The combined vote share won by the Conservative and Labour parties in this year’s local elections was the lowest ever since (my) records began. As those records stretch back to 1980, it’s a pretty sure bet it was also the lowest combined vote share for the country’s two biggest parties ever.
Judging by my previous experience of quoting national equivalent vote share figures, it’ll save time for all concerned if I have this little dialogue with myself:
A. “Here’s an interesting thing you find if you look at the changes between different years in the national equivalent vote share figures (which are adjusted to take into account which wards are up for election each year).”
B. “Nonsense! Balderdash! You can’t compare different years as different seats are up for election in different years. Are you a complete fool?”
A. “But I said I’m using the national equivalent vote share figures – which are adjusted to deal with exactly that issue. You’re right it would be wrong to use raw vote totals. I’m not, so what’s the problem?”
B. “Oh come off it! Typical Lib Dem with their dodgy figures! It’s stupid to compare vote shares in different years. Everyone knows that!”
A. “Er, but I’ve adjusted the figures to deal with exactly the problem you’ve mentioned. So what’s the deal?”