Half of Tory MPs say the Conservatives are going to win the next election

Matthew SmithHead of Data Journalism
July 13, 2023, 11:00 PM GMT+0

YouGov poll of MPs compares views with public on the next election outcome, the top issues facing the country, and the success of Brexit

A new YouGov poll of MPs has found that half of Conservative MPs expect the next election will result in a Conservative government, split between 29% who expect a small Conservative majority and 24% who expect a hung parliament resulting in another Tory government.

By contrast, only one in three expect Labour to emerge victorious at the next election, with 18% thinking Labour will form a government in a hung parliament, 13% expecting a small Labour majority, and 3% a large one. One in eight (13%) are unsure.

Among our full sample of MPs – 114 of whom YouGov interviewed between 5 June and 1 July – expectations of a Labour victory are much higher, at 62%, including 41% who believe Keir Starmer will secure a majority.

The general public are increasingly likely to expect a Labour victory at the last election. Ever since Liz Truss’s disastrous Budget last year, half or more Britons have said they think Labour will form the next government, with 55% saying so in our latest poll. This is a 5pt increase on the previous poll, and notably includes an 8pt increase in the number expecting Labour to win an outright majority (37%).

By contrast, only 21% of Britons expect the Conservatives to form the next government, down from 27% in June.

Conservative voters likewise expect a Labour victory at the next election, by 48% to 35%. This is a notable shift from June’s polling, when Tories were split 41% to 41%.

What do MPs see as the most pressing issues facing the country, and how does that compare to the public view?

The public and MPs, including Tory MPs and voters, are all most likely to list the economy as a top issue facing the UK. MPs were more likely to do so than the public: 77% of all MPs and 78% of Conservative MPs, compared to 63% of Britons and 64% of Tory voters.

When it comes to the ordering of the second and third most important issues, Conservative opinion diverges from the wider public/MP population. Among all MPs and all Britons, health is the second most commonly cited top issue, at 50% among MPs and 44% among the public. This is then followed by immigration, at 34% and 37% respectively.

Among Conservative voters and MPs, however, immigration is the second biggest issue. Half of Conservative MPs, and fully 60% of Tory voters, include it in their list of top issues facing the country. Health comes third for both groups, at 43% and 40% respectively.

Housing ranks fourth among all MPs (28%), including Conservative MPs (26%), with the environment just edging out homes among the general public for fourth place (23% vs 21%), while crime places fourth among Tory voters (24%).

Tory MPs tend to see Brexit as more of a success; their own voters are divided

While Nigel Farage may have said that Brexit has been a failure, half of Conservative MPs (47%) beg to differ, saying that Brexit has been more of a success than a failure. Only 20% consider it to have been more of a failure, while 27% say it has been neither.

MPs in general take an opposing view: 52% say Brexit has been more of a failure, compared to 27% who see it as more of a success. One in six (17%) see it as neither.

The public are even more convinced that Brexit has been a failure, with 61% saying so. Only 13% describe it as more of a success, while 19% say it is neither.

Tory voters are divided. One in three (33%) deem Brexit more of a failure, while 29% see it as more of a success, and 32% neither.

See the MP results here

See the public general election expectations here / top issue perceptions here / Brexit assessment here

Photo: Getty

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