Survey shows British PM’s popularity tumbling down

LONDON: Rishi Sunak’s popularity is sinking as the Government continues to be hit by controversies in the middle of the cost-of-living crisis and wave of strikes, a new poll revealed on Monday.
The Ipsos survey for the Standard found that 32 per cent of adults believe he has what it takes to be a good Prime Minister, down ten points from November, with 43 per cent disagreeing, up nine points.
He has fallen behind Sir Keir Starmer, on 36 per cent for having PM qualities, and whose score on this question has been nudging up since last April. Mr Sunak has also seen his lead as the “most capable PM” evaporate, with the Labour leader now ahead. A third of the public back the Tory leader as the best person to lead the country, down from 41 per cent two months ago.
In contrast, Sir Keir is on 39 per cent, up from 35 per cent. The Prime Minister’s ratings have slipped as the Government has so far failed to find a way to end the widespread strikes gripping Britain, with inflation also biting into the budgets of millions of households hit by high energy bills.
He vowed on his arrival in Downing Street in October to embed “integrity, professionalism and accountability at every level” of his Government. But the Tories have been hit by several growing storms at Westminster including over now sacked Tory party chairman Nadhim Zahawi’s tax affairs, a string of claims of bullying against Deputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab, and Boris Johnson’s links to BBC chairman Richard Sharp appointed when he was PM.
All of the individuals caught up in the furores have denied any wrongdoing. Fifty-five per cent of adults now say they are dissatisfied with the PM, up from 49 per cent in December, with 26 per cent now satisfied compared to 28 per cent last month. So, his net satisfaction rating has dropped from -21 to -29. For Sir Keir, 37 per cent are satisfied, 40 per cent dissatisfied, a net score of -3, slightly up from -6. But a large chunk of the public still do not know what the two main party leaders stand for despite their numerous TV appearances, speeches and clashes at Prime Minister’s Questions.
Forty-four per cent say they do not know what Sir Keir stands for, down five points from July, and 40 per cent say the same about Mr Sunak, unchanged from the summer.
The poll also found: Labour remains a startling 25 points ahead of the Conservatives. The Tories are on 26 per cent (+3 points from December), Labour 51 per cent (+2), and the Liberal Democrats nine (-4). Just two in ten adults believe the Government is competent, with 62 per cent disagreeing. –Agencies