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'Lies lies lies' Red Wall election nightmare as Boris 'haemorrhaging' votes – latest polls

News'Lies lies lies' Red Wall election nightmare as Boris 'haemorrhaging' votes - latest polls

Boris Johnson will be privately preparing for losses in the local elections on May 5 as voters are given their first real chance to have their say on the party gate scandal. Senior officials fear many will vote with their feet and turn their backs on the Tories when choosing who to elect to their local authority body. It’s something that Labour is relying on if they hope to make gains in Red Wall areas lost to the Tories in the last round of votes.

With just two weeks to go before polling day, sources say the Tories could lose hundreds of seats across the country. Even party chairman Oliver Dowden conceded the polls would be “challenging”. 

Qadar Zada, Labour leader in Dudley, said there was “fury” over the scandal and it will likely cost the Government in the May 5 vote.

He said: “I’m talking to people on the doorsteps and they are very angry, they have missed out on things that no amount of money can ever replace. They feel duped. People are seeing lies after lies and they are fed up.”

And the most recent polling data suggests he could be right, with a new study from Electoral Calculus and Find Out Now study estimating that Labour could gain up to 835 seats in the May 5 vote.

READ MORE: Wakefield by-election polls: Will Labour reclaim its seat?

A poll by the think tank More in Common also found the Conservatives could struggle on polling day. The survey found the Tories have dropped to 38 percent of Red Wall voters compared to 56 percent in the last General Election in 2019.

The same poll also found that 61 percent of the public think Mr Johnson should resign over the crisis, and that even in some ‘Blue Wall’ areas, the party could have some trouble with voters turning to Labout and the Lib Dems.

Elsewhere, data from YouGov shows Labour remains in the lead with 39 percent of the vote (+1 from the previous survey on  April 13 to 14) to the Conservatives’ 33 percent.

While another poll from the firm also shows that on a scale of zero to 10, voters have cast a rather average 3.45 when asked how likely they are to vote for the Conservatives at the next election.

Polling guru Sir John Curtice has warned party gate could deal a hammer blow to Mr Johnson’s election chances.

But he added: “My view is that Partygate has significantly damaged the Conservatives’ standing, though it has not led to the collapse in the Conservative vote.”

Despite the furore over the fines, many still feel the Conservatives are the best party to deal with other issues currently affecting the nation, including supporting Ukraine and tackling the cost of living crisis.

Tory peer and pollster Robert Hayward told the Guardian: ““It is Partygate versus low council tax. That is essentially what the battle is.”

Back in Dudley, Patrick Harley, the Tory council leader, hopes the scandal wouldn’t affect his position too much.

He said: “The doorstep is . . . more positive than I would have thought after six months of headlines from Westminster.

“The media is in a frenzy but when I talk to people here it’s different to what you see on telly. Russia would think we were bonkers if we changed leader in this time of crisis.”

Despite admitting his shock when his party gained 12 seats on last year’s vote, he said he’s confident he can retain his seat, adding: “A good result would be holding our seats and taking one or two, a bad result would be losing a couple of seats to Labour.”

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