Home Business News More than half of UK voters do not think current Covid-19 inquiry will be a success

More than half of UK voters do not think current Covid-19 inquiry will be a success

by LLB political Reporter
12th Jun 23 10:10 am

With one of the most important inquiries in recent British history on the cusp of holding public hearings, Opinium’s latest poll reveals that almost three in five (58%) British voters are not confident the Covid-19 inquiry will be a success.

A majority back inquiry chair, Baroness Hallett, over the dispute on who should decide what messages and notes are relevant to the inquiry, with two thirds (65%) saying all the messages should be handed over, decreasing to 46% among Tory voters, and to 80% among Labour voters.

Thinking back, over half (53%) of UK adults think the pandemic was handled badly by the government. This opinion is split along party lines, with three quarters (75%) of Conservative voters saying it was handled well (76%), compared to a quarter (26%) Labour voters.

Labour lead dips

Looking at current voting intention, Labour’s lead on the Conservatives has fallen to 12 points (-2) compared to two weeks ago, despite Rishi Sunak’s approval rating dipping 4 points.

Labour has 41% of the vote (-2), whilst the Conservatives have made gains of +1, with 29%. The Liberal Democrats have 11% (+1) and the SNP remain on 3% (n/c). Reform UK has seen no change, with 6%, and the Green Party also have no change, with 7%.

Compared to a fortnight ago, Keir Starmer still leads Sunak on approval by 13 points; but approval ratings on both leaders are down, Sunak by 4 points, and Starmer by 3 points. Both approval ratings are lower than they generally have been over the past three months. 26% approve of Rishi Sunak’s performance as prime minister, 46% disapprove giving him -20% net. For Keir Starmer the figures are 28% approving, 35% disapproving, -7% net. Starmer still leads Sunak on the ‘who would make the best prime minister’ question, with 28% vs 25% – although this lead is down 2 points vs. the last poll.

Labour Party leads the Conservative Party on all tested characteristics

The Labour Party leads the Conservative Party on all characteristics; notably on being in touch with ordinary people (61%), representing what most people think (44%), and having the nation’s best interest at heart (41%). It also has a 30-point net lead on competence, albeit more due to the Conservatives’ dire ratings more generally.

Adam Drummond, head of political and social research at Opinium said: “Rishi Sunak’s reputation was made by the pandemic and voters still give him more credit for his role in it than any other member of the government, or indeed any other public figure we tested apart from Chris Whitty. But while most voters have paid very little attention to the story about the public inquiry, there’s a risk to the government of tarnishing the prime minister’s record by picking this fight.”

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