There is some ComRes polling for ITV’s News at Ten on the ongoing phone hacking scandal. 82% of people think Rebekah Brooks should resign, 4% do not and 14% aren’t sure. last week ComRes found 75% of people wanted her to resign or be sacked, but the question appears to have been different so they are not comparable.

49% of people think that David Cameron has handled the issue badly (there is no figure for handling it well), 68% agreed that he had shown poor judgement in hiring Andy Coulson.

Slightly better news for Cameron is that he is the most trusted party leader to sort the issue out – 27% trust Cameron, 16% Miliband, 7% Clegg. 50% of respondents, however, say they do not trust any of party leaders to deal with it.

Meanwhile YouGov’s daily poll for the Sun has topline figures of CON 35%, LAB 43%, LDEM 10% – continuing to show a Labour lead of 8-9 points.

UPDATE: Tabs for ComRes are here. The question on whether Cameron handled it well didn’t actually ask if Cameron had handled it well or badly, it asked if people agreed with the statement “David Cameron has handled the phone hacking scandal well”. 23% agreed, 49% did not.

The full tables for YouGov’s weekly poll for the Sunday Times are now up here. Natually they are mainly dealing with the phone hacking scandal.

Looking first at the regular trackers, David Cameron’s own approval rating is down to minus 13 (from minus 10 last week), which is his lowest since March. Ed Miliband’s approval rating meanwhile has moved the up other way, up to minus 28 (from minus 34 a week ago). Neither are massive changes, but it has reversed what had been a strong negative trend for Miliband, so good news for him.

Moving onto the questions about the phone hacking and views of the press, only 9% of people now think tabloid newspapers’ reporting is fair and accurate, with 71% believing it is not. 78% agree with the statement that “The tabloid press is out of control”.

While 69% agree that it is only a small minority of journalists who are tarnishing the reputation of others, the vast majority (78%) think that the same practices probably went on in other tabloid newspapers too. Only 8% think it was confined to the News of the World alone. People are more non-committal on the broadsheets – 35% think they are generally fair and accurate, 33% do not, 32% are unsure. Broadsheet readers are rather more trusting of broadsheets (59% think they are fair and accurate, 22% disagree), but even people who read tabloids don’t trust them much – 16% of tabloid readers think their reporting is fair and accurate, 60% do not.

Turning to attitudes about using underhand or illegal actions in order to uncover stories, the broad picture seems to be that the public consider such actions unacceptable whatever the story. People disagree with the statement that underhanded tactics are legitimate if they expose wrongdoing are in the public interest by 54% to 37%, and agree that it is never acceptable for journalists to break the law no matter how important the story by 73% to 19%. On the specific allegations of paying police officers for information, only 2% of people thought this was generally acceptable, 92% thought it was not. Even in scenarios such as exposing political corruption only 12% thought paying police officers would be a legitimate thing to do, with 72% thinking it unacceptable in all the circumstances YouGov asked about.

Unsurprisingly there is overwhelming support (86%) for a public inquiry into the allegations of phone hacking, with opinion broadly divided over whether it should begin as soon as possible (48%) or wait for the police investigation to finish (44%). Only 6% of people think the original police investigation was adequate.

On the future of press regulation, 61% support the establishment of a formal authority to regulate newspapers, compared to 25% who think the press should continue to regulate themselves through the PCC.

Turning to issues specific to News International, 56% thought the closure of the News of the World was the right decision, 26% think it was wrong. However, only 6% think it will draw a line under the issue. Amongst people who identified themselves as News of the World readers, 35% think it was the right decision, 53% do not.

Finally, on the BSkyB takeover only 9% of people thought it should be allowed, 70% disagreed, 21% were unsure. Only 24% agreed that it should be decided on purely competition grounds, 54% thought the issue of phone hacking should be taken into account when making the decision.

Given this is a fast moving story, timing is important – the survey went out Thursday to Friday. All responds were after the News of the World closure, but obviously before much of the wider media reaction too it, with the great majority of responses prior to David Cameron’s press conference the day afterwards or the arrest of Andy Coulson. There doesn’t seem to be any polling from other companies on the topic yet, but Populus’s monthly poll for the Times would normally have gone into the field over the weekend, so we may get that tomorrow night.


This week’s YouGov/Sunday Times poll has topline figures of CON 35%, LAB 44%, LDEM 8%. A nine point lead is the biggest Labour lead in a YouGov poll since April (and follows two 8 point leads in the week, so is probably more than just margin of error). It suggests that the News of the World sage may indeed be damaging Conservative support.

I’ll do a much bigger update tomorrow when the full YouGov tables are available. I thought it likely we’d see other polls in the Sunday papers with questions on News International – but so far I haven’t spotted any other Sunday polls.

Channel 5 news has a ComRes online poll tonight – just the one question asking if people thought Rebekah Brooks should remain in her job at News Corporation (sic*), be sacked or resign. 39% think she should be sacked, 36% think she should resign, 16% think she should stay in her current role.

The poll was conducted on Wednesday and Thursday, prior to the announcement that the News of the World was to close.

(*She’s CEO of News International, not News Corporation, but I can’t imagine it made much difference to responses!)

Tonight’s YouGov poll for the Sun has topline figures of CON 35%, LAB 43%, LDEM 9% – so the eight point lead from yesterday is repeated, suggesting there may genuinely have been an increase in the Labour lead since last week.

Meanwhile Channel 4 News this evening had the first up-to-date polling on the phone hacking affair, an online poll by Survation. 72% of respondents said they did not believe that News International execs were unaware of the hacking, compared to 7% who did. Given a list of people and asked who they considered responsible for the hacking, Rebekah Brooks came top on 66%, followed by Glen Mulcaire on 56% and Murdoch himself on 45%.