Boris Johnson vs David Cameron

Max KowalewskiJunior Research Executive
March 25, 2013, 2:21 PM GMT+0

Influential Britons think Boris Johnson is outperforming David Cameron and other leading politicians

New research shows that influential Britons view Boris Johnson far more positively than the leaders of the three main political parties. These findings come from YouGov’s monthly survey of UK opinion formers, who are drawn from politics, business, media, academia, NGOs and the public sector.

The Mayor of London is the only leading politician to gain a strong net score (+53) when influential Britons were asked how well they believe UK political leaders are doing in their current roles. Two-thirds (67%) say Boris Johnson is doing a good job, and only 14% think he is doing a poor job.

In contrast, David Cameron and Nick Clegg are considered to be doing a bad job as coalition leaders, with low net scores of -44 and -19 respectively. In addition, Ed Miliband has not been able to consolidate the gains made from his strong performance at the party conferences, slipping back to a score of -13.

Cameron lacks Boris’s charisma

Influential Britons view the Mayor of London as ambitious (68%), charismatic (67%) and intelligent (66%), scoring higher than the Prime Minister on all these qualities. Cameron is primarily associated with being upper class, while only one in ten (10%) say he has charisma.

Neither politician is seen as particularly principled or trustworthy. Fewer than one-fifth (19%) of opinion formers think Cameron is principled, while only 11% say the same about Johnson. Meanwhile, one in ten (10%) describe Cameron as trustworthy, compared to 7% for Johnson.

Boris’s loyalty limited

Only 16% of influential Britons think Johnson would fully support the Prime Minister if the Conservative Party looked weak running up to the 2015 election. This compares to over half (53%) that say Johnson would support Cameron in public but agitate against him behind the scenes amongst the party.