General election 2024: three quarters have a negative view of politics in Britain

Tanya AbrahamResearch Director of Political and Social Research
June 27, 2024, 3:14 PM GMT+0

With the election in less than a week, YouGov polling finds that opinions of politics and politicians remains extremely low.

Three in four (75%) have a negative opinion of politics in Britain today; this view is held by the majority of those who voted for Conservatives (72%) and Labour (79%) in 2019.

When asked the same question in February 2022 and following the partygate scandal, just 61% of 2019 Conservatives felt negatively towards politics, representing a 12 point increase in pessimism since then.

Just 7% have a positive view of politics in Britain today.

Who holds responsibility?

Nine in ten assign either a great deal (65%) or fair amount (25%) of responsibility on the government to how politics operates in Britain, and this view is consistent across party lines.

The prime minister is attributed with responsibility by a similar number (89%) whilst 80% say the same about all politicians more broadly.

A smaller majority (64%) think the civil service is responsible.

Politicians are still viewed poorly

The study, conducted on 7-9 June before the betting scandal, finds that the public is largely pessimistic about the character of politicians today compared to those of the past.

When asked about politicians from all parties, over half think that today’s cohort are less honest (54%), less likely to follow the rules (51%) and less likely to work for the country’s best interests (51%) and improve matters (51%) now than before.

A further 49% think current politicians are now more corrupt.

Around a third think that things haven’t changed much between today’s and past politicians on levels surrounding honesty (34%), corruption (37%), rule following (33%), working for the country (36%) and improving matters (36%).

Over half of 2019 Labour and Liberal Democrat voters are more cynical than their Conservative counterparts across all metrics that we asked about. The only area where a majority of 2019 Conservatives are most likely to be negative is saying that today’s politicians are less honest (53%) than previously.

See the full results here

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Photo: Getty