YouGov’s weekly poll for the Sunday Times has topline figures of CON 39%, LAB 41%, LDEM 10%. It’s the first time YouGov have shown Labour ahead since the conference season.

The normal caveats apply – it is just one poll, and it could be just as much of a blip as the 5 point Conservative lead we had earlier in the week – but it does come after a week when the coalition’s unpopular policy on tuition fees has been very much in the forefront of the news.


340 Responses to “YouGov/Sunday Times – 39/41/10”

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  1. @Howard…It was a yellow that frustrated the Reds in Abu Dhabi today…..I’m beginning to wonder about the grit in the oyster now ! :-)

  2. If I were HH, Amber, I think I would portray DL as Jacob Marley, ghastly to behold and dead as a political dodo.

  3. Every pollster to report since the Comprehensive Spending Review now has reds leading it, with the exception of ICM. That by any measurement is a plus for reds.

    the YG averages are probably a more accurate way of reflecting thier position, so what are they?

    Well since November, Blues still average 41% but that is on rounding upwards. Reds now average 39% and that is on rounding downwards [40.5 v 39.3] LDs average 11% with YG but that is with rounding upwards.

    Should the tuition fees have a lasting impact in the medium term… we are looking at a 40 40 10.

    Reductionists often postulate that these changes are not meaningful. It is worth pointing out that a 1% swing in the vote, can equal a 3% swing in the seats. Thus, even for non-geeks these 1% shifts are meaningful. The parties to take most exception from such an argument are undoubtedly the smaller parties. Hidded away, the growth in Green support as a proportion of their 2010 showing has been most impressive. Remember 1% = c.270,000 voters, and for parties like the Greens, Plaid, SNP- these are very meaningful changes.

  4. @ Howard

    Ooh, that’s a good one. Harriet should have you on her team. ;-)

  5. Yes Ken,I didn’t; want to expand on my answer to Mike N, but here indeed, playing the long game is what essentially the LD sales pitch is at the next GE (not cuckoo in the nest though, that’s not the game at all).

    I like that grit in the oyster a lot and will not mention the resulting pearl again, I promise.

  6. @HOODED MAN
    At least the Italians are good-looking. The only time my wife shows any interest in watching a football match is when Italy’s playing.
    I’d much prefer to be compared to Italy than Argentina. Even I don’t think it’s fair to compare DC to Maradona.

  7. @ Éoin

    Some of Celtic’s best years were when they mixed Scottish, Swedish, Irish. (Larsson, O’Neil etc).

    Being that mix myself perhaps makes me a tad biased. ;-)

  8. Amber,

    I see God was in the crowd for the aberdeen game :) Don’t forget Lubo, who I think added a spice of his own! Mjalby, Jackie Mac, the Belgian… Joos Valgarren :) By golly we were Europeans! Although Julian is right, a bit of Di canio wasn;t half bad :)

    For the record, Jinky, and McGeady still top that list for me :)

  9. So… what changed from 42 37 11 to 39 41 10 (apart from the obvious)?

    Men switched -5C +6L
    Women only -1C +3L

    18-24 yrs -9C +9L
    25-39 yrs -2C +5L
    40-59 yrs -3C +3L
    60+ yrs -1C +2L

    ABC1 -2C +3L
    C2DE -7C +6L

    London -11C +12L
    RoSouth -0C +3L
    Mid/Wales -3C +2L
    North -0C +5L
    Scotland -2C +1L

    Cross-break caveats & all that… I still think this is a wee bit interesting. 8-)

  10. @AMBER -“Cross-break caveats & all that…”
    You think saying that can save you from the Polling Police?
    You’re nicked mate.

  11. Amber,

    nee naw nee naw nee naw ;)

    an average of thos eover a month and then getting some kind soul at YG to internally weight them would be nice. How much would that cost?

    I think the average on women especially since the election is very interesting. since it is my interest, I undertake to work out an uninternally weighted average and post it!

    But yes, Amber, more than a wee bit interesting :) It’s like asking a man on a desert Island if he’d date Vanessa Feltz?

  12. @ Julian

    LOL :-)

    It’s a fair cop – I was already imagining Red Ken beating Blue Boris because of the yoof vote. ;-)

  13. Posted to my own blog (link in my name) about why Team Blue seem to be making little headway despite all their policies polling well and apparently being popular. (And thus Correct and Mandated according to some.)

  14. @Amber

    More than a little interesting. Even ignoring the enormous apparent swings in the young and in London, which might conceivably be due to sample size, the fact that every single category, of whatever sort, showed a swing to Labour pretty much nails on that there has been a sizeable shift this week. MoE can’t explain it, since in that case we’d expect to see some categories swinging against the trend.

  15. File on Four today about a potential crisis looming if there is an expanded role for charities (replacing public sector functions) in any Big Society.

    The amount of fraud in the charity sector is massively under-reported.
    27% cut in funding to the Charities Commission will exacerbate this light touch regulation.
    Charities are increasingly being forced to cut back on localism, in favour of centralised administration to save money.
    Charities are not of sufficient size to have the proper accountability/oversight structures in place to guarrantee that abuses are picked up in good time.

  16. “I think I would portray DL as Jacob Marley, ghastly to behold and dead as a political dodo.”

    Unless this is an example of your subtly complex humour Howard-given this chap is a LibDem -I would not want to hear your proposed Harmanisms for any Conservative MP :-)

    Wellington & his army come to mind !

  17. @ Robin

    Yes, aside from my quip about Ken & Boris, it was the ‘across the board’ breadth of the changes that made this interesting to me. 8-)

  18. Eoin

    More appropriately for today’s game was Dave Allen’s farewell “May your God go with you”. 2nd minute of injury time!

  19. OldNat,

    We’ll take it! :) I am not quite sure where Hooper came from but is it any wonder the Greens are benefitting from Blues recent misfortune?

  20. @ Billy Bob

    The BS based on charitable volunteers has always been fatally flawed. The nature of volunteerism means charities have no idea how many volunteers will be available.

    “We had ‘clients’ & you didn’t show up yesterday,” says paid charity organiser.
    “I had stuff I needed to do; & if you are going to be nippy with me, I won’t be coming back,” replies volunteer.
    “Oh, I’m very sorry, please don’t stop volunteering [you unreliable sod, I’d tell you to get lost but we are desperate],” says [thinks] the paid organiser.

    It’s a daft concept… organising it would be like herding cats. 8-)

  21. Amber

    The “Big Society” was trialled in St John’s parish in Glasgow in 1817 when the Rev Thomas Chalmers was given permission to provide Poor Relief in his parish from voluntary contributions. It appeared to be a great success. In reality it was a con – as the middle class in Glasgow funnelled cash to the parish in an attempt to avoid a compulsory levy on property being applied by showing that “voluntarism” worked.

    In St John’s the “deserving” received support while the “idle and profligate” were required to work for their living.

    As Eoin (I think) noted – History repeats itself.

  22. @ Amber and Billy Bob

    The issue of volunteers is a massive problem. When further education colleges cut back on their counselling courses, the charities (and to some degree NHS) recognised with shock that they could not rely on the free labour of trainee counsellors and they would have to pay. Well, they don’t, they are just cutting back the services in a massive scale (it started about 18 months ago – so the current government can only make it worse, but did not cause it).

    Also, there are problems when charities gain public projects. They are responsible employers, so they pay full pay (well, the ones I know) to people on sick leave, plus maternity benefits, etc. However, when they applied for the funding they included only the particular person in the bid – now the person is on maternity or sick leave, he or she gets the money and the charity has no money to recruit somebody else (it’s particularly exciting for a 12-month project). So there is multitasking (the biggest enemy of project management) of the paid employees and lassoing in more or less willing volunteers.

    Let me just repeat: there was no research what so ever carried out for decisions in the CSR (or the emergency budget). These were made on the basis of the parameters issued by the Treasury and then the gut feelings of politicians and senior civil servants. The junior civil servants then had to tick the appropriate boxes and cascade out the gut feelings to more or less comprehensible tables.

  23. @ Old Nat

    And, with reference to Billy Bob’s post, I’d bet that the St John’s parish 1817 accounting & auditing wasn’t up to scratch either. 8-)

  24. IMO, how civilised a society is can be directly measured by how best it looks after its weakest.
    The fact that ‘looking your weakest’ is often seen to go against human nature and isn’t perhaps the best economic model, is precisely why it’s a measure of civilisation.
    I see charity (and I include most of the BS ideas in this term) as an extra, added bonus on top of care provided as a right by the state.
    A civilised state that is of course.
    And before anyone attacks this idea as Communist or whatever, the weakest were NOT looked after best in a Communist state.

  25. @Robin…Charity begins at home…. I have a personal rule never to contribute to charities that act outside the UK, same reason as you. :-)

  26. Any organsied group of individuals that set out to help people in whatever way, in my view, is to be broadly welcomed. The state is not all seeing and all knowing. Charity is like polyfilla, in a good way. I know there are exceptions, they are unfortunate when they arise. But to avoid taking away from the good chairty does, I would be loathe to raise examples.

    There were xmas’s growing up, were charities provided me with the only xmas presents I got that year. I distinctly recall Social Services not wnating to know of our plight because the family were Sinn Féiners. It taught me that when the state sometimes lets you down, charity can be there for you. I have tried to repay this debt all my life. The truth is that I probably never will.

  27. Robin, Julian,
    I agree , I have a similar attitude to charities, in that I do not believe that they should be necessary, as you say a civilized caring society should provide and if charities are necessary then we are not providing.

    The only exception is cancer charities and Alzheimer’s , because of family reasons I break my own rules.
    I am sure some people see this as odd.

  28. @ Eoin

    Tonight’s Sun poll might be quite a good indicator of the underlying position you speak of. Unusually, none of the issues knocking around during the weekend have been particularly prominent IMO. So, unusually for recent weeks, what we may get is a poll reflecting underlying political preferences, not influenced by whatever headline is dominating the day’s news.

    I suspect this position is now around your 40 40 10 so will go for that (and will of course claim m.o.e. if this proves to be a total nonsense).

  29. @Robin….Sorry, my last post wasn’t for you, the post I responded to disappeared.

  30. @Pam F……Did you notice Robin’s post re charity, it disappeared, I had responded with a facetious remark, and now in its isolation, it appears crass.

  31. Ken, no just popped in so did not see missing remark.

  32. Phil,

    Much to my own disappointment Rpuert M (or James M) won’t commission a pol for their Monday morning papers.

    I think I lunchtime reuters Ipsos Mori is a possibility [Tomorrow]

  33. Amber

    You’re dead right!

    The fiddled accounts weren’t discovered till the late 1960s.

  34. @Pam F………..But you responded to it !

  35. What I am trying to say is that we should collectively be providing for the needy, and I do not think that charities should be expected to provide for the needy in place of the state. It’s a bit like funding things via a lottery, taxing the poor rather than the rich.

    If things get so bad we need charities to put things right then I think we have failed somewhere.

  36. Ah, that one, so I did. Duh…

  37. @KEN
    You’re worried about sounding facetious or crass?
    You’re a Tory. You should be used to being accused of that. ;)

  38. A few points which have impinged on Scotland
    Galloway? Lab our will not fear him. On the contrary, he will attract votes from the SNP rather than labour. If he gats a seat it is 50% likely to be from the SNP, alternatively it could be at the expense of Tories, Lib Dem or Green but not Labour. George (who I have met at various times over the last 20 years) is fore-grounding his celebrity and his USP as the only far-left candidate to oppose seperatism. He will be no threat at all in the Parliament to Labour. The belief amongs nationalists that he will is evidence of them coming to believe their own propaganda. Music to the ears of Labour IMO
    Tories?
    There is no polling evidence that the Tories will lose seats in the forthcoming election. On the contrary, they seem going by figures to go up by 2 or 3.

  39. @Pam F….Thank goodness for that, It must be the snipmeister at work. :-)
    By the way, we Blues got a real kickin’ from the Reds, at the Bridge today. :-)

  40. IMO, there is no point being partisan about the BS. Politicians of any colour would do it, if they really thought it would work.

    What could be more socially democratic than an army of volunteers, working to government targets, in order to obtain funding from the state for social projects?

    Éoin has pointed this out several times because he is greatly in favour of localism. The thing is, it doesn’t work.

    Whilst the charities are small & local, they lack sufficient depth to be reliable providers; when they grow in size, they become state funded organisations that require the same level of executive remuneration & bureaucracy found in the public sector & in large, private sector organisations.

    The organisations become, in reality, no different to state/ private sector profit making organisations. People stop volunteering because they can see that they are being ‘exploited’ by highly paid, quasi-civil servants who are, albeit indirectly, on the government payroll & doing very nicely, thank you.

    In summary, organisations which utilise voluntary workers have built-in obsolescence & the obsolescence usually coincides with the point at which they actually become large enough to be reliable & accountable. 8-)

  41. @Julian Gilbert…. :-) :-)

  42. @Amber…..St John’s Ambulance, Red Cross, National Lifeboat Inst., Battersea Dogs Home, etc., etc.,where are you coming from here ?

  43. Barney

    Rather self evident that Labour won’t lose a list seat to Galloway. With their domination of the constituency seats they have never had a list MSP in Glasgow!

    of Iain Gray are, however, entirely another matter.

  44. Ken Yes, so i saw the Blues got a thorough beating today. Pity my lot let the Reds get back yesterday. They always get the better of us.
    Maybe we were too charitable!

    Got a bad feeling about tonight’s polls. All that excitement about the 2 % lead might lead to an anticlimax.
    Just like losing the lead yesterday afternoon I suppose.

    Still you never know.

  45. Amber

    Beautifully put.

  46. What Amber said [says he erasing several long paragraphs he was about to post]

    I would only add that the charity sector is particularly prone to fraud, as someone was pointing out earlier. As well as the opportunity for individual straightforward fraud, there are charities who are fraudulent in themselves with most of the money going to “overheads” and token amounts going to other charities to justify their status. The lax charity laws and the under-enforcement of those that do exist make this all too easy.

  47. Eoin

    7.17pm :-)

    The bleak reality of the all powerful, all knowing State glowers from those posts.

    Ye gods-have they never heard of:-

    Barnados .
    The Scouts Assn.
    Child Poverty Action Group.
    Shelter
    Raleigh International
    Guide Dogs for The Blind
    RNIB
    Leonard Cheshire Foundation
    Scope
    BLESMA
    Disabled Living Foundation
    British Heart Foundation
    National Trust
    THe Wildlife TRusts
    RSPB
    Woodland TRust
    Whitechapel Mission
    Cancer Research
    The Shaw Trust
    ………………………..

    or the thousands of Social Enterprises, CICs, Not For Profit Organisations etc etc of all sizes from small to massive, employing thousands of people, supplemented by thousands of volunteers, who make peoples lives & our environment better every day of every week-and allow those who want to , to play some part-large or small in achieving it-without some bloody government official somewhere telling us what we should be doing, how we should be doing it, but never , ever helping us to do any of it ?

  48. i hear on the radio that alan johnson has suggested that labour might scrap the 50% tax band

    what!

    where is red ed

  49. One so far unremarked feature of the Sunday Times poll is the question, which I haven’t seen asked before:
    “would you support or oppose increasing taxation on the very rich to reduce the difference in earnings between the richest and poorest”

    77% support, 17% oppose.

    For Cons, the split is 65% support, 30% oppose
    For Labour supporters, the split is 87% to 8%.

    Why do I bring this up? Because Alan Johnson is one of the 8%. On today’s Politics Show he is reported as having said that he wants the new 50% tax rate on the very highest incomes to be temporary. At least you can’t accuse the Blairites of populism.

  50. Next time your kids go climbing in the Cairngorms, just hope that the Mountain Rescue volunteers haven’t nicked all the money and done a runner….!

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