Political Attitudes in Great Britain for October 2002
For the first time, more Conservatives are dissatisfied than satisfied with the way Iain Duncan Smith is doing his job as party leader, according to MORI Political Monitor survey for October.
The survey, the first since the conference speech which was touted as the most important of Mr Duncan Smith's career and which was considered a success by many commentators, found that only 32% of those who say they would vote Conservative were satisfied with Mr Duncan Smith's performance, while 39% were dissatisfied, a net score of -7. Among the whole public just 18% are satisfied and 44% dissatisfied, also the worst figures of his year-long leadership; almost as striking is that 38% still have no opinion whether he is doing a good job or not, the highest figure MORI has ever measured for a Leader of the Opposition at this point in his career.
Tony Blair's net satisfaction rating is -8 (41% are satisfied with the way he is doing his job as Prime Minister, 49% dissatisfied), figures which have changed little in the last few months, but 70% of Labour supporters are satisfied with his performance. Satisfaction with the way the government is running the country is only 35% (63% among Labour supporters), but this is by no means an unusually low mid-term figure -- the Conservative governments of 1979-83, 1983-7 and 1987-92 all fell below 25% satisfaction yet secured re-election when the time came.
Charles Kennedy remains the only one of the three major party leaders with a positive net rating, 45% of the public being satisfied with his leadership and only 19% dissatisfied.
The National Health Service is the issue of most concern to the public, as it has been in every month since the turn of the year: 45% of the public named it as one of the most important issues facing the country. Other widely mentioned issues are defence/foreign affairs (35%), education (32%) and crime/law & order (28%). Despite the controversy over the suspension of Stormont and accusations of spying against Sinn Fein, prominent in the news at the time the survey was being conducted, only three per cent of the public mentioned Northern Ireland as being an important issue.
- MORI interviewed a representative quota sample of 1,012 adults aged 18+ at 183 sampling points across Great Britain.
- Fieldwork was conducted face-to-face on 17-21 October 2002.
- Data are weighted to match the profile of the population.
- Results are based on all respondents unless otherwise stated
- An '*' indicates a finding of less than 0.5%, but greater than zero
Q3-6 Are you satisfied or dissatisfied with the way the Government / Mr Blair / Mr Duncan Smith / Mr Kennedy are doing their job?
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?
|National Health Service/Hospitals||17||45|
|Defence/foreign affairs/international terrorism||23||35|
|Crime/law & order/violence/vandalism||10||28|
|Unemployment/factory closure/lack of industry||3||10|
|Nuclear weapons/nuclear war/disarmament||6||8|
|Common Market/EU/Europe/Single European Currency||2||8|
|Low pay/minimum wage/fair wages||1||4|
|Local government/council tax||*||2|
|Foot and mouth outbreak/farming crisis||*||1|
|Pound/exchange rate/value of pound||*||1|
|GM/GM (Genetically Modified) foods||*||*|
|Beef/BSE/Mad Cow Disease||0||*|
|Scottish/Welsh Assembly/Devolution Constitutional reform||0||*|
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?
|Stay the same||40|
Q10 Some people did not get along to vote at the General Election on the 7th June 2001. Did you vote at the General Election on the 7th June 2001?
Q11 What Party did you vote for at the General Election on 7th June 2001. If you are not sure or did not vote, please say so.
|UK Independence Party||*|