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Tories must hang together, or hang separately

With all of the recent campaign chat being about D-Day, we thought we’d look a little bit further back - to Dunkirk - to frame this campaign update. 

TL;DR: the Tories are going to lose, the question is whether they’ll live to fight another day. The Conservatives need to summon the spirit of Dunkirk, not continue to frag themselves with friendly fire. To borrow from Benjamin Franklin, the Conservatives are going to have to hang together, or they will be hung separately. 

Tory attention should remain on Labour, not Reform UK

Nigel Farage is back! He’s gobbling up media coverage and being coated with milkshakes! But he’s ultimately still nothing more than the facilitator of Keir Starmer’s dreams. And Labour’s power. The simple fact is, the better Reform UK does, the stronger Starmer and his government will be. This is the message the Tories have been trying to knock into people’s heads for days and it’s the message they should keep drilling into people’s heads until July 4. Sure, policies are important, but they’re complicated to communicate (see: next item). Vote Reform, get (more) Starmer is simple. And it happens to be true. 

It’s manifesto week! So what!!!!

It’s hard to think of a document that is more ill-suited to our modern information economy - one mediated by algorithmic social media - than a campaign manifesto. Manifestos are long. They’re complicated. They talk about big ideas. At least, they used to. None of that translates well to social media, which is emotive, bite-sized, and fast-paced. What social media can do, however, is maximise your downside risk: every tiny error or ill-thought out policy is guaranteed to be excised and aired. Manifestoes used to be game changers; now they’re just another drop in the hurricane of user-generated content. 

Keeping making Starmer the focus

Rishi Sunak’s many errors, including D-Day, have served as cover for Keir Starmer’s weaknesses. Labour is still a runaway train, but Starmer still had a bad debate against Sunak. Which came on the back of a week-long fumble on Diane Abbott. Nor are Labour’s policy pledges landing with any particular impact (see: above item). As the MRP numbers keep totting up stonking projected Labour majorities, voters are going to begin asking more questions about Keir Starmer and Labour. We simply don’t know a lot about what Labour would do (other than not be the raging bin fire that is the current government).  

No more (self-inflicted) errors

All that said, the undecideds aren’t going to ignore Farage or take a closer look at Starmer if the Tories keep shooting themselves in the foot. The Conservative campaign is going to have to find a few new gears and stay out of the ditch over the coming three weeks. And….nobody in their right mind thinks that’s going to happen, so poor have the first three weeks been. But again, the Tories can either hang together, or hang separately. And nothing concentrates the mind like the prospect of a hanging.

We’ll be back in your inboxes with more campaign analysis over the coming weeks. If you have any questions about the coming campaign, don’t hesitate to get into contact.


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