Here’s the effect of Labour’s leadership infighting: Sky are reporting that the Sun has fresh figures from YouGov in tomorrow’s paper and show a shift back towards the Conservatives. The topline figures with changes from yesterday’s poll prior to Geoff Hoon and Patricia Hewitt’s attempted coup are CON 42%(+2) LAB 30%(-1) LDEM 16%(-1).

The changes themselves are within the margin of error, and furthermore conducted when Labour’s infighting was splashed all over the TV and newspapers, but nevertheless I expect it will be taken as a salient reminder of the damage that party infighting can do to support.

I’ll update later when the Sun story comes out and we see what other questions there were.

UPDATE: The exact timings of the poll are between 4pm yesterday and noon today. Sample size was 2,832.

63 Responses to “YouGov’s first post Hoon-Hewitt poll”

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  1. Andrew, I’d put it no higher than 5%

  2. @Don’t-tell-em-Pike

    Er… Do I have to point out that the last non-YouGov poll put the Conservatives at 38? (ComRes 20/12/09)

    If I only took the YouGov pollng, then yes, it’d be a steady-at-40 story. But there are other polling outfits than YouGov. Let’s wait till they put out some polling before we can say that the downward trend for the Conservatives has stopped.

  3. Also, I suspect that YouGov are on the aggressive side of weighting when it comes to LibDem votes, they’re on the lower side of the general polling trend when it comes to the LibDem vote share.

  4. I think the exceptionally cold weather will be more of an influence on the polls than the ‘plot’.

    A lot of people at home instead of at work with more time to read the papers and think.

    Small businesses and self-employed losing money as the economy cools.

    Hoped-for rise out of recession delayed.

    Old folks shivering as they worry about gas bills

    Delays on public transport, and traffic jams – roads not being cleared properly – Councils runnming out of salt.

    NHS under greater pressure – longer waiting times in A & E.

    All these things, each small in itself, add up to bad news for the Govt, and will affect their standing in the polls short-term

  5. @clive elliot

    Alternatively, if people pull through, and the “Worst winter in forty years!” coverage of it continues, then we get the ‘Britain Gets Through a Crisis’ effect which is usually a benefit to the sitting government.

  6. @ jay blanc
    Yes, I get the picture, Labour posters with GB in a homburg smoking a cigar giving the victory sign. Peter Mandelson dancing with American soldiers and Harriet Harman manning
    a WRVS tea trolley at Kings Cross.
    A real winner I reckon.

  7. @Roland Haines

    Nice WWII metaphor, but… Winston Churchill was defeated in a surprise victory for Labour… This was because while Winston Churchill was seen as the international Face of England, it was Clement Atlee who’d been managing the home-front and keeping production lines going, and troops overseas were more interested in getting supplies than warming words. So the ‘Government of the Day’ was seen as Clement Atlee, and he got the benefit of the vote.

  8. @ JAY BLANC

    Good job their wont be any such luck for this present government. Not a Clement Atlee in sight.

  9. @Jay Blanc

    please don’t get me wrong I am not trying to have a go. But with every poll in the last 10 showing the tories on 40% or above, except the one comres you quoted there surely must not be much evidence of a tory decline.

  10. I don’t actually think the Hoon/Hewitt story has made much impact. I think what it shows it that the Conservatives do better when they raise their profile, which had been low since the conference season.

    The LibDems are being and will be squeezed by two strong fronts: voters who want Labour out, and voters who don’t want the Conservatives in. The question is which front will be the strongest.

    The Tories are heading for an overall majority similar to that of 1955 on these figures (about 60).

  11. @Don’t-tell-em-Pike

    Go back just a few more polls than 10 and you’ll see more below 40 from ComRes and Populus.

    Go back, and you see that the Conservatives used to get figures around 42 and 45 from YouGov and ICM.

    So ICM and YouGov now putting out figures around 40 *is* a drop.

  12. @ JAY BLANC

    But the latest YOUGOV poll shows 42% thats above 40%

  13. @ JAY BLANC

    “Go back just a few more polls than 10 and you’ll see more below 40 from ComRes and Populus.”

    So, what you are saying is that the recent Conservative trend is upwards.

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