Public prefers Cameron to Brown

Polls taken after announcement of missing data discs indicate public prefers David Cameron to Gordon Brown
Polls taken after announcement of missing data discs indicate public prefers David Cameron to Gordon Brown

New polls indicate that the public now prefers Conservative leader David Cameron to lead the country through difficult times rather than Gordon Brown.

A survey published in the News of the World asked respondents their opinions about the leadership credentials of the two rivals, after the announcement that discs with information of 25 million child benefit claimants had gone missing.

A total of 46 per cent of people said they believed Mr Cameron was a better leader compared with Mr Brown's tally of 38 per cent.

Similarly ten per cent more of those interviewed believed that the opposition leader had better policies than the incumbent prime minister. Only 36 per cent of those participating in the survey felt Mr Brown had the best policies.

However, the results of the MSL public opinion assessment indicated that people still had faith in the current prime minister. Results were split at 38 per cent on the question of whom the public trusted most to run the economy. A slim two per cent more people believed that Mr Brown was poor in a crisis over the 44 per cent who thought he was effective in a crisis.

Previous polls taken after the prime minister stepped into office indicated high levels of confidence in his leadership capabilities as the government dealt with the July floods, an outbreak of foot and mouth disease and failed terrorist attacks in central London and Glasgow.

However, the data records scandal and the government's handling of bankrupt lender Northern Rock's finances have not been viewed favourably by the public, according to opinion polls.

Another survey appearing in the Daily Telegraph sees 50 per cent of those interviewed saying they were dissatisfied with Alistair Darling's performance as chancellor. Only 32 per cent expressed confidence in his management of the economy, which is a worse rating than Mr Brown ever received during his ten years in the post.

Similarly the joint approval ratings of Mr Brown and Mr Darling compared with Mr Cameron and shadow chancellor George Osborne have plummeted from a lead of 30 per cent seven months ago to seven per cent today.

Olympics minister Tessa Jowell has called for the party to stand united in the wake of the party's falling popularity. Speaking to the Telegraph she said: "This is a united government dealing with humility with these events which have caused great public anxiety."

Another survey published in the Guardian yesterday indicated the Conservatives had widened their lead in the popularity stakes by one per cent and revealed that Labour's approval ratings were only two points adrift of their worst month in recent history when Mr Blair faced stern opposition from his own party in October 2006.

Recent polls have shown a growing negative perception of both Mr Brown's leadership as well as that of the party he leads ever since he ruled out a snap election in the autumn.


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