It’s Christmas, and in a manner not too dissimilar to Charles Dickens’ Ebenezer Scrooge, Sir Keir Starmer is being haunted by his Ghost of Christmas Past. How so? Through a new Savanta poll which reveals Labour’s polling lead has fallen to *just* 11%.
Polled between 2 and 4 December, Labour enjoyed 42% of national support, compared to 31% for the Conservatives, 10% for the Lib Dems, 5% for the Reform Party and the SNP at 4%. This marks the lowest Labour lead and vote share from Savanta since the middle of September, when the UK was in mourning after the Queen’s death.
Chris Hopkins, Savanta’s Political Research Director, said that Labour’s inflated lead in the polls had been “exacerbated by higher-than-usual proportions of 2019 Conservatives being undecided.” In the latest poll, only 10% of 2019 Conservative voters were undecided.
Thanks to the government’s, to put it politely, incompetence over the last year, Starmer has largely walked on water. During Liz Truss’ brief premiership, he reached polling leads most opposition parties could only dream of. And that has not vanished, yet.
Yet as an election draws closer, Starmer has no reason to be complacent. Ipsos found support this week for Scottish independence among those highly likely to vote was 56%, while the SNP remain the dominant force in Scottish politics by attracting 51% of support, compared to Labour on 25%. Even Nicola Sturgeon’s pledge to make the next election a de-facto referendum has not seen the party’s support wane considerably.
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Like previous Labour leaders before him, Starmer now faces the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come: the prospect of losing a general election. As Sir Keir looks forward to enjoying a turkey and mulled wine, that thought will remain at the front of his mind…
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