Liz Truss and Rishi Sunak already hugely unpopular in Scotland, poll finds



BOTH candidates for the Tory leadership are deeply unpopular in Scotland, although not quite as disliked as Boris Johnson, a new poll has found.

The Ipsos Mori survey found Foreign Secretary Liz Truss has a net approval rating of -45, while former Chancellor Rishi Sunak was slightly better at -40.

That compares to the current Prime Minister’s historically bad figure of -60.

It suggests whoever takes over in Downing Street will struggle to improve Tory fortunes in Scotland.

The two candidates attended their sole Scottish hustings in Perth on Tuesday, leading to a large and noisy protest outside the venue, including chants of ‘Tory scum’ and egg throwing.

The poll also suggested Scottish Tory members are likely to be disappointed if, as expected, Ms Truss becomes party leader and Prime Minister in September. 

Among those who voted Tory at the 2021 Scottish Parliament election, Mr Sunak was the more popular of the two hopefuls, with 55% support to Ms Truss’s 45%. 

Emily Gray, Managing Director of Ipsos in Scotland, said: “These results show the scale of the challenge the new Prime Minister will face to reverse the Conservatives’ political fortunes in Scotland.

“Irrespective of whether Rishi Sunak or Liz Truss becomes Prime Minister, though, the new Prime Minister looks set to be a little better positioned to turn things around than Boris Johnson was.”

Of the 1,000 people who responded to the survey, 59% had an unfavourable view of Mr Sunak, compared to 19% who had a favourable one and 18% who said they had neither view – creating a net popularity of -40.

Just 15% of the Scots who responded said they had a favourable view of Liz Truss, while 60% had an unfavourable view and 20% held neither view – a net popularity of -45.

But both were considerably more popular than Mr Johnson, with 74% of respondents reacting unfavourably to the outgoing PM, compared to 14% favourably and 11% who held neither view, resulting in a net rating of -60.

UK Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer has a net approval rating of -14 north of the border, Scottish Tory leader Douglas Ross is on -37, and Scottish Labour leader Anas Sawar -4.

Despite being First Minister for almost eight years, Nicola Sturgeon is the only leader with a positive approval rating – currently +11.

SNP Westminster Depute Leader Kirsten Oswald said: “The people of Scotland are sick to death of having Conservative governments, and leaders, rule over them despite not being voted for since 1955. 

“It’s clear that if Scotland had a say in this toxic race to the right, both Liz Truss and Rishi Sunak would be sent packing.

“And with voters also having a negative view on Keir Starmer, it’s clear that no matter what happens, Scotland will lose.

“With the Tories moving further and further to the right, and the Labour party standing shoulder to shoulder with them on austerity cuts and Brexit, there can be no doubt that the only way to escape the damage of Westminster control is to become an independent country.

“By doing so, we can forge a new identity as a forward-thinking, progressive country – and rid ourselves of the Tories and Westminster chaos and corruption once and for all.”

The fieldwork for the survey was carried out between August 12 and 15.





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