Voters turned off politics by lack of choice

VOTERS are increasingly alienated from the British political process and feel they have little influence over it, according to a ComRes poll released today.

More than 60 per cent of those surveyed agreed with the statement “all the major political parties seem to offer pretty much the same policies”, rising to three-quarters among Ukip backers.

“The essence of freedom is choice and this poll shows that as voters we don’t really have any choice between the main political parties. We are condemned as a society to high tax, high spend, high debt and low politics,” said Graham Mitchell of The 4th Agenda, which commissioned the poll.

A large majority of voters said that politicians no longer have any principles, while almost half of the electorate believe their vote does not really count.

Mitchell, brother of former Conservative chief whip Andrew, is positioning The 4th Agenda as a new movement of small business owners who want politicians to have commercial experience and campaign for smaller government and lower taxation.

Andrew Hawkins, chairman of ComRes, said politicians should respond by offering a clearer choice of policies and introducing open primaries for candidate selections.

Meanwhile, a YouGov poll released today shows most Britons believe the recent upswing in the economy has not benefited middle and lower income families.

The research, commissioned by the Labour party, finds 70 per cent of people think only the upper classes are benefiting. Labour is focusing its attacks on the perception of stagnant living standards following a raft of positive economic data.