Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have seen their popularity plummet more in U.K. opinion surveys since their royal exit, than Prince Charles during his divorce from Princess Diana.
According to Ipsos Mori data, Prince Charles’ affair and marriage to Camilla Parker Bowles led to a 40-point drop in polling on whether he would make an ideal king.
In 1991, Queen Elizabeth II’s firstborn son and heir enjoyed the support of 82 per cent of Britons. However, this number dropped to 41 percent in 1996.
The figures are similar but less severe than the more recent decline in British popularity of Prince Harry and Meghan.
The Duke of Sussex has dropped 50 points in his U.K. approval rating compared to the 81 percent he enjoyed when his engagement to Meghan Markle was announced in November 2017.
After Harry and Meghan left royal duties, the decline began in January 2020. It continued through their Oprah Winfrey interview, reaching an all time low of 31 percent for the duke in the second quarter of this year
Although Meghan’s decline in popularity in Britain has been less dramatic, she was ranked lower in the first place, it has brought her to a similar spot, now at 32 percent.
These data are based on rolling YouGov surveys, which measure approval ratings of members of the royal household in an ongoing manner. The latest set is based upon representative interviews with 1,489 respondents.
They plunge so far that they surpass the experience Prince Charles had in the wake of his breakup with Princess Diana.
According to Ipsos Mori data, 82 percent of British felt that he would be a good king, compared to 5 per cent who didn’t.
However, Andrew Morton wrote an incendiary book in 1992 with Diana’s secret support. It contained details about his affair with Camilla.
After Diana: Her True Story was published, marital problems that had been stifled over years were finally exposed in British media. Prince Charles admitted to cheating in a 1994 BBC interview.
The following year Princess Diana went on camera to famously tell the world: “Well, there were three of us in this marriage, so it was a bit crowded.”
According to Ipsos Mori data, Prince Charles had fallen by 41 points by February 1996, the year of their divorce.
According to the polling agency, 41% thought he would make a good King, compared with 40% who didn’t.
Prince Charles had risen to 53 percent in July 1997. Then, he dropped again following the death of Princess Diana on August 31, 1997.
In September 2007, 42% of respondents thought he would be a good king, compared with 34% who didn’t.
A second Ipsos Mori poll was conducted in August 1997 before Diana’s passing. It approached the question slightly differently.
When asked if they were satisfied with Charles’ job, 42% answered “yes” while 46% said “no”.
Although the picture seemed grim at the time hasn’t been ableto find polling from an era when his support was as low now as Harry and Meghan’s, which were 31 and 32 percent respectively.