Archive for the 'Tim Farron' Category


TMay’s much repeated assertion that Corbyn becomes PM if CON loses 6 seats doesn’t stand up to scrutiny

Monday, May 29th, 2017

Starting 99 seats ahead gives the PM a big cushion

One of the practices that is followed at general election times is for comparisons to be made with what happened at the election before not taking into account defections or by-elections. So for the purposes of comparison the above table is the starting point. UKIP has one MP while the LD total excludes their Richmond Park by-election gain.

As can be seen Team TMay starts in a very strong position – 99 seats ahead of LAB and 12 seats ahead of all other parties combined and would need to lose 50 to LAB for JC’s party to be top on seats. That seems an almost impossible ask give current polling.

The 326 seats required for a majority conceals the fact that Sinn Fein do not take up their seats making an effective majority of 16.

The idea that Corbyn could become PM with 6 CON losses assumes that MPs of every other party would be ready to back him and that he could retain the support of the entire Labour parliamentary party.

Given JC’s record on Northern Ireland is it implausible to think that the DUP and other unionists would back him for number 10.

On top of that Farron has made a very specific pledge not to go into coalition after June 8th.

TMay’s statement is a classic turnout motivator which is not underpinned by the reality.

Mike Smithson


Is Theresa May planning on toppling Tim Farron?

Sunday, May 7th, 2017

Could Tim Farron losing his seat be the shock of June 8th?

I found the above tweet fascinating, Jim Waterson of Buzzfeed analysed which seats the Tories are targeting by looking at the ad buys in local newspapers. The one that caught my attention was Westmorland and Lonsdale, the constituency of Tim Farron.

The symbolism of Tim Farron, the arch remainer and and advocate of another referendum, losing his seat on June 8th would  be yet another blow to those opposed  to (hard) Brexit, would appeal to both Mrs May and Sir Lynton Crosby.

It was said that the remoteness of Westmorland and Lonsdale, and the anticipated closeness of the 2015 general election were the only reasons David Cameron and Sir Lynton Crosby didn’t target the seat as part of their black widow strategy against their coalition partners.

With this general election much easier for the Tories thanks to Labour’s choice to fight it with Corbyn as leader, you can see them deciding to target Tim Farron’s seat this time, the newspaper ad buy might be indicative of that, simply because they don’t have to spend quite so much time and effort in the Con/Lab marginals.

If it does happen, there will be a certain symmetry, Tim Farron first won the seat in 2005 as part of the Lib Dem decapitation strategy aimed at senior Tories, where he defeated the well known Doctor Who fan Tim Collins, which as a Whovian I took very badly, the year Doctor Who returned as a series after a sixteen year hiatus.

I suspect by buying ads in the Westmorland Gazette, the Tories are targeting the Barrow and Furness constituency, but at the time of writing, several bookies were offering 8/1 on the Tories taking the seat, I’ve decided to place £50 on it.

It probably won’t win, Paddy Power are offering the best odds on Tim Farron holding his seat at 1/14 which tells you a lot, but with the national polling indicating the Tories have gone up around 10% and above since the last general election, whilst the Lib Dems are stuck on something close to their 2015 vote share, to my mind it does make sense. If the UKIP voters in the seat do switch to the Tories en masse, it would only require a Lib Dem to Con swing of just over 6% for the seat to turn blue.

To help win over Lib Dem voters in the constituency, I suspect Mrs May will highlight her own liberal attitudes to them and other voters, such as her introducing same sex marriage, in stark contrast to the long time Tim Farron took to explain his favoured position when it comes to gay sex.



Farron says Corbyn’s now “cheerleader in chief for the Conservative Brexit government”

Tuesday, January 10th, 2017

Corbyn’s LAB re-launch day – how its going so far

One of the features of the post-GE215 uprising within Labour that brought Corbyn victory in the leadership elections was the way that anyone who opposed their man was tagged by the Corbynistas as a “Tory”. In Labour circles this is the ultimate insult and it was used effectively to undermine the alternative contenders.

This form of abuse has continued as we see almost hourly on social media. All of this is why Tim Farron’s form attack on the Corbyn BREXIT position will infuriate the leader’s backers. This is an ultra senstitive sensitive point.

The challenge, of course is that the Corbyn’s approach means he can now be portrayed as backing the Tory mainstream on the political issue that will dominate 2017 and beyond – how the UK extracts itself from the EU.

The re-launch which follows less than supportive words for Corbyn from UNITE boss Len McCluskey has the look of a last ditch effort to turn the polling round and find way a way of looking credible. Ladbrokes announced these odds this morning.

Mike Smithson


Team Corbyn makes a generous New Year gift to Tim Farron given that 68% of current LAB voters think it is wrong to leave

Monday, January 9th, 2017

Mike Smithson


Farron’s speech was pretty well received but what a mountain his party has to climb

Wednesday, September 23rd, 2015

Reaction from leading commentators on final morning of LD conference