A Pact on Paper: The Pro-Brexit Alliance

In my study, I am including 164 Labour Leave constituencies. Labour held these seats on the eve of the referendum or gained in the 2017 general election. The Tories are not surprisingly going to challenge them in a hypothetical election.

To work out what seats the Tories should stand down in to allow the Brexit Party to run against Labour, I believe this is the formula to follow.

1.    If UKIP finished above the Tories in 2015, then Farage is more likeable among those constituents than the Conservatives. I calculated this at around 51 seats, 44 of which UKIP finished runner-up in, other runners-up were Plaid and even the Lib Dems.

1.    Kingston upon Hull East,

2.    Doncaster North,

3.    Barnsley East,

4.    Dagenham and Rainham,

5.    Hartlepool,

6.    Normanton, Pontefract and Castleford,

7.    West Bromwich West,

8.    Wentworth and Dearne,

9.    Rotherham,

10.    Barnsley Central,

11.    Kingston upon Hull West and Hessle,

12.    West Bromwich East,

13.    Redcar,

14.    Rother Valley,

15.    Burnley,

16.    Sheffield South East,

17.    Doncaster Central,

18.    Middlesbrough,

19.    Stoke on Trent Central,

20.    Makerfield,

21.    Bolton South East,

22.    Houghton and Sunderland South,

23.    Heywood and Middleton,

24.    South Shields,

25.    Oldham West and Royton,

26.    Swansea East,

27.    Blaenau Gwent,

28.    Washington and Sunderland West,

29.    Jarrow,

30.    Sheffield Brightside and Hillsborough,

31.    Rhondda,

32.    Barking,

33.    Birmingham Yardley,

34.    Kingston upon Hull North,

35.    Aberavon,

36.    Blyth Valley,

37.    Ogmore,

38.    Islwyn,

39.    Merthyr Tydfil and Rhymney,

40.    Sheffield Heeley,

41.    Rochdale,

42.    Cynon Valley,

43.    Blaydon,

44.    Gateshead,

45.    Llanelli,

46.    Bootle,

47.    Neath,

48.    Liverpool Walton,

49.    Knowsley,

50.    Blackley and Broughton, and

51.    Liverpool West Derby.

2.    If the Tories are currently chasing a 10% Labour majority (from the 2017 General Election) or less, then they should challenge Corbyn. That is a retrievable lead and will include significant marginals like the Gower and Peterborough. 42 seats fall into this category.

1.    Walsall North,

2.    Stoke on Trent North,

3.    Great Grimsby,

4.    Dudley North,

5.    Mansfield,

6.    Stoke on Trent South,

7.    Ashfield,

8.    Scunthorpe,

9.    Bassetlaw,

10.    Blackpool South,

11.    Rother Valley,

12.    Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland,

13.    Wakefield,

14.    North East Derbyshire,

15.    Peterborough,

16.    Newcastle under Lyme,

17.    Penistone and Stocksbridge,

18.    Bishop Auckland,

19.    Workington,

20.    Copeland,

21.    Crewe and Nantwich,

22.    Darlington,

23.    Stockton South,

24.    Bolton North East,

25.    Lincoln,

26.    Wrexham,

27.    Dewsbury,

28.    Barrow and Furness,

29.    Ipswich,

30.    Gedling,

31.    Vale of Clwyd,

32.    Wolverhampton South West,

33.    Derby North,

34.    Bury North,

35.    Keighley,

36.    Bedford,

37.    Portsmouth South,

38.    Warrington South,

39.    High Peak,

40.    Croydon Central,

41.    Weaver Vale, and

42.    Gower.

•    If the Tories have held the seat at any point since 1997, then they will have the opportunity to contest the seat. The Conservatives would have held most of these during the Cameron years.

1.    Ilford North (2010), and

2.    Plymouth, Sutton and Devonport (2015)

•    This leaves 69 Labour Leave constituencies. To work out who would take what we first need to see how the Brexit Party performed in the EU Elections. If they managed a victory of 10% or more in a seat with a Labour majority of 10% or more, these are also winnable seats for the Brexit Party, whereas the Tories have very little chance.

1.    West Lancashire,

2.    Caerphilly,

3.    North West Durham,

4.    Wansbeck,

5.    Newcastle upon Tyne North,

6.    Alyn and Deeside,

7.    Ellesmere Port and Neston,

8.    St Helens North,

9.    Warrington North,

10.    Coventry North West,

11.    Stalybridge and Hyde,

12.    Chesterfield,

13.    Worsley and Eccles South,

14.    Sunderland Central,

15.    North Durham,

16.    Newport East,

17.    Denton and Reddish,

18.    Torfaen,

19.    Wigan,

20.    Barnsley Central,

21.    Hemsworth,

22.    Bradford South,

23.    Leigh,

24.    Bury South,

25.    Newport West,

26.    Eltham,

27.    Ynys Môn,

28.    Lancaster and Fleetwood,

29.    Delyn,

30.    Sedgefield,

31.    Clwyd South,

32.    Birmingham Northfield,

33.    Hyndburn,

34.    Wolverhampton North East,

35.    Don Valley,

36.    Chorley, and

37.    Bolsover

•    The remaining 32 seats are most likely to go to the Brexit Party. They will be far harder to win but still possible. These seats have a Labour majority of 20% or more, but the Brexit Party won them in the May Elections.

1.    Wolverhampton South East,

2.    Ashton under Lyne,

3.    Walsall South,

4.    Leeds East,

5.    Luton North,

6.    Halton,

7.    St Helens South and Whiston,

8.    Leeds West,

9.    Salford and Eccles,

10.    Huddersfield,

•    Alternatively, they have a 10 to 20% Labour majority, but Farage only won the seat with a less than 10% lead over Labour.

1.    Southampton Test,

2.    Halifax,

3.    Batley and Spen,

4.    Birmingham Erdington,

•    The remaining seats saw Labour mirror their Westminster victory in the Brussels elections. However, in seats that Labour defeated Farage by 5% or less, there is a chance of victory for the Brexit Party, especially given that Remainers were up to 10% more likely to vote, whereas Brexiteers were around 5% less likely to go to the polls.

1.    Oldham East and Saddleworth,

2.    Erith and Thamesmead,

3.    Birkenhead,

4.    Derby South,

5.    Nottingham North

•    In the remaining seats, the Brexit Party failed to run Labour close, but the Conservatives are also chasing unassailable leads of around 25% or more. While the Brexit Party have a better chance in these areas that see Conservatism as a dirty word; it would be difficult to imagine the Brexit Party prevailing over the tribalist attachment to the Labour Party.

1.    Birmingham Perry Barr,

2.    Birmingham Hodge Hill,

3.    Leicester West,

4.    Leicester East,

5.    Blackburn,

6.    Slough,

7.    Bradford East,

8.    Luton South,

9.    Feltham and Heston,

10.    Preston,

11.    Coventry North East,

12.    Hayes and Harlington,

13.    Warley

Given that all of these seats elected Conservatives in 2017, it only seems right for the Tories to be the ones to contest the seats again.

However, Hanretty’s estimates also show that four other constituencies voted to leave the EU that were in the hands-on Remainer parties on the eve of the referendum. While Banff and Buchan are estimated to be the only Scottish seat to opt for Brexit, they elected the Tories under May, and it makes complete sense for them to attempt to retain the seat in any election. The Conservatives would also be right to contest Eastbourne, a seat that they lost in 2017 and that voted decisively to leave the EU. Another seat that the Tories are only narrowly following is Tom Brake’s Carshalton and Wallington, which did to vote for Brexit. The final Conservative seat to contest is North Norfolk. Norman Lamb may have been their MP since 2001, but the Conservatives far exceeded UKIP’s expectations in 2015, and the seat has been in Tory hands before.

Despite this, Farage must challenge in Plaid Cymru’s Carmarthen East and Dinefwr. In these areas of Wales, the Tories are not popular, and despite holding off UKIP in 2015, the more professional Brexit Party stormed to victory in May. Not only defeating Labour by over 25% but fending off Plaid by 6%.

Conclusion:

Of the 632 constituencies, given that the DUP is an excellent pro-Brexit alternative in Northern Ireland, the Conservative Party should stand in the 318 that they won in 2017, including Tory Leave (6 of which are on my spreadsheet) and Tory Remain seats. Of the Labour Leave seats, the Conservatives should only contest 44; these are in seats where they have a chance of chasing down the Labour majority of 10% or less, or where the Tories have recently been victorious. The Tories must also stand in four of the five Leave-voting seats held by other Remainer parties.  This would total at 509 constituencies in all regions of Great Britain. Therefore, I would suggest the Tories standing in 364 leave voting constituencies, alongside all constituencies which voted Remain. The Brexit Party must be left to stand in 122 Labour Leave seats and the one Plaid seat in Carmarthenshire.  

1st Revision – Wednesday 11th of September 2019: https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7449969/Nigel-Farage-names-price-Brexit-Party-agree-election-pact-Tories.html

Having read the Daily Mail article this morning that shows Farage’s price for a pact is 90 seats I decided to go about finding which 90 seats they would be. Instead I have found 93. However, given that there would be negotiation over this agreement I believe it could be as low as 60. The revised version is below:

  • If the Tories are currently chasing a 10% Labour majority (from the 2017 General Election or in a by-election since) or less, then they should challenge Corbyn. That is a retrievable lead and will include significant marginals like the Gower and Peterborough. 44 seats fall into this category.

1.    Walsall North,

2.    Stoke on Trent North,

3.    Great Grimsby,

4.    Dudley North,

5.    Mansfield,

6.    Stoke on Trent South,

7.    Ashfield,

8.    Scunthorpe,

9.    Bassetlaw,

10.    Blackpool South,

11.    Rother Valley,

12.    Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland,

13.    Wakefield,

14.    North East Derbyshire,

15.    Peterborough,

16.    Newcastle under Lyme,

17.    Penistone and Stocksbridge,

18.    Bishop Auckland,

19.    Workington,

20.    Copeland,

21.    Crewe and Nantwich,

22.    Darlington,

23.    Stockton South,

24.    Bolton North East,

25.    Lincoln,

26.    Wrexham,

27.    Dewsbury,

28.    Barrow and Furness,

29.    Ipswich,

30.    Gedling,

31.    Vale of Clwyd,

32.    Wolverhampton South West,

33.    Derby North,

34.    Bury North,

35.    Keighley,

36.    Bedford,

37.    Portsmouth South,

38.    Warrington South,

39.    High Peak,

40.    Croydon Central,

41.    Weaver Vale,

42.    Gower, and

43.    Rother Valley

44.    Newport West

•    If the Tories have held the seat at any point since 1997, then they will have the opportunity to contest the seat. The Conservatives would have held most of these during the Cameron years.

1.    Ilford North (2010), and

2.    Plymouth, Sutton and Devonport (2015)

  • The Conservatives must also have access to Leave voting Labour seats outside of the north of England, Midlands and Wales.
  • Dagenham and Rainham,
  • Barking,
  • Eltham,
  • Erith and Thamesmead,
  • Feltham and Heston,
  • Hayes and Harlington,
  • Luton South,
  • Slough,

The Conservatives will also be contesting the Liberal Democrat seats that voted to Leave.

  1. Brecon and Radnorshire
  2. Eastbourne
  3. Carshalton and Wallington
  4. North Norfolk

If UKIP finished above the Tories in 2015, then Farage is more likeable among those constituents than the Conservatives. I calculated this at around 48 seats.

  1. Kingston upon Hull East,
  2. Doncaster North,
  3. Barnsley East,
  4. Hartlepool,
  5. Normanton, Pontefract and Castleford,
  6. West Bromwich West,
  7. Wentworth and Dearne,
  8. Rotherham,
  9. Barnsley Central,
  10. Kingston upon Hull West and Hessle,
  11. West Bromwich East,
  12. Redcar,
  13. Burnley,
  14. Sheffield South East,
  15. Doncaster Central,
  16. Middlesbrough,
  17. Stoke on Trent Central,
  18. Makerfield,
  19. Bolton South East,
  20. Houghton and Sunderland South,
  21. Heywood and Middleton,
  22. South Shields,
  23. Oldham West and Royton,
  24. Swansea East,
  25. Blaenau Gwent,
  26. Washington and Sunderland West,
  27. Jarrow,
  28. Sheffield Brightside and Hillsborough,
  29. Rhondda,
  30. Birmingham Yardley,
  31. Kingston upon Hull North,
  32. Aberavon,
  33. Blyth Valley,
  34. Ogmore,
  35. Islwyn,
  36. Merthyr Tydfil and Rhymney,
  37. Sheffield Heeley,
  38. Rochdale,
  39. Cynon Valley,
  40. Blaydon,
  41. Gateshead,
  42. Llanelli,
  43. Bootle,
  44. Neath,
  45. Liverpool Walton,
  46. Knowsley,
  47. Blackley and Broughton, and
  48. Liverpool West Derby.

If the Brexit Party managed a victory of 10% or more in a seat with a Labour majority of 10% or more, these are also winnable seats for the Brexit Party, whereas the Tories have very little chance.

  1. West Lancashire,
  2. Caerphilly,
  3. North West Durham,
  4. Wansbeck,
  5. Newcastle upon Tyne North,
  6. Alyn and Deeside,
  7. Ellesmere Port and Neston,
  8. St Helens North,
  9. Warrington North,
  10. Coventry North West,
  11. Stalybridge and Hyde,
  12. Chesterfield,
  13. Worsley and Eccles South,
  14. Sunderland Central,
  15. North Durham,
  16. Newport East,
  17. Denton and Reddish,
  18. Torfaen,
  19. Wigan,
  20. Barnsley Central,
  21. Hemsworth,
  22. Bradford South,
  23. Leigh,
  24. Bury South,
  25. Ynys Môn,
  26. Lancaster and Fleetwood,
  27. Delyn,
  28. Sedgefield,
  29. Clwyd South,
  30. Birmingham Northfield,
  31. Hyndburn,
  32. Wolverhampton North East,
  33. Don Valley,
  34. Chorley, and
  35. Bolsover

•    The remaining 32 seats are most likely to go to the Brexit Party. They will be far harder to win but still possible. These seats have a Labour majority of 20% or more, but the Brexit Party won them in the May Elections.

  1. Wolverhampton South East,
  2. Ashton under Lyne,
  3. Walsall South,
  4. Leeds East,
  5. Luton North,
  6. Halton,
  7. St Helens South and Whiston,
  8. Leeds West,
  9. Salford and Eccles,
  10. Huddersfield,

•    Alternatively, they have a 10 to 20% Labour majority, but Farage only won the seat with a less than 10% lead over Labour.

  1. Southampton Test,
  2. Halifax,
  3. Batley and Spen,
  4. Birmingham Erdington,

The Brexit Party must also stand in Plaid Cymru seats that voted for the Brexit Party in the EU Elections.

  1. Carmarthen East and Dinefwr

•    The remaining seats saw Labour mirror their Westminster victory in the Brussels elections. These appear all but impossible for Farage to win and the Conservative Party could remain as the standing party there.

  1. Oldham East and Saddleworth,
  2. Birkenhead,
  3. Derby South,
  4. Nottingham North
  5. Birmingham Perry Barr,
  6. Birmingham Hodge Hill,
  7. Leicester West,
  8. Leicester East,
  9. Blackburn,
  10. Bradford East,
  11. Preston,
  12. Coventry North East,
  13. Warley

Conclusion:

Of the 632 constituencies, given that the DUP is an excellent pro-Brexit alternative in Northern Ireland, the Conservative Party should stand in a total of 539 constituencies in all regions of Great Britain, including all Leave Liberal Democrat seats. Whereas, Nigel Farage’s Brexit Party should challenge Labour and Plaid Cymru in 93 Brexit-backing constituencies.

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