Today is not Brexit Day, due to what Boris Johnson would describe as more dithering by Parliament and the Labour party, and what his opponents in the commons would describe as his headlong rush to get Brexit done on an unreasonable timetable and avoid proper scrutiny.
Regardless of who’s fault missing the promised Brexit Date is, we are now heading to a General Election on the 12th of December and the country gets to make a choice on who they want to take the country forward.
Jeremy Corbyn will try to move the conversation to non-Brexit issues, for many a blessed relief, but his popularity is low and the Labour Party with a confused Brexit position could bleed remain supporters to the Lib Dems and, almost unthinkable a few years ago, traditional leave Labour supporters could even vote Conservative.
Boris Johnson will be attacked for failing his “do or die in a ditch” Brexit deadline of today. It remains to be seen if votors forgive and blame yet another delay on Parliament and if the Conservatives also lose seats to the Lib Dems due to votors who wish to remain in the EU. Currently Boris appears to have annexed the Brexit Party, but they too could make a come back if the Conservative campaign doesn’t go well.
Polls are a dangerous thing to trust, polls in recent elections and referendums have been way off the mark but currently they’re putting the Conservatives in with a healthy lead.
|CON: 36% (-)
LAB: 21% (-2)
LDEM: 18% (-)
BREX: 13% (+1)
GRN: 6% (-)
|CON: 34% (+2)
LAB: 26% (+2)
LDEM: 19% (-2)
BREX: 12% (-1)
GRN: 1% (-1)
Whilst the Conservatives are currently ahead in the polls, it wouldn’t take much of a swing for the country to return another hung Parliament. It’s also not entirely outside the realms of possibility that the Lib Dems could steal enough seats to become the official opposition. With their very clear message of cancelling Article 50 on their first day on office they could appeal to votors from both the right and the left.
With around 60 MPs standing down at this election, some constituents will also have less clear choices with all candidates being unknowns, although some may have previously stood and lost.
The challenge for all parties will be to separate their Brexit Day message from their other campaign commitments. Conservatives will be clearly leave as soon as possible with Lid Dems occupying the opposite position of cancel Brexit and remain. Labour are still putting out confused message of negotiating a better deal, probably with a customs union, and then probably holding a referendum and campaigning against their own deal in favour of remaining. It’s fair to ask how voters can balance voting for a party that is aligned with the Brexit or no Brexit preference whilst at the same time considering other issues such as the NHS, housing, schools, police and generally running the country… which is high time politicians got back to doing.
If you’ve already decided how you will be voting then you’re probably well ahead of most of the country. If you’d like to take a guess at the result of the General Election, let us know in comments below.
One thing is certain, if the Conservatives win a majority we’ll be leaving imminently with the deal Boris negotiated and a new Brexit Day date will be set, possibly seeing us out of the EU on New Year’s Day rather than the 31st of January.
The Boris deal will impact every online trader as, even if currently you only ship domestically, there will be customs paperwork required for many products destined for Northern Ireland. We are holding a Brexit Webinar with shipping experts GFS on the 20th of November, so make sure you attend to get a full update on how Brexit will affect you and what you need to know for trading internationally with the rest of the world in 2020.