After the wild moves in Ipsos MORI’s last two polls, which showed the Tory lead tightening to 6 points and then spiking back to 17, we’ve almost the mirror image from ComRes. Their last poll showed a 17 point, and tomorrow they have a new poll in the Independent that shows a sharp reduction. The topline figures, with changes from their poll just over a week ago, are CON 38%(-3), LAB 29%(+5), LDEM 19%(-2).

Whereas the big movements with MORI were down to the lack of political weighting allowing a sample with a very perculiar amount of 2005 Labour voters, with ComRes my guess it is the rather more mundane explanation of a rogue poll – in hindsight the 17 point Tory lead in their last poll looks wholly anomolous, the only other pollster showing such a low Labour share of the vote was Angus Reid, who seem to consistently show a lower level of Labour support for methodological reasons. If we put ComRes’s previous poll to one side and look at the one prior to that, the shifts are far smaller, with the Conservatives up, Labour up 2 and the Lib Dems down 1 – no significant movement in itself, but chiming with the recent slight strengthening for Labour.

So, as we head to the end of the year (YouGov/Telegraph is still outstanding in theory, but I’m not sure when it will arrive), we still have quite a broad range of polling figures, with leads between 9 and 17 points – from a hung Parliament to a Tory landslide. The Conservatives are in the range 38%-43%, but of the 12 polls in December 9 have put them at 40% or 41% – that’s a noticable difference from November when 7 out of 10 polls had them below 40%. Lib Dem support ranges between 16% and 21%, but mostly between 18% and 20%. The real variation is in the level of support pollsters are finding in Labour’s support, from 23% to 31%. However, the lower figures there are either AngusReid or that single ComRes that appears to have been a rogue, and other figures are in the tighter range of 26% to 31%. That leaves us with an average lead of around 11 points or so – on a UNS right on the cusp of a hung Parliament, though in practice it would probably result in a Conservative majority.

(As an aside, if you are following the polls in the glorious rumourmill of Twitter then the 3 point Tory lead in MORI on Sunday has been followed by CON 40%, LAB 31% in this poll. Boy, are polls in the general election are going to be fun there!)

164 Responses to “New ComRes poll shows 38/29/19”

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  1. “The cons won by a majority of 21 or so in 1992 and only had 7% lead and now boundarys have changed to favour the tories so surely they should get about a 50 seat majority if they had a 9% lead”

    You have it wrong. The boundaries have changed in such a way that they’ll need even more support to gain seats.

    It’s why Cameron wants to cut the number of MPs by 35. I’d imagine the 35 unlucky people would just be ditched to favour the tory party in future elections.

    I think a 9 point poll lead would actually be a majority of about 5 these days. Maybe even hung.

    I think they’d need at least 11-12 to even be safe of getting a majority.

    If your talking a good majority (50+) I’d say they’d maybe even need 15+ to be safe.

    You have to remember that these polls could well be 5 points off! They are done with a margin of error

  2. “So labour voters move but tory voters dont what a load of rubbish your telling Me that you know where people move ? The only way you could be right is if the government has planted voters In places”

    It’s not that at all. You are talking about all types of social progression.

    Economic immigration hitting areas like Newcastle in the 1970s isn’t going to change their voting habits. It will strengthen it.

    Areas around London, Midlands, South coast these days are a lot more multi cultural now than they were in the tories prime.

    Not to get too partisan, but immigration, and multi culturism hurts the tories in regards to power.

    The more multi cultural, multi religion, the country gets, the harder the tories will find it to win elections.

    It’s why the tories want a tougher stance on it. And Labour generally follow the European model, and promote open border economic immigration.

    The tory strongholds are generally middle class, white areas. When these areas (especially around London) start changing from that, they struggle to keep them.

    Take London as an example. I’d suggest the tories will struggle greatly in the capital, no matter how bad Labour are.

    I may be wrong, but they used to dominate London until the 1980s

  3. “I think many lib dems will vote conservative to get rid of labour if Im right it could produce large swings the lib dems vote is down who is taking there vote?”

    You are way way way off. There has been next to no Lib Dem to Tory swing in the polls.

    The swing has been Lib Dem to Labour. Labour have benefited greatly from Lib Dem support in polls over the last year.

    The tories are doing well, but there main problem (as in getting a decent majority) has come from their inability to attract Lib Dem and core Labour vote.

    Blair won a landslide as he did both. He destroyed the tories core support. As well as attracting Lib Dems in huge numbers.

  4. “The next election hinges less on the Tories and more on the extent to which Brown ‘heals the deal’ with the Labour electorate. The variations in the Labour polling seem consistent with an analysis that suggests that a proportion (perhaps 20%) of Blair-Labour voters really are swinging from Labour to don’t know depending upon current news agend”

    Cameron’s problem is the fact that 10-15% of Labour support is still in the “undecided” category. They haven’t made the move yet.

    The recent poll trends could just be showing them heading back.

    Not that Brown has won them back, but Cameron hasn’t done enough at the other end.

    Labour’s success in the election will be decided on how their core support votes.

    Said it many many times on here. Don’t underestimate how hard it is for Labour voters to vote tory.

    There is still a heck of a lot of hate of Thatcher and Major.

  5. “If you have ever used one of the electronic swingometers you can see how floored they are if you say Labour have 0% votes somehow they still get a few seats lol I think anything about 5% will give the tories a small majority.”

    Not a chance. The tories could possibly lose on 5%. In fact they’d more than likely lose the election if that polling was accurate.

    To even get a 5 seat majority, they’ll need 8 or 9% lead. To guarentee even the smallest majority, I’d say they will need 10%

  6. “Why is this poll in particular being spun so much? The BBC picked it out in their first paper review of the morning on the Today programme, and Reuters UK site has the headline “Conservatives poll lead at 6-month low” (although it should be said that the article is not internally consistent, since it concludes with the sentence “recent polls have shown the party’s lead fluctuate between as much as 17 percent and as little as six percent”).

    Somebody, somewhere, seems to be putting a lot of top-spin on this poll which is bizarre given how volatile the overall picture has been recently.”

    It works both ways. Sky News generally only ever cover polls if it shows an increased tory lead.

    The BBC to be fair, generally cover both increases and falls in tory support/

    The tories are actually benefitting from poll spinning to be honest.

    Some of the coverage of polls in the press is quite mystifying.

    I quote the Guardians poll last month, when tory lead fell from 12 points to 9.

    Their headline “Cameron seals the deal with voters”. On the basis that his personal rating went up by about 1 point.

    Totally ignoring that voting intention had dropped by 3!

    I was quite mystified by that one. Especially as the guardian is often thought of as a left wing paper

    Shows how loyalty in the press (other than the mail and mirror) generally last as long as you are the one in power, setting the media laws!


    May I suggest d) for addition to your list:-

    “I don’t understand what the Polls are saying about Labour support recently & I can’t wait for the General Election to find out.”

  8. This talk of bias in the system always intrigues me ! Isn’t there a Boundary Commission that sorts these things out.

    Has anybody thought that Labour supporters vote more intelligently ? In Richmond, Surrey , for example, I can assure you Labour support is more than 10%. But over many elections they have learnt that voting Labour in their seat would be a waste of a vote. Hence, they vote LD. Same here in Surbiton.

    What is the point of coming a good second 15% behind ? Like the entire Tory vote in Scotland.

    The Labour vote is more efficiently distributed. Simple.

  9. PAUL B

    “Why is this blog not representive of the polls it seems you just have desprate Labour voters on here.”

    Why do you ask this?

    Surely, such posters are no more “Desperate” as you put it, than Conservative Supporting commentators on the Site who are advocating equally persuasive arguments?

    I have to say, hopefully without being too Partisan, that given the fact that the UK is emerging from one of the worst economic recessions it has known since the 1930’s, that the Conservatives Should Be Polling Considerably More Than 38% in the Polls.

  10. Surely both Labour, the Conservatives and the Lib Dems need their “Core Voters” as well as their “Swing Voters” to be motivated to turnout on Election Day in order to win the “Key Marginal Seats”?

  11. Where does Labour see its core vote? I would have thought universities would be core so I’m surprised Labour have announced such large ( for them ) cuts.

  12. @Wolf

    The student vote is impossible to chase effectively. Very few students are kindly disposed to this government due to Iraq, top up fees and the loans fiasco.

    It is impossible to gauge how many students operate a postal vote in home constituencies, and many simply don’t vote at all. Whilst not irrelevant, the student vote is at best marginally important.

  13. ‘WOLF
    Where does Labour see its core vote? I would have thought universities would be core so I’m surprised Labour have announced such large ( for them ) cuts.’

    but students dont vote.

  14. I like comparative politics; without offering a candle to Labour it is worth noting that much of the western world is in the same problem we are (albeit to a slightly lesser degree). I argue that the problem we have is caused by labour espousing Tory economic free market policies (privatise!). I certainly think we’d be in much the same problem if the tories had been in power; both followed silly excessive freemarket policies (like the USA) and have paid the penalties.

    And which economy didnt; China. Which is the new strongest economy? Guess… (And Abu DHabi…)

    PAUL B
    “Why is this blog not representive of the polls it seems you just have desprate Labour voters on here.”’

    Would say that overall the vast majority of emails here are pro-tory; often extremely so (rural rump / UKIP / BNP). This site has a handful of party faithful from other parties and a handful from ‘none of the above’ would be my view after having read this site for a couple of years.

    I would never view this site as pro–Labour. In fact the amount of slurs (‘ooooooh it’s a Guardian reader’ worthy of a Tory Panto…) against anyone who does not follow tory lines gets annoying…

    (Reason 60001 not to vote tory in the coming election; they are actually bothering with a free vote on retracting the anti-hunting bill. At this point of the economic disaster dont we have more important things to worry about than returning rural England to an historic theme park?)

  16. I had a poke around with UNS and the total share of the vote from 1979 to 2005, and how the projections compared to the actual seats.

    It looks like whoever wins gains 20-25 seats over the UNS projection (lowest 10 (2005), highest 38 (1983)).

    I can’t say why this is, but I really think that the chances of a hung Parliament are much slimmer than newspapers like to think so that they can create a lot of copy…

    @ Wolf

    Unis might be a core vote for Labour, notwithstanding what I’ve seen in my own university, but they rarely vote (something like half as likely to vote as over-55s and half as many of them).

  17. @ Jack

    Your claim about the BNP and UKIP being “tory rump” are not substantiated by the polling data.

    Look at where BNP votes come from; white, young, class DE males in the North-West of England and industrial towns? Not exactly a hotbed of Thatcherite neo-liberals, methinks…

  18. Rod Crosby wrote an interesting article for PoliticalBetting in April 2008 which explains why it’s unlikely that regional differences will give the Tories more than a 5 seat bonus:

  19. Colin

    Having read the last twenty or so posts, I’m adding;

    e) If I start any point with the words “I’m not being partisan but” it automatically makes the rest of the paragraph wholly balanced, regardless of what words I choose to put in the said paragraph. Fact.

    There is nothing more fascinating then a lack of self-awareness.

    On your more substantive point about Labour’s recovery, it is there for all to see. However overall it has been a poor 2009. The tories are pretty much where they started in January, despite mix-ups on european referenda, austerity and duck houses. Libdems have advanced very slightly. Labour are down a few points on the second Brown bounce.

    I feel Brown has promised more than he’s delivered, twice. Firstly he promised us a vision in 2007 and if we got one, it wasn’t hugely visible. Then he promised more than he could realistically deliver on the economy in late 2008. Both bounces were accompanied by tory wobbles, firstly on grammar schools as I remember, then in late 2008 they were (presentationally, at least) all at sea regarding the financial crisis. I think this latest Brown bounce has been more to do with tory wobbles (austerity, europe) than any particular promise from Brown, hence the bounce has been less pronounced.

    I think there is plenty of scope for better economic news to give Brown a boost on his own. Should that be accompanied by another tory wobble, then things will get interesting. However the tories have been remarkably consistent of late, suggesting to me that they have sealed the deal with at least 37-8% of the electorate – not quite enough, but formidable. We’re reasonably sure that, even in a bad year, the tories are good for 30+% and Cameron is more popular than Hague or Howard, so we should be able to add a few on to that.

    The debates will be interesting. Conventional wisdom has it that Cameron is the one with all to lose, but luckily he’s reasonably good on camera. Could go either way. Clegg’s performance will add a third dimension, at present he’s not well known.

    Also it would seem for the first time in a GE that incumbency is an encumbrance. As Labour have the most incumbents, they may get the backlash from the expenses fiasco. If ever there was a time to be a PPC rather than a sitting MP, 2009 surely is it.

    I’m sure we can all agree that this is the most interesting (in terms of uncertainty) GE since 1992 if not further back The economic environment makes it feel more like the 1970s in many ways and the uncertainty regarding the GE reflects a 1970s feel too.

    Time for bed. Goodnight all.

  20. Clearly, the polls are not producing any pattern in voting. This coming GE could be the end of the current way of polling, as no one seems to have a clue of the size of Cameron’s majority.

  21. Re the site, it has changed in the last 3 months.
    As an open Labour Party member there was a time 6-9 months ago when I was in a very small minority trying to seeks crumbs of comfort, straw clutching etc.
    The poster population is more balanced now but Labour leaning (and in my view over optimistic) posts have been more frequent.
    King Harold must be on holiday as he redresses the balance (may be tips it) on his own.
    As a labour party member you would expect me to be critical of Cameron but I have to try to place myself in the mind of a swing voter – not easy.
    So when I say that I think Cameron lacks depth and Osborne is unimpressive and that as the GE approaches this will cost the cons support, am I being partisan and over optimistic or realistic.
    Like Old Nat I have learnt a great deal from this site in 2 years or so and enjoy reading alternative opinions/analysis and now feel I have develop less subjectivity in my analysis.

    So in an attempt to give a real Labour view, here goes.

    GB unpopular and much core vote feel let down by Labour.
    Whilst their is a debate aroundfiscal stimulus the Governments actions have credibility and the timing of the debt reduction is a genuine difference between the parties that will energise some disappointed former labour support.

    Cameron is not particularyly convinciung but he presents well generally and this will probably be enough to see him home as ‘Time for a change’ will resonate.

    Osborne is a liability (Conservative friends of mine agree) and any victroy will be in spite of him.

    Therefore, whilst I believe we will get a ’79 type result (adjusted for Nats and LD growth) with a working con majoity there is still scope (hope if you like) that the Labour (and LD in their inTory targets) vote will hold up enouigh to deny cameron an outright majority.

  22. I only started using this site since the glasgow north east by-election. Since then I have found the opinion generally informed and interesting.
    I would (also with my two degrees ‘OLDNAT’) like to wish you all the very best of the seasons greetings whichever party you support and look forward to the continued detailed observation of the polls in the new year.

    Merry Christmas.

  23. I don’t really know why the Conservatives have agreed to the debates including the Lib Dems. Without them, it made a certain amount of sense, as Cameron has more charisma that Brown… But with the Lib Dems it’s giving them free publicity, legitimising them as potential winners, and gives Clegg a podium. And Clegg is just as charismatic, perhaps more so, than Cameron.

    The Lib Dems pick up after any publicity, as people remember they exist. Reminding people there’s an alternative anti-government vote is the worst thing the Conservatives could have done. And they don’t have an anti-Lib-Dem strategy, concentrating instead on attacking the government.

    And there is significant risk here… Every point that the Lib Dems gains increases the lead over Labour needs. And there’s a tipping point at which the Lib Dems eat so much into conservative marginals that even with a lead in the national vote the largest party would be Labour.

  24. Most interesting detail in this poll.a majority of respondents don’t think that the Tories are a good alternative to Labour.This could develop into a better the devil you know situation next May.

  25. @Jay Blanc


    A three-way TV debate is actually a real potential threat to Cameron as by the time it happens Clegg will know (if he does not already) that he has to concentrate his fire mainly at the Tories- both in terms of the electoral map/ math and also in terms of the key issue. That is of course the ‘economy stoopid’ where LD’s are much closer to Lab on need to phase in cuts as opposed to economically extreme crash-bang-wallop austerity medicine of Camerborne which many leading economists proclaim will acquire the UK a ‘double-dip’ in fast measure.

    A Brown Vs Cameron match up held much less danger for Cameron but he rather idiotically boxed himself in by demanding a full 3-way debate in the immediate aftermath of being elected leader when Tories were behind or in a tiny lead (if I recall “cowardly labour” ,”undemocratic”, “authoritarian”blah blah blah ad nauseam).

    I’d also like to see a Darling Vs Osborne Vs Cable debate as well…one can only imagine there being a single catastrophic loser in that debate…!

  26. It’s not impossible that Brown and Cameron will do a great job of destroying each other during the debates, but forgetting that there’s a third person there who’ll come out looking like the victor.

  27. @Richard Manns

    “Your claim about the BNP and UKIP being “Tory rump” are not substantiated by the polling data. Look at where BNP votes come from; white, young, class DE males in the North-West of England and industrial towns? Not exactly a hotbed of Thatcherite neo-liberals, methinks…”

    Despite introducing this as a retort to BNP/ UKIP being ‘Tories’ you then only deal with the former !!

    UKIP voters are predominantly rural, shire, county and suburban and heavily concentrated in south east. south west and east of England though healthily represented elsewhere also.

    UKIP voters are-by vast majority- natural Tories.

    One of the fascinating elements of the upcoming election is going to be just how much of the Tory vote leeches to UKIP as that could seriously reduce possibility of Tory overall majority.

    On BNP I agree totally: main caveat though is that these are not lost labour votes in the sense that BNP voters are not- for the large part- previous labour voters. No- they are lost potential votes in the sense that these C2 DE white male under 35’s will never have voted once before in their entire lives. Sure in the past they would have been natural labour constituency: but their votes are not lost to Labour in the way that UKIP votes are by a heavy majority lost to the Tories. UKIP voters will predominantly have voted before and they will have predominantly voted Conservative.

    The UKIP impact on the Tory vote is much more significant than the BNP vote on Labour.

    Labour actually has more to fear from the Green Party at the next election (as do the left fringe of the Lib Dems). Due to war, environment, public sector paying cost for bailing out the bankers, strong approach to controlled migration etc the ‘middle class lefties’ have all deserted Labour- some for Lib Dems but most for the Green party.

    The greens are to labour what UKIP is to the Tories.

  28. Rob Sheffield

    While I recognise that most posters here are talking about the English political system (and probably drawing a lot of conclusions from behaviour in the South and Midlands), it’s worth while remembering that many inferences don’t apply north of the Border.

    Here the polls suggest that the Tories are not seen as likely to be a good government for Scotland – even by 20% of those who will vote Tory for the Scottish Parliament!

    It will be interesting to see how many Scottish Green Party candidates stand for Westminster. Currently they put up no candidates for the FPTP seats at Holyrood – selecting to stand only for the list seats. They are no significant threat to Labour here, but dependent on the dynamics of individual seats, what you describe as the ‘middle class lefties’ (who are probably very centrist in Scotland) are likely to vote tactically for the most electable non-Tory, whether SNP, Labour or LD.

  29. @OLNAT

    My analysis is for England.

    That is where UK general elections are won and lost.

    That will be even more so the case after the next GE as -whoever is in- the government will not be able to resist the pressure for a more equitable central-local financial settlement (than the Barnett formula) and for the reduction of the number Scotts/ Welsh and Ulster seats for the UK parliament.

  30. As I have mentioned before UKIP will hold their noses and vote tory. As an outed tory I know many who voted for UKIP and without exception they are not even going to “not vote”. They are terrified by the possibility of a hung Parliment with the thought of a LIB/LAB pact and what it will do to there European ambitions. I am afraid I do not know of a single BMP member, and I cannot believe they could eminate from the tory fold.

  31. @glen Otto

    Cameron already betrayed them on Europe and furthermore will have to tack back to the centre (as Indie editorial suggested the other day) between now and the election to actually have a chance of winning a workable majority (i.e. 12+ to give him a four year opportunity before By-Elections take his majority away).

    Both these elements (and the final tepid light blue nature of the Conservative election manifesto) will put off the majority of the UKIP supporters from doing what you assert.

    The key question is: do they vote against the Conservatives in all the hundreds of constituencies where they are standing against them? Or do they sit on their hands. The former will be a huge problem for the Conservatives.

    You seem to be praying for/ relying upon a ‘1997 scenario’. This is *not* a 1997scenario when a lot of the far left (vis-a-vis groups like GROT) voted for a single time for Labour. There is no supra-Conservative major emotion for ‘getting rid of them’. There is no supra-Conservative great enthusiasm for the Conservatives as a alternative government. The small parties are going to be crucial in this coming election.

    I think you are completely wrong on this one.

  32. Rob Sheffield

    As I indicated, my guess was that you were arguing from an English perspective, but you did not make that clear initially.

    I’m interested in your assertion that there will be a further reduction in the number of Scots MPs (other than a proportionate reduction if Cameron reduces the total number).

    It would be odd if that happened if Labour managed to hang on – as you suggest. If they do, then 2010 will be one of those very few election years in which a tranche of Scottish Labour MPs actually do allow that to happen. That would, of course, invalidate your second sentence.

    Such a reduction would, however, be reasonable if Scotland gained fiscal autonomy under revised financial arrangements.

  33. A couple of points re the TV “debates”.

    First, the format has not yet been decided as I read it. ie Whether questions will be ad hoc from the audience, or via the Chair-or from the Chair with no audience participation.
    The three sessions are to be themed-but the subject areas are not yet decided.
    All of these matters can favour one or the other of the three participants & enhance or reduce the element of inter-play between them.
    I see Cameron’s open sessions with live audiences around the country as good grounding for full audience participation. Brown on the other hand might be happier with prepared questions on known policy areas where his love of detail & numbers can be used.

    Second, I believe that the effect of these sessions on the TV audience will be as much about how the participants say things & conduct themselves, as about what they say.

  34. @ Rob Sheffield

    I am sorry you could not be more wrong. UKIP hopes to dislodge the speaker to make a point. You obviously do not know any UKIP supporters. They are not looking back at the past. They are looking forward and see the tory party as the best way of positioning on Europe. They are also, as a party broke.

  35. @ GLEN OTTO

    I think you must be correct re UKIP.

    What does any UKIP supporter gain by putting Labour back in?

    LIbDems have the most slavishly pro EU attitudes.

    Brown has just allowed himself to be outthought & outmanoeuvred by the Sarkozi / Merkel axis on post Lisbon appointments.As a result our influence has been reduced.

    To vote for either of these parties would seem to be self defeating madness for a UKIP supporter.
    At least with Cameron there is the feel of Euro Scepticism, which might be used to stem the tide .

  36. @glenn otto

    you sound as if you believe you know every UKIP voter in the country! I think you are generalising from your own circle of- I am guessing- UKIP members (as opposed to voters).

    As said, Cameron has already stabbed the UK Eurosceptic voter in the back on the issue of a referendum and the mood music on Europe in the run up to the election will- as with other areas of policy- tack back towards the centre. There are no positives for Cameron in chasing the right wing fringe as all elections are won in the centre ground.

    UKIP are standing in hundreds of constituencies not just against the speakers- where (by the way) an alliance of Lab/ Lib Dem/ Green etc will vote Bercow back in. Across those hundreds of constituencies anti European voters will vote for the only party that has the smack of genuine scepticism about it: and that is not the Tories. Farage is quite articulate in his argument on the matter of why- if you are a sceptic- you most certainly should not vote Tory !!


    UKIP voters won’t vote for Lib Dems or Labour and I am not aware of anyone saying that in this thread !!

    They will vote UKIP; or they will sit on their hands; and a small minority who are really disgruntled Tories and anti Labour first and foremost will vote Conservative. But these will be in a small minority of UKIP voters.

  37. @oldNat

    Scotland won’t get fiscal autonomy; like Wales they’ll get a cut in central funding and a reduction in MP’s the main result being that the Welsh and Scottish administrations will have to cut spending and raise taxes (in Scotland by the maximum leeway they are allowed within their constitutional settlement; and in Wales if as seems likely they are given this kind of power after the election). This will be a gift from whatever party/ coalition is in power in Westminster after the next election.

    This is partly a matter of an idea whose time has come (updated west Lothian question) i.e. England (and English voters/ tax payers) largely subsidise the perceived better deal on public spending (such as health and education) that (in particular) Scotland has managed to retain up-to-now; plus in the severe public spending climate of the next 3 years it will be an obvious target to pass the responsibility of cutting to the regional administrations by cutting the money the UK parliament gives them.

    Buy you are not going to be getting (fiscal) autonomy any decade soon.

  38. Rob Sheffield

    It may be Xmas, and Anthony may have given posters a present in allowing more partisan posting than normal. However, this is still a site where assertions require a substantive basis – preferably from polling evidence, but at least from some authoritative base.

    I note that you supply none. I thought your original response to my post sounded a little petulant – you’ve now confirmed that impression.

    i wish you a Merry Christmas – and the gift of a little humility in the New Year.

  39. @oldnat

    Petulance?! Read back your own posting(s)… in them I read only assertions/ potential scenarios that have no concrete empirical basis to them. But- of course- in the realm of politics and policy (and in the run up to an election especially) it is rather ‘Cnut’-like to demand pure ‘scientific’ and ‘evidence-based justifications’ for what are political debating points and psephological speculation!

    I am not commenting in any of my replies on Bayesian polling methodologies etc etc I am reporting matters that are debated in political circles. Such as the changes to the Barnett Formula already being planned by Brown and the further steps down the road towards a ‘equitable settlement of the British Isles’ hinted at By Cameron in a speech at the Welsh Assembly a few months ago. I am surprised you seem unaware of either….

    And of course- clearly being a ‘Scots Nat’- you will find my account on that subject rather uncomfortable: I thoroughly understand that.

    But please do not try to censor posters or close down debate simply because it is not to your partisan taste. Nor cloak this attempt at partisan debate-suppression as somehow about ‘backing your arguments up’! That’s cheap that really is.

    I wish you a merry Hogmanay !

  40. Rob Sheffield

    “UKPollingReport is a site for non-partisan discussion of polls.”

  41. @oldnat

    as I just said

    “please do not try to censor posters or close down debate simply because it is not to your partisan taste”.

    I am debating various issues here rather thasn trying to stop that discussion from taking place.

    Plus- of course- I am non-aligned: you clearly are not…

  42. @ Rob Sheffield

    I personally suspect that UKIP causes more of a drain on the Tories than the BNP.

    But polls asking UKIP supporters about their former support don’t seem to support that. I suspect that the Tory drop is mainly due to core Tories saying they won’t vote in protest, rather than a UKIP boost, as I don’t recall a boost in UKIP support since the Lisbon Treaty was ratified.


    “UKIP voters won’t vote for Lib Dems or Labour and I am not aware of anyone saying that in this thread !!”

    I didn’t suggest they would.

    I was trying to highlight the pointless risk of voting in a way which might deprive a Conservative of victory -ie another Labour Government & a possible LibDem influence in it-both representing the antithesis of what that UKIP voter actually wants.

    As to “They will vote UKIP; or they will sit on their hands”-well we shall see.

    I agree with OldNat that mere assertion isn’t a basis for any argument-least of all on this website which is frequented -in the main-by thoughtful & analytical people.

  44. @Richard Manns

    I’ll be interested to see any polls in the new year and in the campaign that look at individual seats in East England, South East and South West where UKIP in those sub regions of the Euro constituencies scored their double digits in the Euro Elections six months ago.

    In the YOUGOV poll conducted 10-11 December UKIP got 4% UK national rating; in the poll conducted 3-4 December they got 5% UK National rating.

    The concomitant UK National ratings for Green party and SNP were 3;2 and 3;3 respectively. No one thinks SNP will get 3% in Scotland; and Brighton is predicted to fall to the Greens.

    The issue is what are UKIP getting in their core rural/ shire/ county/ suburban heartlands and how that translates into a general election performance and debate what it means for the Conservative vote in those places.

  45. @Colin

    ” “UKIP voters won’t vote for Lib Dems or Labour and I am not aware of anyone saying that in this thread !!”

    I didn’t suggest they would.”

    er: “What does any UKIP supporter gain by putting Labour back in? LIbDems have the most slavishly pro EU attitudes. To vote for either of these parties would seem to be self defeating madness for a UKIP supporter” this is what you posted earlier. Why have I had to remind you ?!

    Furthermore, I am always rather sceptical of people indulging in self-promotion ergo proclaiming themselves “thoughtful and analytical” compared to others !


    “proclaiming themselves “thoughtful and analytical” compared to others !”

    Read what I said my friend -the first person singular is absent & deliberately so.

    Humility is a Christmasy kind of thing don’t you think?

  47. Rob Sheffield

    “I am non-aligned” :-) ;-)

  48. With the Tories lead slipping away I can eat my Christmas dinner in peace. Bring the election on Gordon the Tories will not win!!!

  49. I am sorry that I put the cat among the pigeons.

    May I wish you all,including Rob, a very merry Christmas and a healthy and exciting New Year.


  50. Happy Christmas one-and-all!

    It is nice to know that I can come here to read sober [sp: WikiDictionary] comments when Mike’s place reverts to kindergarten-mode. Here is looking to 2010!

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