Ipsos MORI Political Monitor May 2012

Ipsos MORI's May Political Monitor shows Labour opening up a 10 point lead as ratings of the government, David Cameron, and Nick Clegg have fallen to their lowest ever.

Ipsos MORI Political Monitor May 2012

Labour open up 10 point lead as Cameron and Clegg’s ratings fall to all time low

Labour and Conservatives neck and neck on economic competence

Tory voters think Coalition has been better for Lib Dems than for the Conservatives

Four in ten people think the Lib Dems do not have enough influence in Coalition

Voting Intention: CON 33 (-2); LAB 43 (+5); LIB DEM 9 (-3)

Ipsos MORI’s May Political Monitor shows Labour opening up a 10 point lead over the Conservatives among those certain to vote at the next general election. This is Labour’s biggest lead since February 2011.  At the same time ratings of the government, David Cameron, and Nick Clegg have fallen to their lowest ever.

David Cameron’s negative net approval rating of -28 (satisfied minus dissatisfied) is down eight points since April, while Nick Clegg’s net rating of -39 is also down by the same amount.  Both are their worst ratings ever.  Meanwhile two-thirds (67%) are unhappy with the way the government is running the country, the worst the Coalition has seen and similar to the ratings at the end of the Labour government in 2010.  Ed Miliband’s ratings are little changed, on -16.

The majority agree that being in a coalition has taken a toll on the two parties: 58% think it has been bad for the Conservative party and 62% that it has been bad for the Liberal Democrats (while nearly half think it has been good for Labour).  Among Conservative voters, 38% think being in coalition has been good for their party – but 48% think it has been good for the Liberal Democrats.

At the same time, just under half of Britons, 44%, think the Liberal Democrats do not have enough influence in the Coalition government, while 35% think they have about the right amount.  Just 14% think they have too much influence, although this rises to 23% of Conservative voters (compared to just 7% and 3% among Labour and Liberal Democrats respectively).

On the number one issue facing the country, the economy, the Conservatives and Labour are neck and neck as the best party, with 31% favouring the Conservatives and 30% Labour.  This one-point Conservative lead compares to their ten-point lead in September last year, although Labour haven’t held a lead on this issue since 2007.

Head of Political Research at Ipsos MORI, Gideon Skinner, said:

“In the aftermath of the local elections, the government’s difficulties continue, with the worst ever ratings for David Cameron and Nick Clegg.  Meanwhile, Conservative voters think the Liberal Democrats have done better out of the coalition than their own party has.

Labour’s lead is the highest for over a year, and they have closed the gap on economic competence – but even after the worst received Budget for over 15 years, they still have work to do to become the most trusted on this key issue.”

Technical note

Ipsos MORI interviewed a representative sample of 1,006 adults aged 18+ across Great Britain. Interviews were conducted by telephone 12-14 May 2012.  Data are weighted to match the profile of the population.

More insights about Public Sector