Can Reform actually win any seats? - First Past the Post will DESTROY Nigel Farage

Nigel Farage Lee Anderson Reform UK

Nigel Farage and Lee Anderson on the campaign trail for Reform

GB News
Craig Whittaker

By Craig Whittaker

Published: 11/06/2024

- 14:11

Nigel Farage is currently standing as the Reform candidate for Claction

As I sit looking on at a General Election that I have extraordinarily little to do apart from go out and campaign for colleagues I have worked with over the last 15 years, I can’t help but reflect in bewilderment at why a party like Reform would want to put a Socialist Labour party into power.

No matter how many angles you study the scenario from, it always comes back to, “A vote for Reform, gives you a Labour government.”

I found myself at a dinner recently in London where the guest Speaker was Richard Tice, the then Leader of Reform (oh how a week is a long time in politics!).

I know a little more about Richard than I would normally because the husband of one of my office team, is a close University friend of Richard but I had never heard him speak before.

My main ‘take away’ from his speech, followed by the obligatory Q & A was, ‘Naivety.’ He trotted out the normal lines which will pander to a certain element of the electorate but when he was drilled for more detail, he just had no depth to his answers and was quite vague.

Incredibly, when the questions were not asked what he wanted to be asked, his partner Isabel Oakeshott, stood to ask a question or two of him under the guise that she is a journalist.

The reality though is whilst Richard seems a nice guy on a personal level, it was clear that he was out of his depth in the political arena. Similarly, on the doorstep, whilst the electorate are grumpy about the Conservatives, there are no switchers to Labour.

People just do not trust Starmer and what is very apparent is Starmer is not Blair.

The ‘First past the post system,’ is the reason Reform are such an asset to Labour. They will give you a Labour government by default. The latest example of when this happened was in the 2015 General Election where UKIP amassed almost four million votes throughout the country but only gained one Member of Parliament – Douglas Carswell.

To put that into perspective, the SNP at the same election gained fifty-six seats with only just over one million, four hundred thousand votes and the Liberal Democrats gained eight seats on just over two million, four hundred thousand votes.

This seems incredibly undemocratic however, the difference between the SNP and UKIP was that the SNP vote was concentrated in specific seats, whilst the UKIP vote was spread throughout many constituencies around the country. First Past the Post for smaller parties like Reform just does not work.

The alternative however brings about paralysis of parliaments because each party wants some form of power and agenda to make any coalition work, which, under Proportional Representation you almost certainly get a coalition government.

We all know how well that worked from the 2010 UK election result. The big agenda items to reform to any country are ignored for the sake of the day to day running of a country and as we saw with the Coalition government, there were many items of reform that were not included within the Coalition Agreement.

I know Richard Tice and Nigel Farage also do not want a Conservative government, but you cannot have both, especially when their policies are so far removed from the very Labour Government they will facilitate. The smart move for Reform would be to join the Conservative party and work from within to achieve their goals and policy positions. Under the First Past the Post model, it is the only way they will ever have any form of power and influence over how the country is run.

There are already Conservative Members of Parliament who have the same views at Richard and Nigel.

The problem for them though is there are too few of them to have a real impact on Conservative policy and are often dubbed as divisive and disruptive.

If there were more of them, they really would be a force to be reckoned with. In the meantime, Reform becomes Labour’s biggest asset.

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