Why is Swinson targetting Labour-Tory marginals?

She's been campaigning in seats like Battersea and Watford.

Nobody should expect the Liberal Democrats to stand aside for Labour candidates but they should at least not focus their resources in seats where they could split the anti-Tory vote.

While there have been calls for Labour and the Lib Dems to stand aside for each other, this was never going to happen.

Labour can’t forgive austerity and the Lib Dems accuse Labour of being a Brexit Party.

Also, being linked to Corbyn’s Labour could damage the Liberal Democrats in the rural south-west seats they need to take from the Tories.

Similarly, being linked to the Lib Dems could damage Labour in the Leave-voting towns they need to keep from the Tories.

However, the two parties could work together to stop Johnson getting to Downing Street by at least focussing their resources on the seats where their party is the one placed to beat the Tories.

You can tell where a party is focussing its resources by where it chooses to send its leader.

A look at Corbyn and Swinson’s diaries show that both parties are currently targetting Tory-Labour marginals.

Since the election, Corbyn has visited: Gloucester, Harlow, Putney, Milton Keynes, Crawley, Crewe, Telford and Pudsey. All are Labour-Tory marginals, mostly held by the Tories.

In the same time, Swinson has visited: Golders Green, Watford, Esher, Wells, North-East Fife, Battersea, Doncaster (due to the floods) and Cardiff.

Of these, only the Somerset seat of Wells is a Tory-Lib Dem marginal. In Golders Green, Battersea, Watford and (to a lesser extent) Esher, Labour are best-placed to beat the Tories.

The choice to target these seats is particularly strange because, as this visualisation shows, there are lots of Tory-Lib Dem marginals the party should be focussing on.

Swinson and her campaigners should be spending much more time in places like Cheltenham, Richmond Park, Cheadle, Lewis and St Albans. Perhaps they plan to.

By the same token, Corbyn and Labour campaigners should stay out of these places.

In all of these seats, the Tories have a smaller majority over the Lib Dems than the 8,000 one that the Lib Dems overturned in this year’s Brecon and Radnorshire byelection.

Thankfully, sensible decisions don’t have to come from the top of the party down. Ordinary Labour and Lib Dem party activists can help beat the Tories by choosing carefully the seats they choose to campaign in. Let’s hope they do so.

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5 Responses to “Why is Swinson targetting Labour-Tory marginals?”

  1. Alasdair Macdonald

    The LibDems are aiming for the ‘One Nation’ Tory and Tory ‘Remain’ voters and, since Ms Swinson was probably the most ardent ‘austerian’ in the ConLibDem coalition 2010/15, she is probably aiming for a similar arrangement with the Tories in the event of another Parliament with no single party having an overall majority.

  2. Tom Sacold

    Why should we expect anything else from the Limp Dims ?

    They are the Tory’s slimy cousins. Free market capitalists in everything they do, whatever they say. They jumped into bed with Cameron and Osborn at the first opportunity and threw away all of their promises.

    The Limp Dims cannot be trusted !!!

  3. Rupert Sheard

    Interesting. If you look at Swinson’s diary it makes sense:

    Golders Green and Watford – going after the Jewish vote

    Wells, NE Fife, Cardiff, former LD seats

    Battersea – strong remain votes.

    I think no one really knows what is going to have traction at this stage. The manifestos will help, but they may all come out too late.

  4. Graham Ward

    Cheltenham, Richmond Park, Cheadle, Lewis and St Albans are all going to go Lib Dem anyway. Better focussing resources on the next step up. Labour hasn’t a hope of taking Golders Green, and the Lib Dem’s are much better placed to take Battersea and Watford.

  5. Gary

    Whilst I despise Swinson for many, many reasons I must say that the article is written with breathtaking arrogance!

    Labour refused to enter into a deal (fair enough) but somehow expects that another party will give way when Labour won’t reciprocate? They are doing EXACTLY what they accuse the LibDems of ie putting party before country. If they WERE genuinely interested they would have entered into deals with both the LibDems and in Scotland the SNP.

    But Labour AREN’T interested in what’s good for the country and never have been. I’ve watched their behaviour in the Scottish Parliament over the past twenty years and found that at EVERY single opportunity to do good for the country and help to get good legislation (that Labour voters would expect them to agree with) they have utterly rejected if it comes from the SNP. Even to the extent of siding with the TORIES to repeal legislation aimed at ending Sectarian violence at football matches. I can only assume this is to appeal to sectarian voters. Now that the law has been repealed UEFA is asking the SFA to implement essentially the same law as was repealed due to recent events where English footballers were racially abused when playing overseas.

    I believe that Corbyn is a sincere man and the smears are flat out lies BUT Labour, particularly in Scotland has betrayed EVERY SINGLE ONE of it’s founding principles out of spite putting it’s own interests before that of the country. As a result they are now a fourth place party, and deservedly so…

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