There are two new polls out tonight. First up, the daily YouGov poll for the Sun has topline figures of CON 39%, LAB 41%, LDEM 8%, Others 13%. A two point Labour lead is low by YouGov’s recent standards, but not out of line with an underlying average of four points or so.

Secondly there is the monthly ComRes telephone poll for the Independent. Topline figures there, with changes from ComRes’s last phone poll a month ago, are CON 34%(-3), LAB 38%(+2), LDEM 14%(+2), Others 14%. That’s a movement towards Labour, but will to some extent be a reversion to the mean after ComRes’s last phone poll showed a rather unusual Conservative lead. Perhaps more interesting is the 14% for the Lib Dems – their highest score with ComRes since May.


240 Responses to “New YouGov and ComRes polls”

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  1. @ Tinged Fringe

    “Greece should really be the big focus.”

    Agreed, but not only Greece but Cyprus, Italy and Spain. If Greece leaves the Euro that it would be much easier for the others to also leave or to be forced to leave.

    In an earlier thread on 28th Oct, I did point out that it was ‘Ochi Day’ when Greece defied Nazi Germany, France (then defeated and occupied) and Italy. Greek pride has been terribly hurt by the imposed conditions of the first bailouts. This latest tirade against them with some leaders stating they should never have been allowed into the Euro in the first place, was like pouring petrol onto the burning fire of resentment. The proposed referendum may actually buy time for Germany and France to have a rethink and just maybe come up with a more realistic package/timescale.

    @ Martyn

    “Some of you may remember that the worst-case outcome I predicted from a Greek default was an invasion of Northern Cyprus.”

    Sorry to disagree, but Turkey has an army of about 40,000 troops stationed already in the occupied area of Northern Cyprus. They have masses of tanks, artillery and an air force. Turkey is only about the width of the Channel away, you can actually see Turkey from Cyprus on a clear day. More chance of the Isle of Wight invading ….. Scotland?

  2. “These things could of course be regarded as part of the religious symbolatry at St Paul’s”

    One of the aims of the protestant reformation was to remove idolatory: “Since the mid-19th century, Anglican churches have seen a revival of the use of the cross. The crucifix, however, is almost entirely confined to private devotional use.”

    St Paul’s gift shop no doubt does a brisk trade, but “holy water or souvenir crucifixes” are unlikely to be on offer.

  3. @Oldnat

    Yup

    @NickP

    Probably

    @FrankG

    Please feel free to contradict me: I’m hoping to be wrong on this one… :-(

    Regards, Martyn

  4. Anthony,

    YouGov have tweeted a link to their tables as usual but the link to the new look site isn’t working. Normally the link doesn’t work until about 5 past 10 but this one still isn’t. Any chance of a working link please?

    http://y-g.co/vmf2N5

  5. BILLY BOB.

    Anglican friends of mine do not accept they are Protestant.

    And are symbols a sign of idolatory? I do not think so.

    Augustine of Canterbury, for example, did not.

  6. You Gov has 41: 36: 9

    Still very high for Lib Dems, I think

  7. Labour back in front by 6% in tonight’s YouGov with Tory support dropping by 4% from last night’s high. Yesterday’s poll was obviously an outlier and, I don’t know if Anthony can shed some light on this, but the weekend samples seem to be responding differently, and more pro-Conservatively, than the weekly ones. A pattern appears to be emerging.

    Tonight’s poll seems to in line with most of the other major pollsters with maybe Labour a little over-estimated, perhaps.

    The Tory 39% of last night was obviously a nonsense.

  8. ChrisLane.

    You are correct about rearmament. There were very many on the Left who were incandescent about the depths if grinding poverty that their constituents had been pushed into over the previous decade, and this coloured their priorities. No question about that.

    My early arguments were addressed to to fatuous comment that “100% of Labour were against fighting Hitler”. That was a ridiculous and one-dimensional statement. In 1935, the overwhelming majority of the Labour party was in favour of strong action against Mussolini. In 1936, the Labour party was near unanimous in wanting action against Franco.

    IF strong COLLECTIVE action had been taken at either of those moments, it’s possible, perhaps likely that the momentum would have turned against the Fascists.

    Chou derides Labour “hiding behind the LoN”. But that is a fatuous argument, based on the laughing stock of what the LoN finally became. It ignores the counter factual argument that the LoN did not have to become a joke. It could have been a stronger guarantor of peace and enforcer of international law.

    Of course, a key reason that the LoN became an object of derision was that had been emasculated by the supine approach of the UK Govt (and others of course). The UK & France’s answer to Abyssinia wasn’t resolute LoN action. It was the acceptance of aggression by the Hoare-Laval plan.

    Had the UK put some iron into the LoN in 1935 (as Bevin was crying out for) when Hitler was still relatively weak then the rest of the argument would have taken place on totally different grounds.

  9. AW seems to be spot on with his “underlying average of four points or so” in the Labour lead.

    I’m not sure that we’re seeing specific responses from the public to anything. Just wobble around that 4-5 point margin.

    Recently we’ve had a widening Labour lead, then a narrowing to almost parity (largely through the distraction of the Libya campaign and other non-cuts news), then a widening of the Labour lead up to perhaps 7 points. Then a very brief narrowing (so brief I’m not sure it was even real) followed by the slight widening again.

    All leaving pretty much where we were a year or so ago. The only really imposing polling statistic for me is that the poor LDs don’t seem to be able to lift themselves off the floor.

  10. @chrislane1945

    Augustine of Canterbury would have been appointed by Pope Gregory long before the Reformation.

    I didn’t mean to equate symbols with idolatory, rather was trying to point out a difference in the public face and accoutrements associated with Anglicanism.

  11. @CROSSBAT11

    “but the weekend samples seem to be responding differently, and more pro-Conservatively, than the weekly ones. A pattern appears to be emerging.”

    Students (too busy drinking, er…studying to bother with polls).

  12. @Tingedfringe – “It’s all pointless anyway – Greece should really be the big focus.”

    I know you said this in a different context, so forgive me, but in my view Greece is now an irrelevancy.

    We need to do what should have been done eighteen months ago and write off Greek debt and put them out of the Euro. How they choose to rebuild their economy and tax system is up to them. Whatever we think about Greek profligacy (see this report http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/finance/ianmcowie/100012894/fast-cars-and-loose-fiscal-morals-there-are-more-porsches-in-greece-than-taxpayers-declaring-50000-euro-incomes/ for some perspective) it simply isn’t tenable to expect a nation to go through a decade of austerity and still have a debt to GDP ratio of 120% by 2020.

    At some point we need to accept the blindingly obvious and understand that if financial institutions lend money without undergoing due diligence to assess the creditworthiness of the borrower, they will lose their loan.

    the truth is Greece is now irrelevant. It’s going to default, it’s going to leave the Euro, and the world will keep on turning. All efforts now need to forget Greece and focus on Italy primarily, along with Portugal and Spain.

  13. Tonight’s YouGov details:

    Con 35
    Lab 41
    Lib Dem 9
    UKIP 6
    SNP / PCY 4
    Green 2
    BNP 2
    Respect 0
    Other 1

    Approval 29 – 56 = -27

    Tables are here:

    http://cdn.yougov.com/cumulus_uploads/document/2011-11-01/YG-Archives-Pol-Sun-results-011111.pdf

    Non-voters 22%

    Looks back to normal(ish)

  14. @Statgeek

    “Students (too busy drinking, er…studying to bother with polls).”

    Nice one! My youngest son has just started his student life and I gather that he tends to be out of the pollster’s reach during weekend daylight hours. Mind you, I have no idea about his voting intentions. He’s no Tory, but he teases me about possible Lib Dem sympathies. The only preference he’s inherited from his Dad is his passion for football and cricket; the Villa and Worcestershire of course!

  15. @Alec
    “All efforts now need to forget Greece and focus on Italy primarily, along with Portugal and Spain.”

    My worry is that they will be even bigger money-sinks, and we’ll all end up bankrupted. I know the UK is slightly removed, but we will still be badly affected before the euro collapses.

  16. Neil A

    ‘The only really imposing polling statistic for me is that the poor LDs don’t seem to be able to lift themselves off the floor.’

    The LDs gained a point from yesterday; COMRES of course has the LDs on 14%.

    I anticipate that the LDs will be on 12%+ with YouGov and 15%+ with COMRES by the end of 2012, still giving plenty of time before the 2015 GE.

    Only time will tell if I am right.

  17. BILLY BOB.
    Thanks for reply! In the rc church we sometimes say that some anglican churches seem ‘more roman than rome’! For example the Oxford Univ Church. Newman and Keble etc.
    And Anglican clergy who have become rc priests have brought high ritual back, which was removed from the rc church in the 1960’s when I was a boy.. For example in the Bournemouth town centre rc church today.
    Long story.

    LEFTYLAMPTON.
    I agree with all you have said here.

  18. Crossbat11

    ‘He’s no Tory, but he teases me about possible Lib Dem sympathies’

    (Possible) Lib Dem and Worcestershire. Two out of three is not bad.

  19. @Pete B – Agreed. I’m not really talking about bailouts particularly. It needs to be much more fundamental than that. Lack of growth is what is causing the markets to lose confidence, so measures to promote growth without large extra government expenditure are what’s needed.

    All these countries need to leave the Euro. They won’t get growth with currency conditions that effectively represent 30% overvaluation, so they need to remove themselves from this self destructive straight jacket they’ve build for themselves. this would be pretty straightforward in practical terms – only the political humiliation of a dozen or so European leaders currently prevents such a sensible path.

    The resulting devaluations will engineer and effective default on existing debts, with the markets ultimately deciding how big those defaults will be. But it will mean these countries get a chance to compete again while they restructure their government finances.

    This is the scenario that Euro leaders need to start planning for and stop wasting time on Greece. Its a total basket case that can’t be saved. Stop staring at the burning building and start helping those who can still be helped.

  20. Alec

    ‘At some point we need to accept the blindingly obvious and understand that if financial institutions lend money without undergoing due diligence to assess the creditworthiness of the borrower, they will lose their loan. The truth is Greece is now irrelevant. It’s going to default, it’s going to leave the Euro, and the world will keep on turning. All efforts now need to forget Greece and focus on Italy primarily, along with Portugal and Spain.’

    Well said. For the second time in a couple of days I find myself in total agreement with you. I must be going through one of my green phases.

  21. I basically agree with you Alec, but my heart is torn by the sheer horror that the economic mess is going to inflict on Europe. I wonder if for countries like Greece there may have to be some sort of rationing system as for a while money is going to be a completely nebulous concept.

    Those who hold foreign currency (and one has to wonder if the kleptocrats will pay their own salaries in Euros/Dollars – like in Communist countries) will be able to buy whatever they need. Those who hold the replacement domestic currencies will be virtually without purchasing power. Rationing might help protect them. I doubt that a country like Greece is sufficiently honest and organised to make rationing work, however.

  22. @Alec

    I think you’re right about Greece; the real calamity would be Italy or Spain defaulting and the complete implosion of the Eurozone that would almost inevitably follow those seismic events. The Italian and Spanish economies are gigantic in comparison to Portugal, Greece and Ireland’s and, as you rightly say, now we’ve kicked the Greek punchbag into submission, all the focus should now shift to the Italian disaster-in-waiting. There’s no bail-out fund in the world that could handle the collapse of the Italian economy and, in my opinion, there needs to be a new Government in Rome, with a clear mandate for an economic policy based on growth stimulation and some sensible and balanced fiscal measures, mixing tax rises and spending reductions that don’t undermine economic activity and reduce demand.

    Berlusconi is part of the problem and should have no role to play in the solution.

  23. @Statgeek – “If we view both quarters objectively, the pessimists had a right to prophesize doom on Q2, and the optimists have a right to talk up Q3.”

    One point to look out for will be revisions. Q2 was revised down from and initial 0.2%. This made sense, as the negative impacts hit later in the period. As the data from the early part of each quarter is generally more settled and accurate than the latter periods, which is largely estimated, if there are changes in conditions through a quarter these tend to be picked up by later revisions.

    Given the clear picture emerging in Q3 of decent growth early in the quarter in some sectors followed by a sharp slow down as the period went on, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if we see a downward revision of a couple of points in the next announcement.

  24. @neil A – yes it would be painful and the Greeks would have huge problems, but living with austerity for what would be 12 years and then still having a debt ration of 120% will simply be insufferable.

    A new currency would at least mean they would have the facility to compete in export markets, and with plenty of sunshine and a decent tourism infrastructure they would be able to suck in foreign currency via unbeatable tourism prices post devaluation.

  25. @Crossbat,

    Hmm, interesting angle on Italy.

    Berlusconi is certainly part of the problem. But the opposition parties, when they were in government, weren’t significantly better. Italy is afflicted with awful politicians, sad to say. An election isn’t guaranteed to put better ones in power, although it might put more left-wing ones in (which would obviously suit you for general political reasons).

    And “mixing tax rises and spending reductions”. So, UK government policy then. Ahh, but what’s this. “That don’t undermine economic activity and reduce demand”. Thought there might be a touch of Balls in there. Not just any beans are needed. Magic beans is what we want, so we can grow our beanstalk out of the debt crisis….

  26. @Alec,

    As I say, I basically agree with your analysis, but I worry that the Greek people simply don’t understand what a default would mean.

    I’m sure I could have a great, cheap holiday in Greece in 2012 (I may well even do that, haven’t yet been there) but it will be cheap largely because the man serving my drinks, the girl who cleans my room and the lady on the car-rental desk will be earning barely enough to feed themselves.

  27. @Crossbat11
    ‘He’s no Tory, but he teases me about possible Lib Dem sympathies’

    Tell him he’s lucky that he’s not one of next year’s (£9k) intake.

    And note that of those who might eventually pay those £9k fees, only those born in September or October 1993 are yet old enough to have their voting intentions recorded in national opinion polls.

  28. Henry – that North of England detail giving Labour 53% and LD 5%, level pegging with UKIP, must surely give you pause for thought. With figures like that I would bet on 20 seats or fewer for the LDs next time.

    The COMRES 14% poll is heavily statistically adjusted to account for shy LDs and I refuse to believe it ! (Only joking – I am just biased.)

    Interesting to see that the Tories are ahead in the 25-39 age group. I expect they are the indoctrinated children of the oldies in the 60+ age group where the Tories have a big majority. Only God knows why the oldies favour the Tories. Chouenlai may enlighten us one day. The 40-59 age group were young and impressionable 30 years ago when Thatcher was in power and therefore are more likely to vote Labour :)

    I joined LPYS in 1983 aged 14. Youth politics doesn’t seem to exist anymore.

  29. Neil A

    QE is already magic beans.

    The question is, do you magic up money and give it to the black hole called BANKS or do you use it directly to get the world turning again?

  30. IANANTHONYJAMES

    ‘The COMRES 14% poll is heavily statistically adjusted to account for shy LDs and I refuse to believe it ! (Only joking – I am just biased.)’

    That’s where the other pollsters have been going wrong, ignoring us shy LDs.

  31. @IanAJ
    “With figures like that I would bet on 20 seats or fewer for the LDs next time.”
    You can. 5/1 with Ladbrokes that they get between 11-20, and 16/1 for 0 to 10. Quite generous IMO.

  32. @Neil A

    ” Thought there might be a touch of Balls in there. Not just any beans are needed. Magic beans is what we want, so we can grow our beanstalk out of the debt crisis….”

    You’re right that it’s devilishly difficult to get the balance right, and there is no economic silver bullet in existence, but some Governments in history have squared the circle. The Clinton administration inherited a gargantuan budget deficit in the US but, rather than imposing austerity measures to try and deal with it, he grew his way to surplus and a reduced national debt. The key to his success were policies that created jobs, put money into the pockets of people who tended to spend it rather than save it, thereby stimulating consumer demand, and, in some cases, short term increases in government borrowing in order to fund the job creation and demand stimulation policies required. Increased consumer demand generated more jobs, personal incomes rose, tax receipts swelled and a virtuous economic circle was achieved. Classic Keynesian macro-economic policy in fact.

  33. @Alec
    There needn’t be a default if the strong countries (e.g. Germany) also leave the Euro, or better still it is dissolved altogether. Then, in a zero sum game, the gains to some holders of the defunct currency formally know as the Euro (e.g. those which would be converted to DMs) would offset those who would find themselves holding drachmas. All that is needed to avoid certain banks going belly up is a mechanism for the EU to claw back net windfall gains from some banks as part of the conversion process, and pass them on to other banks to compensate for their drachmas.

  34. @ LeftyLampton

    ‘Of course, a key reason that the LoN became an object of derision was that had been emasculated by the supine approach of the UK Govt (and others of course).’

    Of course it had nothing to do with the fact that the USA, (despite Woodrow Wilson being a major founder figure in getting the League started) didn’t ever become a member. Germany and Japan left the League in 1933 and Italy in 1937. The League was regarded with derision because in was firmly centred around the provisions of the Treaty of Versailles and members kept joining/ leaving. It proved totally unable to put together a single coherent League policy outside of the Treaty of Versailles provisions and tended to cave into forceful nations from both within and outside the League. The isolationist policies of the USA and its refusal as the world’s most powerful nation, to even join probably damned the League right from its inception.

  35. “Tell him he’s lucky that he’s not one of next year’s (£9k) intake”

    In the interests of balance of course, don’t forget to tell him that fees were introduced by the previous government, current levels recommended by Lord Browne who was commissioned by the previous government and the level after which he starts paying fees back is now £21k rather than £15k. But I guess that would spoil the story…..the students I know are just “thrilled” with the hypothetical £6k “cap” from Ed, committed to the cause, maybe not a manifesto promise, we can come back to that, er, we’re not sure……

    Labour in England will never ever reduce the current fee levels…..

  36. Haven’t posted for a while, but I look in from time to time.

    I’m afraid I find some of the crystal ball-gazing from posters of all political persuasions on this site pretty unconvincing.

    I think the next General Election will be in May 2015 because neither governing party is likely to benefit from an early election. It is far too early to predict the outcome of a 2015 election and definitely far too early to write off the Liberal Democrats. At the risk of stating the obvious, opinion polls tell us about current public opinion. They can’t predict what public opinion will be in three and a half years time.

    Imagine the reaction you would have got in November 2006 if you’d predicted that Nick Clegg would become Deputy Prime Minister in 2010. Most people (including me) were expecting a Conservative majority right up to April 2010.

    The current turbulence in the Eurozone, whilst very worrying, only underlines the volatility and unpredictability of contemporary politics.

  37. @Bluejock
    “the students I know are just “thrilled” with the hypothetical £6k “cap” from Ed”

    They must be quite young then. You’re lucky though – if they were starting any time up to 2015 they’d be wetting themselves in ecstacy at the prospect of £9k.

    At this stage, Miliband is limiting himself to promises that he knows he can keep in an uncertain future, 3 1/2 years before the election, which is precisely why this one is credible.

  38. D Abrahams
    Good to here from you again.
    “Opinion polls tell us about current public opinion. They can’t predict what public opinion will be in three and a half years time.”

    Correct regarding YouGov. But I think predicting forward is precisely what ICM do. They predict that half of those now undecided former Lib Dems will support the party they voted for in 2010, with none supporting anyone else, on the strength of no evidence other than their past voting record, which of course predated the Conservative-LD pact.

    Current public opinion, as recorded by ICM, gives a 8% Labour lead. With their prediction, it’s down to 4%.

  39. Phil,

    Isn’t it normal that ‘a promise you know you can keep’ becomes ‘a policy’?

    If so, then why isn’t the ‘cap’ Labour policy ?

  40. @Crossbat,

    Of course the fact that Clinton came to power in 1993 (just as a recession ended) and reigned through eight years of international good times, with the peace dividend as an extra filip, had nothing to do with it?

    I grant you that Clinton was a good president, on the whole. He’d make a great Cameroon Tory were he British.

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