The Deltapoll survey of the 57 constituencies the Conservatives gained in the 2019 General Election puts Labour on 49 per cent and the Conservatives on just 33 per cent.

The poll also puts Sir Keir Starmer’s party ahead in national voting intention, with Labour on 40 per cent and the Tories on 35 per cent.

If the results were repeated in a General Election it could lead to the loss of more than 100 Tory seats – enough to put Sir Keir in No10, although without a clear majority.

The findings come as Tory backbenchers are increasingly discussing whether to force a leadership challenge by sending letters calling for a vote to Sir Graham Brady, the chairman of the Conservatives’ backbench 1922 Committee.

The ‘Tory gain’ seats are dominated by MPs in the Red Wall seats in Labour heartlands the Tories won for the first time in 2019.

Writing in today’s Mail on Sunday, one of those MPs, Ashfield’s Lee Anderson, warns Mr Johnson that ‘some of the first-time Tory voters are beginning to have doubts’ because ‘the huge rises in the cost of living coming down the track, through higher energy bills, which my voters care far more about than the platitudes spouted about the ‘green agenda’ by the wealthy elite who flew into the COP26 summit in private planes’.

The poll finds that Red Wall voters put Sir Keir ahead in the ‘best Prime Minister’ rating, with 38 per cent compared with Mr Johnson’s 33 per cent, and indicates that the rows over parties at Downing Street in apparent breach of Covid rules has damaged the Tories’ standing in these swing seats.

Only 16 per cent of voters in the seats think Mr Johnson obeyed the rules, while 72 per cent think he did not.

The missteps by No10, which led to the resignation of Brexit Minister Lord Frost, have fed speculation that the MPs could force a vote of no-confidence and a leadership contest.

Despite his reputation for discretion, it has been claimed to The Mail on Sunday that an ally of Mr Johnson’s on the committee has tried to dissuade MPs from submitting letters by telling them they ‘can’t trust Graham to keep their identities secret’ – a claim Sir Graham described as ‘odd’.

The Prime Minister hopes to quell the unrest with a ‘reboot’ of his Government this month, including a shake-up at No10 and the belated launch of his ‘levelling-up’ manifesto.

But the plans are understood to have been thrown into doubt by opposition from Chancellor Rishi Sunak to more spending on top of hundreds of billions in Covid support for the economy.

The poll of 1,567 British adults between December 23 and 30 puts Mr Sunak as the favourite to succeed Mr Johnson in both the national and Red Wall samples.

The five-point national lead for Labour is the largest shown by Deltapoll since the General Election.

The firm said if its results were replicated at a General Election, the Tories could ‘lose more than 100 seats, including potentially upwards of 50 of those gained in 2019’.


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Deltapoll came up with its figure of 57 constituencies based on the 58 taken from other parties by the Tories, minus the seat of former Speaker John Bercow, who stood down.

The party made a net gain of 48 in 2019, having lost ten seats.

Last night, Tory MP and former Cabinet Minister Sir John Redwood urged Mr Johnson to scrap the rise to National Insurance due in April or risk a drubbing at local elections in May.

Writing on Mail Online, he says: ‘Sandbagging the economy with a tax on jobs will slow the growth rate and will make getting the deficit down more difficult.’