Here Are The Women Harriet Harman Says Could Swing The Election

Clue: take a look in the mirror...


by Sophie Wilkinson |
Published on

Today Harriet Harman, deputy leader of the Labour party, said that women are the key to next year’s election. This is because 54% of the marginal seats that could go either way have female Labour candidates. It’s also women’s votes that will control which way the election goes.

She explained, ‘I think this is a watershed election for the prospects for women; it is going to determine whether women go forward with their lives or all the progress is stalled and we go back. There is a lot of talk about SNP, the Libs or UKIP holding the balance of power. What we are saying is that it is women that hold the balance of power with their votes, and they will decide whether it is a Labour or Tory administration.’

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Getting into the basic facts, there are already more female MPs in the Labour party than any other party (bar one), making up a third of their MPs. The Conservative party only has 16% female MPs, the Lib Dems have 12% and UKIP have 0%. The Green Party have 100% female MPs (because they only have one, but still…).


According to Harman, this means, ‘The Tories are a party of men for men. It is simple; we are a party of women and men, the Tories are a party of men and that in turn affects policy.’

By her – pretty sound – logic, it follows that if lots of women are in a party, lots of women will vote for the party.

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What will happen if Labour’s women get their seats? Well, as well as having a Labour government, she told The Guardian there’ll be more focus on fairness at work, free childcare for three to four year olds, equal pay, domestic violence and women’s representation in society.

In 2010, 64% of women turned out to vote, according to Ipsos MORI. Also, only 44% of 18-24 year olds and 55% of 25-34 year olds turned up. If young women, who YouGov says are more likely to vote Labour, turn up at the rate people turned up to the referendum for Scottish independence(84.59%) well, we’ll have a very different government.

So who’s going to swing the election? Go look in a mirror. Yes, there are 40 female Labour candidates who could, but when it really comes down to it, the people who could really swing the 2016 election are you. Excuse our grammar.

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Picture: Eylul Aslan, Getty

This article originally appeared on The Debrief.

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