Labour members’ support for Jeremy Corbyn has stayed very strong since his election in September, new polling shows.
A YouGov study commissioned by the Election Data website found 72 per cent of Labour members approved of Mr Corbyn, with 17 per cent disapproving.
Mr Corbyn won the Labour leadership with a knock-out blow in the first round of the contest – with 59.5 per cent of the vote.
The high support was despite 41 per cent of Labour members saying it was unlikely that Mr Corbyn would win the next election in 2020.
The poll also shows that if Labour had another leadership election in which Mr Corbyn and his close ally John McDonnell did not stand, a plurality of members would simply not vote.
“This is a surprising result but Would Not Vote is ineligible due to the fact that it is not a human being at all but a statement of intent, Election Data wrote in its analysis.
“Presumably those members who would not vote in such a scenario are so angry at the impertinence of the question they express their dissatisfaction through choosing not to vote at all.”
The party has practically doubled in size since Mr Corbyn won the leadership election – with the flood of new members apparently favouring the Labour leader.
The most ridiculous claims made about Jeremy Corbyn
The most ridiculous claims made about Jeremy Corbyn
1/11 He called Hezbollah and Hamas ‘friends’
True. In a speech made to the Stop the War Coalition in 2009, Mr Corbyn called representatives from both groups “friends” after inviting them to Parliament. He later told Channel 4 he wanted both groups, who have factions designated as international terror organisations, to be “part of the debate” for the Middle East peace process. “I use (the word ‘friends’) in a collective way, saying our friends are prepared to talk,” he added. “Does it mean I agree with Hamas and what it does? No. Does it mean I agree with Hezbollah and what they do? No.”
2/11 ‘Jeremy Corbyn thinks the death of Osama bin Laden was a tragedy’
Partly false. David Cameron used this as a line of attack at the Conservative Party conference but appears to have left out all context from Mr Corbyn’s original remarks. In an 2011 interview on Iranian television, the then-backbencher said the fact the al-Qaeda leader was not put on trial was the tragedy, continuing: “The World Trade Center was a tragedy, the attack on Afghanistan was a tragedy, the war in Iraq was a tragedy.”
3/11 He is ‘haunted’ by the legacy of his ‘evil’ great-great-grandfather
False. A Daily Express exposé revealed that the Labour leader’s ancestor, James Sargent, was the “despotic” master of a Victorian workhouse. Addressing the report at the Labour conference, Mr Corbyn said he had never heard of him before, adding: “I want to take this opportunity to apologise for not doing the decent thing and going back in time and having a chat with him about his appalling behaviour.”
4/11 Jeremy Corbyn raised a motion about ‘pigeon bombs’ in Parliament
This one is true. On 21 May 2004, Mr Corbyn raised an early day motion entitled “pigeon bombs”, proposing that the House register being “appalled but barely surprised” that MI5 reportedly proposed to load pigeons with explosives as a weapon. The motion continued: “The House… believes that humans represent the most obscene, perverted, cruel, uncivilised and lethal species ever to inhabit the planet and looks forward to the day when the inevitable asteroid slams into the earth and wipes them out thus giving nature the opportunity to start again.” It was not carried.
5/11 He rides a Communist bicycle
False. A report in The Times referred to Mr Corbyn, known for his cycling, riding a “Chairman Mao-style bicycle” earlier this year. “Less thorough journalists might have referred to it as just a bicycle, but no, so we have to conclude that whenever we see somebody on a bicycle from now on, there goes another supporter of Chairman Mao,” he later joked.
6/11 'Jeremy Corbyn will appoint a special minister for Jews'
False so far. The Sun report in December was allegedly based on a “rumour” passed to the paper by a Daily Express columnist who has written pieces critical of the Labour leader in the past. The minister did not materialise in his shadow cabinet.
7/11 ‘Jeremy Corbyn wishes Britain would abolish its Army’
False. Another gem from The Sun took comments made at a Hiroshima remembrance parade in August 2012 where Mr Corbyn supported Costa Rica’s move to abolish it armed forces. “Wouldn’t it be wonderful if every politician around the world…abolished the army and took pride in the fact that they don’t have an army,” he added. The caveat that “every politician” must take the step suggests Mr Corbyn does not support UK disarmament just yet.
8/11 Jeremy Corbyn stole sandwiches meant for veterans
False. The Guido Fawkes blog claimed that the Labour leader took sandwiches meant for veterans at at Battle of Britain memorial service in September but a photo later emerged showing him being handed one by Costa volunteers, who later confirmed they were given to all guests.
9/11 He missed the induction into the Queen’s privy council
True. After much speculation about Mr Corbyn’s republican views and willingness to bow to the monarch, his office confirmed that he did not attend the official induction to the privy council because of a prior engagement, but did not rule out joining the body.
10/11 Jeremy Corbyn refuses to sing the national anthem.
Partly true. The Labour leader was filmed standing in silence as God Save the Queen was sung at a Battle of Britain remembrance service but will reportedly sing it in future. Mr Corbyn was elusive on the issue in an interview, saying he would show memorials “respect in the proper way”, but sources said he would sing the anthem at future occasions.
11/11 He is a member of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Cheese
True. The group lists its purpose as the following: “To increase awareness of issues surrounding the dairy industry and focus on economic issues affecting the dairy industry and producers.”
Women members were particularly supportive of the leader, with 78 per cent in favour, 18 points net higher than men when including disapprovals. Young people were also 11 points net more supportive than those over 60.
The party’s middle class ABC1 social grade members were less supportive than its working class C2DE members with a nine-point gap in net support.
Londoners were the least supportive of Mr Corbyn compared to the rest of the country, where support was spread broadly equally,
The study however shows a big contrast between the views of Labour members, the party’s more casual voters, and the general public.
Approval was still positive but less overwhelming for Labour voters – who liked Mr Corbyn by 43 per cent to 26 per cent against.
The British public at large however disapproved of Mr Corbyn by a similar margin – 47 per cent against and 23 per cent in favour.Reuse content