After constant teasing of an election by Boris Johnson’s government we have finally entered election season. It seemed like it was inevitable and within touching distance, however never able to reach it, until now. And going into this election the polls looks very similar to 2017 with the Conservatives far ahead while Labour are trailing behind, but could we see a Labour turnaround like in 2017 and even this time delivering a Labour win? Maybe.
its important firstly however to revisit 2017 and look at why that Conservative collapse and Labour gain happened. A variety of reasons could be put forward for why the 2017 election ended like it ended, from a supposed ‘youthquake’, Conservative policy like the disastrous dementia tax to the end of the triple lock on state pensions and maybe even solely down to Theresa May with her now iconic phrase “strong and stable” the reasons for 2017 are endless, however one stands out. Labour had a fairly positive campaign, a campaign which focused on policy not on constant attacks like Theresa May did towards Jeremy Corbyn. I’m not saying of course that Corbyn was some perfect choir boy himself, but it became clear the later the campaign went on the attacks Theresa May did towards Corbyn grew while talking about what the Conservatives would do in government lessened. Labour focused far more on pushing their policy and less on personal attacks.
Looking at the Labour policy two years ago it certainly was popular as polling ComRes did for the Daily Mirror showed as policies for renationalisation were more popular then unpopular with renationalising railways for example having 52% support with only 22% opposed. It isn’t only renationalisation which proved to be popular but also banning zero-hour contracts, increasing tax on people earning over £80,000 a year and others.
Labour’s policies are still popular also as 60% of people want railways to be nationalised and 55% want water to be nationalised and other polling showing 55% of people support free university tuition for all students. This is where Labour could really gain on the Conservatives as they have the popular policy which people will vote for and people are looking for to vote on things other then Brexit. Brexit is the biggest issue in this election, with 59% of people believing it’s one of the biggest issues facing Britain, but its not the only issue facing Britain as 37% of people view healthcare as one of the biggest issues facing Britain, 29% the economy, 26% the environment, the list continues. And these are issues which generally Labour could do well on as the promise of not selling the NHS to America which they’ve accused the Conservatives of planning to do, protecting Britain’s economy from a No-Deal Brexit or presenting radical policy on tackling climate change, these are the issues which Labour could win on this election.
Labour’s weak point however is the understanding of Labour’s Brexit policy. They’ve flip flopped between supporting a Brexit deal protecting workers rights to now a 2nd referendum with a Labour deal vs remain and this flip flopping has punished them. Only 21% of the public understands Labour policies while 65% don’t understand showing a clear communication issue between Labour and the public and this is something the Conservatives are targeting, just look at the Conservatives twitter to have a taste.
The polling isn’t looking great also for Labour with them seemingly stuck in the 20%’s while the Conservatives are close to 40%, it wouldn’t be the first time though Labour have beaten the odds if they were too, 2017 being a testament to that. Many predicted that Labour were going to be annihilated and the Conservatives would have a majority to end all majorities but neither of these things happened, instead we got a hung parliament.
Predicting this election will be impossible as controversy and craziness seems to be a daily occurrence in are current climate so predicting a Labour win isn’t as crazy as you thought.