Labour MPs accuse Jeremy Corbyn of 'burying his head in the sand' after poor poll ratings

Laura Hughes
Leader of the Labour Party Jeremy Corbyn  - Copyright (c) 2017 Rex Features. No use without permission.

Jeremy Corbyn has been accused of "burying his head in the sand" by his own MPs after it was revealed that less than half of Labour voters believe he would make a better Prime Minister than Theresa May. 

Just 45 per cent of the party's supporters back their leader in a in a two-way contest between him and the current Prime Minister, according to the latest damning poll. 

Among all voters, 14 per cent of voters said they would choose the Labour leader, while 47 per cent backed Mrs May, according to the Opinium survey for The Observer. 

Prime Minister Theresa May in London Credit: EPA/ANDY RAIN

Last night Labour MPs called for new leadership and hit out at Mr Corbyn for refusing to take responsibility for his "terrible personal ratings."

Neil Coyle, the MP for Bermondsey & Old Southwark told the Telegraph: "Labour voters deserve better leadership. 

"Labour voters see the damage the Tories have done to the NHS, feel the care crisis up and down the country, experience the housing crisis firsthand, see police crippled by cuts and the Tories now attacking school funding.

"They know the problems but don't see Corbyn as a solution sadly. Only he can address the problem but has chosen to bury his head in the sand, taking no responsibility for his terrible personal ratings."

It came as a separate ComRes survey for the Independent and Sunday Mirror put the Tories 21-points ahead of Labour – the biggest lead for the party in government since 1983.

The headline findings put the Conservatives on 46 per cent and Labour on 25 per cent. 

Neil Coyle MP  Credit: Lucy Young/REX Shutterstock

They come just days after one of Mr Corbyn's own MPs claimed Labour lost their latest council seat because voters were put of by the current leadership. 

Tom Blenkinsop, the MP Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland, has called for new party leadership after the Conservatives won the Coulby Newham by-election in his constituency- with a swing of more than 8 per cent.

The MP for Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland said: "We lost due to the leader's name being mentioned on the doorstep as the reason why residents were not voting Labour.

"And I am certain this is not just the case here but across boroughs and constituencies the length and breadth of Great Britain."

Next month's local council elections will serve as a further test of Mr Corbyn's popularity, as voters across the country go to the polls. 

Experts have predicted big gains for both the Conservatives and Lib Dems, with Labour suffering losses of up to 50 seats.

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and shadow chancellor John McDonnell  Credit: Jonathan Brady/PA

The Observer poll found that when voters were asked which party was most trusted to lead Brexit negotiations, 35 per cent backed the Conservatives, with just 12 per cent backing Labour. 

Only 7 per cent of voters said they believed Labour have the best policies on immigration, the fourth most important issue to those questioned.

Health and Brexit remained the most important issues among voters, but terrorism climbed from fifth to third place in the aftermath of the attack at Westminster.

The online survey of 2,002 voters aged 18 and above was conducted between April 11-13. 

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