CORRECTION Starmer starts his 3rd year as LOTO with a negative approval rating

CORRECTION Starmer starts his 3rd year as LOTO with a negative approval rating

Today is the second anniversary of Keir Starmer’s election to the LAB leadership and the polls have him with negative approval ratings and his party a small but robust voting intention lead over the Tories.

A worrying feature from the numbers perspective is the very high level of don’t knows that pollsters get when they ask samples for their view on Starmer. In many ways the jury is still out.

On the Smarkets exchange, the former DPP is rated as a 35% chance to be next PM which I regard as a good bet. It is hard to see either him or Johnson being replaced before the general election and Starmer has a good chance of coming out of the election as PM.

What he has done to the LAB party itself is quite extraordinary. The de-Corbynisation has been ruthless and extensive and apart from a few acolytes of the former leader Starmer is in total control. In the end activists have regarded him in the way they did Blair and been prepared to make getting rid of the Tory government the primary objective.

As I have stated many times here the chances of Starmer’s party securing a majority are minuscule but that doesn’t matter so much. He can get the keys of Number 10 even if LAB wins fewer seats and gets fewer votes than CON.

A key part of Starmer’s PM potential comes from the SNP reducing the Tory total seats north of the border and for the LDs to flourish in those places where Davey’s party is the only one with a real chance of beating the Tory. There are no deals but it is in the interest of both LAB and the LDs to only run token campaigns in seats where the other is in with a shout.

Mike Smithson

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