‘He should resign!’ Even most LABOUR voters want ‘boring’ Starmer to quit over beergate
Michela Morizzo analyses results of recent by-elections
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Sir Keir is expected to learn his fate from Durham Police this week as they investigate allegations that both he and his deputy Angela Rayner broke lockdown rules with Labour activists in April last year. Starmer has said he will resign if he is fined but an exclusive poll for Express.co.uk has revealed that two thirds (66 percent) of all voters believe Starmer should resign if he is found guilty of lockdown rule breaking whether he is fined or not.
More damagingly, for Starmer, 52 percent of Labour voters in the poll by Techne UK said they believe Starmer should go even if he is not fined reflecting a growing unhappiness with his leadership.
In recent weeks Labour MPs themselves have not hidden their desire for a change in leader because they do not believe Starmer can lead them back to victory.
Even shadow cabinet members have briefed that he is “boring, dull and completely uninspiring.”
Meanwhile, many Labour MPs openly defied his ban on joining RMT rail strikers on the picket line.
In the Techne UK/ Express.co.uk tracker poll Labour maintained a six point lead over the embattled Tories but actually saw support drop by one point to just 38 percent.
While the party won back Wakefield from the Conservatives in last week’s by-election there was only a 20 percent turnout suggesting Labour largely won because Tories stayed at home.
When Starmer walked through Wakefield to greet his new MP he was humiliated when he was handed a lemon by a local trader who said that was what he is.
But it is the decision by Durham Police into alleged lockdown breaking last year which could see him quit with a promise that he will resign if he is fined.
The incident on April 30 2021 saw Starmer, Rayner and around 18 Labour activists consume £200 of curry washed down with beer at a late night event in Durham after a day of political campaigning.
Durham Police had previously given a warning to the Prime Minister’s former chief of staff Dominic Cummings for breaking the rules and initially concluded that there was nothing to investigate with Starmer.
However, last month they reopened their inquiries, setting up a serious incident room claiming that “significant new evidence” had emerged.
It had been revealed that Labour had been misleading about the incident, at first claiming Rayner was not there when it emerged that she was.
Starmer had also insisted that it was not pre-planned but a memo was leaked showing that it had been in the diary.
Starmer had also initially said only six people were present, this increased to 15 and then when the police sent out questionnaires to those at the event the number was 20.
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Starmer has for months claimed that Boris Johnson is “unfit” to hold office over the Partygate lockdown rule breaking in Downing Street.
He was criticised even in his own party over “constantly banging on about Partygate” including by potential leadership hopeful Lisa Nandy in the shadow Cabinet according to reports.
Another shadow cabinet member told Express.co.uk: “It’s because he [Starmer] has nothing to say on policy. Nobody knows what we stand for at the moment.”
But the poll has shown that even without a fine most voters think he should now resign including a majority of his own party’s supporters.
However, there are question marks over who would replace Starmer if he does quit with favourite Andy Burnham not an MP, leading shadow cabinet member Wes Streeting coming under criticism for historic Tweets and many of the others not having a high profile with the public.
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