Tonight’s YouGov poll for the Sunday Times CON 32%, LAB 43%, LDEM 8%, UKIP 8%, in line with the average Labour lead of 9-10 points or so that we’ve seen in the last week. As usual I’ll do a proper update tomorrow once the tables appear.

84 Responses to “YouGov/Sunday Times – CON 32, LAB 43, LD 8, UKIP 8”

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  1. People blaming bankers for the economic crisis vs last Labour government (47 vs28)
    People who who blame Barclays and BOE for Libor manipulation vs Those who thought the last Labour government had a role in Libor manipulation(47 vs 27)
    Similiar though the cross-breaks across the different parties are different.

    @Leftylampton I think points this out.Ed Mili is doing better among new Labour supporters than 2010 Labour voters.So perhaps the Lib Dem cohort that switched to Labour may not be that easy to strip away.

    @AW I agree.Each election is unique and which way ex-Lib Dem voters break may decide the next one I think (currently 3 to 1 for Labour vs Tories)

  2. If the government saved money on the running of the NHS, would this be popular with the British public and be reflected in polling on the issue ?

    When the government announced that they were suspending the fuel increase, they said that this was afforded due to underspend in department spending. The latest figures reveal an underspend of £6.7bn, with the largest being in the NHS at £1.7bn. At the time Cloe Smith on Newsnight refused to reveal which departments had underspent.

    I am thinking that politically the government would not wish to discuss underspend in the NHS, because if there was any increase in waiting times or refused drugs/treatments, this cause them problems. This is because the government had promised to reinvest any savings back into the NHS, which they may be doing. Under Labour I rememer the CEO of the NHS was used much more to talk about issues in the NHS, but this government appear to mainly use ministers to brief the media.

  3. ‘chronic welfare dependency’

    The new way of describing the economic system’s inability to employ the people properly.

    It used to be the politician’s job to ensure full employment. Now they don’t bother and defame the unemployed with hate-speech.

  4. @Billy Bob

    “Let’s not get carried away… no doubt the judgement on this government’s policy will come in due course – but I note that it took an FoI request to get Gove’s department to release a report on Labour’s Building Schools for the Future programme:”

    I’ve just spent some time, deservedly so I think on reflection, in Anthony’s “cooler” after one or two injudicious and probably ill-advised posts and, from now on, I’m not going to rise to anyone’s bait. Let’s just say that your response to Colin’s post is a highly reasoned and measured one. I saw the the Guardian article too and found it interesting. And I think we should let Colin’s highly personal attack on John Kennedy drift into cyberspace too.

    Sticking to comments on opinion polls, I never really thought that the Libor scandal, and the possibility that the Labour Government in 2008 was involved in some convoluted politicking to get the rate down, would damage Labour in the polls. This is Westminster village stuff at a time when the public is outraged about the further evidence that bankers, or more exactly their dealers and traders, were personally profiting from corrupt behaviour at their expense. It was the Milly Dowler moment for banking when hitherto arcane financial antics started to be linked to people’s mortgages and livelihoods. Consequently, the public is far more interested in what the politicians are going to do about it in order to prevent a repetition rather than wanting to get involved in pontifications about who didn’t regulate who in 2005 and who might have whispered what to Bob Dimond or Paul Tucker in 2008. Those issues are trees and the clever politician is the one who see the woods on all this.

  5. @AW

    “No Labour leader has managed to win a general election since 1974 unless they were married to Cherie Blair.”

    Go for it Ed. Show us how brave you really are. ;)

  6. Very, very interesting ( worth reading !!!! )

    Shows what a complete nonsense all this political squabble on LIBOR has been. Nothing to do with LIBOR, just the two treasury teams not liking each other and playing politics.

  7. The final sentence in Rawnsley’s article: “sharing power is as good as it is going to get” underlines a query I made earlier, which has received no feedback.

    Could the LD leadersip, faced with electoral oblivion by 2015, come to a PRE-electoral pact with the Tories, each standing down for the other in specific seats, using the line that they need five more years of “stability” ??

    The alternative is very likely to be a hung parliament with Labour ahead, followed by the removal of both Cameron and Clegg, so what’s to lose if they can get it past their parties?

  8. Re- Tory share in 2015.
    I am very much with Anthony on this.Whilst I fully understand NickP’s logic – and I hope he is right! -Andrew Rawnsley ,whatever his journalistic talents, is certainly no psephologist – as evidenced by some of his earlier articles and comments.
    The Tories might derive some comfort from the possibility that support for both main parties was artificially depressed by the Clegg factor in 2010.Had the Debates not taken place the Tories might well have ended up on 40% or so with Labour somewhere in the early 30s. On that basis,a Con share of 38/39% next time might still be feasible if conditions are fair for them – though 40% looks unlikely.

  9. Hireton @thesheep

    Your link is valuable but it would be more so if it were accurate. Full independence might be a republic but it needn’t necessarily be so. Independence is first, a constitution, republic or not, second.

    When I used to appoint staff, the first thing I wanted to know was “Have you done this sort of work before?”

    So I’ve no use for the Queen of England, but nobody, EVER, has had more experience as a player in this newly independent state transition business, thanhas the Queen of Canada.

    She’s a dab hand with a Statutory Instrument in both the langages in which she is fluent. I don’t think she could manage the Gaelic, but you can’t have everything can you?.

  10. paulcroft

    why do you say a hung parliament is likely? Surely the polls suggest a healthy Lab majority with the possibility of a landslide?

  11. @crossbat11

    I don’t mention sport as a rule, but to celebrate your return I’ll offer a tennis analogy as to why polls do matter.

    The first set (May 2010 – May 2011) was close, Tories ahead at first, then all Labour’s way… a tie break. Second set 6:1 to Labour.
    Now we are into the third set and the Tories are still serving double faults.

    Either player could disqualify themselves at any time, but no party will want to be behind in the polls when they face the electorate… be it in 2013, 2014 or 2015.

  12. “Did Cameron poll lower than Danny Alexander?”

    Never mind what it says about DC, how does DA being a benchmark go down with his constituents?

  13. @Paul Croft

    Actually answered that before you asked the question in the last thread. An electoral pact is unlikely, because it wouldn’t deliver anything positive to either party.

    Understand the implications of “LibDems being the best at being second”. A Conservative / LibDem pact has the following effects

    A) It makes a small shoring up of Conservative/LibDem figures in their marginals against Labour.
    B) It forces ‘Inefficent’ LibDem voters into making a direct choice.
    C) It solidifies anti-conservative vote with Labour.

    B’s effect is dependent on how many of those still loyal to LibDem voting would support a Conservative, and how many Conservatives would support a LibDem. The polling on this is not good for that, and strongly suggests it would push more people to voting Labour than Conservative. So this is almost certainly a net negative at the moment, and likely a strong one.

    C is probably already priced in following the huge defection due to the coalition, but there is probably more voting slack that Labour can take up if there’s an electoral pact. Possibly enough to wipe out any notational gains. Again, a negative.

    A may give some benefit. But the number of seats that can be gained are going to be small. The negative effects of B and C out weigh the positive from A.

    An election pact is thus almost certainly a very bad idea for the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats, and would only be pursued out of desperation and wishful thinking.

  14. nickp – I don’t get that view either, why people think a hung Parliament is so likely. The thing that determines likelihood of a hung Parliament is the number of seats that third parties or other smaller parties win, not how “divided” the country is. If there are only 2 parties with seats in Parliament then a hung Parliament is almost impossible unless there is a dead-heat in number of seats, even if a party only has a fraction of a percent point lead in votes (or, given FPTP is not proportional, has fewer votes). On the other hand, if the third party is regularly winning 100 seats a hung Parliament would be extremely, extremely likely.

    Given the current position of the Liberal Democrats in the polls, I’d say a hung Parliament is less likely than at other recent elections.

    On the other question, I can’t see a form of electoral pact between the Conservatives and Lib Dems happening. Even if they wanted one, which I doubt they do, I don’t think either could sell it to their parties.

  15. @paulcroft, jayblanc

    Imo the pact will be very understated, patchy, local and behind the scenes.

    In a few selected seats Conservatives could register a paper candidate where they have no chance of winning… LDs similarly. That way each can concentrate their resources elsewhere. Fielding a candidate (even if there is no campaigning) overcomes some of Jay’s objections… not forcing the direct choice.

    I think if you search hard enough you will find some examples of this strategy in the 2011 locals.

  16. @Anthony Wells

    You said “…Chris – It doesn’t “confirm” it, it agrees with it. Just because you are a national newspaper columnists you are no less likely to be wrong than Joe Shmoe on the Clapham Omnibus…I’ve mentioned this before in passing, I should really do a proper post on it….don’t make the mistake of casting such things into iron rules, for they are easily broken…”

    Speaking seriously, I’d be grateful if you *did* do a proper post: that way I could bookmark it alongside your “Too Frequently Asked Questions” and other posts.

    Now, I’m wary about asking you to do stuff: you’re busy, you aren’t paid by your regulars, and all you get is (far too little) gratitude. So please feel free to ignore my request. But if you did so post, I’d be grateful and I’m sure many others would be.

    Regards, Martyn

  17. STATGEEK and AW.
    Very good.

    Heath lost first place in 1974 since he betrayed the Unionists by insisting on OMOV in Northern Ireland and then closed Stormont down and introduced power sharing between the communities.

    Wilson then managed a very narrow win over Heath in October, which he himself described as an awful result, since he expected a proper majority.

    So from 1970, when I was 15, and 1997, when I was 42, all i knew was Labour defeat. In May 1994 Cherie told her husband to go for a political career, while she went for law, having been introduced to one another by Derry Irvine. (he married Donald Dewar’s wife.

  18. Is this the first time David Cameron has been seen as doing less well in his role than Ed Miliband is in his?

  19. As I have said before….
    Hung parliament? Hung with whom???
    The Lib Dems are on course to be annihilated!

  20. *2012 locals*

  21. Oldham East & Saddleworth is instructive on both the split of the LD 2010 vote and Coalition (anti -Lab) tactical voting.

    1997 Lab 42 LD 35 Con 20
    2001 Lab 39 LD 33 Con 16
    2005 Lab 41 LD 33 Con 18
    2010 Lab 32 LD 32 Con 26 (disallowed by judge)
    2011 Lab 42 LD 32 Con 13

    2011 was in the heart of the media love-in with the coalition but look what happened. Lab bigger share of vote even thatn 1997 and despite massive Con tactical voting, LD can’t improve on their vote share. The meltdown of the LD vote and mass defection to Lab happened and it’s real.

    Lab have the Galloway thing to worry about, and Scottish independence, but I have to say…all the real worries are, surely, for Cameron, Clegg et al?

  22. I’ll put it another way.

    All Lab need is the anti-Tory vote. The rump Lab vote may be under 30% but add in the anti Tories and they are home with 40%+.

    It’s done and dusted I’m afraid and the rest is static and white noise.

  23. The other thing I’ve noted about polling.

    Many voters say they think that EM is rubbish, that DC is more PM-ish, that they trust Con more on the economy etc etc while AT THE SAME TIME say they will vote Labour next time.

    Makes you ponder how useful the focus groups really are, doesn’t it? “My party, right or wrong”.

  24. @ Nick P
    Or put it another way ….

    Because of his last budget, Osborne seems to have gifted Labour the next GE with center left Lib Dem voters confirming their intention to stay with Ed Milliband, rather than Clegg.

    I don’t see the gap between Tories and Labour narrowing much, if at all. It may well grow with some very cleverly crafted policies unleashed by the two Ed’s at the right moment nearer 2015, a factor that doesn’t seem to appear on the Tories radar.

  25. nickp:

    am being deliberately pessimistic as I tire of the occasional right wing comment being critical of anyone “calling” a GE from a distance of three years.

    Most of my posts follow your own analysis: its pretty near to impossible to see a way back for either coalition party…. BUt – not totally so.

    What seems as near impossible as one can get is for the Tories to win an overall majority: one of their many problems, which many observers on the right just don’t get is that almost imperceptibly. and over about five decades, this country has moved to a more liberal, left leaning consensus – go from the Lady Chatterley trial to gay marriage for example.

    The tory party, in large numbers, are the antithesis of this sea change and although I actualy believe Cameron to be sincere in many ways he can’t shange that

  26. Oh, and by the way, who appears the best PM is a pretty daft question. Incumbency makes it pretty meaningless: DC probably wouldn’t come first as best opposition leader.

  27. chasglas

    “Alexander is the one in trouble , against an incumbent SNP in Moray”.

    He sure is.

    I think he has so many different kinds of trouble he can’t hope to withstand the cumulative effect. Quite apart from the factors mentioned by OLDNAT and anything DA might have done or failed to do that is particularly unpopular with constituents, the general Highland anti-Con abandonment of the Libdems could be enough in itself.

    By mentioning “Moray” you refer to another hazard that English readers may not appreciate. Look at the map. Moray is the epicentre of the SNP growth.

    The MP is high profile himself, and no slacker, but the MSP will be campaigning for him. As I have said before the Rural Affairs minister would not be recognised in a Glasgow supermarket, but in a farmer’s market he would be a celebrity, and in a fish market, a hero.

    His print media coverage is more frequent than any other minister and it is almost wholly in Murdoch-free trade and local press. Overall, Nicola Sturgeon may wel be the most widely admired minister outwith her own party, but in Moray and the contiguous constituencies that are now yellow on the Scottish Parliament map, she surely is lagging in second place.

  28. R Huckle

    Where is Roly when you need him?

    I have seen much comment about Chloe Smith: here competence, age and inexperience, gender issues protecting her from demotion etc.

    On the strength of a minimal amount of Cadet Force training nearly 60 years ago, I think I remember that there is a name for her important role in government.

    Where there is a foot patrol and the enemy are thought to be hidden somewhere ahead, or there is a risk that there could be a minefield ahead, it was, and maybe still is, the practice to send one member of the patrol out ahead to draw the enemy fire, or so that others could follow in the footsteps of the person leading the way.

    Naturally the officer would select te least useful of his men: the most inexperienced, the troublemaker, the dim.

    I must be the only person who thinks CS may be the most effective member of the government in fulfilling her brief.

  29. You had minefields in the cadets??

    Those were the days….

  30. paulcroft @ nickp:

    “…almost imperceptibly. and over about five decades, this country has moved to a more liberal, left leaning consensus – go from the Lady Chatterley trial to gay marriage for example. ”

    From “Would you let your daughter marry a black man?”


    “Would you trust a half-caste?
    “Would you trust a bass tarred?
    “Would you trust a pure-bred black man?”

    ….. and other qustions ending in “Would you join the Conservative party,… the Labour Party….etc.”

    For those who don’t know the “right” answers, the first two were concieved in moral turpitude, but the black man might be OK.

    The voters in two constituencies (one of them MT’s) have since voted out the questioner.

  31. AW

    Wise words as ever. The person who extrapolates from limited data is either brave or ignorant. Similarly the person who predicts that, because X has never happened, X will never happen.

    The wise use of polling data is, of course, to use it to see trends and big pictures. But trends and big pictures must always be viewed in context of the political situation.

    To me, there is a very important Big Picture that all the polls tell us. It is that, in 23 years, the Tories have only held big poll leads (I’m talking 10+%) for a couple of years or so. And that was in the depths of the worst recession in 80 years.

    That is a quite astonishing fact, when compared to the historical record from pre 1990.

    Of course, that in itself does not mean that the Tories cannot win in 15. In the right circumstances, they could win a majority with 3-4% greater vote share than Labour. And there is always the possibility of skill or fortune producing a decent lead in 15.

    But recent history strongly argues against assuming that this will happen. At the very least, it requires clever political manoeuvring and economic good fortune – 2 things which have been in short supply for most of this administration.

  32. So Murray has failed in his attempt to become the first Scot to win Wmibledon since Bonnie Prince Charlie Nicholas Edward John Louis Casimir Sylvester Severino Maria Stuart – in 1740 something.

    A shame.

    [only made up the “Nicholas” bit amazingly – and that’s only because he played for Arsenal.]

  33. @AMBER

    “Is this the first time David Cameron has been seen as doing less well in his role than Ed Miliband is in his?”


    h ttp:// (Page 67)

  34. AW

    Rawnley’s article makes only marginal use of the numbers.

    He has the sub heading:

    “Cameron’s prospects if increasing his share of the vote look worse, not better, than when he first took power”

    Putting aside the fact that the day after the election the prospect hadn’t changed from the previous day’s poll and the fact that w could quibble about whether he actually “took power” AR lists all the negatives and no positives.

    He could just as easily have written an article that would focus on the negatives for Labour.

    What we can be sure of is that all the “events” will not turn out as bad as imagined, and the Cons are not, right now, in a happy place and need to see the beginnings of a turnaround soon.

    The broad conclusion in the sub-heading doesn’t look far off the mark to me, questionable history or not.

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