Ratings For Blair And IDS Rise In The First Weekend Of The War

The first poll on domestic political issues since the war started shows Tony Blair's satisfaction ratings rising to their highest level since June 2002. The latest MORI Political Monitor, with interviews carried out between 20-24 March, finds the proportion satisfied with his performance as Prime Minister rising from 31% to 43%, with those dissatisfied falling from 61% to 48%. That means his net score — those satisfied minus dissatisfied — has risen from minus 30 to minus 5. After a month in February when his rating among his own party supporters fell to its lowest ever, Labour voters are now three times more likely to be satisfied with his performance than dissatisfied.

The first poll on domestic political issues since the war started shows Tony Blair's satisfaction ratings rising to their highest level since June 2002. The latest MORI Political Monitor, with interviews carried out between 20-24 March, finds the proportion satisfied with his performance as Prime Minister rising from 31% to 43%, with those dissatisfied falling from 61% to 48%. That means his net score -- those satisfied minus dissatisfied -- has risen from minus 30 to minus 5. After a month in February when his rating among his own party supporters fell to its lowest ever, Labour voters are now three times more likely to be satisfied with his performance than dissatisfied.

Satisfaction with the way the Government is running the country has also risen, from a net score of minus 42 to minus 20, and people are even feeling slightly more confident about the economy than they were last month -- although half still think it will get worse over the next year. This month's MORI Economic Optimism Index (EOI), at minus 39 points, marks an increase on the minus 50 recorded in February.

Iain Duncan Smith is another beneficiary, with his satisfaction rating rising from minus 37 in February to minus 26 this month (though this still means that 47% are dissatisfied with his performance, against 21% satisfied). Charles Kennedy, on the other hand, may be suffering. His personal rating has fallen from plus 19 to plus 13 over the month.

Defence and foreign affairs is still seen as the most important issue facing the country, mentioned by 64%, while the NHS is the most important domestic issue at 42%. The war, though, has made little change to the state of the parties. Based on the half of the population who say they are absolutely certain to vote, Labour is up two points to 43%, the Tories are unchanged at 29%, and the Liberal Democrats are down one to 21%.

Topline Results

  • MORI interviewed a representative quota sample of 1,913 adults aged 18+ at 193 sampling points across Great Britain.
  • Fieldwork was conducted face-to-face on 20-24 March 2003.
  • 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

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: All absolutely certain to vote (970)

 %
Conservative29
Labour43
Liberal Democrats (Lib Dem)21
Scottish/Welsh Nationalist3
Green Party2
Democratic/UKIP Party1
Other2
 
Lab lead (177%)+14
 
Would not vote1
Undecided7
Refused1

The headline figures are based on all those absolutely certain to vote.

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: All respondents (1,913)

 %
Conservative27
Labour46
Liberal Democrats (Lib Dem)20
Scottish/Welsh Nationalist3
Green Party2
Democratic/UKIP Party1
Other1
 
Lab lead (177%)+19
 
Would not vote15
Undecided11
Refused1

The headline figures are based on all respondents.

Q3-6 Are you satisfied or dissatisfied with the way the Government / Mr Blair / Mr Duncan Smith / Mr Kennedy are doing their job? Base: 983

 SatisfiedDissatisfiedDon't knowIndex
 %%%177%
Government355510-20
Blair43489-5
Duncan Smith214732-26
Kennedy392635+13

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? Base: 983

 Q7Q7/8
 %%
Defence/foreign affairs/international terrorism5464
National Health Service/Hospitals642
Education/schools227
Race relations/immigration/immigrants926
Crime/law & order/violence/vandalism418
Economy/economic situation413
Nuclear weapons/nuclear war/disarmament69
Pensions/social security29
Transport/public transport*9
Unemployment/factory closure/lack of industry18
Taxation17
Common Market/EU/Europe/Single European Currency 15
Housing15
Poverty/inequality15
Inflation/prices*3
Morality/individual behaviour*3
Drug abuse*2
Low pay/minimum wage/fair wages*2
Pollution/environment*2
Local government/council tax02
Trade unions/strikes02
Petrol prices/fuel*1
Countryside/rural life01
AIDS**
Foot and mouth outbreak/farming crisis**
Northern Ireland**
Pound/exchange rate/value of pound**
Scottish/Welsh Assembly/Devolution Constitutional reform**
Animal welfare0*
Beef/BSE/Mad Cow Disease0*
GM/GM (Genetically Modified) foods0*
Privatisation0*
 
Other314
Don't know43

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: 983

 %
Improve12
Stay the same29
Get worse51
Don't know8
 
MORI EOI-39

Q10 And how likely would you be to vote in an immediate General Election, on a scale of 1 to 10, where 10 means you would be absolutely certain to vote, and 1 means that you would be absolutely certain not to vote? Base: 1,913

 %
10 -- absolutely certain to vote50
95
87
75
63
58
42
33
22
1 -- absolutely certain not to vote11
Don't know2

Q11 Are you satisfied or dissatisfied with the way Gordon Brown is doing his job as Chancellor of the Exchequer?

 %
Satisfied45
Dissatisfied34
Don't know21
 
Net satisfied+11

Q12 On balance, do you agree or disagree that 'in the long term, this Government's policies will improve the state of Britain's economy'?

 %
Agree36
Disagree43
Don't know21
 
Net agree-7

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