Writing before all results have been reported and collated, it is nonetheless simple to discern the main outlines: the Conservatives have done well, Labour has done badly, the LibDems have done fairly badly (though well here and there) and UKIP has been effectively extinguished. As the experts have been at pains to explain, the local election results do not translate exactly into General Election results, but they do provide clear indications.
The Conservative Party and government under Theresa May is not, in fact, “popular”, but that makes no difference electorally, because it is not judged on its merits (or those of the quite similar 2010-2015 government) but as against failing Labour. The Conservatives are winning by default, not by reason of their own (non-existent) merit.
Anecdotal evidence is always suspect, but in the South of England it is clear that relatively few will vote Labour on 8 June. Labour will win no seats and may lose the few still held, even in parts of London (the Labour bastion in the South).
As for the rest of the country, the SNP and Conservatives will sweep the board, very likely, in Scotland; in Wales also, the Conservatives are likely to do well (in places), now that UKIP is no more.
The only part of England where the Conservatives will struggle will be the North East and even there they may do better than at any time since the franchise was expanded in the early 20th Century.
The Conservatives have an almost unassailable advantage in that they need only avoid doing something which terrifies the voters in some way. Labour provides all the reasons voters need to vote Conservative: support for more mass immigration and open borders for “refugees” (migrant-invaders); its leaders’ one-time support for the IRA etc; uncertain policy on EU Brexit; most of all, Labour’s perceived ineptitude (one need only use two words– Diane Abbott!
The UKIP collapse alone will give the Conservatives votes enough to take many Labour seats. It seems that about half the 2015 UKIP voters will not only not vote UKIP but will vote Conservative. UKIP came second in no less than 120 constituencies in 2015. That speaks for itself. Many of those seats were Labour, 44 in fact: http://www.politicsresources.net/area/uk/ge15/UKIP-second.htm
2015 UKIP voters switching to Conservative has a twofold effect: firstly, Cons taking Labour seats; secondly, preventing Labour or the LibDems being able to take many, possibly any, Conservative seats.
Likely number of seats: from 400 to 425
I have been tweeting and blogging that UKIP is washed-up for about 18 months now. Finally the msm has caught up with me. UKIP had two main policies which were popular: getting the UK out of the EU; reducing immigration. The Conservatives have taken over the first and pay lip service to the second. This leaves UKIP with nowhere to go. Add to that the clownish behaviour of its “leaders” (MEPs, mostly) and it is not hard to see why UKIP will struggle to avoid annihilation, even in Eastern England. Its Stoke Central by-election fail (see my earlier blog posts) was a warning: the disenchanted voters were not willing to get out of bed or leave their TVs long enough to vote UKIP.
UKIP’s weakness has always been its even distribution across England. Even on nearly a quarter of the vote in some seats and a national vote of 12%, nothing was won in 2015, whereas the Green Party, with a national vote of less than 4%, could capture one seat because it had enough votes in one place to win narrowly in a 4-way split. UKIP’s support is expected to decline to as little as 4% nationally soon.
Under a proportional system, UKIP would have obtained 80 MPs in 2015.
That leaves open the question: if half of UKIP voters are defecting to the Conservatives, what about the other half? Probably staying home, not voting, most of them.
Likely number of seats: 0
The LibDems call themselves “cockroaches” for their ability to survive. Many think them the least principled party in British politics. In 2010, the LibDems obtained roughly a quarter of the vote, but (like UKIP in 2015) were cheated by the FPTP voting system and ended up with 57 seats, when their vote share would under proportional voting have entitled them to 160 or so. As it was, the LibDems sold out on PR and other matters and suffered accordingly by being reduced to 8 MPs.
It is possible that the LibDems will be able to take seats from both Con and Lab, but their best chances will be in the South of England. Having said that, they may well also lose a few.
Likely number of seats: about 12
Labour is at last in that “existential crisis” which many (including me) have forecast for the past 18 months. The Jewish-Zionist plots against anti-Israel Corbyn have blown wide open Labour’s lack of relevance now that the proletariat has been replaced by the precariat. The Zionists have done such a good job of demonizing Corbyn (and so Labour) that many of Corbyn’s fiercest MP critics are likely to lose their seats!
Labour was struggling to present itself to the electorate as competent even before Diane Abbott started to come apart at the seams. The earlier mass resignations of more competent people left Corbyn surrounded by bad-joke Shadow Ministers: Diane Abbott as notional Home Secretary (to call that a joke is an understatement), Dawn Butler (both of the foregoing not only deadheads but expenses cheats!), Angela Rayner etc etc. Only the most unthinkingly loyal Labourites will be voting Labour under these conditions.
Labour’s leaders have consistently supported mass immigration (both past and future) and see nothing wrong in that. At the same time, the “Blairite” (Zionist) MPs have often also supported or not opposed Conservative cuts to social security (including the cruel and dishonest “assessment” of the disabled and sick, which Labour in fact introduced!); these policies and statements have alienated, perhaps forever, many traditional Labour voters.
Above all, perhaps, Labour is (surely correctly) seen as hopelessly divided, hopelessly inept, generally hopeless. It has no prospect of winning any seats at all and every prospect of taking a serious hit on 8 June.
Beyond the General Election, it is likely that Labour will decline into being a niche party for ethnic minorities and unionized public sector workers.
Likely number of seats: about 150
I do not deal with other parties here, but it is likely that the SNP will end up with 40-50 seats; the Northern Irish parties have seats; Plaid Cymru will probably have a couple, perhaps a few.
Conservative landslide by default, barring something very unusual happening in the next month. People voting against Labour, not for Conservative, but the immediate result being the same.
The 8 June election will mean “Conservative” government for probably 5 years, to 2022 That is the 33-year-cycle successor year to 1989, which saw the end of socialism across the world. 2022 will see another huge change, in Europe and beyond its shores. A social national party, even if it only starts operations in 2017 or 2018, might be able to seize the initiative in the UK and then seize power.
Further Thoughts (written 22 July 2018)
Looking back now, after nearly 15 months, it is clear that I got a few things wrong. In fact, that is more apparent than real. The analysis was written 5 weeks before the 2017 General Election. In the final week or two before the election itself, I understood that an uncertain mood had gripped the country; in particular, while the brittle Theresa May Conservative bubble burst as the voters quite suddenly lost confidence in her, Labour was not in a position to capitalize on that loss of confidence. That led to the equally uncertain result on Election Day.
My view of UKIP as in the analysis has been proven correct; the same is true of my 2017 opinion about the LibDems.
I still see Labour as not enthusing more than about a quarter of the voters (if that), but one must always bear in mind that, in the UK, people tend to vote against rather than for. The unfair FPTP voting system reinforces that tendency.
The Conservatives now (July 2018) look tired, divided, incompetent. Labour, having been behind in the polls for months, is now ahead, despite arguably being as divided etc. That is because people are anti-Conservative Party, not because they are pro-Labour Party. I see the result of any 2018 election as being a hung Parliament, with Labour as, probably, the largest party, but only by a small margin.
Events remind us of the truth of Harold Wilson’s dictum that “a week is a long time in British politics”.