Corbyn Drops Even Lower as Least Popular Opposition Leader in History

New polling by Ipsos MORI today has revealed Jeremy Corbyn is solidifying his position as the least popular Leader of the Opposition in the history of British politics. No surprise he keeps voting down an election…

At the end of June, Corbyn dropped to the lowest ever LOTO rating with -58 approval, but today he has surpassed even that – dropping a clear four points behind Michael Foot’s personal best. He went on to lead Labour to its worst defeat since before the second world war, granting the Tories a 144 seat majority…

This is a pretty dire situation for Labour, as PoliticalBetting points out, he would have to stage a recovery far in excess of what happened in 2017 to have any hope of winning. Labour faces bigger challenges of a more charismatic Tory leader, a resurgent Lib Dems, and far fewer voters who categorise themselves as ‘undecided’. Corbyn’s poll rating before that election was just -25%, half as unpopular as today…

May to Stand in Next Election

Unlike David Cameron who bolted from public life the moment he resigned as PM, Theresa May will be standing in the next election. Just think of the riveting backbench speeches we have in store…

Maidenhead Tories confirmed her re-selection this weekend, however her selection was never really in doubt – Guido knows how good she is at remaining…

Leave Beat the SNP in Half of Their Westminster Seats

The SNP love going on about how more Remain votes than Leave votes came from Scotland in the United Kingdom’s EU referendum. They don’t like mentioning that more than a million Scots voted to leave, or the fact that if you disregard the Leave votes from Scotland and Northern Ireland, Remain would have won. Guido has compiled some data that might offer the Scot Nats a reason to think again about ignoring the sizeable contingent of Scottish Brexiteers…

In half of the SNPs 35 seats, the Leave percentage outweighed the SNP vote share in the 2017 election. The SNP MPs who have cause to be worried are:

  • Kirsty Blackman Aberdeen North 41.3 SNP 43.09 Leave
  • Neil Gray Airdrie and Shotts 37.6 SNP 39.84 Leave
  • Brendan O’Hara Argyll and Bute 36 SNP  39.43 Leave
  • Phillipa Whitford Central Ayrshire 37.2 SNP 41.62 Leave
  • Douglas Chapman Dunfermline and West Fife 35.5 SNP 39.39 Leave
  • John McNally Falkirk 38.9 SNP 43.2 Leave
  • David Linden Glasgow East 38.8 SNP 43.84 Leave
  • Chris Stephens Glasgow South West 40.7 SNP 40.86 Leave
  • Peter Grant Glenrothes 42.8 SNP 47.61 Leave
  • Drew Hendry Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch and Strathspey 39.9 SNP 40.13 Leave
  • Angela Crawley Lanark and Hamilton East 32.6 SNP 35.96 Leave
  • Martyn Day Linlithgow and East Falkirk 36.3 SNP 42.02 Leave
  • Hannah Bardell Livingston 40.1 SNP 43.26 Leave
  • Angus MacNeil Na h-Eileanan an Iar 40.6 SNP 43.9 Leave
  • Patricia Gibson North Ayrshire and Arran 38.9 SNP 42.4 Leave
  • Stephen Gethins North East Fife 32.9 SNP 41.4 Leave (Fife only stats available)
  • Ian Blackford Ross, Skye & Lochaber 40.3 SNP 43.49 Leave

The Tories becoming the Leave Party might not be such a bad move in Scotland after all…

Labour’s Website Contradicts Their Policy

The Labour Party has shifted position on an election so much that their website currently hosts a page published less than a week ago that says Labour will back an election as soon as their Surrender Bill passed. The bill passed. Not a single Labour MP voted for an election last night…

Election Speculation Summary

In case Guido readers haven’t had time to keep up with the rumour mill, here’s what’s going down in the Westminster Bubble as election speculation reaches boiling point:

  • The PM has convened a last-minute cabinet meeting for 5 pm, with the BBC’s Laura Kuenssberg saying Boris will discuss calling an election this week
  • This is well-timed to be followed by a previously-arranged garden party with all Tory MPs. Great way to get all his MPs in one place for any announcements…
  • No. 10 have publicly said they are treating tomorrow’s Remainer plot to take over the House of Commons Order Paper as an implicit vote of confidence in the Government’s negotiation strategy – many are reading into this as a vote of confidence in the government as a whole.
  • In the event of a government defeat on Tuesday or Wednesday, Boris would seek an election.
  • Questions still linger over when the election would be held if it is agreed by Parliament – a decision the government would take a lead on.
  • If it was Boris’s desire to hold an election as soon as possible, Parliament could agree to an election on the September 5, and hold it as soon as October 10.
  • Some remainer MPs have become paranoid the PM could call an election with what appears to be a “reasonable” polling date before October 31, then use prerogative powers to move the polling day out until after the Brexit deadline. Making a No Deal Brexit a fait accompli regardless of the election outcome…

Stick with Guido for any further updates…

UPDATE: Watch Tory Party Chairman, James Cleverly, fail to rule out an election three times:

UPDATE II: The Sun now saying Boris will call an election for 5 week’s time if the rebel MPs manage to pass anti-No Deal legislation tomorrow – perhaps as early as Wednesday. Something he can do provided he has 2/3 majority support of MPs…

UPDATE III: The Brexit Party has released a statement saying it is open to a non aggression electoral pact with the Tories, if Boris completely abandons the Withdrawal Agreement beyond the backstop.

“Nigel Farage has made clear that the Brexit Party would put Country before party if Boris Johnson commits to an unambiguous, No Deal Brexit. We can make Boris a hero in that situation. A non aggression pact Leave Alliance would deliver a very significant majority for this position.

If Johnson brings back a re-hashed version of May’s Non Withdrawal Treaty, just without the dreaded backstop, is not Brexit and we will oppose his candidates in every seat, denying the Tories hope of victory. Partnership is the best way to deliver what 17.4m voted for”.

Damian Hinds Leaks ‘GE2019’ Email

Former Secretary of State for Education Damian Hinds has (presumably accidentally) leaked a screenshot of his email drafts folder on his public Instagram story. Provocatively the subject is “~RE: Re[2]: GE2019 team thoughts & i…”

The draft message appears to be part of a much longer email chain and is addressed to Debbie Curnow-Ford, a local Conservative activist in his constituency, and a ‘Julie’, presumably his local association chairwoman Julie Butler. The leak is decidedly off-message, but adds fuel to the worst kept secret in British politics. Everyone is gearing up for an election this year…

As of Guido going to pixel the awkward screenshot is still online on his story

UPDATE: After 20 hours, Hinds has finally got round to deleting the accidental post

Osborne Claims Tory MPs Will Force Election To Avoid No Deal

George Osborne has popped up on Bloomberg TV to say that he feels the likelihood of an imminent election is “underappreciated” and that a number of Conservative MPs would back Corbyn in a vote of no confidence because “they would rather have a general election than see our country leave the EU without a deal.”

The Sun revealed last night that secret CCHQ projections project in such an election Jeremy Corbyn would win enough seats to command a majority in Parliament. Guido isn’t sure that even FBPE Tories are mad enough to enable a Corbyn government…

Election Alert: Tories Open Candidate Selections in Swathes of Unwinnable Seats

Tonight the Tories have opened up three tranches of candidate selections for the least-winnable seats across the country. The ones that you’d only normally select right before a general election…

Although this decision was taken before the result of the confidence vote, this shows the Tories are firmly getting on an election footing. The seats are all set to have fast-track selections with CCHQ aiming to have a candidate in place in every seat by the end of the month. Whether people want to become candidates for unwinnable seats with no guarantee of an upcoming election is another matter…

Read the full list below. Deep breath…

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Quote of the Day

In response to the news that Emily Thornberry described the Lib Dems as “like the Taliban” over their new revoke Article 50 Brexit policy, the former Lib Dem leader responded:

“Come on Emily, if we really were like a Middle East terrorist group, don’t you think Jeremy would’ve invited us to a conference fringe meeting before now?”

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