Will Labour Or Conservatives Lose More Votes To Brexit Party? LBC Explains
4 November 2019, 14:31
LBC's Political Editor Theo Usherwood explained to James O'Brien what the Brexit Party standing candidates will mean for Labour and the Conservatives.
Nigel Farage announced that he's not standing to be an MP - but will instead field 600 candidates in the coming General Election.
Nigel Farage has insisted it will take Labour votes but Theo Usherwood has done some number-crunching and isn't convinced by that argument.
Theo explained: "Now, his line this morning has been that he's after Labour votes in the north of England and in the Midlands.
"But I've just spent the last hour and a half for you, James, dedicatedly going over some of the numbers in northern constituencies which the Conservatives want to find out whether Nigel Farage and the Brexit Party would hit the Conservative vote or the Labour vote.
"Because they, of course, will remember some Conservative MPs have been goading Nigel Farage to stand in their constituencies because they say they believe his line that the Brexit Party will win over Labour voters, half the labour vote and then the Tories get the seats.
Their numbers can remain the same and they can win the seat. They don't need an increase in their vote because the Brexit Party splits the Labour vote."
He continued: "But going over the numbers of four key constituencies, actually the Brexit Party takes away votes from the Tories. So if we take Workington.'Workington man' was the stereotype that was played out last week.
"In 2015, UKIP, which is de facto Brexit Party, scored more than 7000 votes. Of course, UKIP was reduced to just over 1500 back in 2017. But, actually, whilst the Labour vote went up a little bit, the big winner from that, the big beneficiary from that was Clark Vasey, the Conservative candidate.
"So in other words, the Brexit Party in 2015 took votes away from the Tory candidate, the same is true in Warrington North. In Ashfield, the Tories came second in 2015 and they came second to UKIP.
So there was 10,000 UKIP votes. Where did they go back in 2017? Conservatives. To Tony Harper, he nearly took the seat."
He added: "So when Jacob Rees-Mogg comes in to LBC and says. Farage needs to stand aside. He's right to make that from a Conservative point of view. He needs to make that. Farage needs to step aside."
They then spoke about Nigel Farage deciding not to run. Theo Usherwood told James O'Brien it makes sense because when he campaigned in Thanet South, Nigel Farage didn't win a seat and couldn't go out and about campaigning around the country.