tactical vote Archives - Best for Britain
Best for Britain's press

18-24 and in London tomorrow?

We hope you all enjoyed the long weekend which ended with last night’s TV Q&A with Jeremy Corbyn and Theresa May. Last night we learned that May is as keen as ever on her bogus line that ‘no deal is better than a bad deal’ and Corbyn sought to delineate his party from the Tories on Brexit by committing to keeping trading arrangements and upholding rights from the EU.

We’re gearing up for the last 9 days of the campaign and we need your help more than ever!

As always, sharing our Tactical Vote Dashboard is top of our wish-list and generally talking about tactical voting with your friends, family and work colleagues. We’ve put together a great animation on tactical voting which explains the difference it can make. If you’ve also found a good way to explain tactical voting, then let us know!

We have another favour to ask of some of you. With the promise of an extraordinary turnout, particularly of young people we want to make sure we get out their vote. Thanks to your donations amazing organisations like Bite the Ballot, Citizens UK, My Life My Say and RizeUp got over a million 18-24 year olds to register, and we have some exciting projects in the pipeline and we would love to hear from you if you are:

  • Age 18-24
  • In the London area
  • Could come to central London at 6pm tomorrow (Wednesday) evening…

If you’re up for that please write to us at info@bestforbritain.org and we will tell you more.

Thanks so much, and please keep spreading the word so we can reduce May’s majority and fight an extreme Brexit.

By Eloise Todd

[First published 30th May 2017]

Message from the Best for Britain team

Dear supporters,

The polls have just closed. For the last six weeks we’ve been working, with your support, to fight extreme Brexit. We are so grateful for your support and we’ve met so many great people on the campaign trail.

Here’s a snapshot of what we have done over the period of the campaign:

  1.  Delivered a voter registration campaign among young people and women in particular, working with fantastic partners like Bite the Ballot, Citizens UK, RizeUp and MLMS. Our campaign reached two million people.
  2. Supported 36 candidate champions with donations and other campaign support such as visits to get them media coverage.
  3. We have also supported another 100 candidates with targeted digital campaigning.
  4. Built a tactical voting dashboard (now put into retirement until the next election) to show people how to avoid extreme Brexit and limit a Tory majority.  The Dashboard has had over half a million unique users and some marginals got more visits than the size of their majority – many times over!
  5. A national digital campaign to drive tactical voting.

The top searched constituencies where we’ve made a clear call were the following which shows just how important the marginal fights will be tonight. Four out of these five are among our champions (all except Bath):

  1.     Bath
  2.     St Albans
  3.     Brighton Pavilion
  4.     Vauxhall
  5.     Maidenhead

When we started this in April, polling we commissioned from Election Data and YouGov showed a potential 188 seat majority for Theresa May. We decided we needed to dent that majority and also to fight for strong voices to oppose Brexit.

None of this would have been possible without your support, so a massive thank you from every single one of us in the extended Best for Britain family – which has become larger as we met new friends along the way.

We’ll be updating our supporters like you with email (sign up here if you haven’t yet) and on Twitter throughout election night with the latest news.

Very best wishes


Eloise and the team

This is why we need to vote tactically

This is a guest post by Mike Galsworthy of Scientists for EU

For those of us that care deeply about British science, our NHS and the environment, there’s an absolute imperative to fight the narrow vision of Britain’s future that a landslide for May would usher in. With science; the absurd immigration target combined with being ripped from our collaborative frameworks of policy, regulation, infrastructure and talent would gut UK science & tech from its fertile bedding. With the NHS, our already strained staffing and finances have become more perilous thanks to Brexit, with losses in innovative medicines and cross-border healthcare following close behind.

A looming US-UK trade deal would likely be led by healthcare companies keen to exploit NHS weaknesses and permanently lock into our national health system. With our environmental standards, the vultures of deregulation are already circling.

Democracy is about more than ticking a box within a limited set of options, then shutting up until you are allowed to tick another box, years later. Democracy is about constant education, conversation, challenge and mobilisation across society. People speaking for themselves.

Tactical vote

Since the referendum vote, with the top-down layer peeled away, many groups have continued to emerge and grow on their own terms – determined to have their say. Alongside our own Scientists for EU there are the campaigns Best for Britain, European Movement, Britain for Europe, Open Britain, and countless regional groups. Many of them care little for party politics and are openly driving the tactical vote. There’s a huge appetite to oust the most dangerous Hard Brexiteers and, absent proportional representation, attain balance by coordinated effort.

Pandora’s box

This is no Remoaner sulk; it is a drive of engagement. Brexit is the Pandora’s Box of our time. It is hard to know at this stage how the volatile landscape will unfold. Remain must be kept on the table, but only to be used as a get-out-of-jail card if the populace clearly wants it. Anything else would indeed be a betrayal.

But let us not forget that things change over time, including economics and even the EU. Macron and Merkel are now discussing previously unthinkable treaty-change. Is there a new European framework to be had?

Ultimately, the position is this; pragmatics must trump wild ideology. The breadth of the British population must have fair representation in deciding our future. We cannot trash our decades of teamwork in science, health, and environment because the tabloid press bellows intimidation. Real solutions that serve the country come from creative compromises, not from rabid ideology head-butting a brick wall. The referendum was a 48-52 divide. That’s Britain. We need a parliament to represent its healthy diversity as we tackle the complexities ahead.

That means voting tactically.

Best for Britain Tactical Vote Dashboard methodology

Best for Britain’s Tactical Voting Dashboard to stop Extreme Brexit seeks to do two things:

  • Return as many cross-party candidates as possible that will fight Extreme Brexit and fight for a real choice on the final deal
  • Limit the majority of a likely Conservative Government in order to mount the strongest possible opposition to Theresa May’s Extreme Brexit agenda

In order to deliver this, Best for Britain has put the most emphasis on winnability of the seats, having considered a combination of commissioned research, the 2015 election results, polling from the last month, the attitudes to Brexit in the constituency and – where possible – local knowledge. In most cases, the candidate that looks most likely to beat a pro-Brexit candidate according to the data, has been backed. In some cases, because of the peculiarities of the local fight, candidate that is not the ‘obvious’ choice in data terms has been backed.

For the purposes of this Tactical Voting Website, the Labour Party, the Liberal Democrats and the Green Party are considered as parties that will fight Extreme Brexit. Which of these parties is most likely to win or be the closest contender for a seat is our default setting for our recommendation. These parties have different policies on Brexit, all have clearly expressed their willingness to fight Extreme Brexit and all have expressed their support for rejecting any deal that does not deliver the exact same benefits for the UK as membership. We believe that a majority of the candidates from these parties want to keep the door open to staying in if the deal is not in the national interest. For those seats in which there are Labour candidates who have been particularly vocal about leaving the EU, we recommend ‘voting your preference’, except in those cases in which we think a candidate has a credible chance of contesting the seat.

The Conservative Party and UKIP are considered as parties in support of Extreme Brexit due to their manifestos, so there are no direct recommendations for them. There are however, many Conservative candidates that we believe, though currently bound by the Conservative Manifesto, will speak up in Parliament against Extreme Brexit. We have indicated that voters should ‘vote their preference’ in these seats, except in some of the cases in which a strong Liberal Democrat has a chance of winning. We have not included Conservatives that are part of the government.

Our website focuses on England and Wales. We have not made calls in Scotland and Northern Ireland. The information supplied on the website from the 2015 election and polling should help voters make their decision.

We reserve the right to change our calls, according to any new information we receive from local knowledge and also from our digital outreach to candidates in the coming week. We also reserve the right to change calls to reflect any changes that may be needed in response to national and regional polling. We will update the list at least twice before 8 June.

The nature of creating a website for 573 constituencies means that we have taken a view based on the parties the candidates belong to. We are, however, committed to backing individual candidates that share our views. For any feedback on the website or the calls made, please write to Best for Britain at info@bestforbritain.org

Categories for calls

VOTE YOUR PREFERENCE     Conservative incumbents who are pro-Remain and Labour incumbents who are pro-Leave fall under this category

TO BE DETERMINED        We will make a call closer the elections

Party positions

The Labour position set out by Keir Starmer on 27 March: “Let me be clear: Labour will not support a deal that fails to reflect core British values and the six tests I have set out today.” The Labour manifesto supports a meaningful vote on the final deal.

The Liberal Democrat position in their manifesto is to give “the final say to the British people in a referendum on whether to accept the deal or remain in the EU” which would need a meaningful vote on the final deal in Parliament.

The Green party position in their manifesto is also a referendum on the final deal for Brexit.