Jeremy Corbyn is on course to lead Labour to its worst ever set of general election results with the party on course to end up with just 191 seats, according to a bombshell exit poll.
If the exit poll proves to be true the party’s tally would be even worse than Labour’s previous low watermark under Michael Foot in 1983 when it crashed to just 209 MPs.
Mr Corbyn will now face immediate and intense pressure to quit as Labour leader after failing to get anywhere close to winning power in back to back elections.
The disastrous poll was greeted with dismay by shadow chancellor John McDonnell who said the numbers were ‘extremely disappointing’ as he blamed Brexit for the poor performance.
Labour is forecast to lose dozens of seats to the Conservatives, slumping to 191 seats – its lowest total in modern times.
The expected result is an emphatic rejection of Mr Corbyn’s socialist vision, handing Boris Johnson a majority in the House of Commons.
Defeat will be Mr Corbyn’s second in three years and will make it extremely difficult for him to survive as leader.
Labour is now on course for a brutal leadership battle as moderates and the hard-Left tussle for control of the party.
Jeremy Corbyn ‘s tenure as Labour leader looks to be over after the exit poll showed him on course to lose the general election
Labour grandee Lord Falconer said last week that Mr Corbyn should resign and be replaced ‘as quickly as we reasonably can’ if he loses to Mr Johnson.
A number of female MPs have been mentioned as possible successors, including Angela Rayner, Jess Phillips and Rebecca Long-Bailey.
Labour’s foreign affairs spokeswoman Emily Thornberry and North West Durham candidate Laura Pidcock could also enter the leadership race.
Elected leader in 2015 with little support from his own MPs, Mr Corbyn has faced repeated plots to remove him since then.
He confounded those critics with an unexpectedly strong performance in the 2017 election, gaining seats and denying Theresa May a majority.
But since then his party has been engulfed in an anti-Semitism crisis and Mr Corbyn has been widely criticised for his handling of it.
During the campaign, he failed to apologise to Jewish people in a stormy interview with Andrew Neil.
In addition, Mr Corbyn’s equivocal stance on Brexit has infuriated many Remainers who wanted him to support cancelling Brexit.
Under pressure from party activists, Mr Corbyn finally agreed to back a second referendum.
However, he drew fresh criticism for pledging to be ‘neutral’ during a second referendum campaign.
Opening the door to cancelling Brexit may also have cost Labour votes in some of its heartlands where it is set to lose seats.