Seat estimates show clearly why Labour right to ignore “people’s vote” clamour

As the SKWAWKBOX published last night, the latest poll by Survation, the only polling company to correctly predict the 2017 general election result, gives Labour a three-point lead over the Tories – and shows that the party would lose vote share if it were to lead calls for a new referendum.

A great piece of work this morning by the excellent Matt Thomas has put those results into an easily-comprehensible form by showing how the parliamentary seats would work out in a general election in scenarios where Labour does not call for a so-called “people’s vote” and if it did.

The results are clear:

If Labour’s leadership calls for another referendum, the only beneficiaries are the Tories – and those clamouring loudly for Labour to do so would have a continuing hung parliament and a default hard Brexit, while our vulnerable would continue to suffer hideously under Tory policies.

By contrast, Labour’s current strategy sees Labour the largest party and in a position to form a strong coalition government – and that’s without the expected Labour surge under the fairer media handling that prevails during a general election campaign.

SKWAWKBOX comment:

These simple numbers demolish the loud centrist claims – treated as fact by many in the media – that Labour is ignoring the people by refusing to bow to centrist pressure to come out for a new referendum now. Now now now!

So of course, the same media and centrists are entirely ignoring the polling or even, in the odd brave case, positively stating the poll should be ignored.

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  1. I can’t see how anyone can extrapolate the marginal differences shown above into credible estimate either way. It is little more than fantasy.

    1. Of course you can’t Steve. It’s a total nonsense with error margins getting into the stratosphere.

      But, of course the reason for keeping open the second referendum idea is dependent on a a lot more contingencies than mickey-mouse projections like this.

      What seems to be misunderstood is that those of us who firmly back ‘Remain’ do so in large part because we see a weak and isolated UK as being in no position to implement a radical programme under Labour – even if victory was secured.

      As said elsewhere, the only clear fact is the divided nature of the country after a right-wing wet dream was given substance by Cameron.

      Everything else is extrapolation from that non-result that was the referendum.

      One question that can’t be clearly answered, but is tantalizingly relevant, is ‘What would the situation have been if Labour had been realistic about the nonsense of Brexit when analysed – instead of half-thinking that a left agenda could be superimposed on a right-wing wet dream?

    2. The point is that when you have “this is the position on scenario a” v “this is the position on scenario b”, the relative positions of the two scenarios are clear. This is so regardless of the margin of error of the absolute numbers, because you are dealing with the same sample, and therefore an identical error.

      So even if we can’t say, Labour would poll x and win y number of seats if they did A, we can say with certainty that doing B would lead to a smaller vote share and fewer seats than doing A.

      1. Wow. All on the basis of literally 1 or 2 percentage points in a Daily Mail poll.

      2. ” the relative positions of the two scenarios are clear”

        Errrr….. No. It doesn’t work like that. That’s not politics. It’s statistics.

  2. The big reveal is just how closely tied the EU vote and ‘class’ are. More than the mainstream media acknowledges. The likes of the Guardian twist it around but they know that many working class people voted to leave the neoliberal EU because they understood on a visceral level that the EU is intrinsically anti working class – and the political lever pullers know it.

    So the game is a second EU referendum, which they know will serve as a gigantic carving knife in the collective backs of the working class, which in turn will also permanently damage any trust the working class has in the Labour Party for the foreseeable future.

    Very clever. It would do more to damage the Labour Party than Tony Blair.

    It brings to mind a cartoon I saw in which two women are chatting in their kitchen. One says to the other:

    “We’re desperate for a second referendum. We sent our Romanian cleaners on the People’s Vote march”.

      1. A central question. As I’ve pointed out, it’s simply nonsense to use it as a romantic dog whistle with weak foundations in reality.

        The two main correlates of voting in the referendum were actually education and age.

        I don’t go along with simply labelling the older and the less educated as ‘working class’, which is the implication of tying ‘Leave’ to a mythic ‘working class’.

      2. Who on earth labels “the older” as “working class” ? Nobody. This is that fanatical pro EU troll, RH, (the man who in a zillion posts has never even attempted to justify what is so great about the neoliberal enforcement machine that is the EU) , confusing the Guardianista Remainer myth that Da Yoof are all solidly Remain ( as if young people are a homogenous group) , whereas we oldies are all to be ignored “because we are all about to die “, and must be senile .

        The “working class” (as the larger sub-set of what in Marxist terms , with much of the wage-earning dependent “middle class” compose the proletariat) are that huge social grouping – with no access to expressing their views via the mass media, who are likely not to have engaged in higher education, but may have a craft skill, are working in relatively lower paid jobs, whether “by hand or brain”, are the bulk of the unemployed and underemployed and most subject to zero hour contracts – of a range of ethnicities . They are the social grouping most feeling the impact of unlimited labour supply in their sectors of the job market. Even teachers , particularly in zero-hour contract FE, previously a relatively privileged middle class layer, are nowadays objectively working class . They are not the smug middle class, still largely insulated from the most vicious aspects of neoliberalism on their ,controlled/restricted-entry, areas of the job market – and via equally middle class family connections – able to gain preferential “crony” access to a raft of jobs (via internships and higher qualifications) which the bulk of the working population can only dream about. Denying there is a majority of the population who can be clearly identified as working class – with nothing to gain from EU membership, – as oppose to the middle class strata who dominate politics and the mass media, – is just a facet of the smugness of the almost entirely middle class Remainers/Remoaners, who, unfortunately apparently make up a majority of our active individual Labour Party membership today – and if we are not careful, will lead us into the electoral disaster of backing Remain and/or a second referendum.

      3. ” whereas we oldies are all to be ignored “because we are all about to die “, and must be senile ”

        Lol! That about sums it up. We pensioners are mostly also gullible, rabid right wing groupies who watch the BBC and read the corporate rags… we have stolen the future of the youth because we are selfish. Successive govs (we protested) did nowt…it was us oldies, with no real political influence, wot did it.
        The generational rift and blame being pushed is one of the most divisive aspects of those wanting to shift blame away from the ‘centrist’ established order. Few talk about how far the political sphere has shifted to the right in the decades since Thatcher and neoliberal/neocon ‘values’ became the ‘centre’ or ‘moderate’.

        I remember my father ranting about Thatcher, VAT, poll tax what she did to the miners etc. etc. He died 23 years ago and I think would now be ranting about Blair, Brown, Clegg, Cameron, May and the Guardian and Observer, papers he took all his adult life.. I also think he would still despise and rant about Thatcher.

        Denying the class nature of the neoliberal Capitalist order is beyond my comprehension. Divide and rule works as well as ever its seems. I suppose we now all fall into approved/unapproved ‘identities’ so we can argue and fight amongst our selves about that.

      4. Oh dear, jpenny. You do spout nonsense. It really isn’t radical to do so. More a sort of self-indulgence.

        Your first paragraph is a model of foot-stamping delusion and imagination – and statistically illiterate misconception. Try argument instead sometime. To just unpick a bit of the tangled illogic :

        “Who on earth labels “the older” as “working class” ?”

        No-one. My point exactly. The term ‘working class’ is often used as a meaningless substitution for other variables in an attempt to pretend to radical virtue. It’s a sort of parasitism,

        “that fanatical pro EU troll”

        Obviously, ‘trolls’ have become a foot-stamping term for those you can’t argue against.

        “never even attempted to justify what is so great about the neoliberal enforcement machine that is the EU”

        Obviously, a symptom of a limited attention span and/or simple illiteracy – or inability to grapple with the nature of choice and what has actually been written. The ‘Remain’ position does no more than state the preference for a treaty with near neighbours (and a voice) over a weak subservience to the US and other major trading blocks.

        “the Guardianista Remainer myth that Da Yoof are all solidly Remain”

        Another figment of the fevered imagination that has transformed the simple fact of a steep age-related correlation of ‘Remain’ with decreasing age into a polemical non-statement. I’m actually an old fart – but I haven’t lost my marbles. As to the Guardian – there’s a lot of old bollocks in that journal, but not as much as in a True BLeaver anthology pretending to ‘working class’ authenticity.

        Yes, I’m pleased to recommend that the greater insight of younger people should have more sway in this – rather than the sentimental worship of the Blessed Tony of past renown.A flaw of the last dog’s dinner was the exclusion of many of the relevant population. I’d be happy to give up the time-limited interest of my vote if a more representative population was included, as well as others who were excluded from the mickey-mouse effort that is the indecisive gospel for fanatical BLeavers.

  3. One would like to think this would persuade the PV/Campbell/Soros/Guardian gang to put a sock in; somehow I doubt it because they’re not interested in evidence or analysis, just blind faith and there’s none so blind as those that will not see – backed by those who fear Corbyn and socialism more than anything in the world because their gravy train might come off the rails and their snouts get ripped from the trough.

      1. Our ESRC-sponsored Party Members Project has just surveyed 1034 Labour Party members together with a representative sample of 1675 voters. Our survey of Labour’s grassroots clearly shows that Corbyn’s apparent willingness to see the UK leave the EU – a stance he has recently reiterated – is seriously at odds with what the overwhelming majority of Labour’s members want, and it doesn’t reflect the views of most Labour voters either.

        1034 together with sample 1675, from where south, midlands north. Why are so many people reliant on these so called expert polling. There was an increase in Labour voters in 2017 when the party was excepting the referendum result and said it should be implemented. 80% voted for this, does that not give answer to the poll of a 1000 here and there.

      2. Masmit 12/01/2019 at 1:35 pm

        You appear to have failed to grasp the difference between an academic research survey and a poll commissioned by the Daily Mail.

        Your 80% figure is not really relevant, (incidentally this is a statistic often quoted by RW Tories). Surely you are not trying to claim that the EU was the primary reason that they all voted for Labour or the Tories. At the last election was there another viable option to vote for.

        If you have any concerns about the integrity of the ESRC-sponsored Party Members Project then I suggest you write to them and ask them to explain their methodology. You may want to start your research here https://esrcpartymembersproject.org/project/. Also the ESRC has a very comprehensive site which goes into considerable detail about how they carry out their remit and is quite open in publishing all there members interests.

        If you have any serious concerns that you wish to air then do the research first so that you know what you are talking about. Throwing around baseless accusations does nothing to advance your ‘argument’.

      3. Oh FFS. Argue -of course. But not against evidence and reality. The ‘Remain’ inclination of most Labour members and voters is well-documented over a long period.

        Whatever the faults of polling – this is strong evidence, based on well-established statistical method, with all its error component – as opposed to plaiting the fog of wish fulfilment built on nothing.

      4. RH,
        So we are supposed to believe the polls as fact, or because they are inline with the way you think.
        FFS alright

      5. Don’t be daft. You take the polls as evidence with margins of error – and the evidence all points in one direction in the case of Labour predilections. The more evidence in one direction, the greater the certainty.

        Living in denial isn’t evidence.

      6. RH, there’s no denial on my part. There will be no backtracking to remain and there will be no hard brexit. That’s being realistic.

      7. Thank you Tiresias! 🙂

        But the issue was about where Labour support is at – and it ain’t in that direction.

        Which is a problem, however you look at it.

      8. SteveH,
        Your response is why the argument for remain will never win.
        Majority of Labour members are southern based, with this polls could be skewed with the remain argument, as compared to labour voters all over the country. I don’t advocate hard brexit, neither do I remain. Most people will vote on policies that affect them. All this remain argument is irrelevant.

      9. My apologies but I am having some difficulty in understanding the point you are trying to make. I was simply pointing out that in the complete absence of any evidence to the contrary I trust the integrity of the academic research.
        As I clearly pointed out above. If you believe their research methodology is flawed then get off your butt and do some research to prove it, otherwise you are just pissing in the wind. Baseless theories just don’t cut it. What do you expect me to do, write a letter to them on your behalf?

      10. Masmit quotes from the survey: “Our survey of Labour’s grassroots clearly shows that Corbyn’s apparent willingness to see the UK leave the EU – a stance he has recently reiterated – is seriously at odds with what the overwhelming majority of Labour’s members want, and it doesn’t reflect the views of most Labour voters either.”

        Given that that is a repeat of the blatant MSM lie as to what Corbyn ACTUALLY said, I treat the entire project as having zero credibility.

      11. Ultraviolet 12/01/2019 at 4:12 pm

        It may have been helpful if you had provided some actual evidence to back up what you are saying before casually writing off 3 years of interesting research. If you want to make a point then do the research, I’m certainly not going to waste my time comparing the fine detail of what was and wasn’t said. The balls in your court, not mine.

      12. @RH It is entirely plausible that the majority of Labour opinion is in favour of remaining, and of having a further referendum to get there.

        I am in favour of remaining, and I believe a further referendum will be necessary to get there.

        I also believe without a shadow of a doubt that the path Corbyn is currently following is the only one that can achieve this without throwing millions of working class people into the arms of the hard right. And even if I am wrong about that, a Brexit overseen by Corbyn will unquestionably be less damaging than anything imposed by the Tories.

        If you are anything other than a hard no-deal Brexiter, the path is clear: support Corbyn. Nothing else has a hope of delivering anything remotely close to what you want.

  4. Mascot, I spent this morning surveying Joe and Jane public about the Brexit question. I came also across a few now ex labour members who with a heavy heart (their words) have discontinued their membership in the party because of what they perceive as a “sitting on the fence” attitude as to not to upset the 17 million leave voters. They feel that if Labour continues with Brexit direction there could be an exodus of members and voters alike.

    1. I expect Labour’s policy at any snap general election to be:

      1. Go and speak to the EU to see what is possible.
      2. If a deal that achieves the six tests cannot be achieved, (which we all know it can’t, because those tests are simply a formulation of the Brexiteers’ unachievable promises to win the vote) then the matter will be brought back to Parliament, and the party membership will decide through the appropriate channels what steps should then be taken – including a further referendum.

      Labour may even commit to a further referendum in step 2.

      Assuming that is the policy, why would anyone not opt for that over Theresa’s mess?

    2. They’re not true Labour voters then if Tory imposed austerity means nothing to this future exodus you speak of. Losing cheap flights to their Tuscan villas means more to them than socialism. Good riddance.

      1. Oh FFS! What a masturbatory travesty of electoral reality.

        As if the majority of Labour members and voters have ‘Tuscan villas’. What planet are you on to confuse two issues in a feel-good indulgence???

        I have no patience with this unserious flatulence masquerading as politics.

  5. Perhaps at this point in the debate a certain gentleman recently uttered these IMO very wise words

    ” if you’re living in Tottenham you may well have voted to Remain.

    You’ve got high bills rising debts. You’re in insecure work. You struggle to make your wages stretch and you may be on universal credit, and forced to access food banks.

    You’re up against it.

    If you’re living in Mansfield, you are more likely to have voted to Leave.

    You’ve got high bills, rising debts, you’re in insecure work, you struggle to make your wages stretch and you may be on universal credit and forced to access food banks.

    You’re up against it.

    But you’re not against each other.

    People across the country, whether they voted Leave or Remain know that the system isn’t working for them.

    Some see the EU as a defence against insecurity and hostility. Others see the EU as part of an establishment that plunged them into insecurity and hostility in the first place.

    But it’s the failed system rigged against the many to protect the interests of the few that is the real cause of inequality and insecurity whether it’s in Tottenham or Mansfield.

    And, the real solution is to transform Britain to work in the interests of the vast majority by challenging the entrenched power of a privileged elite.”

    The key bit for me is ” but you’re not against each other.”
    Having had several past heated conversations with fellow comrades here on SB and reading the comments above , I don’t see any point in further debate on the incredibly TOXIC Tory created mess Brexit , IMO we are all falling into the trap set by those “privileged elite” , mentioned above , to see Labour rip itself apart over leave or remain , they sit back and pull the strings and smile as they see the chance of a continuation of the Tory Govt strengthen .
    I am not making further statements as I ‘ve had a belly full of the divisiveness and anger that typifies Brexit .

    1. I think that you have made a telling point about the divisiveness of Brexit.

      The trouble is that Pandora’s Box has been opened. It was opened by the Tories in an attempt to buy off the extreme right, and has elevated a minor concern into a social fracture.

      As I’ve made plain, I have seen no convincing argument for a Brexit trajectory that should never have been initiated – and the fact that it’s a project of the extreme right should fill anyone with left leanings with apprehension.

      The only disagreement that I have with you is that I see no painless way of closing the box again after the Tories’ con job.

    2. Rob. Good points, all these arguments are taking the focus off the real culprits of the Great British Rip Off i.e the Tories. Nevertheless we have to steer a Socialist way through it with Jeremy Corbyn at the helm. Should we do it by Remaining in the EU or by casting ourselves adrift and Leaving?

      The solution must involve young people and I think most people know what they would prefer. More than ever they are teaming up and communicating with each other across Europe and the world. They now have an international outlook rather than a narrow nationalistic view.

  6. Yes will the middle class liberals and centrists in Labour (and Right Wing) be hiring coaches to leaflet for a Peoples Vote in Labour Leave areas?
    This will really help us win won’t it?
    They take a narrow own CLP area view, UK centric view and in my area we have a middle of the road careerist Labour MP, the city by a tiny amount voted Remain.
    In the GE this appointed candidate got 21k votes (thanks to student vote) and Lib Dems 16k but the CLP seems to want Another Peoples Vote but they perhaps assume the whole 21k Labour voters were Remain?
    As I have said we should break the EC Neo-Liberal chain and draw on socialist analysis.
    A good piece SB!

  7. Live in Tottenham, retired – will leaflet and campaign either for a Labour gov’t if there is a general election or for remain if a referendum. Campaigned remain in first referendum – not because the EU is the promised and,but because of who campaigned for Brexit and because I knew a shit storm of racism would be unleashed particularly if Brexit won. Polish friend and work colleugue had their daughter asked in school when she was going home – her mum had lived and worked in London for 20+ years. worst fears realised.

  8. RH, SteveH, JackT,
    I wouldn’t be able took talk or debate any of you face to face, because of the I know more you know nothing, condescending arrogance towards anyone with a different view.

    This attitude smacks in your face Blarism, we tell you what to think.

    There’s an argument now for alignment. I voted for brexit, had never voted before and I never considered UKIP.
    Then I voted for a Jeremy Corbyn led Labour Party. Yes for the first time, there’s something to vote for.
    Why do you dismiss all these new votes, and all the new interest in Jeremy Corbyn’s vision for a more equal UK.
    This is where political Change is, not with more of the same, remain argument.
    I believe politics has moved on and is still moving with the younger generations being more involved.
    If there was to be a backtrack to remain devised by the Labour Party, what do you think will happen to all the new interest.
    The debate should be about alignment and being inclusive for all ages, not remain or hard brexit.
    Except the fact people can make up there own decisions, and don’t need MSM or except polls as guidance.
    Division is mainly deliberate with the argument remain, because There’s no moving to the case of alignment.

  9. Be careful what you wish for. It appears that JC at least has some idea of the consequences of a 2nd Referendum. Not just more divisive, but would be regarded by many as an insult to their first choice. When you vote the wrong way, the elites will just ignore it.

  10. forgotten to model the outcome if a party other than Labour (eg Lib Dems or Greens) calls for a referendum and Labour does not back it. This is the situation we are currently in. In that case Labour vote falls to 33% according to the same poll you have used. Skwawkbox should stop selectively quoting findings – it is incredibly dishonest.

    1. You got it completely wrong, Phil. The situation we’re currently in has Labour 3 points clear, with every other party apart from the Tories ‘calling for’ a new referendum.

      Clearly line 4 can only apply to the Tories calling one – and if Labour didn’t back it then, the poll suggests they’d lose support.

      Which is exactly what the article has said all along.

      1. Clearly the differences between the results you have selected from a Daily Mail poll are so close they are almost meaningless.

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