The Evening Standard has published the penultimate YouGov poll for this year’s London mayoral election. Topline figures for the first round (with changes from last week) are JOHNSON 44%(+1), LIVINGSTONE 41%(nc), PADDICK 6%(-2), WEBB 3%(nc), BENITA 3%(nc), JONES 3%(+1), CORTIGLIA 1%(nc). With second preferences reallocated the final figures are JOHNSON 52%(+1), LIVINGSTONE 48%(-1). Full tabs are here.

In the London Assembly the shares are CON 32%, LAB 45%, LD 8%, Others 15% in the constituency vote and CON 30%, LAB 44%, LDEM 8%, UKIP 8%, GREEN 5%, BNP 2% in the list vote. On a uniform swing this would translate into 12 seats for Labour, 8 for the Conservatives, Lib Dem 2, UKIP 2, Green 1.

The rest of the poll had banks of questions asking which candidate people thought best understood the concerns of various demographic groups and which they trusted on various issues.

On the demographics, Boris is seen as better understanding homeowners and the middle classes, Ken commuters, poorer Londonders, older people and ethnic minorities. On understanding “people like you” Ken has a narrow lead, 26% to 23%. On the issues, Ken has a lead on transport, cost of living and uniting London’s communities. Boris leads on the economy and crime, with the two candidates neck-and-neck on creating jobs.

There were also some questions on “driverless” tube trains. People support their introduction by 44% to 36%. Asked if they’ll make the tube safer, more expensive, or lead to more strikes, on balance people think they will make the tube cheaper and reduce strikes… but by 41% to 8% think it will make the tube less safe.

97 Responses to “YouGov show Boris 4 points ahead”

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  1. Boris on BBC news at lunch describing a BBC journalists story as “f*cking b*ll*cks”.

    Boris will be Boris, or if this a faux pas likely to affect votes?

  2. @ALEC

    Not f***ing likely!


  3. WestLondoner – yep, the Westminster UKIP and Green crossbreaks are transposed (totals though were correct). Corrected version should be up in 5 minutes or so.

  4. There should be Populus/Times London mayor figures later on tonight – 7.30ish.

  5. @SERGIO
    `You’re welcome to draw on the anecdotal evidence of two commuters if wish to delude yourself that every single recent poll is wrong`

    If I gave the impression that I thought it will be a close election because of two commuters,then clearly I din`t do a good job…A 4 point difference doesn`t seem insurmountable that`s all

    If Boris has started swearing on TV,then I would say he`s losing it ( no pun intended)

  6. Alec,
    I don’t think that it would make much difference – Boris is known for his outbursts, so people have probably already factored anything like this in.

  7. @TF

    “Boris is known for his outbursts”

    Known to whom? If certain, perhaps less well-informed voters are thinking of voting for him because he’s ‘funny’, this might make him seem rather less funny.

  8. And as far as the polling goes – Boris has been consistently in the lead so it looks unlikely for Ken to win.

  9. Robin,
    He has a history of making ridiculous comments and putting his foot in his mouth – I suspect that’s what most people who see him as ‘funny’ are basing it on.
    I have no polling to confirm this though. ;)

  10. Just watched the Labour local election political broadcast on ITV.

    I have to say- IMHO- I thought it was very effective!

  11. @ Sergio

    Maybe Ken & Boris’s results have been transposed ;-)

    I always get excited about polls when they have a good lead for my Party/ Candidate. Why not? Life is short & it is fun to celebrate even the little things, like a ‘good’ poll.

    When it is as close as 4%, I think that it is not too silly to hope that one’s favourite(s) can sneak ahead in the final furlong & win in a photo-finish; it makes it more interesting to consider such a possibility, no?

  12. Alec

    “Boris on BBC news at lunch describing a BBC journalists story as “f*cking b*ll*cks/ Boris will be Boris, or if this a faux pas likely to affect votes?”

    As in ‘lift-gate’ I can only see this garnering him more votes rather than losing them: could even be a Jed Bartlett ‘hot mike’ episode (UKPR West Wing geeks will know what I am alluding to) !

  13. Fraser,excellent post.

  14. Good Evening All.

    I have just got home for a brief time after long day in school.

    I wonder how the News Programmes will cover ED and the PM over the Hunt affair.
    Interesting survey in the ‘I’ today of voters views, saying basically, that economic, knife and fork issues. sway the voters’ minds more than Westminster insiderish stuff, and secondly that Labour is not trusted on the economy, while the Cons/Lib Dems are not seen as ‘in touch’.

    Labour should be worried, I believe, that 40% seems to be their limit

  15. Chris

    Have a look to the right of your screen and you will see a succession of 40+ scores for Lab.

    Anyway, when did a party score much more than low 40s in a gen election recently?

  16. Bernard
    “Treat other commenters who don’t share your views with respect – it’s your chance to understand their point of view, not score points off them – and indeed, politicans from opposing parties with respect. Comments that talk about Zanu-NuLab, one-eyed Scottish idiots and so on are not conducisive to the non-partisan sort of discussion we want here and will probably never leave moderation.”

  17. Interesting comment at the end of the news.Something
    along the lines of, by supporting Hunt so strongly in the
    Commons,his fate and Hunts are now linked together.IF
    that was EMs intention by raising the urgent question he
    is truly Machiavellian.

  18. “Labour should be worried, I believe, that 40% seems to be their limit”
    For 2015, or beyond?
    And based on gut feeling or some sort of data?

    (I actually agree that 40+% for 2015 is unlikely, but I wouldn’t necessarily say it was their limit – there’s plenty of scenarios that could get Labour over that figure).

  19. Desperate stuff now from Labour.

    It’s similar to 1992 when it was obvious that they had chosen the wrong leader (yesterday’s man) a few days before the election.

    Too late to do anything about it now. There will be a major inquest on Friday night at Labour HQ.

  20. Can I state that, of all the elections taking place across the breadth of GB on Thursday, the outcome of a personality-driven ego-fest between Johnson and Livingstone is the contest that interests me the least. Why? Because all the polling indicates that this election will be the least relevant to judging the popularity of the parties nearly halfway towards a GE, by virtue of an outcome very different to that based on a vote in line with current party allegiance.

    Anthony – Shortly before the 2011 local elections across England, YouGov published a poll of voting intentions specifically in those local elections, which I believe put the Con and Lab parties neck and neck – very close to the actual result. Is anything similar in the offing, or must we now suffer numerous polls and threads on Vi in London, without the rest of the country (GB, not just England) getting a look in?

  21. I was told that it is the `stuff of dreams` that Ken can come back from a 4 point difference…Yet the Evening Standard is reporting the same poll as ` too close to call`…If the Standard dreams of anything,it is a Boris victory

  22. Mark,there may be an even bigger one at Tory HQ and as for Lib Dem HQ,perhaps wake would be a better term than inquest.

  23. @ Ann in Wales

    I think Ed M raised the issue & Speaker Bercow allowed it because David Cameron had said on Andrew Marr some things he had not said in the HoC.

    The speaker is determined to have governing done in the HoC, not via interview or press release. You have to admire the goal & the determination with which he is pursuing it.

    Of course the press/ TV media will not like it & the Speaker will be given a ‘hard time’ for undermining their ability to get a scoop directly from politicians or their press offices.

    I think that, for now, Ed M agrees with the Speaker’s goal to have all business done in the HoC. When (if) Ed is in David Cameron’s position, he may become less enthusiastic about it. :twisted:

  24. Amber,perchance.


    The Evening Standards has come out for Boris Johnson!

    Well, that’s a game changer…

  26. @RAF
    `The Evening Standards has come out for Boris Johnson!`

    Seriously, I never….

  27. I just watched the clip of Boris swearing on TV and it didn`t look nice to say the least

  28. Not interested in Populus TBH. If they only weight by 10/10 likelihood to vote Boris will be miles ahead.

    YG were the only ones to get it right last time, so I’m sticking with YG.

    Also, I heard that without the likelihood to vote filter Ken and Boris were almost level. I happen to like likelihood to vote, but only the incremental way YG do it, rather than 10/10’s only.

  29. @Smukesh

    Not kidding. A front page endoresement. Just in case anyone was in any doubt!

  30. I worked as train driver in Brazil and this poll shows how sadly how Tories keep using workers and unions as scapegoats.

    In order of implanting a driverless system without compromising the safety, the way the London Tube is, it would have to be simply rebuilt. The cost would be astronomical. There would need to be doors at the platform, just like in the driverless lines in Paris, the electrical system would have to be rebuilt, plus some other modifications on the trains. It would take years, maybe 5 years or more, of disruptions at the weekends. After all of this, there would still need to be a “passenger agent” (translating: a driver without a cabin) inside it. This promise is impossible to accomplish, Boris Johnson is simply fooling the electors, and if the TfL simply went nuts and did this anyway, this of course would impact the fares and drain public resources. I know this because in the city I was living in Brazil there were talks about it, and there, where the tunnels, systems and stations are more modern and easier to upgrade, unlike London which still use instalations from two centuries ago, it’s already impossible.

    And the general public in the poll, without this information provided and driven by tory media accusing the “greedy unions” of making London one of the most expensive underground systems in the world (also: the salaries play a risible part in the costs of a railway company. You can’t imagine what are the maintenance costs of a train), simply got it all wrong: it would actually be a completely waste of money, maybe billions of pounds, but it would be as safe as it now, provided it was done correctly.

  31. My spelling is all over the place tonight. No comments, please. I know!

  32. @ lcfreitasf

    The problem with the pledge is that driverless trains are not without guards (as you mention). So it won’t do anything to reduce strikes.

    The DLR trains are supposed to be driverless, but their are guards in the driver’s cabins!

  33. There, not their. I give up :(

  34. RAF – Populus normally use the same incremental likelihood to vote weighting as YouGov do. It is MORI who use 10/10 only


    I must admit I did think it slightly strange, when I did my expert post earlier, to find myself reporting that according to the computer tabs the majority of the 2010 Tory defectors appeared to have switched to the Greens.

    So it’s actually UKIP – not the Greens – who have taken 12% of the 2010 Tory vote is it?

    Yes, that does sound more realistic!

    But my essential point remains the same: namely, that as these Tory defectors are not going directly over to Labour many of them will probably go back home (to the Conservatives) come 2015.

    Regarding the mayoral/GLA race, there is a lot of Labour activity and posters here in Southall. What is interesting about this is that in 2008 there was lots of activity here from BOTH Labour and the Tories (on behalf of their respective mayoral and GLA candidates).

    Looks like the incumbent Tory GLA member Richard Barnes (a three-time winner) is probably concentrating more on his party’s core vote in places like Uxbridge & Ruislip, but certainly he looks like being toast if the polls are remotely accurate.

    The fact Labour’s local GLA candidate is Indian may be a slight drag on his performance (especially if you look at the racist rubbish posted on some of Ealing’s internet discussion forums) though probably not enough to be decisive.

  36. Humungous 12 point Boris lead according to Populus

  37. @Smukesh

    As I was saying…

  38. @ Virgilio

    “Thanks for your update on US student life and political commitment, in France there is not so much involvement, participation in university elections is rather low, and the lists are more or less partisan – even if hey do non coincide with a specific political party, they almost always have a right-left orientation, and in my student years, i.e. the 80s, the far right was steadily rising, threatening the post-May 68 left-wing majorities, that represented then the “establishment”, because Mitterrand and the left were in power.”

    Well I don’t think it’s a reflection on U.S. student life so much as it was a reflection of the crazy university I attended. It was one of those schools where half the students had a “2020” or “2024” at the end of their instant message screennames because they were all certain that’s when they’d be running for President. It was kinda obnoxious. Most other universities have a far more laid back student government elections. But even then, I don’t think I’ve ever heard of people running on a political party line. At some level, it’s not ideological. You might be a leading member of the Young Socialists of America on-campus group. But when running for student office, you might be seeking out the endorsement of the College Republicans Club. And they might give it to you and all come out and vote for you when one of your biggest campaign promises is to get better chicken tenders in the dorm cafeterias and get the university to extend the safe ride hours on weekends (so that when kids get absolutely sloshed, they can get a ride back to where they live).

    I will say one thing about my school though that I think can be appreciated. I told you about my friend who was the Student Association President and very popular. The student body at my school had a reputation for being a bunch of spoiled rich kids (just because the tuition rates were ridiculously high) and it had a reputation for having a large Jewish population. There was only a small percentage of African American students too. That was the primary electorate at the university. My friend was African American. He was Muslim. He was certainly not from a wealthy and privileged background; he was raised in the projects. He was raised by his aunt at the age of 6 because both of his parents were in prison. He won, amongst this electorate, with 68% of the vote.

    I was reminded of this yesterday when I was bringing a lot of my voters out to vote for not just me but a progressive slate of candidates.

    Actually, the most difficult thing yesterday is that one had to be a registered Democrat to vote. Now, the party makes it easy and allows people to reregister right at the caucus site. But there were some people I knew who didn’t want to do that (though three of my voters changed from “Decline to State” to vote for me). It gets a little tricky, who you can ask to change their registration to vote for you. I had one voter change his mind at the last minute because he decided he didn’t want to switch his party registration (which really is a meaningless thing for those who are mostly apolitical). I mean, do you have party registration for voters in France? I know that the UK doesn’t.

    I’m just wondering among some of the Labour stalwarts here, if you were running for some Labour party position to represent the party at a Convention, would you ask some of your dear Tory friends and Lib Dem friends and Scots Nats friends to come out and vote for you personally at some big Labour party event? If you were running for a Socialist Party position, would you invite some of your RPR and UMP friends to come out and vote for you, Virgilio, personally?

    “As far as French PE is concerned, it seems that the deal is closed, barring a very extraordinary event that could topple the situation. The “poll of polls’ for the week 23 to 30 April is Hollande 54.5, Sarkozy 45.5, and such a lead has never been reversed up to now. For example, in 2007, at the same week, Sarkozy had 52.5, and in fact he received 52.9 at the runoff.”

    I’m keeping my fingers crossed for you and your party. I hope Mr. Hollande is able to win and I hope that he’s an excellent President.

  39. @RAF
    `As I was saying…`

    I only trust polls which show a narrow Boris lead :)

  40. @Smukesh

    The lead is not 12%. This is just a nonsense of a poll. As usual, I will ignore Populus!

    If you’re going on the Tim Montgomerie tweet 1 in 6 Labour voters (around 17%) will vote Boris. Really? No-one has shown this to date. It also has Labour just 11% ahead in London, which is also lower than other polls.

    I don’t think Labour activists will care about this poll – it’s just wacky :)

  41. @ Mark

    “Desperate stuff now from Labour.

    It’s similar to 1992 when it was obvious that they had chosen the wrong leader (yesterday’s man) a few days before the election.

    Too late to do anything about it now. There will be a major inquest on Friday night at Labour HQ.”

    I think it’s a very different kind of election, perhaps unique in Britain. You have to give voters a reason to vote out the incumbent here. Livingstone probably has a party identification advantage (well I think anyway, there are probably more Labour voters than Tory voters in London) but it’s not enough to just be a Labour Party candidate to win. It’s just not.

  42. @RAF
    `As I was saying…`

    I only trust polls which show a narrow Boris lead :)”

    It’s more about accuracy than that. How can Boris be 12% ahead when YG show 4%?

  43. @RAF
    `I don’t think Labour activists will care about this poll – it’s just wacky`
    It`s `f****** b*****ks` as the great man on TV said

  44. @Socal

    Ken had the edge on most of his policies and leads all age groups bar 60+. I think you’re understating his appeal somewhat.

    All Boris really has is personality. It might be enough. But that’s about it.

  45. And let me explain why I don’t like the idea of driverless trains. Those train operator positions are jobs. That’s work. That’s a paycheck. That’s dignity. That’s freedom. That’s what pays for the groceries, the bills, the rent, etc. Now, I’m not saying that we should just ignore technological advances to keep around a bunch of jobs we don’t need. But in some cases, it’s better to keep the old jobs around. And I think that this is one of those cases.

    Now, the Washington DC Metro system is technically computer operated (though I’m not sure if it still is following the horrific June 2009 crash). But they’ve always kept the train car drivers. It’s been a very useful thing actually (given how many people get lost on the system, given the need to operate doors, etc.). Yes, technologically could probably replace all of these jobs but at what cost to society? A whole group of now unemployed people who aren’t able to support themselves? An inconvenient system where there’s no one there to help people who are lost and operate doors to help keep people sage?

  46. A poll showing a Boris lead of 12% is good news for Labour…

    1) It might scare Lab voters into getting out to vote
    2) A victory of less than 12% is now a case of Boris “underperforming”

  47. The Sheep,a very positive way of looking at things.Off to
    watch Game of thrones now.They had a very sensible way
    of doing politics then,if you dont win,you die!

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