The Liberal Democrats have beaten the Conservatives into fourth place in the latest Opinium poll, with 12% to the Tories’ 11%, in what will come as a major blow to Theresa May.
The last time the Liberal Democrats or their predecessor party, the Liberals, defeated the Conservatives in a national election was in 1906 — and on these figures, the same could happen in just a fortnight. It comes as particularly concerning to the Conservatives, as Opinium has traditionally underestimated the Liberal Democrat vote share in prior polling.
The numbers show that the Lib Dems have enjoyed a considerable surge in light of their excellent results at the local elections, alongside their clear “stop Brexit” message and over 100,000 members. The Conservatives have meanwhile slumped to their lowest poll score on record as their refusal to change course on Brexit infuriates voters.
The Lib Dems had already been ahead of the Tories in the South West and South East regions according to regional subsamples released by Opinium earlier this week, but this is the first national polling showing them in the lead, a position which, according to an internal party source, is expected to continue.
“We’re very pleased that our message to stop Brexit is being heard and picked up by voters. We are ahead of the Conservatives, and that’s where we intend to stay.”
Labour figures should also begin to worry, with their vote share crashing. If things continue at the same pace, the Lib Dems could overtake them into second place, making it a battle between the Brexit Party and the Liberal Democrats in these elections.
Cover image: Getty