66 per cent of respondents would like to see Corbyn at the helm
There are still nine days left for Labour members to vote in what has been one of the most fraught leadership contests in recent memory. Last week, we asked our readers who they would like to see leading the party as of 12 September. Here are the results:
66.13 per cent (412) said Jeremy Corbyn
12.68 per cent (79) said Liz Kendall
12.52 per cent (78) said Yvette Cooper
9.31 per cent (58) said Andy Burnham
(click to zoom)
Our poll results echo the general consensus about the leadership contenders; that Corbyn’s message is by far the clearest, meaning support for the other candidates is scattered. Concern about this is such that last month Liz Kendall reportedly urged Yvette Cooper to stand down to give Andy Burnham a better chance of winning. Lord Mandelson has also reportedly tried to persuade all three candidates to withdraw in order to freeze the election and stop Corbyn from winning.
Yet support for Corbyn seems unabated among Labour voters. A July poll by Labour List showed that 73 per cent of its readers were planning to vote for the Islington North MP. Liz Kendall came miles behind in second place with just 10 per cent of the vote. Last month a Times/YouGov poll put Corbyn 31 points ahead of his nearest rival – in this case Burnham – on first preferences.
Of course, polls are not prophecies, and ours is an unweighted and self selected sample of 627 people. After the General Election scepticism about polling is higher than ever, and perhaps most importantly, Left Foot Forward readers are not all Labour members.
But as results day draws closer, it seems increasingly unlikely that ‘Shy Kendalls’, for example, will present much of a worry for Corbyn. In the Labour List poll, only two per cent of respondents said they weren’t sure who would get their first choice.
Still, even at this late stage there are attempts to beat Corbyn at his own game. Yesterday Andy Burnham made a direct pitch to the left, promising would-be Corbyn voters that Labour under his leadership would be ‘clearer about where we oppose the Tories’.
It has become a well-rehearsed mantra that people know what Corbyn stands for, and that this clarity is clearly appealing. The other candidates have scrambled to present a similarly strong vision, but if polls are anything to go by, it could well be too late.
Ruby Stockham is a staff writer at Left Foot Forward
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