Reform UK just two points behind Tories in latest polls but ex-minister tells LBC it's just initial 'spike'

5 June 2024, 20:54 | Updated: 6 June 2024, 00:23

Reform UK is closing the gap on the Conservatives, as they fall just two points behind Rishi Sunak's party in the polls.
Reform UK is closing the gap on the Conservatives, as they fall just two points behind Rishi Sunak's party in the polls. Picture: Getty/Alamy

By Jenny Medlicott

Reform UK is closing in on the Tories as the party is just falling two points behind, according to a new poll.

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Labour remains ahead in the polls at 40%, followed by the Tories at 19% and Reform UK at 17%, the Lib Dems at 10% and the Greens at 7%.

It means Mr Farage's party is just two points behind the Tories, after he announced his intention to stand in the election earlier this week.

The latest poll was taken on Monday after Mr Farage’s announcement, just before the first televised leaders’ debate between Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer on Tuesday evening.

Nigel Farage made a shock U-turn earlier this week as he announced that he would be standing in the July 4 poll, after having previously said he wouldn’t be to help Donald Trump’s campaign in the US elections.

The former UKIP leader made his candidacy announcement at a press conference in south-east London on Monday afternoon, saying he wants to lead a "political revolt".

The 58-year-old has tried to become an MP on seven occasions between 1994 and 2015.

The news will come as another blow to Rishi Sunak, after it was reported earlier on Wednesday that the Office for Statistics Regulation, the independent regulatory arm of the UK Statistics Authority, is investigating claims he made.

Read more: Rishi Sunak ‘breached ministerial code’ over Labour tax hike claim in leaders’ debate, Keir Starmer tells LBC

Read more: Woman who threw milkshake over Nigel Farage charged with assault and criminal damage

Reform UK has gone up two points in the polls.
Reform UK has gone up two points in the polls. Picture: Alamy

However, ex-Brexit secretary David Davis said he believes the latest polling is just a “spike” and will “go back down”.

Speaking to LBC’s Tonight with Andrew Marr, Mr Davis said: “I think this will go back down… A lot of my colleagues are very worried about it. I'm not seeing it at all on the streets.”

On Tuesday evening, the Prime Minister repeatedly accused Labour of planning to hike taxes for the average household by £2,000 - claiming that analysis showed Labour has a £38.5bn blackhole in its spending plans.

Keir Starmer today accused Mr Sunak of lying over the claims, adding that he believed he had “breached the ministerial code” by making the claims.

Speaking to an LBC reporter in Portsmouth, Sir Keir said: “Yes he breached the ministerial code because he lied, and he lied deliberately.

“Because we have made clear that our plans our fully costed, fully funded, they do not involve tax rises for working people. So that’s no income tax rise, no national insurance rise, no VAT rise.”

Watch Again: Tonight with Andrew Marr 5.6.24

It comes after the statistics watchdog said it was investigating claims made by Mr Sunak about the Labour party.
It comes after the statistics watchdog said it was investigating claims made by Mr Sunak about the Labour party. Picture: Alamy

The latest YouGov poll also gave Labour a smaller lead, after the polling company said they had updated their methodology.

While Reform’s support has grown in the new poll, the party’s support is spread more widely across the country rather than in concentrated areas - meaning they are less likely to win parliamentary seats.

Mr Farage said on Monday: "I just realised there are millions of people out there that wanted me to do this, and if I didn't do it, they will feel very let down.

“So I'm going to do it. And you know what, we're going to get a huge number of votes, we're going to get seats in Parliament. And the ambition is to be the voice of opposition to a big Labour majority."

He also confirmed he will take part in the leaders’ debate on Friday.

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