It’s less than six months until the general elections, meaning news like this is not good for the Labour leadership team. This follows Ed Miliband hitting an all time low approval ratings record.
The YouGov poll, in which data was collected between the 5th and 6th November, suggests that 49% of all voters think a new Labour leader would help the party’s chances, rising to 54% for Labour voters.
Additionally, the poll also suggests that just 17% of voters think Ed Miliband would make the best Prime Minister, compared to David Cameron on 34%, Nick Clegg on 4% and Nigel Farage on 10%. Clearly Ed Miliband’s unpopularity is showing. Even in the north where Labour does well, just 21% think the Labour leader would make the best Prime Minister, eight points behind David Cameron on 29%.
Additionally, in another detrimental blow to the Labour leadership, just 33% of voters think a Labour led government is the most likely outcome next May. 9% think we will have a Labour majority government, 15% a Labour minority administration and 9% a Liberal Democrat and Labour coalition.
To make things worse 39% think that the government will be led by the Conservatives. 13% think it will be a Conservative majority, 21% a minority government and 5% think David Cameron’s party will enter into another coalition agreement with the Liberal Democrats.
The poll is hard hitting for the Labour leader, who should, as leader of the opposition, be preparing to enter Number 10 next May.
This follows new that the Times has said that Andy Burnham and Yvette Cooper have reportedly had meetings in secret to discuss what should be done if the Labour leader stands down. Ed Miliband has dismissed such reports.
Whether they are true or not the cracks are beginning to show in Ed Miliband’s leadership. He is an unpopular figure as suggested by the poll.
On one hand, if Ed Miliband quit it could be seen as a bold move allowing someone more likely to win to take the job. But on the other, if Miliband stepped down from the leadership onlookers would perceive the party as one of cracks and tensions, unless a new leader took over swiftly.
It is more than likely that Ed Miliband will stay in office until the general election. But if the party loses next May, then political pundits, and the likes of Andy Burnham and Yvette Cooper will look back and wonder: ‘what if?’
The full results of the YouGov poll can be found here: http://d25d2506sfb94s.cloudfront.net/cumulus_uploads/document/buevd1vwp7/LBCResults_141106_next_election_government_and_ukip_W.pdf