London Mayoral election: What do the final polls predict for Sadiq Khan and Susan Hall?

Savanta poll predicted a tighter race between Conservative’s Susan Hall and Labour’s Sadiq Khan than expected

Barney Davis
Friday 03 May 2024 12:00 BST
London mayor Sadiq Khan casts vote in local election

With the voting booths now closed and the count furiously being verified the race is on to be the next Mayor of London.

Sadiq Khan, who is seeking his third term, is currently the favourite to win against his Conservative challenger Susan Hall.

But the Tories have been buoyed by what they see as a low voter turnout with just two million Londoners out of a possible six million registered placing an X on their ballot on Thursday.

Sadiq Khan is hoping for a third term
Sadiq Khan is hoping for a third term (EPA)

The Home Secretary accused Mr Khan of “falling asleep at the wheel” such was his initial lead but the race was “electrified” by a poll in the Standard which showed the gap between the pair narrowing to its smallest point just hours before the booths opened.

A Savanta survey for the Centre for London this week put the Labour mayor on 42 per cent and the Tory candidate breathing down his neck with 32 per cent and then Liberal Democrat candidate Rob Blackie in third with 10 per cent.

The results are a striking contrast with a separate YouGov poll earlier in the week which gives Mr Khan a huge 22-point lead.

Mr Khan told the EveningStandard he would happily take the narrowest of victories.

“I’m quite clear, as someone who used to captain our cricket team: a win is a win.”

Tory Susan Hall has narrowed the gap according to one poll
Tory Susan Hall has narrowed the gap according to one poll (Getty Images)

Mr Khan said his campaign and Labour activists “sent out a message of fairness, of equality and of hope. Whatever the results this weekend might bring, I am so proud of that.”

Ms Hall said on polling day: “Thank you to everyone who voted and all who came out and helped, I’m forever grateful. No matter the result, I’ll never stop listening to you and fighting for a better London for all of us.”

The Spectator reports that Ms Khan can afford to have a bad night and significantly underperform Labour but still claim a historic third term by 7 or 8 points.

If Ms Hall defeats Mr Khan, she will become the first woman to lead London as mayor and has a five-point plan for the capital. She vows to reduce crime, scrap Ulez, build “family homes”, and make London a “cleaner and greener city”.

But former Conservative party chair and peer Sayeeda Warsi criticised the Tory candidate, who has been accused of divisive politics and Islamophobia.

Ms Hall would be the first female mayor of London if she wins
Ms Hall would be the first female mayor of London if she wins (Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire)

Baroness Warsi - who served as Tory chair between 2010 and 2012 - said on X/Twitter: “Why is it that with every London Mayoral election we manage to find a candidate worse than the last and manage to sink that little bit more into gutter politics.”

The Mayoral race comes in a backdrop of terrible polling results for Rishi Sunak with the sharks circling and backbench Tories expected to challenge the prime minister’s leadership if a bad local election result veers into disaster.

Current polling ahead of a possible General Election puts the Conservatives lower than they were even under Mr Sunak’s predecessor Liz Truss.

A recent YouGov/Times voting intention poll put the Tories on 18%, down two points in the last month which is the lowest Conservative vote share of this Parliament – lower than under Ms Truss when it sank to 19 per cent. In stark contrast, Labour is riding high on 44 per cent amid rumours of potential leadership challenges for Mr Sunak from Kemi Badenoch and Penny Mordaunt.

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