This months polls seem to have bunched together to an absurd degree – yesterday we had ICM, Populus and YouGov, now we also have Angus Reid, TNS-BMRB and Ipsos MORI (plus of course, another YouGov daily poll tonight).

MORI have topline figures of CON 38%(-3), LAB 38%(-1), LD 12%(+1). Unlike most of the rest of the recent polling this is actually a slight move against the Conservatives although it still leaves the two parties neck and neck. The leader approval ratings are also very negative for Ed Miliband, dropping to minus 26 from minus 16 a month ago. It does also have an interesting political implication for inside the Westminster bubble – up until now the Labour party have been using MORI’s leader ratings to claim that Miliband’s leader ratings are broadly comparable to Cameron’s at a similar stage in his leadership. It was quite a tendentious claim anyway (Cameron’s ratings were around minus 5 or 6 at this stage), but it certainly cannot be sustained any longer. Miliband’s approval ratings are now heading into Hague or IDS territory.

TNS-BMRB have the most positive figures for Labour we’ve seen recently, with topline figures of CON 37%(+2), LAB 40%(+2), LDEM 10%(-1), Others 13%(-2). Figures for Miliband are again more negative though, the percentage of people telling TNS they have confidence in him to solve the country’s problems has dropped to 22% from 25% in October. 38% said they has confidence in David Cameron (down from 41%).

Angus Reid also have Labour holding onto a small lead, although it has fallen sharply since November, with topline figures of CON 35%(+2), LAB 37%(-5), LDEM 11%(+3). Again, Ed Miliband’s figures have fallen sharply – his net approval stands at minus 31 (down from minus 20 in November).

UPDATE: YouGov’s daily poll meanwhile has topline figures of CON 40%, LAB 38%, LD 9%, so another one with a small Tory lead. Overall we now have ICM & YouGov showing narrow Tory leads, ComRes & MORI showing Labour and the Conservatives level, Angus Reid, TNS and Populus showing narrow Labour leads.

486 Responses to “New Ipsos MORI, Angus Reid and TNS-BMRB polls”

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  1. First :)

  2. Looking at all the polls I think it’s safe to say Ed and Labour are on the slide.

    Disastrous considering all the benefit cuts which most Labour supporters rely on.

  3. Polls like buses !

    The VI figures are interesting, but since there is not going to be a GE for several years, the variations between these polls are not important.

    What is of more immediate importance – and should be of concern for Labour – is that Ed is now clearly in the same position as IDS was.

    If Ed were leader of the Tory party, the men in grey suits woud be knocking on his door with instructions to visit the library and do the decent thing. Does Labour have any equivalent mechanism ? It may be worth noting that there have been only 2 Lab leaders in the past 50 years who stood down mid-term, and not immediately after a GE defeat. In both cases they left of their own volition – though in the latter case not necessarily at the time of his own choosing.

    Will he jump ? If not, who does the pushing ?

  4. Allan Christie

    Looking at all the polls I think it’s safe to say Ed and Labour are on the slide.
    Disastrous considering all the benefit cuts which most Labour supporters rely on.

    Not only is that below the belt, but very tenuous at best.

    Try playing with a straight bat….I know many Labour supporters who are not on benefits, and Tories that are!

  5. Labour can’t seem to get any traction on the benefits issue as they haven’t found a counter too £26k ceiling….

    While they don’t create an effective counter to that they won’t be able to damage the Tories.

    The £26k has been used as a classic wedge issue to cover from wider effects. Ask people in term of a £26k limit and most will say it is more than enough.

    Put it in terms of clearances by Tory landlords to force people out of homes for them to develop and for them to behomeless and housed ahead of you in the few Council houses in your area and see how Labour voters react.

    In truth that is as much spin as the Tory line that highlights a few on very high benefits while it will effect a huge number more but it’s better than Labour just standing and watching as the Tories set the pace.

    It doesn’t say much for the official opposition when it is the Bishops who sem to be leading the fight not them.

    Cllr Peter Cairns (SNP).

  6. catmanjeff
    Allan Christie

    Looking at all the polls I think it’s safe to say Ed and Labour are on the slide.
    Disastrous considering all the benefit cuts which most Labour supporters rely on.

    Not only is that below the belt, but very tenuous at best.

    Try playing with a straight bat….I know many Labour supporters who are not on benefits, and Tories that are

    Yes I agree with you it was a bit below the belt!!

    You know some Tories who are on benefits? What are they claiming for? Housing benefit for their duck houses? ;)

  7. Are people really saying a change of leader would make a difference, if so in my view deluded. The tory support is solid because their supporters like what they are doing, it is as simple as that.

    How many Tory supporters are going to switch to Labour, if we went left they would not and ape the tories why move ?

    Politics as been said is stuck at this for a year now and nothing Ed or ANO could do to change it because positions are going to be fixed until policies are seen as a great success or failure.

    Remember the real cost of the cuts have yet to hit and when people see their friends and family being hit and are not fakers that is where it could change for the better for us (labour).

  8. Hhhheeeelllpppp – I don’t understand the completely and utterly conflicting results of today and yesterdays SIX polls !!

    Its a partisans paradise- EVERYONE and every perspective can spin it to support their view/ side.

  9. Cllr Peter Cairns (SNP)

    I’m at odds over this 26K cap. Yes I agree the bloated welfare costs have to be looked at but I don’t buy the 26k cap.

    It sounds appealing but consider this! You can have a family with 6 kids bringing in 32k of benefits a year and an unemployed couple bringing in a total of £17k a year between them. Now if you divide the per head benefit then actually the 32k doesn’t seem as much and in fact the unemployed couple are costing us more as a per head equation.

    Of course you won’t hear people say 17k in benefits for a couple is too much but the irony is per head it’s far more than a family capped at 26k.

  10. Cllr Peter Cairns,

    I am regret the fact that the official opposition can’t just come out and oppose the cap.

    Chuka Umunna’s response was:

    “In principle we are not opposed to a benefit cap,” shadow business secretary Chuka Umunna told the BBC’s The Sunday Politics. “What we are opposed to is the way the government has done it.”

    If that is not fence sitting, then I don’t know what is.

    Last night I thought that the policy was an improved version of Dame Shirley-Porter’ Westminster escapades.

  11. Allan,

    I am not convinced by the £26k either, it’s a headline grabbing slogan that allows the tabloids to focus very few people at the extreme taking the publics eye of the far larger numbers who are in need and will suffer.

    Thats how a wedge issue works you use it to divid your opponents support.

    Highlighting the £26k turns low earning working Labour voters against unemployed ones.

    Cllr Peter Cairns (SNP).

  12. I think the underlining trend is still Tories and Labour being neck and neck.

    Two polls show this and the others showing a 5 point tory lead and labour leads of 1-2% are all well within the margin of error of this trend.

    The average of the six polls also show this:

    Con 38% Lab 38% Lib 12%

  13. Cllr Peter Cairns (SNP)

    Absolutely agree with you. I think the figure is around 52,000 who would be affected by the 26k cap and the majority of them live in London where rents are astronomical hence the large benefit payments.

    Indeed it’s a headline grabber and set to antagonise those on low wages, a bit like when they put unemployment benefits up by £5 per week and some made the comparison to those on low wages in the civil service who were facing a cut in their wage packet!!

  14. There seems to be a bit of a debate about what is homeless. I just don’t think that it is right to class those families with kids over 10 who share with a sibling of the opposite sex as requiring re-housing if this is the definition. I seemed to have picked it up from looking at the papers and quotes of IDS and perhaps they are wrong. When I was young those of us who thought we were from better off familiies shared our bedrooms with our siblings and thought nothing about it.

    I am sure other posters can put me right on this. In which case, thanks.

  15. Looking at the VI it seems we’ve had two extermes a signifcant Tory lead (Sunday Times Yougov & ICM) to a small Labour lead (Populus, Angus Reid, YouGov/Sun) and an in between of level pegging (ComRes and Mori). Considering the Labour leads have been well within margin of error, I’d say at the very least both parties are level pegging, with maybe a slightly Tory lead considering Tory leads have been well outside of margin of error.

    What’s more notable, though at the moment are the internals of these polls, especially as we are at the mid-term stage now. And at the moment, I’d conclude they are bad for Labour. Why? Well, let’s start on the cuts. Most monthly and daily polling now shows the public do not like the cuts, they find them to be too deep, and fast and bad for the economy. Yet, by a huge margin they find them neccessary.

    This makes Labour’s meme almost redundant. It taps into the dislike, of the cuts but it doesn’t actually tap into what Labour need to achieve most; fiscal credibility. And that requires being seen as responsible, and generally trustworthy with money. On both these things, polling wise they are doingly badly.

    The last time YouGov asked the question on which party was seen to be responsible, willing to take tough decisions the Tories lead by 52, to Labour’s 9. That margin is astounding. On trust, most polls show them polling between either the early twenties, or the late twenties, the Tories early to mid forties.

    Considering ICM showed that only 10% of voters would change their vote on the basis of Labour’s recent ”keep all the coalition cuts” announcement, I’d say they have reached the highest they are going to get on the issue, unless they really pull something out of the bag. I lurk here often, and I’ve seen several on here thinking that in the long term their recent line will bring them economic credo.

    I don’t think so. Mainly because the message itself is confused, and is confused and contradictory to voters. I haven’t yet heard an argument as to how the voters will suddenly make sense of their new message. Another thing, is that roughly 40% of voters still blame them for cuts. Unless that shifts, I don’t see voters’ attitudes towards Labour on trust changing, and I doubt a very confused economic meme will actually change that, either.

    Another matter is voting groups. ICM’s poll showed that the Tories are leading among ABs, C1s, C2s, The South, The Midlands, men and even women (although the latter is margin of error). Labour are reliant on D/Es. And finally, Labour’s biggest problem continues to be Ed Miliband. His weekly ratings in the YouGov Sunday Times poll have fallen for three consecutive weeks, and combining the intial drop with following drops, he has fallen 24 points in his ratings in 3 weeks, that is astounding.

    This has been a trend in nearly every other opinion poll – be it Populus, Angus Reid, TNS-BMRB, ComRes, even Mori who has Anthony pointed out have been the last (and contenious) defence of Ed Miliband’s ratings. That has now died, especially since Ben Page at Mori has said this: Our latest survey shows Ed Miliband’s lowest score to date – and at this stage in parliament leader image is best predictor..

    His other tweets are pretty damning too – suggesting DC is EdM’s biggest problem. A problem which is never going to go away! Ed Miliband evidently has a massive image problem, projecting power, strength and authority, along with leadership skills. Even where he polls well (in touch, exec pay) the margin between him a Cameron is small (roughly 3%) and is in the late twenties/thirties. Even in Scotland he polls lower than Cameron – at quite a feat – a 48 point margin of Cameron’s minus 22 to Miliband minus 70!

    I don’t think Miliband can overcome these problems. On capitalism, he’s probably hitting the right sentiment – but his characterisation of his arguments are poor. In fact, most of Labour’s characterisation of arguments are ”poor” even on welfare, a very touchy issue for them.

  16. Classic distraction technique by the government:
    Growth has stalled,unemployment is climbing,even petrol companies are going bust and all that the government wants the people to look at is `Ed Milliband`…Comeon Ed,I know you are good looking but don`t grab all the attention

  17. LEETAY

    Well Ed does lead the polls when it comes to the ugly poll. ;)

  18. Henry
    Fact Check to the rescue –
    “Families aren’t considered homeless if their children are forced to share a room. This is flatly contradicted by what’s known as the ‘bedroom standard’. Under this a “bare minimum” of bedrooms is allocated to meet a family’s needs – it has been used in government since the 1960s.”

  19. I understand why politicians of all parties don’t tell the truth, it seems to be in their nature – but why would politicians risk allies (in this case, Shelter) who are not only politically useful but practically useful (at helping forge better policy) too?


    “Its a partisans paradise- EVERYONE and every perspective can spin it to support their view/ side.”

    Lib Dem / SNP coalition in the offing in 2015 then? (for the liberal nationists) :P

  21. @CATMAN

    “If that is not fence sitting, then I don’t know what is.”

    Looks like it. It also seems to be a recurring trend.

  22. Also, I have a polling question!
    This may be a little bit obscure…
    Does anybody know if polling companies have ever done pairwise comparison for voting preference?

    So ‘If you had to vote for either.. who would you vote for?’
    Lab vs Con, Con vs Lib, Lab vs Lib, etc

  23. C 40
    L 38



  24. @KEN

    It’s actually a very representative selection of polls. No one knows who to trust. :)

  25. “… *ideally* one bedroom should be allocated to: married or cohabiting couples, single people over the age of 21, pairs of children under 10 years old, or pairs of children aged 10 to 21 of the same gender.

    “The statutory definition plainly states that “living rooms and even large kitchens are considered acceptable places for children to sleep.”

    “Only the most severe cases of overcrowding could be potentially considered by local authorities as homeless under the statutory definition.”

    Neverthless BBC’s Jeremy Vine gave the entirety of his phone-in slot over to people so that they could tell their story of how they shared with a brother or sister and how they never considered themselves to be “homeless”.

    The nice middle-class Rowan Pelling phone in to say she sared with her little brother. However, one woman did give pause for thought say – she shared with her sisters… and even so they were subjected to constant attacks from the brothers who shared a bedroom next door.

    No one mentioned the need to have a quiet space in which to study/do homework.

  26. IMF chief economist says that Britain should slow down it`s cuts-BBC News 10 `o` clock

  27. Tories in the lead again, so re-inforces the underlying picture of level pegging.

  28. @STATGEEK……….As a Tory, I have to be pleased, the media narrative is very Tory friendly at the moment………whatever gloomy predictions are made, the media spin is supportive to our cause. :-)

  29. @BillyBob,

    “Nice middle-class Rowan Pelling” – former editor of The Erotic Review…. It’s always the quiet ones…

    I shared a house in college with a working-class (but fiercely intelligent) Brummie lad who shared a bedroom with three brothers. He said their room didn’t have any floor area at all, just four beds arranged like a game of tetris to fit them in.

    He was the only person I ever met who described themself as a “right wing National Liberal”. I guess he’d probably be an Orange Booker these days..

  30. @Smukesh

    Provide a link please that specfically mentions the UK. For now I’ve only heard the IMF warning generally, on it rather than specfically the UK.

  31. @SMukesh

    The BBC are wrong. The UK weren’t even mentioned by the IMF who were asked by Jeff Randell if they believed the UK should change policy and they said “No, you need a firm medium-term fiscal plan, and that is what the uk has in place”

  32. BOO BOO

    Great post -thanks

  33. Can we really not have a partisan argument over interpretation of what the IMF said or didn’t say, it’s hardly on topic anyway.

  34. Beeb article:

    UK forecast 0.6%, down from 1.6%
    DE forecast 0.3%, down from 1.3%
    FR forecast 0.2%, down from 1.4%
    EU forecast -0.5%, down from 1.1%

    Based on those numbers, the UK is looking quite healthy.

  35. Ah, sorry Anthony. WIll do.

  36. LEETAY
    The BBC are wrong`
    I hope you don`t expect me to trust you having just heard Stephanie Flanders and Nick Robinson on BBC news at 10 say exactly what I said…Their credibility is at stake…Unless you work quite high up at the IMF


    @”Based on those numbers, the UK is looking quite healthy.”

    Not sure about “healthy” !

    Suffering a little less would be my interpretation.

  38. Polls seem to have moved to All Square/Cons a touch ahead, plus EM losing credibility rapidly.

  39. COLIN
    `EM losing credibility rapidly.`
    Ed Milliband losing popularity…He hasn`t done anything to lose credibility

  40. @COLIN………In the land of the blind, the one eyed man is King…………. George is the one eyed man of Europe. :-) ( Stands back and waits for fun ) :-)

  41. KEN



    Really?-what do the polls say about his credibility on the economy?-is there another game in town at present?

  42. It comes to something when the Polls render Rob Sheffield uncertain & unable comment.

    Can’t be bad .

    :-) :-) :-)


  43. Palace lose on penalties. Tories lead on YouGov.

    F*ck it!

    I’m off to bed.

  44. Statgeek. Remind me to ask for your sunny opinion the day I’m diagnosed with a terminal illness. If we are looking relatively healthy, it’s the look of a man who has bird flu whilst his neughbours have pneumonia.

  45. Well according to the news, the world is going to end on Friday !

    Is this why there has been a sudden rush of poll data ? Get it out there, just in case it doesn’t really matter.

    Today we have had stories about how the solar flares might affect us, George Soros predicting riots/class war in the US plus conflicts in Europe and the IMF stating that the world economy is on the edge of a cliff.

    Is there any good news out there ? ( And before anyone says it, I don’t mean a small lead for the Tories in the polls)

  46. And whilst Austerity-obsessed Britain and Europe peer into the 1930s shaped abyss, Obama’s neo-Keynesianism seems to be pulling America round quite nicely.


  47. COLIN
    `Really?-what do the polls say about his credibility on the economy?-is there another game in town at present?`
    ICM says it`s gone up…23 to 28%…
    Which poll are you talking about?

  48. Eeh well, never mind. SuperMum on Newsnight says all we need is to be a bit more optimistic. Are they going to play “Happy Talk” over the closing credits.

  49. leftylampton

    Probably due to the £650 billion defence budget. Even Winnie-the-Pooh has been offered an apprenticeship at Lockheed Martin.

  50. Lefty.

    0.6% growth is better than recession. With everyone individual, business and gov department being forced to make things balance, it’s no surprise that the growth is small. If there’s any excess it gets gobbled up by debt repayments.

    In other words, the country is trying to live within its means, while feeding itself and paying off its debts. No room for masses of growth in that scenario.

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