We finally know why voters prefer Theresa May

We finally know why voters prefer Theresa May

It's no secret that voters prefer Theresa May to Jeremy Corbyn.  We track YouGov's 'Best PM' poll on our Data Hub and the Prime Minister consistently gets 45-50 percent, with the Labour leader usually on somewhere around 15%. Opinium's approval ratings poll has had Theresa May above zero - rare for any Prime Minister - ever since she got into office; in the same period, Jeremy Corbyn has been consistently below zero.  

But why is this?  Why do so many voters say they'd prefer to see May than Corbyn in Number 10? A common response  when we Tweet out these polls is something along the lines of 'this isn't because of Theresa May, but because of her opposition!'.  Previously, there'd been no research into exactly why voters prefer Theresa May.  Finally, however, someone's decided to poll it.


Theresa May's and Jeremy Corbyn's approval ratings, from Opinium


In early March, YouGov did their usual 'Best Prime Minister?' survey, and, as usual, 49% of voters said they'd prefer Theresa May to be Prime Minister, with just 15% saying the same for Jeremy Corbyn.  36% of voters didn't know which one they'd prefer to be in Number 10.

Of those who plumped for Theresa May, YouGov asked them why they did so.  Was it because of 'Theresa May's strengths' or 'Jeremy Corbyn's weaknesses'?

Here's what they said:

voters on why they prefer theresa may.PNG

It turns out, actually, that voters who prefer May don't do so for one overwhelming reason.  The responses were split pretty evenly between Theresa May's strengths (47%) and Jeremy Corbyn's weaknesses (46%).

That's cleared things up, then...

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Campaign Update #1

Campaign Update #1

Voter Flows: YouGov, 5-6 April

Voter Flows: YouGov, 5-6 April