Confidence in Brown takes
30-point dive as lost data crisis deepens
Friday November 23, 2007
THE lost data crisis has sent public confidence in
Gordon Brown's government plummeting, a poll revealed last night.
Only about a quarter (26 per cent) of voters said they now considered
the Prime Minister's administration "competent and capable"
- down 30 points in almost three months.
The Populus survey also showed the proportion of voters confident
of Labour's ability to handle economic problems had more than
halved from 61 per cent to 28 per cent.
The latest figures - which also reflect public concern over handling
of the Northern Rock crisis - came as a second poll showed the
Tories surging into a remarkable nine-point lead.
(Article continues below)
A YouGov survey for Channel 4 News put the Tories in one of their
best positions for 15 years on 41 per cent - less than two months
since the same poll had Labour 11 points in front.
Voter intentions were gauged following the revelations that the
personal details of 25 million people had been lost by HM Revenue
and Customs (HMRC) - sparking an identity theft scare.
Both polls came as ministers' attempts to blame a single junior
official for the loss of the two discs containing the database
were challenged after it emerged that senior HMRC figures knew
of the plans.
Internal e-mails from HMRC showed that senior civil servants
were aware that confidential information was being sent to the
National Audit Office (NAO).