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. COLIN

    I feel inappropiate responding, considering the events in Norway.

    I’m answering because you have asked……but it’s trivial in the context of Norway’s events….truly sad!

    My answer……

    1 man owns 29% of a media and you use an argument to ignore this because of some survey claiming people get their news elsewhere (the who, when & how of this survey would be of interest btw).

    The last time I looked the Sun claimed that 8 million people read their paper (survey based again I suspect – but you feel it’s valid enough to quote a 73% figure)….even though they sell about 2.5million. Make a similar extrapolation on the rest of their papers and a lot of people are bing ‘informed’ by Mr Murdoch.

    If this % wasn’t a problem why were such laws in place? Why are such laws still in place in many democracies around the world? Why would the country that has free-speech enshrined into its constitution retain such a law – USA of course. Maybe they all see/saw the danger of 1 man’s over-arching opinion stifling informed debate / democracy……maybe even how the outcome can be propoganda and corruption (Bellusconi is the next step on from Murdoch’s media power).

    If Thatch hadnt given Murdoch the ability to have the levels of ownership he has now, would any of the past 2/3 weeks ever have happenned….I suspect not. More significantly, I also wonder if the dramatic changes in British society with an ever growing gap between the wealth of the top and bottom would ever have happenned either, since I suspect politics would have been very different.

    BTW: I’m not asking / expecting Leveson to regulate on plurality. I’m not sure how I conveyed I might be looking for that.

  2. Hallo folks. This is off topic, but as there’s no forum (as far as I know) for the posters here, I wondered if I could get some opinion on data gathering and data assumptions / conclusions?

    I’ve been looking at the AV referendum results of late, and wondered what assumptions could be made regarding the people voting “Yes to AV”.

    Is it fair to say that people who wanted a yes result would have been more inclined to turnout, in comparison to people who wanted to maintain the status quo? I appreciate there were widespread differences of turnout across the constituencies (Min of 27.16%, Max of 63.02%, Average of 43.36%), and different areas will have been motivated differently.

    Would the ‘Yes’ people, with polling day nearing and the predictions not looking great have been more inclined to stay away (not bother), or would they have been more motivated to turnout and try to win the day?

    How about the ‘No’ voters?

    Thanks.

  3. Coulson being investigated for perjury alleged to have been committed while he was still employed by Cameron

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2011/jul/22/andy-coulson-investigated-perjury-allegations

    If all the allegations against Coulson are proved true, which I am not sure about as they may have been hyped, Cameron will have real difficulty holding on. Too many questions to answer and loss of credibility about his judgement.

  4. @ RONNIE

    “(the who, when & how of this survey would be of interest btw). ”

    From last December’s OfCom report into News International’s bid for BSkyB.

  5. Statgeek

    If you’re looking at the AV voters, did you see Carman’s analysis of the Significant predictors of Yes to AV vote in the Scottish Election Study?

    +435% Liberal Democrats
    +35% Compromise is good for Parliament
    +24% Education
    +20% Social Grade
    +11% Pro-Independence
    -2% Age
    -36% Women
    -44% Tabloid reader
    -68% Labour
    -68% Conservatives

  6. I’ve read today a No 10 statement setting out the reasoning behind the vetting of Coulson while in government and I have say that on first glance it looks distinctly coherent and a reasonable explanation.

    It looks to me like the incoming government decided their press officers would work differently than their outgoing counterparts, and the security clearance selected, it seems, by the civil servants, arose from that.

    Like many things, it looks like the new government then realised that it had got this wrong and that upgrading the clearance to all the Downing St press people was necessary. To me this looks very like the issue of SpADs – with an inexperienced Cameron thinking he could cut the payroll by reducing the number of SpADs, only to find government wasn’t functioning and increasing the numbers after a few months in office.

    Given this, it looks like there isn’t much news in the Coulson security vetting. I guess the remaining issue is whether Coulson’s resignation was prompted by the fact that he was going through the more rigorous vetting when he resigned. This could well be the vetting working or it could be entirely unconnected, but either way the questions over Cameron’s judgement in appointing Coulson in the first place remain unaffected.

  7. Newsnight is running a fascinating story alleging widespread phone hacking at the Sunday Mirror.

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

    Well at a heavy metal concert tonight, Coulson & Cameron clearly had masses of support……Half the audience were wearing tee shirts with AC-DC emblazoned across the front & the back!

    Apologies if someone has already reported it.

  9. Robert Newark

    :-)

  10. @Alec

    And we should be surprised? Why…? Of course other papers were involved.

  11. A propos of nothing in particular… does anyone know if there has ever (yet) been a perjury trial where the charges were that the perjury was committed at a perjury trial?

  12. Hopefully the conspiracy theorists can now stand down on the vetting issue at least….

    Whilst the NI scandal has been a gruelling experience for all sides, and looks destined to continue awhile, a bit of Friday night levity………I found out yesterday that the person who registered the sunonsunday domain names just prior to NOTW closing down is a friend of mine who works in media, and not part of NI at all. He thought that this scandal might cause NOTW some problems in future but had no idea that it would close a few days later. NI furious at the spiking of their PR, as their big announcement on NOTW was ruined by claims of cynicism. Lawyers have become very acquainted….. :-)

  13. Bluejock

    Great story ;-)

  14. Bluejock

    Maybe your friend should go for a rapid settlement – while NI still has the money to buy the domain names!

  15. @ Colin

    “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.”

    My thoughts are with all Norwegians too. It’s horrifying.

  16. On Coulson’s vetting, here’s somebody not as convinced (gullible?) as me:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/jul/22/andy-coulson-vetting-damp-squib-dynamite

  17. @SoCalLiberal
    SkyNews quoting a Police Official stating that two incidents apparently carried out by the same prrson a 32 years old Norwegian. The source says that the incidents are not linked to Islamist terrorism.

  18. The Other Howard @ BAZSC

    “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.”

    That doesn’t surprise me. It can go wrong, but if it doesn’t, it’s a plus.

    Good to give someone a secon chance (but not a third) but you need to look into thebackground.

  19. Those who are minded to eulogise Murdoch as exercising some benign and philanthropic influence on our print media and broadcasting should reflect on the following:-

    – He didn’t create the newspapers he now owns, he acquired existing, and in most cases, long established titles. There is no way of knowing whether they would have fared better or worse under different owners, although I suspect that they might have become of higher quality had they eluded the clutches of the Murdoch stable, but the idea that he has been a creative genius who has underpinned the British press for 40 years is the purest nonsense. His wealth has enabled him to create a his very own media fiefdom which, in my view, has been to the detriment of our public discourse.

    – He acquired one of the most widely read and famous Sunday newspapers in the world, one that had been going for over 130 years before he purchased it and, within another 40, he has presided over its closure. News of the World RIP. Genius, Rupert.

    – BSkyB, largely his creation, I admit, has monopolised sports broadcasting in the UK on the basis of its enormous purchasing power, robbing millions of viewers who refused to, or couldn’t, pay the subscriptions, of the chance to see their favourite sports. Premiership football was his jewel in the crown, paying over £1 billion to purchase the latest deal and it’s proved to be the epitome of his business model and the key to how he’s sold his satellite dishes. The model goes something like this. Hoover up exclusive broadcasting rights for a sport by paying astronomical fees that no other broadcaster can match and, hey presto, if you want to watch it punters, you’ve got to come to me! Again, the idea that Murdoch has created something here that wouldn’t or couldn’t have been created by an alternative and more benevolent set of providers is poppycock. He’s just got a bigger wallet than anybody else.

    As I argued in an earlier post, he should never been allowed to gain such a hold on our public life. The fact that he has is a result of gross negligence, maybe complicity even, on the part our policy makers, going back as far as the 1980s when he became almost joined to the hip of one of our most famous post-war Prime Ministers. For those who remember those momentous times, it almost felt like a joint Maggie and Rupert project at times. From those days to these, via a succession of craven politicians in between, he has cemented his indelible place in our national life.

    Until now, perhaps.

  20. @SoCal

    Noway’s TV2 says supect.has limks to domestic far right groups.

    Looks like Oklahoma City situation rather than 9/11, 7/7 or 11M.

  21. Alec

    If the perjury has been committed in a perjury trial, then that is not the end.

    There is the Sheridan appeal against conviction, and the original damages claim against the newspaper.

    A rich seam for legal fees, which will go on, and on, and on.

    This whole saga will last longer than Rupert Murdoch.

  22. @The Other Howard
    “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.”

    So did you know your staff had a past because Cameron is implying he didn’t know and still doesn’t know if Coulson has a ‘past’.

  23. The headline of the Sun is a disgrace. Crass, insensitive and inaccurate. Hopefully it will be changed in time for later editions.

  24. @P Brown
    As a Muslim, it does not surprise me that some papers believe that all tertorists have to be Islamist and linked to Al-Qaeda. For them “Noway’s Oklahoma City” or to take the secind incident “Noway’s Derrick Bird”, does not cut the mustard.

  25. @OLDNAT

    That’s an excellent start. Cheers!

  26. Statgeek

    If you haven’t seen the rest of the slides on AV, they are slides 15-20 here

    http://www.scottishelectionstudy.org.uk/docs/Carman_slides.pdf

    The rest are interesting too.

  27. @ RAF

    “SkyNews quoting a Police Official stating that two incidents apparently carried out by the same prrson a 32 years old Norwegian. The source says that the incidents are not linked to Islamist terrorism.”

    Hmmm. It’s still a tragedy either way and my heart still goes out to all the Norwegians. And I will never understand why people carry out such atrocities. It makes me sick to think that this mother****** would go shoot up a summer camp full of teenagers. Even if this guy was carrying out some sort of political attack and/or seeking to make some sort of political statement, why go after kids?

    I think it’s kinda bizarre that he was captured alive too. I remember that whole rash of high school shootings by students in the late 90’s in the U.S. and I think almost all of them were either killed or took their own lives before the police could get to them. I’m surprised that this person did not go out that way.

    I think though that more investigation will be needed. Just because he’s Norwegian doesn’t mean that he was not commiting an act in furtherance of Islamic terrorists. Also, the news seemed to show that this summer camp island was a good distance from Oslo so it’s possible there was more than one person involved.

  28. @ RAF

    “As a Muslim, it does not surprise me that some papers believe that all tertorists have to be Islamist and linked to Al-Qaeda. For them “Noway’s Oklahoma City” or to take the secind incident “Noway’s Derrick Bird”, does not cut the mustard.”

    Most terrorism in the U.S. has been non-Islamic.

  29. @SoCalLiberal

    Norwegian media is pretty unanimous in identifying the guy as a far-right islamophobe freemason with links to neo-nazi groups and a hatred of the government and the left. His name is out there on the net.

    It’s been almost conclusively established that the same person carried out the bombing and the shootings – indeed he lived halfway in between so he even probably had time to go home and pick up weaponry (the two places aren’t that far apart).

    From what I have heard (this is unconfirmed) the reason he was captured alive was that police shot and wounded him.

  30. Scratch ‘halfway’, but he lived roughly on the route between the two. It is a 35 minute drive.

  31. Indeed. The penultimate slide (Multilevel Part Support) provides a sobering idea of the kind of fight that all parties will undertake when it comes to the wording of an independence referendum.

    From that and other sources I have read in the past couple of months, the best thing the SNP can do is deliver sound governance with zero spin. That alone in the modern climate might just win the faith of the floaters (and indeed the politically disaffected who increasingly refuse to vote at all).

    Any party can gain a percentage of the floaters, but there’s 35%-40% voters just waiting to be inspired.

    Getting back to the AV referendum, I’m starting to churn out some data. Nothing startling as yet, but of the 440 voting areas, ten voted yes, but interestingly, eight of the ten were below average turnout, which raises the question of whether the turnout was affected (negatively) by the campaigns or if the 32.1% of the voters voting “Yes” was an inflated figure due to low turnout.

  32. @ RAF

    “As a Muslim, it does not surprise me that some papers believe that all tertorists have to be Islamist and linked to Al-Qaeda. For them “Noway’s Oklahoma City” or to take the secind incident “Noway’s Derrick Bird”, does not cut the mustard.”

    I think it’s unfortunate that you, as a Muslim, have to deal with negative stereotypes and prejudice because of the actions of a deranged few who happen to share very little in common with you (aside from purporting to be of the same religion). I know what it’s like to be subject to unfair stereotypes and so I sympathize.

    Obviously, terrorism can be committed by any group of people for any reason (that’s why having a “war on terror” is beyond stupid because you can’t have a war against a concept). I think that unfortunately too often we shorthand “terrorism” to refer to Islamic terrorism and so I understand why you push for accuracy.

    “Noway’s TV2 says supect.has limks to domestic far right groups.

    Looks like Oklahoma City situation rather than 9/11, 7/7 or 11M.”

    Quite possibly.

  33. @ P Brown

    “Norwegian media is pretty unanimous in identifying the guy as a far-right islamophobe freemason with links to neo-nazi groups and a hatred of the government and the left. His name is out there on the net.

    It’s been almost conclusively established that the same person carried out the bombing and the shootings – indeed he lived halfway in between so he even probably had time to go home and pick up weaponry (the two places aren’t that far apart).

    From what I have heard (this is unconfirmed) the reason he was captured alive was that police shot and wounded him.”

    What a mother******. Thanks for the updates btw cause’ I’ve been too busy today to follow closely (I kinda woke up and saw it on the morning news and kept getting details during the day).

    It’s obviously not justifiable and it’s still wrong but I can kind of understand the mindset behind wanting to assasinate a political leader. You see him as having wronged you or being your sworn enemy or whatever. It’s wrong but there’s some method to the madness. It’s like when rival gangmembers kill each other over various disputes (wrong but there’s some logic to it). But why kill those kids? I can’t even express just how evil that is.

    Political leaders are one thing (not that I would ever condone the killing of an elected or appointed political leader), they accept the risks of political violence when they take office. It’s rare (especially so in Norway) but it’s a risk that’s present. Kids are different. Politically active teenagers are not those who assume the risks of being gunned down for their political activities.

    I guess actually I stand corrected on these spree killers not being taken alive. Because Jared Lee Loughner, who attempted to assasinate Gabby Giffords, was arrested and will probably stand trial whenever he’s found competent to do so. But he was tackled by unarmed civilians when his gun jammed.

    I hope our friend Richard is doing allright and all his family members and friends are safe.

  34. @ Liz Hancock

    Sorry, not correct, like Cameron I did knew the person concerned had been accused of something, but no charges were brought but he left his previous employers under a cloud. I was lucky as I said and the issue under a previous employer did not come back. I still do not know if there had been a real issue as the person concerned has died. An exactly parallel situation. If it had blown up in my face I would react exactly as Cameron has done so far. As I said for me it is a moral issue about friendship and the concept about of innocent until proved guilty.

  35. @ P Brown

    “Norwegian media is pretty unanimous in identifying the guy as a far-right islamophobe freemason with links to neo-nazi groups and a hatred of the government and the left. His name is out there on the net.”

    Political violence is rare in the U.S. but obviously we’ve had some and I can think of an instance of extreme right wing political violence. The most prominent example would be the murder of San Francisco Mayor George Moscone and San Francisco Supervisor Harvey Milk in 1978.

    Dan White, a San Francisco County Supervisor, was an unabashed right wing Republican. He didn’t like being politically outsmarted, he didn’t like the growing influence of gays and lesbians, he didn’t like the liberal direction San Francisco was headed in, and he didn’t like that the Mayor wouldn’t reappoint him to his seat after he had resigned it. Frustrated in his political goals, Dan White decided to handle his problems the old fashioned way. He took his gun, loaded it, snuck into City Hall through an unlocked basement window, and then murdered the mayor and Milk. He was also planning to murder another supervisor, Carol Ruth Silver, and an Assemblyman, Willie Brown, but simply didn’t have time to complete his act.

    Heinous, despicable, horrific, and also quite tragic (especially in the case of Harvey Milk, who finally is being recognized for his historical contributions thanks to the 2008 movie about him, California now has an official designated holiday to commemorate him).

    But even in that case, White came to City Hall, he murdered fellow politicians who he’d targeted and had time to kill before escaping. He didn’t simply murder everyone in site and leave a massive bloodbath.

    White is also famous for his trial that resulted in the coinage of the term “twinkie defense” (which I don’t know if you’ve ever heard before or are familiar with). His defense to murder was that he lacked the requisite intent required for murder because he had been eating a lot of junk food right beforehand. And this apparently negated his intent. He convinced the jury, who convicted him of the lesser charge of voluntary manslaughter and was ultimately sentenced to just 7 years in prison, of which he served only 4 and 1/2. :(

  36. The Norway thing is shocking and a sharp reminder that a single looney can do us a lot of damage and is very hard to protect against.

  37. I looked up “twinkie defence” on wiki (you captured my interest, socal!):

    “Twinkie defense” is a derisive label for an improbable legal defense. It is not a recognized legal defense in jurisprudence, but a catchall term coined by reporters during their coverage of the trial of defendant Dan White for the murders of San Francisco city supervisor Harvey Milk and mayor George Moscone. White’s defense was that he suffered diminished capacity as a result of his depression. His change in diet from health food to Twinkies and other sugary food was said to be a symptom of depression. This defense is a claim that sugary food was not itself responsible for White’s criminal behavior, but rather that it was a symptom of depression, which was the underlying cause. White was convicted of voluntary manslaughter.

    Voluntary manslaughter? That’s like accidently on purpose?

  38. Have you seen the “gay panic” defense?

    The gay panic defense is a legal defense against charges of assault or murder. A defendant using the gay panic defense claims that he or she acted in a state of violent temporary insanity because of a little-known psychiatric condition called homosexual panic. Trans panic is a similar defense applied towards cases where the victim is a transgender or intersex person.

    It seems to me you could create “whatever you dislike” panic defence, if you were so minded.

  39. @Nick Poole

    “Have you seen the “gay panic” defence?”

    It used to be standard issue (and I believe still is) when defending a homophobic murderer. Works all the time.

  40. For now the vetting of AC trail seems to have gone cold. But there are questions remaining.

    One of these IMO concerns the “unnecessary expense” explanation.

    I recall that on becoming PM DC made a big play of cutting back on expenses across gov. It seems to me plausible that AC’s lower level vetting was ‘justified’ on grounds of saving expenditure.

    The other point is that predecessors in the post issue were subject to DV. Indeed, AC’s deputy and replacement have been/are subject of DV.

    I am in no doubt that the permanent sec at no 10 has not lied. But I firmly believe that there is more to this explanation yet to be revealed.

    Had the perm sec been made aware by DC that he had been alerted to possible problems in AC’s background that could pose a potential security issue? If not, why not? (Surely, it was the PM’s duty to alert of any security issue?) And if the perm sec was informed, why wasn’t DV started immediately?

    No 10 has confirmed that AC had access to some top secret information.

    I firmly believe this issue has not yet run its full course.

  41. Strathclyde police have deployed 40 officers to perjury and related enquiries.

    http://www.scotsman.com/news/Scottish-police-launch-perjury-inquiry.6806183.jp

    A long and detailed investigation is expected. Only after that, as I said above, will we see the resolution of the Sheridan Appeal and the original defamation case.

    That could be three or four years away, hardly less.

  42. Mike N

    the fact that the level of security clearance was decided by the Perm Sec seems to take any “guilt” away from the PM.

    One thing though.

    The remark about Alistair Campbell being a factor in the decision seems overtly political and would seem to me to beg some explanation. If there was controversy, who said so, what was it, and why should the perm sec worry about it? Especially as it seems later he decided the level of clearance was too low.

  43. From the Independent:

    Liberal Democrats narrowly missed a shock gain in the latest council by-elections.

    They cut Plaid Cymru’s majority to just 13 votes in a contest for Bangor’s Glyder seat at Gwynedd County, north west Wales.

    In the only other poll this week, Tories coasted home at Remenham, Wargrave and Ruscombe, Wokingham Borough.

    Results

    Gwynedd County – Glyder: Plaid Cymru 207, Lib Dem 194, C 65, Lab 60. (May 2008 – Plaid Cymru 357, Lib Dem 197). Plaid Cymru hold. Swing 13.1% Plaid Cymru to Lib Dem.

    Wokingham District – Remenham, Wargrave and Ruscombe: C 850, Lib Dem 272, Lab 94, Ukip 55, Green 19. (May 2010 – C 2107, Lib Dem 909, Lab 211). C hold. Swing 3.8% Lib Dem to C

  44. Cons win Wokingham……isnt that a bit like Labour win Sunderland?

  45. Nick Poole

    Yes indeed.

  46. Mike N

    In total agreement – this is not yet finished

    I saw the response yesterday and, although it cools things somewhat, it does beg more questions.

    If, as seems possible, Coulson ends up being convicted for something then someone will need to explain in detail why someone who had committed serious criminal offenses prior to taking up the role got through the vetting process

  47. I wonder if the perjury trial might be embarrassing.

    At the time Coulson was allegedly lying to a Scottish court and putting a man in jail he was working for Cameron, who was responding to criticism by fulsome praise and wholehearted support.

    Doesn’t change things much, but the whole “doesn’t he choose dodgy friends?” idea gets entrenched.

  48. On the vetting issue

    I do not believe that the perm sec made a decision about AC’s clearance without having to hand certain information or indeed without having conversations with various interested parties (including probably the new PM).

    The PS’s comments about expenditure and Campbell suggest to me that the PS was ‘obliged’ to listen to and perhaps heed guidance/influence. The PS would then still ‘make’ the decision.

    The Campbell aspect resonates with the comments made by DC during his statement. In itself this may mean nothing.

  49. I haven’t got the stomach to discuss Murdoch and Coulson any more now the full horror of the absolute disaster in Norway is becoming known.

    All I can offer is my sincerest condolences to all those massacred and their their families and friends. I just hope that somehow they can find the strength to come through it, bind their society together and try to eliminate the lunatic fringe responsible. In that sense I wish Jens Stoltenberg, a fine and decent man, and his Labour Government all the very best in the hellish days and months to come. I also hope that the Norwegian Labour Party can find a way too to cope with this horrendous calamity.

    Another example of how blind hatred, intolerance and a complete lack of reason can lead to unspeakably evil acts.

    My thoughts are entirely with the Norwegians now as they try to recover from the evil that this lunatic has visited upon their beautiful country.

  50. @The Other Howard

    I think it is commendable that people are given another chance but l think it is important to be cautious. For instance if someone had been accused of defrauding their company accounts, would you still employ that person in your company where they may have a chance to do the same or would you give them a second chance but in a position where they would not be able to commit the same crime should they be prone to do so? Otherwise you would have to watch them very carefully creating an environment of distrust.

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