Ken Livingstone’s hopes of winning back City Hall suffered a set-back today after a YouGov poll put incumbent Mayor Boris Johnson 7 points ahead.
Asked “If there were an election tomorrow for Mayor of London, how would you vote?”, 48 percent of respondents said they would vote for Johnson while 41% picked Livingstone.
The poll gives the Liberal Democrats, who have yet to pick a candidate, just 2% of votes.
The former Mayor also polled lower than his successor when respondents were asked whether they would prefer than him or Johnson as Mayor – Johnson received the backing of 49% of those answering, 8 points more than his challenger.
Mr Johnson also scored higher than Livingstone on the question of honesty.
When respondents were asked to tick the qualities each candidate had, 24% described Johnson as “honest” while only 17% said this about Livingstone.
However while 37% said they felt Livingstone was “in touch with the concerns of ordinary people”, just 20% thought the same about the Mayor.
In addition, more people said Livingstone “Sticks to what he believes in” (41%) than picked this as one of Johnson’s qualities (32%) and while 13% say Johnson is a natural leader, 19% believe this is true of Livingstone.
Overall the poll will be disappointing news for the Livingstone campaign who are hoping unhappiness at the coalition’s cuts and austerity programme will diminish Johnson’s appeal to voters.