• Business committee chair Iain Wright says won’t seek re-election in Hartlepool
  • Latest sign of an exodus as Labour faces obliteration in snap general election
  • Jeremy Corbyn’s party has been trailing Conservatives by up to 21 points in polls

James Tapsfield, Political Editor For Mailonline

Another senior Labour MP quit today as the party faces obliteration at the hands of the Tories.

Iain Wright, chair of the business committee, announced that he will not be fighting for re-election to his Hartlepool seat on June 8.

It is the latest sign of an exodus from Labour in the wake of Theresa May‘s bombshell decision to call a snap poll. 

Iain Wright, 44, narrowly fought off a challenge from Ukip to secure a 3,000 majority in Hartlepool in 2015 - but it appears he has concluded the Tory tidal wave will be too much

Iain Wright, 44, narrowly fought off a challenge from Ukip to secure a 3,000 majority in Hartlepool in 2015 - but it appears he has concluded the Tory tidal wave will be too much

Iain Wright, 44, narrowly fought off a challenge from Ukip to secure a 3,000 majority in Hartlepool in 2015 – but it appears he has concluded the Tory tidal wave will be too much

The party's ratings under Jeremy Corbyn (pictured leaving his London home today) have been woeful - with the most recent showing it is 21 points behind the Conservatives

The party's ratings under Jeremy Corbyn (pictured leaving his London home today) have been woeful - with the most recent showing it is 21 points behind the Conservatives

The party’s ratings under Jeremy Corbyn (pictured leaving his London home today) have been woeful – with the most recent showing it is 21 points behind the Conservatives

Mr Wright announced that he would not be seeking re-election in Hartlepool this morning

Mr Wright announced that he would not be seeking re-election in Hartlepool this morning

Mr Wright announced that he would not be seeking re-election in Hartlepool this morning

The party’s ratings under Jeremy Corbyn have been woeful – with the most recent showing it is 21 points behind the Conservatives. That could mean losing around 70 MPs, or a third of the current total.

Hartlepool has been Labour since the 1970s, but has become increasingly tight. 

Mr Wright, 44, narrowly fought off a challenge from Ukip to secure a 3,000 majority in 2015 – but it appears he has concluded the Tory tidal wave will be too much to resist.

In a statement today he said: ‘It has been an enormous privilege to serve my home town in Parliament.

‘I have now been an MP for nearly a third of my life.

‘I would like to do other things and now is a good opportunity to do so.

‘I would like to thank my constituents for giving me the honour of allowing me to be their Member of Parliament since 2004.’

Theresa May, pictured giving a BBC radio interview today, is hoping to gobble up Labour seats  following her bombshell decision to call a snap poll

Theresa May, pictured giving a BBC radio interview today, is hoping to gobble up Labour seats  following her bombshell decision to call a snap poll

Theresa May, pictured giving a BBC radio interview today, is hoping to gobble up Labour seats  following her bombshell decision to call a snap poll

Former home secretary Alan Johnson and moderate MP Tom Blenkinsop both announced they would not be seeking relection yesterday as the implications of a snap election hit home. 

The gulf between Conservative and Labour in the polls means that for the first time since 1997, scores of constituencies are in play rather than just a handful of marginal swing seats. 

THE LABOUR MPs WHO HAVE ALREADY SAID THEY WILL STAND DOWN AT JUNE POLL 

Alan Johnson 

Tom Blenkinsop

Pat Glass 

Iain Wright 

Top Tory targets will include Brexit supporting Stoke on Trent South, Halifax and Middlesbrough South.

Labour MP John Woodcock, defending a narrow majority in Barrow and Furness, said last night that he could not bring himself to vote for Mr Corbyn to become PM. Neighbouring Copeland fell to the Tories at a by-election in February.

Gains from Labour will be crucial for Mrs May as she faces a different battle in a clutch of seats won by David Cameron in 2015 from the Lib Dems.

Two years ago the Tories pulled off shock wins in Twickenham and Richmond in leafy west London, and Lewes and St Ives in Cornwall. 

All four were snatched from the Liberal Democrats and Mrs May will have to fight a different battle to keep hold of them.

Labour grandee Alan Johnson is to stand down as an MP at the election, spelling more trouble for the party

Labour grandee Alan Johnson is to stand down as an MP at the election, spelling more trouble for the party

Labour grandee Alan Johnson is to stand down as an MP at the election, spelling more trouble for the party

 

 

 

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