General Election 2024: Tory wipeout and 12 ministers at risk of losing seats, YouGov poll suggests

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Labour could be on course to win a historic landslide, with the party expected to win a 194-seat majority, a YouGov poll shows.

It would be the highest number of seats of any party at any election since Stanley Baldwin won a majority of 208 in 1924.

Sky News has partnered with YouGov for the campaign and today we publish the first of their three polling projections, known as MRPs, which suggests the United Kingdom is on the cusp of a major redrawing of the political landscape.

The projection shows a historic Labour landslide, bigger than Tony Blair achieved in 1997.

It also projects a Tory wipeout in large parts of the country, a Lib Dem surge and the Scottish National Party losing over half its seats in Scotland, if the election were being held right now.

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The poll has Labour on 422 seats, up 222 compared to the 2019 results based on new constituency boundaries. This is the highest number of Labour seats on record, and a much bigger majority than anything else since the Second World War.

YouGov MRP poll for Sky News suggests that there are no safe Tory seats remaining

A 194 majority for Starmer would dwarf Mr Blair’s 1997 landslide majority of 179 and that of Margaret Thatcher, who got 144 in 1983.

The Conservatives would plummet to 140 seats, down 232 – as they face a near wipeout in London, the North East, the North West and Wales. This is the lowest since 1906 when they won 131 seats. This means the party retreats predominantly to the South East, South West and East Anglia.

This projection gives the Tories significantly fewer seats than the previous lowest number of Tory seats in British post-war history: 165 in 1997.

The Lib Dems would get 48 seats according to this projection, up 40 on 2019, quadrupling their seats and far higher than Lib Dem pollsters were predicting last year. This would mean Ed Davey’s party does not break records but takes them back to their previous levels of success under Lord Ashdown, who got 46 seats in 1997 and 62 under Charles Kennedy.

The SNP would get 17 of 57 seats in Scotland in this projection and down 31 seats on the notional 2019 results. This is the nationalist party’s lowest score this decade and well down from the peak of 56 out of 59 seats in 2015.

YouGov’s polling projection is based on interviews with 53,334 people in England and Wales and 5,541 in Scotland, with data collected between 24 May and 1 June.

This projection, which models how each individual constituency would vote, implies the following vote shares: Con 24.5%, Lab 42.9%, Lib Dem 10.6%, Reform 10.1%, Green 6.7%, SNP 2.8%, Plaid 0.7%, Others 1.7%.

YouGov MRP suggests that the Conservatives will lose 19 points on the 2019 result

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The scale of the rout under this projection means many of the Tories’ biggest cabinet figures are now under threat in this campaign.

Jeremy Hunt, the chancellor, Grant Shapps, the defence secretary, Penny Mordaunt, the Commons leader, Victoria Prentis, the attorney general, Alex Chalk, the justice secretary, David TC Davies, the Welsh secretary and Johnny Mercer, the armed forces minister in the cabinet are all on course to lose their seats under this projection.

Twelve of the 26 members of the cabinet who are running for re-election are at risk in total.

In addition, the future of Steve Baker, Northern Ireland minister, Bim Afolami, Economic Secretary to the Treasury, and housing minister Lee Rowley are all hanging in the balance, the projection suggests.

Twenty-two of the 45 ministers of the government confirmed to stand are at risk.

One member of Labour’s shadow cabinet is also at risk under this projection. The shadow culture secretary Thangham Debonnaire is fighting the Greens in her Bristol Central seat: YouGov says this seat is in the balance.

What is an MRP poll?

You might come across the term MRP quite a lot in the coming weeks as we head towards the general election on 4 July.

An MRP poll – which stands for multilevel regression and post-stratification – is a type of poll that gets pundits excited because it draws from large amounts of data, including a large sample size and additional information like locations.

MRP polls first ask a large representative sample of people how they will vote. They then use that information of how different groups say they will vote combined with information about the sorts of people who live in different constituencies. This allows the pollster to estimate how people will vote in each constituency across the country – even when they may have surveyed just a few people, or even none, in some places.

This can then be broken down into smaller groups to see how voters in different areas say they plan to vote. Rather than making more generalised assumptions that everyone behaves the same way in different constituencies, it takes into account the fact that every constituency is its own race and local issues and trends may be at play.

What MRP can’t do is account for very specific local factors – such as a hospital or large employer closing down in a constituency, or a scandal relating to a particular candidate.

It still involves a lot of assumptions and estimates – and some races are too close to call with any level of certainty. It also only gives a snapshot of people’s opinions, and a lot can change over the course of an election campaign. However, it does give us a more nuanced idea about what the general election result could be than other more generic polls.

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