A number of points are worth making about the latest results in respect of the pandemic.
The electorate is significantly more confident in the government’s handling of the pandemic than it has been previously. Confidence in the government's ability to tackle the pandemic has increased to 44% of the public, from 27% the previous month (and 31% and 27% in the two months preceding)
The public supports the recent measures taken by the government to relax restrictions. While more believe that the government 'went too far' (28%) by comparison to 'not far enough' (23%), a healthy 49% felt that the measures were 'right'. Further details n how this has changed since previous polls are available on request.
Support for the most controversial of measures – indoor dining - is two-to-one. While some of those who feel the measures are right are cautious about indoor dining, the lead with this measure remains significant.
This lead narrows in relation to schools. Where 36% believe schools should shut two weeks before Christmas as opposed to 57% who disagree with this.
There’s caution however. There is strong support for imposing restrictions on others. There is a strong majority in favour of quarantining visitors to Ireland in hotels and a stronger majority again in relation to discouraging travel to and from NI. [As featured in the Mail on Sunday]
What is perhaps worrying for the government is that 4/10 don’t believe their friends/family will abide by restrictions. This is prominent among younger people and those living in rented accommodation.
It is also true that most do not believe that Christmas is worth another lockdown. As reported in the Mail on Sunday. This leans in a different direction - the older voters.
Covid remains the issue people are most concerned about going into 2021 in contrast to Brexit and Climate Change.
In relation to mental health there are stark differences in age groups younger voters aged between 18 and 34 and those living in rented accommodation are far more likely to report a disimprovement in their mental health. 64% of those 18-34 do so.
Numbers willing to take the vaccine remain consistently high, remaining at 70% of the public in the latest poll and consistent with other polling firms. The most vulnerable are the most enthusiastic. [As featured in the Mail on Sunday]
The tables are attached. Please note that the margin of error for individual cells in the tables larger than in the poll overall.