‘Greater than 1997’: Tory minister says Labour heading towards largest landslide ever

Politics

A Conservative minister has said Labour will get “the largest majority this country has ever seen” if recent polls are correct.

Work and Pensions Secretary Mel Stride not only appeared to concede the election to Labour a day before voting begins but said they would gain a record number of seats.

He told Sky News: “It appears, if the polls are right, that we’re heading towards the largest majority that this country has ever seen, much greater than even 1997’s landslide.”

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Mr Stride was talking after other leading Conservatives, including Rishi Sunak, David Cameron and Boris Johnson, have warned of Labour gaining so many seats it would have a “supermajority”.

A Survation MRP poll released on Tuesday put Labour on course for a landslide victory, winning 484 of the 650 seats up for grabs, many more than the 418 won by Tony Blair in 1997.

It predicted the Conservatives would win just 64 seats – the fewest since the party was founded in 1834.

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Other MRP polls, which interview far more people than other polls, have shown smaller margins of victory for Labour, but still have the party winning by a large majority.

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Rishi Sunak has said the Tories need to fight to prevent a Labour supermajority. Pic: PA

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Analysis: Labour may be heading to victory but how will they stay in power?

Mr Stride said the Tories’ job now was to make sure Labour is held to account.

“The way you do that is by having sufficient Conservative Members of Parliament in there to hold it to account,” he added.

“And that also is an important issue tomorrow.”

Labour’s Pat McFadden said it was “disrespectful to the electorate” for Mr Stride to “call the outcome of the election before people have gone to the polls”.

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While Mr Stride has decided Labour will win a massive majority, the prime minister was insistent polling day could reduce that.

During a campaign rally on Tuesday at the National Army Museum in Chelsea, London, Mr Sunak said: “Now, it suits lots of people to say that the result of this election is a foregone conclusion but I know that it is not.

“Just 130,000 people switching their vote, giving us their support, is what it will take to deny Labour that supermajority they want. Every single vote matters.”

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Johnson finally joins the campaign, with just a day to go

Former prime minister Boris Johnson lent his support to his former chancellor, whose resignation from his government led to the end of his premiership.

Mr Johnson told the crowd of Conservative Party supporters Sir Keir Starmer would try to “usher in the most left-wing Labour government since the war”.

In reference to Reform UK, Mr Johnson told them: “Don’t let the Putinistas deliver the Corbynistas.

“Don’t let Putin’s pet parrots give this entire country psittacosis – which is a disease you get by the way from cosying up to pet parrots.”

He urged people who want “higher taxes next week, next year” and “uncontrolled immigration and mandatory wokery, and pointless kowtowing to Brussels” to vote Labour.

“There’s only one thing to do – vote Conservative on Thursday my friends and I know you will. I know you will,” he added.

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