14 October 1969
The lead story in today’s Guild Gazette suggests that student radicalism is not as widespread as we might think:
In an extensive opinion survey conducted during last week, students were asked which party they would vote for if there were to be a general election.
The Conservatives polled the highest number of votes, very closely followed by the Labour Party. About one-third of students polled either do not intend to vote in a General Election, or do not know which party they would vote for. As a percentage of the whole poll, the combined total of these non-voters and don’t knows equals the percentage of the leading party, the Conservatives.
Don’t Know: 14%
Will not vote: 15%
Footnote from the future (2010)
There was a general election – held soon after the end of this university year, in June 1970, and the first in which young people of 18 or over could vote. It resulted in a surprise victory for the Conservative Party under Edward Heath, which defeated the Labour Party under Harold Wilson. The election also saw the Liberal Party and its new leader Jeremy Thorpe lose half their seats. Most opinion polls prior to the election had predicted a comfortable Labour victory and had put Labour up to 12.4% ahead of the Conservatives. However on election day, a late swing gave the Conservatives a 3.4% lead.