Published On: Mon, Nov 4th, 2019

General Election news: Pollster John Curtice reveals Remainer Lib Dem tactical voting plot | Politics | News

On December 12, the UK will head to the polls, in what some are dubbing a chance to reiterate opinions on Brexit. Boris Johnson has pledged to “get Brexit done” and for those who want to see Brexit through, he may be the obvious choice this election.

However, Remainers are encouraging voters to make their choice tactically.

Voting tactically is when voters back a candidate they would not usually support to prevent someone else winning.

This is backed by Liberal Democrat MP Sir Vince Cable, exiled Tory Dominic Grieve and Labour’s Anna McMorrin.

Their campaign is encouraging voters to visit getvoting.org to learn how to vote tactically.

Read More: Election: Momentum raises £100k in 24 hours to unseat 11 Tory MPs

Former party leader Sir Vince said of tactical voting: “It’s a powerful tool and we’ve got to use it.”

The website advises visitors to “use your vote to stop Brexit: find out which candidate in your area is the best chance of getting a Pro-EU MP.

“Stop Boris Johnson’s Brexit plan to take away our rights, our NHS, and our future in Europe.”

It then asks for the voters’ postcode and recommends who to vote for in their area for the best chance of stopping Brexit.

With the polls tipping in Mr Johnson’s favour, this may be why Remainers are looking for options in the upcoming election.

Mr Curtice wrote: “At the last election the Lib Dems came second to the Conservatives in only 29 seats, whereas Labour secured that position in 273.

“However the Lib Dems are stronger and Labour weather than in 2017.

“We would now expect the Lib Dems to come second in 105 seats the Tories might be expected to win, with Labour in that position in 193.

“Thus, we expect a tool designed to encourage voters to vote tactically against the Tories to suggest that the Lib Dems are now better placed to defeat the conservatives in some of the seats where the party came third last time around.”

Tactical voting relies on the public using their own research and intuition to choose who to back to edge out a candidate they strongly oppose.

But the same result can be delivered with pacts between parties, as is occurring in Mr Grieve’s Beaconsfield constituency where he will stand as an independent, unopposed by the Lib Dems.

Pollster Lewis Baston provided the PM with some optimism saying: “My own view is that it will be quite hard in that seat to persuade people that Lib Dems or Labour are out of the running and therefore it’s quite a tough ask,” he said.

“I think prime ministers often get a bit of a bump in their own seat anyway so it’s a tough one.”

Is tactical voting legal?

Tactical voting is perfectly legal in the UK, as voters can choose whichever candidate they want on the ballot paper no matter the reason.

Not only is tactical voting allowed, but sometimes parties choose not to stand in certain seats for tactical purposes.

This can prevent a split vote over two parties with similar ideologies.


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