Labour have a 17pt voting intention lead over the Conservative Party, according to the latest polling from Savanta.
The poll, conducted over the weekend (12-14 May), shows Labour on 45% of the vote and the Conservatives on 28%, the former up one points, and the latter down two, from the previous week.
This 17pt lead represents the largest Labour lead in a Savanta poll for four weeks, and comes after the news over the weekend that Boris Johnson, and two of his allies, will be resigning their Westminster seats with immediate effect, thus triggering three tricky by-elections for their party.
The poll also assesses which of the two party leaders would make the best Prime Minister. Keir Starmer sustains a three point lead over Sunak (38% Starmer vs 35% Sunak), only the second time he has led the Best PM metric since Liz Truss was Prime Minister.
Starmer’s net favourability, along with Sunak’s, remains virtually unchanged. The Labour leader’s net favourability stands at -1, down one point from last month, while Sunak’s stands at -11 up one in the same period.
Boris Johnson’s stands at -23 among the public, and +15 among 2019 Conservative voters, each being 12pts lower than Sunak’s equivalent figures.
And among those who would vote Conservative if an election were tomorrow, Sunak’s net favourability stands at +71, 30 points higher than Johnson (+40).
Chris Hopkins, Political Research Director at Savanta said, “Maybe now, finally, Boris Johnson will go away and let Rishi Sunak get on with governing.
“While a three-point increase in the Labour lead cannot be attributed to Johnson’s resignation as an MP – it’s a change well within the margin of error – the short-term frustration for Sunak that Johnson is once again dominating the headlines, reminding the public of his (and his party’s) failings in office may be offset by a long-term gain.”
“Sunak has needed to distance himself from Johnson and Truss ever since he became Prime Minister if he is able to repair the Conservative brand, and Johnson being out of Parliament is probably better for Sunak than him causing trouble on the backbenches.
“Of course, it’s hard to imagine Johnson disappearing from the picture completely, especially with the Covid inquiry now underway, but there certainly could be an advantage for Sunak that Johnson isn’t in the political foreground for a while.”