After the General Election, will the UK become a one-party nation?
YES – Rupert Myers, barrister, writer and associate fellow at Bright Blue.
The Conservative Party will win big on 8 June. Plainly, we won’t end up with a literal one-party state, but it might well feel like one for a while.
Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party is so disastrous that the party’s outriders are already managing expectations over the size of the loss. Talented, centrist Labour MPs will lose their seats while Corbyn, shadow chancellor John McDonnell, and company retain theirs.
Labour will be reduced in size within the parliamentary chamber, and talent will be lost. This election risks hollowing out the left into a barren husk of politicians unwilling to give up power to the centrists. Ukip as an electoral force is spent, and it is extremely unlikely to recover from the Brexit referendum, so Theresa May’s right flank is protected.
The Liberal Democrats have failed to make the best of their Remain strategy, and are unlikely to see any real surge, leaving the Conservatives largely unchallenged south of Hadrian’s wall.
NO – Andrew Hawkins, chairman of ComRes.
Obviously, Theresa May looks set to win, and win big. Despite Labour’s manifesto pledges being popular, most voters in a recent ComRes poll feared a Corbyn government would be a “disaster”. But that does not mean untrammelled Tory rule. Scotland, where the party would be doing well to win 10 seats, will stay mostly yellow. Wales may be easier, but in big English metropolitan areas, Conservative victories are harder to win. In London, Labour have the challenge of a manifesto which will hit high earners, but Sadiq’s benign influence will temper the drag of Corbyn’s unpopularity. Westminster hegemony is diluted by English devolution to cities and regions where party loyalties often count for less. Even Blair in 1997 with 418 MPs did not get it all his own way: a big majority may mean backbenchers feel they can rebel without causing an existential risk to their party. Brexit creates additional bear traps and capacity constraints for government. Even if there is a Tory landslide, to make Brexit a success, the government will need support from allies and foes alike.