Last week Labour ended the week which will go down in the history books with a 5 point lead over the Conservatives with 38% (+1) vs. 33% (-1) for the Conservatives. The Liberal Democrats rise to 12% (+1), with Green Party remaining on 6%.
Bye-bye Boris, Boris goodbye
Following Boris Johnson’s announcement that he intends to resign in the autumn of this year, three in five (61%) UK voters think he should step down immediately, and a caretaker primer minister be put in his place. Among 2019 Conservative voters, views are evenly split with 46% saying go now and 46% saying stay until a successor is chosen.
Almost a third (64%) disapprove of the way Boris Johnson is handling his job as Prime Minister – up 9 points in the last two weeks – with only 20% (-7) approving, giving him a net approval rating of -44% (-16). This is the worst approval rating we have ever recorded for Boris Johnson during his time as prime minister. Among current Conservative voters, the figures are 49% approve and 34% disapprove while 2019 Conservative voters are net negative with 35% approving and 48% disapproving.
Three in ten (30%) approve of the way Keir Starmer is handling his job as leader of the Labour Party – up 1 compared to two weeks ago – and almost two in five (37%) disapprove, giving him a net approval score of -7% (+1). Fieldwork was completed before news broke that Starmer and Angela Rayner would not be fined by Durham Police.
When asked who best prime minister would be, only 20% (-8) chose Boris Johnson compared to 28% (+1) who selected Keir Starmer. The response ‘none of these’ is still the most popular option with 41% (+8).
Thinking about Johnson’s replacement, when asked which prominent Tory MPs would make a good prime minister, Rishi Sunak and Sajid Javid came out on top, with Michael Gove and Priti Patel scoring the lowest.
Adam Drummond, head of political and social research at Opinium, said, “In the end it wasn’t just Conservative MPs who turned on their leader but Conservative voters as well. A majority of those who voted Tory in 2019 disapprove of the PM’s handling of things and think it’s right that he steps down.
“As a vast field of potential replacements begin their campaigns (almost too many to poll at once), Rishi Sunak appears to start most strongly.
“Although some of this is name recognition, it’s notable hat similarly well known figures like Jeremy Hunt, Michael Gove and Priti Patel all have far more negative perceptions. However, it cannot be overstated how fluid this situation is and how quickly things could change given how poorly known some of the candidates are.”