This morning’s Times has a new YouGov poll with topline figures of CON 28%(-4), LAB 32%(+1), LDEM 11%(-1), BREXIT 8%(+3), UKIP 6%(-1), GRN 5%(+1), Change 3% (new). Fieldwork was Wednesday and Thursday and changes are since the start of April. This is the first standard YouGov poll that’s included Change UK – now they are in the process of registering as a political party I expect we’ll start to see them included in most polls.

The Conservative score of 28% is the first time YouGov have shown them dropping below 30% since 2013. While one can never be certain about what has caused changes in voting intention, it is hard to avoid the obvious conclusion that they are shedding support to more unambiguously pro-Brexit parties like UKIP and the Brexit party.

As ever, one should be cautious about reading too much into any single poll, but this is pretty much in line with other recent polling. A BMG poll last week put Labour 2 points ahead and the Conservatives down at 29%, a Survation poll this week (unusually of England & Wales only) produced a four point Labour lead. Kantar’s latest poll produced a three point Labour lead (and a startling 9 point drop in Tory support, though I suspect that was at least partially a reversion to the mean after an usually high Tory lead in their previous poll). Across the board Conservative support seems to be falling away.

The YouGov poll also included voting intention for the European elections. Initial headline figures there are CON 16%, LAB 24%, LDEM 8%, BREXIT 15%, UKIP 14%, GRN 8%, Change 7%.

I should add some caveats here. It is, obviously, very early – the European elections have only just been announced and people are unlikely to have put much if any thought towards who they will support. This early measure however suggests that the Conservatives will, as widely predicted, suffer badly. As yet they are narrowly in second place, but I would by no means assume that will hold (not least, the Brexit party will still be largely unknown and many respondents will be unaware that they are now the party of Nigel Farage, rather than UKIP, and I’d expect them to gain support as they gain publicity. Equally, it remains to be seen what impact there is on Change UK support once they officially launch as a party.

Full tabs for both questions are here.


821 Responses to “YouGov voting intention for Westminster & the European elections”

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  1. @Edge of Reason

    “If you’re looking for West London digs there’s a place where Ho Chi Minh used to wash the dishes that might appeal…”

    Thanks for the tip and, yes, I was aware he’d spent a short time in London when he travelled around the world in his youth. I visited Hanoi a few years ago and learnt that little factoid when I was there. I queued for half an hour to walk past his embalmed body in the Mausoleum and, as Comrade Corbyn instructed me to do so, I paid homage to him on behalf oif the British Labour Movement. I shall be visiting Pyongyang soon on a similar mission for Jezza, although I gather that Kim II-Sung’s Mausoleum isn’t quite as accessible. As for Ho Chi Minh’s embalmed body, it was in remarkably good shape, even if his features were understandably a little gaunt and grey. I gather he goes to Moscow for a Spring clean every now and again and, I have to say, he looks well on it. Certainly more vigour in evidence than when watching, let’s say, Chris Grayling or Phil Hammond!

    :-),

  2. LASZLO

    @”I think you misunderstood that piece on the extra bone in the knee.”

    Alec has understood it correctly.

    This paper , from 2002 concludes that “mechanical factors play a role in the epigenetic regulation of sesamoid bone development. ”

    https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/%28SICI%291097-0185%2819991015%29257%3A5%3C174%3A%3AAID-AR6%3E3.0.CO%3B2-O

    Alec quotes an attempt to quantify the rate of response in modern humans .

  3. six Lab leads over the Tories in a row including two of those dodgy pro-Con Yougov ones.

    It doesn’t look like they’ve made a lot of headway in Scotland – in fact the may not have gained many votes anywhere, it’s just that the Tories are more split.

    What will happen if Lab go full pro-referendum?

  4. @nickp

    Brexit is almost as big a problem for Labour.

    If Labour agree a deal with the Government to agree a Brexit including Customs Union agreement with the EU, plus close alignment to EU Single market, then a large percentage of Labour voters won’t be happy. Leave supporting Labour voters will say it is not real Brexit and Remain supporting Labour voters will be annoyed about Labour doing a deal with a Tory Government on a Brexit deal they don’t agree with either.

    Brexit is bad for UK politics in general, because it is not easily solveable, as it is a fundamental question about the UK’s position in the world. The easy part was the withdrawal deal, with the future relationship with the EU and trade deals with non EU countries being a lot more difficult.

    A referendum is more likely than a General election. But any second referendum must offer a much clearer choice between a fully explained leave option and remaining in the EU.

  5. NICKP

    “What will happen if Lab go full pro-referendum?”

    It will make the Euro election very interesting. It will be, in effect, a quasi referendum in itself. Remain Labour in England & Wales + Remain SNP in Scotland v. Leave Brexit Party.

  6. @ Crossbat11

    Swansea were lucky it was only five they scored:) I remember after 5 minutes Nakhi Wells turned their Korean (or Japanese) defender and was rugby tackled 30 metres out preventing him going clean through on goal with no other defenders anywhere close. Straight Red? No, just a yellow and then an apology from the ref later for his mistake. Key moments in games.

    We’re going to see Billy Joel at Wembley in June and have been looking at places a bit further north on the Metropolitan line, out of town but with easy access. Quite a bit of choice.

  7. Labour will not go full referendum before the EU poll as no need to. They will wait to see what the Council Elections and EU poll suggest.

    People are voting for MEPs not for what their Westminster Parties positions are is how Labour will avoid jumping. In the meantime they will stretch out the talks with HMG as much as possible.

  8. NICKP

    What will happen if Lab go full pro-referendum?

    Not a lot. The You Gov/People’s Vote EP poll:

    https://d25d2506sfb94s.cloudfront.net/cumulus_uploads/document/vdqicng3bz/PeoplesVote_190416_EUElections_w.pdf#page=3

    asked Imagine that, at the European Parliament elections, the Conservatives say they support going ahead with Brexit on the terms of the deal negotiated by the government. Labour, the Liberal Democrats, the Greens, [PCY/SNP if in Wales/Scotland] and Change UK say they support a public vote on whether or not to go ahead with Brexit. UKIP and the Brexit Party say they support leaving without any deal.
    How would you then vote in the European Parliament elections?
    and got the response:

    Con 15% (-)

    Lab 23% (+1)

    Lib Dem 10% (+1)

    SNP/PC 4% (-)

    Green 8% (-2)

    UKIP 7% (-)

    Brexit 26% (+1)

    ChUK-TIG 5% (-1)

    Other 1% (-)

    where () was the EP VI asked immediately before without the extra referendum hypothetical. It’s not exactly earth-shaking movement is it? Especially when you consider there’s a bit of a Mrs Doyle Effect with combined non-voters (WNV/DK/Ref) dropping from 38% to 30%, but obviously being distributed pretty evenly.

  9. Old Nat @ 11.03 pm last night

    You ask my view on how many voters are likely to support Nigel Farage and the Brexit Party in NE Scotland in the EU election.

    I simply cannot give you an informed opinion. We don`t know anyone here who has ever shown approval of NF, and I haven`t seen any letters in local papers supporting him.

    But we did have a 45% Leave vote in the referendum in Aberdeenshire that I reckon was equally split between SCON and SNP voters, and some of these Tories could turn to NF. Certainly there have been angry letters in the papers complaining about May and the “ignoring of democracy” despite the Scotland result in 2016. The SNP Leave voters were probably mainly from the North fishing communities in Fraserburgh and Peterhead, and hardly any of them will vote for NF.

    Meantime I predict that many Leave voters here will not vote in European Election, but Remain supporters will vote strongly but spread across Greens, SLAB, SLDem and SNP. My hunch for the 6 seats is 3 SNP, 1 SLAB, 1 SCON and ??? maybe Green or SLDem.

  10. @R Huckle

    “A referendum is more likely than a General election. But any second referendum must offer a much clearer choice between a fully explained leave option and remaining in the EU.”

    We can be assured that, unless Theresa May arranges a military coup, there will be an election sometime by 2022.

    I’m afraid there isn’t a fully explainable leave option that the leave side will agree upon. Hence why any referendum should be only on accepting or rejecting the deal. If we reject the deal, there can be a further referendum to Leave on WTO compliant terms or Remain.

    Anyway, it’s Easter and I’m glad the Brexit froth has receded.

  11. Colin

    re your brief response, citing Lyra McKee’s death

    I’m torn as to which scenario explains your comment

    1. You hadn’t read the report that you cite

    2. You believe that NI has a disproportionately large number of deranged individuals who set out to shoot random individuals

    3. You were just trying to be a smart-ar3e

  12. @OldNat

    “I’m torn as to which scenario explains your comment

    1. You hadn’t read the report that you cite

    2. You believe that NI has a disproportionately large number of deranged individuals who set out to shoot random individuals

    3. You were just trying to be a smart-ar3e”

    None of these scenarios are mutually exclusive. It’s quite possible that all three may apply!

    :-)

  13. RP

    Thanks for the info on David Martin. It’s now looking possible that 5 of the 6 Scots MEPs will be very pro-EU (and at least sympathetic to Scotland being a member in its own right).

    I see the top Tory candidate in Scotland is Baroness Nosheena Mobarik.

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-47991689

    She is strongly pro-UK, and was reported as being keen to “do her bit to ensure our departure from the European Union is handled as smoothly as possible”.

    Very much a party loyalist, she became an MEP in a somewhat controversial swap with elected Tory MEP Ian Duncan, who was made a Lord to become a minister in the “UK Government in Scotland” (once termed the Scotland Office). She was bounced into the MEP post in 2017, over the head of the 2nd placed Tory on the 2014 list, and has never been elected to any legislative position.

    Will that make a difference? Who knows? But I’d expect Farage’s Brexit Party to appeal to the strong nativist strand in the Tory electorate and use that against voting Con in May.

    Of course, they won’t actually say that she is “an unelected Pakistani woman imposed on the people by the Tory Party”, but the message is likely to be clear to all possible Brexit voters.

    I expect that the battle for the votes of that small section of the Scottish electorate to be very nasty.

  14. CB11

    True!

  15. OLDNAT

    I was making assumptions about the word you used for shooting someone-“othering”.

    Having read today’s reports & heard the news casts-two interviews with Irish journalists particularly , the organisation involved seems clearly identified. Its objectives are known. Its methods apparent in the use of two teenagers to do the shooting. Youngsters too young to remember the GFA.

    So -when you have a moment you can tell me if all of this is what you meant by “othering”.

  16. Colin

    “I was making assumptions about the word you used for shooting someone-“othering”.”

    OK. You were making assumptions – based on nothing I said, but presumably based on whatever your perceptions of violence in a community are. That’s never very sensible.

    Since, on a number of issues, you can be rational, let me explain why you are very, very wrong in your assumptions.

    The discussion was on why there is a high level of violence in NI (and, by extension, other polities).

    I suggested that a key component in all such situations was the creation, promulgation, and acceptance of the idea that some people are “us” and anyone who is different from that concept are “others”.

    As long as the “others” aren’t viewed as hostile and existentially threating, that doesn’t necessarily create problems.

    Sometimes, of course, the actions of others are existentially threatening, and violent reaction is adopted as a result, if acceptable alternative solutions don’t seem to be available.

    There’s nothing unusual in that. The British Empire reacted with violent repression to those in India, Africa who dared to challenge their dominance.

    The Germans responded in a similar way to the Resistance in France, and (as my Dad reported when he was temporarily attached to a Free French unit in Algeria) as the French did to the Algerians, and the Algerians did to the French.

    There are so many examples of existential conflicts, that I’m surprised that you seem incapable of putting NI into context. Indeed, English history is riddled with such examples, and they were (not infrequently) settled through violence.

  17. Alec asked earlier for my views on heather burning on moorlands.

    In general I approve, and I am happy with the Muirburn Code:

    https://www.nature.scot/sites/default/files/2017-11/Guidance%20-%20Management%20of%20Moorland%20-%20Muirburn%20Code.pdf

    I accept that burning causes emissions, and also the ash on newly-burnt moors washes downstream, but the nutrient losses are more than compensated by the nutrients in subsequent rainfall, that is unless the burning cycle is unusually short.

    But without managed burning, heather moorland is liable to suffer wildfires, and these may well cause serious damage especially if peat catches fire – such fires may take weeks to put out even with aerial water bombardment. Dry weather seems always to bring these spontaneous fires, plus a few deliberately set by maniacs. Even in the last few days I have read/heard reports of five serious moorland fires from Cheshire up to Sutherland, and the last day for managed burning was April 15th.

    For grouse management, heather burning is virtually essential, to provide nutritious young shoots for the grouse. Maybe we researchers were once too ready to say that well-managed moorland with lots of small fires giving short heather, but patches of tall heather alongside to give cover to the birds, would ensure plenty of birds to shoot.

    Now we know that other factors such as build-ups of ticks can much affect grouse stocks. And the ticks are carried by mountain hares, causing some estates to sadly have intensive hare shoots.

    Some critics of heather burning over-estimate its frequency. In most of Scotland burning takes place on about a 20-year cycle, whereas in Northern England with higher temperatures and on drier ground, the heather grows faster, and can be ready for burning 12 years after the previous fire.

    A big problem is attempting to do muirburn with an insufficient labour force to cope with breakaways. When this happens on careless or unscrupulous estates, the whole industry gets blamed. Hence the need for a code and much care.

  18. OLDNAT

    OK -lets try this another way.

    Sam asked you :-
    ““Why do people turn to violence in NI? ”

    You replied
    ” “othering” has to be the key component. Without that, who is there to be violent against?”

    I suggested that killing a young journalist was not “othering”-but wasn’t sure of your definition. .

    Now you explain to me that “othering”” can lead to violence if :-

    “the actions of others are existentially threatening, and violent reaction is adopted as a result, if acceptable alternative solutions don’t seem to be available.”

    What “acceptable alternative solutions” was the young journalist not making available?

    Not writing about The New IRA perhaps,?

    From the news we learn that every political party in NI,including SF, and the Derry community at large is at one in condemning this killing.
    Two suspects-teenagers-have been apprehended.

    But -to follow your logic-this tiny band of Republican thugs intent on destroying the Peace Process , by the simple act of “othering” the whole community in Londonderry, and an investigative journalist in particular is justified in their murderous act because the majority ( the others !) have refused to provide “acceptable alternative solutions” to…………..leaving this murderous minority in peace to kill indiscriminately.

    Well I have always thought that “othering” is a silly word-your further explanation of it is very disturbing.

  19. OLDNAT

    This report is relevant to our exchange:-

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-47997068

    A heartwarming account which seems to indicate that this long suffering community has had enough of the men of violence & their murderous “othering”-and have decided that it will be the “us”.

  20. Colin,

    Good to see but perhaps more just a desire not to go back to “how bad it was” as opposed to a real change in attitudes.

    Unfortunately , as much as I would want it to be otherwise, I still see this as a deeply divided community that would prefer to maintain the current “Mexican Standoff!” than start shooting again.

    Progress yes, but not yet a breakthrough.

    Still there is hope!

    Peter.

  21. @ Oldnat @ Colin

    I don’t normally butt in to others conversations but on this occasion I thought it might prove emollient.
    Colin I understand you are expressing revulsion at the brutal and senseless loss of this young woman’s life and laying the blame where it properly lies.
    Oldnat I understand you to be talking about a sociological aspect of the development of violence in the context of a previous conversation about a propensity to violence in the Irish. You, as I understand it, are saying be wary of tropes which ascribe a particular characteristic to a particular community as this itself may allow an insular defensive sentiment to develop into an aggressive defensive response within that community.
    On that basis I do not understand Oldnat to be condoning this violent act or any other but simply saying that particular ways of describing such acts can result in the escalation and exacerbation of violence in both communities (remember the solely sectarian killings during the troubles).
    If I am right the argument between you is at cross purposes as both of you are anti violence but Colin you are considering this particular crime and Oldnat you are looking at broader causes of escalation.
    There is enough significant conflict on this site at the moment with without it becoming unnecessarily extended.

    I feel a little justified in entering this debate as my wife is a Northern Irish Catholic born in 1968 raised through the troubles, burned out of her home at 17, and although vicariously, I have witnessed and experienced the raw emotions this engenders. My wife is clever, logical and empathetic, until that is any issue involving the troubles is discussed when her reaction is raw visceral emotion where any forgiveness is difficult and her genuine fear of Unionism is apparent. The most she is able to say is that it was terrible that young men and women on both sides were used as cannon fodder by those who should have been sorting things out rather than making them worse.
    Where I believe Oldnat is wrong is that it will take more than one generation to root out this visceral “othering”, but where I agree is that it needs removing.
    Where I agree with Colin is that the apparent use of these two teenagers by dissident Republicans does not excuse the crime they have committed but should also rebound (in the sense of a greater guilt and consequent punishment) on those who are firstly encouraging this feeling of “othering” in a younger generation and using it to promote their political objectives.

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