Raab on brink of losing seat despite bold Brexit fight – Lib Dem warns 'chances very high'

Since the historic 2016 EU referendum, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab has fought for the UK to leave the European Union. But, despite his efforts, Britain is now scheduled to leave the EU at the end of January this year, with the threat of a Jeremy Corbyn-led Government promising to give Britons another say on leaving the bloc. Ahead of the critical December 12 general election, the Foreign Secretary has been warned he is at risk of losing his seat, despite its huge majority of over 23,000 and the politician trying to deliver what the majority of Brits voted for, to leave the EU, over three years ago.

According to a critical YouGov poll which was published earlier this week, the Esher and Walton constituency, currently held by Mr Raab, was “likely” to be won by the Tories.

But, the Liberal Democrats, who have vowed to put a stop to Brexit, are hot on the heels of the Foreign Secretary’s seat, in the poll.

Voters in the Esher and Walton constituency voted to Remain by 58 percent in the 2016 EU referendum.

If Labour supporters vote tactically it could put Mr Raab’s control of the seat at risk, despite the area being represented by a Conservative since 1910.

Monica Harding and Dominic Raab

Monica Harding has said the chances of her beating Dominic Raab are very high (Image: YOUTUBE•GETTY)

Dominic Raab

Dominic Raab has been warned he could lose his seat (Image: GETTY)

Monica Harding, the Lib Dem candidate trying to win the constituency has also delivered a scathing warning to Mr Raab ahead of the election.

She told “My chances of winning are very high. The strength of feeling in Esher and Walton is against him and his hardline Brexit stance, something I hear every day whilst out canvassing.

“Traditional Conservative voters are clearly very unhappy about how extreme the party has become and how far removed it now is from its one-nation moderate tradition.

“The prorogation of parliament, first suggested by Raab, and the expulsion of Conservative moderates went down like a lead balloon here and Ian Taylor, former Conservative MP before Dominic Raab (for 23 years until 2010) very publicly endorsed me this week.

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Monic Harding

Monic Harding is fighting to win in the Esher and Walton constituency (Image: YOUTUBE)

“We are seeing a surge in support because of this. Voters want to support a moderate candidate here in Esher and Walton and that’s me.”

Ms Harding claimed results in the local elections and European elections earlier this year shows the “strength of feeling here in Esher and Walton and the movement to the Liberal Democrats” – with the Greens also standing aside in the constituency.

The Liberal Democrat candidate warned a “vote for Labour” was also a “vote for Dominic Raab”.

Asked about her message to Brexit voters, who haven’t seen their democratic decision implemented since 2016, Ms Harding said: “The majority of people in Esher and Walton voted to remain.

“Instead of moderating his position and trying to represent their views by compromising, Dominic Raab has instead pursued a hard-line Brexit.

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Jeremy Corbyn

The Lib Dem claimed a voter for Labour in her seat was a vote for Raab (Image: GETTY)

Jo Swinson

Jo Swinson has vowed to stop Brexit (Image: GETTY)

My chances of winning are very high

Monica Harding

“What voters here see coming down the track is the hardest of Brexits, and the potential of a no deal which is economically very damaging to the country and this constituency.”

Ms Harding added that voters are “angry about how he hasn’t moderated his position” but has pursued “a very hard Brexit”.

This week a critical YouGov poll found Mr Johnson is on track to secure a huge majority in the 2019 general election.

But, the poll also suggested Brexiteers Iain Duncan Smith, Steve Baker, John Redwood, Philip Davies and Zac Goldsmith were all at risk.

The constituency-by-constituency estimate by YouGov, published in The Times, indicates that if the election was held on Thursday, the Conservative Party would win 359 seats, 42 more than they took in 2017.

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General Election news: Seats won at previous elections (Image: NC)

It would also take 43 percent of the vote, and in number of seats, this would be its best performance since 1987.

Labour, meanwhile, is set to lose 51 seats, falling from 262 seats in 2017 to 211 now, and taking 32 percent of the vote, a nine percentage point decrease.

The poll also suggests none of the candidates who switched to the Lib Dems in recent months will win in their constituencies.

Chris Curtis, political research manager at YouGov, said the current analysis shows the Tories have a “comfortable majority”, with seats coming their way at the expense of Labour in the North and Midlands.

Boris Johnson

Boris Johnson has also been warned about the polling in his constituency (Image: GETTY)

He said: “As expected, the key thing deciding the extent to which each of these seats is moving against Labour are how that seat voted in the European Union referendum.

“In the seats that voted most strongly to Leave in 2016 (60 percent or more in favour of departing the EU), the swing to the Conservatives is over six percent.

“This is allowing the Tories to overturn quite substantial majorities in places like West Bromwich East, the seat held until recently by Tom Watson, and Don Valley, the seat currently held by Caroline Flint.

“The only silver lining for Labour is that there are still 30 seats where it is currently 5 percent or less behind the Tories. If it can manage to squeeze the gap over the coming fortnight, it may be able to paste over the cracks in their so-called Red Wall. But with just two weeks to go, time is running out for Labour.”


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