The Final Countdown: UKIP Election Night Coverage
Less than week to go until polling day. This election looked like it was a forgone conclusion. It looked like it was going to be less an election and more a coronation and now it looks like anything but that – the Conservative campaign has imploded more spectacularly than anyone could have possibly predicted.
Far from being the next Margaret Thatcher, Theresa May could be the next Edward Heath. In February 1974, ironically just as Britain had joined the then European Community, Mr Heath’s Conservative Party were the incumbent and led in almost every opinion poll by as much as 9% at one point and by as much as 3% on the day but despite winning the popular vote they did not win the most seats. Labour, led by a socialist firebrand, Harold Wilson made enough of an inroad to produce a hung Parliament with the election of October later that year yielding a slender Labour majority.
Could history be repeating itself? Rod Liddell in The Spectator is surely right to point out that this is the worst Conservative campaign since the Mr Heath’s electoral omnishambles. However, I can’t help but remember that long-sighted Conservatives who know their history will also remember that 5 years after Wilson came Thatcher and I have to be brutally honest and say – there is a question in my mind as to where the balance is between cock-up and conspiracy in this tale.
Since, the Manchester & London Bridge terror attacks, the big issue of the campaign has rapidly moved away from Brexit and towards security and terror. This is an issue that typically favours the right and, more specifically, UKIP – but will this translate into votes?
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We have to remember that the Conservative Party is overwhelmingly pro-Remain and seeing Mr Corbyn make a complete hash brown of Brexit, therefore discrediting the entire idea, would be, for these people, a good thing and something they might be willing to accept 5 years out of power for; the second point follows the first, we were wrong to place our trust and confidence in the Conservative Party to deliver Brexit.
As for UKIP, well, let’s be honest, vote share is virtually guaranteed to decline BUT hope springs eternal that on a unpredictable night we could spring a few surprises of our own. Strong campaigns in the likes of Thurrock, Dudley North, Hartlepool and Clacton, to provide a far from exhaustive but potentially enticing list, do point to the possibility of a night of purple joy.
One thing is guaranteed, this election is not going to be the procession it threatened to be. We will certainly have plenty to talk about and this is why we’ll be be hosting a live feed on the blog for everyone who is staying up all night to follow the twists and turns to come and see the news from the UKIP point of view. We will be online from 9:30pm to cover all the build up through to the 10pm exit poll release which may, or may not, give us a clearer steer as to where we are headed, right until all of the results are in! So, if you are at a count or just at home watching the results come in please do come and join us and digest the results and try to combat the malign effects of sleep deprivation all in the cause of the greater good of riding the rollercoaster of electoral politics to its very end.
If you want live coverage of all of the latest news from a UKIP perspective, highlighting the performance of UKIP candidates across the country, you know where to go!
Hope to see you there!