Grant Shapps warns election could hand Labour ‘unchecked power’ and ‘super majority’

Grant Shapps has urged voters not to hand Labour a “super majority” at the general election.

The defence secretary warned that doing so could hand Keir Starmer “unchecked” power in government as he made the case for a “proper system of accountability”

Shapps was asked on Times Radio about Conservatives’ social media adverts which suggest the party could be reduced to just 57 seats in the next parliament. 

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He said: “I think the simple point is that if you want to make sure that in this next government, whoever forms it, that there is a proper system of accountability, then we would argue that you don’t want to have somebody receive a super majority.”

He added: “And in this case, of course, the concern would be that if Keir Starmer were to go into No 10 — it will either be Rishi Sunak or Keir Starmer, there is no other outcome to this election — and if that power was in some way unchecked it would be very bad news for people in this country.”

Shapps said this would amount to “a blank cheque approach, allowing someone to do anything they wanted, particularly when their particular set of plans are so vague.”

Over recent days, a Conservative online ad campaign has taken to warning voters that Labour could win with a landslide in the upcoming election.

According to a report in the Financial Times, Conservative social media advertisements published since Friday last week have been urging people against voting for smaller parties, warning that doing so could give Labour a “massive majority”.

One ad said voting for Sir Ed Davey’s Liberal Democrats or Nigel Farage’s Reform would “hand Keir Starmer a blank cheque.”

Labour leads the Conservatives by about 20 points in opinion polls, a gap that has shown little sign of narrowing ahead of the election. 

As such, recent online ads and the defence secretary’s comments on Wednesday morning will spark accusations that the ruling party is in effect conceding defeat. 

However, Shapps told Times Radio that there was still “everything to fight for” and the “polls have been wrong before”.

Shapps went on to warn of the consequences of a Labour “super majority”, saying such an outcome would put the country in a “dangerous place”.

The defence secretary said: “It is a fact of course that if you ended up with a party with massive majority, unchecked power, able to do anything they wanted, and with the instincts of, we would argue, with Keir Starmer’s party on all sorts of things from raising people’s tax to their lack of support for increased defence spending, we think that would be a dangerous place to put this country.”

He added: “The polls have been wrong before. But I think it is perfectly legitimate to say the country doesn’t function well when you get majorities the size of Blair’s or even bigger and we would say there are a lot of very good, hard working MPs who can hold the government of the day to account and we’d say those are Conservative MPs.” is the UK’s leading digital-only political website. Subscribe to our daily newsletter for all the latest election news and analysis.