DALE Iain Krieg illustration square

Iain Dale is Presenter of LBC Drive, Managing Director of Biteback Publications, a columnist and broadcaster and a former Conservative Parliamentary candidate.

A couple of left-wing friends are still grieving at the election result. It’s really affected them in a bad way. I keep saying they should move on and get over it, but the truth is that their reaction displays, I think, a certain arrogance which is more prevalent on the Left than the Right.

They really believe that voters are stupid, and were in some way hoodwinked to vote Conservative rather than “do the right thing” and put Labour into power. They truly think that they know better than the electorate. That in essence is one very big reason why Labour lost. And I see no sign of them learning that lesson.

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ComRes is the first polling company to change their methodology following the pollsters lamentable performance during the election. They’re calling it the “Turnout method” – claiming that “the model simulates the likelihood of each respondent to vote based on their age and social grade. This has been calculated using actual General Election turnout data on a constituency level and matches it with the known age and social grade profiles of the constituencies taken from the Census.  This will provide a more accurate reflection of the actual voting public.” I think the word “will” should be changed to “might”.

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Ben Harris-Quinney. Toast.

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Paul Goodman wrote a piece yesterday on this site suggesting that Zac Goldsmith would be a great candidate for the London mayoralty. As ever, he is right. Or “Totes on the money” as a young person might say. Zac has the sort of cross party appeal needed to win this election and he scares the s**t out of Labour in a way that virtually no other Tory candidate would. Even Jenny Jones has said that she believes a lot of Greens would vote for him.

If you look at the way in which he has built up a majority of over 23,000 in Richmond Park, a Liberal Democrat seat from 1997 to 2010, it’s clear he has what it takes to take huge swathes of votes away from Labour in a mayoral election. He has the charisma, name recognition and independence of mind to be a very viable candidate to take them on in an election which ought to be theirs for the taking.

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I’m delighted to see Paul Abbott appointed as Director of Conservative Way Forward. I was a founding member of CWF back in 1991 – I think I still have the initial membership card with the number 18 on it somewhere. And no, I won’t be putting it on eBay.

CWF, like many Tory pressure groups, has flickered like a lightbulb over the years. Initially its star shone very brightly, but it then went through some difficult years and seemed to lose its way. In recent years, however, first under Don Porter and now Donal Blaney it seems to have recovered its mojo. I wish Paul luck in taking it to the next level.

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Three weeks ago, on the day after the election, I interviewed Jeremy Corbyn and found myself urging him to stand for the Labour leadership. It’s taken him that time to make a decision, but he’s now officially announced his candidacy. I feel I have unwittingly done the Conservative Party a great service! Arise, Sir Iain. (Surely only a matter of time).

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If it hadn’t been for Charles Kennedy I often wonder whether my old blog would have taken off in the way that it did. Back in 2005 I got to hear that the LibDem Parliamentary Party was in open revolt, and that a meeting had been planned with the intention of ousting their leader.

I wrote it up on my blog as an exclusive, and overnight the traffic went from very little to tens of thousands. I had arrived, and over the next five years the blog became hugely popular – at times even overtaking Guido Fawkes – and without it I wouldn’t have got my current job on LBC.

So I have every reason to be very grateful to Charles. I don’t pretend to have known him well, but we were certainly acquainted. He attended book launches at my bookshop, Politicos, and was invariably the life and soul of the party.

He was also great company. “Ah, Mr Dale, what scurrilous things are you writing about me today?” he’d greet me with, with a larger than life twinkle in his eye. He was rarely without a smile, even in times of great personal adversity. It was his greatest asset, and it enabled him to connect with the public in a way few politicians could – or can. He really is going to be missed by people across the political landscape.

63 comments for: Iain Dale: The Left thinks the voters are stupid. No wonder Labour lost.

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