Concern about defence and race/immigration increases, though the economy remains the key issue for now
Ipsos MORI's November Issues Index shows that the economy remains the most important issue facing the country today, as has been the case since for over a year. Just under half of the public (49%) place it among the most important issues facing Britain. However, there is a continuing decline in the numbers citing this issue as important, from a peak of 70% in January 2009. Indeed, this is the lowest score for this issue since August 2008, although concern about unemployment has risen five points to 27%.
A third (33%) place race relations/immigration among the most important issues facing the county, a nine percentage point increase from last month, and the highest score since May 2008. This is the first Issues Index conducted since Nick Griffin's appearance on 'Question Time'. A quarter (25%) are concerned about defence/foreign affairs, a ten percentage point increase from last month, in a month in which 11 British soldiers have been killed in Afghanistan to date, and recent attention being paid to Britain's role. This is the highest score for this issue since August 2007. Crime/law and order is seen to be among the most important issues by 24% of respondents, the same figure as in July 2009, representing the lowest score for this issue since after the London terrorist attacks (August 2005).