Rishi Sunak's early departure from this month's D-Day commemorations is the worst gaffe of the general election campaign so far, according to a new poll.

A More In Common survey showed more than 80 per cent of voters were aware of the fierce row over the PM's skipping of a major international event in Normandy.

More than 70 per cent thought the incident reflected badly on the Conservative Party, the research found.

The Tories have also suffered the second-worst gaffe of the election campaign, according to the survey, with more than 70 per cent aware of 'gamblegate'.

As well as a high level of awareness among voters, a similar proportion thought the scandal over alleged betting on the election date by senior Tories reflected badly.

The worst gaffe to have afflicted Labour was shown to be the meltdown over whether veteran MP Diane Abott would be allowed to stand as a party candidate.

Around two-thirds of voters were aware of the factional row between Sir Keir Starmer and Labour's left-wing, while more than half thought it reflected badly on the party.

Meanwhile, more than half of voters were aware of Liberal Democrat leader Sir Ed Davey's travails on a paddleboard.

But little more than one-fifth thought the former Cabinet minister failing to stay upright on Lake Windermere reflected badly on his party.

The More In Common polling - carried out between 21 to 23 June - also suggested other gaffes with a high level of public awareness included Mr Sunak saying he went without Sky TV as a child, as well as the PM's announcement of the election date in the pouring rain in Downing Street. 

Luke Tryl, UK director of More In Common, said: 'Two moments stand out with clear cut through and over 70 per cent saying they reflect badly: D-Day & the gambling scandal.

'The biggest Labour misstep appears to have been their handling of Diane Abbott's suspension and candidacy earlier in the campaign.

'Meanwhile Ed Davey's paddle board incident (which we included as a control) was something many were aware of but didn't really think badly of.

'What I think it demonstrates though is just how gambling/D-Day are unique in the extent to which they have had the potential to shape the course of the campaign and why they have caused real damage to the Conservatives.

'No other events come close.'

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2024-06-24T16:44:53Z dg43tfdfdgfd