BillotheWisp’s SDP Attack Dog

Give him ten years and he will have your leg off.
You may be surprised to hear that the small Social Democratic Party (SDP) are standing candidates in no less than 20 seats this General Election.

In fact I was amazed and pleasantly so.

The SDP is a thoroughly decent party that deserves support. So I thought I’d spend a some time just looking at the potential for these 20 candidates.

So here are my thoughts. They may be right. They may be wrong. But I hope you find them interesting.

Lets deal with what will be presented as “the down side” first

Will these 20 SDP candidates potentially split the Leave vote? Could they allow the LibDems (or any other bunch of juveniles) in through the back door?

The answer to that is a resounding NO!

All of these seats are safe seats for the present incumbent. To anyone other than the existing MP they are no-hopers (that includes the SDP).

In other words (short of a miracle) there will be no change to the MP in any of these 20 seats.

You may well ask: What is the point in fighting in a constituency when you know you are going to lose?

For the larger partys that is a moot point. To them concentrating on no-hope safe seats would be crazy. In safe seats (when held by another party), the big party’s often just field a paper candidate. A token. Someone who in all likelihood will be here today and gone tomorrow.

But for a small party like the SDP seeking to expand its base, this is all about getting noticed and building a base. No SDP candidate will be gone tomorrow. Win or lose.

The most important aspect to this is that these seats are safe seats with majorities for the current MP in the many thousands.. So any individual voting for any of the partys standing, in essence knows their vote will not change the outcome.

Let’s say you are a traditional Labour supporter in a safe Conservative seat.

You won’t vote Tory. Especially as they will win the seat anyway.

But maybe you are committed to Leaving the EU. What can you do?

Do you vote for the spotty ex-student neo-Marxist paper candidate who is an ardent Remainer? Someone who abhors your EU preference and probably views you and your family with disdain?

Are you really going to register one more vote of support for Jeremy Corbyn? A man who in all likelihood is somebody you despise?

Look at it the other way. Say you are in a safe Labour seat.

Again whatever you vote will make no difference to who is the MP. But should you add support to the winner when you know they have been (in all likelihood) architects of the opposition to Brexit?
Are you going to vote Conservative when Conservative policies (other than Brexit) feel suspect?

Then what about the Brexit party?

To me it looks like the Brexit Party is imploding. It has little apparent policy other than that implied by its name. To me it looks like they are dying. A vote for them in these circumstances would truly be a wasted vote.

As for the Lib Dems – well, surprise, surpise!

Thirty per cent of Liberal Democrats voted to leave in 2016.

Where are they going to go?

Will they pile up votes for the local Corbynista? Vote Tory? Vote for the “new” LibDems that discarded democracy like a used tissue?

The alternative is a party that has actually sorted out policy and has a route plan. The SDP.

They won’t win. But none of the others will either. But a vote for the SDP will be another brick in building a truly fair, non elitist working class movement. A vote that would, if used otherwise, count for nothing.

This will be a hard month for those standing for the SDP. In reality getting a thousand votes will be impressive. Saving their deposit (5% of the turnout – say 2500 votes) will be a victory. Any more than that will be amazing.

I don’t think that any SDP MP’s will be elected. Though it would be nice. I suspect most candidates however hard they work, will just get a few hundred votes.

But with a bit of prompting the decent people of this country, whose vote will otherwise count for little, may be persuaded to start the ball rolling and register a vote for change.

Maybe not change today. But change for their children and the future.

What I intend to do in the next series of posts is promote a number of the constituencies in which the SDP are standing. If for no other reason than to give them a tiny bit more publicity and Google link love.

These will be my unprompted thoughts (no one else’s). I hope they help. If they don’t then discard them.

No comments: