YouGov’s daily figures this morning are CON 41%, LAB 38%, LD 11% – putting the Conservatives back in the lead (and, indeed, it would make YouGov the only company showing them in the lead). Given YouGov’s polls have had the two main parties neck and neck for the last three days though, I expect the lead is just normal random variation around an underlying picture of Labour and Conservatives being level.

Before anyone asks, I’m not sure what the effect of the snow will be upon sampling – obviously people facing long commutes through tricky weather are going to be around proportionally less to complete polls, people who’ve taken the time off or worked from home will be around more (unless, for online polls, they fill them in at work!). I’d be cautious of any poll showing strange and wacky results during extreme weather, but this one is well within the margins of error of the polls for the last week.

124 Responses to “YouGov/Sun – 41/38/11”

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  1. Re the World Cup

    I have trouble believing the moaning. FIFA’s role is to develop football. That’s why it didn’t go to Spain / Belgium / England where it’s fully developed. Russia makes central Asia important and it also means Russia stays on football. And it has never had it. Qatar gets it to develop the Arab market, keep sponsors happy and makes the Asian (India Pakistan side) available. The English moaners just dont realise the world doesn’t owe the UK anything.

    And both Russia and Qatar have money. We dont (nor does Portugal and Spain)…

  2. Jack,

    The whole trouble with English football is that we confuse having the highest paid players and the fastest game as being the same has as having the best footballers in the world.

    Take away the foreign superstars and Sky’s £££ and you left with a mediocre game with mediocre players. (I support Leeds, so I know all about mediocre)

    I also think that FIFA are just awful and open to the sort of activities that The Sunday Times wrote about. Russia and FIFA should therefore be excellent bed fellows.

    We are best out of it.

  3. Jack
    I suppose the political significance is why the English were encouraged to continue their bid when it did not match those criteria and what ever made them think otherwise?

    It’s the naive side of it I think could be damaging – you did not mention the Benelux (they got more votes than we).

  4. Sorry Jack you did mention them all, apols.

  5. It will take time for the media to pick up on the implications of the Gov’s removal of the gender pay audit requirement.

    For those interested:
    h ttp://

  6. An interesting result from yesterday:

    Poole UA, Poole Town

    Thursday 02 December 2010 12:00

    Poole People – Putting Poole First 463 (33%; +33.0)
    Con 438 (31.2%; -15.9)
    LD Peter David England 213 (15.2; -3.1)
    Lab 201 (14.3%; +1.2)
    UKIP 55 (3.9; -10.3)
    BNP 32 (2.3%; +2.3)
    [Ind 0 (-7.3)]
    Other gain from Con
    Majority 25
    Turnout 17.0%

    The Council wanted to leave the seat vacant until May, but 2 Electors forced the by Election and £20 k to be spent. ‘Poole People’ are a small group of independents.

    Some of these local results can be funny…

  7. Woolas appeal not upheld. Woolas says “thats it I’m out”.

  8. Garry K
    I’m not saying told you so but I think this does support my case.

    If you want to see how this can happen then see this (usual front end)

    and read the tributes below. Poole has a big issue with the central development there. I defy anyone to draw party conclusions from a turnout of 17%. Shows they don’t care about their town anyway does it not?

    Localism -pah!

  9. Roland
    We must not intrude upon private grief but what with David Chaytor as well, I imagine Lab HQ will want to be ‘moving on’.

  10. @Jack – “I have trouble believing the moaning. FIFA’s role is to develop football. That’s why it didn’t go to Spain / Belgium / England where it’s fully developed.”

    I think that’s a fair point, but the counter is that this was never stated in the bid documents at the outset, but was inserted as a requirement by Blatter’s personal intervention I believe after the bid process got underway. Had it been an explicit requirement I doubt there would have been three western European bids.

    It’s also true to say that the England bid would have established much greater funding for global football development, but there wouldn’t have been the specific regional focus.

    Quatar’s bid is interesting. Covered stadia in 45 – 50C temperatures with air conditioning to keep players and tens of thousands of fans at 27C. I’ve read a number of technical articles that say this is pretty much physically possible, but however they do it, we can be sure that the 2022 World Cup will have the greatest carbon footprint in football history.

  11. Howard,

    Of course predicting trends from very local issues is difficult, and Poole is a real outlier.

    However, it is clear that across solid Labour areas the LDs are dropping about 10% of the share of the vote, and it is mostly going to Labour. I have seen this same drop in share in many, many examples.

    They are also holding there own ok where they are fighting with the Cons for first place.

    So I am confident some trends are occuring, but as Poole has shown, strong local issues trump everything.

    I am sure the LDs will take comfort from that.

    I think we agree don’t we?

  12. alec

    have you never been skiing in Dubai

  13. @HOWARD
    Its a brutal day for us all when men of this calibre are ditched by an ungrateful peasantry.

  14. @Howard
    Also at the risk of intruding upon private grief, I must in response point out that it is now well over 9 months since the LDs won a local authority byelection seat off Labour and that this is certainly the longest such period since 1996 when the online records start.

  15. Bad day for Labour, re Woolas & Chaytor, be interesting to see if it’s reflected in any polls over the next few days.

  16. Steve,

    Personally, I think that the two Labour chaps on the naughty step won’t make much difference to the polls.

    I imagine that any issue with regard to the VI has probably been factored in, or will come and go quickly.

  17. @ Howard

    “In PR countries, there is usually a party of reasonably educated people who follow a tolerant kind of politics. Wishy washy if you like. Socal Liberal and I would be members of the same party in the Netherlands, called D66 after the year it was formed. A very similar development as happened here 20 years later. The reason for the delay in taking the plunge here was FPTP, FPTP and nothing but the FPTP. It seemed a hopeless case and indeed in 1983 it simply split the vote to produce a Con landslide. However from there, it enabled a real growth from the taxi load.”

    Three quick things:

    1. I don’t think there is anything wishy washy about liberalism. Actually, I often feel like liberalism is the most reality based political ideology.

    2. Although I’m sure we’d agree on a great number of issues, I don’t agree with you on proportional representation. I think FPTP and single member districts works very well. There are a number of reasons I take this position but two important reasons for me are this. First, the most impoverished districts have local representatives who have to take care of their districts and their constituents and can help the worst off in society. They can do this through traditional constitutent services even if as a whole, their party and the rest of their fellow lawmakers are not interested in helping. When you have proportional representation, this goes away. Second, single member FPTP districts help to elect people who would otherwise not be considered by their parties as elite enough for them. Parties can have a great impact and influence on election results but in districts, you can elect people who might not get put on a slate of candidates.

    3. There was, if you can believe it, at one time a liberal wing of the Republican Party in the U.S. They were all purged of course but there are many liberals in the U.S. today who don’t neccesarily belong to the Democratic Party. They may vote for Democrats but their vote is not a sure thing and they have to be swayed. For liberals in the UK who are in a similar situation, the Lib Dems are a party for those who aren’t automatically going to be with Labour.

  18. southern Californian liberal

    i agree that liberalism is not wishy washy, standing up for human rights is rarely popular but in Britain liberals are portrayed in this way, we are also portrayed as sitting on the fence, and of course we have the old classic a vote for the libdems is a wasted vote. which embodies all that is wrong with FPTP, there are always two parties both of which are corrupt and there is never any chance of real change because if you vote for anyone but the big two you have wasted your vote, so you have to vote for the least worst option. but more than that FPTP encourages a antagonistic mindset often there is no real difference between the big two but they hate each other in a totally irrational way, and this hate leaks down into the fabric of society. here in norway we have 7 yes seven main parties and it is very rare that they shout at each other or belittle each other, why, because they all have to work together a some point, so the free market conservatives can not be too insulting about the alcohol policy of the socialist led govt (no nanny state BS) because they need to form a coalition with the Christan conservatives if they are going to take power and the Christians are in favour of a restrictive alcohol policy. so many people say that the direct link gets lost under PR but that is not the case, we have six representatives for our local area and i can speak to any one of them if there is something i am concerned about but in practice there is just one which represents my viewpoint so i would probably go to her, in britain i have never lived in an area with a libdem MP

    you should do more research on PR

    i love it, it just so much better

  19. @ Nick Hadley

    “I think you are right in terms of the people who tend to vote Lib Dem in elections, particularly in General Elections, but I think there is a broadly coherent and shared ideology amongst MPs/councillors, activists and members, and I don’t think this has much in common with Toryism and Conservatism. Maybe a one nation Tory like Ken Clarke would occasionally feel at home with the old fashioned Liberal wing of the Lib Dems, as he might too with those old Labour defectors who came into the party when it amalgamated with the SDP (could you put a cigarette paper between Clarke, or the late Sir Ian Gilmour, and Shirley Williams, for example? I don’t think so.). However, in the round, the philosophies and creeds of the Lib Dem party and the Conservatives are mutually antagonistic despite the retrospective application of cosmetics, post coalition formation, to try and convince us otherwise. I’ve campaigned for Labour in local and general elections and seen the enmity on the ground between the two parties and, quite often, it has not been a pretty or edifying sight.

    One of the few really interesting bits for me emerging from the recent Wikileaks revelations has been the light it has shone on the views of the Lib Dems, as shared by their insiders with Washington diplomats, about their Conservative opponents in the run up to the May 2010 election. Kindred spirits sharing common goals or temperamentally and ideologically opposed political parties? You tell me!”

    These WikiLeaks revelations are not good. I’m all for transparency and open government but this goes too far. And even though most of the revelations are kinda catty comments and nothing new, it really harms global diplomacy to have this info out there. I have to say that the Brits are being the most sensible of anyone out there who’s responded to this.

    I have a question for you on SDP folks. The SDP members left Labour because Labour had gone too far left for them. Did any of them come back to Labour though with the advent of New Labour and Tony Blair? I’ve always been curious about this.

  20. @ Richard in Norway

    I think that proportional representation would be constitutionally prohibited by the Constitution (at least for Congress). But if it could be established in the U.S., I would oppose it.

    In terms of a local link, I think it’s very underrated. The idea is that you are responsible to your constituents first and foremost and if you don’t represent your constituents effectively, they can get rid of you. And their individual point of view is irrelevant. You could be represented by a raging leftist and you may fly confederate flags from your home (or vice versa) but your representative still is accountable to you.

    I look at someone like Representative Maxine Waters (D-CA) as a prime example of the needed constituent link. Her district suffers from major problems. Urban blight, high crime, high poverty, high unemployment, gang problems, drug problems, pollution, etc. When her constituents come to her with problems, she takes care of them. That’s just part of her job.

    And if representatives don’t do their jobs properly and ignore their constituents, they can be tossed out. of office. Plus, by having single member districts, you ensure that you draw diversity in those elected to serve and it can help build national consensus.

  21. @ Socalliberal

    There are many forms of PR and the best IMO keep the local representation. My favourite is AMS as used in the Scottish and Welsh Assemblies and the German Elections. This keeps one member one constituency but tops up with other regional representatives.

    @ RiN
    Love your description of how PR works in Norway almost idyllic. Wonder if the Brits could make it work like that or whether we would still be confrontational.

  22. socal liberal
    SDP re-joinining Labour?
    No is the simple answer which might seem puzzling. In part it would have been the depth of the wounds still felt on the Labour side, especially the feelings of those on the right of the Labour Party who felt betrayed by their friends. Another factor might also have been that those who had thrived as a result of joining the Lib Dems would have had something to lose.
    In the current House of Lords debate on constitutional issues, the coalition government arguments are being led by Lord McNally formerly special adviser, I think, to Callaghan. If he does what he is threatening to make it impossible for the unions to fund labour then I think the resentment will be even greater than ever before.
    Charles Kennedy is always keen to say he was elected as SDP so is not considered a traitor

  23. @ Graham BC

    That is an interesting method of combining the two forms electoral representation. You get the best of both worlds.

    @ Barney Crockett

    It just occurred to me (and I posted this on the current thread) that there might have been some very unhappy New Labour folks who would not have welcomed the SDP back with open arms. I would imagine though that ordinary voters who had voted for the SDP in 83′ and 87′ probably did return to Labour by 97′.

    I have little understanding of how campaign finance in the UK works but if labor unions could no longer fund Labour, how would Labour be able to fundraise for campaigns?

  24. Socal liberal
    This comment was in moderation for a long time presumably for using a trip word. Simply without the unions, labour would find funding very, wery difficult.

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