Starmer seen as more likely to offer Britain a fresh start and improve public services

43% think a Labour government with Keir Starmer as Prime Minister is likely to offer Britain a fresh start.

The author(s)
  • Keiran Pedley Public Affairs
  • Ben Roff Public Affairs
  • Cameron Garrett Public Affairs
  • Laura King Public Affairs
  • Gideon Skinner UK Head of Political Research
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The latest Ipsos Campaign Tracker of the 2024 General Election shows two in five (43%) think a Labour government with Keir Starmer as Prime Minister is likely to offer Britain a fresh start – more than twice the proportion who say the same about the Conservatives and Rishi Sunak (20%).

Likewise, around two in five think Starmer’s Labour party is likely to improve public services (46%) and reduce regional inequalities (40%) – again double the amount who say the same about Sunak’s Conservatives (23%, 20% respectively). 

As shown below, a hypothetical Labour government after the next election, leads in nearly all areas. The lead becomes tighter on foreign policy and economic issues, while the Conservatives are seen as more likely to reduce taxes than Labour (28% vs. 24% respectively).

 

What might a future government do?

 

Favourability towards leaders and other tracking data

There has been little movement elsewhere in the poll. The top issues that will be very important in deciding how people vote remain as the NHS, selected by 63%, and inflation / cost of living, mentioned by 54% (both -1ppts). 

Keir Starmer’s ratings remain unchanged with one in three (31%) saying they have a favourable opinion towards him and two in five (40%) feeling unfavourable (-1ppts since last week). 

The majority (56%) still feel unfavourable towards Rishi Sunak (-1ppts), while one in five (21%) say  they are favourable (-2ppts). When put in a head-to-head about who would be the better Prime Minister, Keir Starmer has a 15pt lead over Rishi Sunak, with 34% opting for him (+1ppts) and 19% selecting the Conservative leader (-2ppts).

Favourability with Sunak and Starmer

 

There has been little movement in the public opinions towards political parties. The Labour party remain the most popular with two in five (40%, +1ppts) feeling favourable towards them, against 36% unfavourable (-2ppts). This is the highest favourability score that Labour have registered since this Ipsos tracker started in November 2019.

The percentage saying they have an unfavourable opinion towards the Liberal Democrats has fallen five percentage points, now at one in three (33%). However, still only one in five (20%) feel favourable towards them (+1ppts). As shown below, there has been little movement in other party’s ratings compared to last week.

Political parties: Net favourability

 

Keiran Pedley, Director of Politics at Ipsos said:

Ahead of the first leader debate between Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer this evening we can see public perceptions of the leaders have not really changed since the campaign started. With a hypothetical Labour government seen as more likely to offer a fresh start and improve Britain’s public services than Sunak’s Conservatives, the Prime Minister will hope for a breakthrough moment in the debate to start to turn things around. 

 

Technical note:
Ipsos interviewed a representative sample of 1,110 adults aged 18+ across Great Britain. Interviews were conducted by telephone between the 31st May to 3rd June 2024. Data are weighted to match the profile of the population. All polls are subject to a wide range of potential sources of error.

The author(s)
  • Keiran Pedley Public Affairs
  • Ben Roff Public Affairs
  • Cameron Garrett Public Affairs
  • Laura King Public Affairs
  • Gideon Skinner UK Head of Political Research

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