Tonight’s polls

The weekend after the budget often sees several polls. Tonight I am expecting at least three: the weekly YouGov poll for the Sunday Times, an ICM poll for the Sunday Telegraph and a Survation poll for the Mail on Sunday. I’ll update as they come in…

UPDATE: The ICM poll for the Sunday Telegraph has topline figures, with changes from their poll for the Guardian just before the budget, of CON 37%(-2), LAB 38% (+2), LDEM 13%(-2). It shows a slight shift towards Labour since the budget, though the one point Labour lead is smaller than some others we’ve seen of late for methodological reasons that we’ve discussed here before.

The other questions in the ICM poll showed the same patterns of popular and unpopular measures as in the YouGov/Sun poll after the budget: majorities were in favour of the increase in the personal allowance, to stamp duty and the cut in corportation tax. 63% opposed the abolition of the age-related tax allowance and 56% opposed cutting the top rate of tax to 45p.

UPDATE2: YouGov for the Sunday Times has topline figures of CON 35%, LAB 42%, LDEM 10%. This follows on from an eight point lead in YouGov’s Wed-Thurs poll for the Sun, so adds further weight to the evidence that the budget has produced a shift towards Labour.

UPDATE3: And finally, the Survation poll for the Mail on Sunday has topline figures, with changes from December of CON 31%(-4), LAB 39%(+4), LD 11%(-3), Others 19% (the high others is due to Survation prompting for UKIP in their main voting intenton question, consequently putting them at 8 points).

326 Responses to “Tonight’s polls”

1 2 3 4 7
  1. Survation tweeting:

    “In tomorrow’s M.O.S. We have a detailed post-budget look @ state of the parties with detailed analysis on vote switching among demographics.”

  2. @ Robin

    The Tory Party line is that no donation was actually accepted by the Party, so not illegal. Had a donation been accepted, it would’ve been against the rules because the pretendy businessmen were representing a foreign hedge fund.

  3. @ Billy Bob

    Survation hinting that some older voters are moving to Labour, perhaps?

  4. The Tories will lose a few seats to Labour
    but will gain some off them.
    The LDs will lose seats but will still be there.
    They’ll end up with about 15%.
    Turnout will rise a bit further to about 70%.

    I’m certain the economy is doing better than the “experts” think – it’s not unusual for it to be on the turn when people are most gloomy.

  5. @Amber

    I wasn’t meaning this instance in particular, but the practice of selling access (using government buildings) and input into policy-making, in principle (never mind the foreign donors rule).

    The film makes quite clear that money *has* changed hands in exchange for access, and that it is a regular and ongoing practice. And that the discussion was ongoing despite being ostensibly a foreign organisation raises the strong possibility that they *have* accepted funds from overseas.

    The Tories might be starting to wish they had kept the minimum booze price announcement until tomorrow. This is going to leave a very nasty taste in the mouth of the electorate as parliament goes into recess.

  6. As Gordon Brown found to his cost, and as Cameron is discovering now, “when sorrows come, they come not single spies but in battalions”.

    As always, the peerless Bard put it better than anyone.

  7. Dead men walking. Thank god.

  8. @Amber Star

    Perhaps MOS have already put their clock forward – the site is stuck on Saturday. O)

  9. The Tory party co-treasurer Peter Cruddas has resigned after it was revealed he was offering access to the prime minister and chancellor for up to £250,000. He was forced out after footage emerged of him apparently making the offer to undercover reporters.

  10. According to Sky NEws, Peter Cruddas, Tory co-treasurer , has resigned

  11. Tim Montgomerie reckons Cameron can shut the stable door and recapture the moral high ground, by putting a low limit on donations from individuals, businesses and unions. Sounded a bit shaken though.

  12. Here’s where is would’ve definitely become illegal:

    The newspaper [Sunday Times, I’m assuming] claims the offer was made even though Cruddas knew the money would come from a fund in Liechtenstein that was not eligible to make donations under election law. Options said to have been discussed included creating a British subsidiary or using UK employees as conduits.

  13. @ Billy Bob

    Tim Montgomerie reckons Cameron can shut the stable door and recapture the moral high ground, by putting a low limit on donations from individuals, businesses and unions. Sounded a bit shaken though.
    They just kicked that option out when they rejected the Commission’s findings a few months ago. It would be the epitomy of hypocrisy to re-open the subject of austerity Britain funding political Parties just to get David Cameron out of a jam which his own Party’s treasurer got him into.

    I think it is unlikely that Cameron can ‘capture the moral high ground’ on this. He may manage to limit the personal damage, if he’s very lucky.

  14. The ST “conduit” to Cuddas was hiring Sarah Southern, a former Cameron aide now working as a lobbyist, who advised that making a “huge donation” was the best way to gain access to senior government figures.

    Do the ST have enough to keep the pot bubbling away for a while?

  15. Survation puts Tories on 31%:


  16. That’s an eight point Labour lead on Survation.

    Con 31%, Lab 39%, LD 11%, UKIP 8%.

  17. Osborne not a top rate tax payer

    @Billy Bob
    I think all three of tonight’s polls are consistent. YG – Lab+7; survation – Lab +8; ICM Lab +1.

    Why have I included ICM? Because I would guess they are the only one of tonight’s pollsters to weight by likelihood to vote, which tends to boost the Tory vote share and hurts Lab vote share. In thr previous ICM poll, prior to apolying thr likelihood filter, Lab were 1% ahead. Yet thr wrighted figures showed a 3% Tory lead. Can we not assume therefore that had they not filtered by likelihood to vote on occasion, Lab would 4pts further ahead? If so that would put them on 5%, very consistent with the other pollsters.

  18. By the way AW, your message clock has not updated to BST. It’s 2.31am!

  19. Just woken up to see the news headlines, after being laid low in bed with flu. Who needs paracetomol to make you feel better? ;-)
    Stunning own goal by the Tories!

    The agenda has move on from we are (not) all ‘in it’ together, to they are all ‘at it’ together.

    Ed to make hay while the sun continues to shine.

    It will be interesting to see how the Lib Dems react.

    I’m certain the economy is doing better than the “experts” think – it’s not unusual for it to be on the turn when people are most gloomy.

    Please point me to those green shoots, because the raising price of fuel is an ongoing negative.

  20. “Please point me to those green shoots, because the raising price of fuel is an ongoing negative.”
    To be fair, exports have been up significantly since Labour was in power.

    The thing that’s been holding back the economy is household spending – which was actually up in Q4 2011 (against a backdrop of falling each Q since the coalition came to power).

    .. and while the retail figures for Jan and Feb have been quite poor, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the possibility of green shoots are there.
    And you’ll have to ignore the budget, which apart from the tax threshold (thanks LibDems), does little to stimulate demand (in some cases, like the Greggs Tax, reduce it).
    It’s all been supply-side reforms so far but if your faith is in market capitalism, then you don’t need demand-side stimulus.

  21. Murdoch hates Cameron The rest of the media just dislike him intensely.

  22. Good Morning All. More wonderful weather for the Fifth Sunday of Lent.

    Good to hear from Joe James B that the economy is doing well really, despite the cuts in consumer demand which the Lib Dems and the Conservatives are having to make, by pay freezes, cuts to poor families’ benefits, increasing fuel duty on the already rising price of ful.

    Very sad to see the fall of such a nice friend of Mr Cameron.

    Even sadder to see the news of Liverpool’s defeat at home to Wigan and Citeh’s loss of two points at Stoke.

    Have a nice day.

  23. Wonder how the ‘cash for policies’ media story this morning will affect polling ?

    All political parties need to raise funds and Labour are influenced by union funding. At some point, I am sure all parties will have to think about state funding, as a top up to what they raise via membership subscriptions.

  24. If these stories keep on appearing in the media, it will not help either of the coalition parties.

    This is one aspect that is not often discussed. If the coalition parties have public spats between now and the next election, surely this will only help Labour.

  25. I don’t foresee significant shifts in vi because of this (above the step change being seen post-budget)

    What it might do is make the Tory job a bit harder

    As always with this Government though it is what do the LD do? The y surely need to distance themselves but how can they set out a robust policy when it will be seen as an attack on the Tories?

    We can also see as the going gets tough the love-in is well in the past. If the LD continue to be craven in response then it will again give them longer-term problems.

    How brave will Labour be in trying to split the Coalition?

  26. I have a nice early night, tucked up with a book before 10pm. I miss all the fun overnight and then wake up to all this good news … I am thinking the govt has had its chips and it’ll simply unravel over the next 3 years. A horribly inept budget, a morally lax treasurer, the NHS bill, not to mention the fragrant Zac flirting with Lab. What price a Goldsmith defection straight to Lab? If he is untouched by party discipline stranger things have happened. :) But do we want him?

    I think a +8 Lab lead will solidify from now on. I struggle to think of opportunities Con will have to narrow the lead. @Joe James B, your optimism puts the great Dr Pangloss to shame.

  27. Whilst the issue of de-toxifying political brands is germane, I wonder if the Republican Party standing will be improved by the utterly unexpected finding that, despite giving every impression to the contrary, their Prince of Darkness actually was not as heartless as he appeared?

  28. @RAF – It’s highly likely that Osborne isn’t a top rate tax payer. His share of the familiy firm won’t provide him with an income as such (the firm has been losing money for the last couple of years anyway) but will be tied up in shares and capital, liable for CGT if and when he withdraws it.
    The mansion could also avoid raising any income, as I assume any loan finance costs are set against rental. The other possibility is that the mansion is technically owned by a company, in order to avoid Stamp Duty etc. Oh hang on…..

    On the sleaze issue, whether or not Cameron manages to jump on this with major reforms to party funding that he has already rejected, I suspect it will still be serious for him. He’s meant to be the shiny ‘Mr Clean’ of politics. Every policy and every donor will now be scrutinized by a hungry press, and as New Labour found, once belief evaporates, things get tough.

    Ed’s budget attack on ‘millionaires row’ on the government front bench now seems prescient. It worked for the budget, and it’s playing now, with this scandal errupting. How glad Labour supporters must now be that Ed went out on a limb last summer to criticise irresponsible business.

    What is very interesting is that back in 2008 in the Crewe and Nantwich byelection Labour tried the privilege card and got soundly rebuffed. It didn’t sound good, it smacked of petty jealousy and the media questioned whether Labour was still a party of aspiration.

    How things change. Today we have the Daily Mail questioning the earnings of the Chancellor and the media in general sniffing around big business and the PM, with granny taxes and millionaire tax rates into the mix. With his budget error, Osborne has managed to alter the whole tone of debate in Labour’s favour. Strategic genious.

    I’m now wondering whether we will get back to the Midlands Industrial Council story. While somehow still deemed legal, this is a vehicle for unknown donors to channel money to the Tories. The press pack are on the hunt now and I suspect we’ll start to see more investigations and question marks raised.

  29. JOE JAMES B – “I’m certain the economy is doing better than the “experts” think – it’s not unusual for it to be on the turn when people are most gloomy.”

    Well so far the experts predictions esp the “independent” OBR have had to consistently revise their gloomy predictions downwards. The green shoots in Dec – manufacturing died in Jan, the green shoot in Jan – retail sales died in Feb. The Eurozone was worse than expected. The only good news in the US.
    Remember that GO is dependent on 2% growth in 2013 even to hit his gloomy predictions and miss his original targets by 2 years. – and there is no way he will hit that.

    Obviously it most be more gloomy up here in Yorkshire.

  30. Why as the BBC put three right-leaning paper reviewers on (albeit ‘free spirits)

    The fix is in!

  31. Interesting to read a number of commentators pointing out that Cameron has repeatedly refused to publish who gets invited to the No 10 flat on the grounds that that is personal and not official. Perhaps we now know why?

  32. The next battle ground will be fuel – the Granny Tax is fisal drag so is a mood changer rather than a immediate problem.

    If GO doesn’t back down and Labour can pin the duty rise + 20% VAT on the reduction in top rate tax, it will pay a massive political dividend.

  33. Alec
    The Midlands Industrial Council?

    Sounds as anodyne as the old Soviet Ministry of Medium Machine-Building Industry.

  34. Con & Lab almost neck and neck among the 60+ voters in the YG/ST poll.

    I wonder how far back you have to go to see Tory VI among the 60+’ers dipping below 40%?

  35. @NICK P – immigration crackdown
    Comes a day or so after Grayling has admitted that they will be off-shoring the development of the new integrated benefits IT systems via their chosen partners (despite previous assurances)

    Apart form the terrible irony that a system built in India will be used to process the claims of unemployed IT workers in the UK,rather than provide employment.

    It will lead to a rise in inter-company transfers into the UK. Anyone with experience of IT (as I have) will tell you off-shoring is difficult to manage and has lead to increasing numbers of Indian workers sitting in desks in the UK. Of course they gave an exception to inter-company workers in their latest crack-down.

  36. I wonder if most commenatators have got it all wrong?

    The acepted wisdom was that the Coalition would suffer early poll set backs as they cut the budget for public spending, with bad news frontloaded. Then things would steady and the voters would creep back grudgingly by 2015.

    Instead all the anti-tory lib dems fled immediately and the Cons kept their support, solid as rock. The narrative of sorting out Labour’s mess worked and continues to work. It’s gonna hurt, but we’ll try to be fair but there is no money left. Britain’s got to live within its means.

    Even now the economic narrative remains with Con. What they have lost is any belief that they will be fair. And now the whiff of corruption linked up with the Murdoch/Coulson and Fox things. So as the prescient Ed M said, “all in it together” is shot to pieces.

    There remains the economic competence label. (along with immigration). But both the economy and immigration seem unlikely to be magically transformed by 2015 or shorter if the coalition implodes.

    The question is, if voters have started deserting the Con half of the Coalition without (yet) losing the central economic argument…just how can they win them back?

    Last time it was the European veto. But events are getting away form them now.

  37. David Milliband on Beeb24 just now talking about “cash for policies” sleaze and calling for PM to publish list of private lobbying meetings at No 10.

  38. Colin

    When it comes to Tory opinion the Mail is quite influential – not a good thing but there you go.

    If the Mail attacks the Tories it makes more difference than if it is the Mirror that does so, or the Guardian (who have not as yet said anything negative about the LD editorially). That is why us on the left gleefully post links to the travails within the Tory house

    You would do the same thing if a union boss comes out and has a go at Labour

    However, electorally I think the former is more difficult for the Tories than the latter is for Labour

  39. Tim Montgomerie on Beeb24 pushing the line that selling access to PM in return for donations is “unsurprising” and is somehow seen by the public as normal and commonplace. ”It’s very clear that this is what politics is about”. That’ s ok then.
    He was spinning the latest sleaze shock as something positive as it provides an opportunity to re-aximine the way that parties are funded. That’s all right then.

  40. Am I right in thinking that 31% for the Tories is their lowest poll rating from any pollster since the 2010 GE?

    @TOH – I believe we are meant to avoid that type of comment on this website.

    The Cash-for-Cameron scandal will compound problems for the Tories as the clock starts to tick on the Coalition. This time next year, the Coalition only has 25 months in which to call a GE. As that time runs out, there is likely to be increased pressure on the LDs to leap out of bed with the Tories and say “look – we did the right thing in the end”.

  41. @DANIVON

    Enjoy the polls while you can, the election in 2015 will be decided by the state of the economy and I continue to expect a comfortable Tory majority.

  42. @swebb

    31% looks a lot like Hague’s magic flatlining level.

    Just for fun, the Survation projection:

    Con 255 seats, Lab 371, LD 28, (92 maj).

    New boundaries:

    Con 218, Lab 340, LD 18 (80 maj).

  43. TOH

    Thanks for that – you shock me!

    Do you work for the OBR in the ‘estimations for growth’ office?

  44. The 31% poll is interesting. I’m not all together sure I would expect any great fall in the Tory score as a result of this story, or indeed any other event. We ought to remember that throughout the darkest of dark years, the Tories maintained a 30% plus rating, so to expect them to fall much below 33/34% now would be unreasonable. It seems a fact of life that the Tories have a level of bedrock support that won’t be shifted, and I tend towards @Rob Sheffield’s view that coalition means that poll leads between the two main parties will be closer than we have been used to in recent years.

  45. Cons have only been as low as 31 in a single poll since the GE. Angus Reid, April 2011.

  46. @TOH – the notion of a economic recovery leading to a Tory majority in 2015 is perfectly logical and remains a possibility. The twin difficulties with this are that we can’t guarantee the recovery will feel that promising but even if it does, it doesn’t necessarily mean the government gets credit.

    In fact, now that Goldman Sachs have said buy stocks as we are in for a decade of growth, we can be pretty sure that we’re about to see another big crash. More seriously, the Euro crisis is winding up again, Greek bond yields are still extremely high and that problem has certainly not been solved, while yesterday the Italian PM open stated he was worried about the risk of contagion from Spain, and Spanish bonds are creeping up in price again.

    These issues certainly aren’t Cameron’s fault, but there is a limit to how long the public can wait for good news without starting to disbelieve a government. Whatever the macro economic reasons, there comes a point in a prolonged bad news cycle when the bubble bursts and people stop believing people they used to trust. Once this happens, governments find it hard to wind the trust back, so even if there is a pick up they may not get the credit for it.

    This could well be the 2015 scenario, especially as Osborne’s dream of a year of relaxing austerity pre election has now evaporated.

    Recent economic data has swung down again, and the day of the budget saw far worse monthly borrowing data for the UK, with weak tax receipts. To be sure of your scenario you need to have a pick up sooner rather than later – at present we are a long way from that, and there aren’t many people who think the newly downward revised OBR growth projection for 2013 is realistic either.

  47. @ Chris Todd
    “There is too much of this “I know better” stuff on this blog now” eg. “I continue to expect a comfortable Tory majority.”etc.

    I sympathise with your view.
    As Valerie said a little while back, a site like this needs an election now & again, & we have a couple soon.

    Also as Popper said, you can demolish an argument or way of thinking, but unless you offer an alternative to the received mode you never really shift the way people think. What is your alternative?

  48. YG tables are in a horrible style today.

    They are all over the place, from a ‘lay-out’ perspective, to accomodate a silly proposition, namely: Biggest priority: Making Britain Fairer or Making Britain’s Economy Stronger.

    Where is the proposition that: Making Britain’s Economy Fairer Would Make It Stronger.? They’re not mutually exclusive; in fact this is virtually a push poll – pushing the idea that it must be one or t’other. There is plenty evidence that making an economy fairer also makes it stronger.

  49. I really hope we see significant improvement in the Economy by 2015, Even if that results in an OM for the
    As per Alec it is a resonable proposition but by no means certain that the recovery will be that strong and also it may be too late; and, the unfairness mantle may be too embeded to shift.

    Who knows, not me.

    Chris Todd, I live in Darlington and occassionally vist the seat sites in my area particularly the more marginal ones.

    Some posters who make predictions made plenty prior the the last GE, it might be instructive if they went back looked at their record before sounding so certain now.

1 2 3 4 7