There is a BPIX poll in tomorrow’s Mail on Sunday which has topline figures of CON 31%(-7), LAB 28%(-3), LDEM 32%(+12). That’s the biggest drop for Conservatives so far, and the biggest surge for the Lib Dems – and it puts the Liberal Democrats up in first place. The Lib Dems were in equal first place in a poll back in 2003, but I think you need to go back to around 1982 to find polls with them (or their predecessor parties) consistently in first place (Update – Tom in the comments has flagged up one poll from 1985 that had the Alliance ahead)

As with ComRes today and YouGov yesterday, all three parties are within 4 or 5 points of each other, so realistically if the polls remain like this it shouldn’t be a surprise to see polls with any of the three parties in the lead.

There is also a OnePoll survey in the People, that shows CON 27%, LAB 23%, LDEM 33%. I have still not confirmed whether these polls have any proper attempt at sampling or political weighting, and would treat it with great scepticism.

There is at least YouGov still to come tonight.

73 Responses to “BPIX put Lib Dems in the lead”

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  1. Another Matt lol I’ll have to call myself matt2 from now on.

  2. Oh joy of joys. Living in South Shropshire it is so nice to see the Tories looking so deflated. Thank goodness the British public are seeing ‘Dave’ as he really is; a toff in mufti.


  4. Matt,

    I think the idea of the LibDems getting around 100 seats is (dare I say it) conservative at the moment. If that happens, everything will depend on how the other two do respective to each other – well, duh. However, to use football parlance, Cameron will have the draw – in other words if it is close between Labour and the Conservatives, then Cameron will be PM – Labour will need to beat the Cons convincingly, by say 50 odd seats, for Brown to stay on.

    Either way, with 100 seats to play with Clegg will have ample power to dictate stringent terms with whoever is PM, and electoral reform will be top of the list.

    All IMHO, needless to say.

  5. A 6% swing from CON to LD takes out Liam Fox – see .

    Am I right in thinking that Ashcroft/Unison were focussing on the CON/LAB marginals and ignoring the CON/LD and LAB/LD marginals?

  6. Matt and Bill Roy
    Were those serious points?

    All the reforms – they are all going to take place and within two years or shorter. That is what the public wants not the Big Society or any other ……..

    It will be interesting to see answers to subsidiary questions if they were posed, on that subject..

  7. “Were those serious points?”

    Absolutely. Why would the Lib Dems stand for PR, and necessarily opt for the party in 2nd or 3rd place?

  8. “Am I right in thinking that Ashcroft/Unison were focussing on the CON/LAB marginals and ignoring the CON/LD and LAB/LD marginals?”

    There’s been no sign of it being spent here in Bath. So far I’ve had no Tory visits or literature through the door.

  9. One issue the general public don’t really get is that with those poll results the Lib Dems would have far fewer MP’s than either Lab or Con. I am not sure how yu work out the potential number of seats from those figures, I am guessing by swing with some regional weighting.

    If I remember the 80’s correctly the Alliance got a lot of votes but few MP’s which left voters rather disillusioned.

  10. @Geraint
    “Cameron needs to hammer a “Vote Clegg get Brown” message and hammer it hard”
    I couldn’t agree more. Whilst I have nothing against Nick Clegg at all, he seems a very nice chap and certainly performed well, I think what we are witnessing is why referenda are a bad idea. People are expressing voting preference on the basis of one appearance of 90 minutes duration. This is not the X Factor! Nor is a presidency. Clegg has a team totally inexperienced and worse, idealistic. I wonder how popular he will be when all the drug dealers & burglars are not sent to prison. Or when all the illegal immigrants have been given their amnesty.
    It looks like a hung parliament certainty now, which will mean another 5 years of Brown.
    Vote in haste, repent at leisure

  11. I think this is officially the greatest day of my life. The Lib Dems in the lead in an opinion poll 2.5 weeks out from a general election, Manchester United winning at Eastlands with a last-gasp goal AND Chelsea losing to Tottenham…

    OK maybe the day I got married was a little better.

    But still this seems extraordinary. Not living in the UK any longer, this seems just surreal reading about it online. It could of course be short-lived, but just remember that result we always see for the LDs in those “If you thought they could win” polls. As high as 50%…

  12. Jamie,

    I can see at least three outcomes where we don’t get PR:

    Outcome 1- Labour are the largest party in a hung parliament and negotiate the Lib Dems down to AV.

    Outcome 2- The Tories are the largest party in a hung parliament and force a second election.

    Outcome 3- The Lib Dems manage to negotiate a referendum on PR and it gets rejected by the public.

  13. By the way everyone, Labour and the Libs have been in a coalition government before: the Scottish Executive, 1999-2007. I think Labour benefited a lot more out of the partnership than the Lib Dems, who have become “also-rans” in Scottish politics.

    If Clegg were to look to the northern experience for tips, he’d look for a pact with the highest bidder rather than a coalition. Especially when British Labour and the Conservatives are so tired.

  14. Jamie

    “Does anybody see any outcomes where we are still using FPTP next time around?”


    SNP get 30 seats and secede. Con/UKIP Government leaves EU without a referendum.

  15. I htink the public will back PR in a referndum. FPTP is very easy to attack indeed. I suspect only a Tory majority or minority govenrment will avert AV or PR.

  16. I think we all need to calm down a bit – both those of us who are pleased about the LibDem surge, and those who find it alarming abd are looking for ways our chaps can counter it. Remember, this site is supposed to be about cold analysis of the figures gained through polling. Looking at all the figures in all the polls conducted since last Thursday calmly, we are clearly in a revolutionary and unprecedented situation within a General Election campaign period. It seems both the Tories and LibDems need about 40% to get an absolute majority. Although for Clegg it is “Death or Glory” because of the electoral system. If he gets 33% or less his party will end up third in the Commons, between 38% and 40% largest party, above that an overall LibDem majority. Both the media and pundits are still talking as if only Brown or Cameron could be PM. However, given the directional momentum in the polls, a landslide movement to the LibDems cannot be ruled out. I doubt it will happen, I expect as it is now is as it will be on polling day – but if Clegg keeps a cool head under fire from the other two, who knows – he might bandwagon a landslide to power? Perhaps Cable will be Chancellor after all!!!

  17. @Roger Mexico
    “””Actually the position on who becomes PM in a hung Parliament is pretty clear. The Queen is supposed to invite the leader of the largest Party (ie most MPs) to form a government. Only if the first invitee fails does HM then ask the leader of the next largest Party.”””

    The correct position in a hung parliament is that the incumbent Prime Minister has first go if he so wishes. Brown has the right to seek a confidence vote in the House of Commons regardless of the result of the election, even if Labour returned 4 MPs :) . The interesting question is what Brown chooses to do if the Conservatives are the largest party. If Labour are the largest party I fully expect him to submit a radical progressive Queen’s speech to Parliament and invite the Lib Dems to side with the Tories and throw it out. If Labour are only just behind the Tories say 20 seats or less he may be tempted to do the same, controversial as it may be. I dont think people appreciate how difficult Nick Clegg’s position potentially is. If any one is interested the historical precedent is Baldwin in 1924 (Yeap far back!) when he got the liberals to vote with labour against his own Queen’s speech and then skewered them for putting Labour into government. (Although then the Tories were the largest party)

  18. Thank you for the reply, RogerH.

  19. The polling companies are completely discreting themselves at the moment – these polls are nonsense and need to be looked at for what they are worth this week !

    I have said way back, over two years ago that Labour would be destroyed in this election with the Liberals in 2nd place, leading to another breakaway party from Labour like to SDP after the election.

    Make no mistake – the final outcome of the election will be a substantial Tory win and a substantial Labour defeat – with the Liberals with about the same amount of seats, but a slightly higher percentage – don’t forget the last day swing to the Conservatives against Neil Kinnock in 1992 !

    The country still knows that on polling day the Liberals cannot oust Labour.

  20. Will be a lot of RED faces – especially among pollsters – when the Tories win with a clear majority on May 7th

  21. Mike R..

    Whilst I agree 100% you cannot post stuff like that on here or you’ll get slagged off and banned….

    But you are right i believe and well done for saying it..

  22. Mike R.

    Partisan rant unworthy of this site.

  23. Martyn asked “Am I right in thinking that Ashcroft/Unison were focussing on the CON/LAB marginals and ignoring the CON/LD and LAB/LD marginals?”

    I live in virtually the last house in Twickenham, looking at Richmond Park. So far we have had 6 leaflet drops from Ashcroft’s young man on his electric trolley. Have they all gone up in smoke?

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