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Election predictions: The sequel

ChrisV 14 2.3k 26 United Kingdom
12 Jun 2017 10:34AM
A sequel in more ways than one. We've seen how the last election played out and as the thread was started close to the outcome, most people who had a stab weren't terribly far off the mark. Nobody got it absolutely spot on, because it's so finely balanced even a couple of seats difference could have entirely changed the picture.

Certainly I have to hold my hands up - I didn't really consider a Tory government propped up by just enough of the DUP [the only party who might conceivably have allied themselves with this government]. to give them a barely working majority.

So the sequel is - how long before the next one?

How long do you think Mrs Mayhem will last. Will the government collapse before they have a chance to oust her? How many calculations are going on at present about going into another election with a different leader?

It's a total mess and limping on seems to be the least worst scenario at present for the Conservative Party. But how long can they sustain a program where any significant dissent at all will trigger collapse?

So two predictions - when does May go and when do we get on this merry go round of elections next?
12 Jun 2017 10:49AM

Quote:Nobody got it absolutely spot on, because it's so finely balanced even a couple of seats difference could have entirely changed the picture.

Is 'Hung Parliament' not spot on?
ChrisV 14 2.3k 26 United Kingdom
12 Jun 2017 11:27AM
Lots of people said hung parliament, [I cheated with two options: very slim Tory majority or hung; and in a sense it's a combination of the two]. I don't think anyone specifically foresaw a Tory minority propped up by the DUP - which was always the only party [given it was unlikely UKIP would have any MPs] that might support them.

Let's say you called the last one right - so what's your guess on the sequel?
12 Jun 2017 11:54AM
I think she will stagger on perhaps for 9 months as the Tories will not want to go back to the electorate in a hurry, nor do they want Boris Johnson as leader and their choices are pretty slim. My big proviso is Northern Ireland as Sinn Fein have called for an enquiry into Arlene Foster which is outstanding and was the cause of the dissolution of the N. Irish Assembly. This could be a very sticky wicket for the Tories to be batting on. And of course everything could be thrown in the air if she doesn't get the Queen's speech through Parliament this week.
Carabosse 18 41.6k 270 England
12 Jun 2017 12:05PM
I think Mrs M will remain as a figurehead PM if, and only if, she survives until this summer's recess of parliament.

She will then step down after the Brexit negotiations are concluded, probably in autumn 2018.

There will be a lot of pressure on the Tory/DUP "coalition" to call a general election based largely on the terms of the deal reached with the EU and a mandate for whoever replaces Theresa May.

But.......... she could be gone within days/weeks if the Tories themselves decide now is the time to drop her. Boris Johnson looked far too excited and animated when he said the party should get behind TM. I think he senses an opportunity! Wink
arhb 14 3.4k 68 United Kingdom
12 Jun 2017 12:19PM
I wouldn't mind Boris as PM for a short while - purely for entertainment value.

Meanwhile, Labour who gained a huge amount of traction over the last few weeks, are still gaining momentum, and I feel it's just a matter of time before they take centre stage.
IanYorke 8 30 United Kingdom
12 Jun 2017 1:26PM
I think all of the politicos have lost site of the big picture in the frenzy of their little party bubbles. If you take the party politics out of the equation, whoever is in charge has to deal with Brexit.
Looking at it from a business, rather than political viewpoint, Article 50 has been triggered and the UK must negotiate an exit deal. Both Tories, Labour and even Libs (sort of, depends on the day of the week) have excepted the Leave vote and the terms “Hard” Brexit and “Soft” Brexit are now the focus of discussion.
“Hard” Brexit means leaving the EU, and the Single Market, replacement of EU law making by the UK, and no longer allowing EU citizens free access to UK labour markets. The UK then has to forge a trade deal with the EU in order to access the single market or trade under WTO conditions with tariffs on goods into and out of UK.
So the “Hard” Brexit situation is clear.
The “Soft” Brexit situation is also very clear if the overriding goal is to secure single market access, which appears to be the position of Labour, Libs etc. In order to do that there are several models to follow, for example, Norway. In all of these you have to pay for market access and follow EU law and allow free movement. So you have no “influence” over laws, trading conditions etc or immigration. These types of models were ridiculed by both the Remain and Leave side in the referendum for obvious reasons.
So whether Conservatives or Labour are in Government they have, after the Election, a very weak negotiating position. A “Hard” Brexit is impossible, a “we will walk away” if we don’t get a good deal is also a laughable position and would carry no weight. Remember, this has nothing to do with politics as these are in effect business negotiations.
David Cameron tried to “get a deal” that would have spiked Leaves guns had he managed to obtain any significant concessions. His position of saying he would take anything offered, because he would not walk away is simply a ridiculous negotiating tactic as any business man (or person going in to negotiate a rise) understands. This is now the UK’s position whether it is Cons or Labour. You have to look at these matters not from petty party politics and point scoring but from a pragmatic business viewpoint.
EU has realised that actually UK leaving has done more to bring EU together than any other single factor. All they need is the money from UK (UK is second largest contributor to EU budget) and, for them no more UK influence within EU means everything is rosy for EU. UK needed to come together for the good of the country rather than fight the referendum result over and over again. Cons have lost, Labour has lost, UK has lost.
Given the above the UK will now suffer as it will have no influence in EU, even if Brexit was cancelled UK would have no influence because they rest of the EU will say the Leave campaign would start up once again because the UK Government has defied the democratic process, so no long term commitment. The UK would not be in control of its borders, laws, couldn’t make trade deals etc and so have no influence outside of EU. The worst of all worlds!
Had the UK not voted to Leave all would be different but we can’t turn back time. The EU pulled together after the vote whilst the UK tore itself apart because people could not accept the result of democracy. Having worked for 20 years in China I really appreciate democracy but if the people will not accept the democratic process chaos ensues. As my friends in China point out a similar referendum in China would not have caused any problems. The ballot paper would have simply said “Tick here if you want to remain part of EU” and that would have been the only question 
So we will have “Soft” Brexit which is what everybody has voted for. We just need to recognise that “Soft” Brexit is not “status qua” as many people assume. Finally remember I am trying to take the petty party politics out of assessing the situation. Brexit is business, pur and simple, as we are about to find out.
Carabosse 18 41.6k 270 England
12 Jun 2017 1:43PM
So far as I can discern a 'Hard Brexit' only means the UK walking away without a deal.

I doubt that has ever been a serious possibility. It would be too damaging for the EU.

There is a lot of nonsense talked about staying in the Single Market. That is only code for staying in the EU for all intents and purposes. We would have to accept free movement, jurisdiction of European courts, accepting directives from the EU Commission etc. That is not what the majority voted for nearly a year ago.

It is interesting that recent surveys suggest that about 70% of the electorate just want the government to get on and deliver Brexit. No more shilly-shallying! Smile

ChrisV 14 2.3k 26 United Kingdom
12 Jun 2017 2:33PM
I know there will be howls of protest from Brexiteers that I'm being patronising, but I honestly think the vast majority who voted [on both sides] had very little idea of what the full ramifications of exit would be - and actually the degree to which a total exit was feasible.

For years there's been a characterisation of the EU from the right wing press [which the mainstream media has largely gone along with] that the EU is fundamentally undemocratic and that we've had law imposed upon us that was entirely unnecessary.

This overlooks the fact that the institutions of the EU, apart from the Commission, are all directly elected, by all citizens of all member states.

A lot is made of the role of the Commission, but they're essentially supercharged civil servants, bureaucrats. They are in charge of the day to day running of the apparatus of the union whose primary business is business - that its trade. Unlike the Civil Service they have responsibility for framing laws [which are on the whole trade regulations and other practical measures for business integration]. While people fling their hands up in horror over this it's important to consider that they have no ultimate legislative authority - absolutely everything they do has to be ratified by the Council [consisting of heads of state as elected by their own electorates] and the EU parliament [which we all vote for in EU elections]. While the Commission is the executive which enacts laws, it is directly accountable to the other bodies. Unlike those bodies it is divorced from an electorate or the party factions of the other chambers - it has to be in order to make it politically neutral [or at least some semblance of that], in order not to find itself in perpetual conflict with the shifty party politics of member states.

Whatever Brexit is coming down the line, it will be preceded by the grand reform bill that will take all the regulation and law passed by the EU into our own domestic law. So from the very beginning we will have all the regulation the last 40 odd years of the EU have given us. A lot of the bluster and rhetoric ignores this, along with the fact that in order to trade tariff free we're going to have to continue to comply with the vast bulk of EU regulation - and not just that which has already been framed. Continued membership of the customs union is also pretty vital to our business interests, because without it not only could we not have an open border in Ireland, goods going back and forth in the manufacturing process would also be subject to a debilitating layer of red tape that would effectively cripple a lot of businesses.

Unfortunately the Tory Party is and always was incredibly factionalised and deeply polarised in its positions on all this and I think it's doubtful there's any way of reaching settlelemnt [which is why May and co wanted a huge buffer against hose factions].

The position they are now in offers a stark situation - compromise or fall apart, go to the polls with a leader who now has absolutely no credibility and get wiped out. Narrow self-interest might win the day for a short time, but I honestly can't see it will prevail for long enough to see out a year, let alone a five year term. David Davis claimed this on the news this morning [they needed five years for negotiations], but I think he's not fool enough to think that a realistic possibility.

While the Tories buy time in order to regroup, they have to maintain an illusion they can carry on. It won't last.
seahawk 14 1.4k United Kingdom
12 Jun 2017 2:34PM
Labour have stated today that they would also leave the single market - there is no point leaving the EU if we try and remain within the single market as the price is too high. Let's also remember that the EU negotiators (Barnier et al) are under pressure because when the UK leaves our budget contributions (which are the second-largest after Germany, I believe) leave with us. Their recent statements and behaviour seem to indicate that this is a group of rather scared people because if we leave with an acceptable deal other countries may consider doing the same.
The Euro is an inherently unstable creation; many intelligent European politicians understand this now and recognise the need for it to be reformed otherwise the Eurozone remains a trading group that merely allows Germany to run an increasing trade surplus at the expense of other countries, particularly in the Mediterranean. However, Frau Merkel and others have too much political capital invested in propping up the Euro, so there is an impasse at present.
To return to the original question - Mrs May will probably survive until the Autumn so that Brexit negotiations can begin and then someone like Boris will take over.
Don't underestimate Boris! He's not as daft as he appears.
seahawk 14 1.4k United Kingdom
12 Jun 2017 2:40PM
To ChrisV - sorry but I must take issue with your last post. I knew exactly what I was voting for in June last year, a complete departure from the EU. I also knew the implications. I was in favour of the EEC as it was in the 1970's but it has morphed into a monster which is inherently unstable.
Carabosse 18 41.6k 270 England
12 Jun 2017 2:44PM

Quote:I know there will be howls of protest from Brexiteers that I'm being patronising, but I honestly think the vast majority who voted [on both sides] had very little idea of what the full ramifications of exit would be

I think it is fairly widely agreed that the main reason for voting to leave the EU was to end uncontrolled immigration from it. Abstruse arguments about sovereignty, jurisprudence and so forth were not a topic of conversation in most circles.

If leaving the Single Market is how we achieve stopping uncontrolled immigration, then that is what we have to do. It is a condition imposed by the EU not the UK.

In the highly unlikely event of the EU agreeing to end free movement but letting us stay in the single market, the other issues would remain, but might be -
just possibly - grudgingly accepted by Leavers.

brian1208 18 11.8k 12 United Kingdom
12 Jun 2017 2:47PM
seeing how they are delaying the Queen's Speech I'm hoping she and the conservatives will see sense, step back and invite Jeremy to present his own version and attempt to make good his claim that he won

Then I could watch him explain how the Tories stopped him from providing free university tuition, endless money to the NHS etc

Won't happen unfortunately so I'm betting on a lost vote of no confidence and another election within 3 months

In my view the whole things is a total shambles and the worst possible outcome for the UK and the EU
brian1208 18 11.8k 12 United Kingdom
12 Jun 2017 2:52PM

Quote:To ChrisV - sorry but I must take issue with your last post. I knew exactly what I was voting for in June last year, a complete departure from the EU. I also knew the implications. I was in favour of the EEC as it was in the 1970's but it has morphed into a monster which is inherently unstable.

ditto and I went further and sought the opinion of both my boys, one a Director for an international company the other a principal consultant of a UK environmental company

Both a fully aware of what the EU stands for and how it works, one was strongly Pro Remain, the other Pro Leave

Make of that what you will
thewilliam2 4 1.6k United Kingdom
12 Jun 2017 3:45PM
My take on Brexit is this: if I were about to lose my single biggest client who provided some 60% of my turnover and hadn't identified an obvious replacement, I'd be messing myself!

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