Sunday, February 28, 2010

 

What Are the Odds on a March 25th Election?


OK, I know this is only a rumour, but it's been trailed here and there and is worth looking at, if only briefly. It suggests Brown will go for a snap election to wrongfoot the Tories on 25th March. Why would this be a good idea? It would:

1. Avoid the requirement for another budget before the election- a difficult exercise when you have nothing to give away and any new taxes will only lose votes.

2. Avoid the publication of economic output for the first quarter of this year. Financial pages have been full of gloom recently, suggesting these figures will indicate a fall in output, or that awful eventuality, the 'double dip' recession. Given Brown's prefered narrative of having 'weathered the storm' it would be a disatser if such figures emerged mid campaign

3. Conservative support is falling away at the moment. It's not altogether clear why, but from 44% in October 2009, their poll rating has fallen to 37%, a mere 5 points in front after a period when they enjoyed a 20 point lead.{Stop Press: latest poll says the lead is down to 2% which would be enough to keep Labour in power!] Going soon would capitalize on this good fortune and, even if Labour did not win, it might manage to become the largest party and deny Cameron his long expected victory.

Will it happen? The odds have to be against it. Rumours like this have come and gone in the past. Gordon is not decisive when it comes to elections- remember how he 'bottled' it in October 2007?- and nobody knows how much money Labour has to fight such a snap election. So odds against but, whilst it's just speculation, it does have some substance to it. I personally hope it won't happen as I've planned a visit to the House of Commons with my a students on that day and it would ruin my carefully prepared programme.


Comments:
Depends on the next Polls, and whether brown has not shit himself before. I can imagine yes we will, hold on no we wont, yes nop yes no YES NO NO NO
 
Hello, you may remember me from last summer when I posted a couple of responses. Since then I've been working hard to hold down a job, raise my kids and complete my OU Politics degree.

I don't want to gloat, however: round about June last year I left a rather long comment that predicted a Labour victory in a spring 2010 election. Your comments were very nice but a rather pompous man called Oakeshott was very rude. As a consequence I haven't bothered to comment much even though I read most days. So, to Mr Oakeshott - spin on that!

I spent a week in and around Parliament in January doing research for my dissertation. Some snaphots: Charles Clarke wandering around looking vague and lost, Austin Michell leaning wearily on the escalators up into Portcullis House, Charles Kennedy hanging around the lobby looking bored and dull, Keith Vaz unable to fathom the security barrier in off the Embankment - there was a real air of fin-de-siecle about the place: a hopeless generation waiting to be swept away. BTW - check out the paintings around the corridors of Port House - AWFUL!
 
Hi Linda
Yes, I do ecall your comments and Oakeshott can be a bit trying at times, I agree. I do hope you get a lots out of your OU degree. I used to teach summer school for them in 1970s. Gdet in touch if you think I can help in any way.
 
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