LONDON — Boris Johnson is on course to win a small 28-seat majority in the U.K. general election, according to a major eve-of-election poll.
YouGov’s second seat prediction survey said the Tories are set to win 339 seats (up 22 on their total at the last election in 2017) with Labour dropping to 231 (down 31). This so-called MRP model accurately predicted a hung parliament in 2017.
However, the model also suggested the race has tightened considerably in the last two weeks. Its estimate of the Conservative lead has more than halved since November 27, when the first YouGov MRP poll predicted Johnson would win a 68-seat majority.
Both YouGov forecasts suggested the prime minister will have enough MPs to ratify the Brexit deal he struck with Brussels and ensure Britain will leave the EU on January 31.
However, the latest poll’s range of possible outcomes stretches from 367 Conservative seats to just 311. “Based on the model we cannot rule out a hung parliament,” Anthony Wells, YouGov’s director of political research, said.
The poll serves a blow to Labour, which is predicted to lose 29 seats to the Tories — down from 44 estimated in YouGov’s first MRP model. The new findings suggest the party would retain seats such as Canterbury and Kensington, win Chipping Barnett and Putney, but lose constituencies including Bishop Auckland, Newcastle-Under-Lyme and Don Valley.
According to the poll, the Liberal Democrats would win 15 seats (up three), the SNP would win 41 (up six), Plaid Cymru would win four (no change) and the Green Party would win one (no change). The Brexit Party is not expected to win any seats.
The so-called MRP — or Multilevel Regression and Post-stratification — poll was done by interviewing 100,000 people and feeding the results through a demographic analysis.