Bulletproof Boris

Freddie SayersEditor-in-Chief of YouGov
March 28, 2013, 2:27 PM GMT+0

After a week of intense scrutiny and hostile media coverage, Boris Johnson's national reputation as a political leader emerges stronger; for the first time a Boris-led Conservative Party would eliminate the Labour lead

When voters are asked to imagine how they would vote if Boris Johnson was Conservative leader, the poll lead that the Labour Party enjoys over the Cameron-led Conservatives disappears, and the two parties draw neck and neck.

After a turbulent week of media scrutiny, including a hostile and highly personal interview on the BBC on Sunday, a much-publicised investigative documentary on Tuesday and countless column inches, many people expected that Mr Johnson's reputation in the eyes of voters would be tarnished. Instead, it seems to be enhanced.

YouGov asked the identical question last week before the media scutiny began - a Boris leadership still provided a 5-point increase for the Conservatives, but the net result was still 2 points behind Labour.

In a further boost for Mr Johnson, and blow to Mr Cameron, voters were asked who they thought would make a better leader of the Conservative party - both in October 2012 and again this week after the BBC coverage. Once again the Mayor not only retains but extends his lead over the Prime Minister.