There is a new ComRes poll in tomorrow’s Indy on Sunday & Sunday Mirror. Topline results are CON 37% (-1), LAB 37% (-2), LDEM 11%(nc), Others 15%(+3) – changes are from the last online ComRes poll in mid-May.

ComRes’s online polls tend to be the most pro-Consevative of all the polling companies, but this is actually the same Lab and Con figures as their telephone poll at the end of May. Note the difference between this and the daily YouGov polls which seem to be showing a pretty steady Labour lead of 5 points or so. With the Populus poll last week the difference was down to Populus weighting by turnout and YouGov not doing so – we’ll have to look at the tables for this one to see if it’s the same.

ComRes also have some interesting follow up questions (though as ever, they are all asked as agree/disagree!). On leader ratings there is a sharp drop for Ed Miliband since last month. In May 22% agreed he was turning out to be a good leader, 39% disagreed (a net rating of minus 17), now only 18% agree he is a good leader, with 45% disagreeing. As with the weekly YouGov/Sunday Times ratings, public opinion seems to be firming against Miliband. 17% of Labour voters agreed with the statement that the Labour party were unelectable with Miliband as leader.

ComRes also asked if people thought David Miliband, Ed Balls and Yvette Cooper would make better leaders. As in the YouGov/Sunday Times poll last week, very few people thought Ed Balls or Yvette Cooper would be any better, but did tend to think David Miliband would make a better leader.

ComRes also asked if people thought the NHS would be safer under Labour than the coalition – surprisingly given that Labour normally lead on the NHS, only 34% agreed with 37% disagreeing.

UPDATE: one thing to note about the ComRes NHS question – I’ve seen some people tweeting that it shows that people trust the government more than Labour on the NHS. It does not show this.

The question found 34% of people who agreed that Labour would be better than the coalition on the NHS, and 37% of people who disagreed. It does not follow that those 37% necessary think the coalition would be better, they just don’t think Labour would be better. Some of those people will be those who disagree with the statement because they think the coalition and Labour are equally bad (or equally good).

The actual picture could, just for the sake of argument, be 34% who think Labour would do better, 10% who think the coalition is better, and 27% who think they’d be the same as each other. With the question here it is impossible to tell. (Hence why it’s often better to ask slightly more complex questions than agree/disagree!)

UPDATE 2: The full tabs are here. They are very odd – the final VI figures there have others on 39% and total to 124%, which is obviously wrong. I expect it’ll turn out to just be a problem with producing the tables, but thought I should flag it up!

UPDATE 3: It is indeed just a problem with coding the tables. VI figures are correct.


56 Responses to “ComRes/Indy on Sunday – CON 37, LAB 37, LD 11”

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  1. Bill Patrick

    I can see that four years of a competent team and no huge mistakes contrasted with mean-spirited unremitting negativity for opposition’s sake would appeal to formerly LibDem voting anti-Cons minded to look elsewhere.

    It must be the size of regional samples, or the weighting of them, or the application of an uneven and inaccurate average to a national vote with strong regional characteristics that caused the under-estimation of the SNP’s vote.

    The swing over such a short period with no obvious new cause is significant. If it is the case that many only decide when they get to the polling station, then opinion polls are a waste of time for the deluded.

    At least for the next time, neither Labour, SNP nor LibDem are as regionally unbalanced as they were previously, so maybe national average swings are not so clearly unreliable as they were.

    I didn’t believe the large Labour majority over SNP that was forecast, but then I wouldn’t have believed the actual result either if anyone had predicted it. I thought the likely for NET change in any regions was small, and much of that would not affect the balance between SNP/LAB.

    In my own region I thought that the SNP would convert list places to constituencies, leaving the Greens and perhaps Labour to benefit from LibDem losses. As things turned out, the SNP regional vote far exceeded expectation and two list MSP’s were elected.

    One of them heard the result after he left the count to drive home and had to drive off the road to recover from the shock when he heard he had been elected.

    On the other side of the country, the last List MSP to be elected turned up to the count in casual clothes, not expecting to have to make a victory speech from the platform.

    That’s a 1948 situation not a 1997 one.

    The list candidate who was unexpectedly disappointed was the one who was bumped off the list by unexpected constituency wins in the region.

  2. John B. Dick,

    It’s a fallacy of aggregates to explain the SNP boom in terms of the collapse of the Lib Dems. Labour’s losses of heartland seats in the central belt were due to a movement from Labour to the SNP, not the Lib Dems to the SNP. So, while at the national level there was little movement from the Lib Dems to the SNP, on the ground there were many many seats where previous Labour strongholds just collapsed.

    Perhaps an incumbent SNP government simply got people in the central belt considering them as an alternative to Labour. At that moment, there were no longer any safe Labour seats.

  3. So Cal Liberal,

    Even if the fundamental changes took place gradually over 2007 to 2011 yet were hidden by the polls due to the lack of media focus on the SNP up until the campaign, we still need an explanation of why so many otherwise immovable Labour voters abandoned the party.

    I suppose one could compare 2007 to 2011 as a “taster” of SNP government. People in Labour heartlands had their first sample of the SNP and liked it.

  4. Bill Patrick

    You are right, but Peter Kellner and Labour voters seeking comfort don’t see it that way.

    As many Highland ex-LibDem anti-Cons preferred Labour as dissatisfied ex-Labour anti-Cons in Glasgow and the central belt moved to SNP.

    It isn’t difficult to see why almost the whole anti-Con vote in the huge LibDem majorities took a punt on the SNP even where they were in third place. The worst that could happen would be to let in a real Conservative instead of a LibDem conservative ally.

    There may be a few more to peel off the next time where the Cons are in second place.

    Nor is it any surprise that about a third of the former LibDem voting anti-Cons preferred Labour, for that’s about the proportion of the general population that are strongly anti-independence.

    What’s interesting is that the Labour vote in the central belt has been shown to be soft. All 15 SP FPTP seats are n marginals.

    Previously Labour-voting anti-Cons must have included all of the following, but we don’t know how many there are of each, or how many positively vote for Labour (whether as it is now, or as they fondly remember it):

    1 those who were content with Labour as the anti-Con vote of choice or, were strongly opposed to encouraging independence;

    2 those who transferred to SNP either because they thought the SNP would win; or at least it could do no harm to vote SNP, because Cons were in third or fourth place;

    3 those who couldn’t believe anybody but Labour could ever win, and voted for them simply because only Labour could reliably beat the Conservative.

    The third group were wrong, wern’t they? I might well have been one if them myself had I lived in some constituencies.

    The important lesson for the SNP now is that it would be wrong to assume that their support has reached an all time peak. The third group can be persuaded not to make the same mistake again.

    Not only that, but among the non-voters there are others like them who were assuming that Labour didn’t need their vote. Some of them are potentially available to the SNP next time.

    The lost LibDem votes were maybe two-thirds or three quarters plain anti-Cons, not at all picky about who they vote for so long as it isn’t a Con or going to let in a Con. The others were Anti-Con/anti-SNP voters.

    Within Labour, there may be a split in the same proportions. It is also likely that Labour has more positive voters than the LibDems, especially in the industrial West.

    Having said that, if UK Labour continues to drift to the right or exhausts the loyalty of its oldest members, either resurgent socialists or the Greens will chip away at the edges of the Labour iceberg.

    Some large pieces have fallen off already, sunk below the surface and drifted away. The core is hollowed out.

    The next stage is catastrophic collapse.

    The SNP need to

    1 avoid sex with minors and animals
    2 avoid questionable financial deals
    3 avoid impractical dogma inspired policies dreamed up by right-wing Oxbridge think tanks
    4 avoid doing anything that isn’t boring, obvious and commonsense

    The rest they can leave up to the UK governments and there will be enough differentiation in the market for them to get the level of support Communist and third world dictators used to get.

  5. Bill Patrick @ SoCal Liberal

    “we still need an explanation of why so many otherwise immovable Labour voters abandoned the party”

    The biggest losers weren’t the LibDems, but the pollsters.

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