Tonight’s YouGov poll has topline figures of CON 39%, LAB 40%, LDEM 9%. We are perhaps seeing a few more polls with small Labour leads than ones with small Tory ones, but for all intents and purposes the two main parties remain pretty much neck-and-neck.


372 Responses to “YouGov/Sun – CON 39, LAB 40, LDEM 9”

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  1. Could it be…………?

  2. Yes, I’m first……….! :-)

  3. So… neck and neck with LD a slight dip from the start of the year. Maybe there’ll be a boost for them after Clegg’s tax speech today but I don’t see it happening. The LDs seem determined to stay stuck on 8-10% no matter what they bring forward.

    I was hoping the turbulence at the start of the week was going to break the polldrums, but no such luck!

  4. What could be embarrassing for Clegg over the tax cuts is if Osborne doesn’t implement them up front this year (as opposed to the planned gradual increase).
    Which I can’t see him doing.
    For one it’d add a huge amount (the figure I saw was £18bn) to the deficit and would play in to Labour’s narrative.
    “We need to borrow more in the short-term to cut taxes on low and middle income consumers to boost the economy to reduce the deficit in the long-term” – That’s pretty much Ed Ball’s line on what should be done.

    Much more likely would be the abolition of the 50p tax.

  5. Also, I suspect someone has told Ed Miliband that he needs to get his soundbites out, because the Milibot has made another appearance –
    ““I think that we’ve convinced people that the Government’s going too far and too fast,” he says. “I hear people saying to me, I had it in my constituency the other day, people saying: ‘The Government, yeah the cuts are too far and too fast aren’t they? Yeah of course something needed to be done, but it is too far and too fast’.””

  6. Neck and neck,but I expect Labour to inch up a bit more after yesterday`s news

  7. @tingedfringe

    Interesting thoughts. The Lib Dems top policy is the £10k threshold. The Tories are known for wanting lower tax rates. Especially the higher ones. Who will get their own way?

    I seem to recall GO saying recently that the 50p rate would have to stay, probably until 2015. Perhaps Clegg has persuaded the treasury that cutting income tax at the lower end will boost the economy. Or perhaps he’s got a good anti-tory line up his sleeve if they say no, knowing that the £10k rate will happen sooner or later either way.

  8. @ Peestie

    ‘The LDs seem determined to stay stuck on 8-10% no matter what they bring forward.’

    But with six pollsters (Angus Reid, ComRes, ICM, Ipsos Mori, Populus and TNS) all having the Lib Dems in the range 10-16%, ‘stuck on 8-10%’ doesn’t really tell the whole story.

    I’m delighted with what Nick Clegg has been saying today but I’m not expecting a dramatic poll boost tomorrow. The Lib Dems are in a marathon (culminating in a May 2015 General Election), not a sprint.

  9. @TINGE FRINGE
    I think the whole business is well planned and well discussed. It will happen and Clegg and the LD’s will get some credit (solace) for it.
    We are all in it together.

  10. Tinged fringe,how does the term,the Milbot, fit in with a non partisan discussion of the polls?

  11. I wonder how Steven’s not quite a million bonus will affect the polls?

  12. ANN MILES
    `the Milbot, fit in with a non partisan discussion of the polls?`
    I agree

  13. Tinged Fringe

    I would strongly support the early introduction of the £10K threshold asap. It would particularly help the poorer members of society, especially those who do not have children and therefore have limited access to benefits.

    But it would be an incentive to us all. It may also mean that many who do not declare their earnings at all will start to do so because they will either pay no tax or very little tax, and therefore to remain within the law would be attractive.

    There are times when I take issue with NC but on this occasion, as a LDS, I feel totally as one wiu the leader.

  14. @ann miles
    About as well as Bullingdon boy.

  15. CHOU

    @”I think the whole business is well planned and well discussed. It will happen and Clegg and the LD’s will get some credit (solace) for it.”

    Exactly Chou. Reported as being with the prior knowledge of GO.

  16. D Abrahams

    ‘I’m delighted with what Nick Clegg has been saying today but I’m not expecting a dramatic poll boost tomorrow. The Lib Dems are in a marathon (culminating in a May 2015 General Election), not a sprint.’

    No surprise here but I agree with the above and your whole post 100%.

  17. HENRY
    I totally agree – it needs to be implemented asap.
    But politically I think it’d be difficult to do, unless Clegg is planning to a split from the Cons over the issue.

    Ann & Smukesh –
    I apologise. It was intended as a harmless joke about the nature of soundbites and politicians who repeat them endlessly.

  18. It is worth recalling just how much credit Gordon Brown got for reducing the standard rate to 20p. Anyone remember?

  19. RinN
    ‘I wonder how Steven’s not quite a million bonus will affect the polls?’

    A really good point. There may come a time when the bank’s sharers have quadruppled and the tax payer will get a generous return that we will tolerate a large bonus. Nothing has happened yet and there shouold be no bo0nus, and I think most people believe this. Possibly worth a couple of points in the poll against Tories.

  20. @Hal

    “It is worth recalling just how much credit Gordon Brown got for reducing the standard rate to 20p. Anyone remember?”

    And the stick he got for going back on it!

  21. Oops, that was the 10p rate wasn’t it. Now that didn’t make him popular.

  22. @ D Abrahams

    “The Lib Dems are in a marathon (culminating in a May 2015 General Election), not a sprint.”

    Is this a statement of optimism or are you trying to reassure yourself that there will be sunny uplands in 2015 ?

    I think the chances are that the LD’s will score a bit higher at the GE, as Labour voters in Tory/LD battleground seats will return to voting tactically.

  23. @ Hal

    Abolition of the 10p rate was one of the disasters of Brown’s premiership.

  24. To all you reconstructed Tories how does the increase of the tax band to 10K which I think will cost upwards of 10bn be sold as anything but a u-turn on austerity?

    I know with the media onside it will be spun but that does not change the actualité.

    Personally I would be glad to see Plan B in action

  25. D Abrahams
    @ Peestie

    ‘The LDs seem determined to stay stuck on 8-10% no matter what they bring forward.’

    But with six pollsters (Angus Reid, ComRes, ICM, Ipsos Mori, Populus and TNS) all having the Lib Dems in the range 10-16%, ‘stuck on 8-10%’ doesn’t really tell the whole story
    ______________

    Oh come on now, 8% 9% 10% 11% 12% 13% 14% 15% or even the dizzy height of 16% are all in stark contras to the 23% they won in 2010. :)

  26. @ R Huckle

    I think we’re likely to see a slow but steady improvement in LD VI over the next three years (cf the 1987-92 Parliament and the gradual recovery from the merger trauma).

    When you say ‘a bit higher’ do you mean a bit higher than You Gov or a bit higher than ICM or a bit higher than the five pollsters in between?

  27. Colin

    “Exactly Chou. Reported as being with the prior knowledge of GO.”

    I agree.

    But nonetheless it is still a relatively easy political task to portray this both as a Coalition U turn and also sign of panic over the state of the economy going forward.

    On balance I think this is the second day in a row that has not been good economically for the government.

  28. @Allan Christie,

    To be fair, their 23% was a historic highpoint. The LDs are used to hovering around the mid to high teens.

    Being in single figures must be torture, however.

  29. D Abrahams

    “I think we’re likely to see a slow but steady improvement in LD VI over the next three years (cf the 1987-92 Parliament and the gradual recovery from the merger trauma).”

    Currently absolutely no empirical justification for this statement at all: yet again with the simplistic wishful thinking from the yellows on here

  30. D Abrahams

    It is likely that ICM is overstating support due to the methodology and so the range is something between 8-13% based on the others

    I can see that rising at a GE but it may be that the vote holds up in the South but is wiped out in the north

    I admire your optimism but Î would focus on looking at the reasons why a significant amount of your voters (including me – in 5 out of the 6 elections I have voted in) have walked away and think about how you get them back.

    I would give you some ideas but don’t think you are rally that bothered!

  31. In fact if anything Polls tend to inflate the Lib/Dem vote.

    The fianl poll before the 2010 elction had them somewhere like 30% + then the excit poll had them on 23%.. What a picture Mings face was that night. ;)

  32. @ Allan Christie

    But Lib Dems always do better in General Elections than in mid-term polls.

    In 2007 Lib Dem poll ratings fell as low as 11%. That didn’t stop them doing much better than that when it came to the crunch in May 2010.

  33. @D Abrahams

    “But with six pollsters (Angus Reid, ComRes, ICM, Ipsos Mori, Populus and TNS) all having the Lib Dems in the range 10-16%, ‘stuck on 8-10%’ doesn’t really tell the whole story”

    Sorry, I should have qualified that saying I was referring to YouGov. My point was more that they haven’t seen any significant rise with any of the pollsters. The different methodologies give different amounts but they’ve been more or less static for months. A 16% was very welcome but if YouGov, who have lowest LD scores, jumped to 16% I’d be delighted.

  34. @ D Abrahams

    “When you say ‘a bit higher’ do you mean a bit higher than You Gov or a bit higher than ICM or a bit higher than the five pollsters in between?”

    I think they will achieve about 15%, as I think the YG method appears to disadvantage the LD’s. My suspicion is that the tactical voters who may be undecided whether to back the LD’s again, may well be ignored as don’t knows. Anthony made the comment the other day, that the other pollsters handle the don’t knows a bit differently.

  35. @ Rob Sheffield

    ‘absolutely no empirical justification’

    I refer you to my response to Allan. When the Lib Dems struggle during a parliament they tend to recover by the General Election – that’s what happened in 87-92, 92-97, 97-01 and 05-10. Often the recovery only happens in the last few weeks before polling (see 2001). 2001-05 was the exception because of a strong Iraq War boost in the middle of the parliament.

    Clearly the Lib Dems aren’t doing well currently. History strongly suggests that things are far more likely to get better for them between now and 2015 than to get worse.

  36. Neil A
    @Allan Christie,

    To be fair, their 23% was a historic highpoint. The LDs are used to hovering around the mid to high teens.

    Being in single figures must be torture, however
    __________

    Good point it was a historic high for them, maybe they prefer historic lows. ;)

  37. D Abrahams

    Can you explain to me in what way the situation in 2007 and that in 2012 are in any way comparable?

    The defence used to be that the reason the VI dropped low between elections was due to a lack of visibility – cannot claim that today. Also, the tactic at GE time has been to apparently veer left to mop up the many disaffected Labour voters.

    Can’t see that working again, apart possibly in the south as a continuing anti-Tory vote. You are toast outside the South though

  38. Bazsc

    “To all you reconstructed Tories how does the increase of the tax band to 10K which I think will cost upwards of 10bn be sold as anything but a u-turn on austerity?”

    I thought a ‘U-turn’ was when one slams on the brakes and changes direction 180 degrees?
    Given the £10k tax allowance is in the Coalition agreement, it is more like putting the foot down on the accelerator to get to one’s destination a bit quicker……. :-)

  39. D Abrahams
    @ Allan Christie

    But Lib Dems always do better in General Elections than in mid-term polls.

    In 2007 Lib Dem poll ratings fell as low as 11%. That didn’t stop them doing much better than that when it came to the crunch in May 2010
    __________

    Yes I agree with that but one difference back then is that you were not in bed with the Tories. Look what happened to the Libs in Scotland.

    Okay so lets say you are on double figures at the moment 9 ¼ % so the fact that you have gone into bed with the Tories I reckon you may win 15% which is not too bad. ;)

  40. Hooded Man

    If this is introduced in the current year as is being suggested above then this will cost 10bn in lost revenues in one go. This has never been the intention, in fact it is Balls that has called for immediate tax cuts for the poor and middle incomes.

    When Balls suggests reversing the VAT increase, the immediate shout from the Tories is – where will the lost income be made up from?

    A simple question – do you believe in the austerity measures set out by Osborne and reaffirmed by him this week or do you believe in an immediate fiscal stimulus as proposed by Balls and Clegg?

  41. Allan

    ” The fianl poll before the 2010 elction had them somewhere like 30% + then the excit poll had them on 23%.. What a picture Mings face was that night.”

    Yeah, but clegg screwed up the final debate, he was overconfident and unprepared. He should have been taken out back and shot after the election, most of the polls after that debate showed that cleggmania was tapering off.

  42. It isn’t a U-Turn like Mr Sheffields asserts; it is simply an acceleration of an already existant policy. The government hasn’t had a particuarly good, or bad day; Clegg’s announcement will likely be the budget, and Dave’s been strong at Davos. Neither I suspect, will mean much to the public struggling with rises in living cost – although the former may make an impact when announced at the budget.

    I doubt Labour will make much gain on the growth figures, if they didn’t on the bad unemployment figures last week; the start of bad economic news which will surprise no one. The government’s approval rating may dip though, and economic confidence within the public’s mind is likely to decrease further. Wherther it impacts in the long term on the standing of political leaders, depends on how they deal with the coming months.

    This poll doesn’t surprise me though – basically the parties are neck and neck.

  43. I’m afraid the boring truth is that the Lib Dems 10K tax idea fits in to current Tory ideology rather well. The Tories are quite keen to make working pay over benefits, and prior to the rise in the tax threshold, if you were on something thing 7-8K per year, you were barely better off than you would have been fully on benefits, so this was an easy policy for the Lib Dems to sell to the Tories.

    I stand by what I said before – if the Tories manage to pull off an overall majority at the next election, I don’t think they’ll be in any hurry to take the tax threshold down again.

  44. Allan

    I’m not quite sure what you are suggesting here when you say that the libdem are in bed with the Tories. What all of them, all at once??!! Whatever would the prudish register make of that

  45. Bazsc,

    We don’t know yet how/if it will be funded – I imagine Osborne will not compromise his borrowing plans so the money will come from somewhere else.
    Balls has never articulated a particularly coherent plan on the deficit – oppose all cuts, clamour for more stimuli, but never explained where the money would come from, therefore it has been a perfectly legitimate retort to ask where the money would come from…..although he seems to change his position now and again so it’s difficult to keep up…..

  46. richard in norway

    “Yeah, but clegg screwed up the final debate, he was overconfident and unprepared. He should have been taken out back and shot after the election, most of the polls after that debate showed that cleggmania was tapering off”
    __________
    IMO Clegg was way out in front in the debates right up till the end but the voters (Wobbling Labour voters) got cold feet and reverted back to Labour because of the prospect of a Tory gov.

  47. RobS

    “D Abrahams
    “I think we’re likely to see a slow but steady improvement in LD VI over the next three years (cf the 1987-92 Parliament and the gradual recovery from the merger trauma).”
    Currently absolutely no empirical justification for this statement at all: yet again with the simplistic wishful thinking from the yellows on here.”

    Grand! Given that there’s both current and long term historical evidence that combined Labour and LD vote share doesn’t drop below 50% in GEs, we’re looking at Cameron needing the thick end of 45% for a majority in 15. I’ll sleep with a smile on my face.

  48. richard in norway
    Allan

    I’m not quite sure what you are suggesting here when you say that the libdem are in bed with the Tories. What all of them, all at once??!! Whatever would the prudish register make of that
    _____

    No of course not, they take it in turn!! ;)

    lol. :)

  49. D Abrahams

    Change the record. It’s stuck.

    What is the political logic behind this recovery you keep predicting?

    My prediction is that the Lib Dems will be crushed in local elections this year 2013 and 2014 and then in the GE 2015.

    They badly messed up on AV. They badly messed up on tuition fees. There has been a seismic shift in opinion against the LDs.

    Now Clegg’s unauthorised tax threshold move seems like desperation already.

  50. “Now Clegg’s unauthorised tax threshold move seems like desperation already.”

    Eh? How is this rise in tax threshold “unauthorised”? Surely the coalition partners can agree to anything they like?

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