Jeremy Corbyn 'most unpopular opposition leader of past 45 years', says poll

Posted On: 
20th September 2019

Jeremy Corbyn is the most unpopular opposition party leader of the past 45 years, according to a new poll.

Jeremy Corbyn scored the worst of any opposition leader since 1977
Credit: 
PA Images

The survey by Ipsos MORI for the Evening Standard gave the Labour leader a net satisfaction rating of -60, with just 16% of voters pleased with him and 76% unhappy.

That means Mr Corbyn is even more unpopular than former Labour boss Michael Foot, who had an approval score of -56 in 1982, the year before he was routed by Margaret Thatcher in a general election.

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Fellow Labour ex-leader Ed Miliband's lowest score was -44 in 2014, while both Iain Duncan-Smith and William Hague went as low as -37 when they led the Tories.

Conversely, Tony Blair never had a negative net satisfaction rating when he was the leader of the opposition, his lowest score being +7 in 1996.

The poll came on the eve of the Labour conference in Brighton, where Mr Corbyn will come under pressure from members to make the party pro-Remain.

According to the poll, just 34% of Labour voters think Mr Corbyn has done a good job on Brexit, compared to 48% who said he had done a bad job.

He is coming under pressure to say Labour would back remain in any second referendum, with a battle expected between delegates from local parties and those from trade unions on the conference floor.

Keiran Pedley, Ipsos Mori's research director, said: “Jeremy Corbyn’s historically dire personal poll ratings will concern Labour supporters as the party heads into an expected general election. 

“When Tony Blair and David Cameron assumed office from opposition both had positive net satisfaction scores and Corbyn’s currently stands at -60. 

“However, he was able to significantly improve his personal poll ratings during the 2017 general election campaign so perhaps he will again.”