Former Labour MP says party's appeal is 'national reaction' to Tories, not popularity of Starmer

Former Labour MP says party's appeal is 'national reaction' to Tories, not popularity of Starmer
Georgia Pearce

By Georgia Pearce

Published: 19/06/2024

- 20:45

A former Labour MP has said he believes that the support for Labour ahead of the General Election is largely a response to the previous Tory government than anything to do with the widespread popularity of the party or Keir Starmer.

Siôn Simon also said he did not think that Labour would win 516 seats as predicted in one poll.

Speaking on GB News, Siôn Simon said: “ I don't think there's any chance that [516 seats] is going to happen. I mean, we've had five of these MRP polls now and they all show a comfortable majority for Labour.

“I don't think there are many people who don't think that Labour is going to win this election, including Rishi Sunak and Michael Howard and everybody in the Tory party.

“But there's wide variation between [the polls] in terms of how much Labour will win by and this poll is a real outlier at the very extreme end with an absurdly large majority. That's not going to happen. No chance.

“I don't think Keir Starmer or Labour strategists, I don't think they would claim that he has been kind of acclaimed in the way that Blair was in the run up to 1997.

“I think Labour does understand that what's going on here is more about a national reaction to the catastrophic reign of chaos we've had under 14 years of the Conservatives than it is about a hugely warm affection for either Labour corporately, or personally.

“But I think what he and Labour have done is made themselves, and I think the polls demonstrate this and let's be clear, not just polls, but umpteen by elections, council elections, mayoral elections, lots and lots of real votes in real elections.

“They demonstrated that people do now feel that Labour is a credible opposition. They're sick of the Tories. They want to get the Tories out. And they feel that Labour is a reasonable, trustworthy, mainstream opposition that they can put their faith in.

To have a go must be better than this terrible Tory lot.”


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