Voters in rural areas are deserting Boris Johnson and the Tories. Why would that be?

Tractor factor: more people than farmers live in the countryside – but will they usher in twilight for the Tories?

A survey of voters in rural areas has found that the Tories are about to lose their lead over Labour in the countryside.

This is the reason This Writer is sceptical about Somerton and Frome MP David Warburton’s reasons for saying he has been admitted to a psychiatric hospital with shock due to his suspension from the Tory whip for sexual misconduct and drug abuse.

Whether he meant it to be or not, it looks like he’s trying to get people to look on him (and his currently-former party) kindly.

And it smacks of whataboutery: people in rural areas have perfectly good reasons to shun the Conservatives this year – concerns over planning and the ‘levelling up’ agenda, but it seems they’re being asked to vote Tory anyway, out of sympathy for one who has been accused – whether falsely or not.

I hope the ploy doesn’t work this time (for a change). The figures – from that most accurate of pollsters, Survation – suggest that it may not:

The Survation survey of Cornwall, Cumbria, North Yorkshire, Norfolk and Gwynedd, Wales found that 36% of voters in the countryside now intend to vote Labour at next month’s local elections, two points behind the Tory vote share.

That is a 7.5% swing to Keir Starmer ’s party. At the 2019 General Election 46% backed the Tories and only 29% Labour.

I don’t like Starmer’s Labour – for very good reasons; he’d be a nightmare if he ever got into Downing Street – but anything that makes the Tories think again would be welcome right now.

Source: Boris Johnson losing countryside support as rural voters desert Tories in droves

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