’m very gloomy. Though I’m not clear there was a better outcome available given we are where we are.

  • Jayne Mansfield 30th Oct '19 - 7:07am

    At least Boris Johnson has been given an early Christmas present.

    Whose idea was the Fixed Term Parliament to prevent politicians calling elections at times to suit themselves?

  • Yeovil Yokel 30th Oct '19 - 7:27am

    The point, Jayne, is that the 12 December date is now fixed in law – if MP’s had voted for an election under the FTPA Johnson would have been able to change the election date to suit his own needs.

  • Bill le Breton 30th Oct '19 - 7:28am

    Jayne the idea of the Fixed Term Parliament was not to ‘prevent politicians calling elections at times to suit themselves?’

    It was to remove the power of a PM to call one – a particularly necessary change in a Parliament with a coalition between a larger and a smaller party.

    We should avoid ‘dis-ing’ the FTPA. We may very well need it in the next Parliament. Allowing a ‘notwithstanding bill’ to pass will not have helped. A minor party contemplating doing a deal with a larger one in 7 weeks time will need to be aware that a its ‘coalition partner’ + the opposition could combine to end a coalition using 2019’s use of the bill/Act as a precedent.

  • Jayne Mansfield 30th Oct '19 - 7:28am

    @ Tom Harney,
    I would lay a bet that Farage will form some sort of pact in some constituencies to get Brexit over the line.

    Farage is a clever politician who realises that to achieve his aim to leave the EU, one does not fragment the leave vote if the result would be that a remain MP benefits. There is and never has been any doubt as to what it is that he hopes to achieve and what he is prepared to do to achieve it.

  • Arnold Kiel 30th Oct '19 - 7:58am

    I am hopeful about Farage.

    EU-bashing and Brexit were his vehicles to personal prominence and enrichment which he cannot lose. A pact with the Tories would mean for him to fold as they will not “give” him a single seat, and he quite fancies the one he holds in Brussels.

    To remain visible on the scene and finance his lifestyle he must fight in this GE. His personal best-case result is a hung parliament, another extension, and another referendum (which he ideally loses).

  • Jayne Mansfield 30th Oct '19 - 8:08am

    @ Bill Le Breton,

    Well one politician, Boris Johnson has used it to his advantage.

    This in one remainer who will probably for the first time, not vote. I say that as someone whose family will not only see their professions and industries damaged, but will be personally damaged by Brexit. Unfortunately they don’t have the residency qualifications for the EU countries they would now like to be citizens. of.

    I am sorry but I find the hubris of the Liberal Democrat leader frankly alarming.

  • Richard Underhill. 30th Oct '19 - 8:53am

    Professor John Curtice was on BBC1 at 08.39.
    Basically the Conservatives have no friends left that they can rely on, not even the DUP.
    Recent Liberal Democrat gains are entirely from Remain voters.
    Another referendum on Europe after the general election is a major option, to settle the issue.

  • Roger Billins 30th Oct '19 - 8:57am

    Jayne, I am not a big fan of Jo. She has taken alarming risks which I hope pay off. I also find her delivery appalling but this is a time to work together and deliver a large number of Lib Dem M.Ps to form with others a Remain parliament. The alternative is a hard Brexit and a hard right government with no interest in combating climate change and every interest in turning us into a European Singapore or Dubai. Please vote !

  • John Marriott 30th Oct '19 - 8:58am

    For the moment I shall refrain from making predictions. I’ve made enough in the past couple of years, which have all proved to be wide of the mark. In my constituency (Sleaford & North Hykeham) there will only be one result. I reckon that I shall do what I believe they let them do in Australia, namely go to the Poll Station, get my ballot paper and, in my case, write at the bottom of it : ’None of the above’.

    “Why not vote Lib Dem?”, you may ask. Well, call me old fashioned if you like; but I still consider that I am voting for a person to represent me in Parliament, not necessarily for a party and certainly not for a Prime Minister. I believe that the Lib Dem candidate around here is a young student. He’s probably a nice young man and might indeed appeal to a younger generation as opposed to a ‘has been’ like me; but what kind of life experience has he got?

    I’m sure that this won’t go down well in certain quarters, indeed I wonder if it will even appear in LDV. There’s the challenge for the Editors.

  • George Burn 30th Oct ’19 – 12:30am…………………..In terms of parliamentary arithmetic, if the LibDems and the SNP get 50 seats each, a Labour reduction from 244 seats to about 220-230 would still allow for an anti Brexit or pro Referendum government to be formed. The rogue factor would be the number of Lexiteers on the Labour side…………..

    Really, Jo Swinson has spent almost her entire leadership promising that she will not work with Labour; She has called Jeremy Corbyn ‘unfit to be PM’. If this party gets even 60 seats they will be a minor party compared to Labour; what then?
    Jeremy Corbyn will have the support of the SNP (they have already shown their willingness to work with him) so Jeremy Corbyn would be the leader, either of a minority government or of a coalition.

    That, of course, will only be an option if Boris Johnson fails to win a majority; if he, as seems most likely, gets his majority then……Brexit and 5 more years of right wing Tory policies…

  • Personally speaking I think the Lib Dem’s have a tactically brilliant message ‘Stop Brexit’. It’s brilliant because the Lib Dem’s can articulate a message which says we will cancel Brexit, get the economy moving and spend money on public services.

    Labour have to fight the election with a promise to spend yet more time on Brexit whilst our economy is struggling to allow us to move away from Brexit

    Tories are promising more Brexit, as they have still only negotiated the divorce settlement and not the future relationship and are therefore wedded to austerity.

    Simple messages can win elections

  • @expats

    The challenge facing the Tories is very substantial. They are vacating much of Scotland, London, the other bigger cities and their commuter belts, and shooting to make good the losses they will make in the Leave-supporting areas of the Midlands and Northern England. The Brexit Party will probably not win any seats but will cannibalise the Tory vote. And the Tories, in their desperation to deliver a deal before the end of October, have now stabbed the DUP in the back on what is a fundamental issue for them. As Curtice says, the Tories are friendless, so they absolutely have to win a majority.

    The Tories will be the biggest party on 13 December but will do well to stand still in terms of parliamentary seats; getting over the 320 mark and winning a majority is going to be really hard for them, even with a 10-point lead in the polls. I’m not saying it’s impossible but this is a massive challenge for them.

    Whereas on the Remain/Referendum side, whilst neither Labour nor the LibDems really stand much of a chance of getting more seats than the Tories, if the sums work out, they plus the SNP (and PC and the Greens) can find ways of working together after the election, in particular around convening a second Referendum. Forget all of the heat and light between Labour, the LibDems and the SNP (and there will be much more of that in the coming month), in reality we all know that there is now a real path to defeat Brexit democratically. It’s a long, long way from being a certainty, but we have a chance.

  • I put some figures in the Electoral Calculus election predictor. They used recent poll of poll figures giving the Conservatives a majority of 76. By increasing the Labour percent to 27% and reducing the Conservatives to 31% and having us on 18% my figures gave us 38 MPs. The Conservatives end up with 308 MP’s and the non-Conservative and DUP MPs (excluding Sein Fein) number 324.

    If common sense prevailed with such a result we would have to support a minority Corbyn government to get a new Brexit deal and to put it to the people in a referendum.

  • Katharine Pindar 30th Oct '19 - 11:04am

    Yes, the most realistic chance of stopping Brexit is through another referendum. In our campaigning, therefore, we should surely emphasise that we have always supported another vote, and, failing our becoming a majority in the next Parliament, we will be working for a referendum, for the people to decide between a deal and remain. I heard Ed Davey put our case very well on Sky yesterday evening, while waiting for the vote on the election to be held, so hopefully our Manifesto will reflect our broad appeal.

  • Bill le Breton 30th Oct '19 - 11:29am

    Having read a lot of stuff on here in the last 24 hours, it is obvious that the first job of the campaign is to convince people that Stop Brexit – Yes we Can!

    Cummins is not a master planner. He’s a a winger who then writes his own story.

    Johnson is not a campaigner. He’s a joker. Rory Stewart took him to the cleaners but by then Johnson was the Tories’ only chance of utter survival. Johnson can’t handle complexity. He needs to be challenged at every moment. Like that guy in the street did. He must be harried. A nice old English word.

    The EU took the Tories to the cleaners on this agreement and will do so with Labour. Johnson’s WA spells utter ruin for the economy of this country.

    Nelson had a simple instruction: engage the enemy more closely.

  • Michael BG: I’d put away the Calculus if I were you.And the same goes for any such system that projects swings uniformly. That isn’t what’s going to happen, even assuming that Johnson maintains his lead throughout the campaign (which is not certain). It doesn’t matter how big the Tory national lead is if the Tories are going to lose swathes of seats in London and the South-East to the Lib Dems, and in Scotland to the SNP (and maybe a couple to us as well?)

  • Denis Loretto 30th Oct '19 - 1:01pm

    Those who say “you are giving Boris Johnson what he wanted” do not seem to understand that he wanted to have an election after getting his withdrawal bill through. Now he is having to defend failing to do so – a fundamental difference. Political leadership means sometimes making judgement calls involving great risk. Jo Swinson, early in her so far notable leadership, has tackled several of these. She and her team, watching the behaviour of a sizeable chunk of the Labour Party and realising that almost all of the so-called Tory rebels were only against no deal and supportive of Johnson’s deal, judged that his withdrawal bill was highly likely to succeed. They knew that , again largely because of Labour divisions, there was no majority currently for a people’s vote even if there was time for a it within any likely Article 50 extension period. We were on the brink of exiting the EU when they made the difficult call for the only available way of stopping that – an election designed to happen while the UK is still in the EU. That, with the assistance of the SNP, has been achieved and there is all to play for.
    Yes highly risky but bear in mind that Lib Dems believe any form of brexit would be highly damaging to our country. As an expatriate Ulsterman I have good reason to give total support to that.

  • Sue Sutherland 30th Oct '19 - 1:08pm

    Personally, I’m on the positive side about our chances in this election. I’ve written quite a long comment on the previous post but because I have little energy due to M.E. I can’t repeat it here. We have a chance of winning far more seats than we had going into Coalition but this will only happen if members get behind our campaign in whatever way we can.
    It’s a make or break campaign for us.

  • Peter Martin 30th Oct '19 - 1:31pm

    If the Tories don’t get an overall majority then we’re pretty sure to have a new EU referendum in the New Year. Possibly with another extension from the EU to allow this to happen. Probably with a Labour minority government.

    The choice is going to be between some “deal” which both Remainers and Leavers dislike equally and Remain. The Leave side will boycott the poll, claiming with some justification that there won’t be a credible Leave option to vote for. Remain will gain a hollow victory and put the wind back into the Brexit Party’s sails.

    I don’t agree with Arnold Kiel on much, but he’s right that this is probably Nigel Farage’s desired outcome! I don’t think it’s the what the EU wants though. How will the EU Parliament will cope with the rowdy Brexit MEPs?

  • Jayne Mansfield 30th Oct '19 - 1:36pm

    @ Denis Loretto,
    It is no great feat to realise that those who voted in favour of Theresa May’s appalling deal were only opposed only to a No deal!

    I agree that Johnson would have, and indeed should have had to defend failing to get an election AFTER getting his withdrawal bill through. This latest political manoeuvre has let him off the hook. He is now cock-a – hoop, or hadn’t you noticed, because he has been allowed to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat.

  • Alex Macfie 30th Oct '19 - 2:16pm

    Peter Martin:

    “How will the EU Parliament will cope with the rowdy Brexit MEPs?”

    Same as it does with the various other far-right groups from various countries who are also there. Brexit Party MEPs have fairly limited influence in the EU Parliament as they are non-inscrit (not belonging to any party group). And if the EP loses Brexit Party MEPs, it also loses the UK Lib Dem MEPs.

  • Denis Loretto 30th Oct '19 - 2:35pm

    @Jayne Mansfield

    Sorry, Jayne, I do not see your point. Earlier in this thread you described yourself as “someone whose family will not only see their professions and industries damaged, but will be personally damaged by Brexit” and yet you seem to be saying here that the Lib Dems should have allowed Johnson to get his bill through before an election was called. Getting his bill through would mean the achievement of brexit, whereas the current course of action gives us at least a chance of stopping this. Am I missing something?

  • clive english 30th Oct '19 - 2:55pm

    How precisely does it amount to an error on Jo’s part or hubris to note that once the SNP were on board and at least some others that a simple majority bill would inevitably pass without even needing a Labour vote for it. How would it help for 20 more MP’s( as it turned out) to increase the votes against the election to 40 and make it look like we were frightened of a poll.
    If you cant stop something its best not to try and fail, unless its on a vital point of principle, which this was not

  • Jo Swinson’s gamble failed; her fig leaf 9th was blown away and Boris Johnson’s ‘glorious twelfth’ will go ahead.
    At the very least a vote of ‘No Confidence’ should’ve been tabled as a condition of allowing a GE and Mr. Johnson humiliated by having Tories abstain to get it through.

    Jo Swinson has played into his hands and umpteen claims of “We’ll win hundreds of new seats” won’t make it so.

    Steve Bell’s incisive ‘If’ says much.

  • Denis Loretto 30th Oct '19 - 3:22pm

    The no confidence route was closed by the insistence of Jeremy Corbyn on his being the interim PM. The rebel Tories and several anti Corbyn Labour MPs would not support that, whatever the Lib Dems did.

  • i confess to being a miserable old git but I side with the optimists here. Politics is in a state of flux and maybe the old rules may be ripe for a shake up. I am a non aligned voter and it may be out of place to offer advice but!!
    Swinson comes across as sincere and honest. One of her two rivals is the exact opposite and the other has converted his 2017 honeymoon ” Oh Jeremy Corbyn” into ” Oh my God, Jeremy Corbyn”
    She has gambled with Revoke and the election but it’s not a bad play at all in the situation. My advice would be now that the party has gambled the farm, then go big or go home.
    I would go gangbusters on revoke, try and get every remain leaner to believe that LibDems are the only ones who are on their side, Tell them the time for marching and fuming are over and they, yes they, can fix it. December 12 is People’s Vote day and it’s time for all those who care about the oncoming generation to put down the banners and pick up a pencil.
    But for the love of God, do not mention UBI, cannabis, immigration or land tax or wealth tax. Just pretend you didn’t hear the question.
    This is a one issue election. Forget manifestos. Just fight the issue.

  • Matt (Bristol) 30th Oct '19 - 3:26pm

    I agree with Denis. And Jayne, Boris would claim he had snatched victory from the jaws of defeat, whatever happened.

  • Denis Loretto 30th Oct ’19 – 3:22pm…[email protected]…The no confidence route was closed by the insistence of Jeremy Corbyn on his being the interim PM. The rebel Tories and several anti Corbyn Labour MPs would not support that, whatever the Lib Dems did….

    It was Jo Swinson who refused to offer any support to Jeremy Corbyn’s offers of a pact,. In fact she dismissed even talking to him as “Nonsense” .

    Anyway, that was then and this is now and, as ‘Supermac’ (supposedly) once said,, “Events, dear boy, events”

    If the polls are even close Jo Swinson will have a lot to answer for. This party has become a one trick pony and extra seats gained by a ‘Remain’ slogan will be, like 2010, just ‘on loan’.

  • Michael Berridge 30th Oct '19 - 3:58pm

    This is not an election we needed. What we needed was a vote on Britain and Europe.
    This is not an election planning the country’s future for the next 5 years.
    This is a Brexit election.

    Hard Rain has got it right.
    Don’t engage in sniping against other opposition parties.
    Don’t be distracted by Lib Dem “sacred cows” such as assisted dying (which I very much support) or drug policy.
    “Just pretend you didn’t hear the question.
    This is a one issue election. Forget manifestos. Just fight the issue.”

  • Denis Loretto 30th Oct '19 - 4:11pm

    I would agree that Jo was, as we say in Ireland, a bit previous with her ruling out of Corbyn, thereby attracting criticism for what she has since pointed out is simply recognising arithmetic. I also have concerns about “one trick pony”. Stop Brexit must be the headline point but we must also set out simply and understandably our main programme for government. And let’s stick to vital issues like poverty, health, education and the environment.

  • Peter Watson 30th Oct '19 - 6:30pm

    @David Allen “the betting markets are in fact predicting 40.5 Lib Dem seats”
    Which of the recent joiners counts as a half Lib Dem? 😉
    I’ll get my coat.

  • Which of the recent joiners counts as a half Lib Dem ?

    The one located between Lewes and Hastings ?

  • Alex Macfie 30th Oct '19 - 7:24pm

    How many seats the Lib Dems will win will depend not on the relative Conservative and Labour national vote shares (as Michael BG implies), but on our ground war in our target seats. Most Lib Dem target seats are Tory-facing, so most Lib Dem gains will be Tory losses. So if the Lib Dems win (say) 60 seats, Johnson almost certainly can’t win a majority. That’s a lot of Northern Labour heartland seats he’d have to win.

  • @Alex Macfie “How many seats the Lib Dems will win will depend not on the relative Conservative and Labour national vote shares (as Michael BG implies), but on our ground war in our target seats.”
    Absolutely right Alex. So in that spirit I want to make a suggestion here, to all people reading this who are party members/supporters but who usually don’t do much more than pay their annual subscription. This election is
    massive for our party. Let’s all please this week do something more than we usually do.
    If (like me) you usually ignore those emails from party HQ asking you for money, how about breaking that habit and actually sending some money? £5, £10 or £20… More if you can manage it. Just as a one-off. Every penny is going to matter, and you want to feel you’ve been part of the campaign. If we all pledge to send a contribution now, we can make a real difference.
    If you’re not a member you can donate anyway: Go on. Do it now and help us win big on 12/12!

  • chris moore 30th Oct '19 - 7:52pm

    David Raw 30th Oct ’19 – 7:10pm
    Which of the recent joiners counts as a half Lib Dem ?
    The one located between Lewes and Hastings ?

    Ah, you spurn the opportunity to show some generosity to the returning prodigal.

  • Richard Underhill. 30th Oct '19 - 8:12pm

    Denis Loretto is a Lib Dem member, whom I always respect and with whom I usually agree. Jayne Mansfield blogs often on this site but is clearly not a member. Perhaps she is trying to persuade us to do something different. If Jeremy Corbyn wants a Labour government he should resign before the general election, taking a cue from the Australian Labour Party.
    It is probably too late for that now, but his shadow chancellor has said that Corbyn will resign if he loses another general election, defined as not achieving a majority of MPs.
    The news is currently saying that Nicky Morgan is not standing again, partially because of abuse, making the total retirees up from 57 to 58. Elected as a committee chair she was good, but took the shilling and promised to be a leaver in Boris’ cabinet. He kissed her at the Tory conference, on live tv, after the leader’s speech, to her obvious surprise. Male cabinet members got a handshake.
    Jo Swinson’s colour leaflet has been brandished on BBC1 Politics Live and on The Andrew Neil Show. She stood up well to his interviewing style. he has been called an “alpha male” (by a Labour frontbencher he knows). maybe they will read the inside pages.

  • Richard Underhill. 30th Oct '19 - 8:19pm

    John Curtice is not a weather forecaster. Did he read the Sunday Times in 2016?
    There was very heavy rain in the afternoon of polling day where we are near London.
    The Sunday Times reported on analysis of voting in London boroughs compared with rainfall on the day.

  • Jayne Mansfield 30th Oct '19 - 9:28pm

    @ Richard Underhill,

    I am a member of no political party.

    A General election is not, a Brexit election, whatever politicians would wish us to believe.

    As for me trying to persuade you to do things differently. I am not so stupid as to believe that people who live in a bubble of one dimensional reality can be persuaded of anything.

    If some in your party had spent the last three plus years trying to see things through the eyes of those who voted leave instead of insulting them, perhaps the extreme polarisation might have been mitigated and a compromise might have been possible. But of course, your party would never accept compromise, so we now have this reckless gamble.

  • Jayne Mansfield 30th Oct '19 - 11:04pm

    @ Roger Billins,
    The majority of seats you are contesting are Conservative/ Liberal Democrat seats, so I hope that you succeed in those seats.

    In the North where I live, the alternative to Labour seems to be either Conservative or Brexit. I have lost count of the number of people who have told me, that they have been Labour all their lives, but they intend to vote for one or other of the right wing parties that I mention. I am speaking of constituencies held by such people as Yvette Cooper, Ed Miliband and others of a particular mindset.

    My greatest fear as someone who as an acknowledged left of centre voter who once felt comfortable as a Liberal , left of Labour party supporter, and indeed its various metamorphoses, is that a) one calls for an election when one has a fighting chance of winning it, and b) this election will not just determine Brexit, but the sort of government Boris Johnson and his crew will inflict upon those can least defend themselves.

  • @Jayne

    You’re absolutely right, there are some very important issues raised by 17.4 million falling in behind Leave in 2016. And those issues deserve serious engagement and change. Which I for one would delighted to get going as soon as we’ve got rid of the main threat, Brexit.

  • Nonconformistradical 31st Oct '19 - 8:08am

    “there are some very important issues raised by 17.4 million falling in behind Leave in 2016. And those issues deserve serious engagement and change. Which I for one would delighted to get going as soon as we’ve got rid of the main threat, Brexit.”

    Exactly. Because Brexit won’t solve those problems faced by those falling behind.

  • George Burn 30th Oct ’19 – 11:20pm…@Jayne…..You’re absolutely right, there are some very important issues raised by 17.4 million falling in behind Leave in 2016. And those issues deserve serious engagement and change. Which I for one would delighted to get going as soon as we’ve got rid of the main threat, Brexit………………..

    That’s magnanimous of you.
    It translates as “When we have overturned what you voted for we can then discuss why you voted for what we’ve cancelled”

  • expats

    “It translates as “When we have overturned what you voted for we can then discuss why you voted for what we’ve cancelled”

    Absolutely right. It’s this attitude that is driving many, normally moderate voters to the Tory and Brexit parties. It’s sheer frustration at the arrogance.

  • Laurence Cox 31st Oct '19 - 12:51pm

    In Charles Kennedy’s old seat of Ross, Skye and Lochaber, there are already reports that the Tories and Labour are giving us a ‘free run’ to defeat the SNP leader, Ian Blackford.

  • Alex Maxfie,

    How many seats is a swathe? About 12?

    That would give the SNP 12 gains in Scotland, us 12 in London and another 12 in south east England, then with another 12 across the rest of the country we will end up in the region of 50 MPs. This is a realistic aim.

    Do you have any figures for the spread of swings to us in 2001 and 2005 in our target seats? I think we get better swings in our target areas where we have the resources to fight full (in your face) campaigns.

    Bill Le Breton,

    Are you really saying we could end up with more than 200 MPs after this general election? I will bet you £1000 at evens that we will not. We have a leader who publically states it is possible for us to be the largest party after the general election. This means winning more than 200 seats (if the seats are nearly evenly distributed between the three main parties).

    The majority of members were not members before 2010; they are not getting a targeting message from the party. We need to learn the lesson of Cleggmania and try to get the huge majority of constituencies to only do the freepost election leaflet and another leaflet for people to deliver when they can’t be encouraged to work in a target seat and for their held and target council wards.

    Hard Rain,

    As we are likely not to have a radical manifesto which deals with poverty, the left behind and the economic issues which resulted in the Leave vote, then we should focus on Brexit. We should attack the Conservatives and their vision for Brexit and ignore Labour, except to make it clear that we will support any Prime Minister who will hold a referendum on a deal and staying in the EU and will not support a PM who thinks a no deal Brexit is acceptable.

  • Whilst I have some reservations about this December poll, risks in all routes and there was a danger the WAB would have got through and without any chance of a Referendum whatever some on the Labour side are claiming. Whilst it could all go wrong may not necessarily be a Johnston gift with the unpredictability and if Government can be held to account. Early elections in the past (not just 2017) have thrown up some surprises.

    However, it is the two main parties who are getting the bulk of publicity right now and the Liberal Democrats need to get their message across effectively, whether we are frozen out of some of the debates or not. (though travesty if so). I am a bit concerned that thus far we do not seem to be trailing policies other than Brexit in the media even if our campaign yet to get under full swing must ensure we stay in the nation’s mind. Whilst cannot get too fixated by polls slipping in the latest batch. Brexit may dominate but others want to shift the focus and the agenda throughout the weeks cannot be totally controlled. Need to explain clearly how ability to deal with other issues would be adversely affected by Brexit.

  • Richard Underhill 21st Apr '20 - 11:12am

    30th Oct ’19 – 8:19pm
    Forecasts of the Tyson-Wilder fight are also available.
    The most reliable is that the winner will want a unification fight with Anthony Joshua.

  • Richard Underhill 22nd Apr '20 - 4:21pm

    Hard Rain 30th Oct ’19 – 3:26pm
    “do not mention UBI, cannabis, immigration or land tax or wealth tax”
    The SNP Commons leader said that now is the right time for Universal Basic Income.
    Dominic Raab (Con) disagreed. Is this something that Scotland can do alone?

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