MORI Political Monitor March 1997

MORI's first political survey after the election date was announced on 17 March: Data on voting intention, satisfaction with party leaders, issues facing Britain, economic optimism, party identification.

  • Research study conducted for The Times Newspaper - published 27 March 2000.
  • MORI interviewed a representative quota sample of 1,932 adults aged 18+ at 173 sampling points across Great Britain.
  • Fieldwork was conducted on 21-24 March 1997, and the results published in The Times on 27th March 1997.
  • Data weighted to match the profile of the population.
  • An asterisk (*) denotes a figure below 0.5%, but not zero.

Q1 How would you vote if there were a General Election tomorrow? (If undecided or refused at Q1) Q2 Which party are you most inclined to support? Base: 1,932

Conservative 29%
Labour 50%
Liberal Democrats 14%
Scottish/Welsh Nationalist 3%
Referendum Party 3%
Other 1%

Would not vote 7%
Undecided 10%
Refused 2%

Q3 Are you satisfied or dissatisfied with the way the Government is running the country? Q4 Are you satisfied or dissatisfied with the way Mr Major is doing his job as Prime Minister? Q5 Are you satisfied or dissatisfied with the way Mr Blair is doing his job as leader of the Labour Party? Q6 Are you satisfied or dissatisfied with the way Mr Ashdown is doing his job as leader of the Liberal Democrats?

  Satisfied Dissatisfied Don't know Index
  % % % ±
Government 23 69 8 -46
Major 32 59 9 -27
Blair 51 29 20 22
Ashdown 49 21 29 28

Q7 What would you say is the most important issue facing Britain today? Q8 What do you see as other important issues facing Britain today?

  Q7/Q8
  %
National Health Service/Hospitals 49
Education/schools 43
Unemployment/factory closure/lack of industry 39
Common Market/EU/Europe/Single European Currency 33
Crime/law and order/violence/vandalism 28
Economy/economic situation 18
Pensions/welfare security 15
Housing 6
Pollution/environment 6
Morality/individual behaviour 5
Inflation/prices 4
Drug abuse 3
Race relations/immigration/immigrants 3
Taxation 3
Beef/BSE/Mad Cow Disease 2
Local government/council tax 2
Privatisation 2
Local government/council tax 2
AIDS 1
Animal welfare 1
Defence/foreign affairs 1
Nuclear weapons/ nuclear war/disarmament 1

Other 12
Don't know 3

Important Issues over the last 12 months & Long Term Trends

Q9 Do you think that the general economic condition of the country will improve, stay the same, or get worse over the next 12 months? Base: 1,039

Improve 24%
Stay the same 40%
Get worse 23%
Don't know 12%
MORI Economic Optimism Index (EOI) +1

Q10 Have you definitely decided to vote for the ....PARTY NAMED AT Q1/2, or is there a chance that you may change your mind before the by-election?

Definitely decided 67%
May change mind 30%
Don't know 3%

Q11 If you do change your mind about voting for the ...PARTY NAMED AT Q1/Q2, which party would you vote for instead? Base: 475

Conservative 15%
Labour 26%
Liberal Democrats 25%
Scottish/Welsh Nationalist 3%
Green 1%
Referendum Party 4%
Other 3%

None of these 4%
Don't know 19%

Q12 Can you tell me how likely you are to get along to vote at the General election?

Certain to vote 66%
Very likely to vote 12%
Quite likely to vote 8%
Not very likely to vote 4%
Certain not to vote 8%
Don't know 2%

Q13 Here is a list of things both favourable and unfavourable that have been said about various politicians. I would like you to pick out all those statements that you feel fit ... Base: 973

  Mr Major Mr Blair Mr Ashdown  
A capable leader 22% 39% 26%
Good in a crisis 14% 9% 10%
Understands world problems 24% 17% 18%
Tends to talk down to people 21% 12% 8%
Rather narrow minded 22% 7% 6%
Too inflexible 19% 6% 5%
Has sound judgement 11% 19% 18%
More honest than most politicians 21% 20% 31%
Down-to-earth 13% 23% 27%
Understands the problems facing Britain 27% 36% 26%
Patriotic 26% 14% 25%
Has got a lot of personality 6% 35% 20%
Rather inexperienced 6% 35% 19%
Out of touch with ordinary people 47% 10% 7%
No opinion 8% 11% 24%

Q14 If a Labour government is elected after the next General Election, do you think it will or will not ...? Base: 972

  Will Will not Don't know
  % % %
Improve welfare state services 66 23 11
Increase income tax 66 20 14
Reduce unemployment 46 40 14
Keep its promises 39 47 14
Help to improve your own standard of living 33 53 14
Keep inflation down 34 48 18
Give a strong voice for Britain in Europe 56 26 18
Be controlled by the Trade Unions 26 57 17

Q15 If a Conservative government is elected after the next General Election, do you think it will or will not ...? Base: 960

  Will Will not Don't know
  % % %
Improve welfare state services 16 73 11
Increase income tax 56 32 11
Reduce unemployment 31 59 11
Keep its promises 18 70 11
Help to improve your own standard of living 25 66 9
Keep inflation down 55 35 9
Give a strong voice for Britain in Europe 43 44 13

Q16 Generally speaking, do you think of yourself as Conservative, Labour, Liberal Democrat, or what?

Conservative 29%
Labour 36%
Liberal Democrats 11%
Scottish/Welsh Nationalist 2%
Green 1%
Referendum Party *%
Other 1%

None of these 14%
Refused 1%
Don't know 5%

Technical details

MORI interviewed a representative quota sample of 1,932 adults aged 18+ at 173 sampling points across Great Britain. Fieldwork was conducted on 21-24 March 1997. Base: All respondents, unless stated. The voting intention figures exclude those who say they would not vote (7%), are undecided (10%) or refuse to name a party (2%). All figures are in percentages. Where percentages do not sum to 100, this may be due to multiple responses, the exclusion of don't knows or computer rounding. Data were weighted to match the profile of the population. An asterisk (*) denotes a figure between zero and 0.5%.

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