Latest GB Voting Intention
(24 August)

August 26, 2020
R&WS Research Team
Approval Rating | Boris Johnson | Conservative Party | GB Politics | Keir Starmer | Labour Party | Rishi Sunak | UK Politics | Voting Intention

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Redfield & Wilton Strategies’ latest GB voting intention poll from 24 August finds the Conservative Party leading by 5%. Compared to our previous voting intention polls on 19th August and 12th August, this result represents a slight 2% fall in the lead held by the Conservative Party. The full numbers for our voting intention poll (with their changes from 19th August in parentheses) are as follows:

Conservative 42% (-2)

Labour 37% (–)

Liberal Democrat 9% (+2)

Scottish National Party 4% (–)

Green 5% (+1)

Plaid Cymru 0% (­–)

Other 3% (–)

Likelihood to vote fell slightly by 2% this week, with 60% saying they would be certain to vote in the event of a General Election in the near future, when it is safe for an election to be held.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson saw his approval rating decrease by 1% since last week, a change that falls within the margin of error of this poll. The Prime Minister’s net approval rating now stands at +1%, with 39% saying they approve of his job performance since becoming Prime Minister and 38% saying they disapprove. The Prime Minister’s approval rating has not bounced back immediately since a significant drop last week amid the Government’s controversial handling of this year’s exams grading process. The Prime Minister’s approval rating remains significantly lower than in our polls on 12 August and 29 July, when it stood at net +9% approval.  

Likewise, the net approval rating for Labour Leader Keir Starmer decreased by 1% (within the margin of error). This week, Starmer’s approval rating stands at a net +18%. The public continues to remain either unfamiliar or ambiguous about the Labour Leader, with 32% of respondents neither approving nor disapproving of Starmer’s job performance at this stage.

Johnson now leads Starmer by 9% in a straight contest over who would be the best Prime Minister for the UK at the present time. This represents a 3% increase in Johnson’s lead over Starmer from a week ago, when the Prime Minister led by 6%. Nevertheless, it remains 5% lower than Johnson’s lead over Starmer on 12 August, when the Prime Minister led by 14%.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s approval rating rose by 2% this week and is now at net +43% approval. A majority (54%) continue to approve of Sunak’s job performance, with only 11% saying they disapprove. Similarly to Starmer, Sunak’s relatively recent appointment translates into 29% saying they neither approve nor disapprove of his job performance.

For the second week in a row, Johnson continues to hold a 4% advantage over Sunak in a straight contest over who would be the better Prime Minister for the UK. This week, 36% selected Boris Johnson and 32% selected Rishi Sunak, 32% don’t know

Likewise, Sunak’s lead in a straight contest against Starmer continues to stand at 3%, which was the same as last week. 37% of respondents selected Sunak and 34% selected Starmer. Sunak’s lead over Starmer has declined by 13% since he led by 16% a fortnight ago. Overall, even though the Chancellor trails the Prime Minister when it comes to who respondents think would be the best Prime Minister, the Labour Leader remains slightly behind both the Prime Minister and the Chancellor.

The Prime Minister’s approval rating remains significantly lower than earlier this month, while the Chancellor continues to experience an increase in his popularity. It remains to be seen whether the Prime Minister’s approval rating will bounce back as he returns from holiday and plays an active role in getting children back to school next month. Moreover, approval of the Chancellor’s job performance will be tested significantly as the popular ‘Eat Out to Help Out’ scheme ends. Sunak will also be under increased scrutiny as the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme starts to phase out and the economic impact of the pandemic becomes clearer. Keir Starmer still remains behind Johnson and Sunak in relation to who would be a better Prime Minister, and is still relatively unknown by the public, yet it remains to be seen if the Labour Party Leader can make a sustained impact on the public conversation as Parliament returns from recess and holds the Government to account for its ongoing handling of the coronavirus pandemic.

To find out more information about this research contact our research team. Redfield & Wilton Strategies is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules. Follow us on Twitter

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