More bleak polling numbers for Rishi Sunak...
New polling figures have hinted that Labour are making major in roads in traditional Tory strongholds. Redfield & Wilton’s latest polling of the so called ‘Blue Wall’ have found that Labour have stonking leads on the Tories on a number of major political issues.
The polling firm has carried out research in constituencies in the South of England which elected Tory MPs in 2015, 2017 and 2019 where the remain vote in the 2016 referendum was at least 42.5%, where at least 25% of voters have a degree, and where the Tories last won by over 10,000 votes with Labour in second place, or 15,000 votes with the Liberal Democrats in second place. Among the constituencies polled are Tory heartlands like Tunbridge Wells, Chelsea and Fulham, and Guildford.
Headline voting intention statistics in these seats has Labour on 33%, the Tories on 32%, the Liberal Democrats on 25%, Reform UK on 5% and the Greens on 4%. On the question as to who would make the best prime minister, Keir Starmer leads Rishi Sunak too, with 36% backing the Labour leader, compared to 35% for the Tories’. This is the first time Starmer has outpolled Sunak in Redfield & Wilton’s ‘Blue Wall’ research since the latter became prime minister.
That alone would be enough to make Tory election strategists wince. But the data on who ‘Blue Wall’ voters trust on a range of major issues are even more damning on the Tories.
According to Redfield and Winton’s research, ‘Blue Wall’ voters only trust the Tories more than Labour on two issues: responding to the crisis in Ukraine and handling immigration. Labour and the Tories are level pegging on who they trust to respond to coronavirus.
On every other issue ‘Blue Wall’ voters were polled on, Labour leads the Tories. Labour leads the Tories by 20 points on who is trusted to tackle poverty, by 17 points on who is trusted to manage housing and by 16 points on who is trusted to invest in ‘left behind’ areas. Labour also has a 15 point lead on the NHS and education.
Strikingly, Labour now lead the Tories by 7 points in the ‘Blue Wall’ on who is most trusted to tackle crime – typically an area the Tories poll well on. Labour now also lead the Tories on the economy by 4 points.
The only policy area where a political party other than Labour or the Tories are most trusted to deliver is the environment. 25 per cent of ‘Blue Wall’ voters polled said they trust the Greens, compared to 19 per cent who said Labour and 16 percent the Tories.
Chris Jarvis is head of strategy and development at Left Foot Forward