Lib Dems stand aside for Green Party’s Vix Lowthion on Isle of Wight
The General Election campaign has only just started. But the Green Party’s prospects are beginning to look good. It was revealed today that the Liberal Democrats are standing aside in the Isle of Wight, in a bid to give Vix Lowthion a free run at becoming the second Green Party MP.
In an email sent to Isle of Wight party members, the previously selected Liberal Democrat candidate said his decision was informed by wanting to “maximise the remain vote”. He said:
I will not be standing in this General Election on the Island. The Liberal Democrats nationally have decided that a electoral alliance with the Greens to maximise the remain vote is the best cause of action on the Isle of Wight.
This decision will be a boost for the Green Party. In 2017, the Isle of Wight saw the second highest Green vote share – with Lowthion receiving 17.3% of the vote. The Liberal Democrats, on the other hand received just 3.7%.
The Isle of Wight is currently a Tory seat. But the Tories are at risk of having the Brexit Party eat into their vote share. In 2015, UKIP came second, with 21.2% of the vote. Should the Brexit Party poll at a similar level this time round, the seat could become a three way toss up between the Tories, the Brexit Party, and the Greens.
It isn’t just the absence of a Liberal Democrat candidate that could maximise the Greens’ potential here. The party benefits from having a well known and popular candidate in Lowthion who has transformed the Greens’ prospects. The Greens received just 931 votes in 2010. Whereas in 2017, the party won over 12,000 votes.
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