I didn’t get chance to have a proper look at the Sunday Times YouGov poll yesterday – tables are now up here. Looking at the regular tracker first, on the Alternative Vote, using the referendum and weighted by likelihood to vote, the current figures stand at YES 40%, NO 37%, D/K 22%. David Cameron is back into negative approval ratings after his brief post-budget bounce – his net approval is minus 5 (from 0 last week), Ed Miliband is at minus 13 (from minus 15), Nick Clegg at minus 39 (from minus 35). Economic optimism trackers remain in their usual dire state.

That aside the most interesting findings were on attitudes towards the conflict in Libya. Overall people remain slightly more in support than opposed to the military intervention (by 43% to 37%), but are rapidly becoming less positive about how well it is going. In the middle of last week people thought the action was going well by a margin of 3 to 1 – peaking on March 29th with 57% thinking things were going well and 19% thinking things were going badly. By the time of the Sunday Times poll this had narrowed to 42% thinking it was going well and 30% thinking it was going badly – presumably the shift is in response to stories of rebel forces being routed in attacks.

On other Libya questions people remained opposed to arming the rebels (by 28% support to 46% opposed) and strongly opposed to the use of British ground forces (by 18% support to 64% opposed). There was comparatively little support for possible compromise solutions that would leave Gaddafi in place – only 27% of people would support giving Gaddafi the chance to go into exile in exchange for him agreeing to step down voluntarily without a fight, only 13% would think it acceptable for Libya to be partitioned with Gaddafi remaining in power in the West of the country with an independent state in the East of Libya.

Finally YouGov asked about people’s response to the suggestions that Al Qaeda fighters were involved in the Libyan rebellion. I had expected a much more negative reaction in this question, but actually there was more of a streak of realpolitik in people’s responses. 28% of people agreed most with a statement that the West should not help the rebellion if there were signs it included Al Qaeda, 41% agreed most with a statement that the rebellions was bound to contain some unpleasant elements but that it was more important to remove Gaddafi (11% agree with neither statement).

9 Responses to “Latest YouGov polling on Libya”

  1. Anthony, ICM also had one on Libya.. [BBC- Sunday]
    Also unreported YouGov Libya one that had 40% opposed 41% supproting

    In short, opposition to Libyan intervention is growing in ComRes/YG..

  2. Anthony,

    Also a Popilus poll out

  3. The advertisement appearing under this poll report is interesting. It is for “No to AV”. It claims that a switch to AV could let extremists, such as the BNP, win seats if people put them second. However, I hold the opposite view, that a switch to AV could help keep the BNP and other extremists out. I have a faith in the British public that we don’t like extremism and that we’d rank our least liked major party, plus one or two of the harmless “weirdos” to keep out extremists. I know that if I lived in a seat where I thought the BNP stood a chance, I’d rank Labour fourth (after Conservative, Lib Dem, UKIP) to keep the BNP out. I’d hope that Labour supporters might vote Labour, Green, Lib Dem, Tory and together with the Liberal Democrats’ voters’ contribution, we’d keep the BNP out. I would not rank the BNP, as that’s a way to vote against them.

    Is there any polling evidence to support my idea or that of “No to AV”?

  4. @Charles,

    I think the point No to AV are making is not that the BNP would win seats, but that the value of their second preference votes in deciding close contests might make other parties pander to them.

    I don’t think it’s much of an argument, besides which of course in close seats where the “white working class” vote is crucial, candidates of all parties do this anyway. It could be argued that under FPTP the votes of small parties are assiduously courted by the big parties.

  5. Is anyone confused about the status of Moussa Koussa?

    He is apparently *not* a defector, but has been given access to a telephone in order to contact other regime members from his “safe house” in the SE of England, while “he comes to terms with his life changing expirience” . He has not been given immunity from prosecution, but there is a “softly softly” approach to questioning him.

    Is he a prisoner?

  6. Eoin

    The figures you quote 41% v 40% were for 30-31 Mar (published Friday’s Sun). They are now up on the Archive:


    I assume they went missing because of the need to restore the archive to Thursday and they put stuff on again.

  7. @Billy Bob,

    If the reports (which make sense) that his flight was organised by British intelligence officials are true then he would appear to be a defector. I suppose the closest description we could apply would be “VIP Asylum Seeker”.

  8. Al Jazeera now reporting that the US government has removed Moussa Koussa from the list of Libyans subject to sanctions. That’s an indication that he’s not entirely in the doghouse I suppose.

  9. @Neil A

    ‘ A government source told the Sunday Telegraph: “He is not a defector, he has not joined the [Libyan] opposition and he has not joined us.’

    ‘The message that Koussa is “not a defector” and has “not joined us” is aimed squarely at other Libyan officials who might be teetering on the edge of turning their backs on Gaddafi’s faltering regime.’

    The thought had crossed my mind that he might have been seized in a manner reminiscent of Mordechai Vanunu.