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UK election: Top 5 biggest landslides since 1900

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If the polls are even close to correct, Keir Starmer’s Labour Party will win Thursday’s U.K. general election with one of the largest majorities in British history.

Survation’s final mega poll released Tuesday gave Labour a majority of 318, winning 484 out of the 650 seats in parliament. Other polls have shown similarly large drubbings on the horizon for Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s Conservative Party.

How does this compare to elections in decades gone by? With the help of the House of Commons Library, POLITICO has compiled the top five biggest election victories for a single party since 1900.

(Elections in the 19th century are slightly trickier to measure as women did not have the right to vote until 1918 and the eligible electorate was far smaller.)

1924 — Tory majority of 209

The Tories under Stanley Baldwin enjoyed a huge parliamentary majority after defeating Labour Prime Minister Ramsay MacDonald in a vote of no confidence in parliament, regaining power on a message of free trade. They were banished from power by Labour just five years later (sound familiar?).

1997 — Labour majority of 179

Tony Blair led Labour out of opposition after 18 years to sweep John Major’s Conservatives from government. Campaigning under the banner of New Labour, he successfully targeted Tory voters with reassurance and trust. Blair was also helped by widespread sleaze in the Tory Party and a feeling the party had come to the end of the line in government (sound familiar?).

2001 — Labour majority of 167

This election was largely a repeat of 1997 as only 29 seats changed hands. Dubbed the “quiet landslide,” the assumption of another Labour victory meant turnout dropped to 59 percent, the lowest since universal suffrage began in 1918.

1945 — Labour majority of 145

At the last election to be held in July, Clement Attlee’s Labour Party was seen as the party to help rebuild Britain after World War II, leading to the creation of the NHS and welfare state. Attlee was defeated just six years later with WWII leader Winston Churchill returning triumphantly for another term in office.

1983 — Tory majority of 144

This election was the first of two landslide victories for Margaret Thatcher’s Conservatives. The U.K.’s first female prime minister was helped by a trio of factors: success in the Falklands war against Argentina, divisions among her opponents by the creation of the Social Democratic Party and Labour running on an extremely left-wing manifesto, dubbed the “longest suicide note in history.”