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This Poll Shows Why The Conservative Party Is Set to Lose the Next General Election
Labour's claims that Rishi Sunak's Party crashed the economy and caused a 'mortgage bombshell' are cutting through with voters
In this week’s Bienkov Briefing:
VOTERS BLAME THE GOVERNMENT FOR SOARING MORTGAGE COSTS
EVEN CONSERVATIVES SAY PARTY HAS LEFT THEM WORSE OFF
VOTERS DON’T CARE ABOUT CULTURE WAR ISSUES
VOTERS ACCUSE GOVERNMENT OF ‘BETRAYING’ NHS WORKERS
When it comes to the next election, only one issue appears to really matter.
And according to an exclusive new poll for the Byline Supplement, it’s an issue that the Government is badly losing the argument on.
Asked by pollsters Omnisis to choose one of ten issues that will be most important in deciding who they will vote for at the next election, 51% of voters picked the economy and cost of living.
Nothing else even came close.
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Indeed, with the single exception of the NHS, which was picked as the number one issue by 15% of voters, no other issue even made it into double figures.
For the former Chancellor Rishi Sunak, this might appear to be an advantage.
However, our poll found that voters overwhelming believe that Sunak’s party has done a bad job of managing the economy.
Asked whether they believed they were personally financially better off as a result of the Conservatives being in government for the past 13 years, just 22% agreed, compared to 57% who believe they are now worse off as a result. Even Conservative voters were more likely to say they felt worse off than better off as a result of their own party being in Government for the past decade.
Meanwhile voters were almost twice as likely to say that Labour were now better placed to run the economy than the Conservatives, by 39% to 22%.
This collapse in public confidence in the Conservative Party’s handling of the economy follows more than a decade of flatlining economic growth, rising dissatisfaction over Brexit and the surge in mortgage rates that began under Liz Truss.
On the latter issue our poll finds that voters now overwhelmingly blame the Government.
Asked who was most responsible for rising mortgage costs, a whopping 54% said they blamed the Government, with just 16% agreeing with Sunak that the rise was mostly due to international economic factors.
Even more worryingly for Sunak, large numbers of voters now say that rising mortgage costs will make them less likely to vote for the Conservatives.
Overall 37% of all voters said rising rates made them less likely to vote for Rishi Sunak’s party, including 14% of those voters who currently say they still plan to back them.
A Pointless War
By contrast our poll found little obvious interest in any of the big ‘culture war’ issues currently being pushed by Sunak’s party and its media supporters.
Following a week in which the High Court ruled that the Government’s Rwanda plan was unlawful, our poll found that just 9% of voters pick immigration and asylum as the number one issue deciding their vote.
With other recent polls suggesting Labour now has a comfortable lead on the question of who is best placed to manage migration, this looks like an unlikely issue for Sunak to be able to turn his party’s fortunes around on.
Our poll also found little public interest in the issue of gender identity, which ministers sought to highlight in recent weeks, following heavily debunked claims about school children ‘identifying as cats’.
Just 2% of voters picked gender and LGBQT+ concerns as the issue most likely to determine their vote at the next election.
Voters appear to be similarly uninterested in so-called free-speech issues. Despite Sunak’s recent appointment of a ‘free speech tsar’ to tackle alleged ‘cancel culture’ in universities, our poll found that just 2% pick this as the most important issue affecting their vote.
Voters Say Rishi Sunak and Boris Johnson 'Betrayed' NHS Workers
Rishi Sunak this week revealed his long-awaited plan for the NHS workforce.
While Sunak’s plan was welcomed by some health groups, new polling conducted by Omnisis earlier this month for the Byline Supplement suggests that voters believe that NHS workers have been badly let down by the Government.
According to the poll, a large majority of voters say the Government has “betrayed” NHS workers since the pandemic.
The survey found that 71% agree that nurses and doctors have been “betrayed by the Government since the pandemic” with just 14% disagreeing.
Both Sunak and Johnson publicly supported the “Clap for our Carers” campaign which encouraged members of the public to stand outside their homes and applaud NHS workers.
However, the Government has since become embroiled in a series of pay disputes with nursing and doctors unions, over plans for further real-terms cuts to their pay.
Ministers have previously launched legal action against proposed strikes by unions, with the threat of workers being struck off if they take part in illegal strikes.
Meanwhile the Prime Minister this week signalled that he could even block pay rises recommended by the independent pay review bodies, despite previously suggesting that he would be bound by them.
Asked by Omnisis whether the Government had lived up to the “spirit” of the ‘Clap for our Carers campaign, just 19% said they had, compared to 65% who said they hadn’t.
Flogging a Dead Cat
Taken together, these poll results paint an electoral picture almost perfectly designed to remove the incumbent Government.
With the economy so dominating public concerns, voter dissatisfaction with both the Government and the Conservative Party on that central issue means that Labour must now be overwhelming favourites to win the next general election.
With similar dissatisfaction reflected on public attitudes towards the Government’s handling of the NHS and immigration, and widespread indifference on the other big ‘culture war’ issues pushed by ministers, it is little surprise that Keir Starmer’s party now has a such a hefty lead in the polls.
Indeed according to this week’s Omnisis poll, Labour now leads the Conservatives by 19 points on 43% to 24%.
While much can still change before the general election, there seems little in these numbers to give much hope for either Sunak or his party.
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