Identity politics are a risky strategy for both Labour and the Tories


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The writer is professor of politics at Queen Mary University of London

Corbynites soundly squashed. New policies floated. And voters encouraged to take another look at the party leader. Labour’s annual conference in Brighton finished on a high. So should the Conservatives be worried as they get together this weekend in Manchester? Probably not. But there’s no room for complacency.

To be brutally honest, whatever it does between now and then, Labour has probably already lost the next general election — primarily because it lost the last one so very badly.

Admittedly, Keir Starmer can take some hope from the fact that voters these days are fairly footloose: somewhere between a quarter and a third of people switched parties between each election in 2015, 2017, and 2019. Fewer than 20 per cent think of…

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