Referendum – 19 days to go
If you are not registered to vote – you must register by 7th June 2016
FT Poll Tracker: Remain 46% – Leave 43% = Don’t Know 11%
William Hill Odds: Remain: 2/7 Leave: 13/5 – Scotland Vote Leave: 10/1
Financial Information about Brexit
The Financial Times newspaper is available on line but the site requires quite a hefty subscription. People who wish to access reliable material on Brexit financial issues before voting may be pleased to know that the Financial Times is offering 4 weeks of on-line access for just £1 – One Pound . Click Here for more information.
In contrast to the FT Tracker (see above), the BBC Poll Tracker has Remain and Leave both declining at 41% each and the Undecided rising at 13% while on 1st June YouGov had figures of Remain 41%, Leave 41%, Undecided or Won’t vote 17%. YouGov pointed out that these figures were exactly the same as a week ago. Both poll results and poll trackers will vary because of differing methodologies but it may also mean that many voters have not yet made up their minds or are changing their minds as the campaign continues.
Who are the Campaigns Targeting?
The FT has an interesting article about the voters who are being targeted by the two campaigns. It is well worth reading:
The article discusses the factors which affect the way someone is likely to vote in the Referendum and explains:
“At the heart of the contest is a struggle for Conservative-leaning voters with rallying cries that traditionally appeal to centre-right voters, notably immigration and the economy.”
A significant part of this “centre right” are the poorer, older, less well educated, Sun/Mail/Express readers who were once Labour supporters but who became Conservative voters in the Thatcher years. Some few of them have moved even further to the right and are now UKIP supporters. People who are “Conservative voters” are not necessarily “Conservative Party Members”, a sizeable number will be those who “float” between parties depending on the policy arguments.
The Blair Legacy – Points Based Immigration
My personal view is that the real villain of the piece in terms of public unhappiness with EU migration is Tony Blair. In 2004, when the Eastern European countries, such as Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic joined the EU, Blair for some reason decided against imposing transitional controls on freedom of movement for these new EU citizens. Germany on the other hand opted for transitional controls .
The Blair Government predicted that enlargement would see 13,000 people a year coming to Britain. In fact, the numbers ended up nearer 170,000 a year.
However, see this FT Editorial: “Brexit is too high a price to pay over migration – Britain can manage the inflow of EU migrants by investing more”.
Worse still, the Vote Leave proposal of an Aussie-style Points Based Immigration for EU citizens puts the possibility of Brexit being succeeded by an EEA (or “Norwegian”) free trade solution beyond the pale. Various EU leaders have taken that assertion badly – see Four EU Leaders warn UK of exit downsides.
JP Morgan Chase had just announced that they will move 4000 jobs from London to within the EU in the event of Brexit – others will doubtless follow.
The Conservative Party Divide
We should not forget that this referendum is in reality taking place to resolve a split in the Conservative Party. On the one side there are the “One Nation Tories”, the heirs of Disraeli, who included Churchill, Macmillan, Heath, Thatcher, John Major and now David Cameron and a majority of the Conservative Members presently in the House of Commons.
On the other side, there the “Nasty Party” heirs of Enoch Powell, the friends of Nigel Farage, some former leaders of the Conservative Party who were not up to the job (Michael Howard & Inn Duncan Smith), and some Eurosceptic loons who have fallen for the very questionable economic theories of Professor Patrick Minford and others at Economists for Brexit. But see the critique of Minford’s work by the Centre for Economic Performance at the LSE which essentially conclude that Minford’s work is wrong because it is based on out of date modelling.
While we can at least assume that Nigel Farrage will not become Prime Minister this year (hopefully never), it is more than likely that shortly after the Referendum and whichever way it goes, there will be a move to oust David Cameron and replace him with Michael Gove or Boris Johnson. In that regard it is worrying that the Conservative Home blog polling of Tory activists seem to favour the Poison Dwarf for the job.
IF YOU VOTE BREXIT, YOU MAY GET GOVE
AND SERIOUSLY DAMAGE YOUR WEALTH