Take a plus one to vote on June 8 and you could help see off Bo-Jo.
It’s Friday afternoon, and you probably don’t want to hear about the election any more, but bear with me because I’ve just been doing lots of maths and discovered that five of Theresa May’s best buds could be at serious risk of losing their jobs if enough people in their constituencies aged between 18-34 vote for the first time in this election. Let’s back up first, and I’ll explain how.
In the 2015 election, around 2/5 (43%) of people aged 18-24 voted. Just over half (54%) of people aged 25-34 voted. That’s not a lot, really, is it, compared to the 78% of pensioners who voted. There are more of them, and almost half of them (47%) voted Tory. It’s like we don’t stand a chance.
Except we bloody do! If all the 18-34s who voted in the last election drag along a non-voting friend with them this time and, er, force them to exercise their democratic rights, there’s no way of telling the upsets we could cause. A Tory landslide is still looking likely according to the polls – they’re 18 points ahead of Labour right now – but if every 18- to 34-year-old brings a voting virgin to the ballot boxes on June 8, there’d be at least five million more voters, who could really do some damage – because about 7/10 of them wouldn’t vote Tory.
So, to the matter at hand…
How can untapped voters unseat five Tory cabinet members in the 2017 election?
For the sake of clarity, we’re gonna call 18- to 34-year-olds ‘young people’ here. What follows are some phases of maths-doing related to young people’s voting habits.
1. Using some census data from 2011 and some voting stats from 2015’s election, we did some maths to work out how many young people would have voted in each constituency.
2. We used that figure to work out how many young people didn’t vote in each constituency.
3. Then we compared that figure with the (small) Tory majorities in five constituencies led by members of Theresa May’s cabinet. Guess which figure was bigger.
It turns out the ‘untapped’ young voters we’re so excited about could unseat every one of them, if they 1. Register to vote 2. Vote on the June 8 for the Tories’ closest competitors.
Let’s look at an example. If the 15,443 young people who didn’t vote in Uxbridge & South Ruislip last time decide to come out and vote for the opponents of Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, on June 9 we could overwhelm his weensy majority of 10,695, and put an end to his campaign for Britain’s ritual humiliation on the global stage.
Or, if the 10,712 young non-voters in Amber Rudd’s Hastings & Rye constituency decide to pull their fingers out, make their way to the polling station on June 8 and vote for her closest competitor, they could topple her majority of 4,796, leaving Theresa May red-faced, and without a Home Secretary.
See how the numbers stack up below, with more figures for Welsh secretary Alun Cairns, financial secretary to the Treasury Jane Ellison and education secretary Justine Greening:
If you haven’t registered to vote yet, then you need to do that before May 22. If you don’t register and don’t vote, it’s like you want to spend the next five years in a sad swirl of regret and shame. And nobody wants that. Head to gov.uk/registertovote to get started.
Do it now!