Tories battle for youth vote

In what may be a belated bid to wrest Britain's young voters away from the embrace of Jeremy Corbyn, the Tories are working on a plan to slash student loan rates.

Tuesday, 12th September 2017, 9:26 am
Updated Tuesday, 12th September 2017, 10:30 am

But is it all too late? For years, the major parties have done little to exploit the youth vote, regarding it as a waste of time, effort and money since young people have a history of using their votes exceedingly sparsely.

Better, both parties said, to concentrate their campaigning on elderly voters who regularly traipse along to the polling stations in great numbers.

However, Jeremy Corbyn demonstrated, during his impressive election campaign last spring, that the young voters can be persuaded to vote in large numbers. It was that factor which gave Labour a much better outcome than most expected.

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The Tories’ student loan plan may help them, but their problem is young voters probably regard it as a mere cynical ploy to get them to change their minds. And most young voters are far more likely to support Labour than the Tories, even if they change their minds as they grow older.

So Theresa May and her colleagues have an enormous struggle if they are to succeed in getting the support of young people who, even at this early stage, are already seen as a crucial factor in the result of the next election.

- “Geoffrey Boycott has still got my Tupperware”– This claim by the Prime Minister must rank as the Quotation of the Year so far. It refers to the occasion when she gave the former England batsman, pictured, some home-made brownies.

May, a cricket fan, is a particular admirer of Boycott, even though he seemed to stir up a lot of dissent in the Yorkshire dressing room when he was captain of the county.

Ironically, the Prime Minister is experiencing the same kind of problem over Brexit among some of her own Tory colleagues in the Commons.

Perhaps Boycott, when he returns the Tupperware, can advise her on how to sort it all out.