Labour party members no longer have confidence in Gordon Brown's leadership - according to an exclusive poll carried out by Channel 4 News. In a damning verdict on the prime minister -a majority think he should step down before the next election - and more than one in five think he should go now.
Two thirds believe Mr Brown isn't able to communicate his ideas effectively to the public - and almost half think he's weak and indecisive. The survey also reveals the impact of the expenses crisis - Mr Brown's approval rating has plummeted from 77% in February to just 54% today.
That gives him the worst performance ratings in Cabinet - the only ministers with lower scores were James Purnell and Jacqui Smith - and both of them have now resigned.
But there's good news for the man widely tipped as the next Labour leader - Alan Johnson - comes top - with an approval rating of 75%. Labour members aren't impressed with the way Mr Brown has dealt with the expenses crisis either. In the survey - just one in four think he's done better than his rival party leaders - David Cameron and Nick Clegg.
And in common with the wider electorate - the scandal has put them off politicians in general - with half of party members saying none of the leaders has handled it well.
There's no comfort for the Prime Minister when it comes to his leadership qualities. Most of the members think he should have sacked Jacqui Smith and Hazel Blears over their expenses earlier - before they took matters into their own hands and resigned. And less than half think reshuffling the Cabinet will do anything to strengthen the Government. In fact - 53% think the party would be better off if Tony Blair was still leader.
When it comes to a potential successor - Alan Johnson comes top of the poll - with 37% - well ahead of the second choice - David Miliband, on just 12%. But just a handful of party members believe either man could lead Labour to victory in the next General election: although slightly more believe it's possible, although unlikely, for Labour to win under Mr Johnson. And although Alastair Darling is still seen as a better Chancellor than Ed Balls - almost half of Labour members don't know - or want a different Chancellor altogether. YouGov contacted some 800 Labour party members around the country for the poll - which was carried out in the wake of Thursday's local and European elections.
Saturday, June 06, 2009
Labour Members Want Brown to Go
From Channel 4 News...