Several Brexit Party candidates including Peter Udale (Cotswolds) and Philip Walling (Workington) have withdrawn and urged others to do so as well in order to avoid splitting the Brexit vote. Party leader Nigel Farage will not be standing. Writing in the Telegraph, polling expert Sir John said: “On average the polls currently suggest that while 20 per cent of those who voted Leave are minded to vote for Nigel Farage, just one per cent of those who backed Remain would do so – and these are likely folk who have since changed their minds about Brexit!
“This inability to reach beyond Leave voters puts the Brexit Party at a disadvantage compared with the Conservatives, who are able to claim the support of nearly one in five (18 percent) of those who voted Remain.”
In the 2017 general election, Labour secured twice as many Remainer votes than it did Brexiteers.
The Tories had between two and three Leave voters than it had Remain voters.
Sir John explained: “According to recent polling by ICM and Opinium he is, in practice just slightly better at winning over Labour Leave voters than Conservative ones.
“Approaching one in five of Labour Leavers (18 percent) say they will now vote for the Brexit Party, while Mr Farage is also winning over one in seven (14 percent) of those Leave voters who backed the Conservatives last time.
“As a result, while Labour have lost just six per cent of all of its 2017 vote to Nigel Farage’s party, the Conservatives have lost as much as 10 per cent of theirs.”
Sir John acknowledged that it should not be assumed these voters will vote the same as they did two years before if the Brexit Party did not run, but he said “it is highly unlikely that more of them would back Labour rather than the Conservatives.
“Meanwhile, it is far from clear that Mr Farage is unique in his ability to win over Labour Leave voters.
Commentators had said traditional Labour support is common in the North of England and the Midlands.
Sir John summed up: “In short, there is little evidence to support the view that Mr Farage is damaging Labour more than the Conservatives – and plenty to the contrary.
“Still, perhaps we should remember that not all Leave voters are the same.
“Perhaps the Brexit Party is acquiring the support of those who, like Mr Farage, believe that Britain should be leaving the EU without a deal and who are reluctant to endorse the Prime Minister’s deal.”
Electoral calculus forecasts the Brexit Party to win 10.2 percent of the vote but no seats.
The forecast has been built on a amalgamation of polls taken between October 25 and November 4 that sampled 15,917 people.
The Tories are currently forecast to pick up 38.2 percent of the vote and 373 seats.
Since the 2017 election, this is a dip of 5.3 percentage points, but an increase of 55 seats.
Labour are forecast to get 27.2 percent of the vote and 182 seats.
This is a percentage decrease of 13.8 points and a loss of 80 seats compared to the 2017 poll.
The general election will be on December 12.