Reports in The Sunday Times this weekend suggest that the Labour Party has decided to ‘deprioritise’ the Southport seat – effectively acknowledging that the party has no chance of winning the seat, and must instead put its resources into other constituencies.
The Sunday Times report says: “Top staff were told which target seats to abandon and which Labour-held seats to focus on. The northwest region was the bloodbath: Bolton West, Morecambe and Lunesdale, and Southport were deprioritised, alongside Labour-held Warrington South, which has a majority of 2,549 but is expected to go blue”.
This follows a recent YouGov poll which predicted Labour were struggling to hold on to many of their seats, and may lose over fifty of them in the election on December 12th.
The news will come as a boost for the Liberal Democrats in Southport, who are fighting to regain the seat they held until 2017 from the Conservatives. Equally, it will be a blow to Conservative candidate Damien Moore, who is pinning his hopes on the opposition Liberal Democrat and Labour vote splitting, and letting him through the middle.
For Labour’s candidate Liz Savage, the decision by Labour top brass to abandon Southport will be a huge disappointment, signalling that her third attempt to take the seat will once again end in failure.