Too much sitting on the fence, Keir? Voters admit they don’t know much about Labour leader Starmer’s policies despite almost three years in charge of the party and holding a large poll lead over the Tories
- Redfield and Wilton Strategies polled 1,500 people about Opposition Leader
- Asked what policies they most associated with him, after three years in charge
- ‘Don’t know’ was the most common answer, ahead of issues like the economy
Voters are still massively unsure of Sir Keir Starmer’s policies despite him leading Labour for three years and being favourite to enter No10 at the next election, a new analysis suggests.
Redfield and Wilton Strategies asked 1,500 people what policies they most associated with the Opposition Leader.
It found that ‘don’t know’ the most common answer, ahead of issues like the economy and the cost of living crisis.
Sir Keir has been accused by critics of having a safety first policy and failing to put forward detailed policies despite being less than two years from the next election.
But in recent weeks he and his top team have begun to put flesh on the bones of policies in areas including Brexit and foreign policy, levelling-up and the cost-of-living crisis.
Redfield and Wilton Strategies asked 1,500 people what policies they most associated with the Opposition Leader. It found that ‘don’t know’ the most common answer, ahead of issues like the economy and the cost of living crisis.
Weighing things up: Sir Keir has been accused by critics of having a safety first policy and failing to put forward detailed policies despite being less than two years from the next election.
Sir Keir today suggested the job of Prime Minister is ‘too big’ for a ‘hopelessly weak’ Rishi Sunak.
The Labour leader criticised Mr Sunak for not sacking Tory chairman Nadhim Zahawi over his tax affairs and claimed the Prime Minister is ‘overwhelmed at every turn’.
Mr Sunak insisted he believes in ‘proper due process’ and defended his decision to ask his ethics adviser to investigate whether Mr Zahawi broke ministerial rules over the estimated £4.8 million bill he settled with HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).
The Prime Minister added Sir Keir has ‘no principles’ and accused Labour of ‘simple political opportunism’ for urging him to appoint an ethics adviser then wanting a decision before they had investigated the case.
Mr Zahawi was chancellor at the time the settlement was agreed with HMRC.
Speaking at Prime Minister’s Questions, Sir Keir asked: ‘Does the Prime Minister agree that any politician who seeks to avoid the taxes they owe in this country is not fit to be in charge of taxpayer money?’
Mr Sunak reiterated the issues linked to Mr Zahawi occurred before he became Prime Minister and said ‘more information has come forward’ since he told MPs the matter had been addressed in full.
He added: ‘Of course the politically expedient thing to do would be for me to have said this matter must be resolved by Wednesday at noon, but I believe in proper due process.’
In his concluding remarks, Sir Keir said: ‘We all know why the Prime Minister was reluctant to ask his party chair questions about family finances and tax avoidance.
‘But his failure to sack him when the whole country can see what’s going on shows how hopelessly weak he is – a Prime Minister overseeing chaos, overwhelmed at every turn.
‘He can’t say when ambulances will get to heart attack victims again. He can’t say when the prisons system will keep streets safe again. He can’t even deal with tax avoiders in his own Cabinet.
‘Is he starting to wonder if this job is just too big for him?’
Mr Sunak countered: ‘The difference between him and me is I stand by my values and my principles even when it is difficult.
‘When I disagreed fundamentally with the previous prime minister I resigned from the government.
‘But for four long years he sat next to the member for Islington North (Jeremy Corbyn) – when antisemitism ran rife, when his predecessor sided with our opponents.
‘That’s what’s weak, Mr Speaker. He has no principles and just petty politics.’
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