The Times this morning report that the government are to drop the 600 seat boundary review and start again with a 650 seat review. A few technical points on this:

  • The rules and timetable for the Boundary Commission are set out in statute, meaning that any changes will require primary legislation. Until the law is changed the current review will continue, based on 600 seats and a deadline of 2018. To go back to a target of 650 seats the government will need to pass new legislation changing the rules to 650 seats, and starting up a new review from scratch.
  • That legislation will be an opportunity to change other boundary rules. In the Times article there’s a quote from Labour saying they’d support the change back to 650 seats, but no doubt they’ll have some other recommendations too were the government to try and get cross-party support for the Bill. Even if the government aim to change only the 600 seat rule, there will be opportunity for the Bill to be amended in other ways as it passes through the Commons and Lords. Two things to really keep an eye on are how close to the quota the boundary review requires seats to be (currently 5%, but the Private Member’s Bill that Labour supported last year would have changed that to 10%) and how often they need to happen (currently 5 years, but the Labour Bill last year suggested ten years). Either change would make things a bit better for Labour – as a general rule, strict equality requirements and frequent reviews favour the Tories, more flexible equality requirements and less frequent reviews favour Labour.
  • Timing will be a little tight, especially if the Bill doesn’t get cross-party support and gets tied up in the Lords. On the current rules it takes three years to carry out a review, and that was achieved by cutting the process down as much as possible. If the government want a review conducted in time for 2022 they need to get that legislation going soon so the Boundary Commissions can scrap their current review and start again on a new one next year.
  • If the review happens it will still favour the Tories a bit, regardless of tweaks to the rules. The current constituency boundaries are based on the electorate in 2001, so updating it for sixteen years of demographic change is still going to move things about quite a lot. Taking the electorates from the 2017 general election, by my reckoning a boundary review on 650 seats would still produce 7 extra seats for the South East, 3 extra seats for the South West and 3 in the East (presumably mostly Tory), and seats being lost in the North East, North West, Scotland and especially Wales.

Meanwhile there are two voting intention polls to update on:

YouGov for the Times had voting intentions of CON 41%(nc), LAB 42%(nc), LDEM 6%(-2), UKIP 4%(+1). Fieldwork was Wednesday and Thursday last week and changes are from a week before. Full tables are here. YouGov also released some interesting European polling on Brexit, asking other EU countries how they’d react if Britain did an about face and decided that we did, after all, want to remain in the European Union. This would be welcomed in Germany – 49% of Germans would rather we stayed, 25% that we left and the most common emotional reactions to Britain staying after all would be “Relieved” (23%) and “Pleased” (22%). Contrast this with France – 32% of French respondents would prefer that Britain stays, but 38% would rather we go. The most common French reaction to us changing our minds would be “Indifference” (23%) (tabs for the EU polling are here.)

Meanwhile Survation in the Mail on Sunday had an online poll in the Mail on Sunday with topline figures of CON 38%(nc), LAB 43%(+2), LDEM 7%(-1), UKIP 4%(-2). Fieldwork was Thursday and Friday last week, and changes are from Survation’s last online poll in July. For the record, there is a very minor method change in the Survation poll – UKIP are no longer prompted in the main question. Full tables are here.

628 Responses to “Boundary review and polling update”

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    @”I clearly did not propose that high level education and being older/retired were mutually exclusive.”

    It wasn’t clear to me-otherwise I wouldn’t have responded as I did.

    Glad to see you didn’t mean what your words implied.

  2. Student debt is a red herring. The one thing the Conservatives need to do to win back the youth vote is build affordable housing.

  3. AL URQA

    Yes, that was the sentence. Thanks

    (On mobile, so mainly reading, and not risking typing).

  4. @ TOBY EBERT (SOMERJOHN) – I agree in the implications of your point (although like COLIN the undertone of ageism that exists in the Brexit debate is concerning). Much depends on what the electorate perceive as “anti-EU”.

    Assuming the next GE is after Brexit has been fully negotiated and we’re either into a pre-agreed transition/implementation phase (late 2018 to say 2021) or have made it to 2022 then my guess/hope on EU stance would be (this far in advance, in descending order of pro-EU stance):

    LD – most pro-EU for sure. Continue with the 2nd ref which is morphing with time and would by that point be a rejoin referendum.
    LAB – Corbyn still in place = avoid the whole issue. Blairites back in charge = pro-EU but “time not right to hold a new referendum”
    CON – have to stick to whatever they agreed but still push the deep and special relationship Europe stance. Avoid the issue as best they can, certainly no support for another referendum.
    UKIP – life after death? Could say CON have fudged the issue and push for a more serious anti-EU stance.

    Obviously much depends on the deal but taking polling as a guide the VIs could be something like:

    LD: capture most of the hardcore Remain vote (say 20%, +12%)
    LAB: lose some to LD (say 30%, -12%)
    CON: stay around where they are (40%, unchgd)
    UKIP: stay around where they are (4%)

    Tactical voting overlay might assist LAB (I’m assuming ABC vote is still a factor) and making no huge assumptions on domestic changes to manifestos, leaders, Scotland, etc all of which could easily be 20-30 seat changes between the parties.

    My model is a little different to Electoral Calculus but given the errors involved anyway the outcome is roughly the same. CON majority of 30-40 seats.

    The Blairites therefore know the time to win a GE is soon (where as Unite know they’d be better off to wait until after Mar’19). The Blairities believe they have locked out Corbyn’s far-left agenda via EEA until at least 2023 but need his far-left support base to actually win a GE.

  5. Trevor Warne

    I’ve already explained my Brexit position….Brexit is irrelevant to my life or the life of the people I care about, as long as we have a Tory govt we are screwed. Although everyone regards Brexit as the most pressing issue, it’s way down on my list. Had a discussion at the local labour meeting, my view was not popular but the general mood was that the leadership are playing the Brexit issue well, there were two awkward members that agitated for a more pro active anti Brexit position but that position was even less popular than mine. No brexiters at that meeting but they might have been reluctant to out themselves.

  6. I rather like that people (even elected members can change their party support.

    This case, however, seems a tad unusual.

    For a councillor actually to be a Tory member and a Labour councillor simultaneously is odd, but for Lab to have him as group chairman is decidedly so!

    I don’t think that even the SLab councillors in Aberdeen or Stirling have gone quite so far!

  7. Oldnat

    Maybe he wanted to vote in the leadership election?

  8. CR

    In the upcoming Scottish one, £12 will buy that!

    For that investment, one can choose between a CND member, who supports UK Trident policy, or a shareholder in a family company that doesn’t pay the Real Living Wage, but wants others to do that. :-)

  9. @Oldnat

    I always think a good rule of thumb to check that personal prejudices are not distorting logic is to see how the directly opposite position sounds.

    Regardless of sovereignty issues, the whole island could be treated as if it was in the UK for single market / customs union purposes.

    That such an option would be unacceptable to the Irish Nationalists in either island means that the EU has an “Irish Problem”.

    Reasonable? Hardly, but in a that case how can the contrary position be?

  10. Re Corbyn and Brexit policy.

    FWIW here is my take.

    First, Corbyn may have been a soft remainer 7/10 who was not devastated by the out vote but in recent years has been an ‘on balance remainer’

    The vast majority of Corbyn’s supporters and momentum types are pro-EU and he and those around him know that; So a Soft Brexit position is real both politick and democratic.

    Starmer is (dare I say it) un and in essence he decides the policy with Corbyn and the rest in effect only having a veto.

  11. Starmer is unsackable oops.

  12. Oldnat

    I’m not impressed with either of the potential SLAB leaders, really glad I don’t have a vote in that one. As I’ve mentioned previously I’d quite like to see Mhairi Black as SLAB leader but unfortunately the SNP won’t do a transfer deal

  13. PeterW

    “I always think a good rule of thumb to check that personal prejudices are not distorting logic is to see how the directly opposite position sounds.”

    Fair enough. I’ll look forward to your proposing that directly opposed position – since your first try was seriously deficient in all kinds of ways.

  14. Jim jam

    I agree that Keir stammer is unsackable, he very good at his job. But I don’t see him as a leader, I would trust him as a competent manager, he’s very serious and an obvious grafter. But lacks the passion and imagination needed to be leader.

  15. CR

    Good players are seldom likely to want to transfer from the Premiership to a League 1 team – even if that team had any money (which SLab FC don’t).

    They really don’t want to play alongside others whose grasp of the principles and tactics of the beautiful game is so lamentably poor.

    Of course, if SLab’s owners (UKLab PLC) actually wanted to win, they might allow her to play in her preferred position – striker for independence.

  16. Oldnat

    If UKlab were a PLC they would probably consider closing down it’s loss making Scottish division unless they had a realistic hope of a quick turnaround

  17. If I was standing for SLAB leader I’d advocate a neutrality stance on independence and a ban on working with the Tories, unless absolutely necessary and make lots mention of a willingness to work with the SNP as friends and partners. But I don’t think such a position would be popular anywhere in Scotland, another reason that it’s good that I don’t have a vote in the matter

  18. Jim Jam

    Has Labour changed policy? You talk of a Labour soft Brexit. I thought Starmer was talking of a transitional period to be followed by a “new single market” arrangement or a “bespoke” arrangement. That is what he said and it is as fanciful as the Con’s position. For the EU has repeatedly made it clear that will not be on offer. If the UK leaves the Single Market it leaves the Custom Union.

    The Labour party manifesto says the party wants to retain the benefits of the single market and the custom union. In reality this is not possible. It is not on offer now and will not be, in my opinion. Also, there are some in the Conservative party who would gladly accept a transition to EFTA / EEA. If that happens there is nothing different between the two major parties on Brexit.

  19. @OLDNAT

    How are they not directly opposed?

    The problem to be solved is that having two customs zones, the UK and the EU, would by default create a customs border on the island of Ireland.

    Your solution is to put the whole of Ireland into customs union with the EU. How is putting the whole of Ireland into customs union with the UK not achieving exactly the same effect by the exactly opposed route?

    If one solution is unacceptable, why is the other one not? And how can either be described as being offered “Regardless of sovereignty issues”? How much bigger a sovereignty issue is there than the divorcing of the setting of a taxation policy from the polity subject to that taxation policy?

    I would submit that the only basis for difference is an underpinning belief that one of the national identities present on the island of Ireland and prejudiced by one of those models has legitimate concerns and the other does not. And seeking to judge the legitimacy of a national identity is a dangerous road indeed to travel.

    If you can point out any more objective difference please do.

  20. CR

    “But I don’t think such a position would be popular anywhere in Scotland,”

    On the contrary, it would probably be very popular – except among SLab members and SCon/SLD voters.

    A large part of the centre-left [1] vote in Scotland finds it pretty hard to distinguish between what they think of as the core positions of SNP and SLab – except on the constitutional question.

    That’s the same question on relationships with England and Europe that have been a dividing line in Scottish politics since the 12th century at least! Some factors (like Russia’s desire for a warm-water port) are constants in polities, regardless of anything but geography.

    [1] Of course, “centre-left” has no precise definition, and varies between polities. It always confuses me when folk in England talk about Corbyn as being “hard left”. Within its areas of competence, the SNP has already put into practice much of Corbyn’s agenda foe England.


    Surely the only relevant fact is that HMG wants to leave the EU whilst neither the RoI or the six counties do.

    In the 70s my Cheshire colleagues used to describe such situations as everyone being out of step but our John Willy, with HMG playing the part of the latter.

  22. I really don’t understand opposition to our continued membership of the EU customs union.

    From a Brexiter’s perspective, it puts us in the same position as Turkey, which is indubitably not in the EU.

    The chief objection seems to be that we won’t be able to do our own trade deals. But since the current proposal appears to be to cut and paste (or photocopy) existing EU trade deals, how much difference will that make?

    And looking ahead, the EU with its 500m-people market is likely to be able to cut better trade deals than the UK with its 65m, so what’s not to like about riding on their coat tails?

    If staying in the CU solves the NI border problem, then I reckon the government should swallow their pride and do the decent thing for Ireland.

  23. Peter W

    They’re not directly opposed because you weren’t addressing the point of my comment – which was that the British idea that there is an “Irish problem” pales into insignificance with the reality that for Ireland there is a huge “British problem” because the UK creates it!

    The EU’s “problem” is entirely different (and why you introduced it is far from clear) but it is neither an “Irish” nor a “British” problem, but a “UK problem”, and how it deals with that rather depends on how the UK Government considers (or fails to) how an equitable solution might work.

    I accept that the small majority voters in E&W who voted for Brexit did so in a spirit of total ignorance and unconcern about how that would affect even their fellow citizens in the NI enclave.

    Presumably a government that was actually “UK” as opposed to E&W plus DUP might have approached things differently, but we are where we are.

    As someone pointed out the “UK Government is between the devil and the DUP”.

  24. As misunderstandings arise so easily, I should perhaps have written, instead of “do the decent thing for Ireland”, “do the right thing for the people of the island of Ireland, north and south of the border.”

  25. @somerjohn

    Indeed and, as apparently trading on WTO terms is according to our Brexit friends no problem, there can’t be any significant problem with the extra time which new EU trade deals might take.

  26. somerjohn: From a Brexiter’s perspective, it puts us in the same position as Turkey, which is indubitably not in the EU.

    No no no, Turkey will soon be in the EU and if there was ever any doubt, Boris Johnson invited them after the Referendum. They will be in before Brexit is sorted, quite likely.

  27. @Monochrome October

    Yup, one out, one in will do the trick. And why stop there? I reckon the Brussels fiends have designs on swallowing Russia once Trump’s arranged for Putin to retire to Mar-a-Lago with a $1bn gratuity.

    Europe, from the Atlantic to the Pacific!

  28. @ CAMBRIDGERACHEL – thank you and apologies for asking you to repeat your view.

    I might have it completely wrong and the Corbynites and Blairites can live together happily ever after – hence my questions on this forum and search for polls that indicate LAB VI are united with regards to Brexit. You indicate that Brexit is pushed under the rug at your local CLP meetings but must surely recognise LAB VI has a large hard core Remain faction who are salivating at the prospect of delaying or even stopping+reversing Brexit.

    Cambridge is not a CON target seat but I wonder how the CLP’s in LAB heartlands will feel about the change in policy if a snap GE occurs? How will the next GE campaign go when RUDYARD, etc. have to knock on doors in the Midlands/North/Wales and explain that LAB succeeded in frustrating Brexit to the point of having forced an early GE and now have a policy that is tantamount to keeping UK in the EU by stealth with some fantasy assumption that the EU will cave in to changes on free movement? With DUP having extracted so much money from CON and SLAB and SNP having basically the same domestic policies what message has the DUP C+S deal sent to Scottish voters about electing king makers to represent them in Westminster?

  29. Monochrome October

    From wiki

    Turkish accession talks came to a halt as a result of the 2016–17 Turkish purges. On 24 November 2016 the European Parliament voted to suspend accession negotiations with Turkey over human rights and rule of law concerns,[8] though this decision was not binding.[9] On 13 December, the Council of the European Union (comprising the ministers of the member states) resolved that it would open no new areas in Turkey’s membership talks in the “prevailing circumstances”,[10] as Turkey’s path toward autocratic rule made progress on EU accession impossible.[11] As of 2017, and especially following the passage of the constitutional referendum, Turkish accession talks have effectively stopped.[12][13]

    And now their greatest advocate for EU membership is leaving the EU. I very much doubt that we will see Turkish membership within my lifetime.

  30. Trevor Warne

    I’ve moved to Northamptonshire, I should really change my name I suppose. I’m now living in a Brexiter area and folk at the meeting were very aware of this. While they agreed that a policy from labour was essential there was little enthusiasm for selling a hard remain message on the doorstep

  31. @ CAMBRIDGERACHEL – Northampton is certainly Brexitville – CON even gained two seat in E.Midlands – there only two English gains!

    I really look forward to a clean fight in a 2019 GE with Brexit settled. If CON mess Brexit up then they own it 100% start to finish and deserve the baggage (or booty) that comes with it. Mansfield and North East Derby certainly two seats in your new region that LAB would be contesting hard to regain. None of those pesky Remain or LD voters to worry about in those seats and I hope we both agree that we never want to see UKIP make a come back.

    Have a great evening and thank you for your replies.

  32. Sorry their, not there in the above. Too much screen time today! ‘night all

  33. Somerjohn

    “Europe, from the Atlantic to the Pacific!”

    What limited vision you have!

    Surely England from Greenwich to Greenwich would be the real Manifest Destiny?

    Mind you, if it’s just a “horizontal Chile” there might be a few problems. :-)

  34. Sam,

    No the LP position has not changed but has developed.

    Always was that the UK should leave the current single market as that single market was/is the EU’s single market.

    As I have posted a few 3-4 times it has been clear since the GE (2-3 days after) that Labour is appealing subtly to major EU Players (Germany and France) to try to change the single market so it is a different one than the current one that the UK must leave in order to honour the referendum result.

    At such point a bespoke deal for the UK to remain part of the ‘amended’ single market or have unhindered access to it would comply with the referendum result.

    The call for a long transitional agreement (interim arrangement would be more accurate) whereby things more or less stay as they are is to give more time. More time for the EU big beats to take control of the commission and execute some changes to free movement and for public opinion in the UK to shift in the UK, through a combination of demographics and second thoughts.

    No guarantee of that shift in public opinion of course especially as a meaningful %age of 2016 ref remain voters don’t wont a second vote at this time as they think decision taken we lost move on.

    Maybe that a manifesto commitment to seek to stay in a reformed single market followed by a win would be all that was needed.

  35. Jim Jam

    Anything is possible in politics – but I’m unclear as to any signals from the EU that they would wish to amend the 4 freedoms in order to provide the semi-detached UK with yet another opt out.

    Unless UKLab have some kind of indicator from the EU that such might be possible, then such a “policy” is as pointless as SLab advocating UK federalism or devo-max when UKLab doesn’t give a monkey’s about it.

  36. CR: I very much doubt that we will see Turkish membership within my lifetime.

    Ah, that’s all right then.

    And there was me thinking Monochrome October was being droll.

  37. ON – you may be right but I am trying to help those posters who don’t understand the LP policy and the desire not to rule things out (other than no deal).

    Seems to include a few LD supporters who can’t understand why remainers don’t back them when it could be argued that in England and most of Wales remainers best hope of something they can accept is Labour.

  38. Somerjohn @ CR

    Of course, that does all depend on the length of CR’s lifetime. :-) For both her sake and that of the EU, I hope that is a very long time.

    The EU has quite enough of a problem dealing with the political instability of one of its more western members, without incorporating more geographic instability on the east!

  39. Oldnat: Mind you, if it’s just a “horizontal Chile” there might be a few problems.

    Patrolling the borders would make NI/RoI look a doddle. By my reckoning, something like 40,000 miles? And our “Greenwich to shining Greenwich” nation would pass through some interesting places, like Sakhalin (I was actually hoping for N Korea, but Sakhalin will do):

  40. Jim Jam

    “but I am trying to help those posters who don’t understand the LP policy and the desire not to rule things out (other than no deal).”

    Understood – but for those of us who see SLab in operation, it seems a very old trick of trying to get votes by holding the door open for a strategy that has zero indicator of success.

    Sometimes (only sometimes, mind you) an honest approach may be better.

  41. Somerjohn


    Thanks. I hadn’t bothered to check out my suggestion in any reality context.

    That puts me in the proud company of Brexiteer campaigners, I suppose.

  42. Whether it is honest or not only time will tell.

    Zero indicator is your view and may be right but 5 years is a long time.

  43. Would be funny if Tony Blair and other non Government figures managed to gain some significant compromises from the EU, as well as EU country leaders.

    They have no official role in having discussions with the EU and probably should not be doing so. But if they have a goal of the UK staying in the EU singie market/customs union, they are entitled as private citizens with influence to have discussions with EU officials and other countries leaders.

    Perhaps the EU then ignores David Davis and his negotiating team, going directly to UK Politicians with a deal they are willing to offer. This would put the cat amongst the pigeons and whilst it may be a wrong thing to do, it might be an effective tactic. The UK tried to influence other countries leaders, but they just referred it back to the EU negotiating team. But the fragile nature of current UK Politics after the election, means that UK Parliament can be more powerful in taking decisions, against the Government position.

  44. @R Huckle “Would be funny if Tony Blair and other non Government figures managed to gain some significant compromises from the EU, as well as EU country leaders.”

    Every time Anthony Charles Lynton Blair climbs out of his crypt to try and overturn the Referendum or call for a new centre ground party he achieves two things. 1) He creates further division within the Labour Party 2) He reaffirms those that voted out that they must have done the right thing!

  45. Jim Jam

    Is this Labour policy secret? Are all Labour members aware of such a policy? Would it not be simpler to commit Labour to staying in the Single Market or re-joining the EU? How likely is it that the EU will think it worthwhile to change its treaty yet again to help out the old UK which, for parties internal political reasons, caused this mess?

  46. Oldnat

    I am a bit on my last legs but I ain’t a granny yet

  47. OLDNAT
    “, if SLab’s owners (UKLab PLC) actually wanted to win, they might allow her to play in her preferred position – striker for independence.”
    I have always thought that its natrual position on the pitch was striker for socialism. But I agree with your 7.58 post, and with its possible implication that it is to the advantage of UK LP to let the (SNP) tartan tale wag the UK socialist dog – with a sharp “down Jock” from time to time on purely empirical matters such as Trident.

  48. Sam,

    Let me try again.

    The current single market s the EUs single market so the UK cannot stay in it and respect the referendum result.

    However, Labour would like access the single market and customs union and are prepared to accept free movement short of what full membership requires for current membership.

    This may take the form of a tweak to free movement which would allow a future Government to say that as the single market we would be in is different from the one at the time of the Referendum to result is still being honoured. (perhaps unlikely but who knows)

    Pretty simple really and no secret; why close doors and narrow down options when if the 3 interim arrangement is adopted there can be over 3 years of developments from now.

    The current policy also allows Labour should UK public opinion move to advocate a second ref at some point but no one will say that of course as that is way too early.

  49. @JIM JAM

    I think what Labour and Tories would need to stay in the EU is a treaty change or a policy change however people whom believe there is too much immigration will not buy that.

    The problem that we have at the moment is immigration has been blamed for low wages, lack of housing, and indeed all of the ills that beset the UK.

    Whilst it is difficult for even the home office to prove any of this. It has become a common belief amongst enough of the population that it means that the debate on immigration goes as follows:

    ‘We need zero immigration because as a country we are a) overcrowded with people, b) the people coming here are low skilled and take housing from low skilled workers in the UK, c) take all the resources. If there was less immigration then at least British people would have a chance.’

    It is a strong pull argument because it meets with the simple view of market forces, it means that there is no need to go back to a policy that did not work (socialism or unionisation) and it just means that the markets are out of balance and it just need to be rebalanced.

    The current working class are not in unions, they work for contract agencies and sent to work or they are independent contractors. Look at any building site no one is employed by the housing companies. It is normally just a site manager and and a few admin guys. So basically the level of work is inherently insecure it is part of our flexible labour market. it has advantages when we had lots of credit such that we can overpay people but now we cannot.

    My view is that we will chose every option but the rational one because the rational one is not to have the low skilled jobs as a basis but for many businesses low skilled jobs make more money than higher skilled, higer capital intensive jobs.

    it is why soft fruit is grown over cereals. With cereals you need a tractor to plough to seed and to harvest, 100K of kit but the yield is very poor, farmers would go bust but they can make so much more selling hand intensive picked fruit and that is why they do it.

    We see the same thing in many other sectors, we have created a situation whereby this is a problem a CIPD report stated that 20% of all jobs required the education level of a 10 year old. Only spain has a higher percentage, Germany and Sweden sit at 5%.

    The immigration problem is because we do not invest in higher skilled jobs and we do not have the entrepreneurs and the investors to do so

    We are therefore asking the EU to change the labour system to suit our economy when they firstly would meet with fierce resistance from the Eastern European middle class but more importantly would meet with even more from an rural class that do migrate for work or are receive remittances from people whom migrate.

    Politically I do not see FoM changing, In terms of policy or raw numbers it is not like the people come here to scrounge on benefits they come to work. The Home Office reports states that they do not hinder pay and where immigrant go to in the main is not where immigration is seen as a negative.

    Are the Labour party hoping for a change a decisive change of thinking. I believe that is their aim. Will the EU give them any concessions, I am not sure how they can. UK will have to change it laws to make things like social security contributory which it currently is not

    Talking to people on the door step I met a lot of people whom had the bought into the argument that immigration reduction would lead to changes for the better for the low skilled because if there is less pole and romanians then they have to pay cleaners more money.

    Most studies show that for low skilled workers that is not the case, what tends to happen is a movement to either curtailing the number of low skilled workers or basically abandoning the market.

    The two examples I ahve sseen in reports was macDonalds and their 24hr strategy, it relies on low pay to keep many McDonald open 24hr, if the pay goes up then they close them at midnight and open them at 6am and you lose a shift.

    The Labour part’s problem is essentially non unionised and non unionisable labour being the bulk of the voters they need to turn. Their success in unionisation of the gig economy has been in conurbations but these people would have voted for them anyway.
    You have less of Uber and Deliveroo out in the smaller towns and the rural areas.

    I think their Labour plan is to delay leaving and hope that the people move to a view that the problem is not immigrants it is the shape of our economy. The advantage that labour has is that the people whom are preaching this will not be blairites, in the same way I cannot see May sell expansionist economic policy, I doubt she will say after 7 years of austerity we have been doing it all wrong. it would take someone completely different from the Tories to say that.

    This is why immigration is powerful in the UK. it gives both Blairites and Tories cover for policies that led us to this point. Indeed all three major parties are now tainted with this.

    This is why I believe that nothing that Labour will do will change the situation until people believe it is nothing to do with immigration by which time it will be too late and the E would have moved further away.

    The only thing stopping brexit is Tories biting the bullet and believing that it if the Uk loses economically that they will suffer at the polls. What I believe is that we are in a process of managed decline and it would take a big change to arrest it. The problem is as I said we will go for every option before we get one that works, brexit make it difficult to push any other option unfortunately.

    So why I understand JIM JAM approach to this I think it lacks the time and the policy discussion and consensus to move away from the the brexit position we are currently on. We have essentially cut off all avenues to reverse this. I say that because you will need consensus to reverse this and in simple terms there is no consensus

  50. OLDNAT

    “Thanks. I hadn’t bothered to check out my suggestion in any reality context.
    That puts me in the proud company of Brexiteer campaigners, I suppose.”

    Fascinating post, the UK voted to leave the EU, article 50 has been triggered, we are leaving the EU and there have already been three rounds of negotiations. Whats unreal about that. I would suggest its the Leavers who are being realistic about what’s happening.

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