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Rishi Sunak is failing at his five priorities, say most Britons in new poll

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The majority of the British public thinks Rishi Sunak is doing a bad job in delivering on his five priorities, a new poll has found.

Almost half a year after the prime minister set out his five key aims – including halving inflation, growing the economy, cutting NHS waiting lists, reducing the national debt and stopping small boat crossings – an Ipsos UK survey found more than 50% of people think the government is doing a bad job on almost all of them.

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In a further blow for Downing Street, the poll found the public tended to think Mr Sunak was doing a worse job on the areas that were most important to them.

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According to the poll, the public’s top priority was easing the cost of living (with 59% listing it as important), followed by ensuring people can get NHS treatment more quickly (54%) and reducing NHS waiting lists (51%).

But 60% said the government was doing a bad job on easing the cost of living, with only 18% saying it was doing a good job and 62% thought it was not delivering on reducing NHS wait times.

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On growing the economy, which 39% listed as one of their priorities, 50% said the government was doing a bad job.

Stopping small boats and ensuring illegal immigrants were swiftly deported was a lower priority for the public, with 29% mentioning it, but it was a much higher priority for people who voted Conservative in 2019 than those who voted Labour.

Almost half of Tory voters listed ensuring the swift removal of illegal immigrants as an important priority – the same number as those who mentioned reducing NHS waiting lists and more than those who listed growing the economy, while only 14% of Labour voters said the same.

Only 15% said they thought reducing the national debt was important.

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Public think Labour would do a better job

The public was more likely to think a Labour government would do a better job than the Tories on each of Mr Sunak’s priorities.

Between a quarter and a third of people thought Sir Keir Starmer‘s party would do a good job on halving inflation, cutting NHS waiting lists and reducing the national debt. Some 21% said Labour would do a good job on stopping small boat crossings.

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But less than 20% thought the same about the government in all of those areas except growing the economy.

Some 22% thought the government was doing a good job on that priority, though this was still lower than Labour’s score of 29%.

Labour government considered better outcome at next election

The poll was carried out between 26 and 30 May and surveyed 2,200 British adults about the government’s priorities and their thoughts on the outcome of the next general election.

It found the public was more likely to prefer options that involved a Labour government than a Conservative one, with 39% saying a Labour majority would be a great outcome and 31% saying the same about a coalition between Labour and the Liberal Democrats.

Only 27% said a Tory majority would be a good outcome, with 17% backing a Conservative-Lib Dem coalition.

The only Labour option to score less than a Conservative majority was a Labour minority reliant on support from the SNP, which 22% said would be a good outcome.

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