Kantar Public’s latest barometer on British public opinion and voting intentions finds a large proportion of people in Britain think MPs make decisions based on their own interests, and a majority believe MPs should not be allowed to have second jobs.
Britons are concerned about further waves of COVID-19 infections during the winter, and half of Britons think COVID-19 vaccines should be mandatory for all adults.
MPs decision making and second jobs
A large proportion of people think that MPs decision making is largely driven by their own vested interests. Seven in ten Britons (72%) think MPs make decisions to a large extent/to some extent based on what will further their political career. 71% think they make decisions to a large extent/to some extent to benefit their own financial interests.
Just under half of people (47%) think MPs make decisions to a large extent/to some extent based on what they think is right. Only a third of the public (33%) think they make decisions to a large extent/to some extent based on what is beneficial for the public
Over half (55%) of people think MPs should not be allowed to have second jobs. Only 25% think they should be allowed; 20% don’t know.
Article 16 of the Northern Ireland protocol
People in Britain are divided over what the government should do about the rules governing trade between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK. 31% think the government should change the current arrangement to make the rules the same for Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK, even if this means the EU may respond with counter measures.
Meanwhile, 28% think the government should stick with the current arrangement and keep in place the trade agreement already negotiated with the EU. 41% say they do not know what the government should do.
Food, petrol, and medicine shortages
Thinking about the upcoming months, Britons remain concerned about potential shortages. 63% are very/fairly concerned about shortages of fresh food in the coming months (+3 vs October 2021), while 33% are not very/not at all concerned (-3).
More than half (53%) of Britons are very/fairly concerned about shortages of petrol or diesel over the next few months (-1). 41% are not very/not at all concerned (+1).
Over half (56%,+4) are very/fairly concerned about there being shortages of medicine over the next few months. 39% are not very/not at all concerned (-2).
Attitudes towards COVID-19 and actions to tackle the pandemic
Concern around rising COVID-19 cases this winter, and dissatisfaction with the government’s handling of the pandemic, is increasing:
- 74% (+4) are very/fairly concerned that there will be further waves of COVID-19 infections through the winter.
- 50% (+5) think that vaccines should be compulsory for all adults. 37% (-8) think that adults should be allowed to choose.
- Seven in ten people (70%, -6) say they are very/somewhat satisfied with the vaccine rollout organised by the government and health authorities. 21% are not very/not at all satisfied with the vaccine rollout (+4).
- 42% of people think that the government is placing too much emphasis on protecting the country’s economy, and not enough on protecting people’s health (+5). This is the highest figure since September 2020. 23% think it has got the balance about right (-1).
- 40% think the government has handled the pandemic very/fairly well (-2) and 51% think very/fairly poorly (nc).
Views around climate change
The public are critical of action taken at the COP26 summit and of global co-operation:
- 47% of Britons think that the COP26 summit was not very/not at all successful at agreeing a deal that would successfully tackle climate change. One third (31%) thought the summit was very/somewhat successful and 22% do not know whether the summit was successful or not.
- 46% of people think that the measures agreed at the COP26 summit do not go far enough to tackle climate change, while only 10% think they do go far enough, and 6% think they go too far. 37% do not know enough about the agreed measures to provide a view.
- 56% (+2) of Britons rate global cooperation between countries to tackle climate change as very poor/poor, while only 27% (-2) would rate it as very good/good.
- 63% (+5 vs September 2021 ) of people say that they would be willing to make a lot of changes/some changes to how they live and work to help reduce the effects of climate change. One fifth (20%, +1) would be willing to make only a few changes, and 7% (-5) would not be willing to make any changes.
Household-level economic impacts
When asked about their household situation, a record number of households say they are falling behind with some or all of their bills: 29% (+6) of people say they are behind with some or all of their household bills, the highest figure we have recorded since this question was introduced in September 2021. 64% (-6) are up to date with their bills.
Four in ten Britons (41%) report that they are finding it harder to meet their monthly household budget than a year ago (+2). 49% are finding it about the same (no change).
Four in ten (41%) report that their household income has fallen behind the cost of living over the last few months (-2). 44% report that their household income has kept up with the cost of living (-4), and 14% report that their income has gone up by more than the cost of living (+5).
Thinking about the year ahead, four in ten (45%,+2) think their household income will fall behind the cost of living. 42% think their household income will keep up with the cost of living (-5), and 13% think it will go up by more than the cost of living (+3).
60% (-2) of Britons are very/fairly concerned about not being able to afford to keep their home warm enough this winter; 33% (+1) are not very/not at all concerned. Of those people in employment, 28% say their job feels less safe than 12 months ago (+5).
- Con 39% (no change vs October 2021)
- Lab 36% (+2)
- Lib Dem 10% (+2)
- Green 5% (-3)
- SNP 4% (-1)
- Reform UK (formerly Brexit Party) 2% (nc)
- UKIP 2% (+1)
- Plaid Cymru 1% (nc)
- Other 1% (nc)
The survey data and further details on the methodological approach of the Britain Barometer can be found here.
A total of 1,119 interviews were conducted online among adults living in Great Britain between 18 and 22 November 2021. All interviews were conducted online using the Kantar Research Express. The Kantar online access panel was the main sample source.
The data was weighted to match population totals for age, gender, 2019 General Election voting patterns, 2016 EU referendum voting patterns, education, region, and likelihood to vote in the next General Election. Any use of this research must cite Kantar Public as the source.