Labour 'fighting for every vote' as Hartlepool by-election poll gives Tories 17-point lead

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer has insisted the party is “fighting for every vote” in the Hartlepool by-election as an opinion poll showed the Tories have opening up a double-digit lead in the constituency.

Tuesday, 4th May 2021, 10:20 am
Updated Tuesday, 4th May 2021, 10:21 am

Ahead of May 6’s vote, the Survation poll for ITV’s Good Morning Britain put the Conservatives on 50% – 17 points ahead of Labour in a seat which has remained red for 57 years in its current and previous guise.

Sir Keir, who has visited the constituency three times in the course of the by-election, said he hoped Labour would not lose another seat in the party’s so-called “red wall”.

Yet he acknowledged the party still had a “mountain to climb” after the devastating defeat under Jeremy Corbyn in the 2019 General Election.

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Conservative candidate Jill Mortimer, left, and Labour's Dr Paul Williams are both contesting the Hartlepool by-election.

“I hope we won’t lose Hartlepool. We are fighting for every vote there. I know that every vote has to be earned,” Sir Keir told the BBC Radio 4 Today programme.

“I said on the day that I was elected (Labour leader) that it was a mountain to climb. It is, we are climbing it and I’ve got a burning desire to build a better future for our country.

“I don’t think anybody realistically thought that it was possible to turn the Labour Party round from the worst general election result since 1935 to a position to win the next general election within a period of one year.

“It was always going to take longer than that.”

Hartlepool goes to the polls to elect a new MP on May 6.

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Read more: The full list of all 16 candidates in the Hartlepool by-election

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