Prime Minister Rishi Sunak with former Tory Minister for Immigration Robert Jenrick. (Picture: UK Government on Flickr)

It seemed impossible for Conservative prospects to plunge further. But a major opinion poll last weekend showed the Tories are on track to win fewer than 100 seats at the next election.
 
A seat-by-seat analysis based on a survey of 15,000 voters sees Rishi Sunak’s governing party winning in just 98 constituencies. That’s compared to Labour’s 468, the Sunday Times reported. 
 
Cabinet ministers projected to lose their seats include home secretary James Cleverly, defence secretary Grant Shapps, and the Commons leader Penny Mordaunt.
 
The forecast even suggests Sunak is at risk of losing his own constituency, to Labour, with his lead of less than 2.5 percentage points.
 
Jeremy Hunt, the chancellor, has a one-point lead over the Liberal Democrats in his new seat of Godalming & Ash.
 
In Wales and Scotland, the Conservatives would see a complete wipeout, winning no seats, according to the report. 
 
The analysis gives the Scottish National Party 41 seats and Plaid Cymru two seats. The Tories would have no seats in London. 
 
If local and mayoral elections on 2 May suggest this poll might be right, the possibility of Sunak facing a leadership challenge would rise.
 
And right wing papers are fuelling the speculation. The Telegraph quote one unnamed Tory MP saying, “Independent mega-polls are showing we face an extinction-level event.”
 
The poll will encourage even more brutal Tory policies. It suggests racist party Reform UK would score 8.5 percent nationally and come second in seven seats.
 
So, many Tories say the solution is to do a deal with Reform to stand down in some areas or absorb some of its polices.
 
One foul indication of that was the call from ex-immigration minister Robert Jenrick to set up a “league table” of the nationalities of people convicted of criminal offences.
 
 Jenrick has submitted an amendment to the government’s Criminal Justice Bill, saying the data would be used to shape deportation and visa policies.
 
“We would want to apply a higher level of scrutiny to nationalities that are higher risk,” he said.
 
It would be bound to lead to increased racism against whichever nationalities were deemed to be crime-prone.
 
Such figures reflect the prejudices and racism of the cops and the judicial system.
 
This foul government totters on because although there is mass revolt over Palestine, trade union leaders and Labour don’t encourage that movement. 
 
They also fail to link it to all the other attacks from the class enemy in Downing Street. That lets the Tories stagger on causing yet more destruction.
Tories set to further criminalise homeless people 
The government has “paused” the progress of its criminal justice bill though parliament after an internal revolt over attacks on homeless people.
 
The bill is designed to ramp up police powers still further and impose harsher sentences.
 
It was first brought to parliament by former home secretary Suella Braverman—who branded rough sleeping a “lifestyle choice”. 
 
Among many other measures, the bill contains new powers for police and local authorities to enforce against so-called “nuisance rough sleeping” in England and Wales.
 
These powers include being moved on, a fine up to £2,500 and even imprisonment.
 
The plans to criminalise homelessness have disturbed even some Tories who are quite happy to back every other rancid measure from the government.
 
Sleeping rough has been a criminal offence since 1824. Under the Vagrancy Act, people sleeping on the streets could be moved on or fined up to £1,000.
 
Parliament voted to repeal this act in February 2022. But the repeal has not yet been “enacted”, meaning the Vagrancy Act is technically still in force. 
 
If MPs pass the criminal justice bill, it would make so-called “nuisance” rough sleeping a criminal offence. 
 
This leaves the door open for anyone sleeping rough to be criminalised based on a cop’s judgement about how they look or act.
 
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