Curtains for Starmer: Angela Rayner tipped to take over as Keir faces crunch election

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With the pressure rising over Sir Keir’s leadership, former MEP Patrick O’Flynn has claimed even the Labour man’s most staunch defenders are now “close to giving up”. After a shocking electoral performance in May, the former SDP and Ukip MEP has tipped deputy leader Angela Rayner to take over the reins from Sir Keir. Many from the left of the Labour Party have already called for Sir Keir to be replaced by his number two ahead of a crunch by-election in Batley and Spen.

Amid these calls, Mr O’Flynn claimed Ms Rayner has the identity to give the party direction after becoming lost under the current leader.

Writing for the Spectator, Mr O’Flynn said: “As Keir Starmer’s re-run of the great Change UK centrist dad experiment sinks deeper into political quicksand, the importance of a party leader being able to project a compelling personality becomes ever more obvious.”

The Labour party lost eight council seats and a further 327 councillors in what was a horrendous electoral loss in May.

The party also lost a key stronghold seat of Hartlepool which has been a Labour seat since 1964.

Keir Starmer

Keir Starmer: Angela Rayner has been tipped to take over (Image: GETTY)

Keir Starmer

Keir Starmer was forced to appoint Ms Rayner to three positions (Image: GETTY)

In a further blow to Sir Keir, Labour only managed 622 votes in the Chesham and Amersham by-election as the Lib Dems took a seat from the Tories.

Amid these poor performances, Mr O’Flynn insisted the Labour party needs a leader who can revitalise the party and stop its impending doom.

He added: “Labour is in dire need of a polarising figure who can at least give it a basic identity and a sense of mission rather than the bland non-presence with which it is currently saddled.

“And the persona of bovver boot-wearing Aggro Angie could be just the ticket.

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Keir Starmer

Keir Starmer: The Labour leader has suffered two poor election performances (Image: GETTY)

“Whatever you think of her, the woman knows how to identify a political bruise and then keep punching it.

“A look at her social media output also reveals her innate talent for expressing comprehensible opinions in direct language, a trait she shares with the likes of Boris Johnson and Nigel Farage.

“Far more than Starmer’s, her politics is also rooted in workplace struggle, with basic priorities of winning better pay and conditions for shop floor staff cropping up again and again as befits her own life story as an early school-leaver and former care sector worker.”

Despite an internal battle post the local elections, Ms Rayner was subsequently appointed as Shadow Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Shadow Secretary of State for the Future of Work.

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Keir Starmer

Keir Starmer has come under severe pressure as leader (Image: GETTY)

Keir Starmer

Keir Starmer: The Hartlepool loss was a stunning loss (Image: GETTY)

Following the poor election performance in Chesham and Amersham, Sir Keir was forced to make further internal changes.

Former adviser Morgan McSweeney, who helped run Sir Keir leadership campaign, will now be moved to a new role.

This came just a day after two senior communications officers, Ben Nunn and Paul Ovenden, were also moved by Sir Keir.

One frontbench source said: “It’s just shocking. It just goes from bad to worse really, everyone is so down.

Keir Starmer

Keir Starmer: Chesham and Amersham electio nresult (Image: Express)

“You’ve got people now with majorities of 2,000-3,000 who think they’re toast. Starmer’s office is dysfunctional.”

Amid the internal party chaos, a recent poll from Savanta ComRes has found the party has fallen four percent from the week ending June 13.

In the poll conducted between June 18-20, the Tory party has risen by three percent and takes their lead over Labour to 14 points.

Keir Starmer

Keir Starmer: The by-election will be held on July 1 (Image: GETTY)

According to a Survation poll ahead of the Batley and Spen by-election, the Labour Party is expected to receive 41 percent of the votes and lose the seat.

Tory candidate, Ryan Stephenson is set to win with 47 percent in the poll conducted between June -17.

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: UK Feed

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