Britons more likely to agree with Ed Balls that George Osborne in denial about cost of living than to think Osborne’s long term plan for recovery is working Public split over long term impact of government’s economic policies
An Ipsos MORI snap poll carried out in the evening following the Autumn Statement shows that when asked whether they agree with Ed Balls that George Osborne is in denial about the cost of living crisis or with George Osborne that his long term plan for economic recovery is working, the public agree with Mr Balls over Mr Osborne by 40% to 24%. A quarter (27%) say they agree with neither.
The public are split on the long-term impact of the government’s policies on Britain’s economy: 40% think they will improve the economy, while 38% disagree. However, they are more pessimistic on public services. One in five (21%) think the government’s policies will improve Britain’s public services in the long term, but 54% disagree.
On the Autumn Statement itself, just over half (56%) said they saw, read or heard something about it on the news or online, while another 8% said they watched it in full. A third, 34%, hadn’t seen anything about it - and young people were much less likely to have seen anything about it than older people.
On one of the measures announced today, linking retirement age to life expectancy, 30% support the policy and 58% say they oppose it.
Perhaps not surprisingly, many people are unable to estimate the impact of the Autumn Statement at this early stage (although this is less the case for those who had watched it on the news). Among those who do have a view, they are much more likely to think it will benefit rich people (47% think it was good for rich people, 5% bad) than poor people (14% good, 44% bad). Their initial reactions on the impact for people like themselves are also on balance negative – 42% think it was bad for people like them, compared with 15% who think it was good.
Gideon Skinner, Head of Political Research at Ipsos MORI, said:
“The Conservatives have seen their ratings on managing the economy rise in line with general optimism about the economy. However, many people also feel that the growth in the economy is not benefiting their own standard of living, and this is reflected in the finding that 40% agree with Ed Balls that George Osborne is in denial about the cost of living crisis. But these are people’s initial reactions – there is still time for them to change as they digest the Autumn Statement - and in particular the media’s interpretation of it.”
Technical Note Ipsos MORI interviewed 1,071 online adults aged between 18 to 75 across Great Britain. Interviews were conducted using Ipsos’ online panel on the evening of 5th December 2013. Data are weighted to match the profile of the population.