Labour voters know less about politics than Conservatives

Labour voters at Glastonbury (Getty Images)

People who vote Labour know less about politics on average than their Conservative counterparts, a poll has found.

The survey tested participants’ political knowledge by asking them whether eight statements about politics were true or false.

Statements included ‘the unemployment rate in the UK is currently less than 5%’; ‘the chancellor of the Exchequer is responsible for setting interest rates in the UK’ and ‘the minimum voting age for UK general elections is now 16 years of age’.

The number of correctly answered questions was then used to define the level of a person’s political knowledge.

How does a person’s level of political knowledge affect the way they vote?

60% of those whose political knowledge fell much below average knowledge voted for Labour, while 60% of those with much above average voted for the Conservative Party.

More than half of those with below average political knowledge voted for Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour party.

The same survey found that people who regularly searched the internet for news and information about the 2017 General Election were much more likely to vote Labour.

Use of the internet to gather information was strongly linked to political allegiance

People who rarely accessed the internet to gather information tended to be supporters of Theresa May and her party.

Overall the survey found that 16% of people used the internet ‘a great deal’ to find news and information about the election, 23% used it ‘a fair amount’, 23% used it ‘not very much’ and 38%  did so ‘not at all’ or didn’t know.

61% of the people who claimed to have used the internet a great deal opted for the Labour party, and 56% of those who didn’t use the internet at all voted Tory.

Internet use also had a marked effect on people’s attitudes towards the two main party leaders.

Respondents were asked to score Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn with a mark out of ten, with 0 meaning ‘really dislike’ and 10 meaning ‘really like’.

Those who used the internet a great deal awarded Mr Corbyn a score of 6.4, whereas those who used it not at all scored him just 3.4.

For Mrs May the opposite pattern emerged – people who used the internet a great deal awarded her a dismal 2.9, whereas those who did not go online at all gave her a considering more impressive 5.3.