Portillo predicts hung Parliament

It was a sea of black tie attire at the Hilton Park Lane last night for the annual BVRLA dinner. That’s the British Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association – if you’re not familiar.

As is the way with this kind of ‘do’ it was pretty much your usual affair – pre-dinner drinks, some chat about the industry concerned, a few awards and an after dinner turn. On the last point; a very funny Frankie Boyle.

However, the BVRLA also added an extra speaker Michael Portillo – a former future prime minister, as he describes himself.

His insight on the nearly announced General Election and talked about the numbers behind elections.

For David Cameron to win with a majority would take a 7% swing in voting. While this doesn’t sound like much, in political terms it’s vast. In recent history only Tony Blair has achieved such a swing.

For this reason, Portillo, an ex-Tory minister, predicted a hung Parliament as it would only take a much smaller swing – less than 3% to give David Cameron the largest share of the vote.

At this point the smaller parties hold the power.

Portillo’s point was that the LibDems, with their proportional representation policy, couldn’t morally back Labour with a smaller share of the vote than the Conservatives so would back Cameron.

The question Portillo left the audience with was what demands would the LibDems make. If it was the introduction of proportional representation or appointing Vince Cable as Chancellor, then Cameron would think it a price too high. So would Cameron then lead with a minority Government?

With predictions of Gordon Brown dissolving Parliament just after Easter, we shouldn’t have long to wait.

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2 comments on “Portillo predicts hung Parliament
  1. Highwaylass says:

    Did Portillo’s 7% take into account that it takes a lot more votes to elect a Tory MP than a Labour one? Owing to inconsistencies in the size of constituencies (smaller urban seats c/w large rural ones), the Tories have an uphill struggle just to reach parity.

    PS – Portillo and Frankie Boyle – that would be a double act I’d pay to see..

  2. Tristan says:

    I think that was his point.

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