Lockdown 2.0 — the political fallout.
We’re experiencing a churn of public opinion that could swing a number of ways.
Labour should be streaming ahead now; and in the last few polls taken they had a lead. Right now if an election were held the average has Labour eating into the Tories enough to almost certainly form a minority govt and lock Johnson and co from No 10. That’s a positive shift, but it is by no means stable. These calamity this government is prevailing over should see Labour (unironically) steaming ahead by 20 points or more, but the Corbyn saga is going to put a drag back on Labour’s numbers and tank public perception. However, the typical red wall voter widely approves of Corbyn’s suspension, so it could act as a brief political boost, albeit temporarily before the deep problems with unity drag the numbers down yet further.
The big hope for the govt is to restore that spirit of national unity and putting aside differences to “rally around the flag”. People support the measures and could well go back to giving those in power a vote of confidence as they tackle the pandemic and draconian measures are imposed once more upon the populace. People however, are furious; therefore the hopes of such a rosy outlook, while probable, are looking less likely by the minute. To avoid terminal damage the govt really needs to get this under control and be seen to be almost flawless in its response from here on in if it wants to salvage its poll lead.
Labour now has an arrow in its quiver; it needs to be seen to be cooperating with the govt, but it also need to stick the boot in, because this is a catastrophic failing of leadership and if there ever was a time to criticise and explain, its now. Without substance, they’ll be dismissed as opportunists however. We need bold propositions such as ZERO COVID and an alternative road map; building off the success of proposing a circuit-breaker, as opposed to just “this is welcome, do it better”, a strategy well past its sell by date. Labour have been emboldened and proven right on a circuit breaker and they’ve been handed a golden opportunity to offer leadership and show Johnson and his colleges up for the incompetent buffoons they are; that means unity and to quote the previous leader no more “factional manoeuvring at this time”.