The former Lib Dem leader said: "Polling shows that 50-60 per cent of Lib Dem voters and Labour voters will vote tactically once they know how they can use their votes most effectively"
Electoral pacts between left of centre parties are no longer necessary to remove the Tories from office as ‘there is enough understanding now about tactical voting’, Vince Cable has said. The former Liberal Democrat leader made the comments at a fringe meeting at the party’s autumn conference.
Cable was speaking at a meeting hosted by cross-party campaign group Compass, a group which supports closer working relationships between left of centre parties.
At the meeting, Cable faced a series of questions about whether the Liberal Democrats should engage in pre-election pacts with other parties in order to remove the Tories from office, and whether the party should be willing to enter coalition with Labour if Keir Starmer’s party fails to secure a majority at the next election.
In the last few election cycles, the idea that parties such as Labour, the Liberal Democrats and the Greens should cooperate in elections to maximise the chances of unseating Tory MPs has gained many supporters in progressive circles. Dubbed a ‘progressive alliance’, Compass has been among the groups advocating for this approach.
Speaking at the meeting, Cable said that “in principle, there is no reason why one shouldn’t have pacts.” However, he went on to say that he thinks it is “highly unlikely that there will be such a thing before the general election” on a national level and that there is “no prospect” of Labour participating in one.
He went on to say that “there is enough understanding now about tactical voting that it isn’t necessary” to agree a pre-election pact in order to remove the Tories from power. He added: “Polling shows that 50-60 per cent of Lib Dem voters and Labour voters will vote tactically once they know how they can use their votes most effectively”.
Chris Jarvis is head of strategy and development at Left Foot Forward