New poll suggests Conservatives heading for London drubbing in local elections

Posted On: 
5th March 2018

Theresa May is heading for a bad night at the local elections after a new poll suggested voters are unhappy with the party's performance in government.

Theresa May is braced for a bad night 3 May.
PA Images

The survey of more than 3,000 people in London showed that just a quarter said they approved of the Government's record to date.

Mrs May only received a satisfaction score of 35 out of 100, compared to 47 for Jeremy Corbyn and 53 for London mayor Sadiq Khan.

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Focus groups alongside the poll, by former Tory chairman Lord Ashcroft, also found that many Tory voters face "a dilemma between wanting to express their displeasure, especially over Brexit, and the wish to keep their council in what they regarded as safe hands".

Writing in the Evening Standard, the Conservative peer said: "Even those who are not inclined to punish the Conservatives for Brexit itself see an embattled Prime Minister and a Government divided and preoccupied by Europe, and which seems to lack both the energy and the empathy to deal with other big, urgent issues.

"We have seen before what happens when the Tories look like this and people look beyond Labour’s traditional shortcomings.

"The Americans like to say all politics is local. In the London elections, the Tories will hope voters see things that way. They have two months to convince them."

One Tory activist told PolticsHome the findings were "not a massive surprise".

He said: "A part of me thinks a London drubbing will be good. The leadership and the pretenders to the throne need a loud wake up call. Heads rolling in London may be the only way."

A separate poll last month by Queen Mary University gave Labour a 26-point lead in London over the Conservatives.

Tory MPs have also warned that Mrs May's own position could come under threat if the Conservative councils of Westminster and Wandsworth were to fall to Labour.

Jeremy Corbyn's party are also hoping to make major gains in council elections across the country on the same night.