The only poll I know of tonight is YouGov’s daily poll in the Sun. The topline figures there are CON 37%(-3), LAB 31%(-1), LDEM 20%(+2). A fall for the Conservatives and I’ll offer my normal caveat after any interesting changes in the polls: it’s the trend that counts, so wait and see if it is repeated elsewhere. It could be a genuine shift, or it could be as transitory as the 5 point YouGov lead we had earlier in the week.

The additional questions today were a repeat of the “who is doing best in the campaign” questions that showed the Lib Dems doing so well when YouGov first asked them at the beginning of the campaign – after the first week the Conservatives come top – 32% think David Cameron had the best first week of the campaign, with Clegg and Brown equal on 16%. 25% think the Conservatives have been the most impressive in the campaign so far (16% think the Lib Dems have, with Labour last on 13%). Finally, 31% think David Cameron has been most successful in getting his message across, followed by Brown on 15% and Clegg on 13%.

461 Responses to “Conservatives down 3 in today’s YouGov poll”

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  1. Calm down, calm down. It’s just normal variation around the average of polls of polls of 38% for the Tories.

  2. “who is doing best in the campaign” is surely a pointless question as it’s possible to think one side’s doing best in the campaign but hate the fact!

  3. Put the YouGov figs in the UKPR Swing Calculator and you get;

    Lab 283, Con, 283, LD 53

    Hung Parliament: Labour 43 seats short

    I know its only under the standard UNS – but if the final result was an exact tie in the new House of Commons then it would certainly make for an interesting situation post 7th May.

  4. Obviously a better poll for Labour, but as ever it needs the support of the next few polls to be significant.

    24 days left and still no clear outcome.

  5. It suggests the 40% figure in recent days may be over egging the Tory vote. The last 5 YG polls break down as 40%=3 and 37%=2. Therefore, we might assume the Tory vote is 39% (38.8 tbp). On this basis, the Tories aren’t actually breaking through the 40 point mark. With Labour hovering around 32 in most polls, even with the extra marginal swing and a handful of Ulster Unionists, the Tories would be lucky to squeeze a majority of 1.

  6. @MLB – the scenario described must be a Lib Dems dream. Talk about kingmakers….I would tend to believe such a sharp movement is indeed normal variation until I see some corroberation. Having said that, YG have been posting higher Tory scores than anyone else, so maybe they are just coming into line again.

    Interesting findings on the campaigns so far. I recall in ’92 Labour was generally felt to have run the best campaign, but we all know what the result was.

  7. This is the dodgiest poll I have ever seen from YG.

    Combined L & T is 68

  8. Well if the Tory vote is down 3% after the best weeks campaigning then I guess I will have no problems on the stump next week convincing the home counties voters not to waste their vote on DC but to give it to us UKIP. :D

  9. Eoin, there was a 39/29/20 last week, combined L+C =68.

  10. I don’t think there’s any point is putting these numbers into swing calculators. It would be more useful to stick the UKPR polling average in them.

  11. @Eoin

    “Combined L & T is 68”.

    That hung parliament bandwagon? May be time to revise your expectations. If the big 2 can’t consolidate soonish, it’s going to be very unpredictable right to the finish. UKIP joining the fray will just add to it.

  12. @Statto,

    Exactly my point…

    Labour on 29?

    the dog in the street knows its 38.5 v 31

  13. A good poll for Labour but not great, have just seen their first election video, makes a big case for not a time for change. And Labour manifesto tomorrow, interesting to see what impact that and the video will have on the polls, when are the other parties publishing their manifesto’s?

  14. I went away for the weekend with 10 % leads ingrained. I thought the tories had had a better week than Labour, and according to the results above, I would not be alone in thinking that. I honestly thought there would now be leads of up to 12%, only to come back with leads of 7’s and 8’s and now a 6!

  15. Labour haven’t exceeded 32% for more than a week now. On the other hand, 37% for the Conservatives isn’t unusual in recent polls.

    A somewhat disappointing poll for both main parties and increasingly good for the Lib Dems.

  16. The 37/31/20 Sun Poll is – as said – within MOE.

    At the moment the extreme high for Tories is 40% with Labour extreme low of 28% on those figures the LDs would be on around 23.

    This would equate to a Tory government of around 14 seats.

    I think the pollsters were taking this sort of view in their assumptions for 6 May and – given historical actual results may not be far off the mark . . . .

    As it stands at the moment . . . .

  17. Tories Tuesday, Lib Dems Wednesday

    Wonder if the draw lots :)

  18. i don’t think that the polls marking the different campaigns are worth anything. In 1987, people thought that Labour’s campaign scored highly in technical merit AND artistic impression. It scored quite low in effect on the voters.

    The question asks people to give a view not as a voter but as a critic – and that is fairly unnatural. And also not really relevant.

    Personally, I think Labour has actually scored a major victory. All parties are talking in terms of “THE RECOVERY”.

    It would be more accurate to say that the economy has been kept afloat by public debt and quantitative easing – but the Tories are shy of going down this route lest Labour scream about ‘talking down Britain’. Neither is sustainable. But, if there is a recovery, then it is very appealing to keep with the party that brought about the recovery. They will overlook that the party’s policies (“print that cash”, “borrow, borrow, borrow!!”) need to change.

    My opinion, Labour victory maybe falling short of absolute majority. It won’t be predicted by the pollsters, as a lot of waverers will “play safe” on polling day.

    (However, Alternative-Voting to explode in Labour’s face when the 2015 election takes place after years of IMF imposed cuts…)

  19. Fascinating that Labour are briefing no big spending committments in the manifesto and the broadcast features the risks to the recovery. It’s clear they have decided to avoid competing with the ever increasing spending pledges from the Tories and try to position themselves as more realistic and honest, while presumably hoping some good economic news turns up before May 6th. I still feel that daily promises of tax cuts and spending promises from Cameron are risking the steady eroding of his credibility and could give Labour a chance.

  20. The fact that the Conservatives have not continued to push ahead after what most people agree has been a very good week for them indicates to me that they are hitting a glass ceiling and there is about 60 % of the population who switch off every time they open their mouths. The only hope therefore for hitting more than 40% would be for turnout to be a major factor and this will also I believe decide which Polling Co has suceeded in best factoring this in

  21. @Alec

    Speaker Bercow’s position in the event of a Con-Lab tie in MP’s could be very interesting – both in terms of his constutional position and also his alleged pro-Labour leanings.

    As for your comments about 1992 – I agree, the 2010 Election could well turn out to be 1992 Redux with another pollsters enquiry post-election.

  22. @MLK, Alec,

    very intelligent comments

  23. Anthony, the YouGov website is showing the “best week” numbers the other way around –

    A mistake I presume?

  24. EOIN – Remind me, didn’t you believe the Tory bounce from the NI increase would be temporary? I can’t remember now.

  25. Also just wanted to add (and nothing to do with polls) that I have great admiration for the Sue Marsh’s, Barnaby M’s, Roland H’s and all the others here who actually join and campaign for their various parties at election time. You people, more than anyone else, are the ones who keep democracy alive. Most of you will have tasted sweet success and miserable failure, but thanks to you people knocking on doors and manning the phone lines, we have a system of representative democracy that nearly works.

  26. Alec – thank you. It is my love of democracy, my absolute belief in the power and ability of people to change their own lives that keeps me doing it. (Pollyanna)

  27. It’s amusing how, despite being warned not to, people still jump on one convenient poll and run with it….

  28. @Alec

    Essentially, DC was spooked by the endless repetition of the “Tory cuts, Labour investment” mantra.

    So now, Labour has turned on a sixpence to present: “Labour restraint, Tory profligacy”.

    That’s what comes of listening to pollsters and focus groups!!

  29. Rollercoaster ride!

    Tories need to break the glass ceiling of 40% to guarantee a majority. Labour need to push up to 34% to be able to be the largest party and then to form a coilition government.

    Anything can happen – which is kind of interesting!

  30. @Sue

    100% yes.

    it will tighten and tighten and tighten

    Anyone who is stoopid enuff to pay heed to my ramblings will know that I have yet to rule out a labour majority.

  31. In the polling booths, morals, decency, and convictions will count for a lot.

  32. @MLB – “Speaker Bercow’s position in the event of a Con-Lab tie in MP’s could be very interesting – both in terms of his constutional position and also his alleged pro-Labour leanings.”
    This one is probably a bit of a dead duck. The speaker won’t have anything to do with inter party negotiations, and if there is ever a tie in a commons vote I seem to recall that the casting (Speakers) vote is by convention to vote against whatever the motion is, although I could be wrong on this.

  33. Joseph1832
    ‘(However, Alternative-Voting to explode in Labour’s face when the 2015 election takes place after years of IMF imposed cuts…)’

    I’d say that is a very courageous prediction Joseph.

  34. @Eoin,

    If there is a Labour majority I will post you a book token for Borders.
    ow, forgot, they went under in the recession.


  35. @rich,

    for what it is worth, you posts have got less partisan every day you have posted

    Except for that VAT stuff but I do not want to go there

  36. @Eoin Clarke (sorry can’t do the acute) (10.35)

    “This is the dodgiest poll I have ever seen from YG.
    Combined L & T is 68”

    Eoin, can’t see why you are calling it dodgy.

    I understand that Com Res today indicated that 46% of respondents favoured a balanced parliament
    (26% L/LD, 20% C/LD). IMHO, after many years the electorate are realising that it doesn’t have to be red vs blue.

    In addition, your later “dog in the street” post indicates you expect 38.5% C , 31% L. At a total of 69.5%, surely your dodgy 68% is within MOE.

  37. Tim: Which ones particularly “amused” you?

    Was it Roland’s “it’s all over now” after a couple of 10% leads for the Conservatives?

  38. I would dearly love to be out and about bothering the public in the cause of the Tories, but since I joined the rozzers I have been barred from “active involvement in politics”. It may explain my obsession with “inactive involvement” such as this website!!

  39. @Tim – “It’s amusing how, despite being warned not to, people still jump on one convenient poll and run with it….”
    Tim – I think you’re perhaps being a little unfair. YG has been on a bit of a limb with the highest Tory score of all the pollsters recently, so there is some logic in thinking this could be a little more than just normal variation, although as i previously said we need to wait and see.

    @Joseph1832 – “That’s what comes of listening to pollsters and focus groups!!” Were you refering to Tory, Labour or both? It’s my impression that the Tory approach is heavily dominated by the media agenda, which is why they have got into a terrible contradiction over their fiscal policies. A great example is tonights briefing that they will look at same sex marriages – its clearly not something they believe in but is a response to the Grayling gaffe. Labour are also no angels here, which explains why we are having the most important election in over a decade with no one talking about the biggest issue facing the country.

  40. Eoin Clarke

    Do you have a view (silly question!) on the story in Mark Devenport’s blog?

    “Picking up on the deal in Fermanagh to back the independent unionist candidate Rodney Connor, Mr Robinson argued that although the DUP and the Conservatives and Unionists have already chosen their candidates in South Belfast there’s still time for a deal to try to regain the seat for unionism from the SDLP.

    No sooner had my programme finished than an e-mail dropped into my in-box from the leaders of the Orange Order and Royal Black preceptory in Sandy Row. It was a letter to Sir Reg Empey urging him to apply the Fermanagh model to South Belfast. The loyal orders went so far as to say that “we feel so strongly about this issue that we will direct our members and friends not to support any party that indicates they are not prepared to stand aside for an independent non-party candidate in South Belfast.”

  41. For the third a final time, I will wheel out the by now rather tiresome “concertina effect theory” explanation of recent polling numbers.

    1- Every time Tory lead stretches to 10%, Tory lead narrows to 5%.

    2 – Every time Tory lead narrows to 5%, Tory lead then extends to 10%.

    3 – The explanation for (1) and (2) above is:
    (a) the electorate does not want a Labour overall majority or Labour as the largest Party in a HP; and
    (b) the electorate does not want the Conservatives to secure an overall majority.

    Thank you. Please feel free to trash my only decent theory so far ;)

    3 –

  42. The polls are largely pointless as an indicator until after the debate this week and we can see what, if any, impact it has.

  43. The YouGov version of the supplementary questions shows Brown leading all categories of performance over the first week. Surely some mistake? Or are the numbers wrong in the report above?

    [Numbers are wrong on the website, the ones above are correct – AW]

  44. @Howard
    “I’d say that is a very courageous prediction Joseph.”

    All political predictions are courageous, or foolhardy, or indicative of personal expectations, but most of all hostage to fortune. Not long ago we had some predictions of a state of emergency or GB bottling it and going for June and yet here we are. Personally I prefer to consider all possible scenarios and all their possible likely consequences. That’s the way to be never disappointed. :-)

  45. @neil A – I keep forgetting that you are a Tory, which must be a compliment about the quality of your posts here. If I ever need to be nicked, I’ll look for a copper like you – a fascist with a heart.
    [Too old to figure out the smiley signs I’m afraid].

  46. Amber’s crystal ball says the current CON lead is 4%.

    I said last week that it was 4/5/6 not the 8/9/10 we were seeing from the polls. I am now ceasing to MoE my crystal ball ;-)

    I am now firmly declaring 4 points. The polls can get in line with me; I’m not moving my result around every day :-)

  47. @oldnat,

    I live in that constituency

    It has been calculated at the most mixed postcode in Ireland.

    Ispend 75% of my week of university grounds.

    We have elected Europe’s first ever Chinese politician.

    It would fill me with tremdous sadness if David Cameron gerrymanders my constituency.

    Thatcher, Major, Churchill would never ever have cintemplated it (Disraeli might have).

    It would be a personally very sad day.

  48. YouGov has Brown in the lead on performance during the campaign. Surely some mistake?

    Check out the page for today’s poll at their site.

  49. @Eoin,

    Thanks! I am trying :-).

    To be honest, I have a feeling there will be a result either way. I think the electorate will rule out a hung parliament as we get closer (history tells us this does happen).
    Therefore I am waiting for a decisive swing, but it doesn’t seem to be quite happening for the Tories yet. i.e. 40%+


  50. YG looked to have the Conservatives too high – now they may have them slightly too low (but that’s why we have MOE)

    As for Lab/Con polling 68% – hardly surprising. Take a look at the last 2 Euro Election results to see that the ‘major parties’ can attract a lot less votes than that!

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