The bus is leaving for politics as usual... Over 60% want it radically reformed and want it local


We don’t respond much to opinion polling, but this one is particularly interesting, while we’re in the middle of the Brexit vortex - a Com Res survey of over 2000 people a few days ago (commissioned by the Daily Express).

  • Conservative and Labour 2017 voters (and Remain and Leave voters) are in equal agreement that Parliament is not emerging from the Brexit process in a good light (83% Con, 84% Lab).

  • 2016 Remain and Leave voters are also in agreement that the Brexit process has shown the current generation of politicians are not up to the job (80% Remain voters, 83% Leave voters).

  • More than seven in ten adults agree the Brexit process has shown that the British political system needs a complete overhaul (72%), with one in ten disagreeing (10%) and two in ten saying they don’t know (18%).

  • Nearly three quarters support having a written Constitution to provide clear legal rules for how Government Ministers, Parliament and civil servants are required to act (72%) with less than one in ten opposing (7%).

  • More than six in ten (62%) support enabling more decisions to be made at local level rather than by Parliament.

Again, as we’ve been trying to say over these last few years, the urge to “take back control” is rooted in some pretty fundamental individual and social psychology. We’re not surprised that the evident failure of the official political classes to handle the close result of Brexit is opening up a popular appetite for a structural renewal of our democracy.

Many of our good friends - in Make Votes Matter or Compass - are trying to build a consensus for constitutional and electoral reform. We’re focussing on how citizenship is exercised from below, in a felt and imaginative way, through local structures of power that build on the initiative and enterprises already under way in many communities and areas. If 62% believe that this is the level at which decision should be made, rather than the Westminster Parliament, that’s who we’re trying to talk to in 2019.