Full tabs from the YouGov/Sunday Times poll are now up here, asking about the normal sort of grab-bag of subjects that the Sunday Times normally choose when the news agenda hasn’t been eaten by a single topic like the riots!

There is very little support for putting British troops on the ground in Libya, even post-Gaddafi. Only 22% would support troops being deployed to help the new regime. Neither is there much support for any intervention in Syria – only 21% of people would support a Libya-style intervention in Syria.

On taxation, YouGov asked about various tax cuts (and in one case, tax increase) that have been mooted. The most popular proposals were cutting VAT and fuel duty, both supported by 86%. A married couples tax allowance was supported by 66% of respondents. Abolishing the 50% rate was only supported by 23% of people, with 59% opposed. The Lib Dem idea of a “mansion tax” was supported by 63% of people.

On petrol prices, YouGov asked whether people thought the oil companies themselves were taking advantage of the public with high prices – 52% of people thought they were, 36% thought the fault lay with world oil prices and the government’s taxes.

The recent deal with Switzerland on taxing private bank accounts was seen as a good deal for Britain by almost two-thirds of people (65%), with 11% thinking it was a bad deal. 40% of people thought it was acceptable for British people with Swiss bank accounts to still remain anonymous, 45% thought it was not acceptable.

In the benefit questions, people are evenly split on whether cuts to benefits are too large (28%), about right (26%) or not large enough (27%). On the specific policy of capping housing benefit, 75% supported it “even if this means people are forced to move house if they live in an area where the rent is high” (broadly comparable to when YouGov asked a similarly worded question last November for Channel 4). 56% of people think that EU citizens should not be allowed to claim benefits in other countries, 30% think they should.

Finally on planning, people are evenly split over whether current planning laws are too relaxed or too restrictive – 23% think it is too easy to build, 20% too difficult, 33% that it is about right. On the principles of the government’s proposals to simplify central planning rules, give more power to councils and have a presumption in favour of development, 54% support and 21% are opposed. However, asked about the National Trust’s criticisms of the proposals, 44% back the NT and think the change will pose a risk to the countryside, compared to 25% who think the NT are exaggerating.

This is broadly what I would expect on a subject where most people will have little or no detailled knowledge – neutral options on the status quo, a broadly positive reaction to things that sound good on the surface like simplifying and devolving power, but when faced with opposing claims from the government and a charity, people are going to tend to back the charity over the politicians.


375 Responses to “More from the YouGov/Sunday Times polls”

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  1. @ Stuart Dickson

    I wonder when we will witness an English Enlightenment?
    —————————————–
    The CofE used to be known as the Tories at prayer but since the present head of the church seems to be a bit of a leftie, I’d say their church is a bit more enlightened than it used to be. ;-)

  2. Amber

    “the present head of the church [of England] seems to be a bit of a leftie”

    That’s Lizzie you’re talking about! :-)

  3. @ Old Nat

    “Labour in Scotland didn’t vote to charge English students more than students from other EU countries.”

    …was simply my response to Stuart Dickson taking us for a walk down memory lane regarding the past of the matter.

    The SNP should be looking for ways to approach this differently.
    8-)

  4. SoCalLiberal @ Amber Star

    “The best he can hope for is that Labour, without a Scottish stronghold, is unable to ever win again and that persistent Conservative rule pushes Scots to want independence. Or is that the plan?”

    It’s not so much THE plan as one of several strategies to check mate for the SNP. None of them needs the SNP todo anything incompatible with any of the others, and most of them the SNP need to do very little except run a moderately competent administration and rely on their opponents misjudgements.

    It is not the merits of the case, but my low opinion of the prospects of future governments being able and willing do anything which would stall the drift to independence that I now think it is inevitable.

    It’s too late. There is momentum.

    You may like it or not, but if you might personally or in your employment (DC & Ed M included) have to adapt, then you need to start thinking about it and making contingency plans now.

  5. @ Old Nat

    That’s Lizzie you’re talking about!
    —————————-
    Right enough, I always forget that the Archbishop isn’t head of the CofE.
    8-)

  6. As we’re talking about HM the Queen and Scottish Independence, may I combine the two and ask whether the SNP have plans to change their Head of State if they get political independence?

  7. oldnat @ Amber

    “the present head of the church [of England] seems to be a bit of a leftie”

    That’s Lizzie you’re talking about!

    Yes, she and Alex are good pals.

  8. Amber”

    “The SNP should be looking for ways to approach this differently.”

    They are. They are trying to seek agreement to overturn that EU law, that allows any EU citizen to participate in University education in any other country as if they were a citizen there.

    Some EU countries have high tuition fees. Others have none (or rather that country’s Government pays the fees). It doesn’t seem unreasonable that the Government of a student’s homeland should pay for their education, rather than expecting other taxpayers to fork out instead.

    I’d expect the Murdoch Group papers to be fully on board with that. They constantly whinge about EU “freeloaders” coming to the UK. Why do they want to turn the English into another selfish group of freeloaders living off other people’s taxes? I’ll write to the Times about it! :-)

  9. Pete B

    No.

  10. Oldnat: re the Edinburgh Lib Dem/SNP coalition “It’s actually a LibDem/SNP coalition on everything except the tram project ”

    Oh, please! The SNP are part of the coalition running Edinburgh. They do not – as far as I know – file out of ruling group meetings where the subject is discussed, to be replaced by Labour, Conservative and Green councillors. Imagine the chaos while setting budgets, for example. That’s why the SNP leader was appointed as the ‘tram Csar’.

    The ruling SNP/Lib Dem coalition have been responsible for managing the project for the last 4+ years. They are not seen as having made a good job of it. It would be as well to accept that, rather than turn rhetorical somersaults trying to pretend otherwise.

    The ‘Nothing to dae wi us, likesey’ tactic is not a stance that has any traction with the voters. It squanders whatever credit might have otherwise gone to the SNP and simply adds to the general cynicism about politicians.

    Personally, I’m angrier about the mess they’ve made of the schools but I accept that I may be in a minority there…

  11. The FT is reporting that Cameron’s plans for the boundary changes and seats reductions will be in trouble with Lib Dem and Tory backbenchers looking likely to vote against it.

    Might be an interesting future story. I think the voting on this won’t be until 2013, so I guess a lot might hinge on the state of Cameron’s approval ratings by this stage. If Tories in particular don’t think he is going to survive for long, they’ll see little point in backing him. By contrast, if he looks good for a majority win in 2015 there will be plenty of jobs on offer by the whips.

  12. Pete B

    “As we’re talking about HM the Queen and Scottish Independence, may I combine the two and ask whether the SNP have plans to change their Head of State if they get political independence?”

    No. If there is a popular demand AFTER independence it would be dealt with as it would be in Australia. One thing at a time.

    Following the procedures of the Home Rule parliament It would be open to any and every Scottish Citizen to petition the Scottish Parliament (you can fill in the form online) and ask for a referendum. The Petitions Committee would consider among other things whether there was sufficient reason to suppose it was worth testing Scottish opinion. They could ask Yougov if there was any evidence either way, and they would come to a view.

    Perhaps that view would be to ask the parliament to arrange a referendum.

    Any MSP could initiate a bill. Unlike in the tradition-bound English (now UK) parliament, private members bills are allocated time to be considered and do not fall at an election to be reintroduced anew.

    If it looks to be the popular will, some MSP ill do that. Someone will do it anyway.

    When I interviewed people for a job, the first thing I wanted to know was “Have you done this sort of work before, and how did you get on?”

    I think the Queen of Canada has some experience behind her in the matter of constitutional transition and may be the only person around who has. Google “Statutory Instrument Queen French Canada” and you’ll see what I mean.

    I don’t think she does Gaelic, but the Duke of Rothesay is better at it than I am.

  13. @ Old Nat

    They are. They are trying to seek agreement to overturn that EU law, that allows any EU citizen to participate in University education in any other country as if they were a citizen there.
    ———————————————
    EU citizen education is a great idea but if there is no central EU funding for Universities or Students then the status quo is unworkable & something must change.
    8-)

  14. Land o’ Cakes.

    Go read the Edinburgh Coalition Agreement.

  15. Amber

    “EU citizen education is a great idea but if there is no central EU funding for Universities or Students then the status quo is unworkable & something must change.”

    (As so often) we are in complete agreement. However, I have to take exception to your constantly phrasing things better than I do! Please desist. :-)

  16. @ Alec,

    IMO, Coalition MPs will vote for equalising constituency ‘sizes’ & I believe that Tory & Dem feet would scarcely touch the floor when rushing to vote for it! The Coalition should change tack & go for this option before it’s too late for the BC to change to ‘equal sized’ constituencies based on the existing number of seats.
    8-)

  17. AW

    Do you have Comments Policy on turning this site into a Scottish Independence, site I read your intro and there was no mention any polls from Scotland

  18. John B Dick

    Thanks for the detailed reply.
    I suppose in theory the Queen could refuse Royal Assent to a bill replacing her, though I doubt in practice that she would. I assume Royal Assent applies in your country?

    Amberstar

    “EU citizen education is a great idea but if there is no central EU funding for Universities or Students then the status quo is unworkable & something must change.”

    Quite agree with most of that, but something being unworkable doesn’t mean it will change – look at the West Lothian question for instance.

  19. Roger Rebel

    You clearly failed to notice that the YouGov poll contained questions about University funding in Scotland compared with England.

    Now, I will accept that Pete B was moving discussion from on topic Scottish matters by asking a courteous question, to which I supplied the briefest possible answer.

  20. @ Old Nat

    Thank you, that’s a very nice compliment but you are no slouch either, when it comes to expressing yourself well. 8-)

  21. Looking at the headlines for tomorrow,Libya is already
    second place.I think that any poll boost from this will be only temporary,and the latest you gov was an outlier.IMHO.

  22. Oldnat
    You lot were talking about Edinburgh trams and various local Scottish coalition things before I stuck my oar in. I refuse to take the blame! :)

  23. @ Pete B

    Quite agree with most of that, but something being unworkable doesn’t mean it will change – look at the West Lothian question for instance.
    —————————————–
    I have looked at the West Lothian question, it is right on my doorstep… which devolved areas of government do you particularly object to the MPs of Scottish constituencies voting on?
    8-)

  24. @Pete B – “You lot were talking about Edinburgh trams and various local Scottish coalition things before I stuck my oar in. I refuse to take the blame!”

    I thought we had an agreement that we could talk together about anything but if you wanted to discuss Edinburgh trams you were on your own?

    @Ann (In Wales) – if there is a boost, my guess is it won’t last beyond September 7th

  25. Pete B

    “Trams” For that you have to blame SocalLiberal! :-)

    These American rebels are nothing but trouble. They should have remained quiescent colonials.

  26. Alec

    “if you wanted to discuss Edinburgh trams you were on your own?”

    But if there was ever a Green issue ….. :-)

  27. For the last few days I have been singing the same song about the need for polls to give us some inkling as to how if at all the SP churn will affect the UK election balance of the parties.

    The nature of the next UK government could in the hands of a handul or two of SNP MP’s and the effects could be more keenly felt and argued about in England than in Scotland.

    It is the English, not the devolved, who need an answer to the West Lothian Question.

  28. @Oldnat – read the agreement…..

  29. Amberstar
    “which devolved areas of government do you particularly object to the MPs of Scottish constituencies voting on?”

    I object to them voting on matters that concern the rest of the UK but not Scotland, as John B Dick says. These include Education and Health to name but two.

  30. Pete B @ John B Dick

    “…in theory the Queen could refuse Royal Assent to a bill replacing her, though I doubt in practice that she would. I assume Royal Assent applies in your country?”

    Yes it does, but it would be the breach of a habit of a lifetime. That was my point about experience, and getting a job done by someone who has done it before. Many times, in this case.

    I think there are understandings from a meeting between the Duke of Rothesay and the SNP leader several years ago. Mind you, neither may not remember much about it as they also discussed the Duke’s fine stock of IrnBru or some other local beverage of similar colour.

  31. @ChrisLane1945

    “Off out to celebrate United”

    Anthony, my good man, will you please moderate this appalling outbreak of partisanship. Chris has just uttered the most offensive sentence I have read on these pages since I started reading them some 20 months or so ago! lol

  32. oldnat
    SoCalLiberal

    “But now you, a Scotsman, know better. ”

    I’m always keen to learn!

    “But I think that it’s a mistake to give up on a mass transit plan or project simply because mistakes were made.”

    I agree. There has been a lot of political posturing in the whole tram project (by all sides, I hasten to add!) but there are lots of signs that having come this far, it won’t be abandoned.

    The Labour leader in Edinburgh is now apologising about having put forward the motion to end the line at Haymarket.

    Despite Labour posturing about the “SNP/Lib Dem coalition” (as they put it – it’s actually a LibDem/SNP coalition on everything except the tram project where the LDs had Labour support), the blame will be thoroughly attached to the Unionist parties, before the SNP Government ride to the rescue and manage the rest of the contract competently.

    AmberStar @ John B Dick

    “Yes, those circumstances would create a huge dilemma for Labour, no doubt about that.

    I could speculate about what I’d like Labour to do in those circumstances but I honestly don’t know what we would do.”

    I’ve no Idea either what they should do, and that may well be domething different..

    My essential point is the best time to find an answer is not the day after you have been up half the night watching the election results come in, and we have no polls to give us an idea of the way things might be going.

  33. Crossbat11

    However, he may be forgiven for his enthusiasm.

    Ayr United beating Raith Rovers will mean there’s no dancing in the streets of Raith tonight (and one G Brown will have a deeper glower than ever!)

  34. John B Dick
    “I think there are understandings from a meeting between the Duke of Rothesay and the SNP leader several years ago”

    This is getting a bit hypothetical now, but as the Duke of Rothesay is also Lord of the Isles, I suppose he could encourage his people there to revert to the pre-1493 position and declare independence from Scotland. Personally, I’m a Mercian Nationalist, and would like to throw off the English yoke as well :)

  35. Pete B

    “These include Education and Health to name but two.”

    The problem really lies in the Barnett consequentials for a Block Grant to Scotland/Wales/Northern Ireland based on whatever England decides to spend (or not spend) on its domestic affairs.

    While that might have been (I’m not saying it was) an appropriate mechanism for funding a devolved Scottish/Welsh/Northern Irish administration prior to 1999, it is clearly a nonsense within any politically devolved/federal/confederal system.

    The good governance of these isles does actually matter and finance is a critical issue. It deserved better planning than was given to devolution at the time, or since then.

  36. Oddly enough though this evening’s earlier discussions may seem a little remote from politics, religion is about to enter the political arena. The Guardian reports that:

    The Department of Health confirmed that it would change the rules to ensure abortion counselling was offered “independently” of clinics that conduct terminations. Its announcement was made in advance of an attempt next week led by the Tory backbencher Nadine Dorries to amend the health and social care bill to force such a requirement

    Now there are a number of reasons to find this distasteful:

    * It is not deemed necessary that any other medical procedure have “independent” counselling.

    * The other counselling agencies such as LIFE are hardly independent – their financial security depends on their success in dissuading women from having abortions. More so than those charities linked to abortion clinics depend on them.

    * It is being attempted to sneak the changes through without any debate in Parliament. It is being pushed by something called the “Right to Know campaign”. Dorries claims not to know how it is funded but says it represented “hundreds” of people and was run by a lobbyist. She would not reveal the lobbyist’s name, or the other organisations the lobbyist represents

    * As Dorries herself admits the aim is to prevent terminations happening – she reckons this would cut them by 30%. But that implies that women are very easily swayed to have abortions – sort of the medical equivalent of chocolate or shoes. On that logic they should be readily available on the High Street. What it’s really about is trying to prolong the period before a woman can have a termination, hoping things can be dragged out till a woman is forced to change her mind. In the article Dorries is quoted as saying “The abortion process is so fast – 7-14 days”. Can you imagine any other medical procedure where you are forced to wait that long before your decision will be accepted?

    * Dorries and her allies seem keen to have another 60,000 babies born each year who will either be damaged in some way or born to mothers who feel unable to cope with them. Presumably they will be fighting even harder for greater monetary and non-monetary support for single mothers, large families, disabled children. I must say I haven’t noticed so far. In truth such people are the exact political equivalents of deadbeat dads – they want to have their fun and force their decisions on other people but they don’t want to deal with the consequences.

    Now the British public are very supportive of a woman’s right to choose to have a termination. Just under 80% think abortion should be legal in all or most cases and this support is equally split across ages, sex, voting intention and region. And yet the government seem keen to go through with this restriction, despite it may appear sneaky, nasty to women, hypocritical and linked to shadowy lobbyists. And seeming to be at the beck and call of Christian fundamentalists may not play well with the public. As was once wisely said “We don’t do God”

    There is also the possibility of revolts, not just from the Lib Dems but from Conservatives as well. There has even been a rumour that this is set up to distract possible revolts from elsewhere in the health bill. Unfortunately revolts don’t work like that, like chocolates, you want to eat the whole box.

  37. To add tonight’s compulsory Scottish dimension to the above screed, abortion is actually a retained power under devolution – Westminster still makes the decisions. But would any changes inserted in the Health Bill apply? Would changes made in DoH rules apply other than in England? Has anyone even thought this through?

    Sorry can’t link trams in.

    I also can’t help noticing that the Heath Bill will be going through the Commons before the Lib Dem Conference (report stage is 6 September). Is the coalition scared of pressure from that and will there be repercussions?

  38. @ Old Nat

    “But if there was ever a Green issue ….. ”

    I guess this is where I am a quasi Green.

    If Devolution had not occurred, who would be planning the Edinburgh tram and who would be in charge of managing its contruction and overall operation?

    When I think about my own transportation issues, there are several layers of government to work through. Because local government is facially in charge of the metro and they come up with and plan stuff for it and operate it. But they often rely on federal funds to operate their system and there are federal laws that come into play as well. For example, there was a federal law (thanks to my Congressman) prohibiting metro tunnelling through a large part of my city, effectively shutting off any westward subway expansion.

    I would imagine though that you guys might have something different (you might have a transportation secretary who handles things like that).

  39. @ Roger Mexico

    If Ms Dorries would mount a concerted campaign to: support single mothers; & have her colleagues & ‘friends’ in the media cease trying to:
    make single mothers homeless,
    poverty stricken,
    work-seekers when their children are young, discriminated against in the tax system by those who favour marriage…
    oh & decried as feckless breeders of feral, fatherless children…
    I would have considerable sympathy for her view: It is a huge decision which women should not make without getting all the best advice they can in the often limited time window where choice is open to them.

    As it stands, she can… well she can count on my campaigning against her plan.
    8-)

  40. @ Roger Mexico

    Sorry can’t link trams in.
    ———————————
    Ms Dorries is trying to railroad this through but we will cut her off at Haymarket – figuratively speaking, of course.
    8-)

  41. @ Old Nat

    The man convicted of the Lockerbie bombing has been found apparently comatose in a palatial villa in north Tripoli.

    Abdelbaset al-Megrahi is slipping in and out of a coma and only being kept alive with oxygen and an intravenous drip, according to relatives attending him at the property, which they said had been ransacked by looters who plundered all his medicine.

    Megrahi, last seen at a televised rally in Tripoli last month alongside Muammar Gaddafi, was tracked down by CNN international correspondent Nic Robertson.”He appears to be a shell of the man that he was, far sicker than he appeared before … at death’s door,” Robertson said.
    —————————————–
    Vindication of the SNP’s decision to release Al-Megrahi, do you agree?
    8-)

  42. @ Amber Star

    “Vindication of the SNP’s decision to release Al-Megrahi, do you agree?”

    Yeah, I suppose so. I still don’t think he should have been given compassionate release. But I don’t want him extradited to the United States. I just think there are certain things that should be refrained from.

  43. Megrahi was discovered as the Libyan rebels’ National Transitional Council (NTC) ruled out extraditing him to Britain. The justice minister, Mohammed al-Alagi, said: “We will not give any Libyan citizen to the west. Megrahi has already been judged once and he will not be judged again. We do not hand over Libyan citizens. Gaddafi does.”
    —————————————-
    It looks like Yvonne Fletcher’s killer will not be extradited to the UK; he will be tried in Libya or not at all.
    8-)

  44. @ SoCaL

    I would not have allowed Al-Megrahi to go back to Libya, I would’ve had him under house/ hospital arrest in Scotland & allowed his family to come here.

    I guess that could have raised security issues though, if somebody tried to seek revenge against him or his family.

    I am of the opinion that the ‘hero’s’ welcome given to Al-Megrahi played more than a small part in the Uk & US decision to back Sarkozy’s intervention & breech the UN resolution in order to pursue regime change.
    8-)

  45. Roger Rebel,

    – “Do you have Comments Policy on turning this site into a Scottish Independence, site I read your intro and there was no mention any polls from Scotland”

    As the Referendum draws closer, I think that you’ll find that most UK politics blogs will become utterly consumed by the matter. What you are witnessing now is just the first splashes on the shore of the looming tsunami.

    Indeed, it would be very, very odd if blogs on UK politics (and not just politics blogs) did not become forums for debate on the very dissolution of the UK itself. N’est ce pas?

  46. Some topics transcend politics and polling. Now, this is what I call headline news: Scotland have won the football World Cup!

    http://news.scotsman.com/scotland/Scots-footballers-lift-World-Cup.6827012.jp

  47. New Martin Baxter prediction for next UK GE:

    – “The new national prediction is that Labour will have a majority of 20 seats, winning
    335 seats (down 22 seats since 1 August). ”

    http://www.electoralcalculus.co.uk/

    Note: his website has had a freshen up.

  48. CrossBat11 and OLD NAT

    Good Morning as summer comes to a close, the autumn beckons, and school term approaches, while Manchester rules the football in God’s land.

    Old Nat, returning to robust exchanges some weeks ago on education (which you mention above), I believe that the key to improving English culture is in our schools.

    The proof (and a cause) of the systemic failure and real mistreatment of so many of our young people is that politiicians from all colours agree when it comes to their own children.

    A poster on this site, himself, describes our former school as a war zone. He is correct. This school is the best in the borough.

    I was moved when I saw the GCSE results celebration from a school in Peckham, a school with a very high proportion of black pupils. Results were excellent.

    So it can be done. Church school of course,

    A note on religion and partisan ship: ‘If ye are lukewarm, I will spit thee out of my mouth’ (REV)

  49. @oldnat – “Ayr United beating Raith Rovers will mean there’s no dancing in the streets of Raith tonight (and one G Brown will have a deeper glower than ever!)”

    At least he can take comfort from the state that East Fife are currently in. Terrible start to the season for us.

    @Amberstar – I was thinking the same thing about Al Megrahi and the SNP. I’m also rather pleased the new Libyan government seems to be deciding for itself what it wants to do with it’s accused citizens.

    On abortion – I worried when I read the headlines on this story. If the numbers of a 60,000 annual reduction are true, then it will mean we need to face the fact that we have to find the equivalent of one new Weymouth every year to cope with the rise in numbers. And that’s on top of the new Southhampton needed every year to deal with the increase in net migration.

    The complacency with which we are dealing with population growth is staggering. We haven’t even now got Edinburgh trams to provide temporary sleeping places for people. (See Roger – that’s how you do it).

  50. I’m interested in seeing how the “make abortion harder to get” agenda fits snugly with the anti-single parent, broken families agenda.

    Should be some promising doublespeak ahead.

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