Ipsos MORI’s monthly political monitor has been released. The topline figures, with changes from their last poll, are CON 48%(+4), LAB 28%(-2), LDEM 17%(nc). It was conducted between the 13th and 15th February.

We’ve seen the Conservatives re-establishing their lead over the past month, but this is the first poll to put them back in the sort of territory we saw last summer when the Conservatives were regularly recording leads of 20 points. If other polls back up these sort of figures then we are heading back into landslide territory, and it’ll be interesting to see if Labour start experiencing the same sort of internal problems they faced last summer. At the moment though, this is just one poll, so let’s wait and see. It is also worth noting that back in the Summer MORI were showing the largest Conservative leads of all the pollsters, so I wouldn’t necessarily expect other companies to show quite such a large gap even if this does signify a further movement to the Tories.

Also notable is the lack of movement in the level of support for the Liberal Democrats. As regular readers will know, in the past few weeks we’ve seen big leaps in Lib Dem support from ICM and ComRes, a smaller increase from Populus, and no increase at all from YouGov and now Ipsos MORI. We still aren’t really much the wiser about what is really happening to Lib Dem support, though it is worth noting that the Lib Dems were already on the up in last month’s MORI poll, so one can look at this as the Lib Dems consolidating an increase they saw in the last couple of months.


167 Responses to “MORI give Conservatives a 20 point lead”

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  1. Colin,

    The BoE detected the systemic risk of over-reliance on short-term wholesale funding as early as 2006, but, since the responsibility had been transferred to the FSA, the BoE could not do anything about it.

    Even if they had wanted to raise interest rates to constrain credit growth – which they would have had to justify in terms of CPI forecasts excluding housing – it is doubtful that it would have had the desired impact, since the imbalance was not driven by the cost of lending but by the availability.

    It is for this reason that the recent drastic cuts have not had the desired effect of increasing new lending. The issue is not the cost but the availability of credit .

    Unfortunately for Brown, this comes back to the fundamental flaw in his tri-partite regulatory system with surveillance of the banks removed from the body most able not only to carry it out, but to take action when needed.

    The more the public learns about how the financial and banking system actually works, the less rosy Brown’s record as Chancellor looks.

  2. “Unfortunately for Brown, this comes back to the fundamental flaw in his tri-partite regulatory system with surveillance of the banks removed from the body most able not only to carry it out, but to take action when needed.”

    Yes Paul, that’s it.

    I noticed with some surprise that , at his last Press Conference, GB stated that the system prior to the one he introduced was ” self-regulation of banks”.

  3. Paul-I’m not so sure that interest rate hikes would have been the sole-or most obvious- solution for BoE.

    The excessive gearing of Banks could surely have been constrained by appropriate regulation on Reserve/ Capital levels

  4. John TT – Major was active during the last few years of his premiership. There were continued privatisations and the economy continued to do well. Remember the 15 years of good economic times started under Major. Major is also regarded as a good person who was well meaning. The same is not said about Brown.

  5. I think it’s interesting that we show Incoherent vs Ineffective? Does that mean we have just misunderstood the message from Gordon? Is he so far out of reach of us normal quasi humans that we have no joint context from which to lauch his greatness? I do apologise for my crass ineptitude at not being able to understand the message “It’s a global problem”, I thought he just said it’s not my fault, you can’t blame me.
    ———————————————————————-

    Gordon: – Mandy the big boys keep telling me I did bad…

    Mandy: – you stop listening to them diddums, Mandy will spin you a nice bedtime story for you to f*!*!ing tell them…

    ——————————————————————–
    or is it that he is wrong, was wrong and will always be wrong?

    As to David Cameron being ineffective? How would you “Left of center” beings like Dave to improve?

    Seriously as an opposition the conservatives are doing exactly what is needed to assume power at the next election. As much as we say that an election is lost by a government so too can it be thrown away by an opposition. Especially by oppositions who shout too loudly and push too hard.

  6. Colin,

    Precisely, but, under the system in place, interest rates were the only tool available to the BoE, since they did not have the authority to impose the type of controls / restraints that the FSA should have been using – but for various reasons, did not.

    However, on onterest rates, the problem was exacerbated once Brown changed the inflation target from RPI at +/- 2.5% to CPI +/- 2.0%. While the CPI figure may have looked more “prudent” (i.e. anti-inflationary ), in reality it led to much looser policy than needed. Since it excluded housing, the asset price bubble building from excess liquidity was not a factor BoE were allowed to take into account for monetary policy. (Likewise the disregard of various monetary indicators which were Howe and Lawson’s preferred measures).

    You may recall from one of my earlier posts my comments about the problem arising from fiscal policy being completely out of sync with monetary policy. In effect, any tightening of monetary policy was completely undermined by loose fiscal policy.

    This of course was entirely Brown’s responsibility – and there is no way that he can argue that the dreadful state we find our public finances in today is unrelated to his own actions.

    I suspect that the deferral of the budget from March to April may have less to do with the G20 summit and more to do with a Mandelsonian wheeze to call a snap GE on 4 June. That way Darling can announce even more fiscal largesse for the client state, with all the tax rises deferred to an emergency mini-budget after polling day.

  7. PAUL H-J

    An interesting post-thanks.

  8. FAO Cllr Peter Cairns

    See Ivan’s comment on Feb 17th for explanation- hope my reply now makes sense. Sorry didn’t reply sooner, but not able to come on the site until now.

    Cheers.

  9. A question to you experts please?
    A blue candidate polls 42.5% against red 57.5% in County Council election in 59% turnout during 2005 in a straight fight.
    What would be result if fought today with Lib Dems joining in and 40% turnout. (no Generakl election on same day and keeping candidates personalities aside!
    Thanks experts in advance!

  10. @mark m
    interesting.michael howard was brought in to restructure the party,and create order before he promoted david cameron.
    i dont think any politician would say no to being pm,but it was not part of the plan.
    it would have been more difficult to make the progress and jettison dc into the leadership contest or hand over the pm’s job,if he had won.

    just like if labour had won in 1992,(they had the same erm policy)they would have been kicked out after one term because of weak handling of the currency crisis,and been out of power for a long time!
    the same would have happened to the tories now if they had won in 2005.

  11. Borderer,

    My mistake, I misread it as By me not to me.

    Peter.

  12. rodger bannister

    You’re right, this sort situation isn’t good for any incumbent to be winning a GE. It also helps the opposition if they’ve not had a go in government for a while, hence people have forgotten how not very good they were last time.

  13. larry henson

    “A question to you experts please?
    A blue candidate polls 42.5% against red 57.5% in County Council election in 59% turnout during 2005 in a straight fight.”

    The local scene will always vary from the national as Anthony’s latest post shows, however, as a rough estimate;

    Given that the national swing is somewhere between 8 and 10% depending which pollster you believe a blue candidate might expect just over 50% now in a two horse race. Adding the Lib dems as a new entry onto the scene would doubtless take a few votes from both with the bulk coming from the incumbant and, if things remain as they are, more unpopular ‘Red’ candidate.

    So, perhaps (with the caveat that this is a complete guess!) 40% Blue, 35% red, 25% Yellow.

  14. Chris:
    “…If the economy recovers and the recession is not as sever as the gloom merchants predict (anyone stating otherwise is ridiculed) Labour should receive the benefit, even from this right-wing reactionary media…”

    Apart from openly admitting that this recession was not foreseen – despite the global economic signs to the contrary – and then generating gut-wrenching amounts of borrowed debt in a desperate attempt to bluff this nation out of a depression ( ….and if trillions upon trillions of pounds are NOT gut-wrenching, then what is?) what else exactly should Labour receive the benefit for?

    I have a mind of my own, as do most contributors to this website, and therefore we are quite capable of discerning fact from fiction – whether it be dispensed by Brown, Cameron or even Clegg. To suggest that the media’s only function is to fuel and then direct a right-wing frenzy at blameless Gordon is incredibly naive. I support the Conervatives, but I never take the words of the Express, Mail or Sun as gospel. I applaud and respect both honesty and integrity regardless of its political hue. I was genuinely saddened at the death of John Smith who, I feel, could have transformed the Labour party into one that could have even expected to win a fourth or even fifth term. But such leaders are very rare. And in his wake came the Labour circus with Blair as ring-master followed by Brown as Gordo the Clown. I can make up my own judgement about what I see and hear and, in my view, Brown has now been shown to have been a charlatan of a Chancellor and is now an indecisive leader of a party, a disastrous PM of a country and an embarassment to the Labour movement.

  15. Whenever the opinion polls turn against a Labour government some of its core supporters simply cannot resist blaming the media. Do they not realise how insulting this is ? What are they saying? Do they think that flagging Labour voters are so thick and gullible as to be led by the nose by what the Sun editorial says? Behind this lies the old besettng sin of the Left-an inability to understand why the ‘workers’ should want to vote them out of office. I recently overheard a Labour party worker bemoan the lack of class solidarity these days as if the poor old workers were a lumpen mass of gormless individuals whose only role in life was to keep his ‘lot’ in power. What arrogance!

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