POLLING ahead of the general election puts the Liberal Democrats on top in the three-way marginal seat of Portsmouth South.
Gerald Vernon-Jackson would be the third MP from a different party representing the constituency since 2015 if Survation polling proves true.
The Liberal Democrats candidate, leader of Portsmouth City Council, warned it would be ‘stupid’ to be confident from the result.
But he said it was encouraging and confirms a swing back to the Lib Dems, who won back the council in 2018 with a minority administration.
‘The thing I think is interesting is it’s a real poll, it’s not a projection. It’s speaking to real people, real voters in Portsmouth South,’ Cllr Vernon-Jackson said.
Portsmouth South was won by Labour’s Stephen Morgan in 2017 from the Conservative Party’s Flick Drummond.
Mrs Drummond had taken the seat from disgraced MP Mike Hancock in 2015.
Survation telephoned 406 adults in Portsmouth between October 28-29 and published the findings today.
Pollsters asked: ‘If there were a general election held tomorrow and the following candidates stood in your Portsmouth South constituency, which party would you vote for?’
The result in vote share was:
:: Lib Dems - 30 per cent (+13 from 2017)
:: Conservative - 27 per cent (-11)
:: Labour - 24 per cent (-17)
:: Brexit Party - 14 per cent (new)
:: Another party - 6 per cent
Conservatives fear Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage’s decision to stand 600 candidates will split the Leave vote, putting Labour and the Lib Dems ahead.
Sharing the poll on Twitter, Portsmouth North MP Penny Mordaunt called for people to back the Tory’s Portsmouth South candidate - Cllr Donna Jones.
Ms Mordaunt said: ‘And here we have it. The Brexit Party are entitled to run but only way we get Brexit done is with a Conservative government, and that means @DonnaJones4MP has to win Portsmouth South.’
Incumbent Mr Morgan said: ‘Pollsters have already rubbished this data, with only 406 people surveyed. The only valid poll is that on Thursday, December 12.’
He added: ‘With my record of delivery as the Portsmouth South MP, and a promise of so much more, I hope the people of Portsmouth will put their trust in me again in the forthcoming general election.’
The Brexit Party won 18,315 votes out of 46,664 cast across Portsmouth in the EU election in May this year.
The party’s candidate is Susan Lloyd. All known candidates were contacted by The News about the poll.