The general election is exactly one year away and commentators are falling over themselves to try and predict what will happen over the course of the next 12 months and, more crucially, who will come out on top. As it stands, today’s YouGov poll puts Labour at 37% with a 3 point lead over the Conservatives, which is a slight drop since last week where the lead was hovering around 5 or 6 points. The Lib Dems are still lagging behind UKIP with 8% and 13% respectively.
Labour’s lead over the Conservatives is small, and may well be shrinking, so Labour need a new strategy to try and put some distance between themselves and the Tories. They still seem to be searching.
Wednesday’s Labour party political broadcast, done in the style of a Harry Enfield sketch, portrays Clegg as a weak willed little boy succumbing to the bullying tactics of stereotypically Conservative toffs. The broadcast is admittedly quite amusing in its attempts to simultaneously show Nick Clegg as a pushover on policy and the Conservatives as the old boys party of the rich, however it is also quite unorthodox as a political broadcast and led Dan Hodges at the Telegraph to call it proof that “the Labour Party is slowly but surely going clinically insane”. This, coupled with a multi-pronged attack on the Lib Dems from Harriet Harman and Ed Balls, shows that Labour might be trying to avoid the prospect of another coalition government in 2015 by eating into the Liberal Democrat vote. However, given the small size of Labour’s lead over the Conservatives at the moment – plus the uknown likely role of UKIP and of turnout differentials – nobody can legitimately claim to give a definitive prediction of what the election result will look like.
He was formerly Head of Policy at the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP). With degrees in history and economics from the Universities of Oxford and London, Jake is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, a trustee of the European Association of Philanthropy and Giving and advises several governments on public policy. He also advises clients on CSR and philanthropy activities.
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