Left Out Liberal

A left-wing/liberal look at the UK's General Election of 2005.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Poll Summons

The other day I was moaning about there being a lack of polls, and so today the Independent published their latest figures, showing Labour's lead to be just 5%. I say "just" even though according to the article this gives Blair a majority still over 100. Which is unacceptable.

But even though I say that, I regret it, because I know that it means the Tories are going to take those seats that make up the difference between what we have now and what we will end up with. Of course, it's the usual travesty of our electoral system in operation; these kind of percentages would leave the country stuck fast in coalition governments if we had pure PR.

Of course, this poll puts the Conservatives further behind than the 2% gap predicted by MORI at the end of February. But at the very least, it gives further evidence to the claim that the Conservatives are indeed catching up, while the Lib Dems just cannot get past that 20% mark.

Things will hot up on this front once the election is finally called. Indeed, it cannot be many weeks away now. We've had so many false-starts already, I just wish we could finally get things underway. It's getting tedious seeing Blair engaging in electioneering and then denying that he knows when the date of the election is. In fact, it's just insulting.

One thing's for sure, abortion is not going to be an issue. People will try to make it so, but thankfully we realise that this should not be decided at elections. We have a tradition in this country that allows a free vote on such issues, therefore if a leader were to declare their stance, they risk polarising the issue and that does not assist there to be a sensible debate. Most people realise this. It's not often I defend Tony Blair, but in this case he is absolutely right to not comment.

In any case, it's not going to be what people bear in mind when they vote. All polls consistently show that public services and the economy are high on the agenda. Michael Howard isn't going to change that.


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