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The Times Poll - February 2010

Fieldwork: February 5th 2010 - February 7th 2010

published by The Times

Change since previous Times poll (January 6th-8th 2010) shown in brackets

Labour 30% (+2%)
Conservative 40% (-1%)
Lib Dem 20% (+1%)
Others 10% (-2%)

The 10% for ‘Others' breaks down as:

UKIP 2%
Green 4%
BNP 1%
SNP 2%

I'd like to ask how optimistic or pessimistic you are about Britain's economy. Thinking about all the things that may affect the economy - such as changes in salaries and wages, the level of interest rates and tax, the rates of inflation and unemployment, and the strength of the pound – how do you think the British economy will fare over the next year a) for the country as a whole, b) for you and your family

 Mar 04Nov 04Apr 05Nov 05Mar 07Sep 07Apr 08Jul 08Nov 08Jan 09Feb 09Mar 09Jun 09Jul 09Nov 09Dec 09Feb 10
Country as a whole - Well64%64%77%64%56%53%39%22%31%18%20%20%32%25%33%35%37%
Country as a whole - Badly29%28%19%28%36%45%59%77%66%79%77%78%63%73%64%62%58%
Country as a Whole: Net+35%+36%+58%+36%+20%+8%-20%-55%-35%-61%-57%-58%-31%-48%-31%-27%-21%
Me & Family - Well63%63%75%63%60%61%50%32%51%46%49%47%46%46%50%49%51%
Me & Family - Badly31%28%19%28%34%34%47%66%44%50%48%51%50%52%46%47%45%
Me & Family: Net+32%+35%+56%+35%+26%+27%+3%-34%+7%-4%+1%-4%-4%-6%+4%+2%+6%

The next general election, for Westminster MPs, has to take place by June this year. Which of the following do you think is the most likely result at the next general election?
[Change since January shown in brackets]

 Apr-09May-09Jul-09Sep-09Oct-09Nov-09Dec-09Jan-10Feb-10
Big Conservative majority16%14%14%17%14%14%12%9%7%
Small Conservative majority39%37%37%40%43%36%35%37%36%
Hung Parliament - Conservatives largest party12%13%15%12%11%15%13%13%20%
Hung Parliament - Labour largest party7%10%10%8%6%11%9%9%13%
Small Labour majority14%9%10%11%12%11%14%15%13%
Big Labour majority4%5%5%6%4%5%5%4%3%
 Apr-09May-09Jul-09Sep-09Oct-09Nov-09Dec-09Jan-10Feb-10
Conservative majority55%51%51%57%57%50%47%46%43%
Hung Parliament19%23%25%20%17%26%22%22%33%
Labour majority18%14%15%17%16%16%19%19%16%
Don't know8%12%9%6%10%8%12%14%9%
 Apr-09May-09Jul-09Sep-09Oct-09Nov-09Dec-09Jan-10Feb-10
Conservatives largest party67%64%66%69%68%65%60%59%63%
Labour largest party25%24%25%25%22%27%28%28%29%
Don't know8%12%9%6%10%8%12%14%9%

With Britain's economy facing problems in the months or years ahead, who do you most trust to deal with it in the best interests of Britain?

 Aug-07Sep-07Oct-07Feb-08Mar-08May-08Sep-08Oct-08Nov-08Dec-08Jan-09Mar-09Jun-09Oct-09Dec-09Jan-10Feb-10
Brown & Darling61%56%43%38%43%30%31%36%38%40%38%33%27%28%32%30%32%
Cameron & Osborne27%18%28%34%40%40%38%33%35%31%35%37%39%41%46%43%39%
Neither/Don't know12%26%29%28%17%30%31%31%27%29%27%30%34%31%22%28%29%
Brown & Darling lead34%38%15%4%3%-10%-7%3%3%9%3%-4%-12%-13%-14%-13%-7%

I am going to read out some pairs of statements. Please say in each case which one is closest to your view, even if neither phrase exactly represents your view.

 AllMenWomenABC1C2DELabConLD
Britain's best years are behind us45%49%42%50%40%49%44%29%49%45%
Britain's best years are still to come50%47%53%45%54%49%52%64%47%53%
Net 'best years are behind us'-5%2%-11%5%-14%0%-8%-35%2%-8%
 AllMenWomenABC1C2DELabConLD
I was happier 10 years ago46%48%44%38%41%50%59%35%48%44%
I am happier now48%45%50%57%53%44%33%59%47%51%
Net 'happier 10 years ago'-2%3%-6%-19%-12%6%26%-24%1%-7%
 AllMenWomenABC1C2DELabConLD
I look forward to the future with anxiety38%39%38%39%32%43%43%25%43%35%
I look forward to the future with optimism60%60%61%60%67%56%54%75%56%65%
Net 'look forward with anxiety'-22%-21%-23%-21%-35%-13%-11%-50%-13%-30%
 AllMenWomenABC1C2DELabConLD
My children's life will be worse than mine37%35%39%33%39%38%39%26%42%37%
My children's life will be better than mine55%57%52%58%54%57%50%69%49%55%
Net 'children's life worse'-18%-22%-13%-25%-15%-19%-11%-43%-7%-18%
 AllMenWomenABC1C2DELabConLD
Britain is going off in the wrong direction64%64%63%65%64%65%62%35%74%64%
Britain is on the right track31%33%29%32%31%24%35%61%22%32%
Net 'wrong direction'33%31%34%33%33%41%27%-26%52%32%

Please say whether you agree or disagree with each of the following statements

% agreeingAllMenWomenABC1C2DELabConLD
It is time for a change82%76%86%82%80%87%79%58%94%74%
I would emigrate to another country if I could42%42%41%45%41%45%36%34%38%50%
People who play by the rules always get a raw deal68%66%69%65%64%73%70%54%71%72%
Society is broken in Britain70%63%76%66%73%74%69%54%76%66%
Politics is broken in Britain73%71%75%78%70%78%67%61%74%67%
There are far fewer people in public life that I admire than there used to be77%75%79%77%80%76%75%69%81%79%
I hardly recognise the country I'm living in anymore56%50%62%50%54%61%62%39%61%58%
Net agreementAllMenWomenABC1C2DELabConLD
It is time for a change66%55%75%66%62%77%60%18%89%49%
I would emigrate to another country if I could-15%-16%-16%-9%-16%-8%-28%-32%-22%0%
People who play by the rules always get a raw deal38%34%41%31%29%49%45%10%44%44%
Society is broken in Britain42%27%54%33%46%49%41%9%53%33%
Politics is broken in Britain48%42%54%57%41%58%39%25%50%35%
There are far fewer people in public life that I admire than there used to be57%53%60%55%63%55%54%43%65%59%
I hardly recognise the country I'm living in anymore13%0%25%0%9%22%24%-21%22%16%

I'd like to find out how satisfied or dissatisfied you are with various specific aspects of life in Britain. Answering on a scale of 0 to 10, where 0 means very dissatisfied indeed and 10 means very satisfied indeed, what is your overall view of each of the following?

Average score (0-10 scale)All
The NHS6.51
Schools6.31
The police5.96
The service you get from companies that provide the services you use5.47
How well local government does its job4.91
The way elderly people are treated4.51
The way poor people are treated4.43
How well national government does its job4.42
The political system as a whole4.32

How widespread do you think the abuse is by MPs of their system of expenses and allowances?
(Change since April 2009 shown in brackets)

 AllMenWomenABC1C2DELabConLD
All or nearly all MPs do it27%
(-)
28%
(+2%)
27%
(-1%)
23%
(+5%)
29%
(+4%)
31%
(+2%)
29%
(-6%)
22%
(-2%)
23%
(-7%)
27%
(+9%)
A majority of MPs do it, but many do not38%
(-4%)
38%
(-6%)
38%
(-2%)
40%
(-2%)
38%
(-5%)
41%
(-1%)
31%
(-9%)
44%
(+7%)
44%
(+2%)
29%
(-17%)
A majority of MPs do not do it, but many do23%
(+3%)
23%
(+3%)
22%
(+3%)
25%
(-2%)
25%
(+5%)
19%
(+3%)
21%
(+7%)
25%
(+1%)
24%
(+2%)
28%
(+2%)
Very few MPs do it10%
(+2%)
10%
(+4%)
11%
(+1%)
11%
(+2%)
7%
(-4%)
10%
(+5%)
16%
(+11%)
7%
(-4%)
8%
(+3%)
7%
(+2%)

Do you think that your local constituency MP abuses the system of Parliamentary expenses and allowances?
(Change since April 2009 shown in brackets)

 AllMenWomenABC1C2DELabConLD
Yes46%
(+12%)
49%
(+12%)
43%
(+12%)
44%
(+15%)
45%
(+13%)
49%
(+8%)
45%
(+9%)
46%
(+12%)
40%
(+7%)
41%
(+12%)
No42%
(+4%)
40%
(+1%)
44%
(+6%)
43%
(-4%)
43%
(+3%)
39%
(+8%)
43%
(+10%)
49%
(+6%)
50%
(+9%)
51%
(+7%)
Don't know12%
(-16%)
11%
(-13%)
13%
(-18%)
13%
(-11%)
12%
(-16%)
12%
(-15%)
12%
(-19%)
6%
(-17%)
10%
(-16%)
9%
(-18%)
Net ‘YES'+4%
(+8%)
+9%
(+11%)
-1%
(+6%)
+1%
(+19%)
+2%
(+10%)
+10%
(0%)
+2%
(-1%)
-3%
(+6%)
-10%
(-2%)
-10%
(+5%)

A report was published this week listing all of the MPs who have been required to repay money they had claimed in expenses and allowances. If your own MP, in the constituency where you live, was among those required to repay money, would you vote against them purely on those grounds and regardless of the party you support, or would you take other issues, such as party policies and the qualities of other candidates into account in deciding how to vote?

 AllMenWomenABC1C2DELabConLD
Would vote against them purely on those grounds32%29%35%26%27%37%39%26%28%38%
Would take other factors into account in deciding how to vote63%65%61%71%69%55%54%72%69%60%
Net 'would vote against them purely on those grounds'-31%36%-26%-45%-42%-18%-15%-46%-41%-22%
.