YouGov’s Daily poll in the Sun is out, and has topline figures of CON 38%(-1), LAB 32%(-1), LDEM 17%(nc). That’s three days in a row with a 6 point Conservative lead, pretty much confirming that things really have narrowing and adding to the evidence that the “Bully Brown” row has not had any negative effect upon Labour’s support.

172 Responses to “YouGov daily poll – 38/32/17”

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  1. Talk of simply saying ‘five more years of Gordon’ saving the Tories I’m afraid only goes to show how lazy and inept Tory thinking has become. Try not to be blinded by your own prejudices. The simple fact is that there is a genuine debate about which party is best to lead us through this period. With the IMF effectively backing Brown’s line, and the BoE and many top flight economists taking the view that the strength of the recovery is more important at present than the deficit, you can whistle all you like about how terrible Gordon is, but voters have a valid choice to make and an increasing number of them don’t like the Tory choice. The recent poll movements have been all about Tories losing popularity, not unpopular Brown. The Institute of Directors has today said that it’s members remain ‘very unconvinced’ by the Tories – a remarkable statement from a generally very Tory supporting organisation 10 weeks out from an election they have been preparing for for over 4 years.

    I said two years ago that the wheels would come off Cameron’s Tories in spectacular fashion at some stage, although I’ve generally thought they would win the election first. If I was sure that there wasn’t more serious dirt coming Brown’s way (which I’m not) I would now be predicting a straight Labour win, albeit with a tight majority. Brown’s unpopularity will in all probability give Cameron his majority, but I think we will then be on the brink of a period of dreadful government with a deeply unpopular and ineffective team at the helm.

  2. Bullygate isn’t over yet, with Darling’s revelations today and Rawnsley isn’t taking his wholly unwarranted trashing lying down either.

    It’s somewhat pre-emptive to say that the polls will remain unaffected by all of this.

  3. NBeale’s remark about “reality” has really made me think about the stuff one posts & reads here.

    That multiple realities in the same space & time are possible is evident from the talk which so often fails to communicate through the membrane between our differing realities.

    Got me thinking about a hierarchy of “membranes”

    I thought-starting with the least porous-

    1. Tribal
    5.Open minded


  4. @James Ludlow – good luck with that one. But out of curiosity what are “Darling’s revelations”? I read the headlines. Then I read the story. They strangely didn’t seem to match.

  5. I think a lot of people have stated that they will vote Conservative over the past couple of years thinking that they can’t be any worse than Labour.

    Now though as we get closer to an election and people actually start to think about what a new government could do they are beginning to think that it might be better to have the devil you know.

    The Tories are going to have to work a lot harder to win their argument I think

  6. @ Gattino – I’m referring to Darling’s claim that “the forces of Hell” were unleashed against him.

    It’s beyond belief that there are people like you still denying that Brown is a world-class bully. But arguing the case with you is clearly as pointless as arguing with a Troofer who believes the Illuminati were behind 9/11.

  7. COLIN

    **3. Health – 34 per cent**

    **On 3 there isn’t much between the main parties.**

    There is a huge difference between Labour and the Conservatives regarding health. Just on cancer -Gordon has put in place testing and treatment within a few days and targeting to reduce operation waiting times etc. Cameron has said he will have no targets and has not pledged to retain the cancer screening.

    The Labour cancer policy on it’s own will save an estimated 10,000 people a year.

  8. THe Forces of Hell , headlines on SKY tv News….plus Brown complete denial on the radio this morning.

    What a bunch!
    Does it alter anything?-probably not.

  9. “Cameron has policies for No2 -but doesn’t talk about them much.This can therefore be capitalised on by Cons.”

    He really doesn’t though. That’s the entire reason he never campaigns too heavily on it.

    The tories actual policy in regards to immigration, right up until about 2005-2006 was nigh on identical to Labours. In fact, Labour were actually criticised by the tories for their points system. As in, it was too harsh! And would scare off workers.

    The only thing that has changed is EU law. Which is something neither party can do anything about.

    Cameron, in truth, probably can’t do that much to stop legal migration. Certainly not much more than Labour’s rules on selection.

    Much of actual immigration is totally legal, work based, and EU based. There are huge employment gaps in the UK, which this makes up most of it. And immigration has increased as the UK economy has grown over the last decade.

    Any changes by the tories will be symbolic, I’d suggest, and they may try to clamp down on the minority of immigrants who try to stay here illegally.

    But really. Legal immigration – the talk of putting “quotas” and “caps” on it is not realistic.

  10. “What was the point of your original post?”

    That newspaper accusations of Brown being a bully are about as relevant as even more documented accounts that Cameron’s head of communications is a bully.

  11. @AL J
    I am glad a view like that is seen as sensible debate rather than pro Labour.

  12. You know, the entire tory claim is that Brown has a bullying culture in his office.

    You know. I think it’s a decent point regarding Coulson, which may come back to bite Cameron

  13. ALJ-yes I’m familiar with the “Cancer ” party line thanks.

    As I understand it Cons policy is basically :-

    a) Ring fence NHS spending .
    b) Make clinicians responsible for outcomes, rather than process.

    So I think the differences are “managerial”-which to the average person is not much difference.

  14. nice to agree with old nat for once
    “Put aside that Mr Coulson was never asked to give evidence to the industrial tribunal or involved in the case” … seems to say it all.

    Labour introduced this amendment to the committee 2 weeks ago. Quite out of thin air. Clearly they were worried then about the Rawnsley book. But attacking someone else is not the same as saying it never happened. And it does seem strange to equate a newspaper office with the cabinet office.

    The poll seems to say no change, but it seems it was set up to do that.

    BTW if a schoolteacher were to grab a child and throw him/her off their seat, that would be an assault these days and the teacher would be sacked.

  15. @Steve – “…think that it might be better to have the devil you know.”. I think there is a lot in this. For much of the time opposition is easy – oppose the government without the pressure of saying much about what you would do. At any election this gets harder, as people need to have a clear idea about your own policies. At this election, with the very diffcult and dangerous circumstances, it’s doubly difficult. I’ve always felt that oppositions, especially if they have been out of power for a long time, have an added difficulty to overcome as people are wary of the unknown, even if the incumbents are unpopular. Essentially this is what happened to Labour in 92, and much of the tone of the Tory posters here is identical to Labour supporters back then. I’m not saying the rsult will be the same this time, but those Tories assuming a return to a 15% poll lead will naturally happen just because they don’t like Labour really do need to think again.

  16. CHRIS
    “the talk of putting “quotas” and “caps” on it is not realistic.”

    Why?-the overwhelming majority of net inward migration has been without the EU. Where is the bar on capping this?.

    Let me help you-here are the numbers from ONS:-

    Net inward migration [email protected]
    USA (13)
    Austr/Nz/Canada (194)
    India/Bang/SL 369
    SA 151
    Pak. 161
    Caribeann 24
    Other Commonwealth 290
    Other foreign-incl Middle East-855

    Total 1813

    Got it?

  17. @CHRIS
    Do you realise ever since Cheryl Cole had tea at number 10, she has had trouble with her marriage!!!

  18. @James Ludlow. I’m still lost. The headlines say “number 10/downing st” launched “the forces of hell” – whatever that means – which you take, as the headlines insinuate – to be another “Brown the bully” story. Yet the interview quoted does not involve Darling talking about Brown or number 10…the interviewer asked “by number 10?” which Darling interupted to pointedly emphasise the tories (or more precisely “and the tories” particularly). When asked specifically about Gordon Brown in the interview the only thing Darling said relevant to the bully smears is that GB wasn;t, hadn;t and didn’t.

    So, again, I’m confused as to what the “Darling revelation” is that you’re relying on to cement the “we all hate brown, he’s a bully” myth which has failed to take hold in the public mind so far.

  19. Gattino – the BBC have been reporting “unleashed by Downing Street among others” all morning , with the “among others” rather quiet and slipped in as an afterthought. Perhaps that’s what’s giving the impression that Darling was describing Brown?

    It’s all a world away from hurling junior staff across the room. Presumably the victim there would by now have claimed compensation, or are they waiting for the right timing to come out with a claim? Or do they exist at all?

  20. Roland

    When I mention cancer screening;-

    **I am glad a view like that is seen as sensible debate rather than pro Labour.**

    **Do you realise ever since Cheryl Cole had tea at number 10, she has had trouble with her marriage!!!**

    I see

  21. It’s looking like Cameron will struggle to acheive the 5% swing that Mrs Thatcher gained in 1979 in a similar situation let alone the 7%+ he needs to get a sensible sized majority. That sort of swing is no mean feat.

    It is not so bad for him, this sort of polling puts him into no 10 with just about enough seats to do something in government, about 10-12 seats short of overall majority. Much more than that and he’s going to have to look for a coalition partner.

  22. Revelation after revelation from hundreds of sources, Gattino, and all concerning bullying, intimidation, threatening behaviour, rages. Yet still there are people who argue that all these many and various accounts are lies. That the Labour-supporting Rawnsley is a liar. That the Labour-supporting Observer and Guardian are secret Tory rags. That it’s all some extraordinary conspiracy against Brown, one that dates back decades and has a cast of 100s.

    And that Mandelson, of course, is telling the truth.

    You people are either willing fools or the willing henchmen of thug government. Perhaps both.

  23. James – that’s all very partisan and personally insulting to those woho are simply asking where is the evidence?

    Hundreds of sources?

    The only evidence is from the survey carried out that suggests Whitehall in general has more bullying than the cabinet Office in particular.

    your letting your prejudice run away with you. Out of all oif the “revelations”, how many tribunals? How many law-suits? How many pay-offs?

    Where is the evidence? We know where the gossip is, but where is the evidence?

  24. Gus O’Donnel says

    **he spoke to the PM about how to get the best out of his staff but never about bullying **

    Daily P

  25. Anthony, why is it that after last night’s poll, in the wma, even though both the main parties fell by 1%, yet only Labour’s position is altered?

  26. @James – have you actually read the Observer since 2001? It might prefer Labour to the Tories, but its editorial pages have a very particular political viewpoint.

    With the exception of Will Hutton, they’re very Blairite (if not necessarily enamoured of Blair), fond of behavioural economics, neo-con on foreign policy and more worried about the left of the Labour Party than the Tories.

    That’s not to say that Rawnsley’s a liar, but it is to say that you can’t call him a tribalist and therefore assume everything he says about Labour is gospel truth. He’s very marginally left of centre, but he’s not exactly Kevin Maguire and I frankly think he’s more concerned with promoting his book than winning the next election for Labour.

    I make no comment as to the truth of the allegations – I neither know nor care – but you’re oversimplifying the issue for partisan purposes.

  27. @ AL J & COLIN

    **Do you realise ever since Cheryl Cole had tea at number 10, she has had trouble with her marriage!!!**

    Hasn’t she thought about the tax break she might lose? :-)

  28. I’ve just watched Cameron and Brown on PMQ’s and I have to say that for all neutral observers this must have been pretty unedifying stuff. All Cameron suceeded in doing was to shout alot and give Brown the chance to deny any rift between him and Darling, at one point saying he would rather have Darling than Osborne to defend. Really dull, really pointless, and sadly again I’m left thinking that although Cameron was given loads of ammunition he just sprayed it around indiscrimiantly to little effect rather than actually take aim and hit something. He really does need to start to refine his attacks so he isn’t just shouting at Brown but linking the personal stuff to a coherent policy critique.

  29. I’m not sure PMQs is really the place for ‘policy critique’. It’s not really that kind of format.

    My opinion with PMQs is that it only really matters for public opinion is if one leader makes a mistake- i..e. ‘saving the world’ or ‘I’ve only been in this job a few days’. I think Brown was a lot easier to trip up initially, but now he has realized he can always come back to the ‘They never talk about policy/ they have no policies’ reply, which is a universal escape from any question, and plays to the ‘no policies’/’lightweight’ attack.

    I wonder, more broadly, how we should conceive of the move back to Labour? Is it natural Labour voters returning to the fold now that a general election is imminent, or genuine switchers who have been turned off the Tories by something they have done or been genuinely won round by Labour?

    It would also be interesting to know where this new Labour support is concentrated- whether it is in the marginals or an even national distribution? If it’s all in their heartlands then it is not going to translate to seats.

  30. @James Ludlow . I’m willing to be corrected, to learn the ways of the wise and have my brain washing undone. I crave it. But you’re still not making much sense. Please help me out. Who has Gordon Brown bullied? Who is he meant to have bullied who hasn’t come out and said “this is completely untrue”?

    It’s not an unreasonable question.

    As I understand there are now 3 strands to this story. Andrew Rawnsley’s book, Christine Pratt and now, you hope, Alistair Darling’s interview.

    Rawnsley’s book makes no allegations of bullying, but of colorfully over the top descriptions of frustrated angry outbursts….something we keep getting told “everybody knows”…though if I count amongst everybody I suspect we only know it because we keep getting told. Of these incidents described by Rawnsley only 4 or 5 specific people are mentioned by name. Bob Shrum, Gus O’Donnel, The prime minster himself and 2 other individuals whose name escapes me.
    On the incident involing Bob Shrum, the gentleman himself has come out and said the incident nor any of the details described by Rawnsley simply never happened. So he’s lying.
    Gus O’Donnel has issued 4 separate statements, each more comprehensive than the last saying the conversation attritubted to him with the pm simply never happeend. So he’s lying.
    The Prime Minister has said in absolute terms the alleged conversation with O’donnel never happened. So he’s lying.
    Of the two other named people in alleged incidents one has apparently said it never happened, the other has not been heard from.

    So Rawnsley’s checkable claims, none of which involve bullying by his own admission, turns out to have any foundation beyond him saying it…andis flatly contradicted by the alleged “victims”. Who of course are lying.

    Then we have Prattgate, in which an obscure and apparently dubious “charity”, which is in fact a commercial business, heavily connected at least socially to senior conservative politicians, and is already under investigation by the charitieis commission has its founder come out and say she was so incensed that “mandelson” and “our leader” has denied that Gordon Brown was a bully that she just had to say that, breaking all rules and conventions on confidentiality – which has lead to all 5 patrons quitting and the “charity” now closing down – they, despite being tiny and virtually unheard of had had several calls from Downing Street staff, including hte non existant Deputy Prime Minister’s Office, but none of which, which she can;t name, identify or give any details about (but is searchng through hundreds of emails anyway for her newly hired publicist Max Clifford), none of which she tells us reference Gordon Brown.

    Finally we have the Chancellor answering a question in which the questioner mentions number 10 – meaing the office – but he himself chooses to say the tories in his reply, and who when asked about Brown denies flat he’s ever been bullied by him.

    So again – forgive me if I’m missing something – who are the victims, what are the incidents, where is the accusation that Gordon Brown is a “bully” that you’re expecting the rest of us to go along with? If you seen it you’re a better man than I. Enlighten me, please!

  31. Alec – there’s an interesting (and complimentary)article on Cameron’s rise in the FT to-day. He was always there with the lione, the advice, the wisdom right from his early twenties.

    What he’s like at listening to others as opposed to advising them is under scrutiny. Leadership requires judgement as well as knowledge and affability

  32. Could it be that the public have a stereotypical view of the Labour party, as knuckle dragging manual workers but with good hearts, you know, ‘good to his mum’ etc.
    They aren’t ‘ refained’ like the Tories but get the job done, a few pints and a bit of bullying didn’t stop us winning the war.
    I think that most people realise that there is a fine line between big beast behaviour and bullying, Gordon is a big noisy bloke with one eye, he will obviously bump into people, but he’s good to his mum!
    My mum thinks he’s great.

  33. @ My previous………. forgot my ;-)

  34. “Gus O’Donnel says

    **he spoke to the PM about how to get the best out of his staff but never about bullying ** ”

    Ah-Sir Humphrey speaks at last!

  35. “but he himself chooses to say the tories in his reply,”

    Listen again GATTINO-he said they joined in.( They are paid to do that Gattino)

    He did not demur from Randal’s assertion about No 10.

    He said that the one thing which stays with him is that “I am still here, and one of them isn’t”. Gattino-who do you think he might have been referring to?

    I’ll give you a clue-one of the two which Randall mentioned. The other one ,who works for Labour’s biggest funding Trade Union, briefed journalists immediately after Darling’s ” worst for 60 years” speech. How do we know that Gattino-it was revealed on DP this morning.

    Does that help?

  36. Amber

    Will she lose any tax breaks? ;-)

    I have copied PMQ ‘s-have some thoughts – but a bit later.

    I agree Alec.

  37. Does this mean UKIP and the BNP might end up with an MP somewhere (I hope not). Does anyone have an idea of current expected turnout? I think the figures may well just show how dissolutioned most people are with politicans.

  38. Gattino – you are really desperate if you think Rawnsleys stories are without foundation. The lobby know they are true from their own sources.

    And Gus’s comments say it all —- “**he spoke to the PM about how to get the best out of his staff but never about bullying **”

    In other words Rawnsleys stories are totally true. Why on earth would the Cabinet secretary have to say anything, anything at all, to the prime Minister no less about how to get the best out of his staff !

    The generic term ‘bullying’ is used as cover for a whole range of incidents of disgraceful behaviour. The close definition of the word (not used by Rawnsley) gives plenty of wriggle room. But it cannot hide the truth of the actual behaviour.


    “Cannot understand how 32% are still voting for Brown !!!”

    I used to say the same thing in the 1980’s about the 40% voting for Thatcher: deal with it !!

  40. The problem for the forces of Conservatism, wrt the bully gossip, is that for people to be interested in the gossip, they must be also interested in the lives of those involved in the story. That’s why OK, and Hello, etc, are successful. In their case, people are interested in the minutia of the lives of the people at the centre of the gossip, and those connected with the story. Now as far the bully gossip, the vast majority of people couldn’t care less about gossip concerning the lives of politicians. Scandal yes, gossip no. Also I would hazard a guess that most people probably think that the Cabinet Secretary is the lady who takes the minutes at cabinet meetings, and would have absolutely no idea who Rawnsley is.

    That is why there is very little public interest in this gossip.

  41. @ Gattino – there are (at least) three strands to the current Bully Brown story. One of them involves hundreds of collated allegations – read the interview with Rawnsley in today’s Guardian. There have been many other allegations against Brown of exactly this sort of behaviour in the past, going right back to his pre-politics career.

    I realise that on this site I come across as a diehard Tory. I’m not though. I have only ever voted Labour in past general elections. I’ve become a (floating) Conservative Party supporter because this Labour government appals and frightens me. I’ve been aware of this sort of conduct among its upper echelons for some years now and that is why I can no longer support it. If the Labour Party one day rediscovers its soul, I’ll be back like a shot. But for that to happen, Brown, Balls, Mandelson and company need to go and the only way that’s going to happen is through a period in opposition.

  42. Does no-one else find it depressing that we’re talking about this sort of crap when the country is facing huge economic problems?

  43. For the sake of Athony’s blood pressure, can I suggest we slightly adapt the discussion of the various allegations into a discussion of whether they will swing the polls? I say this, because the current discussion is pointless. Nothing that has been said would as yet stand up in a court of law, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it didn’t happen. Your various views and interpretations run along party lines and aren’t really that illuminating.

  44. PMQ IMO
    Cameron 6/10
    Brown 4/10

    Cameron would have got a higher score but he ballsed up his final question. He ment to say “since 2005” instead he said “since Labour came to power”.
    This mistake let Brown of the hook. Considering the ammo, not a bad effort by DC but not great.


    “Revelation after revelation from hundreds of sources, Gattino, and all concerning bullying, intimidation, threatening behaviour, rages.”

    You can drone on and on about this (like all Cameron could do at PMQ’s was shout about it rather incoherently) but its not going to make any difference to non alligned voters. They want to hear about what the parties are proposing to do after the next GE….

    You and Cameron need to focus on your policy message and start to try and attract people to yourselves rather than try and turn people off Labour.

  46. ALEC
    I totally concur, agree, go along with you, its getting us absolutely nowhere. No it wont hurt Brown one bit.
    Cameron has to get his posterior engaged into his syncronized change speed mechanism.

  47. Is it such a difficult question to get an answer to?

    For the 3rd time of asking can anyone who wants us to buy the demon brown story please, please, please, name a person he is meant to have bullied, excluding anyone who has denied it outright?

    Just one.

    Pretty please.

    I haven’t found it in any of these stories, which is why it isn;t sticking the way some would clearly wish.

  48. On the whole may I say how refreshing it is to read the posts on this site. Generally informative and intelligent.
    However it does make me chuckle when I read some of the more partisan posts.
    There’s no use at all denying the narrowing of the polls, believing it to be false or just being hopeful!!
    It is what it is and ought to leave the more partisan reflective.
    The post that said if the next 71 days reflect the last 71 we would see a 4% Tory lead ought to be considered very carefully indeed by the Tories before it’s too late.
    I read far more of this stuff than is good for me and it seems that the Tories are so disgusted with Brown they just can’t see why anyone would vote for him, but that’s not enough. The public WILL vote on policies in the end, they always do.

  49. Roland – he’s too busy aiming it at the fan !

    Gattino – the victim is biding his or her time before producing the photos of black-eyes, broken machinery and tangerine peel… Watch this space…

  50. @ Gattino – read the interview with Rawnsley. Contrary to Mandelson’s claims, he does in fact give references for his allegations. Lots of them.

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