YouGov’s weekly poll for the Sunday Times has topline figures of CON 40%, LAB 40%, LDEM 9%.

On the regular approval trackers everyone is down – government approval is minus 14, with 50% disapproving of this government for the first time. David Cameron’s net rating drops to plus 2, still positive but the lowest he has recorded as Prime Minister (he recorded much lower scores as Leader of the Opposition back in 2007). Nick Clegg’s approval rating plummets to minus 22, down from minus 13 a week ago and by far his lowest ever score as leader. Ed Miliband’s approval rating has also dropped into negative territory for the first time, down to minus 9 (28% think he is doing well, 37% doing badly).

On the topical questions of the week, YouGov first asked a series of questions about the Euro and Ireland. As with the YouGov/Sun questions earlier in the week, just under half (48%) of respondents opposed Britain bailing out Ireland, with 36% supporting it. There was overwhelming (74%) rejection of Britain bailing out other European countries such as Portugal. Only 22% agreed with the statement that Britain’s economy was reliant upon our exports to other countries and therefore it was in our interests to help the Eurozone avoid a crisis, 60% think Britain has its own problems and cannot afford to help.

On the Euro, 76% think – in hindsight – ther Britain would have been worse off had we joined the Euro, and 54% think the Euro has been mainly bad for the other countries in the European Union (only 16% see it as a good thing for the Eurozone). However, there is some recognition that this doesn’t necessarily mean its collapse would be a good thing – only 26% think it would be good if the Euro collapsed, 34% a bad thing.

On the broader question of Britain’s relationship with the EU, 10% would like a more integrated Europe, 14% the status quo, 38% a less integrated Europe and 26% Britain’s total withdrawal from the European Union.

There were also a couple of questions on Howard Flight. 42% thought Flight was wrong about the effect of the government’s cuts in child benefit, and 46% thought that his peerage should be halted.

Finally, there were a series on questions on the Royal Wedding, which generally showed approval for the choice of date and the bank holiday. Only 19% objected to the idea of the wedding being held just before the AV referendum. On titles, 20% now think Camilla should become Queen when Charles becomes King (39% backing Princess Consort, the title it was announced she we would use when Charles and Camilla married, 26% some other title). YouGov also asked whether Kate Middleson should become Princess of Wales, should William be created Prince of Wales in due course. 74% think she should, 13% she shouldn’t.


178 Responses to “YouGov/Sunday Times – 40/40/9”

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  1. @Anthony Wells

    Thee’s a discussion above about who retains copyright on comments on this blog: any ideas?

    Regards, Martyn

  2. @ Martyn

    Well, Ed M’s popularity has been dragged down by the Dems giving him the bird – so, yes, I think he has been rumbled as a team player rather than the principled, individualist leader that some hoped to see. ;-)

    That said, Ed’s bluff is open to being called. He has said he’d campaign for a “yes”, if the date of the referendum was changed.

    When I see the lovely old New Labour faces that are advocating a “no” vote, I am quite tempted to vote “yes” myself.
    8-)

  3. amber

    just do it

    vote yes :-)

  4. @Martyn

    I have been investigating issues about re-use of web data, and broadly:

    The assumption that if it’s on the web you can use it is “over emphasised”
    You retain copyright to anything you create unless you explicitly sign it away. Anthony’s rubric covers his own posts only IMHO.

    This comes from two separate and independent legal teams.

    Disclaimer: I’m not a lawyer
    Disclaimer 2: This advice was wrapped around with lawyerly caution
    Disclaimer 3: There is little to no case law

    However, Robin is right – unless large paragraphs are directly quoted its going to be a tough one to prove. The danger to a journalist is more likely to be repetitional.

  5. It’s funny that you guys bring up Walt Disney. I think he followed British politics and created an illusion to the traditional UK gender gap in his 1961 animated classic 101 Dalamations. Pongo, the male Dalmation, wears a red collar while Perdie, the female Dalmation wears a blue collar (both colors matching similarly to Labour and the Conservatives).

    This WikiLeak stuff is bad news. But a lot of the leaks seems like a lot of catty comments (worthy of TMZ or Perez Hilton) about foreign officials and a lot of shocking revelations that we already knew about. The Arabs don’t like Iran and fear it getting nuclear weapon capacity, the Chinese disliking North Korea, U.S. diplomats having no idea how to talk to Iranians, the mafia running Russia, Putin controlling Russia with Medvedev as a puppet, Israel being used as a pawn in any Middle East negotiation, the Afghanistan government is completely corrupt and ineffective…..these are all things we already knew.

    As for all the catty descriptions of foreign leaders, the leaks are damaging but they’re not really anything shockingly unknown. Berlusconi is a wacko, Merkel is unhelpful, Sarkozy is an authoritarian egomaniac…what’s new? As for the description of David Cameron, I think that’s news but it doesn’t surprise me because for some reason people and media reporters had it in their minds that Cameron and Obama really liked each other and got along. I could tell by their body language that they didn’t (Obama almost always gives away his feelings about people with his body language). So I guess I feel personally vindicated. As for Gordon Brown being mentally unstable…..I read Peter Mandelson’s book and came away with the same conclusion (albeit the man is brilliant….I think he’s what one might term “twice exceptional”).

    I doubt it hurts Cameron that much. It might even help. I’m sure that there are a lot of people with similar feelings about Obama.

    @ Amber Star

    I think Ed Miliband might be hurt by personally supporting AV but claiming he won’t campaign for it. It looks weak and gutless. The party doesn’t want the referendum to pass. Miliband is trying to have it both ways by saying “well I support it” but then claiming he won’t lift a finger for it. He can attempt to appeal to people who are reform minded but also help his party’s ultimate aim, which is to see the referendum fail. But if you truly believe in AV and support AV (and you lead the UK’s second largest political party), then you should be campaigning for it (even if you do a totally half-assed job of it).

  6. And I’ll have to caveat what I said about WikiLeaks….I’ve noticed some stuff about U.S. policy failures that are highly damaging. And I’m sure there will be more to come out that could be much worse. But a good deal of stuff seems like releases of catty comments and celebrity gossip.

  7. Whatever the Americans say, we obviously can’t trust them. The criticisms are a personal opinion from someone at the US Embassy and should be taken as such. The fact is, as Social Liberal put it, there are a lot of people with similar feelings about Obama. We might add two-faced so and so as an added criticism!

    Be interesting to see if DC is affected in the polls by this.

    @ Amber Star

    EM is obviously a very principled politician, he throws the toys out of the pram just because the date of a referendum doesn’t suit him.

  8. Is it Simon Cowell that people have decided to humiliate? Once people have made their minds up it is pointless to try and change them. Ed M would be making himself King Canute if he campaigned for a yes vote. People have decided to give Nick C a bash on the nose that is if they are going to vote at all

  9. @Martyn

    The odds for a 2011 election are 9/2 so the only way to bet that it is not going to happen is to ‘lay’ the odds on a betting exchange or find an individual strongly opposed to your view.

  10. Ed is quite within his rights to campaign for or against AV, but essentially, as it is a free vote, it is not a party issue.

    In my own Labour Party Branch, we are something like 1/3 for, 1/3 against and 1/3 not sure or not bothered. If Ed took a ‘Yes’ stance on behalf of the whole party, I don’t think it would go down well, and would not representative of the view of the membership.

    I actually joined the no2av campaign myself yesterday, and the funny thing is that locally I am in the company of Baroness Warsi.

  11. Aleksandar. What odds can I get on a 2015 GE? By far the most likely outcome.

  12. Recently I also saw odds of 6/4 for a 2015 GE.

    I thought it was very generous for an out come I would put at around 90% likely.

    Martyn,

    Why don’t you post on the PB website? Your query on finding out how to bet as you wish may be better answered?

  13. 6/4 is commonly available though one firm, extrabet, is offering an attractive 7/4 on 2015 or later.

    IMHO this is a better bet than ‘laying’ 9/2 for a 2011 election though ,of course, it leaves you open to 2012-4 elections.

  14. If a horse race had one horse was as likely to win as the chance of a 2015 GE, you’d be lucky to get evens.

    7/4 – bargain!

  15. Some key numbers from OBR revised forecasts:-

    Growth:-
    2010 + 1.8% ( was +1.2)
    2011 + 2.2 ( was 2.3)
    2012 +2.6
    2013 + 2.9
    2014 +2.8
    2015 + 2.7

    PSNB 2010 £148.5 bn ( was £149 bn)

    Borrowing/% GDP-peaks 2013/14 @ 69.7% GDP

    Public Sector job losses over parliament 330k ( was 490k )

    Employment-Net over Parliament + 1.1 million

    Inflation back to 1,9% in 2012.

    GO in HoC at 3.30pm

  16. If the Coalition can deliver that, they will be happy I would have thought.

  17. I know I am none too bright, but the government explanation that next year’s growth forecast is being downgraded because some of next year’s growth occurred this year, is too clever for me

  18. Ed M has the potential to be tactically very canny and he is wise to keep most options open for 2011.

    2011 is likely to be a political/economic year unlike any other that most of us will have experienced – the severity of the cuts, the VAT increase and various welfare/benefit changes will be noticed by all and will spawn a wide variety of local and national protests.

    The remaining Lib Dems are still hoping that ‘something will turn up’ to bolster their position before the May elections. It won’t , and hundreds of Lib Dem ex-councillors are going to be making their feelings heard on May 6th and beyond.

  19. Man the lifeboats,man the lifeboats!

    The good ship ‘Red Flag’ has been holed below the water-line.

    Reports are coming in of the ship listing & taking in water,after a devastating attack by a OBR missile.

  20. @Anthony:

    Yes the Duchess of Cornwall is defacto Princess of Wales and will be defacto queen no matter what she choses to be called….

    Though whether the archibshop and the others will bring themselves to annoint her as Queen is a much more interesteting matter…given her marital status.

  21. @Garry K (re PB), @Duncan (re copyright): good points, thank you
    @Amber “…With our combined strength, we can end this destructive conflict, and bring order to the galaxy… Luke Amber, you can destroy the Emperor FPTP system. It is your destiny! Join me, and together, we can rule the galaxy as father and son daughter…MWAHH-HAHHH-HAAHH (cue Evil Overlord laugh)…” (sorry, couldn’t resist the opportunity to geek out… :-) )
    @Colin: Are they serious? Growth at >2%pa for 4 years solid? Is that GDP, or am I making a stupid mistake

    Regards, Martyn

  22. I always thought that a Labour strategy based on the Coalition’s sky falling in was not very good. If the economy runs anything like this forecast, a much better way must be found.

    Ed really needs to create a vision of how he sees Society, and use the next year or two to really flesh this out.

    Labour needs to go forward based on the following assumptions:

    1) The economy will be in better shape in 2015
    2) The pain of the cuts will be mostly forgotten
    3) Those who haven’t forgotten probably were not natural Conservative voters anyway
    4) The big gap remaining in the political landscape will be the centre-left and left

    This is the group that needs to be formed into a coherent force, a party that appeals to Labour voters, the old SDP wing of the Liberal Democrats and the Greens.

    It’s a big job…

  23. richard

    the missile had a dummy warhead

  24. @ Richard
    OBR forecasts will not sink the Labour Party. Actual numbers like that could damage it, but the two things are miles apart and we will wwait and see. I will be very surprised if these figures from the OBR are realsistic and i will expect a lot of revision. Although a lot of revision in the cuts package has already taken place.

    IMO either the reduction in the deficit will be less or growth will be.

    However I do agree the LAbour Party need to have an alternative message other than that.

  25. Robert Chote is doing an excellent job at the OBR.

    His OBR growth prediction has apparently saved 160,000 public sector jobs from being cut. :-)

  26. So a £6m surplus is predicted by the OBR in 2015?

    So that’s a 2015 election with some juicy tax cuts to tempt you. What would you prefer Mr or Mrs Swing Voter?

    1) That 1p off the basic income tax rate plus £200 off the personal tax allowance

    or

    2) Take 10% of CGT and take 1% off employers class 1 NI rate

    ;-)

  27. Correction:

    1) That’s 1p off the basic income tax rate plus £200 on the personal tax allowance

  28. Just £6 million surplus in 2015?

    Wow.

    loose change then or difference in roundings?

  29. GRAHAM BC
    “I will be very surprised if these figures from the OBR are realsistic and i will expect a lot of revision”.

    Of course there will be a lot of revisions because all the assumptions are unlikely to be borne out in practise. The revisions may be in either direction. But why do you think the figures are unrealistic e.g which of the OBR’s assumptions do you think are wrong?

    “I will be very surprised if these figures from the OBR are realsistic and i will expect a lot of revision”.

    Of course there will be a lot of revisions because all the assumptions are unlikely to be bourne out in practise. But why do you think the figures are unrealistic e.g which of the OBR’s assumptions do you think are wrong?

  30. @Amber Star

    Aye, Robert Chote is wasted in that role. He should be made Chancellor.

  31. Sorry, Billions :-)

  32. The caveat Alan Johnson read out is fair comment.
    Can these figures even if believable, save us from the Ponzi Scheme that is our economy? I guess I will have to stop salivating about more cutbacks for starving ophans at this rate.

  33. Noone ever believed Treasury forecasts, and to me the OBR is really just the Treasury but with a suit of armour on to prevent backstabbing by the political needs of the Chancellor (if that actually ever happened – I am not so sure it was ever that venal).

    They do create rather an interesting trap for the government though. If we achieve that level of growth it would be a remarkable achievement, but it will be passed off as “just as expected”. If we fall below the predictions then it will be portrayed as a failure.

    As has been sensibly mentioned, the trap for Labour is to assume that the predicted growth won’t be achieved, predict disaster and risk going into the next election looking like a nutter with an “End of the World Is Nigh” sandwich board.

    As always the best strategy is probably to keep the powder dry, set up policy reviews and delay any tactical decisions until it becomes clearer whether the recovery has legs. That’s basically what Labour are doing and I think it will serve them well. I think it’s unlikely they’ll win in 2015 if the economy is in good shape, but at least they can make a good showing. If we do have disaster they’ll win in 2015 whatever happens.

  34. ROLAND HAINES

    “I guess I will have to stop salivating about more cutbacks for starving orphans at this rate.”

    Hasn’t your caricature slipped a bit? It would have been salivating at the thought of more starving orphans. :-)

  35. In the early 1980’s the Sunday Times used to keep a tally of job losses – is anyone keeping a tally of public sector job losses now?

  36. roland

    i find it disturbing when you use the words, salivating and orphans in the same sentence

  37. @Neil A
    “As always the best strategy is probably to keep the powder dry, set up policy reviews and delay any tactical decisions until it becomes clearer whether the recovery has legs…”

    Aye, eminently sensible

  38. Osborne really is treading on dangerous territory. I’ve no idea what global scenario the OBR used in their calculations, but a rapidly devaluing Euro and carnage coming in European bond markets is now expected, and this will have implications for the UK.

    The British folk memory is littered with statements from former Tory chancellors (a price worth paying, green shoots of recovery etc) and I wonder whether ‘we are turning the tanker around’ will be the next in line.

    Even the OBR says it’s forecasts are almost certainly wrong, and to present these as if they have reported what has already happened is casino politics.

  39. @Roland,

    Do stick with the script dear boy. We Tories gave up eating babies when replaced Count von Howard with nice Mr Cameron, remember…

  40. Have a comment in moderation – not sure why, but I was making the point that Osborne has taken a major gamble in the way he has presente the OBR numbers, almost as if they have already happened. Even the OBR says they are almost certainly wrong.

  41. @OLD NAT & NEIL A
    Sorry chaps the £9000 to go to Uni “youv’e never had it so good” took me back a bit.

  42. @ Neil A

    ” the trap for Labour is to assume that the predicted growth won’t be achieved, predict disaster and risk going into the next election looking like a nutter with an “End of the World Is Nigh” sandwich board. …..
    …..the best strategy is probably to keep the powder dry, set up policy reviews and delay any tactical decisions until it becomes clearer whether the recovery has legs. That’s basically what Labour are doing and I think it
    will serve them well.”

    Actually AJ -holding the OBR document in his hand-said in HoC that GO’s deficit reduction plan is a “reckless gamble”.

    ie-he does not believe that the outcomes from GO’s policies, just predicted by OBR , are correct.

    I think that puts him firmly in your sandwich board category.

    @ “to me the OBR is really just the Treasury but with a suit of armour on to prevent backstabbing by the political needs of the Chancellor”

    Actually it is the three men who sign off OBR reports -who are :-

    Robert Chote: Chairman :
    Former Director of the Institute for Fiscal Studies.Former advisor to senior management at the International Monetary Fund .Former Economics Editor of the Financial Times .A Governor of the National Institute for Economic and Social Research.

    Stephen Nickell:
    Warden of Nuffield College, Oxford. Former Economics Professor at both LSE Oxford. Former President of the Royal Economic Society.Former member of the Bank of England Monetary Policy Committee.Fellow of the Econometric Society and the British Academy .Foreign honorary member of the American Economic Association and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

    Graham Parker
    Former civil servant working on manpower planning, economic statistics, analysis, forecasts and policy costings for the Inland Revenue .Former head of the Public Sector Finances team in the Treasury, forecasting the whole of public sector expenditure, receipts and advising on the fiscal position. IMF Fiscal Affairs Division’s panel of technical experts member.

  43. Neil A

    ‘As always the best strategy is probably to keep the powder dry’

    You are right that is a good policy.

    Labour though have said,non,nein,nada,no,the tory policies will not under any circumstances work.

    Also they went further saying tory cuts would most likely cause a double-dip.

    Labour have kept there powder about as dry as a Mermaids brassiere.

  44. @COLIN
    As I said to a Labour supporter the other day, “if things are looking good economically in 2015, I am sure you will find a left wing blogging site that gives the credit to Brown and Darling”. Whether the public at large will show any interest in this report I dont know, but we will soon find out via the polls.

  45. Rather than saving 160,000 jobs in the public sector, can we not cut them anyway and buy some new jets for our otherwise white elephant carries?

  46. A thousand pardons, carries = carriers.

  47. Alec

    ‘I was making the point that Osborne has taken a major gamble in the way he has presente the OBR numbers, almost as if they have already happened. Even the OBR says they are almost certainly wrong’.

    The OBR stated categorically,their forecast is just as likely to be wrong on the downside or upside in equal measure Alec.(perhaps you missed it).

    They also stated there was a +50% chance that the coalition would reach its deficit reduction goal one year earlier than forecast.

    However they saw little to no chance of a double dip.(back to the drawing board AJ).

  48. Roland,

    Your first idea was best….forget fighter jets, have a ship full of teenage girls with the power kill by the power of the mind….

    :-)

  49. Roland.
    That is not funny or clever.
    It is pretty unacceptable really.

    Martin can you get rid of this offensive rw troll please?

  50. “However they saw little to no chance of a double dip”

    And the Republic of Ireland was a shining example of how to deal with the credit crunch.

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