Liberal Democrat Defence List

These are the remaining Liberal Democrat seats ordered by the lowest percentage majorities. This does not necessarily mean that the seats at the top would be the most vulnerable Liberal Democrats seats in practice.

1. Southport Majority 1322 (3%)
2. Carshalton & Wallington Majority 1510 (3.2%)
3. Orkney & Shetland Majority 817 (3.6%)
4. Sheffield, Hallam Majority 2353 (4.2%)
5. Leeds North West Majority 2907 (6.7%)
6. Ceredigion Majority 3067 (8.2%)
7. North Norfolk Majority 4043 (8.2%)
8. Westmorland & Lonsdale Majority 8949 (18.3%)
Comments - 1,125 Responses on “Lib Dem Defence”
  1. I agree as well. If anything, the Lib Dems might do badly once more in the next set of locals as they fade away into irrelevance having been nearly depleted in Parliament.

  2. My money is still on the beginnings of a recovery at the next locals – the pavement pounders will be back out, no longer embarrassed by being in bed with the Tories and slowly the Lib Dems will start to pick up some non-Labour protest votes.

    2017/18 will be very significant because if (as others on this thread strongly suspect) there is no significant Lib Dem recovery as this parliament matures, then panic really will start to set in. It’s interesting listening to Farron who seems to really believe that the electorate are somehow now a bit remorseful for inflicting such a cataclysm on his party. He cites evidence of a bounce in membership for this curious theory.

  3. In at least four of these seats (Ceredigion, Leeds North West, Sheffield Hallam and O&S) the Lib Dem MPs are reliant on tactical Conservative votes.

    What an irony it would be if Farron’s more left wing approach won them support from those who left after 2010 in the rest of the country, but pulled the rug out from under their right-wing incumbents.

  4. If anything they will get wiped out in many county councils next year – Essex and Lincs spring to mind.

  5. I’d be shocked if they got wiped out in many county council next year as they’re not up for election until 2017 surely

  6. Bearing in mind that they were already polling single figures when these seats were last contested, I would not be surprised by a small bounce back. The Scottish election will not be much of a guide to the rest of the UK but the Welsh Assembly election might be.

  7. but of course they had a bad night in 2011 and still managed to do a lot worse when those seats were contested again this year

  8. Would be surprising if the LDs were completely wiped out in Essex considering that they still have some quite strong wards in, especially, Colchester & Chelmsford. Lincolnshire is harder territory for them l suspect, in terms of getting close to being wiped out.

  9. The Lib Dems can now add Richmond Park to that defence list.

  10. @Thomas yeah but it will probably be a tricky one to defend in a general election year unless they surge nationwide and the Tories get themselves extremely unpopular. Also I don’t think this site updates for by election gains.

  11. @Thomas, they will lose it at the next General Election when the Tories put up a Remain-supporting posho

  12. They may hold a couple more seats by 2020 anyway

  13. @Conservative Estimate

    I think you are neglecting a number of factors which may not make it as easy to regain this seat as you seem to think it will be.

    1) The seat has historically been strong for the Lib Dems. Zac Goldsmith won the seat off Susan Kramer pretty narrowly based upon his celebrity and reputation as a ‘nice Tory’. The seat provided the Lib Dems with 44, 47 and 46% share of the vote in each election up to 2015 and pre-Zac the Tories never topped 40% in the seat. The exception was 2015 when the Lib Dems were punished for the ‘coalition’ Government and the education promise. That effect has now started to fade, as in hindsight many people now see just how well the Lib Dems did in curbing the worst Tory excesses and memories of Nick Clegg’s broken promise fades. Simply standing a ‘Remain-Supporting Posho’ is not going to be enough to cut it!

    2) On the subject of Brexit I think you and many others are neglecting to see the many downsides that will start kicking in as the process goes along and this will particularly felt in London. I do not think the Tories are going to regain anything like their 2015 vote share in this constituency – particularly with a fresh candidate.

    3) You are also forgetting that Sarah Olney will now benefit from an incumbency bonus. As a native of Carshalton & Wallington I have seen with my own eyes how a good Lib Dem MP can really embed themselves through copious amounts of effort and casework.

    While the Lib Dems are languishing in the polls nationally they will significantly outperform in areas of strength and particularly in seats where they are seen as having a legitimate chance of winning the seat. They also (usually) benefit from the ‘shared airtime’ and coverage that occurs when a General Election is called.

    Based on yesterday’s result I would suggest that the Tory MP’s in Sutton, Kingston and Twickenham should be a little twitchy and this could potentially extend to other Tory seats in pro-Remain London (particularly if Jeremy Corybyn remains Labour leader).

  14. So, Tim Farron today said that Tory MPs who oppose a hard brexit should join the Lib Dems. I can’t really think of any Tory MP (or Labour MP, for that matter) who seems like they might defect to the Lib Dems, so it seems more like rhetoric and a total pipe dream. Anyone disagree? And if you do disagree, who’re the candidates for defection?

  15. David Lammy^

  16. Actually I think Ben Bradshaw would be the most likely.

    If Anna Soubry was deselected she might consider it.

  17. I can’t see either Ben Bradshaw or David Lammy defecting tbh

  18. I can’t say I see either David Lammy or Ben Bradshaw defecting

  19. The Lib Dems are nowhere in both Exeter and Broxtowe, though.

  20. Oldnat,

    You don’t need the Greens to discuss Land Value Tax on a south of the border thread. It has been Lib Dem policy since before I can remember and was in the 2015 manifesto.

    As a supporter of PR I am sure you will also have noted that the Lib Dems are the largest party in terms of UK support advocating that policy..

  21. Oops! Put that on the wrong thread!

  22. ‘The Lib Dems are nowhere in both Exeter and Broxtowe, though.’

    While true, I think Bradshaw at least would have a good chance at holding his seat as a defector (not that I expect him to defect).

  23. Remember also that Soubry is reportedly one of the Tory MPs under investigation for expenses fraud

  24. I would very surprised if any MP were implicated, rather than just their agent. So while their seat could be declared vacant for a re-run, they could stand again and I think in general the perception amongst swing-voters wouldn’t be against them personally on that issue.

    Regarding seats and defectors, if anything I think not having a significant local party/ past support (but friendly demographics/ opinions) is the ideal situation

  25. If the LibDems were able to get you a seat on a committee, chair of a committee, a lordship ever again, more like-minded parliamentarians than your current party (all they can offer is a better ratio), then I think defection would be actively considered by some…
    …but 2015 was just so devastating, it’s too small a pool – and if anything offers less of a platform than being part of a civil war (Labour) or potential crucial-vote rebel (Tory).
    In both cases I imagine they still feel it’s a matter of time before they’ll be some worth-hoping-for opportunity to regain ‘their party’… Or if they don’t, there’s jobs at Sellafield and the V&A.

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