We don’t normally get any polls on Friday nights (it’s my night off, dammit, hence this will be a very short post!), but there is a new ComRes online poll in tomorrow’s Independent. Topline figures are CON 34%(nc), LAB 39%(-1), LDEM 10%(-1), Others 17%(+2) – changes are from their poll last weekend in the Independent on Sunday. The poll was conducted between Wednesday and today, so will be after the revelations about Jeremy Hunt and the news that the country in back in recession.

On the specifics of Jeremy Hunt, 63% agreed with a statement that Mr Hunt should resign in the light of revelations that his office was secretly passing information to News Corporation during its bid to take over BSkyB, 12% disagreed.

154 Responses to “ComRes/Indy – CON 34, LAB 39, LDEM 10”

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  1. I won’t say anything about Comres and their Tory samples…I won’t say it. I really won’t. There you have it chaps, the Lab lead is really 5%, and if you don’t believe that, it’s because your partisan :)

  2. You’re. D’oh.

  3. Leveson says it’s not his job to examine Hunt.

    I think he is right.

    DC needs to move on this quickly-it’s festering.

  4. There’s no increase in labour support after news of the double dip? Really? Ugh. It looks like the remaining tories will just never change their allegiances. To be fair, you can hardly blame them after Labour’s catastrophic last few years.

  5. “63% agreed with a statement that Mr Hunt should resign… 12% disagreed.”

    Sir Alex Allan is likely to be called in front of the Public Administration Committee to explain his thoughts on the case.

    Previously he promised them that he would resign if he ever felt he was being “bypassed”. His predecessor as independent adviser on the ministerial code, Sir Philip Mawer, resigned shortly after he was not called on to investigate the Liam Fox scandal.


  6. I don’t see how Hunt can survive. The argument that he didn’t know what his Spad was up to seems ludicrous to me. Isn’t the whole point of a Spad that they are the political eyes and ears of their minister?

  7. I fail to see how he can possibly “prove” innocence or otherwise via emails etc. The whole point, surely, is that logic dictates he MUST have had private conversations with his adviser that gave the clear impression that he was behind the bid in principle.

    This is, of course, particulary easy to believe because we know he was.


    I think Labour’s lead is fairly solid and they are in the game

  9. @Colin – I’m really surprised that No 10 moved to suggest Leveson would be the forum to deal with the Hunt issues in the first place. Announcing this before getting agreement with Leveson was a stupifying lack of judgement, and I just don’t see now how he can possibly avoid referring Hunt himself for investigation.

  10. The Telegraph has a story on Hunt`s tax avoidance…Could this become another Liam Fox saga where the press dig deeper and deeper,just as other posters have suggested


  11. This poll does remind us that Labour certainly aren’t romping home yet, but again shows the Tories are stuck in a very poor place.

    The rebuff from Leveson on the Hunt investigation is yet another example of an ongoing trend of poor governance – they just don’t seem to get process right.

    There have been many signs, from abandoned forest sell offs plans, poorly drafted health bills, to ill thought through budget measures and panic fuel buying, but it really is quite striking how they seem to keep getting the process and procedure of government wrong.

  12. @Colin

    “DC needs to move on this quickly-it’s festering.”

    I think you may be disappointed, I’m afraid. As Portillo observed on Neil’s programme last night, it’s quite possible that a major political scandal is unfolding and that Cameron himself was complicit in the oiling of the wheels of the News Corporation bid for BSkyB.. When you think about it, it’s not credible, is it, to think that Hunt, via his special adviser, was acting alone and not doing the entire Government’s bidding.

    I sense the fetid Murdoch waters are lapping ever closer to Downing Street and Cameron may want Hunt, rather like a useful idiot, swinging in the wind a while longer yet, certainly until a more sophisticated damage limitation strategy is cooked up at the top of Government. Whether the eventual strategy is successful, however, is a matter of great doubt, especially if the media the opposition keep gnawing at the rather juicy bone.

  13. @ALEC
    ` they just don’t seem to get process right.`

    Sending Hunt to Leveson seems at best an attempt to stall or delay and at worst an attempt to avoid intensity of scrutiny over the affair.

    The malafide intentions led to the wrong process

  14. Hello to all. its my first post here..been great reading over the past few months!
    I think Ken will fall short by 5% come next Thursday. Time for London LP to move on now I think.. As for next Thursday I think we will be 6% tops over the Tories in the national share but no more..Love to think YouGuv has it nailed but somehow..
    BTW David Laws is far, far quieter these days locally than he was before the 2010 GE I still think he will call it quits before 2015…what a difference 20 odd days in May 2010 made.eh David?

  15. It just feels to me like the whole thing’s unravelling.

    I don’t know how it will happen, but it’s going to come undone quite quickly. Incompetence and corruption.

  16. @Smukesh – I’m prepared to accept that No 10 genuinely thought Leveson should run through the entire affair, as they had uncovered it. I don’t see this as a particularly bad notion in many ways, as it does contain some logic.

    Where they have completely goofed is in going public with clear statements that this is what is going to happen and using that as the reason why the independent adviser on the Ministerial Code is not therefore required, without first quietly checking with Leveson what he thinks.

    By failing in this basic task, they have been made to look stupid in public, but much worse, have seen their sole excuse not to launch the investigation they sought to avoid completely knocked away. All for the sake of a quiet phone call.

    As I say, they just seem incapable of doing the basic stuff of government.

  17. The polling companies really should start asking about UKIP support.
    There were four council by-elections yesterday that I am aware of. UKIP fought three of them. They got an average of 31 per cent.

  18. @PC

    “I fail to see how he can possibly “prove” innocence or otherwise via emails etc. The whole point, surely, is that logic dictates he MUST have had private conversations with his adviser that gave the clear impression that he was behind the bid in principle.”

    Can’t say I’m oversympathetic towards any politician, but I hope that nature of trial ever my or your way.

  19. Typo: ‘never comes my or your way’

  20. They are not called COMedy RESult for no good reason.

  21. @ALEC

    I am not sure one could get an answer about this issue from Lord Leveson straight away…It is a serious issue and after due consideration,he has decided that he is not the authority to decide on ministerial responsibility.And the government stopped worrying about appearing foolish in public a few months ago

    I am with Ed Milliband and other Red posters on this one…There is a plan for a cover-up and the one protected is not Hunt

  22. StatGeek:

    But we’re not talkiing about a trial are we? We’re just discussing whether, on the balance of probability, JH knew, at least to some extent, what his adviser was doing.

    DC set high standards for a new ministerial code and should therefore feel obliged to enforce them.

  23. I wonder what UKIPs VI was?

  24. @Max


    What’s the flag used for the Cornish independence party?

  25. I fear the vultures around Hunt may have to hover a while longer. Having known him personally I can say he is a hyper-intelligent, squeaky clean type who will prove much harder to dislodge than Liam Fox was. Ed Milliband’s observation that Hunt is a firewall will prove correct.

  26. Actually what we are judging is whether any reasonable person would think, based upon the evidence, that a fair judgement has been reached.

    The only thing, repeat, THE ONLY THING, that stopped this bid being disgracefully and partially waved through, bypassing the Competition Commission, was the Guardian revelation re Milly Dowler’s phone being hacked.

    Hunt has to go. The question will be…was it just him?

  27. Before bidding goodnight:

    Nick Clegg was impressive on the bit of the interview with Mr Robinson tonight.
    He was nice and loyal to his leader, the PM, over the Hunt affair.
    He said he must have a heart of stone if he did not feel pain when Mums were saying that they were going without meals in order to feed their little children.

    Very impressive. Thy will stay loyal to the Government as a whole, and be rewarded fully in time he said.

  28. sergio

    I’ve met Brodie Clark. Compare his disgraceful treatment to the avoidance of any scrutiny of Hunt.

  29. chrislane

    I suspect you feel exactly what I feel. What was that quote about the wartime carpetbaggers?

  30. RAF

    You mean Mebyon Kernow? I think it’s just a sillouette of Cornwall. That or the white cross on black as the Cornish flag.

    If Scotland can get independence I wish them all the luck, it’ll be a race to who will be the last man standing to see who inherits our Trillion pound debt.

  31. Nick my old friend,

    It seems poor Brodie took a £100k settlement from the Home Office.

    Chris Lane – the story about impoverished parents is an interesting one. It is not entirely clear whether the parents in question are affected by the recession or just not very good parents (eg the mum who was too battered to wash her son’s uniform).

  32. sergio

    I suspect Hunt won’t go hungry when he eventually resigns or gets sacked.

  33. Nick,

    We are agreed on that.

    Anyway it is now officially my birthday so I’m off for a lengthy stint in the sack…bonsoir and peace n love.

  34. @RAF

    I don’t know, it’s not the Cornish flag thats for sure, I just found the site on google.

  35. @ Sergio

    I fear the vultures around Hunt may have to hover a while longer. Having known him personally I can say he is a hyper-intelligent, squeaky clean type who will prove much harder to dislodge than Liam Fox was.
    Hunt may wonder whether he was deliberately put in this position by DC – i.e. because Hunt is a “squeaky clean” type.

    He was ambitious, a potential replacement for Cameron. So Hunt may suspect he was given a poison chalice: Get the BSkyB through & anger the non-Murdoch press or don’t waive it through & get on the wrong side of Murdoch’s people.

    If Hunt is “hyper-intelligent”, he ought to have realised that he would be standing between a rock & a hard place. He should’ve refused to take this hot potato from Vince Cable.

    IMO, Hunt was set up from the word go; it was a lose/ lose situation which, for all his “hyper-intelligence”, he didn’t see coming. Can he salvage his career? Well 63% say no – but that’s right now & maybe the public have short little attention spans.

    So the question is: Will this issue be kept alive by Labour & the non-NI press? I have a feeling they will throw themselves into sustaining it for as long as possible.

  36. @ Sergio

    Happy Birthday! :-)

  37. Ed has called it a cover up. But how tight will that be?

    Rupe, Liz and Matt, Jamie, Becks and Chaz, Andy… Sky bid crashed, and the Murdoch clan are left looking dirty because of hacking.

    Dave, George and Jeremy on the otherhand:

    Jeremy backed Dave for the leadership. He was given the shadow media, culture and sport portfolio in July 2007 – the same month in which Andy was hired (after Gerorge had made the case for him in preference to Guto Harri). By Sept 2009 Jeremy had been to NewsCorp headquarters in the US, James had entertained Dave at The George in Mayfair, and Rupe phoned Gordon at conference to tell him “Labour’s lost it.”

    Iain Martin’s story in the Telegraph this week (The night I saw Jeremy Hunt hide behind a tree before dinner with James Murdoch) suggests that by May 2010 the Culture Sec had indeed become hypervigilant about being seen to be too close to NI.

    The Spectator blog had Jeremy touring the tearooms during Gordon’s poll boost (July-Sept 2007) canvassing opinion as to whether he could be the next leader should Dave fail in a snap general election.

  38. @PC

    But the balance of probability is not in the favour of those without all the facts.

  39. Statgeek

    Unfortunately the court of public opinion, prejudging on spurious evidence and conspiracies trump facts every time. (I do believe there is a case to answer but it’s only right that he answers the case before the usual suspects round up a lynch mob, I suspect that by the time he gets to release the data and give his evidence there will be so many black caps being sent out the the public he wont stand a chance regardless of whatever evidence he presents)

    It is funny most of those jumping to conclusions about Jeremy Hunt are the first ones to defend red Ken’s tax dealings but on the same lines “if it makes a good story that he’s guilty, then he is guilty” seems to be how the court of public opinion runs. It might not be fair but anyone getting into politics understands fairness is a commodity rarely attained by politicians.

  40. @Alan

    UK politics 2012. Sad, isn’t it?

    Ironically in a story about allged media pressurs, Hunt is being undermined to a large extent by…media pressure.

  41. Good early morning.

    I think you may be under estimating the visceral channels of anti toryism which may be coming to the surface.

    Very strong article about Sheffield Hallam in the Indy.

  42. Ian Duncan Smith’s christian ethical roots are being shown today, over the next round of The Chancellor’s putative 10K of more welfare cuts.

  43. @ALAN

    Sounds about right. I see Ed Miliband is accusing Salmond of something now.

    Becoming the little firebrand. Handy way of deflecting focus on what he would or wouldn’t do. Politicians are all the same. :)

  44. @Chrislane1945, I believe the point of comments is to talk about polls, but since you brought it up…since the UK is in huge debt in trillions and borrowing money at high interest from our grandchildren and great grandchildren, do you think that is ethical? To spend the money for ourselves that will need to be worked for by people not yet born, to me that is unethical, childish, and very very selfish.

  45. JIM.
    Good Morning to you.

    I commented on Ian Duncan Smith’s policy statement about welfare cuts.

    Radio 4 is interesting this morning about the politics of The Enquiry and the Hunt affair

  46. JIM.

    IDS was saying that he has a responsibility to defend vulnerable children in poverty at this time.

    He believes the poor should not shoulder the burdens, especially the children who cannot fend for themselves.

    In terms of the Polls, I think that this view has some traction among some voters, hence the recent trends.

  47. Good morning, my mistake, sorry. I assumed you were being sarcastic. I guess I am a bit sensitive regarding “cuts” as I feel the constant attacks on cuts is irritating considering the massive deficit we have and the fact that inattention to it would actually cause more misery for everyone in the medium term.

  48. I’ve been thinking. Dangerous, I know, but there you are.

    Cameron deserves some credit for setting up the Levenson enquiry. Even if he was forced to do it, it’s there and it could drive the vampire out into the noon day sun.

    Suppose that, IMMEDIATELY the emials appeared in the public eye, he had referred Hunt to check that the Ministerial code had been adhered to? The worse that could happen then would be that Hunt would be in breach and would have had to resign. As it is now, he probably will anyway. But if Cameron had taken that (correct) action instead of this ridiculous dodging he would have looked decisive and it would have fitted into his narrative of wanting to clean up politcs.

    What should he do now? I think the only thing to do is to refer to the independent adviser and say he would have preferred levenson to deal but if he won’t then it needs investigating. Levenson has given him an excuse to so what he should have done in the first place. Hunt may well have to go…but with luck he might be able to portray it as a “technical breach” where the Minister takes responsibility for a rougue adviser.

    If he doesn’t efer now, then we are in that territory where the cover up is far more damaging than the crime. It makes Cameron look guilty of EVERYTHING we lefties dream up in our darkest conspiract theories and means all further levenson or other revelations will be looked at as fitting the done-a-deal-with-murdoch narrative.

  49. Alan
    “It is funny most of those jumping to conclusions about Jeremy Hunt are the first ones to defend red Ken’s tax dealings”

    Hmmm. I’ve noticed that. It’s called being partisan; one’s side can do no wrong.

    Perhaps a greater study of European politics would make some appreciate how un-corrupt, UK politics actually is. Not that I’m defending wrongdoing of any kind but there are a lot of storms in teacups here, due to incompetence, more than anything else.

    You can’t blame Ed from politicking, that’s exactly what the tories did during the Mandelson/Byers/umpteen Labour Home Secretary’s/Blair etc. incompetence periods. It makes the world go round.

    After 2 years it’s all going:-
    Tories in trouble – still under pressure.
    Can’t put the acronym, I’ll get moderated!

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