Gerard Lyons backs Liz Truss's economic plan

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Liz Truss took over from Boris Johnson as Prime Minister this week. While she inherits a large majority in the House of Commons, her support among parliamentary colleagues and the British people remains uncertain. Less than 48 hours after she took office, new polling has revealed a larger share of the public think Sir Keir Starmer would do a good job as Prime Minister.

After enjoying a comfortable lead in the polling throughout the summer, Liz Truss defeated Rishi Sunak in the Conservative leadership race.

On Tuesday, Ms Truss succeeded Boris Johnson to become the UK’s third female Prime Minister.

However, many of her party’s 357 MPs did not declare their support for her leadership bid, her rival Rishi Sunak coming out on top of all early rounds of MP ballots.

Despite winning the contest with 57 percent of the vote – 14 points ahead of Mr Sunak – Ms Truss’s mandate from the party membership was not as large as expected.

Although she enters office with an 80-seat majority in the Commons, the landslide victory for the Conservatives in 2019 is widely attributed to Mr Johnson, leaving Ms Truss’s support from the public in doubt.

On the day Ms Truss and Sir Keir Starmer first spar during PMQs, new research by Ipsos shows more people think the Labour leader would do a good job as Prime Minister.

Conducted after the conclusion of the Conservative leadership election – on Monday September 5 and Tuesday September 6 – the poll found 40 percent of Brits believed Sir Keir Starmer would do well as Prime Minister, relative to 33 percent for Ms Truss.

Just over a quarter of respondents, 27 percent, thought the Labour leader would do badly in the top job, down four percentage points from July.

Meanwhile, 35 percent answered that they thought the incumbent Prime Minister will do a bad job in the role, up by three percentage points from July.

READ MORE: Liz Truss suspends legislation to ban ECHR from overruling UK courts

Keiran Pedley, Director of Politics at Ipsos, said: “These results show the challenging political situation the new Prime Minister faces. 

“Although Liz Truss is becoming better known among the public, the jury is out on whether she will do a good job as Prime Minister. 

“Therefore, she will need to hit the ground running in terms of addressing key public concerns, in order to close the gap with Starmer and Labour that appears to have opened up over the summer.

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Among those who voted for Labour in the last general election in 2019, just under two-thirds, 65 percent, believed the party leader would do a good job as Prime Minister, according to Ipsos.

Of those who voted Conservative, a smaller majority of 53 percent expect their new leader to perform well as Prime Minister.

These findings are echoed by a new poll conducted by, which asked readers if they thought Ms Truss would do a good job as Prime Minister.

Running from Monday September 5, to Wednesday September 7, 2,271 people responded, with a slender majority of 54 percent (1,234 people) answering positively.

Just under a quarter of respondents, 24 percent (537 people), believe she will not do a good job, with the remaining 22 percent (500 people) said that they did not know.

Recent polling by YouGov paints an even more damning picture, with a majority of Britons believing Ms Truss will be a worse leader than every other going back to Margaret Thatcher, with the exception of her predecessor.

In a survey taken between August 29 and 30, 39 percent of respondents said they thought Mr Johnson was a “Terrible” Prime Minister, while 35 percent said they thought the same would prove true of Ms Truss.

In terms of the key issues – from Russia to the NHS to the cost-of-living – few among the British public trust Ms Truss to make the right decisions for the country, according to YouGov.

When asked how she would fare in comparison to her predecessor, respondents to the survey said she would do a worse job on all counts except restoring trust in politics and education.

Indeed, it seems the incoming Prime Minister has a lot to prove to the public who will decide her fate as leader in the next general election. 

When asked about voting intentions if a general election were to be held tomorrow, the most recent YouGov poll put the Conservatives 15 points behind Labour – their largest deficit since 2013.

Ms Truss also faces the difficult task of rallying a divided Conservative Party behind her.

As the outcome of the Tory leadership contest looked certain, a senior ally of Ms Truss told The Times: “For Liz just governing is going to be impossible, never mind uniting the party. 

“They will move against her. The winter is going to be awful. If she does badly in the May election they will get rid of her. The party is on the point of meltdown.”

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