Oh, good grief

Via Nick, another Blairian fantasy:

The PM also this morning urged Labour supporters to turn out to vote on May 5, saying: “It only takes one in 10 of our voters to drift off to the Liberal Democrats and you end up with a Tory government.”

That is a figure hotly disputed by the Lib Dems, who said the swing voters would have to be concentrated entirely in Labour/Tory marginals – and even then the figure would be much closer to one in four.

What they don’t say is that it’s a figure hotly disputed by anyone with a brain. I’ve been following the polls, and the running average of all of the national polls I’ve seen is something like this:

Labour: 38%
Conservatives: 33%
Liberal Democrats: 20%
Others: 9%

Wave our magic wand of tactical-voting apathy – what is this about drifting off to the Liberal Democrats? “Sod it, I just can’t be bothered voting Labour this time – I’m going to take the easy way out and cast a protest vote for a party I’ve never voted for in my life. I’d better take something to read in case there’s a queue – pass us that Trotskyist Anarchist, could you?”

But anyway. Transfer 10% of the Labour vote to the Lib Dems and you get a split of 34.2%/33%/23.8%/9%. Plug that into the BBC’s very wonderful seat calculator and you get… a Labour majority of 62.

The polls could be wrong, of course. More to the point, all the polls except YouGov could be wrong. YouGov has consistently reported a much narrower gap between the levels of Labour and Tory support, more like:

Labour: 36%
Conservatives: 34%
Liberal Democrats: 21%
Others: 9%

Transfer 10%, and you get 32.4%/34%/24.6%/9%. And… a hung parliament, with Labour taking 318 seats out of 646; the Tories and the Liberal Democrats put together would only have 299.

The facts are what they’ve been all along:

The Conservatives have a mountain to climb (hey, pictures!).

They’re showing no sign of being able to climb it.

Liberal Democrat votes won’t enable them to do it.

And:

Tony Blair is constitutionally unable to make any appeal to natural Labour voters which will actually get the vote out. From that same Guardian article:

the prime minister and chancellor joined forces to unveil a new slogan of “Forward with Blair & Brown”.

Good old Gordon – at least he’s an ex-pinko. We’ll be seeing a lot more of him this coming week.

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