2017 ELECTION BLOG (1)
Most elections end up with a messy result. Will this be different? . Theresa has called it about Brexit but no election ends up being about the issue its called on. Nor will this.
First it can't be about the negotiations. They've not yet begun and won't go anywhere until the French and German elections are over. It may strengthen Theresa's hand. It won't change attitudes in the EU. Negotiation will still be a tough game of bluster and bluff in which no one in Britain can choose or influence whether it leads to a soft Brexit, a hard Brexit or a Brexitless Brexit.
Second the LibDems and the SNP won't dare to stand on an honest platform of "let's stay in the EU. We love it so". Nor will they want to defy the decision of the electorate to come out. So they'll go on about a softer, nicer, fluffier Brexit and keeping Britain in the single market with our huge deficit ignoring the fact that they cant do anything to achieve any of it. (see above)
Third Labour should fight on the basic social issues: health, education welfare, the minimum wage and a better deal for working people and the left behind areas were Brexit vote was strongest. Shut up about the EU, Brexit and the impossible conditions you've been setting out. Ask what kind of government people want for the next five years; gradgrind or altruistic? Portray a bigger Tory majority as a bigger chance to screw the country.
Fourth. MPs who win can take solace from the fact that that they'll now have their seat as for five years not the two before the big reshuffle.MPs who lose can take comfort in not having to face the mess that comes afterwards They can claim that its happened because they're no longer there.
Sixth. The bigger a government's majority the more likely it is to make a mess. The worse a party does the more it's likely to change its leader.The better third and fourth parties do, the worse the mess we're in.Take your pick
Seventh The polls get it right more than they get it wrong but polls before people know there's going to be an election don't count. People think differently when they'll decide an election. Don't project the result from today's polls. The Tories will do worse than is claimed.The LibDems better.
Eighth. How daft it was to tie Parliament down to a fixed five year term and then have to resort to subterfuge to get an early election. Almost as daft as reducing the House to 600 just when so much more work is coming .
Ninth Watch George Osborne to see how to edit the Evening Standard in London and fight a seat in Cheshire. Step forward Martin Bell
Tenth The more the Tories look certain to win with a big majority the stronger the pound. But the more likely are spending cuts to reduce the rising deficit Go on a foreign holiday before, or on 8 June.