May is making a quiet comeback as Corbyn’s ratings stagnate

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A new YouGov poll suggests that the prime minister’s unpopularity has depleted over the summer.

Before June’s snap election, Theresa May was a popular prime minister on course for a tremendous majority. But, the rise in popularity of Jeremy Corbyn and Labour’s plan for government put an end to her sky-high ambitions.

Her numbers plummeted, but recent YouGov polling suggests the prime minister’s unpopularity is diminishing.

A YouGov poll conducted in the week after the snap election put May’s net approval rating at -34%. Meanwhile, Jeremy Corbyn’s stood at zero. The two numbers juxtaposed with pre-election perceptions of the pair is truly staggering.

The next YouGov poll, conducted mid-August gave the prime minister a net approval rating of -27%, suggesting that anger towards her was starting to cool off. Respondents in the poll gave her Labour rival a net approval rating of -13%, indicating that Corbynmania was beginning to wear off.

The most recent poll continues this trend, giving Theresa May a net approval rating of -20% - that’s seven points higher than her rating in August and fourteen points higher than her immediate post-election score.

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If the polling is accurate, Theresa May is making a slow comeback. In contrast, Corbyn’s ratings dipped suddenly in August, but have maintained stead in this recent poll (-14%).

Theresa May has made her intentions very clear: she intends to stay for the long-run, something she told the BBC on a trip to Japan.

But a recent survey of Conservative party members found that most wanted May to step down in time for the next election.

Analysis:

As voters have had time to digest the general election over the summer, May has become less unpopular. Her ratings are still worse than Jeremy Corbyn’s, but she is making a quiet comeback.

However, only time will tell if this continues, and if it does Theresa May could well be around to fight the next election. If not, question marks about her leadership will become more frequent in the Westminster bubble.

The full results of the most recent YouGov poll can be accessed here. A total of 1,644 Great British adults were surveyed between the 4th and 5th September.