Polling guru predicts Labour to take hundreds of Tory seats

Lee Anderson gives his guide for voting in the local elections

The Conservatives are set to lose 800 seats in the local elections, according to a polling expert. Tory peer Lord Hayward predicted Labour will pick up around 550 of the council seats and the Lib Dems will take 250.

But the pollster said that if his prediction is correct it would “cause problems” for Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer as the Lib Dems would be taking more seats proportionately.

Lord Hayward told the Express: “My estimation is that the Tories will lose about 800 seats. This isn’t managing expectations, this is what I think they will do.

“Of those seats, they will lose roughly 550 to Labour and 250 to the Lib Dems. Now I know that that won’t add up because there are Residents and Greens and all sorts of other things but in round numbers that’s what I’m talking about.

“If those ratios between the Lib Dems and Labour are right then I think that will cause problems for Keir Starmer because the Lib Dems proportionately would gain many more seats than Labour.

“So I don’t think it would be viewed as a good time for Labour although obviously the Tories can’t be ecstatic at losing 800 seats, but they are defending a disproportionate number when they’re in Government which is abnormal.

“I think the Tories will probably think they ought to have done better. But they’ll be relieved, it’ll be a combination of both.”

Tory chair Greg Hands last month said the party was braced to lose 1,000 seats in the local elections.

Lord Hayward said: “Greg Hands is trying to manage expectations. But all the parties are trying to manage expectations.”

More than 8,000 council seats in England are up for grabs tomorrow across 230 local authorities, ranging from small rural areas to some of the largest towns and cities.

Lord Hayward said: “It is a general picture but if I was choosing two parts of the country that I think are particularly significant, one is either side of the Thames Estuary where you’ve got Dartford, Gravesend, Medway, Thurrock, Harlow, Basildon, all of which are not only councils that swap hands but they are the basis for marginal constituencies which Keir Starmer needs to win to get a general election.

“So either side of the Thames Estuary, Essex and Kent.

“And the other places are again linked which is Dudley and Walsall, which again produce historical marginals where the councils swing backwards and forwards.”

Lord Hayward added that Labour will need to be at least 10 points ahead of the Conservatives in the projected national vote share to be on course to win the next general election.

He said: “The other thing is looking at national equivalent vote. Labour have got to be in the 40 percents if they’re going to say it’s clear we are on the way to Government.

“But they also have to be a good 10 percent ahead of the Conservatives in those circumstances.”

Source: Read Full Article