Majority of Britons expect Rishi Sunak to lose next General Election

A majority expect Rishi Sunak and the Conservatives to lose the next General Election according to the latest Ipsos poll.

The author(s)

  • Gideon Skinner Public Affairs
  • Keiran Pedley Public Affairs
  • Cameron Garrett Public Affairs
  • Ben Roff Public Affairs
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  • 55% think Sunak unlikely to win next election. 28% say likely.
  • Clear majorities more worried about being able to afford everyday essentials (62%) and bills (61%) following Autumn Statement.
  • Half think Starmer is ready to be PM (49%) but 39% say he is not.

New polling by Ipsos for the Sunday Express shows Britons are split when considering how well Rishi Sunak is performing as Prime Minister. Now, 28% say he is doing a good job, up from 21% at the start of the month, while around a quarter (24%) believe he is performing badly (down 6 points).

To what extent, would you say [...] has done a good job or bad job as Prime Minister, or neither? % Very or fairly good job / % Very or fairly bad job  Rishi Sunak 24-25 November 2022 28% / 24% Liz Truss 19-20 October 2022 8% / 76% Boris Johnson 5-6 July 2022 26% / 56%

Compared to his predecessors, Sunak is doing far better than Liz Truss, only 8% said she was doing a good job in late-October (76% said bad), while a similar proportion said Boris Johnson was performing well at the start of July (26%). However, far more said Mr Johnson was doing a bad job (56%) at the time than Sunak today. Sunak trails Starmer slightly, 35% say Keir Starmer would do a good job as Prime Minister, while 25% expect him to perform poorly.

Following the Autumn Statement earlier this month, many Britons appear to be more worried about cost of living than less. More than 3 in 5 say they are now more worries about being able to afford everyday essentials (62%) or paying their bills (61%) while majorities are more concerned about being able to pay their mortgage (57% of those who have bought a house on a mortgage), the quality of public services they use (55%) and how much tax they pay (53%). Around half of those renting a property (49%) are more worried about their ability to pay rent while 3 in 10 of those working are more worried about keeping their job.

What’s coming next?

Looking towards the next general election, few believe Rishi Sunak will win the next General Election. While 28% think it is likely that Sunak will win, more than half think it unlikely (55%).

How likely or unlikely do you think it is that Rishi Sunak will win the next General Election? % Very or Fairly likely / % Very or fairly unlikely  7-8 June '22 / Johnson	30% / 59% 14-17 Oct '22 / Truss 13% / 78% 31 Oct - 3 Nov '22 / Sunak 27% 53% 24-25 Nov '22 / Sunak 28% 55%

This remains steady in comparison to the start of the month (27% likely, 53% unlikely).  Again, Sunak registers better numbers than Liz Truss. Just 13% thought she was likely to win the next election in October, 78% disagreed.

Looking to the opposition, around half say Keir Starmer is ready to be Prime Minister (49%), including a third (32%) of 2019 Conservative voters. Meanwhile, a similar proportion say he is likely to become PM one day (50%), 1 in 3 think this is unlikely (33%).

In your opinion, how likely or not is it that Labour leader Keir Starmer will ever be Prime Minister? Likely 50% Unlikely 33% Don't know 27% Net Likely +17

Keiran Pedley, Director of Politics at Ipsos, said:

Whilst Rishi Sunak cannot be described as particularly unpopular with the British public, there is a prevailing sense that they expect him to lose the next General Election and Keir Starmer to be Prime Minister. One reason for this is an overwhelming sense of pessimism about the economy and a sense that Conservative policies over 12 years are a significant contributing factor. Sunak will hope he can change such perceptions between now and the next General Elections and reverse the Conservatives' ailing political fortunes.

Technical note

Ipsos surveyed a representative quota sample of 1,085 adults aged 18-75 in Great Britain. Surveys took place on the online Omnibus 24th-25th November 2022. Data has been weighted to the known offline population proportions. All polls are subject to a wide range of potential sources of error.

The author(s)

  • Gideon Skinner Public Affairs
  • Keiran Pedley Public Affairs
  • Cameron Garrett Public Affairs
  • Ben Roff Public Affairs

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