Rishi Sunak, the former British finance minister now in the race for the prime minister post, would have a significant edge over his rival Liz Truss among swing voters if he became the PM, a poll indicated on Thursday. The YouGov poll surveyed almost 5,000 Britons to come up with the result, news agency Reuters reported. Sunak faces Foreign Secretary Truss in the PM race, and is said to be trailing.
According to the report, however, YouGov said Sunak’s net favourability score was -25 against Truss’s -45 among those who voted Conservative in 2019 but now plan to vote Labour. Net favourability score is the percentage of people who have a ‘favourable’ opinion minus that of Britons who have an ‘unfavourable’ opinion.
In a statement, YouGov said: “Although both Rishi Sunak and Liz Truss are considerably unpopular with the public as a whole, Sunak has a significant edge over Truss among swing voters.”
Truss is currently the bookmakers’ favourite to succeed former PM Boris Johnson, who stepped down earlier this month after a revolt that saw mass resignations from his cabinet following a series of scandals. In fact, it was Sunak’s resignation from the cabinet earlier that helped trigger the revolt.
Sunak and Truss, the final two candidates eyeing the PM post, have started to take on each other in a televised debate. The first debate took place on Monday, and there will be three such live TV debates and four husting events for members of the ruling Conservative Party who will ultimately decide on the next leader.
According to YouGov, Truss last week held a 24-point lead over the former FM among the ruling Conservative Party, Reuters had reported earlier.
Members of the Conservative Party will begin receiving their postal votes next week. The winner will be decided by a ballot of the around 2 lakh Conservative members. The announcement is due on September 5.