Friday, 9 June 2017
Election Reality Check
Here's a short reality check for Chauncey fans: You lost. Yes you had a very good result, you got a share of the vote that few of us thought possible and you managed to galvanise a part of the electorate that rarely votes, albeit by offering them shameless and pointless bribes that are economically ruinous and entirely unnecessary because the present system is working just fine.
Despite this however Labour lost the election. In a parliamentary system parties need enough seats to form a government and vote through their legislation. Labour failed. Labour has now failed to win a majority in three successive elections. For all of the talk of Chauncey and the other parties today, there is no coalition possible to form a government or to defeat the Tories. Labour had a very very good night. They put on an increase in share unseen since 1945. But it still wasn't enough to actually win. Because the Tories got an even bigger vote share and indeed increased their vote share on 2015. A peculiarity of this election post the Brexit vote was that solid Tory, wealthy areas of London like Kensington voted for a Marxist run Labour Party. That is a peculiarity that will not last.
The Tories had a disastrous night last night. But they still emerged as the largest party within a whisker of the magic figure that would have given them a majority. It is comparatively simple for them to manufacture an arrangement that will enable them to govern. That is how our system works.
In some ways it would almost be worth the Tories standing aside and letting Labour into power in present circumstances. Let's face it, it could still happen if everything goes wrong. But perhaps Labour in power and thus able to screw things up for a while would be instructive to the half wits who voted for them.
I suspect however that we have reached peak loony. Labour managed a 40% share of the vote. But the Tories managed a 44% share of the vote. The country divided along those lines. The Tory vote came out in force and saved us from a Chauncey administration. For all of his bluster he has no right to form that administration. Theresa May has every right if she can command a majority in the House of Commons, even if it will be anything but strong and stable.
I remain of the opinion that she will have to go sooner or later. She arrived back at Downing Street talking of five years. No chance. The Tories must not let her lead them into another election. She has demonstrated quite clearly that she is not up to it. She and her team owned this election campaign and they failed disastrously. They failed to confront the lies and voodoo economics of the Labour campaign and failed to campaign at all in many ways. A more able operator would have confronted Labour and hit back hard. She didn't even come close. Her aloofness and awkwardness lost this election along with some spectacular own goals in policy terms.
To be fair she was also a little unlucky. Suddenly suffering three terrorist attacks in quick succession created doubts in peoples' minds, even if those doubts were largely unfair. More police on the streets would not have stopped the attacks.
It is probably right for now for her to stay in position. But this must be temporary. Theresa May must go in the coming weeks or months.