Saturday night polls

Tonight’s YouGov poll for the Sunday Times has topline figures of CON 36%, LAB 41%, LDEM 10%. The five point Labour lead is typical of the YouGov polling we’ve seen this week.

In tomorrow’s papers we also have a BPIX poll in the Mail on Sunday which has topline figures of CON 37%, LAB 42%, LDEM 9%, and also an AV question showing YES on 33% and NO on 51%. Given it is a BPIX poll and tables are not normally forthcoming, I do not know what question was asked, and whether it used the bare referendum wording or had some introduction.

As is traditional, Kenny Farquharson of the Scotland on Sunday has also been teasing people about a new YouGov Scotland poll on twitter… I’m afraid I don’t know what’s in that one yet, or whether or not it has voting intention figures!

117 Responses to “Saturday night polls”

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  1. Neil A

    The head of the military line is a bit of a dangerous one to take. The US President is very explicitly head of the military. The Duke of Cambridge is Colonel of the Irish Guards, and his grand mother is explicitly the head of our military. The targeting of any of these people would be seen in a very poor light.


    The UN charter is very limited when it comes to dealing with internal matters. Other than in the case of genocide it really can’t. To my mind that’s a major flaw of the UN – it is an organisation of states (no matter how corrupt or repressive). I think that the actions of NATO have strayed well beyond the terms of the resolution – they are clearly acting on behalf of the rebels, not as neutrals. Again you may say that the resolution wasn’t well drafted, but it is what it is.

  2. @alec

    “God … votes liberal”

    I thought he seemed like a decent chap.


    Progressive – Scottish Opinion Omnibus/Scottish Mail on Sunday
    Scottish Parliament general election – voting intention
    Fieldwork dates: ?
    Sample size: approx 1000 (?)
    (+/- change from P-SOO/Sunday Mail published 24 April)
    Constituency vote (FPTP)
    SNP 45% (-1)
    Lab 35% (-1)
    Con 10% (+1)
    LD 6% (n/c)

    Regional vote (AMS)
    SNP 41% (+3)
    Lab 36% (-1)
    Con 8% (-2)
    Grn 6% (+1)
    LD 5% (-4)

    Seat projection
    (+/- change from notional 2007 result on new boundaries)
    SNP 62 MSPs (+16)
    Lab 51 MSPs (+7)
    Con 8 MSPs (-12)
    LD 5 MSPs (-12)
    Grn 3 MSPs (+2)
    (Ind 0 MSPs (-1))

    YouGov/Scotland on Sunday
    Scottish Parliament general election – voting intention
    Fieldwork dates: ?
    Sample size: approx 1000 (?)
    (+/- change from YouGov/SoS 19-21 April)
    Constituency vote (FPTP)
    SNP 42% (-3)
    Lab 34% (+2)
    Con 12% (+2)
    LD 7% (-1)

    Regional vote (AMS)
    SNP 35% (-4)
    Lab 33% (+4)
    Con 12% (n/c)
    Grn 7% (n/c)
    LD 6% (-1)

    Seat projection
    (+/- change from notional 2007 result on new boundaries)
    SNP 55 (+9)
    Lab 48 (+4)
    Con 13 (-7)
    Grn 8 (+7)
    LD 5 (-12)
    (Ind 0 MSPs (-1))

  4. Interestingly in this YouGov poll, the Westminster VI question was asked after the Holyrood ones.

  5. @ Eoin:

    “3 months ago I posted that the Tories polling then at 36% were doing reasonably well considering that 9 months previous they scored 37% as a share of GB votes..

    In the month that followed the averaged 36%
    In the month that followed that, they averaged 36%
    This month they averaged 36%..”

    I’m often puzzled by your selection of statistics. While you are never wrong (heaven forfend) you are very often highly selective and exclude or ignore data that doesn’t fit the argument you wish to make.

    The above may be another example of this. Many ‘relaxed Tories’ seem to be sharing your view that Cameron’s polling is currently good, despite the fact that any seat analysis suggests Labour would romp home in a GE tomorrow with a very healthy majority.

    You’ve taken last years GE Tory result (37%) compared it to the last three months average (36%) and used these numbers to back your claim that the Tories are doing OK, perhaps hoping to give the impression that they haven’t lost much support by selective data.

    You could have included the the three months before that (Oct – Dec). A quick skim through AW’s archive suggests the Tory averages were 41/40/41. Others have pointed out pre election periods of Tory support at 45%.

    This might lead an open minded analyst to conclude that at present the Tories are stable, at a relative low base and one that cannot see them win a GE, having stemmed the loss of support seen in the last quarter of 2010 but not having recovered any ground. The bottom line is that the current polling situation is undoubtedly one that sees the Tories in really quite deep trouble, although no one knows which way things will run in the future.

    What I think many people are thinking off (perhaps you also?) is the pattern of the Thatcher years, with low mid term support but easy GE wins. I think this misses several extremely important factors;
    1) This recession is caused by a global financial collapse. Recovery will be much slower than the previous Tory recessions.
    2) In the 80’s Labour was really quite poor as a prospective party of government
    3) Thatcher was able to decide when the election would be
    4) Interest rates were controlled by government, and they used this and point 3) very effectively to combine the political cycle with the electoral cycle
    5) Thatcher had a very loyal and substantial popular following – Cameron doesn’t (yet – may do in the future, but I don’t think so).
    6) Money for pre election binges will be tight

    Overall what we are seeing is part of a long term adjustment in Tory supporters views of what is a ‘good’ level of support for them. It’s about historical adjustment. For any Tory supporter or analyst to think that flatlining on 36% for the Tories is a decent level just a year into a parliament shows how much the electoral make up has changed over the decades since they were last in power.

    FWIW I think Cameron is in trouble. His high water mark has been extremely modest and didn’t last long at all, and the economic outlook is not going according to Osborne’s plans. I’d never predict a GE result this far out, but my suspicion is that Cameron will find it very difficult to garner enough support to gain a majority in 2015.

  6. YouGov/Scotland on Sunday

    SNP 42% (-3)
    Lab 34% (+2)

    Regional vote (AMS)
    SNP 35% (-4)
    Lab 33% (+4)

    I think we know what that means oldnat.
    Gray will take this as a vindication of the EdM/Balls new/old strategy of Independence scaremongering.

    Should prove amusing when he tries to sell that old chestnut to the audience in tonights debate.

  7. I’m not sure if anyone picked up on the very strong briefing yesterday that Will & Kate were about to head off to Jordan for their honeymoon, which was going on right up until lunchtime. Then it was all changed to a weekend in the UK and back to work on Monday.

    One or two reports are suggesting the Jordan tip was indeed true, but a Middle East holiday was cancelled at the last minute due to security concerns.

    Apart from perhaps not being the brightest region to choose for the honeymoon, given the Arab world’s worst period of unrest in decades, it would be very interesting to know whether these security concerns were related to specific threats or if there were general concerns over developing events.

    Like Arab reaction to assassination of an Arab leader in a targetted air strike, for example.

  8. What you have not mentioned (alec) Is that the 83 debacle for Labour was in part due to a new party being around splitting the centre left vote. The SDP polled very strongly at the beginning and fractured the labour vote. it did not properly recover until 1997. This time it is very different with a clear single party in the opposition. This changes things.

  9. Some time ago AW posted an analysis of where Cameron was perceived to be (on a left/right spectrum) in relation to his party, and if I remember rightly the inference was that temporary gains from ‘detoxifying the brand’ have already evaporated to a large extent.

  10. If the Libyan government claims are true-and that requires some thought-why did SD expose children to the risk of strikes at a C&C centre?

    NATO have been hitting C&C centres from the inception-it is not news.

    What I do not understand is why NATO are bombing 50 year old radar installations-twice-but not taking out the tanks & artillery which continue the indiscriminate bombardment of Misrata. The crimes being committed in MIsrata will need to be accounted for in due course.

    Perhaps Saif Gaddafi has now escaped his role in that accounting-but he did not need to take family children with him-even though he is culpable in the deaths of many other innocent children.

  11. @Billy Bob – I suspect that, however fair or unfair it might be, the impact of cuts, particulalry in the NHS, will be to toxify the Tories to some extent all over again. I know that the Lib Dems are actively working this strategy by inferring that they are the ones taming Tory excesses, and with this message coming from inside the tent it’s going to be very hard for Cameron to hold the huskie hugging Mr Nice image in the public mind.

    Talking of huskie hugging, Cameron has just lost another significant strand of his detox mission. The environmentalist and conservationist brigade are up in arms (I mean absolutely steaming) about the government placing all UK environment protection laws (such as Climate Change Act, National Parks Act, Clean Air Act and the Wildlife and Countryside Act)
    into the ‘red tape challenge’.

    This consultation is asking the public to say what red tape it wants to get rid off. Although its only a consultation, by placing the environmental legislation into the exercise the government has effectively branded it as red tape, which may or may not be justified.

    There is a degree of hyperbole in the green sectors reaction to this for sure, but overall it is a complete PR disaster and the government has now entirely lost any trust it had from this sector. It is resonating in the same circles as the forest sell off and the expression ‘the greenest government ever’ is now being used as a term of abuse and mockery.

  12. @Colin,

    You are of course assuming that the building concerned was a “Command and Control Structure”. So far it is being reported as a house, but that may of course not be true.

    The distinction may be a vague one, in some circumstances. It is perfectly possible for a group of regime officials to meet in a private home to draw up plans for the shelling of ports and oil refineries, but even if that’s what was happening, and NATO knew it (from human or other Intel) we might never ever know.

  13. ALEC

    Interesting post.

    I am by no means a “relaxed Tory”.

    For me the polling gap must-in all logic-widen as this year progresses.

    However-if it does not, then the questions will be for EM, because as we move into 2012, and given reasonable economic news, the timetable begins to help the Government.

    ……with the obvious & permanent caveat, that if the economy does not recover well, generating private sector jobs in adequate numbers-DC & NC have had it.

  14. NEILA

    My default position , in general-is to believe NATO, & to disbelieve the Libyan regime.

    THis is from BBC :-

    “Nato said it had hit a “known command-and-control building” in the area, adding it did not “target individuals”.

    An alliance spokesman, Lt-Gen Charles Bouchard, said “all Nato’s targets are military in nature”.

  15. Colin

    “……with the obvious & permanent caveat, that if the economy does not recover well, generating private sector jobs in adequate numbers-DC & NC have had it”

    I think that’s about it, yes. That’s the gamble and will decide the next election, sooner ot later. In my opinion it’s not looking good for Osborne’s plan, but if they succeed, they’ll win.

    But if we don’t see recovery and jobs they are, as you say, toast.

  16. “Journalists taken to the walled complex of one-story buildings in a residential Tripoli neighborhood saw heavy bomb damage. The blast had torn down the ceiling of one building and left a huge pile of rubble and twisted metal on the ground.

    Dust and smoke rose from the rubble, which included household items including smashed toilet bowls, bathroom sinks and furniture among the broken walls and demolished floors.”

    My default position is to disbelieve propaganda from both sides.

  17. “Huhne is taking the opportunity now to point to the necessity of a left of centre majority able to avert a repeat of the excesses of Thatcherism.”
    And Vince Cable has an opinion piece in the Independent about how LibDems, Greens (odd to see them finally mentioned as existing?) and Labour should join forces to stop the Tory-led No2AV campaign.

    I’m of two minds over this sort of thing –
    The cynic in me sees it as a last-ditch attempt by the LibDems to try to convince Labour voters to switch to Yes.
    Then, whatever the outcome, the coalition will go back to being rainbows and unicorns (expect a rose-garden joint AV press conference?).

    The Machiavellian in me sees this as an opportunity.
    Perhaps Labour need to call the LibDem’s bluff over this.

    Machiavelli (unless I misread or misremember) pointed out that trying to gain dominance alone (as Labour are now) is a bad strategy.
    The best strategy is to befriend those with potential power, but who are ignored, and stick with them, even after gaining dominance (in a sense, reward their loyalty).

    So Labour should start building a progressive and proportionally ruled alliance, with themselves as the largest, and at times majority, partner.
    This is the long-term interest of the Labour party (to court the Green and Liberal leadership) but also in the interest of those (like the Greens and Liberals) who wish to have proportional representation.

    So although it will deny the Labour party a majority of seats in parliament, it would gain the Labour party the largest say within a progressive coalition.

    If the LALD(AG) figure is true (if movement toward and away from the Labour party is largely from and to the LibDems), then Labour have the security of being a part of government even when the party falls to their lowest numbers for support.

    Of course, they could continue down the same road of gaining a majority (however unsecurely) under FPTP and then losing large amounts of (what they would deem as) progress to the Tories.

    Long-term Machiavellian machinations vs short-term partisan arrogance.

    And in polling terms – if the LibDems as a party denied the formation of the progressive proportional alliance their polling would inevitably collapse and move to Labour (I can’t see Labour losing much support over offering a progressive alliance).

    Wow, long post – apologies.

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