All over. We should have similar quick reaction polls from ComRes and YouGov, and live results from Angus Reid. For the last debate there was also a Sky News poll, which I am somewhat dubious about (the panel looks like it was specifically recruited, so was basically open access). I’ll add the results here as they come in.


108 Responses to “Reactions to the Second Debate”

1 2 3
  1. @neil A

    “I don’t think many people here expected Cameron to win. Not out in the open at least…”

    He DIDN’T according the COMRES… ;-)

  2. Brown started off quite strong and authoritative, but fell away quite badly. From a purely debating point of view, the other two were quite equal, it seemed. As for closing comments, Nick was easily the most sincere.

    Brown fake smiles too much – it doesn’t look right.

  3. The fact it was so close has to be a victory for Brown.

  4. I’m surprised so many people seem to think Cameron won that debate, genuinely surprised. He was more prominent than last time for sure, but he spent too much time promoting his party and worrying about the Conservatives image. I only hope that, heaven forbid, he was prime minister he would show the same passion with our welfare as he did with complaining about Labours leaflets.

  5. @TONY MCHOBBS – “Brown fake smiles too much – it doesn’t look right.”
    I actually agree. I like the grumpy old man air about Brown.
    Much prefer to have a grumpy old man in charge of the country than a bright-eyed bushy-tailed young thing.
    IMHO

  6. I agree it was fairly poorly moderated.

  7. Ah yes, exactly where did the moderator’s question to Clegg about a newspaper headline come from? What the hell was that about?

  8. I would give Tories a piece of advice but they will ignore I know.

    THe last thing tactically you want to do, is win the second debate. It is the worse debate of all to win.

    1 is good you get your surge! Makes you feel all warm

    2 is bad you get a stone of weight on your shoulder! MAkes you feel burdened

    3 is best it lines the road to polling dat with gold bricks…

    But then Michael Gove and Georgie boy are doing their thing.

  9. I love how sky news are totally ignoring the ComRes figures…

  10. @Eoin

    Don’t agree with your assessment of the political beneficiary being the one who most exceeds expectations. If tomorrow’s headlines are “Cameron wins second debate” then he’ll be the beneficiary. We won’t see headlines saying “Brown third but much improved on last week”.

    Perhaps you’d be right for the first debate but the rules changed after that.

  11. Some more COMRES info, nicked from the Grauniad:

    “Here are the voting intentions of those who saw the debate.

    Conservatives: 35% (down 1 from last week’s figures for viewers who saw the first debate)
    Lib Dems: 36% (up 1)
    Labour: 24%

    ComRes also asked who gave the most honest answers. Clegg won. Here are the figures.

    Clegg: 43%
    Cameron: 29%
    Brown: 23%

    And ComRes also asked who exceeded expectations. Brown won on that count.

    Brown: 47%
    Cameron: 27%
    Clegg: 21%”

  12. @leslie

    In the beautifully irony with which god provides us, please see the comment below your own.

  13. @ ROLAND

    We missed you while you were away

    – DC was sure footed tonight. His closing speech was impressive. I loved his, “I agree with Gordon” quip. DC definitely most entertaining :-)

    Cameron on Trident: You can’t pull a nuclear deterrent out of – ahem – thin air.

    Cameron on Expenses: Drop the ‘holier than thou’, Nick, nobody came out of the expenses thing clean.

    Cameron on pensioners’ free eye tests & prescriptions: It may not be in our manifesto by I am saying here & now, we are keeping them.

    Top stuff, in the room reaction, no script following. Very sure footed.

  14. Pretty close. Gordon came across a bit angry. Dave was better but I couldn’t look at him without thinking of that poster that was going around Twitter. Clegg was solid but I think his policies are quite polarising in either a love/hate kind of way.

  15. @Eoin

    “THe last thing tactically you want to do, is win the second debate. It is the worse debate of all to win.”

    aaarrrggghhh- I was just about to write that :-)

    Cameron now raised the bar for himself for the third debate (and the only one that really counts); Clegg will have lowered expectations a little to a more realistic- but still high level; Brown was better tonight and will be better again on home turf next week.

    PS Tom Bradby just said “I put Clegg last” Someone needs to show him the business end of a two-by-four as Toby said !

  16. Test: Nuclear deterrent

  17. @EOIN- “I would give Tories a piece of advice but they will ignore I know. The last thing tactically you want to do, is win the second debate. It is the worse debate of all to win.”
    Not much use giving them this advice AFTER the second debate, is it?
    They won’t ask you for advice ever again now.

  18. How has Gordon Brown come to have this title of a “safe pair of hands” exactly? Him and Labour have had a lot of time already and dropped the ball/punched the ball clean into their own net numerous times, so I’m just wondering how he’s come about this absurd new title. He’s about as safe as David James, isn’t he? A premiership star, for sure…but no safe pair of hands.

  19. According to the Angus Ried website, Nick Clegg won again, DC second and GB third.

    I doubt GB would ever win – if it was a debate regarding the colour of grass, and GB said it was green, DC said it was pink and NC said it was blue, I’m sure GB would still come third.

  20. @Eoin

    Wrote my comment after YouGov but before ComRes. But ComRes seems to show that neither greatly exceeding expectations by Brown not being seen as least honest affected Labour’s poll ratings in the slightest, so where’s the irony?

    I am still predicting little or no change to the voting intention polls this time tomorrow compared to last night.

  21. God, the BRAYING on Ch4 news undoing all the good work on yaboo politics. No wonder the public hate MPs

  22. Close between Cameron and Clegg, but think Cameron edged it. Brown was his usual un-inspiring self. Clegg was spot on with the voting system in which it needs a dramatic change. A country should NOT have a PM that was only voted in for by 22% of the vote. There is a major need for a voting system that is more democratic and every vote counts. The americans have it right with a straight every vote counts democratic voting system with non of this constituency nonsense.

  23. @TONY MCHOBBS – “He’s about as safe as David James, isn’t he? A premiership star, for sure…but no safe pair of hands.”
    David James holds the Premier League record for most clean sheets apparently.

  24. Angus Reid poll NC 35 DC 33 GB 23

  25. @ANDREW HOLDEN – “I doubt GB would ever win – if it was a debate regarding the colour of grass, and GB said it was green, DC said it was pink and NC said it was blue, I’m sure GB would still come third.”
    LOL. My thoughts exactly

  26. @Andrew Holden

    “I doubt GB would ever win – if it was a debate regarding the colour of grass, and GB said it was green, DC said it was pink and NC said it was blue, I’m sure GB would still come third.”

    Absolutely- I am flabbergasted (in a good way) to see the 2,000 or so punters at ITN/CR putting him 30%= with Cameron

    Though I had him 10% clear of DC personally.

  27. The numbers are coming across mixed. I’ll want to see some more numbers…I saw it as a split decision between Clegg and Cameron, with Brown not coming across well.

    My guess is that this won’t push Clegg down, but it won’t give him another big boost. Brown did damage control, but that’s about all he managed. And Cameron wasn’t great, but it seems to have gone better for him than last time. I suspect the fact that there were punches going at Clegg kept him from another runaway evening.

  28. @Julian Gilbert – “David James holds the Premier League record for most clean sheets apparently.”

    David James has played vastly more games than most if not all goalies in the Premier League so even playing badly he will still have more clean sheets than nearly all of them.

  29. @Leslie

    “I am still predicting little or no change to the voting intention polls this time tomorrow compared to last night.”

    You mean yesterdays average of all polls 33-27-29?

    That would be excellent :-)

  30. It’s not really the debate reaction polls that interest me it’s the effect on the voting intention polls from tomorrow til the end of the week.

  31. Very interesting watching the ‘worm’ reaction live.

    It was positive virtually the whole time, when all 3 were speaking.

    The only time it went below neutral was when DC was spouting on about ‘the only way to bring real change was to vote Conservative.’

    The worm dived to negative !

  32. @ANDY WILLIAMS – “David James has played vastly more games than most if not all goalies in the Premier League so even playing badly he will still have more clean sheets than nearly all of them.”
    Hang on, isn’t there a fault in your logic here? Doesn’t that also mean he’s had to keep more potential goals out?
    (I might also be talking about GB here as well) ;)

  33. Good old Angus Reid panel – if it wasn’t for them, we think Gordon did quite well tonight.

    They are always ready with a poll to keep him humble ;-)

  34. I think that the only way to get any change is to vote Conservative. A hung parliament is going to get us a Gordon Brown led coalition with the Lib Dems. Do you really think that once he gets back in charge that he will let go of it? That’ll be it, 5 more years thanks very much. And why is Chris Huhne so utterly repellent

  35. Make it easy for you. We’ll say he’s played 1000 and kept 300 clean sheets.

    Then a goalie that’s playe 100 and kept 100 clean sheets.

    By your logic James is the better keeper but no-one who knows about football will say he is.

    He’s kept more Premiership clean sheets than Pepe Reina but he’s played about 3-4 times more games and only a deranged idiot (or Gordon Brown) would say James is better.

  36. The leadership debates should be informative, helping the entire voting public in the deliberations they make up to the day of the election. The effect of these instant polls is not a helpful developement in this process, and it is almost as if they are designed to close the debate prematurely by declaring a victor.

    The fact that the sample may be well chosen and representative of the public as a whole, is not the point. It is that their decision can be taken as a cue to curtail further consideration.

    An unhealthy way to close down debate by prematurely declaring a victor. A snap descision, which of itself is no more helpful than the verdict given by ‘spin alley’.

    I hope this opinion is not interpreted as an attack on pollsters. It is just that in this particular circumstance we should question whether these polls might have a deliterious effect on the way each person is ‘allowed’ to think, reflect, and make up his or her individual mind.

  37. Privately, how will the parties be taking it inside HQ?

    Labour will be delighted. Tonight they could have sunk like a stone, once and for all, with voting intention polls going down further. They are never going to “win” the debates – so merely keeping in touch, which they did tonight, will be enough. They’ll also be happy that it wasn’t a clear win for Cameron.

    The Tories will have mixed feelings, but probably feel a bit flat. Yes, they’ll be relieved that Clagg didn’t run away with it AGAIN, and therefore won’t dread the third debate, but will it be enough to turn around popular sentiment enough to put them back where they were a fortnight ago? Unlikely. They were hoping for a big win and didn’t get it.

    As for the Lib Dems, I suspect they’ll be happy to come out of a bruising encounter without having taken a knockout punch. Brown landed some heavy blows (sorry) and Clegg looked most unhappy under pressure, but he survived, and held his own with the others; ultimately, it’s another opportunity to put himself at the table on equal footing with the others, which can only help their cause. Obviously they will have hoped that it could be a repeat of last week, so they’ll probably feel a little deflated, but overall they should be happy enough.

  38. @ANDY WILLIAMS – “… only a deranged idiot (or Gordon Brown)…”
    Oops. That hurts. Although calling me AND Gordon Brown deranged idiots puts me in good company, I think.
    Love him or hate him, GB rose to the highest (uninherited) position in the country.
    And you have achieved what exactly…?

  39. The key point in the debate, for me, was the exchange on the banking system. I thought Clegg’s insistence on splitting retail and investment banking came over strong, and the other two failing to even address the issue looked evasive. I suspect this may strike a chord with others.

    Overall, I’d mark it the same as last week: Clegg top, then Brown, then Cameron. However, since this order aligns with my own political preference, I’m fully prepared (unlike others who shall be nameless) to accept I may be merely seeing what I want to see.

  40. Times: With more than 3,000 votes cast, our instant poll also gives it to Clegg, by about 50 per cent to Cameron’s 33 and 17 for Brown.

  41. @Julian – a lot more than him in life. An awful lot more and if Iwas list it you’d accuse me of lying.

    But I’ll give you a clue for starters – career soldier.

  42. Have I got this right?

    Yougov: CAM 36, CLG 32, BRN 29 (Cameron 4pt lead)
    ComRes: CAM 30, CLG 33, BRN 30 (Clegg 3pt lead)
    AnReid: CAM 33, CLG 34, BRN 22 (Clegg 1pt lead)

    Note: Angus Reid figures not yet finalised

  43. Valentine – open access, self-selected voodoo poll. The only legitimate polls tonight will be the Angus Reid, ComRes and YouGov ones. There may be stuff from Populus and ICM tomorrow.

  44. @ Eoghan:
    Agreed. I suspect that despite his improvement on last week Cameron disappointed many Tories with his failure to deliver any knockout blows.

    Big Society was again conspicuous in its absence – mentioned once by DC in closing remarks? I thought it was supposed to be his “big idea”.

  45. @ANDY WILLIAMS
    I don’t suppose the training for a career soldier includes being polite to people you don’t agree with ;)
    But to get back to the flaw in your logic. You said;
    “Make it easy for you. We’ll say he’s played 1000 and kept 300 clean sheets. Then a goalie that’s played 100 and kept 100 clean sheets. etc”
    If keeping a clean sheet is difficult (it is) then to play more games and keep a high percentage of them as clean sheets means you must be a good goalie.
    Or is that deranged idiots logic?

  46. Guys there is something freaky here…

    an Owain, Eoghan, and an Eoin?

  47. @ Martyn / All

    Can someone please clarify if the votes in Martyn’s summary are for who won the debate or are they the daily polls of voting intentions ? Thanks

  48. @ Julian – Love him or hate him, GB rose to the highest (uninherited) position in the country.

    but GB’s position WAS inherited, the british people elected Blair PM, GB inherited the title from him

  49. Looking at the ITV debate special, one woman just said something along the lines of “Clegg wants to get rid of the nuclear deterrent” Er, is this true? I thought LD policy was to not upgrade/renew/whatever Trident but keep the nukes. Is my understanding wrong?

  50. @ SEVEREDSOLO – “…but GB’s position WAS inherited, the british people elected Blair PM, GB inherited the title from him”
    Nope. He was elected. We don’t have a presidential system in the UK.

1 2 3