Rishi Sunak Tells Tories To 'Go And Smash It' At Local Elections

Prime minister launches May 2 campaign as poll reveals he is deeply unpopular.
DARREN STAPLES via Getty Images

Rishi Sunak has urged Tory members to “go and smash it” at the local elections, as a new poll revealed the prime minister’s abysmal personal popularity rating.

Voters across England and Wales will go to the polls on May 2, in what will be seen as a crucial test for the government ahead of the general election.

It is widely assumed the local elections will be catastrophic for the Tories, who face losing around half of their council seats.

A bad showing for the party has also been identified as a potential trigger for rebel Tories to try and oust Sunak as leader, in one last throw of the dice.

Labour has held a constant and comfortable lead in the polls, with Keir Starmer looking to be on course to become prime minister.

Speaking at a campaign stop in Derbyshire on Friday, Sunak insisted “our plan is working”.

“We also have an opportunity to send a message to Keir Starmer. he is arrogantly taking the British people for granted,” he said. “Assuming he can just stroll into No.10.”

“This May we have that opportunity. We must vote. We must be able to say you can’t take the British people for fools.

Sunak added: “Let’s get out there, let’s go and smash it.”

It came as a YouGov survey showed Sunak has a net favourability rating on -50, compared to Starmer who had a rating of -18.

Sunak has until January 2025 to hold the general election, but it is widely assumed he will go to the country in October or November.

He has already ruled out holding the election on May 2, the same day as the local elections.


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