Lib Dems’ favourite election experts predict massive win in Southport for…the Tories

20th November 2019
Vote being cast at a polling station

Veteran Southport journalist Martin Hovden writes: Southport Liberal Democrat attempts to spin success for themselves in next month’s general election have come crashing down to earth.

In their latest Focus election leaflet – being delivered this week door-to-door – there is a bold graph on its front page (repeated on its back page) claiming their candidate John Wright is neck and neck with Tory Damien Moore, and they dismiss Labour’s Liz Savage as having “no realistic prospect of winning in Southport”.

And to back up their claims, they reveal the predictions have come from “well-respected election experts at the Electoral Calculus website”.

The Electoral Calculus prediction is dated 2 November 2019.

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However, when you look at the same website today (20 November 2019), the prediction is for a big Conservative win in Southport with 48.7% of the vote. It also predicts Labour is on level pegging with the Lib Dems at 25%. So the overall predicted majority of the vote for the Tories is 22.8%

And even more embarrassing for local Lib Dems is their favourite election website is predicting a national Conservative majority of 72 for Boris Johnson, with Labour losing 61 seats and the Lib Dems losing one of their current 20 seats.

It also predicts the Tories have a 76% chance of winning in Southport, with Labour having a 13% chance and Lib Dems 11%.

When I reported the Electoral Calculus prediction for Southport in the 2017 general election, I said Tory Damien Moore was on course for victory. The Lib Dems immediately rubbished the website and its founder Martin Baxter. Conservative Mr Moore went on to win with a 2,900 majority, pushing the Lib Dems into an embarrassing third place.