Boris Johnson’s approval ratings have sunk to a record low after a new poll found almost half of British voters think the prime minister and his party are “corrupt” in the light of a recent lobbying scandal.
It comes as the party voted against the standards watchdog, which recommended suspending former Tory MP Owen Paterson, who resigned last week – and to review the current disciplinary system.
But although the government U-turned on its decisions following public backlash, a new survey by Opinium found Tories’ lead over Labour is now only one percentage point, declining by three points to 37 per cent.
Johnson versus Starmer
And Boris Johnson’s approval rating dropped four per cent to its lowest ever level of -20, with half of the respondents now disagreeing with the job he is doing.
Meanwhile, Labour leader Keir Starmer saw his ratings improving by a point to -9, according to the figures reported by The Independent.
A shocking 48 per cent of voters now think the Tories are “corrupt”, whilst 47 per cent think the same about Johnson – and only 22 per cent think he and his party are “clean and honest”.
The survey results come after a series of controversies involving the Conservatives earlier this year – such as former prime minister David Cameron lobbying the government on behalf of Greensill Capital, and the government allegedly awarding multimillion pound Covid contracts to firms with links to Tory ministers.
Johnson has also been under investigation for how he funded the refurbishment of his Downing Street home, and came under fire after not declaring accommodation he received in Spain from Zac Goldsmith, whom he gave a peerage to.
Meanwhile, the Conservatives have been caught up in a fresh scandal after an investigation found multimillionaires donating at least £3m to the Tories appeared to be ‘guaranteed’ a seat in the House of Lords.
A joint investigation by The Sunday Times and Open Democracy claims to have found evidence of a new “cash for peerages” scandal, as 16 of the party’s main treasurers have reportedly been offered a seat in the Lords over the past 20 years.
The only exception is the most recent one, who stood down two months ago, the probe says.
Since gaining power in 2010, successive Tory Prime Ministers have elevated nine of the party’s former treasurers to the 800-strong chamber, the Sunday Times states.
A number of former Tory ministers have spoken out against the apparent trend, one saying it was a “scandal in plain sight” that was no secret in the party.
But a spokesperson for the Tories told the The Sunday Times: “We do not believe that successful business people and philanthropists who contribute to political causes and parties should be disqualified from sitting in the legislature.”