James Forsyth

These polls have Labour doing 50 percent worse than the Tories did in 1997

These polls have Labour doing 50 percent worse than the Tories did in 1997
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That Mori poll which has Labour on 18 percent is dominating conversation in Westminster tonight. Coming after the poll at the weekend which had Labour third, it has the speculation up another notch about whether a challenge to Brown might begin to materialise as early as Friday.

Putting these polls into perspective, offers no comfort to Labour as Andrew Cooper tells Daniel Finkelstein:

“Since the scandal broke over some MPs abusing their system of allowances, Labour’s average vote share in (11) published polls is 22.5%.  That’s nearly 10% below – fifty percent lower – than the Tories in 1997.  It is more than 5% worse than Michael Foot’s performance in 1983.”

If Brown was a Tory leader, he wouldn’t stand a chance. But the Labour party is less practised at assassination than the Tories. It is a skill the party will have to learn if it wants to avoid a massive defeat.

Written byJames Forsyth

James Forsyth is Political Editor of the Spectator. He is also a columnist in The Sun.

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