It’s less than 2 years to the next scheduled British election. The Tories will be seeking a 5th consecutive win, something last achieved in 1832. That’s not a typo but factual, namely almost 200 years ago. Consequently, history and the odds are hugely against them.
Much will depend on the new Prime Minister. The current polling favourite is Rishi Sunak, the former Chancellor. Despite the inevitable polling boost for a new leader, I don’t like the Tories chances with him. Personally, I’d love to have seen Priti Patel on the throne but she wouldn’t get selected and thus didn’t put her name forward. She’s a no-nonsense real tough cookie who I suspect has the 1975 Muldoon factor, namely she could pull Labour’s working class votes, particularly the men.
England is inherently a right wing nation. If you doubt that consider this. There would never have been a Labour government in Britain without the Welsh and Scots, mostly Labour sympathising voters.
Therein lies one possibility of the Conservative Party hanging on for a historic win, specifically the collapse of the Scottish Labour Party vote to the Scottish National Party, which is the current reality.
If Starmer tried to bribe the Scots by offering a fresh independence referendum he’d lose as many English voters as gained in Scotland. But a close election and in return for coalition backing by promising another Scots independence referendum, then anything is possible. However, that same option is available to the Conservative Party.
The irony would be another Scottish Independence referendum which failed; a likely outcome in my view and I say that as a resident there, and reasonably familiar with prevailing sentiments.
Democracies are always messy, their main saving grace as we know, being they’re better than the alternatives. But another plus factor, never to be overlooked is their huge entertainment value. We’re witnessing that now with the leadership vote underway by Conservative Party members. Currently it has Sunak and Penny Mordaunt in the lead but I have a strong feeling Sunak won’t make it. What’s really fascinating is the emergence of a new star, 42 year old Kemi Badenoch who’s attracting strong support from many right wing commentators. She’s of Nigerian ethnicity, has only been an MP for five years, is extra smart and is married to a British banker. I suspect she’s the only Tory leadership candidate who could buck the political pendulum and ensure another Tory term.
Imagine that; a black female British MP. She’d have enormous novelty appeal and would pull young voters for that reason alone, plus her philosophic consistency, sadly lacking in the others and specially Sunak, would ensure huge financial support.
All of this is a classic example of my comment above about the splendid entertainment value democracies provide.