The Conservatives are gearing up for the next general election amid concern about a rise in support for Reform UK, a news report has claimed. The Telegraph has claimed Conservative HQ is “significantly” increasing efforts to attract new donations and is set to embark on hiring campaign managers.
A survey by People Polling, published on Friday, showed that support for the rebranded Brexit Party has risen to eight percent.
The Telegraph reported that while Reform UK is unlikely to take any seats from the Tories, it could siphon off votes in key marginals and help Labor pick up seats by splitting the right-wing vote.
Reform UK leader Richard Tice has said he has been in contact with several Conservative backbenchers about defecting at the next election.
Tory MPs have expressed fears that those who voted for them in 2019 will turn to Reform UK because the Conservatives have “failed to deliver” on immigration.
Rishi Sunak is set to hold a Cabinet away day at Checkers this week to brainstorm strategies for the next election.
Pollsters will present the Prime Minister and his team with the latest surveys, which are expected to paint a grim picture, particularly across the Red Wall.
Peter Gibson, the MP for Darlington, said getting Channel migrant crossings under control would be key.
He told the Telegraph: “It is absolutely something that we’re going to be judged on and we do need to deliver on.
“We need to see the Home Office delivering decisions much more quickly, we need to see visible signs of repatriation taking place.
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He told the publication: “Clearly it will have an impact if they continue to poll even at these levels, partly because it will unnerve and distract the Conservative Party.
“It is not yet clear what share Reform would actually get if, in particular, the cross-Channel matter was progressed.”