Poll deals blow to Tory hopes of limiting scandal

Exclusive survey shows two-thirds of voters now dismiss Conservatives as the 'party of the rich'

Two out of three people believe the Conservatives are the "party of the rich," according to a ComRes survey for The Independent, which suggests the cash-for-access affair has damaged David Cameron's party.

The poll shows Labour 10 points ahead, its biggest lead in a ComRes survey for seven years. Labour is on 43 per cent (up three points since the ComRes survey for this newspaper a month ago), with the Conservatives on 33 per cent (down four points), the Liberal Democrats on 11 per cent (down two points) and other parties on 13 per cent (up three points).

Worryingly for Mr Cameron, the findings suggest the disclosures about Tory fundraising may reinforce the perception given by last week's Budget that the party's focus is on looking after the interests of its wealthy backers. George Osborne, the Chancellor, was criticised by Labour for cutting the 50p rate of tax on incomes over £150,000 a year while freezing the tax allowances enjoyed by pensioners. Two-thirds of people (66 per cent) agree with the statement that "the measures announced in the Budget show that the Conservatives are the party of the rich", while 27 per cent disagree and 7 per cent don't know.

One in three (32 per cent) of the Tories' own supporters agree with this statement, while 62 per cent disagree. Seven out of 10 Liberal Democrat voters (70 per cent) view the Tories as "the party of the rich," while just 22 per cent do not. Among people who would vote Labour in a general election held now, 90 per cent see the Tories as the "party of the rich" while 8 per cent disagree.

Mr Osborne's controversial decision to impose a so-called "granny tax" is opposed by the public by a margin of almost 2-1. Some 59 per cent disagree with the statement that "the Government is right to freeze the personal tax allowances of pensioners to bring them into line with those for everyone else", while 31 per cent agree.

Conservative supporters are split over the Chancellor's move. Some 47 per cent agree with his decision while 46 per cent disagree. But it is opposed by a majority of Liberal Democrat and Labour voters. Only 31 per cent of Liberal Democrat supporters agree with it, while 52 per cent disagree. Among Labour voters, 27 per cent agree and 67 per cent disagree.

Perhaps surprisingly, pensioners are not markedly more hostile than the general public. People aged 65 and over disagree with the move by 61 per cent to 30 per cent. Similarly, the Tories have retained their lead among this age group, among whom they are on 42 per cent, with Labour on 35 per cent and the Lib Dems on 8 per cent.

ComRes interviewed 1,000 adults by telephone between 23 March and yesterday 26 March. Data were weighted to be demographically representative of all GB adults and by past vote recall. ComRes is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules. Full tables at www.comres.co.uk

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
  • Get to the point
2015 General Election
May2015

Poll of Polls

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Ashdown Group: Practice Accountant - Bournemouth - £38,000

£32000 - £38000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A successful accountancy practice in...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Uncapped commission: SThree: Does earning a 6 figu...

Recruitment Genius: SEO Executive

£18000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: New Lift Sales Executive - Lift and Elevators

£35000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A challenging opportunity for a...

Day In a Page

The saffron censorship that governs India: Why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression

The saffron censorship that governs India

Zareer Masani reveals why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression
Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Supreme Court rules Dominic Grieve's ministerial veto was invalid
Distressed Zayn Malik fans are cutting themselves - how did fandom get so dark?

How did fandom get so dark?

Grief over Zayn Malik's exit from One Direction seemed amusing until stories of mass 'cutting' emerged. Experts tell Gillian Orr the distress is real, and the girls need support
The galaxy collisions that shed light on unseen parallel Universe

The cosmic collisions that have shed light on unseen parallel Universe

Dark matter study gives scientists insight into mystery of space
The Swedes are adding a gender-neutral pronoun to their dictionary

Swedes introduce gender-neutral pronoun

Why, asks Simon Usborne, must English still struggle awkwardly with the likes of 's/he' and 'they'?
Disney's mega money-making formula: 'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan

Disney's mega money-making formula

'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan
Lobster has gone mainstream with supermarket bargains for £10 or less - but is it any good?

Lobster has gone mainstream

Anthea Gerrie, raised on meaty specimens from the waters around Maine, reveals how to cook up an affordable feast
Easter 2015: 14 best decorations

14 best Easter decorations

Get into the Easter spirit with our pick of accessories, ornaments and tableware
Paul Scholes column: Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season

Paul Scholes column

Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season
Inside the Kansas greenhouses where Monsanto is 'playing God' with the future of the planet

The future of GM

The greenhouses where Monsanto 'plays God' with the future of the planet
Britain's mild winters could be numbered: why global warming is leaving UK chillier

Britain's mild winters could be numbered

Gulf Stream is slowing down faster than ever, scientists say
Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Donation brings total raised by Homeless Veterans campaign to at least £1.25m
Oh dear, the most borrowed book at Bank of England library doesn't inspire confidence

The most borrowed book at Bank of England library? Oh dear

The book's fifth edition is used for Edexcel exams
Cowslips vs honeysuckle: The hunt for the UK’s favourite wildflower

Cowslips vs honeysuckle

It's the hunt for UK’s favourite wildflower
Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

Did a botched blackmail attempt help Cyril Smith escape justice?

A fresh twist reveals the Liberal MP was targeted by the notorious South African intelligence agency Boss