Jeremy Corbyn might well be on the cusp of retaining the Labour crown, but he’s also on the cusp of electoral Armageddon. Rarely can there have been such a dis-connect between the acclaim of his supporters and the derision of the public.
The truly scary proposition for Britain’s great party of the Left is that only 16% of the population view it as likely winners of the next General Election. Almost as many (13%) don’t see Labour back in power for at least 20 years, but 43% of Labour supporters think the next election will return them to power.
In overall terms, Labour drop to 26%, their lowest score from ICM in this political cycle, and depths not plumbed since Gordon Brown’s 2009 crisis around the ‘election that never was’. With the Tories stable on 41%, the reinstalled leader has a job of work to do.
And yet a paltry 19% think he’s the man to do it, although 45% of those still intending to vote Labour think so. Just as few think he has the ideas and personal characteristics to make Britain a better place, but it almost doubles to 35% among Labour’s core. Belief that Captain Corbyn will press the reset button on an exciting new style of engaging politics or indeed a kinder, gentler politics gets short shrift too. Only about a quarter of the public are convinced, but well over half of Labour comrades buy in.
If Corbyn stumbles on the personal attributes front can he count on that other component of effective leadership: policy? Nope. There’s outright rejection for many likely offerings, in particular around defence issues. Just 9% think he should withdraw Britain from NATO, 18% would like to see defence spending cuts and 21% support the scrapping of Britain’s nuclear deterrent. More than FOUR times as many people trust Theresa May to look after the safety and security of Britain than trust Corbyn.
Abolishing the Tory benefits cap that prevents claimants receiving more than £500 per week garners 20% approval, but at least in this case more Labour supporters reject it than like it.
A sympathetic eye on Syrian refugees does nothing more than raise eyebrows, just 18% would support more being allowed in.
At least commuters might appreciate a little government intervention. Nearly, but not quite half the population would support their re-nationalisation, about the only policy that appears to have a little likeability.
Perhaps the only consoling news is that the next generation of potential Labour leaders is, to put it mildly, thin on the ground. Chukka Umunna gets some name recognition as the next leader but only 9% of voters point him out. Dan Jarvis receives 4% and Tristrum Hunt 3%.
Link tothe Sun on Sunday article: http://bit.ly/2dvEOB4
ICM Unlimited interviewed a representative online sample of 2,015 adults aged 18+, on 21-23rd September 2016. Data has been weighted to the profile of all adults. ICM is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules.