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Tories facing worse defeat than 1997 landslide in general election, new poll suggests

The Tories are facing an election defeat worse than the 1997 Labour landslide, polling has shown.

In the latest blow to Rishi Sunak’s leadership, YouGov predicted Labour would win 403 seats if an election was held tomorrow.

The Conservatives are on course to win 155 seats – fewer than during the Labour victory under Sir Tony Blair.

It marks a drop in the number of constituencies the party was projected to win in the same polling carried out in January, when the Tories were set to secure 169 seats.

The drop in support indicates there has been no resurgence for the party since the Government’s tax giveaway budget.

Meanwhile for Labour, the result is 18 seats higher than earlier in the year suggesting it is growing in popularity among voters.

YouGov interviewed 18,761 GB adults throughout March in the days following the spring Budget.

Chancellor Jeremy Hunt announced at the time that the government would be implementing a further two per cut to national insurance contributions (NIC), in what was widely seen as a pre-election sweetener to try to improve the party’s fortunes.

But this latest analysis from YouGov suggests Sir Keir Starmer’s Labour Party is on course for a win that would rival Tony Blair’s – whilst Mr Sunak faces a worse result than John Major.

In the 1997 election, Labour under Blair won 418 out of the available 659 House of Commons seats.

The analysis, which uses the multi-level regression and poststratification (MRP) method of polling to predict results in specific seats, found prominent Tory figures are at risk.

Chancellor Jeremy Hunt, Commons Leader Penny Mordaunt, Science and Technology Secretary Michelle Donelan and Welsh Secretary David TC Davies are among senior ministers who are predicted to be ousted.

These big name Conservatives were also named as being at risk in a similar poll by Survation, published in The Sunday Times, which indicated the Conservatives would reduced to just 98 seats.

The Survation poll suggested even Mr Sunak could lose his seat and found Labour could be on course to win 468 seats.

There has been concern among Conservatives that Reform UK, the party set up by Nigel Farage, could damage its chances electoral by shaving off right wing voters.

While the party has built up its share of support in recent polling, the constituency level analysis shows it is still not projected to win any seats, despite coming second in 36 seats.

The party is polling highest in the so-called red wall seats of Barnsley North and Hartlepool – but remains twenty points behind Labour in both constituencies.

The data suggests Reform could be winning over some of the 2019 cohort that swung from Labour to the Conservatives under Boris Johnson, leaving the seats open for Sir Keir’s party to take.

The Liberal Democrats are up by two, to 49, based on the same modelling in January. And the Green Party will hold Brighton Pavilion – but will not make gains elsewhere.

In Scotland, YouGov projects Labour will be the largest party with 28 Scottish seats to the SNP’s 19.

Plaid Cymru are up by one versus our January model, to four seats total, with the Welsh nationalists now projected to be ahead in Caerfyrddin.

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