The Conservative Party is poised for a comfortablegeneral electionwin with 359 seats in parliament, according to new polling research.
The YouGov data, which uses the responses of tens of thousands of people, suggests the Tories could win a 68 – seat majority if the election were held tomorrow.
Laboris on track for 211 seats, it suggested, losing 44 constituencies to the Tories including those of departing deputy leader Tom Watson and veteran backbencher Dennis Skinner.
Download the new Indpendent Premium app
Sharing the full story, not just the headlines
The losses are predicted to come largely in the north of England and the midlands and have been linked by researchers to how the constituencies voted in the 2016 EU referendum.
YouGov’s MRP polling methodology correctly predicted the hung parliament that resulted from 2017 ‘s general election.
Pollsters asked some 100, 000 people about their voting intentions. They then used poll data from the week prior to develop a computer model factoring in demographics, constituency, past behavior and other metrics to estimate the probability a person with certain characteristics will vote for a given party.
The research found that Mr Johnson’s party was on course to pick up 42 more seats than during Theresa May’s disastrous 2017 campaign, potentially their best performance since 1987, YouGov said in a press release.
Labor appears set to lose even more seats to theSNPin Scotland, which YouGov expects to gain eight in total – two from the Conservatives, one from theLiberal Democratsand five fromJeremy Corbyn‘s party.
On the subject of the Lib Dems, leader Jo Swinson’s decision to drop her insistence that she could be the next prime minister appears to have been the right one. Her party is due to increase its seat count by just one on 12 December, from 12 to 13, because it is set to lose three it currently holds.
None of the MPs who have defected to the Lib Dems recently are currently set to win the seats they are standing in, YouGov said.
Chris Curtis, the company’s political research manager, said: “As expected, the key thing deciding the extent to which each of these seats is moving against Labor is how that seat voted in the European Union referendum.
“In the seats that voted most strongly to Leave in 2016 [60 per cent or more], the swing to the Conservatives is over 6 per cent.
“This is allowing the Tories to overturn quite substantial majorities in places like West Bromwich East, the seat held until recently by Tom Watson, and Don Valley, the seat currently held by Caroline Flint.
“The only silver lining for Labor is that there are still 30 seats where it is currently 5 per cent or less behind the Tories. If it can manage to squeeze the gap over the coming fortnight it may be able to paste over the cracks in their so-called red wall. But with just two weeks to go, time is running out for Labor. ”