Shadow minister 'hopeful' Labour will win the next election because Conservative voters are dying off

Cat SmithChristopher Furlong / GettyCat Smith with the Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell.
  • Labour shadow minister says Tory voters are falling off of life’s “conveyor belt.”
  • Cat Smith says Labour should be “hopeful” about the next election due to the gradual expiration of Tory voters.
  • She points to polling showing older voters are more likely to vote Conservative.
  • Labour currently holds huge leads over the Tories among younger voters.

BRIGHTON — Labour should be “hopeful” about winning the next election because Conservative voters are dying off, a shadow minister suggested on Tuesday.

Labour’s shadow minister for voter engagement, Cat Smith, told a fringe event at the party’s conference in Brighton that Tory voters were “dropping off” life’s “conveyor belt” with every year that passed.

“Age was a big defining factor in how [people] voted in the general election,” she said.

“47 was the defining factor. If you were 47 or younger you were more likely to vote Labour and obviously higher than that you were obviously more likely to vote Conservative.

“However, that is going up year by year. So when people go from being 47 to 48, they’re still wanting to vote Labour. And if you think about life as a conveyor belt you’ve got people dropping off the other end, as you will.

“I’m trying to say this as politely as possible. So in that sense, we should be very hopeful as a Labour movement… The next general election will be better than the last general election.”

Smith was speaking during a discussion about youth voters at a fringe event organised by the Corbyn-supporting Momentum group.

Recent polling has shown that Labour now holds a huge lead over the Conservatives among younger voters with Theresa May’s party holding a similarly large lead among those in their later years.

Other long-term trends also appear to be in Labour’s favour. A recent academic study commissioned by the BBC found that voters who regularly use the internet to receive their news are much more likely to vote Labour.

Among voters who used the internet “a great deal” to discover news about the general election, 61% voted Labour and 21% voted Conservative. By contrast, 56% who said they used the internet “not at all” to find the news voted Conservative and just 30% voted Labour.

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.