'Reform is not clicking!' Matt Goodwin issues warning for Tice and Sunak over Britain's 'disillusionment'

'Reform is not clicking!' Matt Goodwin issues warning for Tice and Sunak over Britain's 'disillusionment'

Something isn't clicking for Reform, says Matt Goodwin

Ben Chapman

By Ben Chapman

Published: 01/03/2024

- 11:18

Updated: 01/03/2024

- 18:07

Simon Danczuk secured a little more than six per cent of the vote

Reform UK is “not clicking” and need a shift in strategy for electoral success, according to top pollster Matt Goodwin.

The Rochdale by-election saw the party’s candidate, Simon Danczuk, secure a little more than six per cent of the vote, coming sixth behind the former Labour candidate Azhar Ali, who was booted out of Keir Starmer’s party after leaked recordings of him making disparaging remarks about Israel came to the fore.

Reform leader Richard Tice was less than impressed with what he claims was “menacing behaviour” in the lead up to the vote, suggesting his candidate had received a death threat during the campaign and was subject to “daily intimidation and slurs”.

According to Goodwin, the party needs to try something different if it is going to cut through and win seats at the general election.

Matt Goodwin and Richard Tice

Matt Goodwin says something 'isn't clicking' for Tice's party


“Reform certainly underperformed”, said Goodwin.

“Nationally, they’re averaging 11 per cent in the polls. We saw them do a little better than that in Wellingborough.


“They should really have done a lot better in Rochdale. It does have quite a significant white, working class vote.

“They should really have momentum behind them given where they are nationally.

“There is something not quite clicking here for Reform.”

While the party had a more significant share of the votes at the by-elections in Kingswood and Wellingborough, Goodwin believes they should have done better.

Nigel Farage

Nigel Farage said last month that Tice has 'saved' Reform

GB News
Richard TiceRichard Tice is the leader of Reform GB News

“Given the enormous disillusionment there is in the country over the issues Reform is targeting, stopping the small boats, they should”, he said.

“We learned yesterday from new data in the Home Office that we’ve only removed 1.3 per cent of people who have come over in small boats.

“We also learned yesterday we’re granting 99 per cent of all asylum applications to people from the likes of Afghanistan and so on.

“Based on this fiasco, Reform should be doing better, but something isn’t clicking.

“Is it money? Is it manpower? Is it leadership? Is it charisma? What is it?”

Galloway denied his supporters had engaged in any intimidation, and claimed on Sky News that Tice had invited him to be a Reform UK candidate in a recent by-election.

He added that he hoped he would be introduced to the Commons by Conservative former minister Sir David Davis and the former Labour leader, and now independent MP, Jeremy Corbyn.

A spokesperson for the charity Campaign Against Antisemitism said: “George Galloway has an atrocious record of baiting the Jewish community.”

They added: “Given his historic inflammatory rhetoric and the current situation faced by the Jewish community in this country, we are extremely concerned by how he may use the platform of the House of Commons in the remaining months of this Parliament.”

Goodwin added that voter apathy potentially explains why Reform could struggle in harvesting votes, with many of their core base potentially disillusioned by the state of the political climate.

He added this could too be a “big problem” for Rishi Sunak, saying the “real winner” at the general election could be voter apathy.

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