Jeremy Corbyn’s campaign just received a massive boost. And it’s an indication that with just under three weeks to go, Theresa May’s projected landslide is not only far from certain. It’s starting to look very shaky indeed.
A new poll by Ipsos MORI shows the Labour Party is steadily making progress. The party is now on 34% – an eight-point gain on where it started. And Labour is narrowing the gap between it and the Conservatives’ 49%. Meanwhile, UKIP has more or less been wiped out, with the Green Party overtaking it in popularity.
And Labour’s figures [pdf] are even higher in England:
Labour is polling an incredible 39% in England. Scotland is dragging it down. Thanks Jim Murphy! pic.twitter.com/BaXRAocePn
— Aaron Bastani (@AaronBastani) May 18, 2017
The telephone poll was the first since Labour’s manifesto launch. And it backs up other polls, saying its policies are proving very popular with voters. The ComRes poll conducted by The Mirror found that 65% of people supported increased tax on those earning £80,000 or more; 74% wanted to keep the pension age at 66, and 78% backed the fox hunting ban.
How the Conservatives’ manifesto launch will affect its polls ranking is yet to be seen. But there’s a chance that the party may have shot itself in the foot. The party has gone after its key demographic, pensioners, with the “dementia tax“, means testing winter fuel payments and not guaranteeing the triple lock pension. Meanwhile, policies such as getting rid of free school dinners, supporting a vote on fox hunting and refusing to commit to not raising national insurance contributions are also unpopular.
And some context is also needed. Tony Blair won the 2005 election with 35% of the vote. And in 2015, when Ed Miliband was at 34%, he was only one point behind David Cameron, with many polls predicting a hung parliament.
Obviously, those polls were wrong. The Tories went on to win a majority. But there’s a crucial point to be made. Throughout Corbyn’s leadership, he has been accused of wrecking the Labour party, of running it down to a place of no return. These latest figures show this couldn’t be further from the truth. It isn’t Labour’s support that has collapsed. It’s UKIP‘s, which is now benefiting the Conservatives.
Everything to play for
Polls often get it wrong. But what these polls tell us is that this election is not a done deal. And Labour’s surge is happening despite widespread media misrepresentation of its policies, and constantly banging us over the head with what a supposedly bad leader Corbyn is.
There are just under three weeks left. The more people hear Corbyn speak and the more people engage with Labour’s vision for the UK, the more popular he becomes. We do not have to accept May’s dystopian hell. We have an alternative. And we can do this.
– Register to vote in the 8 June general election. People can call 0300 200 3500 if they don’t already have a national insurance number.
– Discuss the key policy issues with family members, colleagues and neighbours. And organise! Join (and participate in the activities of) a union, an activist group, and/or a political party.
– Also read more Canary articles on the 2017 general election.
Featured image via author’s own and Flickr
We need your help to keep speaking the truth
Every story that you have come to us with; each injustice you have asked us to investigate; every campaign we have fought; each of your unheard voices we amplified; we do this for you. We are making a difference on your behalf.
Our fight is your fight. You’ve supported our collective struggle every time you gave us a like; and every time you shared our work across social media. Now we need you to support us with a monthly donation.
We have published nearly 2,000 articles and over 50 films in 2021. And we want to do this and more in 2022 but we don’t have enough money to go on at this pace. So, if you value our work and want us to continue then please join us and be part of The Canary family.
In return, you get:
* Advert free reading experience
* Quarterly group video call with the Editor-in-Chief
* Behind the scenes monthly e-newsletter
* 20% discount in our shop
Almost all of our spending goes to the people who make The Canary’s content. So your contribution directly supports our writers and enables us to continue to do what we do: speaking truth, powered by you. We have weathered many attempts to shut us down and silence our vital opposition to an increasingly fascist government and right-wing mainstream media.
With your help we can continue:
* Holding political and state power to account
* Advocating for the people the system marginalises
* Being a media outlet that upholds the highest standards
* Campaigning on the issues others won’t
* Putting your lives central to everything we do
We are a drop of truth in an ocean of deceit. But we can’t do this without your support. So please, can you help us continue the fight?