As Johnson launches CON membership polling finds his backers more likely to want a no deal Brexit and less emphasis on climate change

June 12th, 2019


Would a PM Johnson try to please those who got him there?

The above findings are from recent YouGov polling of CON members – the group that in in a week or so will decide on who should be the next party leader and, of course next PM. Tomorrow CON MPs hold the first round of voting in the process of whittling down to two names which will go to the membership in a postal ballot.

The data from an ongoing study of party memberships led Prof Tim Bale of QMUL and Paul Webb of Sussex University a report of which has just been published.

The approach to Brexit is not that surprising but  it is climate change which sees a bigger gap between Johnson backers and those supporting Gove or Hunt. They note that:

“…grassroots Conservatives can hardly be said to be representative of the country as a whole, either demographically or ideologically. There are far more men among them than there are women; most of them live in the southern half of the country; they are generally pretty well-off; they are relatively old (although not quite as ancient as often suggested); they are very, very white; and they are also significantly more right wing than the average voter – whether we’re talking about their economic or social attitudes.”

Given that this will be the first time that a party membership ballot chooses someone who become PM expect a lot more examination of CON members in the next few weeks.

Mike Smithson