Page last updated at 09:28 GMT, Tuesday, 8 July 2008 10:28 UK

Poll watch: June 2008

In the latest Poll Watch, the BBC's political research editor, David Cowling, reviews the political opinion polls published in the UK in June.

Gordon Brown
Mr Brown marked his first anniversary as PM in June

June marked the first anniversary of Gordon Brown's premiership - and the public's verdict in the polls proved far from complimentary.

ICM/Guardian (sampled 20-22 June) reminded respondents that Mr Brown had taken over from Tony Blair one year ago and asked whether the prime minister's "personal leadership style has proved to be a change for the better or a change for the worse?"

Some 74% answered "for the worse" and this group included 60% of Labour voters (overall 14% said "for the better", including 28% of Labour voters).

Once again contrasting him with Mr Blair, ICM asked respondents if they thought Mr Brown's "policies are a change for the better or a change for the worse?"

Green taxes

They found 64% who said "for the worse", compared with 20% who answered "for the better" (Labour voters divided between 43% who said better and 45% who said worse).

Polls throughout the month highlighted the problems politicians face when attempting to address environmental issues.

ICM/Guardian (sampled 28-29 June) found 52% who thought tackling environmental issues should be the government's main priority, compared with 44% who chose tackling economic problems.

Populus/Times concentrated on knife crime and found 70% agreement that this was the result of 'deep seated social problems to which there is no quick-fix solution'

And 63% supported green taxes "designed to discourage things that are harmful to the environment".

However, whilst 30% thought green taxes should be introduced regardless of present economic problems, 36% thought they should be delayed (31% opposed any green taxes).

ComRes/Independent on Sunday (sampled 11-12 June) found 53% disagreed with the proposition that drivers of "gas guzzlers" should pay much higher car tax, even if they bought their car some time ago.

Stop and search

And Populus/Times (sampled 6-8 June) registered 88% in favour of scrapping the proposed 2p increase in petrol duty, and 67% who favoured both scrapping the 2p increase and cutting the current level of petrol duty.

Populus/Times (sampled 6-8 June) also looked at knife crime and found 70% agreement that this was the result of "deep seated social problems to which there is no quick-fix solution" (20% disagreed).

Two in three (65%) thought increased stop and search for weapons would significantly reduce such crime (25% disagreed).

Political sympathies

Some 85% agreed that tougher sentencing for those carrying weapons and those convicted of knife-related crimes would have a significant effect; and nine out of ten (89%) favoured prosecuting anyone over the age of 16 caught in possession of a knife.

And they found little sympathy for the parents of children caught in possession of knives: 62% thought the parents should be prosecuted, as well as the children.

MORI/Unison (sampled 13-15 June) probed the issue of private company involvement in the provision of public services.

The poll found 79% agreement that public services should be run by "the government or local authorities, rather than by private companies" (up from 66% in 2000); and 77% agreement that staff providing public services "should be employed by the government or local authorities rather than by private companies" (up from 61% in 2000).

Another MORI poll conducted at the same time asked respondents to define themselves in terms of their own political views.

Some 14% defined themselves as New Labour and 17% as Old Labour (among Labour voters, 38% said New and 39% said Old).

A further 11% defined themselves as One Nation Tory and 14% as Thatcherite Tory (among Conservative voters, 26% said One Nation and 37% said Thatcherite).

Whilst 13% nationally defined themselves as Liberal, 56% of Lib Dem voters did so (15% described themselves as Social Democrat, 11% as Labour and 6% as Tory).

Poll watch: Election number crunching
02 May 08 |  UK Politics
Poll Watch: March 2008
09 Apr 08 |  UK Politics
Poll Watch: February 2008
03 Mar 08 |  UK Politics
Poll Watch: January 2008
08 Feb 08 |  UK Politics
Poll Watch: Review of 2007
21 Dec 07 |  UK Politics
Poll Watch: November 2007
07 Dec 07 |  UK Politics
Poll Watch: October 2007
08 Nov 07 |  UK Politics

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