There are more details of the YouGov poll in the Sun here. The topline figures show Clegg winning easily, 51% thought he performed the best compared to 29% for Cameron and 19% for Brown. Looking at the other questions Clegg was least likely to be seen as evasive by a mile – 48% thought Brown was most evasive, 44% Cameron and only 4% Clegg.

Clegg also gained on Best Prime Minister. YouGov asked it before and after the debate – before Cameron led by 43% to Brown’s 31% and Clegg’s 11%. After the debate Clegg rose to 12%, with Brown dropping 2 to 29% and Cameron dropping 4 to 39%.

While Clegg gained the most all three leaders were enhanced by the debate. YouGov asked the same people before and after the debate how much confidence they had in the leaders to take the right decisions for the country. Prior to the debate 50% had some or a lot of confidence in Cameron, this rose to 54% after the debate. Brown’s figure rose by a similar amount, from 42% to 47%. Clegg’s rating rocketed, from 45% to 74% (though before you run away with yourselves, this is mostly people saying they have “some confidence”. Both before and after the debate Cameron had the highest figures for “a lot of confidence”)

The final figures in Angus Reid‘s poll were Clegg 48%, Cameron 20%, Brown 18%. Their additional questions were of the “Does this make you more or less likely to vote for party X” which I dislike so much! As usual, they show lots of people saying they are more likely to do something they were going to do anyway, and lots of people saying they are less likely to do something they weren’t doing in the first place. Trawling through the cross breaks though they look positive for the Lib Dems – 18% of Labour supporters and 23% of Conservatives supporters said the debate made them more likely to vote Lib Dem. David Cameron managed to appeal more to Labour voters – 9% of them said the debate made them more likely to vote Tory, compared to only 3% of Lib Dem supporters. Brown’s performance appealled more to Lib Dems – 12% said the debate had made them more likely to vote Labour, compared to 6% of Tory supporters.

As ever, remember that “more likely” doesn’t actually equate to switching, it’s often just used as a way of expressing a positive or negative opinion (put it this way – only 3% of Labour voters said the debate made them less likely to vote Labour, but 18% said it made them more likely to vote Lib Dem. In reality, you only have one vote and it’s a zero sum game).

Populus‘s tables are here. Their topline figures have Clegg winning by 61% to Cameron’s 23% and Brown’s 17%. They also asked a direct “who came second” question, which showed Cameron in second place… followed by Clegg (that isn’t actually as bonkers as it sounds, it’s because the overwhelming majority of people who put Brown or Cameron first put Clegg second, while Clegg’s supporters tended to put Cameron in second place.) 53% of people think Gordon Brown did worst.

Asked about each issue debated, Clegg was seen to have won on nearly all of them – the exceptions being NHS and policing, where Cameron was seen as most impressive. Brown did not come top on any issue. Populus too had a best PM question, and it showed Nick Clegg coming top with 43% to Cameron’s 35% and Brown’s 22% (the reasons for the difference from YouGov’s question are probably down to a different question – who would you most like to see as PM, as opposed to best PM, and the lack of a don’t know or none of them option).

Finally Populus asked a series of leader characteristic questions. Cameron led on being seen as strong and having what it takes to be PM, Brown led on knowing how to keep the economy strong, Clegg led on being in touch, changing the country for the better, having clear ideas and by a mile on being seen as likeable. Most the reason was that Conservative and Labour supporters were willing to be positive about Clegg, but not about the leader of the opposite party (respondents were allowed to tick answers for as many of the leaders as they liked).

I can’t find the full ComRes results online anywhere yet.

There were also various voodoo poll on websites. Open access, unweighted polls however larger are worthless. I would advise similar caution with the Sky News “poll” – people had to register before hand to take part and it had some attempt at balance, but given anyone could register and take part (and it was obvious what they were registering too take part in), it would have been very vulnerable to entryism and deliberate attempts to skew. Note the noticably higher ratings for Gordon Brown there.

Meanwhile, there are lots of new contributers here after last night. Welcome – but please read the comments policy before contributing. This is not a forum for political argument or discussion, it’s not really to say who you thought won the debate, it’s about public opinion as a whole and non-partisan discussion about it. I really don’t welcome people who turn up just to criticise one party or sing the praises of another.


355 Responses to “More on the post-debate polls”

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  1. @SueMarsh

    “A new day has dawned has it not?”


    Ah! You should see the beatific smile on my face.

  2. A lot of predictions – not much rationalisation. Anyone can predict and even may get lucky and be right. What’s interesting is saying what got you to predict what you do.

    Presumably LibDems have to rise 3-6 points on the back of last night’s performance. Given the LibDem message, at the expense of Labour more than the Tories.

  3. I confess tht I’m more than a bit confused with the polls following yesterdays “debate”
    While all seemed to say that Nick Clegg had the best show Sky for one put Gordon Brown above Dave Cameron——this surely is a disaster for the “prime minister in waiting”

  4. @ Rob Sheffield

    “You are completely ignoring anti-Tory tactical voting though- wonder why”

    My post was based on facts and maths. It is logic, not opinion. It did NOT include many ‘factors’ some pollsters include and other pollsters dispute such as Con marginal effect, under-estimation of Con, ‘Shy Tories’ to name but a few. Since it was based on the actual GE2005 figures then it did include all ‘Tactical Votiing’ that happened at the last election, which I agree in GE2005 was probably ‘anti-tory tactical voting’. It was included because it was a fact. It actually happened.

    My post was to made to correct a statement about what the current poll percentages would mean in the terms of the Con/LibDem and the Lab/LibDem marginals. My figures showed that the statement was mathematically incorrect and illogical. It does not matter mathematically what causes the rise or fall in the relative % figure for a party. At the GE2005 the difference between the Con% and the LibDem% was 33 – 23 = 10. Provided Con % in a seat remains more than 10% above the LibDems, then logically no Con seats should be lost. At GE2005 the difference between the Lab and LibDem %s was 35 – 23 = 12. Any difference between Lab and LibDems which is less than 12 means a swing to LibDems. Currently the difference on this poll is 28 – 24 = 4. That already represents a 4% swing in Lab/LibDem marginals. That is fact, logic and not opinion.

    My post was completely non-partisan..

  5. Poll Alert. ….the real statistical story.. the last seven opinion polls show the following declining Con lead over Lab….

    9%
    6%
    5%
    5%
    4%
    3%
    3%

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