Calls for strategic voting to block Brexit at UK’s general election
Thursday, 31 October 2019
The President of the European Council Charles Michel congratulated British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on his election victory on Friday morning. Credit: Belga.
An anti-Brexit campaign called on Wednesday for strategic voting in the 12 December elections to promote the victory of candidates who will push to block the UK’s withdrawal from the EU.
Polls suggest that just over half of the British population are against Brexit. However, their votes are spread throughout the various groups that oppose Brexit.
The anti-Brexit civil society campaign, Best for Britain, has calculated that if 30% of Remainers agreed to vote tactically, a coalition supporting a new referendum could come to power following the 12 December election.
As such, the civil society group have launched a website to guide voters on how to vote strategically for the anti-Brexit candidate best placed to win.
“Whether people like it or not, it’s going to be a Brexit election,” said MP and former Liberal Democrat leader Vince Cable, who wants to cancel the Brexit process, at a press conference.
Even if tactical voting is “not ideal”, “it is a powerful tool that must be used”, Cable continued.
However, the data on the site is still incomplete, pending the registration of all candidates and their positions with regard to a second referendum on Brexit.
However, Best for Britain has “much, much hope,” according to its director Naomi Smith. If voters follow “their advice” and vote strategically, the formation of a pro-Brexit conservative majority can be prevented.
Officially, the various party leaders who are in favour of a second referendum are not in favour of any electoral pact.
In particular, the Labour Party denied promising the Scottish Nationalist Party (SNP) a new referendum on Scottish independence in exchange for an alliance.
“If those in favour of keeping the UK in the EU do not make a deal, then it must be up to the voters to do so,” said Smith.
In some constituencies, parties have occasionally allied themselves against Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Conservative party.
In August, in a by-election in Wales, the Liberal Democrats (centre, Europhile) managed to take two Conservative seats after smaller pro-EU parties withdrew.
For the upcoming elections, the Liberal Democrats have agreed not to run a candidate against independent Dominic Grieve, a former Conservative minister who was ousted from the Tories for being in favour of a second referendum.