June 6, 2020 / 7:30 PM / 2 months ago

UK support for Johnson's Conservatives falls as COVID deaths rise

FILE PHOTO: Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson looks up during question period at the House of Commons in London, Britain June 3, 2020. UK Parliament/Jessica Taylor/Handout via REUTERS

LONDON (Reuters) - Three opinion polls released in Britain on Saturday showed support falling for Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Conservative Party, as public confidence in the government’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic declines.

However, the figures are unlikely to be an immediate concern for Johnson, who does not need to hold an election until 2024 after winning a comfortable parliamentary majority in December.

The sharpest swing came in a poll conducted by Survation on June 3, which had support for the Conservatives falling to 41% from 45% in the previous poll, conducted in the period May 22-26. Support for the opposition Labour Party rose by five points to 39%.

Surveys for Deltapoll and Opinium, both conducted on June 4-5, showed the Conservative lead narrowing to three percentage points.

Opinium said 47% of people surveyed disapproved of the government’s handling of the coronavirus crisis, against 34% who approved, extending a steady deterioration in confidence in the government since the crisis started.

Britain has suffered Europe’s highest reported death toll from COVID-19, with more than 50,000 deaths according to a Reuters tally this week based on official sources.

A survey on Thursday by the market research company Kantar indicated that British people had lost a greater degree of confidence in their government than citizens of any other country in the G7 group of large, advanced economies.

Reporting by David Milliken; Editing by Kevin Liffey

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