Jeremy Corbyn has been named as the preferred choice for Labour leader in critical Red Wall seats, according to new polling.
The Islington North MP, who could be forced to stand as an independent in the next general election after being banished from the party, is seen as the best man to step in and take charge of the Opposition should Sir Keir Starmer resign.
He is tied along with shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper according to a survey by DeltaPoll released over the weekend.
The pollsters surveyed Brits in seats first won by the Tories from other parties in the 2019 election.
With no overwhelming support for any Labour politician, it found Mr Corbyn and Ms Cooper tied as the top choice as the best person to succeed Sir Keir on eight per cent each.
Ed Miliband, who was responsible for Labour’s failed bid for power in 2015, came second on seven per cent, while just four per cent backed Angela Rayner to take on the top job.
The findings come despite Mr Corbyn having regularly been cited as a reason for having done so badly at the ballot box in the Red Wall seats in December 2019.
Labour won just 203 seats, a drop of 59 compared to the 2017 election, in what turned out to be the party’s worst night since 1935.
Boris Johnson won an 80 seat majority after Labour heartlands in the north and midlands rejected Mr Corbyn to back the Conservatives for the first time.
But following a series of scandals, it looks as though the tide could be turning.
DeltaPoll give Labour a five point lead on the Conservatives at 40 per cent of voting intention to 35.
In the Red Wall seats, if there was an election tomorrow, 49 per cent would vote Labour compared to 33 for the Tories.
Joe Twyman, co-founder and director of Deltapoll, told the Sunday Mail: “The Conservative victory in 2019 was due, in no small part, to winning over voters in seats where the party had not previously been successful.
“The data, however, show the task Boris Johnson faces to hold on to the seats that were gained in 2019.
“With recent controversies still fresh in the mind of voters and a number of important issues to address, the new year may not be a happy one for the Prime Minister.”