The real reason Labour lost the election? The over-65s refused to vote for them

While early post-mortems for Labour's crushing election defeat have focused on its failure to reach out to middle-class voters, new analysis suggests the blame may lay elsewhere.

According to Professor John Curtice, who carried out the accurate exit poll on election day, Labour's real failure was its spectacular lack of appeal to older voters.

Details of the scale of Labour’s rejection by the over-65s will make grim reading for the contenders vying to succeed Ed Miliband – not least because they register the highest turnout at elections.

According to pre-election polling by Ipsos Mori, Labour was backed by 43 per cent of 18- to 24-year-olds, but just 23 per cent of over-65s.

The Tories were supported by 47 per cent of over-65s – twice the number who favoured Labour – and 27 per cent of the youngest voters.

For the most part the older the voter, the more difficult the party found it to retain and attract their support.

  • Prof Curtice
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