This election hinges on the MILLIONS of disillusioned that no one can predict - Sir John Redwood

Election 2024 vote

Will the disillusioned masses go out to vote in this election?

GB News
John Redwood

By John Redwood

Published: 30/05/2024

- 08:41

Sir John Redwood was the Conservative MP for Wokingham

The stay at home party won the local elections. The main parties need to up their game to excite enthusiasm to go and vote.

I have fought nine elections in Wokingham over the years.

Each time the Lib Dem candidate put out materials saying they were "winning here" or that they could win, courtesy of some dodgy polls and carefully spun local election results.

Each time they lost. Over the years across the country Lib Dems have kept to the same formula. Where the two main parties see an election as a time to argue about what they will do for people over a five year parliament, the Lib Dems always want to spend more time talking about themselves and their own possible career advancement. I expect they will do the same again this election.

Sir John Redwood

Sir John Redwood

GB News

This election deserves better. Many in an unhappy public are telling pollsters that they do not want to vote at all, or have not made up their minds because they have not yet seen a compelling proposition from the main protagonists.

The large Labour lead is there in the polls, but relies on many millions of former Conservative voters staying at home who are currently ignored in the forecast.

Alternatively the Labour lead hinges on them voting for smaller parties to allow the Labour vote to hold sway. No-one knows in practice what those millions are going to do.

Many of them do not fancy a Labour government and are arguing over whether they have to vote Conservative to stop it. If they persevere with abstention as many currently wish it may prove costly and difficult to get rid of a new government they dislike even more.

Deciding not to vote or to spoil your ballot paper is sad for democracy. A voter who does this loses the moral right to criticise what follows.

Telling everyone you were not foolish enough to vote for the government if it turns out to be a government that generally lets people down leaves you taking the hit. People write in to my website to tell me they want a "None of the above" box on the ballot paper.

I tell them if they feel like that they should run for office or they should join the least bad party from their point of view and work with others to influence it for the better. Democracy cannot work without voters doing their bit and engaging the politicians. There is still time to register to be a candidate.

Why is there this cynicism? Many think this Conservative and this Labour party are too alike. The differences on economic policy are small, related to VAT on school fees and unresolved issues about the scale of green investment. Both back helping Ukraine in its war. Both want to cut waiting lists in the NHS and both rule out increases in the major taxes.

People feel let down over past inflation. The Bank of England let it happen on the Conservative watch . Labour did not warn about it or have a way to stop it.

Many voters dislike the drift up in taxes to pay for an ever dearer state. If public services had improved people would feel a bit better, but with trouble at the Post Office, massive cost overruns at HS2 , and the blood plasma scandal there is some disillusion with them.

The two main parties have to redouble their efforts to explain where they differ and why their ideas are best.

Conservatives will hammer away at curbing migration where Labour wants more safe routes of entry. Conservatives want more tax cuts and have started down that course.

Labour want more green investment and have set out six modest first steps. Bring on the true debate about how you will serve us better.

There are many disillusioned stay at home party people to win over.

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