Poll Shows Corbyn Out of Touch with His Own Party

Even British Labour Party voters think their new leader’s views are too far to the left.

People are reflected in a Labour Party sign at a conference in Brighton, England, September 28, 2009
People are reflected in a Labour Party sign at a conference in Brighton, England, September 28, 2009 (iStock/Oli Scarff)

A new poll shows the views of Britain’s new Labour Party leader, Jeremy Corbyn, and his supporters are not only out of tune with the electorate at large but with the rest of the left-wing party.

Political analysts as well as former party leaders like Tony Blair warned that Corbyn’s platform — which includes free university education, the renationalization of utilities and rail, more generous welfare spending, withdrawal from NATO and unilateral nuclear disarmament — would be too far to the left to appeal to even traditional Labour voters.

YouGov polling for the New Statesman magazines bear out those warnings.

Two-thirds of those who backed Corbyn for the leadership say they want higher taxes to alleviate poverty, abolish private schools and get rid of the monarchy. But only between 26 and 42 percent of Labour Party voters share those views.

72 percent of Corbyn’s supporters believe free-market competition is wasteful and an excuse to exploit workers. Less than half of those who voted for Labour in May agree and only a quarter of those who might in 2020 do.

Perhaps most revealingly, only 31 to 43 percent of Labour’s voters are sure that Corbyn would make a better prime minister than George Osborne, David Cameron’s likely successor as Conservative Party leader.