Two new polls tonight, and both show a one point Labour lead. ComRes’s monthly telephone poll for the Independent has topline figures of CON 37%(-1), LAB 38%(nc), LDEM 14%(+2). Meanwhile the daily YouGov poll for the Sun has topline figures of CON 39%, LAB 40%, LDEM 9%.

The gap between Labour and Conservative is obviously the same (and seems to be very typical of recent polls showing the two main parties pretty much neck-and-neck.) There is more contrast with the Lib Dems: YouGov normally give the party their lowest scores, the 14% from ComRes is one of their better scores of late from a non-ICM pollster.


291 Responses to “ComRes and YouGov both show 1 point Labour leads”

1 2 3 6
  1. First :)

  2. Independent has topline figures of CON 37%(-1), LAB 38%(nc), LDEM 14%(+2). Meanwhile the daily YouGov poll for the Sun has topline figures of CON 39%, LAB 40%, LDEM 9%
    __________

    14% for the Lib/Dems in one poll and 9% in another?? Why is it that only the Lib/Dems see huge variances in different polling organisations?

  3. Allan – it’s probably a combination of the polling companies difficulties in getting them right last time (with possible problems in false recall and the still unidentified reasons for that error) and the sharp drop in support (meaning differences from treatment of former LibDems saying don’t know and, again, questions over levels of false recall)

  4. After last night’s poll and now tonight’s, I expect old Eoin to return any day to remind us of his old mantra of “reds down, yellows up, yellows down, reds up”! I never quite bought it, but the two consecutive YouGov polls this week suggest we might have seen a bit of this sort of movement. That said, it’s probably just MOE movement around a neck-and-neck status between the two parties. Of course, tonight’s ComRes goes and blows my theory by suggesting it’s really “blues down, yellow up”! What are we to make of it all, Eoin?? I’m just a confused old Hector.

    I don’t expect Fred the Shred’s token dis-robing to have much effect on public opinion, nor Cameron’s continued wriggling on and off the EU hook, but I have a feeling that Lansley’s poll tax on trolleys, otherwise known as his NHS Reforms, have the capacity to derail the coalition. It’s comfortable home territory for Labour, and a rather unusual opposition alliance is now coalescing around respected organisations like the Royal College of Physicians, Royal College of Nursing, Royal College of Midwives, the BMA, Health Service Unions, Lib Dem and Labour peers in the Lords and various Patients representative groups. That’s some alliance and I see a classic political lose-lose looming for the coalition. A climb down would look weak and give off the whiff of panic, probably resulting in the end of Lansley’s political career, but ploughing on risks alienating both the NHS professionals and, eventually, the public.

    Mess with the NHS at your peril and I’m amazed that Cameron, normally an astute reader of the public mood, has got himself into this cul-de-sac. His political radar and antennae has gone missing on this one.

  5. Neck and neck or possibly some Lib Dem rise on the back of Tory fall…The second situation would be ideal for Labour

    If Milliband can improve his figures as well,then Labour are set for the mid-term to absorb any disgruntled government supporters

  6. @Crossbat

    It appears to me less a mis-step by Cameron’s leadership, as a mis-step due to being led by who ever on the cabinet has the loudest voice at the time…

  7. ANTHONY WELLS

    I suppose they are so few Lib/Dems around and depending on which way the wind is blowing it would probably be hard to gauge what level of support they are at. and their vote tends to be very soft!!

  8. I don’t know why Labour or their supporters would be happy with the current polling. Cameron is cutting everything but the Downing Street grass yet Ed can only do neck and neck with him!!

    To me it’s Cameron’s cuts or Ed and I think I know who will come out on top.

  9. General approval ratings for the Gov averaged at -20 in January.

    h ttp://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/708/approv.png

    Of more interest is tonight’s approval ratings from that place in the North which ought not to be mentioned outwith specified threads. ;)

    Peek at the ratings:

    h ttp://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/835/approv2.png

    With no massive change in VI for that area either.

  10. @AW

    RE: Lib Dems; A sneak preview of the latest data:

    h ttp://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/862/libh.png

    (Note the verticle axis numbers before analysing)

    Those trends suggest an upturn of Lib Dem fortunes, based on YG crossbreaks.

  11. Statgeek

    I do like your graphs.

    The Hyperborean LDs still seem to be suffering, despite a slight uptick.

    Pindar was right to say that

    “neither by ship nor on foot would you find the marvellous road to the assembly of the Hyperboreans”.

    Had he lived today, he might also have included “digitally on UKPR”.

  12. Crossbat.

    You’ve never bought into the Lab-up – LD-down idea.

    Have a gander at the graph below. It shows, for 10-11, the Labour and LD variations from their average VI over that period. But the LD data is flipped, so a positive figure means that their VI is going down relative to the average.

    Even Rob S might have to admit that there’s a grain of truth in Lab-up – LD-down after looking at this.

    http://i40.tinypic.com/35iqicw.png

  13. I wouldn’t describe 9% and 14% as a “huge variance”. More likely the LDs are on about 11/12%.

  14. If I could do my imitation of Virgillio tonight, we had a special election (a byelection) for a Congressional seat in Oregon tonight that was supposed to be close. The counting was so quick that I can actually give you British style results.

    So for the Constituency of Oregon Northwest, Beaverton, and Hillsboro (Oregon’s First Congressional District):

    Suzanne Bonamici, Labour (Democratic): 79,386 (56%)

    Rob Cornilles, Conservative (Republican): 53, 215 (38%)

    James Foster, Liberal Democrat (Libertarian): 4,413 (3%)

    Steven Reynolds, Independent Labour (Progressive): 4,473 (3%)

    Write-in votes: 348

    Labour (Democratic) Hold. :)

  15. Turns out I jumped the gun. Those weren’t the final results as I previously thought. :( It’d be impossible really to count that quickly in less than hour from polls closing…..although apparently Oregon election officials are now being permitted to count ballots before the close of polls as long as those ballots arrived prior to election day. All of the ballots in this race are cast by mail.

    Only 70% of precincts have reported (I misread the results page….not my fault). Still a Democratic hold and likely by a double digit margin. Congrats are in order to Congresswoman-elect Bonamici. This was supposed to be a close race in a once safe Republican seat where the Democratic incumbent resigned under a cloud (to sum it up, he kinda went crazy) and she won it by a double digit margin.

    I really like how you guys do it where you do not report any results from a constituency until all the results are in. Even when you guys had the referendum, you broke it down into jurisdictions and didn’t report results from any of those jurisdictions until 100% of the votes had been counted. It makes things a lot more clear cut and easier to analyze.

  16. Socal

    I’m not sure that the libertarian party is the equivalent of the libdems, American politics don’t really translate to British circumstances that well anyway, but on many issues I think the libertarians are much further to the right than any of our parties(though maybe I could say the same about the democrats)

  17. I’d imagine that most US-Libertarians would fit in the Conservative or UKIP parties. (Can you imagine former Libertarian presidential candidate Ron Paul in the LibDems?)
    I would see most Democrat politicians fitting in more with the LibDems than Labour.

    But the US has massively (unsurprisingly) different politics from Europe, which (in terms of parties) is pretty much standard across Europe.

  18. @Allan Christie (and Henry from the previous thread)
    Bumping around, neck and neck … I take a longer look at the poll than just the daily/weekly snaphots. As a Lab supporter I am not *happy* that Con are level-ish with us.But I consider several issues.
    1. 20 months after 29% at the GE, Lab has added 10-14 points to its polling. This (as Virgilio has noted) is extraordinary, and for 13-14 months GE projection on a UNS suggests a Lab majority. This is a good place to be. I would be tearing my hair out of we were on 32-33 and lagging significantly behind the Cons.
    2. After the ad hominem pastings EdM has taken (and continues to take), it can be argued that his low personal ratings are not affecting his electability the commentariat thinks it should. I know all byelections since the GE have been in Lab seats, but every single one was taken with a swing higher than the national polls suggested. Bear in mind EdM is facing two govt parties, not one. Could be a lot, lot worse. And yet, his ‘squeezed middle’ has entered everyday discourse, and his hits on Murdoch and bankers have arguably echoed the public mood far, far more than DC could ever manage. This makes a difference.
    3. Most Con voters are getting what they want. That is why their VI has not dropped (and increased by 2-3 in some polls).
    4. Divide and rule … most people are not utterly reliant on benefits so targetting welfare is (sadly) not a vote-loser.
    5. The LDs have taken pretty much all the opprobrium that otherwise would have been heaped on the Cons. From 24% they have collapsed to 12% (on a good day) and as low as 7% on occasion. They face obliteration. (sorry DAbrahams). I can’t see where their recovery will come from.
    6. The reporting is sometimes awful. EdM scores a consitent 38-41 and is a failure. DC scores less than that and yet strides the stage imperiously. Really now …

    Got to go to work now.

  19. Andy JS

    I wouldn’t describe 9% and 14% as a “huge variance”. More likely the LDs are on about 11/12%
    __________

    I would because in real terms it shows a 36% increase for the Lib/Dems….For example 9% is 64% of 14%. ;)

  20. CROSSBAT11
    Good Morning.
    I think the 1951 Liberal non performance helped Labour.

    But I also think the Liberal revival under THORPE, in Feb 1974 helped Labour.

    In any case ED and ED are not making the headway we should be seeing, with a ‘pre election’ period just three years away.

    People should be aware than voters in work, and not in receipt of benefits, and people who are now, or never have received child benefit, will be more conservative/reactionary about means tested benefits in harsh times.

    For example in 1931/1935 and 1992: Tory victories

  21. Tark

    Okay so Labour are well up on their 29% which they won in 2010 as most polls have shown but if I were a Labour supporter then I would be worried..Why?

    Well the Tories are in government making really tough and controversial cuts but are polling around 5% above what they won in the GE. I would had thought during a period of massive austerity measures the official opposition would had been miles ahead of the governing party and not necking.

    You have taken a lot of support from the Lib/Dems as the polls have shown but where have all the New Labour votes you lost at the GE gone? You should be taking votes from the Tories but instead their vote has increased too.

    And remember Ed is ugly and people don’t vote for ugly PM’s. ;) If you believe what the polls say!!!

  22. @ Tark

    “The LDs have taken pretty much all the opprobrium that otherwise would have been heaped on the Cons. From 24% they have collapsed to 12% (on a good day) and as low as 7% on occasion. They face obliteration. (sorry DAbrahams). I can’t see where their recovery will come from.”

    What a laughably partisan reading of the figures.

    “I can’t see where their recovery will come from.”

    If you look at our local govt byelection figures, average vote was 16% around May. Since July it has been 18% and so far this year, it has been 24%.

    That is where our recovery is coming from: the grassroots. It is also worth reminding you, Tark, that our leader is more popular than yours, despite being viciously scapegoated for two years now. I think you’ll find that increasingly it is Labour that is on the retreat.
    After all, if you look at the poll graph on this site for “all” Labour peaked out last summer at around 43% and has been on the slide ever since. The long term trend is for it to slip closer towards 35% than to 40%.

  23. @RobertC
    ‘Vicious scapegoating’ – the most vicious attacks on NC have come from his own coalition partners. Remember during the AV referendum when it was leaked that NC supposedly knocked off work at 3pm and was burning out? Ouch.

    ‘Laughably partisan’. Not entirely fair, although I do plead guilty to supporting my own side. I am aware that LDs are doing better than expected in local elections and byelections. My point is that, if you are running in the GE, I don’t see what your strategy would be. Softening Tory atavism is not a great line – the Cons would not be in the position to be atavistic at all without LD votes in the HoC.

    Whatever people voted for in the GE, they did not vote LD to have a Con govt, which explains an awful lot of their drop in support. I stick with my opinion that the LD brand has taken the toxicity that the Con brand (some argue) should have taken.

    Finally – polling does indicate that Lab has the biggest pool of potential voters, and a smaller pool (compared to Con) of people who would *never* vote for them. After the GE and the personal attacks on EdM, as before, I’ll take that.

    @Allan Christie
    I have Con friends who are more worried than Lab. Why? because they are not building on their poor GE result, they are not reliably taking votes from Lab, and especially not in the Midlands or North on a large enough scale. And they are most worried that Europe is about to explode on them again, and taken with the mess over the NHS bill they fear a perfect storm of bad news on two fronts. As for EdM being ‘ugly’, well, we had a lovely charismatic leader for a while whom I voted for happily … until Iraq. Some of us would like competence above a messiah complex. I’m not a fan of changing leaders mid-parliament while doing ok in the polls.

  24. Alan Christie.

    1) Voting for ugly PMs. Churchill, MacMillan and Wilson were scarcely oil paintings. Major come to that with that bizarre quivery top lip thing. And the current PM’s fizhog has been likened by his own backbenchers to that of Bagpuss. (Mind, the current PM failed to win a GE so we’ll scratch that one…)

    2) Lost New Labour voters. That, if you’ll permit me, is a rather simplistic comment. The polling record since the GE shows clearly that what Labour actually lost over 2001-2011 was about 2-3million supporters to the LDs. Those have come back in their millions. I’ve pointed out in previous postings that the Tory voters’ self-image has moved quite significantly to the right over the last couple of years. Labour has mopped up a huge portion of the middle ground. What exactly do you suggest they do to mop up another couple of million distinctly right-of-centre Tory supporters?

  25. @ Tark

    The point is that you are extrapolating on the basis of voting trends that have already run their course (Labour up, Lib Dems down), and may even be showing some signs of reversing.

    To say that we are going to be obliterated when we are still achieving some poll ratings at between 14% and 16%, even after all the slagging off that we and our leader have taken constantly for two years is little short of remarkable.

    Your point about the fiercest criticism of Clegg coming from the right is absolutely correct. If you read the Telegraph, Mail etc. they have run a constant campaign of slamming stories ever since the leadership debates in early 2010.

    I still maintain that if the Lib Dems can make it clear that they are neutral between who they ally with at the next election, plus they maintain the differentiation they have recently achieved vis a vis the Tories on the personal allowance vs 50p rate, Mansion Tax etc., they could attract back both some Labour defectors and the hidden reserve of many 2010 voters who are now don’t knows.

  26. @ Leftylampton

    “The polling record since the GE shows clearly that what Labour actually lost over 2001-2011 was about 2-3million supporters to the LDs. Those have come back in their millions.”

    Why are you assuming that their move to Labour is a one way trip? If Labour can’t reverse any of the cuts (which is the main reason why people have defected from the Lib Dems), lacks clear policies and has a desperately poor leadership, there might be considerable mobility in future. Winning elections is all about both the party/parties in power losing them and the opposition party articulating a credible vision of what they would do if they were in power. Neither of those conditions is certain of being fulfilled at the moment.

  27. Labour have learnt well from the lib dems… it’s easy to win votes when no-one really knows what you stand for. I wonder if their share of the vote would hold up once the public and press can scrutinise their policies.

  28. TARK

    I agree the Tories should be doing much better and Europe is still a very wobbly issue for them and not to mention that they are in a rather volatile coalition pursuing over a lot of cuts, all very fertile ground for Labour capitalise on but I don’t see it.

    The battle for PM will be decided in the Midlands and the South East, the Tories are never expected to do well in the North.

    “As for EdM being ‘ugly’, well, we had a lovely charismatic leader for a while whom I voted for happily”

    You hit the nail on the head, Ed is hardly charismatics and that really can make the difference if someone can cut it or not!!

  29. leftylampton

    Alan Christie.

    1) Voting for ugly PMs. Churchill, MacMillan and Wilson were scarcely oil paintings. Major come to that with that bizarre quivery top lip thing. And the current PM’s fizhog has been likened by his own backbenchers to that of Bagpuss. (Mind, the current PM failed to win a GE so we’ll scratch that one…)
    ________

    I’m only going by what the polls were saying but mind John Major was up against Neil Kinnock..Just saying!!
    ….
    .” What exactly do you suggest they do to mop up another couple of million distinctly right-of-centre Tory supporters?”

    Well it could be a start because I doubt the Lib/Dem support you have picked up right now will stay. I know in Scotland the Libs were crucified but in a UK election I doubt very much the ones who say they are voting Labour will actually vote Labour.

    Labour are not taking anything from the Tories, that’s the problem and you can’t count on slippery Libs to see Ed through…Mind that old saying? “Never trust a Liberal Democrat! ;)

  30. Big advantage to Tories on the economy in the COM-RES poll…Unless Ed and Ed manage to narrow that gap,I think the Tories are going to be in government in some form or another in 2015.

    Manufacturing shows some recovery in January providing some hope that we might be able to avoid a double-dip…This might help the government keep up it`s advantage over Labour on the economy

  31. @ALLEN CHRISTIE
    You are wasting your time arguing with the the likes of Tark and Smukesh. They either cannot, or more likely will not, comprehend that the Tory inflicted austerity measures, should put the coalition well behind Labour. I have had the argument over and over and they persist in saying Labour at neck and neck, IN THESE CONDITIONS AND CIRCUMSTANCES, is a great result.
    Of course, they don’t really believe it, anymore than they believe they can win with Ed Miliband as leader. It just makes them feel better.

  32. @smukesh
    A lot more for George Osborne to do yet. But generally a much more rational assessment than most of your comments.

  33. @planky
    Hi Planky, don’t know you, but welcome if you are new.
    Your comment is bang on the money, 100% accurate.
    The Labour 40% is thus, 25% tribal, 15% “don’t like the cuts”. As you so rightly say, if the 15% who don’t like the cuts, had a clue what Labour would actually do, Labour would be back to their 2010 GE client base.

  34. CHOUENLAI

    Austerity is responsible for Labour`s vote share climbing so quickly after the second worst showing in their history and maybe they should be 4-5 points ahead…But due to a phantom-veto and negative publicity about their leader,they are neck and neck with the Tories.

    With the above figures,Labour are set to get a majority in the house…However I am not clear how far they need to be ahead for the Tories to get a majority…AW said about 7 points but the electoral calculus shows they might gain a majority with less of a lead,so am not sure…More recently,Labour haven`t dipped below 38%(except in ICM which uses a different method)…If the government do a good job,they are set to do well at the next election…If not,Labour are well placed to get a big majority.

  35. SoCal

    She won 57 percent to 38 percent

    Faux News had been teeing that special election up for weeks as ‘more proof’ of Obamas election losing unpopularity !

    Chouenlai

    It is not a great result at all to be neck and neck.

    But given the special party poltical circumstances I don’t think any party will be cocnistently more than 6-7% in fromnt all ther way to the next GE.

    The idea that labour “should be 15-25% in front given ConLib austerity is mischief making !

    ***

    The “oh….it was NOT a veto after all” blow back is beginning to pick up nicely. As Dan-the-man Hannan himself states today:

    ““In one important sense, we are now in a worse position than we were before December. We have set the precedent that, if some integrationist states want to go further but fail to gain the approval of all 27 EU members, they need only sign an intergovernmental accord among themselves and carry on using EU institutions. This, in effect, means that there can never be any more vetoes – ever”

    This- more so than labours policy contortions (necessary though they are)- will dent the Tory headline VI number over the coming 1-3 months.

  36. CHOUENLAI
    `A lot more for George Osborne to do yet. But generally a much more rational assessment than most of your comments.`

    That`s nice of you to say though I try to be rational all the time…I suspect you think comments uncritical of the coalition to be rational and critical comments to be irrational.

  37. Oh dear touch pad typing !

  38. A 1 point lead would certainly not give Lab a majority in the 600 member house.

  39. JOE
    `A 1 point lead would certainly not give Lab a majority in the 600 member house.`

    `The Independent` states that with a 1 point Labour lead in the COMRES poll,Labour are set to get a 6 seat majority

  40. I suspect the reasons that the cuts and austerity aren’t hammering the Tories as much as might be expected are twofold:

    1) We’re still in a position where the long term impact of the cuts is yet to be felt. My LA is starting to bring in closures at the end of this FY, in April.

    2) Austerity isn’t even handed. There are people like myself who are basically unaffected by the economic headwind. Why would I agree with Labour if other people are feeling the pain, but not me? In fact I would argue that the current polls, with entrenched Labour and Conservative numbers, support this unevenness.

    To make it worse the cuts and austerity measures are going to be very regionally divisive. This may, perversely, result in a solidifying of the electoral position. The affluent south won’t have any reason to vote Labour, the north no reason to vote Tory (and to wind up our LD friends, no-one will have a reason to vote LD!)…

  41. @SoCalLiberal

    One of the reasons that the UK can report election counts so quickly has to be the small geographic size of our constituencies. The votes are brought to a central place, and a mass of people count them… Where constituencies are large the count may often take place on the following day (for example Hexham).

    There is also a degree of one-upmanship involved, with Constituencies/Cities vying to get their results in early. One example is the Birmingham Edgbaston result in 1997. It was seen as a key result because Labour gained a key seat from the Tories, but the main reason is that the city pulled all the stops out to make sure the count took place quickly and they could get on the news before any other marginal seats!

  42. Crossbat

    “Mess with the NHS at your peril and I’m amazed that Cameron, normally an astute reader of the public mood, has got himself into this cul-de-sac.”

    Possibly because he actually believes that the NHS is too precious to allow to die on its feet and genuinely believes it needs transforming to be safeguarded (as well as improved in certain areas)?

    I believe he has conviction to take unpopular policies such as austerity and reforms of the NHS, you don’t which is why you misunderstand him (with the greatest of respects to you of course :) ).

  43. chouenlai

    @ALLEN CHRISTIE
    You are wasting your time arguing with the the likes of Tark and Smukesh. They either cannot, or more likely will not, comprehend that the Tory inflicted austerity measures, should put the coalition well behind Labour. I have had the argument over and over and they persist in saying Labour at neck and neck, IN THESE CONDITIONS AND CIRCUMSTANCES, is a great result.
    Of course, they don’t really believe it, anymore than they believe they can win with Ed Miliband as leader. It just makes them feel better
    _____________

    Totaly agree with that and if Labour are doing so well then one has to ponder at what all the fuss over Ed Miliband’s performance is about from within the Labour ranks!!.

    I will say it for them..”The Unions picked the wrong leader” ;)

  44. @Robert C
    Hmmm … I really don’t see that the LDs will be able to take the middle ground, neutral honest broker kind of thing. I rather think Cleggmania was the final gasp. They are in govt now and whatever unpopular legislation goes through has to have gone through on LD votes. That is inescapable. If the drop in univ applications continues, univs go bust, the NHS stops working properly, hospitals close, etc., then those have LD fingerprints just as much as Con.

    I’m glad we agree that NC’s nastiest knocks have come from his coalition partners. I myself thought NC was bit premature back in May 2010 and some judicious distance from the start would have been better. I don’t see it just as criticism, more consistent undermining.

    I’m with @Smukesh, if Lab have not dipped below 38% since the year before last, well … and if we’re doing that with the supposedly useless EdM in charge, then we’re doing something right – and more to the point, Con are busting a gut just to squeak level. I’m not convinced by comments about where Lab ‘ought’ to be. We are where we are.

    Personally, I’m watching the NHS thing right now. The fact that DC didn’t see it coming (remember what a ‘surprise’ Lansley’s bill was in Sept 2010?), and that he has allowed it to play out for over a year with little sign of it ending, ought to give Con voters pause for thought about their leadership’s strategic instinct.

    @Allan Christie – charisma so easily morphs into that messiah complex … back in 1997 Rory Bremner did a sketch that showed TB walking on water. TB obviously took that seriously.

  45. TARK

    “I have Con friends who are more worried than Lab. Why? because they are not building on their poor GE result, they are not reliably taking votes from Lab”
    ________

    Just a quick fact.

    Tony Blair 2005 election 35.2%.

    David Cameron 2010 election 36.1%

    Just goes to show you that the current system heavily favours Labour in that they can win a majority with a smaller share of the vote than Cameron.

  46. Robert C

    I didn’t say that I thought that the LD->Lab move was a one-way move. Having said that, I DO think there are strong reasons for thinking that it might be.

    I’ve long felt that a big proportion of the increase in LD vote share through the noughties was from fundamentally left-leaning people becoming increasingly disillusioned with New Labour. At the same time, Kennedy and to a lesser extent, Campbell did a good job of positioning the LDs as a sponge to soak up these disillusioned voters. It was widely accepted by 2005 that the LDs were some way to the left of Labour. Clegg then came along and put a fresh, telegenic face on the party – he and the Orange Bookers certainly moved the party rightwards, but it crept under the radar of most voters. So the LDs were still seen as a fine alternative to Labour for the disillusioned centre-lefties.

    May 10 has completely blown that situation apart. Disillusioned lefties now realise that there is no simple cuddly option. They either vote for a centre-left party or they risk getting a right-wing Govt. 40 years of positioning and manoeuvring by the centrist party, making themselves appear to be a safe haven for those disillusioned with the mainstream parties has been blown out of the water.

    It’s just a theory of mine, but it is one that fits hand in glove with all the polling data of the last 18 months, from the near one-for-one Lab rise/LD fall in overall VI, to the fact that the lost LD voters strongly identify themselves as being left-of-centre and strongly dislike the Tories. Poll after poll after poll is showing this.

    It leaves the LDs with a genuinely existential problem. If you have views that are centre-left, why on earth vote for a party that will make its mind up on what kind of Govt we have AFTER the election? Why run that risk? And similarly if you are a centre-right voter.

    It leaves the LDs with a rump of 2-3million voters who either genuinely believe that it doesn’t matter which major party holds the reins so long as the LDs can influence them in coalition, or who are keeping the flame burning for the time when the LDs will gain a majority themselves. The other 2-3million that the LDs assiduously courted for decades have, I suspect, been lost for a generation.

  47. @Planky – “… it’s easy to win votes when no-one really knows what you stand for.”

    I have a copy of Cameron’s personal “contract” here, it says Labour is making untrue claims about Tory cuts. He makes a number of commitments to *increase* public spending; he will reverse Labour’s jobs tax through “efficiency savings”.

    It took Osborne little over a month to go from “our plans do not involve a VAT rise” before the election, to announcing the new 20% rate.

  48. TARK

    @Allan Christie – charisma so easily morphs into that messiah complex … back in 1997 Rory Bremner did a sketch that showed TB walking on water. TB obviously took that seriously.
    _______

    Well I doubt Ed Miliband will ever get the chance to walk on water. ;)

  49. I think the recent small surge in Conservative support comes from the veto effect. It’s getting non-voters (and possibly ex-tory voters) off their bums into the polling booth.

    We will see if this reverses if the veto turns out to be not what was first thought. After all, we went through something like this with the “cast iron” referendum guarantee, which then turned out to be not what it first appeared, and thus we didn’t get the expected Tory majority.

  50. KeithP

    I think the recent small surge in Conservative support comes from the veto effect. It’s getting non-voters (and possibly ex-tory voters) off their bums into the polling booth
    ______

    Really!! Do people go into polling booths to take part in opinion polls? lol. ;)

1 2 3 6