ComRes meanwhile have the result as 33% thinking Clegg won, and Cameron and Brown in equal second place on 30%. So Clegg ahead rather than Cameron, and a closer spread between the three party leaders than with YouGov’s figures. Angus Reid’s current figures also have Clegg ahead of Cameron by much the same margin (35% to 33% as I type, but they are not final figures), but have a much lower rating for Brown.

We have different polls calling different winners, but what is very clear is that Nick Clegg has not been the same sort of runaway winner with the public that he was in the first debate. This was a much closer run thing.

UPDATE: Since they are already cropping up in the comments, these three are the only legitimate instant polls of the debate I am aware of (though other companies may well deliver figures tomorrow morning). Other things, like the Channel 4 website poll, will be open access voodoo polls that will not be representative of wider public opinion… even if you prefer the result.

UPDATE2:
The final Angus Reid figures are Clegg 33%, Cameron 32%, Brown 23%


372 Responses to “…but ComRes have Clegg ahead”

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  1. Cameron pleasantly surprised me. Fewer buzzwords. Not surprised he is performing respectably. Steady the ship. A runaway Clegg victory allied with repulsion to the Mail’s excesses today could have been fatal to his chances.

    Now he just has to work out that not increasing NI does not take money out of the economy – it redistributes on the assumption that government will spend it better, the justification for all taxation. That mean providing things that can only be done by the state, or useful things that the state does better. But taxation is not an end in itself.

  2. Do the leaders debates actually divert debate away from the issues?

    Most of the talk ends up being about the presentation of the debates, rather than the content of what was said and how it affects us.

  3. I wonder how the leaflets/lie dispute will go.

    The tories will be out in force trying to find evidence that GB authorised them, and if they find even a sniff of proof they thier tame newspapers will spread it all over the front pages if the tratment of NC today is anything to go by.

    This will then be picked up by the TV and radio and could potentially be the banana skin that so many have been talking about.

  4. frankly, park the partisan politics…. from DUBLIN same debate…A Re-Run

    Clegg..punchy effective if a tad student politics

    Brown…serioius passionate convincing if a tad dour

    Cameron…flapping, froth with no serious message

  5. I think this might help Labour close a little – if people voted how the debate reaction has come out – around 30 – 30 – 30 – then Labour would be very happy.

    Good economic figures are vital for Labour tomorrow though. They need a positive week of publicity.

  6. Oh Murdoch and friends…how i despise em! Oh dear on sky news bias.

    Atleast newsnight have called it as pretty even with momentum still with clegg.

  7. Sky news let themselves down.

    On balance Brown benefitted from that.

    You do not drag up media speculation form the Murdoch press and use the moderator to ask it.

    You do not have a platform full of red and blue but no yellow.

    If I was a Lib which I will never EVER be, I would be outraged.

    A small point for LAbour to gripe about is that the audience seemed either Lib or Tory. But I suppose their are not many reds down that neck of the words.

    On a persoanl note, I was very upset that a question as elongated as that attack on the Catholic Church was aired by Rupert Murdoch press. I felt very sorry for all three leaders that they had to lower themsleves to answer it.

  8. Neil A –

    I’m afraid I disagree. People weren’t looking for a “messiah” despite what the papers wanted to say. It’s not like there were lots of people with deep convictions of voting for DC who watched last week and saw angels descending from the realms of glory. Clearly what happened was a soft Tory and Lab. vote was convinced that there was a third option – it is now imperative for DC (in particular I’d say) to perform and say “hey, those things that made you uncertain about me before, they don’t actually apply, plus I have better policies.”

    You can argue that DC seized his chance on Europe to do the latter, but he didn’t do the former, and I still maintain the balls in his court until he knocks it back over the net.

  9. The first half was very flat and I expect any non-politics nerds would have turned off by 8.30

    The rest was fairly even but I think the “lying leaflets” will be the story here: Alex Salmond was saying the same claims are made in leaflets in Brown’s own constituency and that if you can’t trust him to tell the truth about bus passes for pensioners what can you trust him about. It rings true.

    I think it is only the Tories fear of being seen as negative that stops them going after Brown as being a liar. I suspect if the polls don’t turn sharply in the next 24 hours things will get nasty and personal at the weekend.

    I also think the sight of all those politicians spinning/lying afterwards was frankly offputting, a bit like looking at someone’s entrails while being asked to order the main course.

  10. dead heat in my eyes tonight with the current figures for the polls so far it’s:

    cameron 33%
    clegg 33%
    brown 27%
    don’t know 7%

    a good improvement from cameron this week around 8% better than last week in the debate figures. brown has moved up as well by 8%, clegg is down by around 13%, don’t knows down by 3%.

  11. I’m from the old school . There is an effect which we call “the dead Russian” (aka late surge). Because of political balance requirements LDs (and formerly Liberals) got more media coverage and their poll ratings rose. I think the LDs started from a slightly higher base this time round and this time they have been the story of the election so far. So I am going to stick my neck out and say that the worst they can do is 28% of the vote.

  12. Though Brown missed a trick on the leaflet debate.

    Instead of denying he had anything to do with the leaflets he should just have challenged Cameron back to withdraw and change his manifesto to include free eye tests and prescription charges.

  13. @Eoin

    “A small point for LAbour to gripe about is that the audience seemed either Lib or Tory. But I suppose their are not many reds down that neck of the words.”

    Bristol is my home town- always been a bellwether city: It has
    6 seats BW BS BE BNW FBS KW and currently five are red one is yellow and 1 is blue !!!!

  14. @Liam. Clegg a career politician. How could any LD be a career politician. Until now it was probably won of the least secure jobs ever. A career politician would have swallowed his/her principles and got a safe seat with either Lab or Con.

  15. Have to agree with Donald Pond – a lot of unpleasant bickering afterwards with interviewing politicians – esp Michael Gove & Huhne. Now that was nauseating…so I turned it off!

  16. Ha ha- I meant FOUR are red…..

  17. If that debate is anything to go by, a hung election would appear a near certainty.

    Don’t listen to DC about the dangers of a hung parliament. Whilst it would require some changes to made to the structure of political decision making, coaltions of parties run many other countries with great success all over the world

  18. I thought Cameron was a bit weak, Clegg even weaker and Brown just going through the motions. He looks and acts like a loser, but neither of the others looks a winner to me. Not yet anyway.

    I estimate polls at something like 35 Cons, 30 LD and 25 labour.

    Probably wishful thinking though. I think a small Con overall majority with LD as opposition to keep them honest., would be the best outcome.

  19. I think Brown scored well on content. He talked about the issues affecting people now, even if the answer being given did not directly relate to the question asked.

    I though the Sky coverage was ok, but the questions could have been better. I thought the question about the Popes visit, was a waste of about 5 mins of debating time. Which politician was going to answer that they were going to ban the Pope from entering the country because of his expressed views.

  20. Surely the colours were the Union Jack? I didn’t think of them any other way.

    Because Clegg didn’t bomb and they were all roughly equal I expect the Labour voting intention share to hold steady, and possibly nudge up, Conservatives to hold steady, and LibDems to nudge up.

    As for Murdoch, it’s high time this country despatched his influence. If he has backed the non-winner it will be a great thing for democracy.

  21. If Cameron and Brown improved – which they did – then how can the Lib Dems GAIN in the polls? It simply defies logic.

    People getting carried away with all this again – I thought Clegg was full of flim flam tonight about the “old parties”, and his detail was lacking.

    In fact, I thought Brown was better than Clegg tonight.

    This increasingly absurd Clegg bubble will go pop – with a very loud bang – very soon.

  22. A very good debate-interesting-watchable.

    All three more relaxed.

    No killer blows-two clangers-NC calling the Poles “nutters”, and the Labour Leaflets.

    DC shaded it from GB for me .

    DC-got it right at last
    GB-more natural than last week.

    NC -a liitle aggressive?-a bit holier than thou?-a prime minister??

  23. More and more I feel this election was the Conservative party’s last chance to reach beyond their core. I think they’ve failed badly but tonight’s performance will certainly re-inforce their core.

    It is not good enough to bang on and on about “families doing the right thing” for example. Not all people are in warm, caring families; many people, in families or not, are unable to do “the right thing” for reasons other than being “welfare-benefit scroungers” as, thankfully only very occassionally, one or two people, even on this forum, have claimed.

    Life is more complex than that.

    I don’t see Cons going below 33 or above 35 on May 6th. The only question is how the Labour/Lib Dem votes split against them.

  24. Why was there a question about pensions in a foreign affairs debate?

  25. I heard on Twitter the Sky News poll was partly conducted during the summing up by Nick Clegg? How can a post event poll be conducted properly before the event has ended?

  26. @eoin…hmmm not sure I understand the catholic church point?….

    as a citezen of Irish Republic…i was ashamed by the queezy wishy washy response to the Popes visit. to UK..(pussyfooting on child abuse etc) ….until Brown unashamedly defended his party achievements on civil partnership…etc etc etc….

  27. I thought that following an improvement by DC and GB, Con and Lab will gain a small number of votes from the Lib Dems.

    I thought that at times NC looked very, very green. Well intentioned, but inexperienced. Is he the man for a difficult situation????

    I’ll go for the next few days being Con 36, Lab 30, LD 27

  28. I’ve heard a lot about Sky being biased, and although expecting to see it (read: Murdoch), never have, until tonight. Their coverage tonight has been shockingly biased in the tories favour! They’ve almost completely dismissed all the polls, bar Yougov.

    Anyway, there were really two questions that this debate needed to answer, and I feel it has.

    Can Cameron recover? I think not.
    Will the Lib Dem surge be sustained? I think so.

    BUT, my opinion is worth nothing. The polls will tell us the real answers, and I look forward to them!

    As a side note, I would say that I think the media are struggling to deal with the surge in Lib Dem support. They’re generally very very skeptical about it, and I think this will work to the LD’s favour. We’ve seen a lot of backlashing against the media in recent times, and I think this election could be the ultimate.

  29. “Though Brown missed a trick on the leaflet debate.

    Instead of denying he had anything to do with the leaflets he should just have challenged Cameron back to withdraw and change his manifesto to include free eye tests and prescription charges.”

    Or perhaps challenged Cameron on his own election leaflets claiming crime is up 41% when all the stats, including those released just today, say it’s going down.

    It was a bit rich from Cameron to be outraged over “Labour lies” when he’s doing the same thing he condemned Brown for.

  30. @ R HUCKLE

    “I thought the question about the Popes visit, was a waste of about 5 mins of debating time.”

    I disagree.

    The context-institutional child abuse- is of concern to many many people-as it would be in respect of any large organisation with responsibility for the care of minors.

    In that context, it was an excellent question to test the sensitivity of the three to the tensions between respect for faith, and concern for abused children.

    I thought all three were a credit to our country in the way they answered that question.

  31. RE: Election leaflets ‘gaffe’. We already had this with the NHS leaflets. Brown had ‘definitely’ approved them personally, the names were from confidential medical files etc. etc.

    Nothing in it for the Tories; in fact it put the NHS front & center – giving Labour a chance to talk about something they score highly on.

    Labour also scored well on state pension proposals. Any ‘scandal’ will simply give Labour press coverage for an issue that favours them.

  32. The interesting outcome is the poll which asked who was the most honest: Clegg won that by a large margin and that will count with some voters who just want an end to corruption in politics.

  33. When Cameron first became Conservative leader he and Osborne tried hard to secure defections from the Lib Dem Parliamentary party. Their primary targets were Nick Clegg and David Laws I seem to recall. It is to Nick Clegg’s credit that he did not succumb.

  34. @ Nick OK, I believe Kay Burley was pressing a Lib Dem person on Sky News saying that their poll was the only correct one showing they didn’t win the debate.

  35. Personally thought Brown was better than Clegg or Cameron, just more substance to his answers, but he’s never going to win these polls because too many people refuse to listen to anything he says.

  36. Any more voting intention this evening?

  37. @GarryK: Nick Clegg’s objective was, I’m sure, to lock in the converts from the first debate & to grab some more floaters. His performance was probably good enough to do the former, but I’m not sure about the second. We’ll see in the next polls.

  38. @LIAM. Your comments have thrown cretinism and low life, irrelevant partisan ranting at the face of the forum.

    Go on and air your views one of the halfwitt blogs run by certain down market newspapers papers please.

  39. when cameron was asked by Nick Clegg to name the ceiling figure on immigration he keeps talking about …… give us a figure dave just a figure..

    and he could not respond.. that was the moment Cameron lost an awful lot of votes.. ! and he know it… ! a lot of soft TORIES will look and see he is all talk and no action if he cannot at this stage put a figure on the ceiling… a thousand, a a million Nick asked.. no answer from Cameron ..

    says it all …

  40. Lots of posts stating peoples predetermined views!

    The POLLS show

    Cameron – much better but didn’t knock Clegg out.

    Brown – again improved but can’t get out of third place (this should hae been his best debate surely).

    Clegg – with expectations so high he was potentially on a loser but (just) survived as at least joint front runner.

  41. I thought Clegg did ok again but was never going to repeat last weeks efforts.

    Cameron looks weak at times and still very little substance for all his talk.

    Brown the winner for me , far more convincing tonight.

    Cameron for PM….get real.

  42. I apologise wholeheartedly if I sounded ranty.

  43. I missed the first half of the debate, but caught the second half on Radio 4.

    I thought GB did well.

    I note the polls have CON and LD pretty equal, and ahead of LAB.

    I still wonder if we are about to see “The Strange Death of Labour Britain.” If we get a continuing LD surge, then we could well see that once-in-a-lifetime event.

    This could turn out to be a very, VERY, interesting election!

  44. reporting widgit a little behind the actual results but as sky reports we have closed on Clegg 33, cam 32, brown 23
    Andy
    Angus Reid

  45. Clegg has the advantage of having, to English ears, the most normal voice of the three.

  46. TonyFisher: “The interesting outcome is the poll which asked who was the most honest: Clegg won that by a large margin and that will count with some voters who just want an end to corruption in politics.”

    I agree to some extent. But it was shown in defending unpopular policies as in immigration.

    So that may not help in long run.

    But, this time last year, no one predicted Cleggmania despite him coming top. My prediction is that Cameron has steadied his ship. Clegg should not be harmed, and may do very well with middle-class Labour voters. Immigration will play worse with working class Labour voters and all Conservatives.

  47. @ Pompey Observer

    Brown – again improved but can’t get out of third place (this should have been his best debate surely).

    To be honest I thought given that tonight would be about Europe (The Lisbon Treaty), Immigration and Afghanistan it was easily the toughest week for GB. He could have had a nightmare, but patently did not (in my humble opinion)

  48. Pompey O:

    “Clegg survived [just] as joint front-runner”.

    Classically bonkers

  49. I thought this was a more even outcome with GB possibly shading it (and I am not a Lab supporter) although the polls are suggesting otherwise

    The big question, not answered by DC or GB, is what do we do with c900000 ‘illegals’ already here for many years – NC seems to have a policy but GB & DC don’t appear to – unless I have missed something ?

  50. Nick Clegg did seem to hold his own tonight in the face of what were bound to be difficult questions on immigration and the EU. And the impormptu comments by the “moderator” Adam Boulton mention the headlines in the Telegraph.

    Brown did a lot better this time than last time. He did look strong.

    I don’t think Cameron did any better than last time.

    Lib Dems I think will increase in the poll over the weekend, as well as Labour, Cons will go down, all by a small amount each I think.

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