LEADING pollster John Curtice has said it remains to be seen whether or not Labour has “sealed the deal” with the electorate following their by-election victory in Rutherglen and Hamilton West.

Both Keir Starmer and Anas Sarwar hailed the historic win as a “seismic” victory after Michael Shanks was declared the new MP for the constituency.

He defeated the SNP’s Katy Loudon (below) by 17 845 votes to 8399.

However, speaking to the BBC’s Good Morning Scotland, Curtice said it was still “uncertain” what the result would mean.

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It was put to him by Martin Geissler that the public “don’t like” any of the options to choose from when they head to the polls.

Curtice replied: “That I think is fair comment. Labour have got their conference and they will celebrate this at the weekend.

“But you know a poll out in The Times this morning underlines something that lots of polls are saying.

“People were being asked ‘to what extent do you think Mr Sunak and Mr Starmer have a clear vision for the country’.

READ MORE: LIVE: Reaction as Labour win Rutherglen and Hamilton West by-election

“Rishi Sunak it’s only about 21% but Keir Starmer it’s only about 22% and I think although Labour clearly under Sir Keir Starmer have made themselves sufficiently acceptable, that when voters find themselves facing a government, particularly in London, in which they are deeply unhappy, Labour are regarded as the point of refuge for their protest.

“But as to whether or as yet Labour have necessarily sealed the deal with the electorate, that I think looks uncertain.

“If Humza Yousaf can turn around his government, can unite his party, if the economy turns around then we may well discover that both the SNP and the Conservatives can indeed recover ground because many of the voters Labour have at the moment are not necessarily strongly committed to Labour, they are saying much more about we don’t like anything else.”

However, Curtice also said that Labour poses a "serious challenge" to the SNP.

"This result very firmly confirms the direction of travel indicated by the polls and that Labour do pose a serious challenge to the SNP's continue dominance at Westminster," he said. 

"That potentially has implications for the overall outcome in the general elections because if that were to happen, they would find it easier to get an overall majority. 

READ MORE: Stephen Flynn: SNP must 'reflect quickly' on by-election loss

"But also the kinds of increases that Labour have registered their vote in this by-election, what they achieved in Selby, this is the kind of results that you see in advance of general elections when parties are on course to win. 

"So, obviously, 12 months to go and all the rest of it, but I think one has to say that not only now are Labour clearly posing a serious, serious threat to the continuation of the deeply unpopular Conservative government south of the Border, but they are also now posing a threat to the relatively unpopular - at least by its historical standards - SNP government north of the Border. 

"To that extent, I think they can reasonably claim to have done rather well."