The outcome on the June 8th shocked everyone; no-one was expecting Labour to gain seats and Conservatives to lose seats. Since then every political commentator has been attempting to make sense of how Labour has seen such an increase in vote share. Theresa May also increased her vote share to higher than that of Blair in 1997, but lost seats, significantly in England.

Theresa May’s grip on power has been maintained, so far, by their best showing in Scotland in 40 years, by winning 12 seats. Labour managed to make some of the ground up on their significant losses in Scotland from the last election by winning 7 seats.

The youth of today

BBC's Question Time, the day after the election, highlighted that large proportion of journalists, political commentators and politicians haven’t quite grasped why Labour had a significant victory in terms of expectation over Theresa May and the Conservatives. Labour’s strength and gain didn’t come from having a large proportion of press or wealthy backers on their side. Their strength came with the mobilisation of people across the country and their ability to harness Social media to its full extent.

The Conservatives spent more on social media campaigning but failed to engage voters with their advertising, whereas Labour’s online campaigns were often poignant and felt real rather than forced and fake.

The youth vote was another key factor, with reports suggesting 72% of 18-24s voted on June 8th. The figure has yet to be confirmed but this engagement with younger voters means that they will be likely to vote again in the future.

Cognitive dissonance

It was reported in the Telegraph and various other media outlets that within Labour heartlands, UKIP voters were switching their allegiances to Conservative.

However, this hasn’t turned out to be true, a fair chunk of UKIP voters have switched to Labour, it is estimated to be a 50/50 split between Conservative and Labour in UKIP gains. The so-called ‘establishment’ displayed a staggering amount of Cognitive Dissonance from society itself. Theresa May’s campaign epitomised this very aspect, with her constant avoidance of public scrutiny and engaging with real voters.

Theresa May tried to make this election all about Brexit but whilst people believe it is important, people have concerns in their everyday lives that she failed to address. She was trying to tell people what is important to them, rather than listening to what is important to them. This display of cognitive dissonance supported by many the press and journalists turned people towards Labour from other parties such as UKIP.

Politics has changed

Analysing it from a traditional sense of who won and lost is murky. Conservative, SNP and Labour have all simultaneously won and lost, Conservative because they will still form a government but a weak minority after losing seats; Labour gained seats and changed the conversation within politics itself but still lost the election and the SNP won Scotland but also lost seats.

The strength Labour showed, was their ability to mobilise people and engage voters - what happens next is unknown.

Labour’s victory is signalling that change is slowly happening within the heart of society itself and whilst some of the old guards remain on to fight for the status quo, there are others engaging who want real change. They gained seats and changed the conversation within politics itself but still lost the election and the SNP won Scotland but also lost seats. This could be the start of something new - where politics grows up and politicians begin to work together because this election has proved that our political system is broken.