In the UK, the liberal-democrats fail to break through

Liberal Democratic leader Jo Swinson faces journalist Andrew Marr in appearance on BBC political show "The Andrew Marr Show" on November 24, 2019. JEFF OVERS / AFP

This is one of the paradoxes of this British election campaign. The Liberals-Democrats (LibDem) remain stuck in the second division, far behind the conservatives Boris Johnson, who race in the lead (43% of voting intentions) and Labor (30%). The party has slipped, according to polls, more than 20% of voting intentions in early November to just 15% today. Fifteen days before the legislative elections scheduled for December 12, the trend seems more and more difficult to reverse.

At the beginning of the campaign, the party staff was very confident

Yet it is the only party in the national political landscape that claims to be 100% pro-European. And conservatives like the Laborists having radicalized – the first by phagocyting the Brexit Party, the second by confirming their turn left all – the LibDem should have been able to make a nice place in the center. At the beginning of the campaign, the party staff was very confident, driven by the increasing number of defections of conservative MPs for their benefit.

With hindsight, two strategic choices are rather unfortunate. Jo Swinson, the 39-year-old leader of the party, chose to campaign not only for a second referendum on Brexit, but also for the revocation of Article 50 (the outright cancellation of divorce with the European Union). This choice was made mid-September, just before the annual Labor Congress, and was intended to erect the Liberal Party in "Only pro-remain party" from the country.

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Embarrassed answers on the BBC set

But this course of action clearly does not pass; neither in the brexiters, nor even in some of the remainers. To pretend that the 17.4 million votes in favor of leaving the European Union in the 2016 referendum had no value? It would be a true denial of democracy, denounced the opponents of the LibDem.

Mme Swinson has claimed his ambition to become prime minister

At the beginning of the campaign, Mme Swinson also claimed his ambition to become prime minister, but his statements were deemed unconvincing. In order to get into Downing Street, the Liberal Democrats would have to go from twenty to at least three hundred and twenty seats in the House of Commons, which seems unlikely in the polls. They are reputed to be unreliable in the UK, but from there to miss a liberal tsunami …

The party's patron, who is in southwestern Scotland, her native region, was eager to participate in her first major campaign debate on Friday, November 22, on the BBC to a panel of about 50 citizens supposed to be representative of the national electorate. She had a very bad time, chaining the embarrassed answers to difficult questions.

From now on, the tone is realistic. Sunday, Mme Swinson acknowledged that"As is Boris Johnson left to win a majority". On Monday, November 25, Chuka Umunna, former Labor MP and rising star of the party, said the Liberal Democrats' priority was "At least to prevent a conservative majority".


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