Keir Starmer ‘has to think very carefully’ about leadership direction amid election woes

Keir Starmer ‘has to think carefully’ says expert

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The Labour supporter was invited onto BBC Politics Live on Wednesday to discuss Sir Keir Starmer’s hopes in the upcoming elections on Thursdays. The Labour leader faces the first key tests of his leadership in the Hartlepool by-election while Scottish Labour faces a battle to finish second behind the SNP. Mr Mason gave his analysis of where Sir Keir would stand were results to go against Labour, telling host Joe Coburn, the leader of the opposition would need to think “very carefully” about where he is taking the party.

Mr Mason told BBC Politics Live: “Success for Starmer tomorrow would be coming second in Scotland and growing the party’s vote share in the Hartlepool by-election and holding on to some councils.

“That would be actually a very cheerful night for Labour if they could do all those three things.

“But that is not the makings of a government.”

He added: “If he falls short of what I have just said there will be a few days of recriminations.

“In which he does have to think very carefully about changing what he does.”

Mr Mason said there was currently little opposition to Starmer from left-wing Labour MPs.

He said: “There is no left challenge to Keir Starmer there are lots of people meandering around grumbling about him.

“But there is no one prepared on the left of the PLP to stand up and say we have an alternative.”

The commentator added: “The problem he has is without the left, I mean the left might grumble but it is the majority of the party leadership.

“With the left feeling out in the cold unloved, dissed to be honest.

“There is no enthusiasm for what he is doing.”

Mr Mason’s comments come as polling shows Sir Keir is heading for a heavy defeat in Hartlepool.

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A poll by Survation has the seat turning blue for the first time in 62 years with Tory candidate Jill Mortimer predicted to pick up 49 percent of the votes.

The results put Ms Mortimer seven points ahead of Labour’s Candidate Dr Paul Williams on just 42 percent.

On Twitter, left-wing commentary Owen Jones has described the prospect of losing Hartlepool as “absolutely catastrophic.”

He wrote: “Labour won that seat twice under Corbyn. In 2017 Labour’s vote share not only increased – the party won its biggest majority there since 2001. And no, there’s nothing to celebrate here. It just prolongs the nightmare of Tory rule. Grim.”

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