What Lib Dem members think of George Osborne’s autumn statement (and the two measures they oppose)

by Stephen Tall on December 14, 2011

Lib Dem Voice has polled our members-only forum to discover what Lib Dem members think of various political issues, the Coalition, and the performance of key party figures. Some 550 party members responded, and we’re currently publishing the full results.

Lib Dem members give thumbs-up (mostly) to Osborne’s autumn statement

Two weeks ago, the Chancellor George Osborne updated MPs on the state of the economy and the government’s future plans in his Autumn Statement as the Office for Budget Responsibility published its latest growth and borrowing forecasts.

LDV asked: Do you support or oppose the following policies announced by the Chancellor?
[NB: results below are arranged in order of net popularity]

Raising the levy on bank profits

    Strongly support 64%
    Support 28%
    No view 4%
    Oppose 3%
    Strongly oppose 1%
    Net support: +88%

Reducing the increases in rail fares to 1% above inflation, rather than 3%

    Strongly support 43%
    Support 45%
    No view 7%
    Oppose 4%
    Strongly oppose 1%
    Net support: +83%

Spending £1bn on subsidising work placements for young unemployed people

    Strongly support 46%
    Support 40%
    No view 7%
    Oppose 5%
    Strongly oppose 2%
    Net support: +79%

Increasing the state pension age to 67 by 2026

    Strongly support 41%
    Support 44%
    No view 5%
    Oppose 7%
    Strongly oppose 3%
    Net support: +75%

Spending money on 35 new road and rail improvement schemes

    Strongly support 33%
    Support 50%
    No view 9%
    Oppose 6%
    Strongly oppose 2%
    Net support: +75%

Increasing out-of-work benefits in line with inflation

    Strongly support 30%
    Support 46%
    No view 11%
    Oppose 11%
    Strongly oppose 3%
    Net support: +62%

Following a two year pay freeze, limiting pay rises for public sector workers to 1% for two more years

    Strongly support 18%
    Support 44%
    No view 8%
    Oppose 23%
    Strongly oppose 8%
    Net support: +31%

Cancelling the planned 3p rise in fuel duty in January

    Strongly support 22%
    Support 26%
    No view 14%
    Oppose 25%
    Strongly oppose 12%
    Net support: +11%

Giving a £50 rebate on water bills to people living in the South-West

    Strongly support 8%
    Support 15%
    No view 47%
    Oppose 20%
    Strongly oppose 9%
    Net support: -6%

Increasing the discount for people buying their council house to 50%

    Strongly support 4%
    Support 11%
    No view 19%
    Oppose 34%
    Strongly oppose 33%
    Net support: -52%

Overall there was strong support among our sample of Lib Dem members for most of the key measures in the Chancellor’s autumn statement. Two policies which did not find favour were (1) the £50 water bill rebate for those living in the south-west, probably because the relief is targeted to a region but not according to income/wealth (and besides almost half expressed no view on it); and (2) increasing the discount for people buying their council house, an overwhelmingly unpopular idea among Lib Dems at a time of high and increasing shortages of social housing.

  • Over 1,200 Lib Dem paid-up party members are registered with LibDemVoice.org. Some 560 responded to the latest survey, which was conducted between 9th and 13th December.
  • Please note: we make no claims that the survey is fully representative of the Lib Dem membership as a whole. However, LibDemVoice.org’s surveys are the largest independent samples of the views of Lib Dem members across the country, and have in the past accurately predicted the winners of the contest for Party President, and the result of the conference decision to approve the Coalition agreement.
  • The full archive of our members’ surveys can be viewed at www.libdemvoice.org/category/ldv-members-poll