Britain’s opposition Labour Party has widened its lead over Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s Conservative Party in an opinion poll that also showed Labour leader Keir Starmer’s personal ratings up sharply.

The Observer said the poll, conducted by Opinium, put support for Labour at 44%, up two points from a week ago, before Labour’s annual conference, compared with an unchanged 28% for the Conservatives who held their conference earlier in October.

The newspaper said its poll showed the proportion of voters who saw Starmer as a “prime minister in waiting” rose to 38% from 30%.

Sunak is expected to call a national election next year – the deadline is January 2025 – and opinion polls have consistently shown his Conservatives lagging behind Labour.

Starmer used his conference speech this week to promise more home-building and get the economy growing more quickly.

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