Owen Smith's campaign to dethrone Jeremy Corbyn has been given a boost after a new opinion poll showed Labour supporters think Theresa May is doing a better job than the leader of the opposition.
The Ipsos MORI survey for The Evening Standard, of more than 1,000 people between 13 and 15 August, also gave the Conservatives an 11 point lead over Labour (45% versus 34%).
The poll, which included more than 300 Labour backing respondents, found May had a net satisfaction of 16%, while the Labour supporters gave Corbyn a -7% net satisfaction rating and Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron a -1% score.
The government, however, were given a -44% net satisfaction rating from Labour backers.
"It's not unusual for a new prime minister to experience a honeymoon with voters, even if it doesn't last, and Theresa May certainly seems to be enjoying one," said Gideon Skinner, head of political research at Ipsos MORI. "What is notable though is the extent of her lead over her opponent Jeremy Corbyn in the way the public rates them in doing their job."
The comments come after Corbyn's re-election campaign launched a rebuttal website. The so called 'Corbyn Facts' site claimed Labour and the Conservatives were neck-and-neck in the opinion polls before Labour's parliamentary party rebelled against the leader.
But an opinion poll average collated by Britain Elects showed a continuous Tory lead since June 2015. Smith, Corbyn's challenger for the Labour leadership, found himself courting controversy today after suggesting the Islamic State (Isis) terror group should be "around the table" for peace talks.
"Ultimately, all solutions to these crises, these sort of international crises, do come about through dialogue," the Pontypridd MP said on the BBC's Victoria Derbyshire programme. "So eventually if we are to try and solve this, all of the actors do need to be involved. At the moment, Isil (Isis/Daesh) are clearly not interested in negotiating.
Smith added: "At some point, for us to resolve this, we will need to get people round the table."