Tonight’s YouGov poll for the Sun has topline figures of CON 35%, LAB 43%, LDEM 11%. It looks as though the bigger Labour leads of up to 8 points that YouGov have shown since the phone hacking scandal hit its peak haven’t quite faded away yet after all.

481 Responses to “YouGov/Sun – CON 35%, LAB 43%, LDEM 11%”

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  1. Valerie –

    “Do you give more credibility to a person’s past vote recall, the nearer in time to when they say they voted?”

    Well YouGov don’t weight by past vote at all so the question doesn’t arise. At an individual level, there is no need to judge anyway. To make up another hypothetical example, say party A got 35% at the last election, but a polling company was assumpting that more people than that were wrongly saying they voted A, and therefore were weighting recalled vote for party A to 37% in their samples. The assumption would therefore be that 2/37ths of the people who told them they voted A were actually wrong, but there would be no need to identify which 2/37th it was.

    “And does a person’s reliability vary according to the party they say they voted for?”

    Yes. Historically people who vote for smaller parties are more likely to “forget” – when the original work on false recall was done few decades back, Liberal and then Lib Dem voters were much more likely to forget. Also, people who voted tactically are more likely to forget (which again impacts on the Lib Dems). Another cause is aligning your recalled vote with your present vote, meaning that people who voted for a party that has since lost a lot of support are more likely to forget (which in this context, should again impact on the Lib Dems!). All in all, over the course of this Parliament we should expect to see the proportion of people who say they voted Lib Dem in 2010 decline.

  2. On vetting Cameron in the clear probably but Coulson has been arrested for improper payments to police, phone hacking and, if rumors from Scotland are correct, may have a perjury charge over him.

    If he is convicted it shows that the vetting done was inadequate and if it was Heywood’s decision then he should consider his position (not Cameron) – the job of the DV is to find out these things.

    The issue for Cameron then becomes judgement and it will depend on the circumstances at the time. My view is clear – if Coulson is convicted to things that Cameron should have found out about then he should resign.

    BI would imagine it would be the same for any PM who appointed a personal advisor found guilty of things that should have been found out before offering the post

  3. Anthony

    “I don’t think anyone has attempted to find out, but my guess is that many or most people genuinely believe they are giving a correct answer and have misremembered in some way)”

    I’m getting on, I know, and I am certain that I have voted for three parties since devolution, but it might have been four. I really wouldn’t like to suggest what party I voted for except in the last two elections.

    I think I have always split my vote for the SP, and I have lived in two constituencies in which the ranking of the four main parties was exactly reversed at the piont when I moved.

    So if I split my vote, how would you treat me as identifying? It should be the list, of course.

    I wouldn’t be so much “genuinely believing as giving a correct answer”, as just guessing.

    When you have adjusted your system to devolution, perhaps you can select a coloured background for a former anti-Con, later an anti-Con/Lab and now also an anti-Lab/Con (Scotland only) with concerns about the competence of the LibDems, and turned off by fundamentalists in the SNP and the Greens, both of whom I voted for last time.

  4. Steve

    that’s interesting, thanks.
    I wasn’t suggesting that the access would have been unlimited though, just that he did have supervised access to them as opposed to no access at all.

    Presumably for this reduced clearance to work in practice everyone dealing with AC would have had to have known his status and what bits of what document they could or couldn’t show him and what could or couldn’t be said in front of him?

  5. I should have said vetting issue in my last post. Sorry all.
    @ DavidB
    Totally disagree with your post. Brown made huge errors on the economy which has hit and is hitting people in their pocket. He has also recently been shown to be a hypocrit over his relationship with NI following his Commons speech at the first statement debate. Confirmed by his non appearance at the second statement debate.

    So far Cameron has just been embarressed and lost some gloss but that is all. Of course as I said earlier if he has lied to Parliament or done something illegal then he should go.

    [Please let’s not have a debate over the relative merits of Gordon Brown! Whether people here think Cameron is damaged or not is largely irrelevent, especially people who support other parties, who aren’t likely to be particularly enamoured of him anyway. If only there were some way of getting a proper steer upon it, say, by asking a representative sample of 1000 or so people what they thought…. AW]

  6. Bazsc

    Do you think if Coulson is convicted the person/people responsible for his SC grade clearance should lose his/their jobs as well?

  7. AW
    Something to look forward to then!

  8. Sorry AW I got cross again. I shall stick to watching the cricket for the rest of the day as a penance. I would love to see a poll as you suggested after say a month.

  9. the other howard

    Pieterson has come good in style today.

  10. @The Other Howard
    Pietersen going well. Account.should be taken though of the misfottune that has befallen the current Premier (team), with the blow to their main asset.

  11. @AW – “what’s happened to false recall since the election… is downright odd – many pollsters seem to be working on the implied assumption that it has ceased to be – but that’s something that needs a chunky post in its own right.”

    Subsequently you say that you would be expecting LD 2010 voters increasingly to “forget” for whom they voted.

    That’s not the downright odd bit is it?

    Can you give us a little clue while we await a longer post?

    I posted a conjecture that some 2010 Cons may be false recalling one year on from the GE, though that is probably wishful thinking on my part. ;)

  12. AW
    ‘I don’t think anyone has attempted to find out, but my guess is that many or most people genuinely believe they are giving a correct answer and have misremembered in some way’


    enjoyed the expression while also enjoying my ginger biscuit you offered at tea for reading your piece to the end.

    On the latter, I am hetero, so it was actually a real biscuit (for Americans’ benefit). :-)

  13. Just heard Greece have stopped all production of taramasalata and homous to avoid a double dip.

  14. Adrian B


    A thread restricted to jokes and actual polling would be a nice change.

  15. The Other Howard

    This is about Government governance and Cameron has been pretty blasé about this. His meetings with NI and his appointment of Coulson raise questions seeing that NI seems to be involved in serious malpractice. Cameron has had an easy ride from the press compared to Brown and why are you so keen that we cannot ask legitimate questions?

    I said the same thing about Blair during Iraq and was disgusted about the fact that he stayed in position.

    Two wrongs don’t make a right.

    As to Alan’s question – possibly. The whole point of vetting is to prevent those who may be a security risk into positions where they have access to sensitive information. It may be that SC just wasn’t adequate and that is the fault who decided it was appropriate or it may be the vetting was badly done

    Do you deny that if Coulson is convicted (and it is still an if) then that would be a problem for No 10 – civil service or PM I cannot say.

    You and others are happy to go on about Campbell but he has, as far as I am aware, been exonerated by public inquiries and never arrested/charged or convicted of a serious offence. I think he should have been sacked at the time for a multitude of things so I am not being partisan about this.

  16. Alec

    “Not really”

    I know you are myopically engaged with all things Coulson at present -but the issue raised to which is responded with laughs was the news that the Labour Party refuses to release details of the contacts diaries with the press, of its last two prime ministers.

    That is the “history” I refered to & the history to which Judge Leveson will no doubt apply himself , whether the Labour Party-current or past-wants him to or not.

  17. Colin

    I hope the honourable judge gets to the botom of it all. Kow towing to Murdoch is just as bad done by Labour as by Tory.

  18. “Or is this board now just a “get Cameron” talk shop.”

    Yes Chou-it used to be Alec’s lonely purpose-but has become quite popular here just now :-)

  19. @Colin

    Why stop at the last 2 Prime Ministers? Why not the two before that?

  20. I have read this site for a couple of years now, but never commented, but I now feel the need due to it becoming a ‘Get Cameron and don’t mention what happened during the Labour years vendetta’. For those who say that it doesn’t matter what meetings Brown and Blair had with NI, I would say that it is very relevant as it would show what meetings were held with them at the time the phone hacking incident was first raised and it would be very interesting to know what they talked about.

  21. The other Howard

    ” had to smile when I saw the bit about Alistair Campbell.”

    Me too :-) :-)


    I don’t know if the terms of reference for Judge Leveson are time related. Will have to check .
    If they are not I guesss Leveson will decide what period of time to examine.

  22. Colin

    We await the inquiries with interest and I am sure there will be bad things to hear for both sides. Hopefully Blair will get his comeuppance but I will not hold my breath. Personally I think neither of the parties will be found to have actively impeded investigations but only time will tell.

    You keep join on about the focus being on Cameron well that is life, not fair! It was the same with the expenses scandal for Labour. The Tories got away quite lightly and the focus was all on Labour cabinet ministers, including some rough treatment for Brown and his cleaning bill whilst the Wisteria removal costs for Cameron were not really discussed.

    When the music stops the person on the floor is the most in focus.

    As to going on about Coulson please tell me why it should not be discussed. Here is a personal appointment of the PM who already has a dubious past, that apparently had warnings given against the wisdom about his appointment, who has been arrested of 2 very serious offenses so far and may be arrested on a third at some point soon. It also looks like the chances of charges against him are high.

    How can you suggest that this is not worthy of continued discussion? If the name was Campbell would you be saying the same things as you say for Coulson. I would!

    Can you remind me of a case in the last 30 years where a senior, personally appointed official of the PM has been arrested (and possibly in the future charged and convicted) for offenses like this. I remember the fuss about Archer’s perjury and perjury may just be one of three offenses Coulson is charged with.

    This is a very big story and Cameron should have avoided it blowing up in his face

    The Coulson story will quieten down now unless there are more revelations until October when we will see if charges are brought

  23. Valerie

    Can see no reference to time span in the Leveson Part 1 Terms of Reference.

    It will be interesting to see which politicians he calls & how far back.

  24. By the way, like Nick Poole, I think it’s quite pathetic the way both Tories and Labour politicians have been guilty of sucking up to Murdoch & co.

    But the scandal has boiled over on Cameron’s watch, he employed Coulson against the advice of many and he is being held to account.

    That’s politics. If you can’t stand the heat….

  25. BAZSC

    “I am sure there will be bad things to hear for both sides.”

    I agree

    “As to going on about Coulson please tell me why it should not be discussed”

    No reason-it was certainly “discussed” here by a veritable phalanx of experts in the protocols of Government Security Vetting !

    “How can you suggest that this is not worthy of continued discussion?”

    I didn’t…..indeed made a modest contribution myself…….which you probably missed :-)

    “The Coulson story will quieten down now unless there are more revelations until October when we will see if charges are brought”

    I agree…..and said so some while ago in the modest personal contribution referred to above.


    “I suppose Sir Gus could tell him off if it was wrong, but that’s about it. Cameron in clear on this one, I think.”

    Cameron has always been in the clear on this one Nick.
    Chief Exec’s don’t do referencing and vetting donkey work. HR or within government I suppose MI6 do that stuff for the Chief Exec/PM. If Coulson had got a dodgy write up and DC had insisted “we take him anyway”, that’s a very different matter. Really it is increasingly obvious that every straw in the farm yard is being clutched by those who hate/fear Cameron.

  27. @Valerie

    “Why stop at the last 2 Prime Ministers? Why not the two before that?”

    An interesting thought indeed. The Murdoch press cheer-led for Thatcher throughout her entire 11 years in office and, no doubt, her dearest Rupert received many favours in return, not least avoiding being referred to the Monopolies Commission when he was busily hoovering up various newspaper titles during the 1980s. My least favourite PM of all time, John Major (his appearance in the otherwise excellent BBC documentary about Ian Botham last Wednesday almost ruined it for me) revelled in Murdoch’s monstering of Kinnock in the 1992 election, only for the beast to turn om him in 1997. His weasly protestations fell, thankfully, on largely deaf ears.

    Yes, the tales Mrs Thatcher and Major could tell, hey?

    (cue a long succession of those damned smiley things!!lol)

  28. Colin

    I did see your contribution but you are also agreeing with comments about this being ‘a get Cameron talkshop’ and criticisms of Alec’s comments about Coulson

    The main domestic news at the moment is what looks like endemic corruption amongst the police and the political classes centered on NI. Cameron, unluckily for him, is dragged into this mainly because of Coulson.

    For those of us who are not supporters of the current Government he has been dissembling and evasive with his answers and so we are trying to make this point when people start saying ‘move on, there is nothing to see here’

    Your sarcastic comments about ‘vetting experts’ are all well and good but as I keep saying others who have more knowledge of this than me and you are incredulous and until today we have had no explanation – and you have to say whatever vetting he went through didn’t do a very good job if he ends up being convicted.

    This story brings new revelations every day – look now at the report about Will lewis’s involvement in setting up Cable.

    As I said it will all settle down soon but I am sure you were part of the frenzy around Iraq where we saw the same amount of evasiveness from another PM. I fear Cameron becomes more and more like Blair every day.

    I am sure when the next thread starts we will move on from this

  29. @BAZSC

    “I fear Cameron becomes more and more like Blair every day.”

    Wasn’t that Cameron’s plan anyway? He is the Heir to Blair, remember.

  30. Valerie & Colin

    Don’t forget Murdoch only got the ability to procure such a significant percentage of the press because Thatcher relaxed (or was it repealed?) the regulations which limited individual press ownership – the kind of regulations in place in the land of the free no less!

    And there are many a cosy phot of the 2 of them together.

    If this was a how-much-political-influence-does-Murdoch-have inquiry Leveson should go back as far as Thatcher. I suspect it could open another thread of real embarressment for the Tories. Alas that isn’t the inquiry’s remit.

  31. @BAZSC

    If Coulson is charged found guilty of a criminal offence then Cameron has already said he will make a full apology for an error of judgment and expect Coulson to receive the full weight of the law. He has already said “That with hindsight etc etc…… st the time of the second statement.

    At the time of his first statement to the House he said that Coulson had worked well for him and that during the course of working together they had become friends. He refused to throw his friend to the wolves as he also said that “He believed in the principle of innocent until found guilty” a view I share and have posted elsewhere. I thought this was an admirable and very unusual attitude for a politician, if risky.

    As it happens I had an exactly similar situation when I worked as an Operations Director. It worked well for me and the person involed did a super job and in the end his past did not cause a problem. Maybe Cameron has not been so lucky but we will have to wait and see if Coulson is charged and found guilty. I do not see it as a resigning issue.

    As far as civil servants are concerned if they followed all the proper procedures over vetting etc without fault then I doubt that they will have to resign either.

    You may not like this answer but this is how I feel about it. I also think this is as totally unbiased as I can be. If the tables were reversed and Ed M was in Camerons situation I do not think I would feel differently. For me it is about how you treat friends, and the principle of innocent until found guilty.

  32. RONNIE

    “such a significant percentage of the press”

    What is your idea of “significant” ?

    NI had 29% of UK newspaper readership before closing NoW.

    Bear in mind 73% of people get their news from TV-& 70% of TV news is provided by BBC.

    The Terms of Reference of Leveson Part 1 require these recomendations to be made :-

    a. For a new more effective policy and regulatory regime which supports the integrity and freedom of the press, the plurality of the media and its independence from government, while encouraging the highest ethical and professional standards; and

    b. For how future concerns about press behaviour, media policy, regulation and cross-media ownership should be dealt with by all the relevant authorities, including Parliament, Government, the prosecuting authorities and the police; and

    c. The future conduct of relations between politicians and the press

    So whilst Leveson has to produce a regulartory regime which “supports” plurality-he is not required to consider the rules of plurality.

    These are for the Competition Commission I assume. The EU is also involved & pronounced in Murdochs favour over the BskyB bid.

  33. The Other Howard

    Thanks for the response.

    I do not agree though I am afraid.

    Coulson was damaged goods before he came in No10 and that should have been taken into account. It would be seen as a colossal lack of judgement from Cameron if there is a conviction and there will be a lot of heat on him – far more that you would have experienced when it happened to you.

    Whether it is enough to make him resign probably depends on the support within his party and what they think.

    On the second point that is more difficult to judge – I still think the reasoning on not giving him the most thorough vetting at the start is extremely weak and will be seen as a grave error if there is a conviction. I think that would require much further explanation. It is not as though he had a clean history would have been out of the blue

    Cameron mentioned that taking on a tabloid error was a risk – my question was what steps were taken to mitigate that risk and at the moment I have seen very few

    The reasoning I am so het up about Coulson is that we have seen over the last 20 years the lack of principle of our leading politicians. It is unprecedented for such a senior official to be in this position and if nothing happens at the political level (as happened with Blair and Iraq) then we will be all the much poorer.

  34. @Colin

    Are you really saying a proportion of 29%, or nearly a third is’nt significant ?
    I’m amazed.

  35. Don’t forget that in Thatcher’s day Murdoch used the Met as his own private thugs to break the printers.

    So maybe the unhealthy relationship between NI and the Met began then.

  36. I think that the terrible attacks in Oslo will remove the phone-hacking story from the press (and quite rightly too).

    This will ease up the pressure on Tory VI and perhaps improve it.
    A note – I am saying that in a non-partisan way. I don’t want to get in to any sort of argument over accusations against any party.
    People rally behind the government in times like these so I would expect a Tory boost – but due to the fieldwork for yougov being on Thur-Fri (IIRC), I can’t imagine it would show until next week’s yougov polls.

  37. @BAZSC

    Let us agree that both of us have honorable reasons for feeling as we do. I can see from where your coming hope you can do likewise.

  38. AW

    I don’t think anyone is attempting to start a debate about the relevant merits of Gordon Brown – the point is he was chewed up by News International and David Cameron’s sins seem much worse.

    [I was intervening before it began! Someone has made lots of critical comments about him, so I stepped in before someone else rebutted them, then someone else piled in to agree with the first person, etc, etc, etc – AW]

  39. @BAZSC

    Sorry should have said “coming from” in my last post.

  40. Valerie

    “Are you really saying a proportion of 29%, or nearly a third is’nt significant ?”

    No -not neccessarily-I was asking what Ronnie thought.

    I’m not sure myself. I am as keen on diversity as plurality -and given the costs involved in producing a newspaper there is clearly a balance to be struck.

    A proprietor who was prepard to maintain a large stable of titles, some of them loss making-but had 50% of total readership?……..probably not.

    A plurality whose threshold was so high that it resulted in an inability to finance low circulation/high quality titles & thus severe loss of diversity & choice?…….probably not.

    I don’t think it is as easy as just picking a number-though I presume a number has to be picked .

    I believe that the rules surrounding plurality are to be reviewed.

    By the way-until we know where the former readership of NoW has gone , we cannot say what NI’s % is-but it certainly isn’t 29% any longer.

  41. The Other Howard

    Thank you for the courteous response.

    It is clear we will not agree at the moment but it will be interesting to see in a year where this has taken us and what has happened. I think we are probably not as far a part as it seems – it is just the current perspective based on limited information that differs

  42. @The Other Howard

    You say Andy Coulson is “Innocent until proven guilty”. Do you mean proven guilty beyond reasonable doubt or on the balance of probabilities?

  43. @ Valerie
    Nice to hear from you. I mean innocent until proved guilty as in a court of law. I hate the whole “witch hunt thing ” which is why I get so cross on this issue. It’s a moral issue for me.

  44. @BASZC


  45. THe events in Norway are awful.

    The bomb was bad enough-but if reports are to be believed, the shooting at the island youth camp has had a terrible outcome.

    If the two events are connected it becomes very serious.

    THoughts with all Norwegians tonight.

  46. @The Other Howard.

    Fair enoughski. I won’t say any more on the topic. I don’t want to raise your blood pressure! :-)

  47. Interesting poll from yougov/economist (haven’t seen anybody mention it – apologies to AW if he’s going to blog about it)-
    Poll is about trust, how much you trust different groups –

    Journalists of various types –
    BBC Journalists +21 (53 trust, 37 don’t)
    ITV +1 (47, 46)
    Upmarket newspapers (Times, Guardian, etc) -23 (35, 58)
    Mid-market newspapers (Mail, Express) -61 (16, 77)
    Red-top newspapers -82 (6, 88)

    The final group shouldn’t be a surprise at all considering the NOTW scandal – although trust in red-top journalists has only fallen 8% since 2003, so perhaps not fully explained by NOTW.

    My Local MP -19 (36, 55)
    Although subsamples should be taken with a pinch of salt, Tories are much more likely to trust their MP (+1) than Labour voters (-20).

    Leading Labour politicians -33 (35, 68)
    Leading Conservative politicians -48 (22, 70)
    Leading LibDem politicians -55 (18, 73)
    Again, shouldn’t really be a huge surprise considering the position of the LibDems and the current scandal hitting the Tories.

    Changes in trust since Aug 2010 (only the trust figure, not overall trust/distrust) –
    Leading Labour politicians +2
    Leading Conservative politicians -7
    Leading LibDem politicians -9

  48. Ah – I have misread, I should quickly point out.
    It’s not how much you trust them, but how much you trust them to tell the truth.

    That’s actually quite an important distinction.

  49. @ Valerie

    Don’t worry, I keep taking the tablets.
    Off to see a film
    Weekend polls will be interesting

  50. There’s also a poll from Chatham House/yougov that has quite a lot of questions –
    http ://

    Quite a bit to go through so don’t expect any analysis from me. ;)

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