If Boris Johnson was leader of the Conservative Party, would his presence reverse the party’s declining fortunes? This is the million dollar question on the mind of many Tories after the Mayor’s summer of success. YouGov have attempted to provide an answer by putting two scenarios to the public for the next general election — one with David Cameron leading the Conservatives and the other with Boris.
In a theoretical election with Boris as leader, more people stated they would vote Conservative, significantly reducing Labour’s lead, which is at seven points under a Cameron-led election. However, the increased voting share would not be enough to take the Tories back into government, as the chart below shows:
Breaking down the voting intentions shows that in a Boris-led scenario, he would bring in 92 per cent of Conservative voters, compared to 97 per cent under Cameron. However, the blonde one would grab an extra seven and ten per cent of Labour and Lib Dem vote as well as reeling in three per cent more of the female vote, a problem area for the Prime Minister.
Looking at the voting intentions by region, Boris would take a larger share of the overall vote than Cameron in London (not surprisingly), the South and the Midlands. He would even manage to push the Tory vote forward by a few points in Scotland and the North.
The most disturbing news for the Prime Minister lies in the personal ratings disparity between himself and Johnson. The Mayor of London easily surpasses all other party leaders with his charisma ratings but Boris scores significantly higher than Cameron in every other area:
The voting intentions under a Boris premiership aren’t strong enough to create a major problem for Cameron. Only if/when a Boris leadership would put the Tories ahead of Labour will he find himself with a serious threat to deal with. But the polling does show that for now, the public finds Boris the more popular person. More importantly, the polling suggests he is able to reach parts of the electorate that David Cameron and the Tories can presently only dream of.