Today’s ICM poll makes grim reading for Labour MPs. The poll – based on samples taken from Friday to Sunday – shows that the Conservatives have received an impressive post-conference bounce, opening a 17-point lead over Labour:
Conservatives: 43pc (up 2)
Labour: 26pc (down 2)
Ukip: 11pc (down 2)
Lib Dems: 8pc (down 1)
Greens: 6pc (up 2)
To put things into perspective, if this lead were to play out in an election — on old boundary rules — the Conservatives’ majority could be boosted to 114 seats. The 17-point lead is the joint second highest ever recorded for the Conservatives by ICM — which has been polling since 1992 — only being beaten in 2008 when the Tories achieved a higher lead with Gordon Brown at his most unpopular during the financial crisis.
What’s more — while parties tend to expect a bounce in the polls after their annual conference — this comes after much negative press over the Home Secretary’s foreign worker list and Theresa May’s hints of a hard Brexit. Despite this, the only group in which Labour still maintain favourability is 18-24 year-olds – with 40pc backing Labour. However, this is also the group that is least likely to vote.
While the results suggest Labour to be on the brink of electoral oblivion, not everyone in the party is so concerned. On reading the news, Jeremy Corbyn’s brother Piers took to Twitter to dismiss the finding as untrue — claiming these polls are ‘as honest as Hillary Clinton’. If Labour wish to refrain from falling into the abyss, they will need to take a cold hard look at the results as they try and begin a new happier chapter for the party following Corbyn’s re-election.