Across the studios for the Sunday shows yesterday the Corbynista’s line-to-take included quoting the BBC projection. Not often you see Corbynistas quoting the BBC approvingly nowadays, yesterday they were keen on the legitimising glow of the establishment broadcaster’s extrapolation. Do you remember the uniform swing projections in 2014? The BBC predicted after the 2014 local elections that in the 2015 general election Labour would beat the Tories by 67 parliamentary seats and that the LibDems would win 45 seats in the Commons. It didn’t work out like that did it?
Turned out Lynton Crosby had seen the projections too and ruthlessly concentrated CCHQ’s firepower on South West LibDems. Result was the LibDems were wiped out and the first majority Tory government for decades took office. There is never a uniform swing because of this reflexivity between polling and campaign resource deployment.
Here are a few more reasons why the BBC’s projection is likely to turn out to be as rubbish as their last one:
Guido will eat his hat be very surprised if it is Corbyn versus May. The Tories have not been the ruling party for most of the last century for nothing. The party’s sense of self preservation will not see them go to battle with a brittle leader unable to empathetically connect with voters on any level. The Tories do not intend to repeat that mistake.
No party will allocate campaign resources uniformly. They will aim to deploy resources to maximise their impact. CCHQ and almost everyone else got the polling wrong in 2017 and therefore deployed their resources in the wrong places. Jeremy got lucky.
Remain backing Tories will return to the party post March 2019, motivated by the real fear of Marxists occupying Downing Street. Floating voters will not want to risk Chancellor McDonnell in government with his plans to hike taxes and nationalise anything that moves, pumps or powers the economy.
The Tories have learnt what doesn’t work against Corbyn with swing voters; his unsavoury friendships with radicals in Latin America, the Middle East or Northern Ireland are not a bread and butter issue for most swing voters. They only confirm the worst fears of his opponents…
There are some qualifications to this;
the Tories could go mad and select another wooden dud unable to connect with voters like, say, Jeremy Hunt.
the government could manage to fumble Brexit so badly that Britain is effectively still in the EU and UKIP comes back at their expense.
the Tories could produce another punish the voters manifesto.
the global economy could go into recession in the next three years with the blame put on the incumbent government.
Guido’s sense is that Labour’s underperformance does not signal a change of government. Unless things dramatically change a Corbyn government is less likely this week than it was last week…