General Election 2015: The Aftermath

With the results declared, the British General Election is over, and so it is time to see how my predictions fared against the actual facts and figures. I cannot help but think that the overall conclusion to be drawn is that the stars predicted the direction the result was going to go today – though not the precise details.

David Cameron / The Conservative Party

What I wrote:

Cameron (9th October 1966, London) has a lot of favourable influences going for him that day… The Conservatives will be the largest party in Parliament, but without an absolute majority. David Cameron will stay on as Prime Minister, this time of a minority Conservative government, not a Coalition.

What actually happened:

The Conservatives did get an absolute majority – but only just, to wit: twelve seats. However, in practical terms it’s actually sixteen seats because Sinn Fein boycott the House of Commons on principle. The prediction I made did seem to reflect the BBC’s exit poll published just as the polls closed, but not the final results! Still, we should remember that it is entirely possible that with by-elections, this majority may be wiped out and become a minority in the course of this parliament – that is exactly what happened to John Major in 1992.

Ed Milliband / The Labour Party

What I wrote:

Labour will be the second largest, but will experience a loss of seats, mostly to the SNP, but also to UKIP.

What actually happened

Labour were the second largest, and did experience a loss of seats to the SNP. However, due to a quirk in the UK’s election system, they lost a lot of seats not to UKIP, but because of UKIP. More about this anon.

Nigel Farage / UKIP

What I wrote:

…UKIP will see significant gains in the numbers of their seats… UKIP will go through a period of reform where they are forced to jettison the more extreme elements of their party.

What actually happened:

UKIP saw significant gains in their number of votes, not seats. According to a BBC poll, UKIP notched up 12.6% of the popular vote, becoming the third most popular party amongst the electorate, with only the Conservatives and Labour in front of them. However, because of the way UKIP voters are distributed throughout Britain, voting for UKIP divided support for the Labour party, allowing in many cases the Conservative candidate to get in. Had for instance, the same number of UKIP voters been concentrated in a small region instead of equally distributed across the country, the same number of votes would have translated into increased seats in parliament – but the constituency map is gerrymandered against them.

Still I was right about UKIP having to jettison the more extreme elements of their party – e.g. Nigel Farage himself! 😛

Scottish National Party

What I wrote:

[T]he SNP … will see significant gains in the numbers of their seats. The SNP will find it difficult to hold the balance of power though, as the other parties will be reluctant to work with them.

What actually happened:

The stars were generally correct about the SNP’s fortunes – also vindicating my decision to examine the horoscope of Angus Robertson, their campaign director. The SNP did see a significant gain in the number of its seats – mainly because, unlike UKIP, they are concentrated in one (demographically) small region (i.e. Scotland), where the average size of each constituency in terms of voters is smaller than the rest of the country. The system, in other words, is gerrymandered in their favour.

The SNP also failed to hold the balance of power, though for different reasons entirely – i.e. the  Conservatives winning an outright majority. However: as I said above, it is still within the realm of possibility that the Tory majority may diminish within the lifetime of the parliament, so the dynamic of power between the parties may yet change.

Natalie Bennett / The Green Party

What I wrote:

[S]he will be disappointed by the result of the election. The day will be pretty much a non-event for her… The Green Party will be neither better nor worse off after the election than before.

What actually happened:

Unfortunately, this is precisely what occurred. The Green Party held on to its one seat in Brighton, but won nothing else.

Nick Clegg / The Liberal Democrats

What I wrote:

Clegg will be the subject of much anger, also the forces of change will be proving difficult for him to make any headway… [I]t will be a good time for Clegg to be alone, and to realise his flaws and weaknesses… The Liberal Democrats in general, and Nick Clegg in particular, will collapse.

What actually happened:

I so totally called this one!!!

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