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School of Politics and International Relations

Swinson's Article 50 pledge flirts with disaster – but it could end up grabbing ‘revenge votes’ for the Lib Dems


Professor Tim Bale wrote an opinion piece in The Independent on the Lib Dems’ decision to declare that they will be revoking Article 50 if they win a majority at the next general election. ‘Clearly this policy has a lot going for it, but it also comes with dangerous downsides. Revoke is essentially a heat-seeking missile aimed at die-hard Remain voters in the constituencies, most of them Tory, that the Lib Dems have a pretty good chance of winning. If we do leave, not everyone will be chuffed to bits or simply heaving a sigh of relief. For those who aren’t, they will be angry – really angry – and they won’t be much less angry with Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party than with Boris Johnson and the Tories. At that point, “revenge voting” could become a thing – and perhaps a very big thing for Jo Swinson and the Liberal Democrats.’
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