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Most people now believe takeaway coffee shops, cafes and children’s nurseries should be closed in a further tightening of the national lockdown, according to the latest Opinium poll for the Observer.
A majority of voters also think lockdown rules should be tightened on outside exercise with a ban on people walking or exercising with anyone from a different household.
The findings are in line with a growing view among voters that the government is not responding fast or strongly enough to the virus.
The proportion who think ministers are under-reacting is now 51% (+7 points) compared with a week ago, while the proportion who think they haven’t reacted quickly enough is 75%, (up 3) on last week and the highest Opinium has recorded. This latter figure includes 60% of people who voted Conservative at the last general election in December 2019.
Some 51% believe takeaway coffee shops and cafes should close while 61% say it is time for nurseries to shut. There are broadly similar majorities in favour of tighter rules on outside exercise (53%), with 55% supporting the suspension of click and collect services in all but essential shops.
Labour holds a four-point lead over the Conservatives in the latest poll, on 41% (up 1 point on a week ago) with the Tories on 37% (-2). This is the joint highest lead Opinium has recorded for Labour since the last election. The Liberal Democrats and SNP are on 6%, the Green Party on 4%, and Plaid Cymru on 1%.
Johnson has also recorded his lowest score on Opinium’s “best prime minister” tracker, with just 29% picking him against 32% who would prefer Labour leader Keir Starmer. Johnson also records his lowest net approval since the last general election in December 2019, at -14 (34% approve while 49% disapprove).
Starmer’s net approval has also dropped since last week from +15 to +10 now. Just 37% approve of the job he is doing as Labour leader, with 27% disapproving.
Adam Drummond of Opinium said: “One of the consistent themes of this pandemic has been a government which is petrified of being punished by the voters for putting in place too many restrictions, and a public crying out for further restrictions because they are petrified of the spread of the virus.
“The data from this week’s poll is probably the most extreme example of this trend, and perhaps one of the reasons why we have seen such a drop in support for the government.”
Just 30% (-1) now approve of how the government has handled Coronavirus, compared to 50% (+2) who disapprove.
Source: The Guardian
Keyword: Close coffee shops and nurseries during lockdown, voters say in new poll | Coronavirus