A little over a month ago Theresa May announced that there would be a snap general election held on June 8th. If you’d asked anyone then what Labour’s chances of winning that election were the answer would have been “next to no chance at all”. Some may still hold that view but things have changed greatly between then and now.
Labour was polling in the low-20s when the election was called with the Tories somewhere in the mid to late-40s. In that time (in fact, in the last week) the Tories’ lead has been halved. They’re scraping the low- to mid-40s now, with Labour closing fast somewhere around the mid-30s. Today, polling shows that, in Wales, Labour are ten points ahead of the Tories, who just two weeks ago were in lead. The tide is turning and it’s not all to do with the excellent policies and dedicated activists Labour have under their belt.
When the Conservative manifesto was published just five days ago it contained a Social Care policy proposal that was so universally disagreeable, so fundamentally toxic, that even some Tory MPs distanced themselves from it. Today, less than a week later, Theresa May went on TV and had a breakdown, rolling back on the policy details. The cap on care costs that was rejected on live TV by Work and Pensions Secretary Damian Green and Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt as being “unfair and unnecessary”. Today that cap has been pencilled into the margins of the manifesto.
Theresa May’s dreadful performance, on both the podium of her own press conference and her interview with Andrew Neil, proved definitively that she is less Strong and Stable and more Weak and Wobbly. “Nothing has changed!!” she yelled, but that’s not true. And the lies just keep on coming. The Conservatives’ Twitter account claimed that a Labour government would raise the income tax rate to 25p for working families – a blatant untruth. Why are they lying? Because they’re losing.
I fully expect the poll surge Labour are seeing continue. I fully expect to see Theresa May’s personal approval ratings plummet. Can Labour win this election? If we continue to put pressure on the Tories, calling out their lies and revealing their cruelty, and I think it can. It still won’t be easy, but it is doable. Things feel as though they’re changing. I’m feeling hopeful. Even if Labour do not win the election, I think it’s going to be much, much closer than the Tories think.
I’ve been wrong in the past and there’s a while to go yet. But I’m out there every day, fighting for my party. Please also do what you can – spread the word about Labour’s policies and have as many conversations as you can with anyone you can. We can do this. We really can.