Reputation Survey: The coalition Government - Coalition goodwill takes a nosedive

The Government is less popular than in 2010 and more people have a negative opinion of the Conservatives and Lib Dems than they did when the coalition was formed.

OnePoll: the public's view of the coalition
OnePoll: the public's view of the coalition

Positive sentiment towards the coalition Government has dropped to its lowest level for three years, according to PRWeek/OnePoll's research.

When survey respondents were asked their opinion of the coalition Government in 2010, 36 per cent said either very or quite positive and 30 per cent said quite or very negative. But when asked the same question last week, only 22 per cent said they still felt positively about the Government, while those feeling negative jumped to 52 per cent.

In 2010, 21 per cent said their opinion of the Conservatives was more positive since the coalition was formed. This has dropped to seven per cent. Now, 46 per cent say they have a more negative opinion, compared with 22 per cent in 2010.

Likewise, 57 per cent said their opinion of the Liberal Democrats had become more negative since the general election, compared with 34 per cent in late 2010.

Labour's claim the coalition's policies have pushed the UK back into recession seems to hold weight. Forty-one per cent thought this was the case, while 30 per cent disagreed. Fifty-three per cent believed the coalition's policies unfairly benefited the rich.

Females were more critical of the coalition, particularly on the economy. Fifty-six per cent said they did not think highly of their handling of it compared with 48 per cent of men. The over-55s were also more negative than younger age groups. For example, 64 per cent said the coalition's policies unfairly benefited the rich, compared with 42 per cent of the youngest age group.

Survey of 2,000 members of the public conducted by global research agency OnePoll


There can be little doubt the coalition is having the roughest of rides. From the fuel crisis that wasn't to the 'Bodge-it' (or Budget) that very much was, everything that could go wrong has done so in recent months, leading to this poll showing only 22 per cent have a positive view of the coalition overall.

But there are some glimmers of light in here: 51 per cent either wholly or partly back the spending cuts, while Cameron continues to outscore Miliband. Most importantly, more people rate the Government's performance highly on economic matters than on any other policy area.

Rebuilding the reputation of the Government should focus on those assets - a reputation for economic competence, and a more credible Prime Minister than alternatives.

At the same time, the mishaps that have bedevilled them must cease. Basic competence is a minimum requirement for the electorate, and no clever PR strategy will save them if they cannot demonstrate that.

Lack of trust

77% of respondents said they did not trust politicians on the whole

The economy

51% said if the economy started to grow they would believe other factors outside the Government were mainly responsible

Nick Clegg suffers

44% believed Nick Clegg's reputation had benefited the least from the coalition Government


Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Already registered?
Sign in