Britain’s prime minister, Theresa May, has decided not to call a general election, which is the one thing that could help bring about the end of the Labour party.
Currently, if you look at any of the polls over the last few months, the Tories are massively ahead of Labour as the main opposition battles with major in-fighting and coups against its leader Jeremy Corbyn.
May’s spokesperson confirmed to several media outlets, including the Financial Times, that the UK will not have an early general election or a second European Union referendum despite the mass-shakeup in government since Brits voted for a Brexit on June 23.
The spokesperson said there was “no need” for another general election before the next scheduled May 7, 2020 date and that there would be no second EU referendum after saying that there are “no attempts to rejoin [the EU] through a backdoor mechanism.”
The Conservative party, led by David Cameron at the time, won the 2015 general election with a 12-seat majority. The party defied the betting odds at the time and secured an outright victory:
Britain’s main opposition — Labour — decided to shake-up its leadership after it lost the last general election under Ed Miliband’s control.
In September last year, Jeremy Corbyn won the Labour leadership vote with a landslide 59.5% of the vote over the weekend. This was huge. Andy Burnham came second with 19%, and Yvette Cooper finished with just 11%. Around 15,500 new members joined Labour in the 24 hours since Corbyn’s win. Overall, according to Labour, membership has grown to 515,000. This is up from just over 200,000 since the 2015 general election.
This clearly shows great support from Labour’s members. However, Labour’s MPs have tried to overthrow Corbyn by saying he is unelectable as a prime minister and that it is very unlikely Labour would be able to overthrow the Conservatives in the 2020 general election.
Now there is a bitter leadership race between Corbyn and Owen Smith — although membership are looking likely to keep Corbyn on, much to the chagrin of MPs.
But while all this is going on, the Tories have been continually establishing stronger and stronger support.
Ever since Corbyn took power, pretty much every poll that has come out has shown how Labour is behind the Conservatives when it comes to asking people who they would vote for if a general election was to be called right now.
Matt Singh of Number Cruncher Politics revealed this month just how stunning the gulf between the Tories and Labour really is.
The Tories have enjoyed an average net change of +4 points in opinion polls since May took over from David Cameron last month. On average, governments have plummeted to net ratings of -8 points at this stage in the electoral cycle (1975-2010). This means that the Conservatives are 12 points better off than the historical average:
Other polls over the last few months show that Tories are massively in the lead over Labour. For example, a YouGov poll in July gave a huge 11-point lead to the Tories (40% > 29%)
. Meanwhile, another one in August showed that the Tories have a stunning
14-point lead over Labour (42 % > 28%) — a 2% increase for the Tories since YouGov’s last survey. There are dozens more that show similar or same polling patterns.
The hugely popular and newly elected Mayor of London Sadiq Khan even reiterated how he will back Owen Smith for next Labour leader because Corbyn will not help the party win power:
“Jeremy has already proved that he is unable to organise an effective team and has failed to win the trust and respect of the British people.
“Jeremy’s personal ratings are the worst of any opposition leader on record and the Labour party is suffering badly as a result. He has lost the confidence of more than 80% of Labour’s MPs in parliament — and I am afraid we simply cannot afford to go on like this.”
Khan is right, Corbyn’s latest net satisfaction rating was -33%, according to an Ipsos MORI survey. This is the lowest rating any opposition leader has had since Margaret Thatcher’s premiership. And my colleague at Business Insider Adam Payne pointed out that this is a huge deal to how it translates into votes.
So really, the Conservatives just did Labour a massive favour by not calling an early general election because by the looks of things, they would be annihilated if the general election was called right now.