Burnham ahead in leadership poll

Labour supporters also say they would like their next leader to most resemble Tony Blair


Andy Burnham remains the favoured candidate to take the helm of the Labour Party, new polling has revealed.

The data, compiled by Ipsos Mori for the Evening Standard, finds that Burnham is supported by 15 per cent of the population as a whole and 23 per cent of Labour supporters.

He is followed by Yvette Cooper, who trails closely behind on 14 per cent support (20 per cent of Labour supporters) and then by Liz Kendall, supported by 11 per cent of both the general population and Labour supporters.

Jeremy Corbyn, who many have argued articulated the clearest vision in Wednesday’s Newsnight debate, is supported by 5 per cent of the general population and 9 per cent of Labour supporters.

34 per cent of the public do not know who they would like to see lead the party, compared to 24 per cent of Labour supporters who do not know.

Interestingly, when asked which previous Labour leader the next leader should most resemble, 19 per cent of the population as a whole said Tony Blair, plus 23 per cent of Labour supporters. This is some way ahead of second-placed John Smith.

32 per cent of the general population and 29 per cent of Labour supporters do not know which previous leader the next leader should most resemble.

On headline voting intentions, the scale of Labour’s challenges is once against revealed, with the Conservatives on 39 per cent of the vote and Labour on 30 per cent. The Lib Dems are third on 9 per cent.

Meanwhile the polling shows a clear majority of respondents supporting the UK’s continued membership of the European Union.

This is despite the fact that 57 per cent feel that David Cameron will not get a good deal from his negotiations with other European leaders on the terms of the UK’s membership.

Commenting on the results Gideon Skinner, head of political research at Ipsos MORI, said:

“Tony Blair still outshines other past Labour leaders – even among supporters of other parties, and especially among the middle classes (but less among older people and working classes).

“But Labour’s answer isn’t simply in the past – many actually say they ‘don’t know’ or ‘none of them’ – an issue that also faces the current contenders, which means they still have all to play for.”

Ed Jacobs is a contributing editor to Left Foot Forward. Follow him on Twitter 

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