Cheltenham is a borough constituency in the South West of England.
It has a five star target rating for Lib Dems at an upcoming General Election.
For remain-motivated voters Cheltenham offers a great chance of a remain outcome – by voting Lib Dem to defeat the Conservatives there.
There is also almost no risk that voting Lib Dem will increase the chances of an accidental leave outcome.
For voters unable to support Lib Dems on conscience, but keen to still deliver “outcomes” other than a Conservative MP, please consider the following options:
Remain-motivated voters: Neither neighbouring constituency represents a marginal seat, but Gloucester or Worcester are nearby and the local Labour candidates there support Labour’s position of holding a People’s Vote – for a non-Lib Dem remain outcome.
Labour-motivated voters: Neighbouring seats (Cotswolds and Tewkesbury) are not Labour target seats, but nearby Worcester or Gloucester need Labour campaigners to take these seats from the Conservatives.
Green-motivated voters: There are no strong Green target seats nearby so phone canvassing and other national action can help further afield.
Why Cheltenham is a Five Star Lib Dem Target
Based on our criteria (read here) the following five factors are key:
Narrowness of 2017 defeat
In 2017, Lib Dems came second to the Conservatives by 4.5% (2,569 votes).
This is well within the margin of their uplift in polls since then.
Lack of rivals
In 2017, Labour came third with 9.5%. That was 32.7% behind the second place Lib Dems.
This means a split “opposition” vote is a risk, but the lack of realistic chance of Labour winning can aid tactical voting for Lib Dems.
Remain 2016 counts
This means a pro-remain campaign will likely go down well in this pro-remain seat.
Alex Chalk MP (Conservative) recently voted in the Commons against blocking “no deal”.
Such a clear chance to cast the incumbant as a severe pro-brexit candidate is a Lib Dem advantage.
Brexit Party standing
The Brexit Party has not announced its candidate, but has not announced it will pass over Cheltenham either.
Presumption is they will stand – potentially attracting otherwise Conservative voters – but we will update when more is known.