Opinium’s latest poll reveals that in the last two weeks, Labour’s lead has dropped by two points to 14, with 43% of the vote share compared to 29% for the Conservatives. The Liberal Democrats have 8% of the vote share, Reform UK and the Green Party have 6%.
Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s net approval rating has dipped from +2% to -4%, 30% approve of the job he is doing while 34% disapprove. Labour leader Keir Starmer is on +5%, 33% approve while 28% disapprove, virtually unchanged on the last poll.
On who would make the best Prime Minister, the two men are tied on 28% each with 26% choosing ‘none of these’.
Support for a “Swiss-style relationship” with the EU
Looking at attitudes toward the UK’s relationship with the EU, over half (55%) of UK voters support a “Swiss-style relationship”, while 21% oppose it. The “Swiss-style” relationship was described as involving:
- access to the European single market
- participates in EU research and education programmes
- removal of all documentary and identity checks and most physical checks on goods
- accepting some EU legislation as part of the closer relationship
- being part of the Schengen free travel area and free movement
- stay outside of the European Union
Over half (51%) of Conservative voters supported this idea, vs a third (33%) who opposed it, while over two thirds (67%) of Labour voters supported it, vs one in seven (14%) who oppose the idea.
Looking at how support falls when considering Brexit voter lines, Remain voters supported it by 73% to 9%, while Leave voters supported it by 41% to 35%.
When looking at attitudes toward Brexit, two thirds (66%) say Brexit has gone badly so far, vs only 22% who say it has gone well. Over a third (34%) want to rejoin the EU, while 25% want to stay outside but have a closer relationship with them than we have now. One in seven (15%) want things to remain as they are and 14% want a more distant relationship.
Mixed views on rail strikes, sympathy for striking nurses
With people likely starting to consider their travel plans for Christmas, there are mixed feelings about rail workers going on strike, with 43% opposing the strike over December and January, and 37% supporting it.
Looking at who the public think is responsible for the strike action, 37% think the trade unions are most responsible vs. 23% saying the government and 17% saying the train companies.
Considering the nurses strike also scheduled for this month, over half (57%) support nurses going on strike for 2 days vs. 30% who are opposed. Again, looking at where the blame lies for the nurses’ strike, UK voters think the government is more to blame, with 42% saying it is the government’s fault, 23% saying the trade unions and 9% saying the blame lies with NHS senior management.
Adam Drummond, Head of Political and Social Research at Opinium said, “Is Brexit burning out as a divisive issue? Most people think Brexit is going badly and has been bad for a range of things like prices, incomes and the economy.
“The only age group where fewer than 60% say it’s going badly are those over 65. Unfortunately for the Conservatives, those that think it’s going well are a core part of their base while for Labour they are a core part of the group they are trying to win over.
“Nevertheless, the fact is that we seem to be edging towards a consensus in support of normalizing the UK-EU relationship and away from the constant conflict of recent years.”