Although a majority of the public approves of David Cameron’s statement last month that Pakistan ‘looks both ways’ on terrorism, only a minority rate him highly as an ‘international statesman’ and most think he is not as capable as former Prime Minister Tony Blair, according to a recent poll for the Sunday Times.
Two thirds (66%) of British adults agree with David Cameron’s comments regarding Pakistan, while only 15% disapprove, confirming that his remarks are endorsed by the majority. This goodwill does not extend towards his approach to foreign affairs more generally however, as only 30% judge him to be a ‘good international statesman’ compared to 43% who do not.
Perhaps the public feels that Cameron has yet to prove himself, as while support runs broadly along party political lines, 27% say they aren’t sure if, ‘from what they have seen’, Cameron fits into the ‘statesman’ category.
Despite some misgivings about the PM’s performance on the international stage so far, though, he is still expected to perform better than immediate predecessor Gordon Brown. A comfortable 45% of the public expects the current PM to be a better international statesman than the Scot, while 27% expect him to be worse. However, when asked to compare him to Tony Blair, only 30% think the former will perform better than the latter on the international stage, compared to 41% who think he will not match up to Blair’s record.