Monday, 25 November 2019

GE 2019 The ITV Debate

Last Tuesday the ITV held a 'debate' between the PM Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn.

It was not a debate in the real sense more like two individual interviews glued together. There was an audience with questions, which were longer than the answers, but every time one of the two prepared a response, it was cut short by the host. I am sure the 50 minutes could have been used more prudently to allow each side a chance to get their statements across.

Hosted by news presenter Julie Etchingham, the head-to-head marks the first time since 2015 that both the Labour and Conservative party leaders have taken part in a TV debate. It is telling on how well leaders perform in these kinds of debates, which can make or break their popularity with voters.

Boris Johnson faced dismissive laughs when confronted over whether politicians respected the truth as both party leaders struggled to convince a sceptical audience during the programme. Mr Johnson started off strongly as Jeremy Corbyn was unable to give a convincing answer on his Brexit policy for the first 10 minutes, but both were then hit by moments of disdain as they moved onto issues of the union, anti-semitism and the toxic debate that plagues politics. Jeremy Corbyn was mocked over his Brexit policy by a live television audience after he refused nine times to say whether he thought Britain should leave the EU or remain.

The final audience question was "What Christmas present would you give each other"? Jeremy Corbyn joked he would leave a copy of A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens under Boris Johnson's tree. Boris Johnson had the audience and ITV Leaders' Debate moderator Julie Etchingham grinning with his response. The Conservative leader said: "I would probably leave a copy of – since he made a literary effort – my brilliant Brexit deal which allows us to come out.

It was too short and interrupted [by the host too much] to say whether one side or the other had come out on top. However, a draw at least allows Jeremy Corbyn to give a sigh of relief as their polls fall ever lower and could be considered a win!

Monday, 18 November 2019

GE 2019 Who is leading?

One of the threats to a Conservative majority is the Brexit party standing in the other seats after saying they would not stand in the 317 seats held by the 2017 conservative. There is a chance that the Brexit party will take seats from the Lib Dems where there is a strong leave base, as the Lib Dems are fully remain.

There are no threats to the Labour majority as it will not happen, not while Jeremy Corbyn is leader, however, just changing the leader is not enough for any party just to sweep the board. The Labour party are not working for a majority they are working specifically to stop the Conservative majority.

In 2015 the Brexit party took one seat from Labour and three seats from the Conservatives. What Nigel Farage would like is to have enough seats to be a bridge between all parties like the DUP are now. This is still unrealistic but there is a real chance that the Brexit party can damage all the others which will create another hung parliament.

One of the crucial statistics currently being shown is that 60% of leavers in Labour seats will vote conservative and 40% of leavers in Labour seats will vote Labour. this if true will be a huge help to the Conservative campaign.

Who is going to grab the 'new' vote? This time round there are those who could not vote in the 2016 referendum or the 2017 election because of age, they have been witnesses to the Brexit scandal, how will their vote affect the overall picture, are they keen enough or are they more interested in the environment and climate change?

More questions than answers but there is plenty of time to get them over the next four weeks, which are going to be very difficult for pollsters to predict.

Monday, 11 November 2019

GE19 - Battle Lines

If there is to be one winner, what needs to be done by the parties to achieve this?

One phrase flying round is "The Red Wall" this is an area across the North West that extends from North Wales all the way across England to Yorkshire. If the Conservatives can win more Labour strongholds here a majority is possible.

One conundrum at present is what effect the Brexit party will be during this election, will they devastate the Labour party or the Conservative party, if the Brexit party does well, there is a good chance that there will be no majority for anyone.

The Lib Dems have their eyes on moderate Conservative seats in the South where the Conservatives are becoming tired with the Brexit mantra. In London, the Lib Dems might have more success without trying because Labour are struggling in the capital, not just because of Brexit.

What can Labour do to gain a majority in GE19?

There are about 40-50 seats that the Conservatives hold that are considered marginal and Labour need to work hard to pull these seats towards themselves. Another example is where Conservatives are standing down this time. The capitol is going to be difficult for Labour this time round. Of course all Labour really need to do is stop the Conservatives getting a majority, and frankly that should be a no brainer.

The Lib Dems have agreed a deal between the Greens and Plaid Cymru covering 60 seats which is 10% of the total, no one knows how this will pan out, however, if the three control these 60 seats it will have a crucial effect on a Conservative/Labour majority position.

Thursday, 7 November 2019

GE19 - Plot Twist

If you thought Tom Watson standing down as deputy leader of the Labour party was a shock to the system, this morning Ian Austin a Labour MP and party member for 14 years has made a plea to the general public to vote Conservative!

Ian Austin announced on BBC radio 4 Today program in an emotional statement that he will not contest the Dudley North seat he has held since 2005 over fears that he could take votes off the Conservative candidate and hand victory to Labour.

Ian Austin actually left Labour last February and has held the seat as an independent.

The Labour party has been spoiled by racism, extremism and intolerance under Jeremy Corbyn's leadership, the deterioration under Mr Corbyn and its [laughable] stance on Brexit has left them unfit to run the country.

Ian Austin said "The country faces a big choice. There are only two people who can be prime minister on 13 December: Jeremy Corbyn or Boris Johnson and I think Jeremy Corbyn is completely unfit to lead our country, completely unfit to lead the Labour Party."