On April 18th, the Prime Minister of the UK, Theresa May, announced her intention to dissolve parliament and call an early general election, in order to strengthen her party’s 5-seat majority in the House of Commons ahead of the upcoming Brexit talks. The election is scheduled to be held on the 8th of June.
Currently, polling averages for the major parties are as follows:
Overall, the Conservatives have benefited from their high approval ratings, and look to capture a large share of the vote in June this year. According to various polls, a majority of Britons would prefer Theresa May as Prime Minister, which is why she called this election in order to bolster her majority. However, in recent times her lead has slipped by quite a significant amount largely owing to her non-presence during debates and the recent terror attacks on Britain – a concern to her party. Thus, it may be that the Conservatives have a chance of losing ground this election, which will be a huge blow to the Prime Minister.
The Labor party has actually gained slightly, and are actually polling higher than their result in the 2015 election, which may disprove fears that their leader, Jeremy Corbyn, may not be able to gain widespread broad popular support. Although the Liberal Democrats have gained slightly in the popular vote, chances are that strategic voting and a desire for a strong majority will shrink their vote share.
All other smaller parties have seen their share of the vote shrink. Both regional parties, the SNP and Plaid Cymru, have seen their vote share shrink slightly. The Green party has weakened slightly, but looks to retain control over its one seat. However, the biggest collapse of support has been for UKIP, which will only run about half its usual candidates. This is largely due to the fact that its key policy objective, departure from the EU, has already been achieved.
Polling Averages for the major parties have remained largely stable, with the exception of a slight rise in Labor’s fortunes and a diminished vote share of the UKIP. This is largely in line with what Theresa May had hoped for this election – a stable and high level of support for the Conservatives. The large gap in support between the Conservatives and other parties means that the vote is almost guaranteed to lead to a Conservative majority.
By inputting these values into the forecast model, and running 5,000 simulated elections, the median seat count of all generated elections is as follows:
Clearly, the Conservative Party’s gain in polls has vastly benefited them, and they look to be likely to win in June. Despite this, their gap in the polls have narrowed – in almost a thirdof all simulated elections, they result in a minority government rather than the strengthened majority that Theresa May hoped for. This means that the election will not be the walkover that Theresa May expected – expect a difficult and varied race, especially given the volatility of British polling.
The spreadsheet shows the estimate seat projection and losses by each party, including the 10th, 25th, 50th, 75th and 90th percentile of seat forecasts. The Conservatives seem likely to gain seats in almost all cases, and most other parties seem likely to lose in almost all.