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Saturday, November 19, 2016

How high are the electoral stakes on Brexit?

The lay of the land is that the Tories and UKIP are committed to coming out of the European Union, the Liberal Democrats want a referendum on any deal and Labour, well Labour are all over the shop but seem to be leaning towards a soft Brexit.

Just what impact these positions could have on the future electoral prospects of these parties has been revealed by a new poll.

The Independent reports that a YouGov survey has concluded that the Liberal Democrats could beat Labour at the next general election because of their pledge to hold a second EU referendum.

According to the survey if all the parties except the Liberal Democrats said they would press ahead with Brexit, my party would gain 22 per cent of the vote, while Labour would score just 19 per cent.

The Conservatives would come first with 39 per cent of the vote and UKIP would take 14 per cent.

They say that the results would produce a notional Tory majority in the Commons of over 100 seats, according to an electoral calculus projection of the results.

Labour, the Conservatives and UKIP have all already said they would accept the result of Brexit – while the Liberal Democrats have said they would offer a second referendum.

The stakes are very high but Tim Farron's principled position on our membership of the EU certainly has the potential to help a Liberal Democrats revival.
Hi Peter, I tweeted ~ 4 polls to you that failed to register anything remotely approaching the numbers that you included in the blog. As an ex Lib Dem supporter from 1997 I have a great affinity with many of the policies and outlook of the party, but for me and I'm sure many others the Europe issue has caused much angst and fear that it will remain a huge thorn for yourselves. I realise that the party is fully committed to a 2nd Referendum and would maybe campaign at a future GE for a return in the expectation of gaining Labour remain Voters, whilst this seems plausible I really consider this will cause even greater antipathy to yourselves

Surely the whole point is to offer voters a choice. At the moment only the Liberal Democrats are offering the option of a referendum on the outcome of the Brexit negotiations. That is entirely consistent with our principles, policies and the long traditions of the party. The poll is a snapshot as are all polls, but it measures something different to that referred to in the polls you quote. There are signs of a Lib Dem revival in actual voting figures in by-elections but it will be a long hard slog back.
I realise you are far more politically 'savvy' than myself, would it be implausible that the Labour vote that appears to be up for grabs in the former Industrial heartlands of N.England,Midland,S.Wales would be shared between UKIP/Tory as they offer the more popular option for those folks(leavers).
Fully take your point about offering options to the electorate,but would Plaid offer that pro-EU option (Wales only of course. Again my thoughts are obviously counter to existing LD policy but really think that the Party needs a radical rethink here to reverse the decline+ potential political suicide.....there are a few of us out there who are closet ex-LD who would never return with the existing EU policy.
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