Tonight’s weekly YouGov poll for the Sunday Times has topline voting intention figures of CON 38%, LAB 41%, LDEM 11%. The three point Labour lead is the smallest recorded in a YouGov poll since January and confirms the narrowing of the Labour lead we saw in YouGov’s immediate post budget poll.

On top of the ICM/Guardian poll it certainly suggests the government are enjoying some minor boost in the polls from from the budget, but there’s no particular reason to think it will last.

I’m not aware of any other polls due to come out tonight (apart from the Sunday Times and the monthly ComRes poll for the Indy on Sunday, which we’ve already had this month, polls for Sunday newspapers have dried up a bit) but that doesn’t necessarily mean there aren’t any! I’ll update tomorrow when the tables for the YouGov poll are published.

68 Responses to “YouGov show Labour lead of 3 points”

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  1. On the rebranding thing –
    Does anybody know how effective Cameron’s rebranding of the Tory party (new tree logo and all) was on polling figures?

    I realise that the Lib Dems have a harder time, what with still having Nick Clegg at the helm, but would the rebranding lead to a polling boost or would people be put off by such a cynical ploy?

  2. Tingedfringe – there wouldn’t have been any measurable effect in a “before logo, after logo, was there a change?” type way. If the logo had an effect it would have been if it had fed into longer term changes in attitudes towards whether the party had changed and turned over a new leaf.

    It’s not possible to isolate the effect of the logo from other measures.

  3. Anthony Wells,
    I didn’t just mean the logo in itself – I meant the whole rebranding exercise, moving away from being the ‘nasty party’ and all.

    But that is a good point – you can’t judge it very well because of it’s long term implications.
    Thanks for the answer.

  4. Even the Observer has [criticised -AW] Labour’s economic policy [snip]

    Unless Ed M can do something to gain economic credibility and some credibility as a potential leader Labour has no chance. Both seem pretty unlikely, and this demo will have made things worse for Labour.

    [NBeale – comments policy…]

  5. Tingedfringe – that’s a far more complicated question, and probably needs an essay to answer rather than a comment!

    In some ways, the Conservatives undoubtedly did manage to improve their image between 2005-2010. People did see them as less stuck in the past, as more in touch, more competent, united and well-led.

    In some other areas, they made some progress then fell look – looking at how right-wing or moderate people saw the party as between 2005-2010 people’s perceptions of the party became more centrist between 2005-2008… but at the end of the Parliament perceptions of them moved rightwards again.

    Finally, in some other areas they weren’t really successful – primarily the perception that the Conservatives were more interested in helping the rich than other people, which they never really managed to shake off.

  6. I wonder whether EM was wise to hitch his bandwaggon to the TUC protest –

    This mornings coverage is all about the brain-dead practitioners of archo-envy smashing up banks & posh shops. They will always take advantage of a convenient march.

    The 80% of the workforce in the private sector who have lost jobs, working hours & pension rights, might get a bit pissed off with the idea that the 20% of workers in the public sector can march around London , holding up the traffic, demanding special consideration.

    The Press-as has been observed upthread-seems more willing to ask EM where his cuts would impact & on whom.

    EM’s speech was awful-comparisons with the Civil Rights movement & Anti-Apartheid movement sound quite bizarre to anyone with a smattering of history.

    THe Government’s negative approval score seems to be falling quite steadily…..?. No -I must not take comfort-these sack cloth & ashes have a good year’s wear in them yet :-)

  7. @Colin

    I don’t think public sector workers in general will have any issue with their more motivated comrades taking to the streets in protest. Even those who broadly accept the argument for cuts generally feel that the cuts in their sector are excessive and unfair (that’s just the way people are) and won’t mind some brakes being applied to the government. Sadly, the hi-jacking of peaceful protests by thrill seeking yobs is 100% predictable now and I suppose the various Labour figures that participated in the demo should have built that into their calculations. It might have been safer for Ed M to have made himself available for extensive media interviews on the day rather than trying to orate. I think he’s a better Talking Head than he is Rabble Rouser.

  8. Colin – tweet from Paul Waugh earlier this morning (presumably Douglas Alexander is on Marr or something)

    “paulwaugh – Interesting Douglas Alexander tactic: Govt and hardleft r at two ‘extremes’ of cuts debate. We’ll hear more of this I suspect”

    He’s probably right – a nice traditional triangulation, putting Labour as the nice, moderate middle point between the cutters and the deniers.

  9. NEILA

    “I don’t think public sector workers in general will have any issue with their more motivated comrades taking to the streets in protest.”

    I was thinking of the reaction of the 80% who work in the private sector-for whom nobody marched anywhere-let alone trash THe Ritz & F&M .



    If they can don the mantle of what NEILA so amusingly called “some cuts”-it clearly has legs.

    But I would contest the equation of “some cuts” with the TUC rally. Most of the banners, slogans & general image-to me was “No Cuts”.

    And then there is Mr Balls-deficit denier par excellence.

    That triangle may be an uncomfortable-& unstable- place for them to try & perch :-)

  10. @ N Beale

    I think Ed M’s appearance at the demo will help him in the medium term. It’s clear nost of the Preas (Tory papers, Guardian/Observer and Indy) are against him on the cuts issue, but I believe the Press and the Media generally are not properly reflecting the nationwide scale of discontent with the lecel and speed of the cuts.

    take yesterday’s demo. Over 250,000 (on a conservative police estimate) attended. But you woyldn’t know it. As the Press and Media were only interested in a separate protest figuring just hundreds in Piccadilly.

    This deliberate misrepresentation of the events of yestetday, and the attempt to downplay the strength of discontent is only likely to increase support for the ptotestors on the ground. And as more and more peoplr become affected by the cuts, we may begin to see a more balanced narrative.

    Ed M had to take sides. polling will nor reflect yet that he has chosen the right side. But it probably.will in time. Once the Libya and 1p fuel reduction wear off, he has oositioned himself to take advantage of.a key government weakness – tjat hundreds of thousands of families will lose their livelihoods. If a Lanour.leader cqnnot actively support these people, what is the point of the Labour Party?

    As for the LD’s theu are in a bind. They also largely supported Labour’s curs policy pre-election, only to change this in Government. They are now stuck defending a policy they.don’t believe in.

    The Conservartives will draw a short.term boost from thesr events due to the Media oortrayal of them. But the size and scale of the demo would have shocked them. For a first protest, these numbers dwarfed the first Iraq demos considerably. Troubled times ahead. They will be hopinf that their short term spurt contominues until May’s elections.

  11. @ RAF

    I think Ed M’s appearance at the demo will help him in the medium term

    Yesterday was a disaster for Ed and Labour.

    Honestly! Comparing a protest about “too fast too deep cuts” with the Suffragettes and the US civil rights movement. What a joke.

    Also ever trade union boss that is interviewed just adds to the beieif by the majority (in the opinion polls, not my opinion) who think the cuts about right or too little, that the marchers are a bunch of self serving egoists out to protect their jobs, benefits and perks at the expense of those who work in private industry and actually make the wealth of the country.

    Factor in the anarchist “rent a mob” all dressed in the latest desiger Nike etc and it was a shambles for the left.


  12. It’s a bit surprising to see various predictions about the negative effect yesterday’s disruptions alongside/after the anti-cuts march will have. Both times this happened with the student demos, we actually saw a temporary increase in Labour’s polling. This may be partly because any disorder reflect badly on the Government, but also because of sympathy for the march organisers at having their event ‘spoiled’.

    Of course we all know that without some telegenic violence, the media would have taken much less interest in the whole thing (and if had taken place anywhere but central London no interest at all). So the ‘look at me I’m rad’ mob may have done some indirect good for the main protest.

    Incidentally I thought Colin was a bit unfair about the lack of police protection for Fortnum and Mason last night. They were expecting the main disruption to be in Oxford Street and anyway there’s probably an archaic by-law saying the Met are only allowed in F&M if wearing a properly brushed top hat. Also any attempt to kettle there would mainly catch Arab sheiks, Kensington dowagers and Tory MPs’ wives and/or mistresses and/or boyfriends. You do not want to cross these people.

  13. @John Fletcher

    Totally agree that the comparison made by EM was ridiculous, but the general thrust of his argument was probably more valid. That democratic protest can change government policy.

    The degree to which the public will see the protest as selfish probably depends on how members of the public will be directly or on indirectly.affected by by the cuts.

    As.for polling, the Sunday Times YouGov tables (taken before the protest) show 29% in favour of the size and speed of the cuts (4% of tjese want faster cuts), with 29% thinking the cuts are too fast, and 15% too deep. That suggest that a plurality believe the size or speed of the cuts are too great.

  14. @ RAF

    but the general thrust of his argument was probably more valid

    But the speech will be remembered for the stupid comparisons he made, just as a day when 250,000 marched will be remembered for an invasion of Fortnum & Mason.

    Hence my opinion that yesterday was an own goal.

    Real shame for those who bothered to march. Though I don’t agree with them I respect their democraic rights and determination.

    Lions lead by Donkies?

  15. @ Clare

    Welcome, & I think you are correct to agree with me that we are seeing a Libya factor rather than a budget bounce.

    The tables for the Sunday Times poll are up on YG & reaction to the budget (compared to June) does not support it being particularly popular.

    I’m going to read Anthony’s thread about it, & make any comments on that board.

  16. I think the shift is too bang on time with the budget to describe it as anything other than a budget bounce.

  17. OldNat:

    Over the greatest part of the land mass of Scotland the population is so sparse that it is of no interest to big business. A small business elsewhere is a big business in Argyll.

    That’s why the West of Scoland is such an excellent place to build new nuclear power stations and nuclear dumps.

  18. in my experience (Vietnam war, Poll Tax) the British don’t take any cause seriously unless there is some associated disorder. They don’t approve of the disorder, but any cause without it is regarded as insignificant. Stranger but true.

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