Tories face 'electoral extinction' with lowest support in five years while Lois Perry resigns as Ukip leader

Nigel Farage and Richard Tice/Lois Perry/Rishi Sunak

Follow below for all the latest updates from the 2024 General Election campaign

GB News/PA
Dimitris Kouimtsidis

By Dimitris Kouimtsidis

Published: 16/06/2024

- 08:33

Updated: 17/06/2024

- 07:46

All the latest updates from the 2024 General Election campaign as they happen

  • Savanta poll fuels Tory fears of 'extinction'
  • Labour rejects Conservatives' council tax claims as 'fantasy'
  • Transport Secretary Mark Harper defends Tories after Lord Cameron takes aim at Farage
  • Sunak warned of 'Canada-style' wipeout at the polls
  • Ukip leader Perry steps down for health reasons
  • Rosie Duffield row deepens as Labour peer backs down on 'lazy' jab
Additional reporting by James Saunders

A new poll by Savanta has handed the Conservative Party a mere 21 per cent vote share, fuelling warnings that they are facing "electoral extinction".

That is the lowest share for the Conservatives since May 2019 when Theresa May resigned as Prime Minister.

Labour will reportedly slap a higher council tax on homes with big gardens, according to the Tories - but Sir Keir Starmer's party has rejected the claims as "fantasy".

Elsewhere, Transport Secretary Mark Harper has defended the Conservatives following Lord Cameron's attack on Reform UK leader Nigel Farage.

And the former Australian High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, Alexander Downer, has warned Sunak of a "Canadian style result" - where the country's Progressive Conservatives were wiped out at the polls - at this July's General Election unless they change tactics.

While Ukip leader Lois Perry has resigned after just 34 days in her role, citing health concerns.

Join us again tomorrow for more live updates as just weeks remain until election day.

Duffield row grinds on as Labour peer backs down on 'frit or lazy' jabs

The Labour peer Michael Cashman has apologised to Rosie Duffield, the Labour candidate for Canterbury, after calling her too "frit or lazy" to attend hustings.

Duffield, who's seeking re-election in the Kent constituency, had been forced to pull out of the public meetings after what she called "constant trolling, spite and misrepresentation... over a number of years".

But when she made the announcement online, Cashman said: "Frit. Or lazy."

Kemi Badenoch had slated the peer for his remark, saying: "I can't imagine what it's like being Rosie in a party where her own colleagues continually attack her, just for standing up for women.

"This is now about more than women’s rights, but how a party manages internal disagreement. Instead of healthy debate, it’s intimidation and abuse. If this is what they do to their own, imagine what they will do to our country."

Even Wes Streeting had weighed into the debate, calling Cashman's comments "extremely unfair".

But now, Labour's first openly gay MEP has apologised.

In a social media statement, Cashman said: "I apologise unreservedly for a post that I put out regarding the Labour candidate for Canterbury.

"I fully understand any complaints that will be sent to the Labour party."

Fears Labour plotting secret capital gains tax hike after social media post

Morgan McSweeney, Labour’s campaign manager has been spotted in the likes of a LinkedIn post in favour of a £15billion tax hike.

The post by Matthew Torbitt, Senior Researcher & Communications Officer at House of Commons said: "Labour would be wise politically to raise capital gains tax, it is an easy sell to the three in 100 that currently pay it.

"We have to ask ourselves what sort of society we want to live in.

"A small rise would bring in over £15bn - lifting the two child cap would cost £1.6bn. Sounds a good idea to me!"

Lois Perry RESIGNS as Ukip leader

Lois Perry Lois Perry was elected leader on May 13GB News

Lois Perry has resigned as leader of Ukip after just 34 days in the role.

Perry was elected on May 13, but has now resigned her position due to health issues.

Posting on social media, Perry said she’d made the "difficult decision" after being hospitalised with pneumonia in April just weeks before winning the leadership contest.

Perry has described how she was left unable to breathe unaided, forcing doctors to place her in a high-dependency unit.

In her resignation statement, Perry said that after being "near death", she was stepping aside to "focus on my recovery".


Nigel Farage backed to 'drive down Tory seats to zero' at July election

Jack Posobiec

Jack Posobiec says there should be 'zero seats for the elites' at the general election


American alt-right political activist Jack Posobiec has backed Reform UK leader Nigel Farage to "take down the Conservatives" at the upcoming General Election, as he continues to storm the campaign trail.

Speaking at the Turning Point USA Conference in Detroit, Posobiec claimed that he "hopes" Farage can be the person to take down the Tories with Reform.

Comparing the political sphere in the UK to the US, Posobiec highlighted the "establishment" and "MAGA".

Posobiec explained: "We have the establishment, and then we have MAGA. And the way American politics works, because we have the two party system, is that our various populist movements exist within the party. So they exist."


Conservatives warned of 'Canadian style result' unless they change tactics

Alexander Downer

Alexander Downer has warned Rishi Sunak of a 'Canadian style' election result

GB News

Former Australian High Commissioner to the United Kingdom Alexander Downer has warned Prime Minister Rishi Sunak of a "Canadian style result" at this July's General Election, as the latest polling places the party behind Reform UK.

Speaking to Camilla Tominey on GB News, Downer claimed the Conservative Party can "still win the election" if they "change their tactics", in light of their ongoing feud with Reform UK and the party's leader, Nigel Farage.

Downer told GB News: "If they talk of nothing else but that, and be strident and determined in that message, they'll save the furniture.

"If they keep talking about themselves and Nigel Farage and so on, they will end up with a Canadian style result."


Mark Harper defends Tories after fresh attack on Reform

Camilla Tominey

Camilla Tominey grills Mark Harper on the Tories choosing to attack Reform UK leader Nigel Farage

GB News

Transport Secretary Mark Harper has been grilled for the Conservative Party's fresh attack on Nigel Farage, as Foreign Secretary Lord Cameron claimed the Reform UK leader wants to "destroy" the Tories.

Speaking to The Times, Lord Cameron claimed Farage is "trying to destroy the Conservative Party by standing for Reform".

Camilla told Harper: "Is it helpful for Lord Cameron to be attacking Nigel Farage? The people you should be attacking all the time are Labour rather than Reform, because at the end of the day, you're almost attacking yourself. You're attacking the right.

"At the end of the day, populist populism, if that's how you want to dress up Reform and Farage, is always going to be more successful electorally than unpopularism. The Tories are unpopular, and yet he's attacking Reform for being populist?"


Labour to introduce higher council tax on homes with big gardens, Tories claim

The Conservatives have claimed that Labour will introduce a higher council tax for homeowners with big gardens.

The Tories said that Sir Keir Starmer would use a scheme used in Wales to snoop on people's garden sizes via satellite for re-evaluations.

The claims suggest that households in England would be hit with an increase of £482 per year in council tax.

Labour has rejected the claims as "fantasy".

The Tories face 'electoral extinction' according to latest poll

Theresa May, Rishi Sunak

This is the lowest the Tories have polled with Savanta since Theresa May resigned


The Tories are facing "electoral extinction" after a new poll made for grim reading.

Polling by Savanta for the Telegraph put the Conservatives on just 21 per cent, while Labour is on 46.

That represents the lowest number for the Tories since May 2019 when Theresa May resigned as Prime Minister.

In contrast, this is the largest lead Labour (25 per cent) has had over the Tories in a Savanta poll, with Reform also receiving its largest ever share by the pollster, with 13 per cent.

Chris Hopkins, Savanta’s political research director, said: “Our research suggests that this election could be nothing short of electoral extinction for the Conservative Party.

"The hopes of Conservative candidates are being shot to pieces by poll after poll showing the Conservative Party in increasingly dire straits – and we’re only halfway through the campaign.

“There’s a real sense that things could still get worse for the Conservatives, and with postal votes about to drop through millions of letterboxes, time is already close to running out for Rishi Sunak.”

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