Tonight’s YouGov poll for the Sun has topline figures of CON 34%, LAB 44%, LDEM 8%, UKIP 7%, very much in the normal range. On a Monday night you may be wondering where the monthly Populus and ICM polls for the Times and Guardian have got to – my understandiing is that Populus/Times are skipping August, as they have done in past years, and ICM/Guardian will probably be next week.


185 Responses to “YouGov/Sun – CON 34, LAB 44, LD 8, UKIP 7”

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  1. What no football comments?

  2. The next ICM poll will be particularly interesting because they tend to be the most favourable to the Conservatives and the Lib Dems and, accordingly, show the smallest Labour leads. Their last one, on the 22nd July, stuck out like the proverbial thumb, showing a 5% Labour lead amongst a welter of 9-11% leads from other pollsters.

    Do we think they are the gold standard of pollsters rather like our old friend Professor Rawlings & Thrasher is in terms of local government projected vote shares?

  3. @Howard

    “What no football comments?”

    Oh, go on then. I see Villa are ahead of Man U in the league table.

    On alphabetical order!

  4. I think Con should be worried about the over 60 vote on this poll.

  5. NickP:

    …………..and basically anyone eligible to vote.

  6. very worried about the Reds this year, CROSSBAT11.

    The double digit lead looks solid.

  7. If Cameron and the Tories want to win an overall parliamentary majority ever again, he has to do more than win back the UKIP deserters surely? – Even though the above figures would suggest 40% plus share if the two united.

    The Lib Dems have haemorrhaged support and are back to their base of 8-10%, they have lost huge support in the working-class of N. England, Wales and Scotland where they are up against Labour, Plaid and SNP. The Council election of May 2012 suggest that the Lib Dem support left is in the more middle-class and rural areas of southern England – where they had to choose between the Lib Dems or Tory. These people are conservative with a small c, and seem to dislike voting for the ‘Nasty Party’ on principle. Considering that the Tories have not won more than 36% of the popular vote in a GE for 20 years, to win in 2015 Cameron has to win over the UKIP deserters and win over the right of the Lib Dems & Labour?

    But in 2015, with a resurgent Labour, he will need both the UKIP vote and the centre vote… I do not envy him that task. In fact I think that is a very difficult task for any future Tory leader and I don’t exactly see a Liam Fox or a David Davis being able to do it either. For what it’s worth, I see the Tories dragging to right in 2015 and heading off the UKIP vote and just hoping, micawber-esque, for boundary changes and that the Lib Dems revive their own fortunes and take some votes off Labour (unlikely however).

  8. Before anyone refers to the debate between the nice green lady and the, er, other one, on Newsnight, I just remind you that nobody watches this programme whose views count in polling terms.

    It was ghastly to behold though.

  9. @crossbat11 – ” …the gold standard of pollsters”

    Since the local elections in May:

    ICM:
    Con 34-36%, Lab 38-41%

    YouGov:
    Con 31-35%, Lab 41-45%

    ComRes:
    Con 32-34%, Lab 41-42%

    Populus:
    Con 33%, Lab 41%

    IpsosMORI:
    Con 31-33%, Lab 40-43%

    TNS-BMRB:
    Con 30%, Lab 43%

    Angus Reid:
    Con 29-31%, Lab 41-45%

  10. CL1945:

    Its not double digit YET Chris – just 3 points behind their neighbours so far and still ahead of Liddypool.

  11. @BIlly Bob

    Those figures indicate a serious situation for the Conservatives to be in. Even the ICM is hardly “yippie”.

    Very stable too. Polldrums with small waves. Will anything shift perceptions?

  12. ok, not the biggest political story ever, but I wouldn’t mind knowing Labour’s position on Assange and the handling of the affair up to now. Havn’t really heard from them on that. Come to think of it, havn’t seen Ed M on TV for ages.

  13. @KeithP – “a serious situation for the Conservatives to be in… will anything shift perceptions?

    Paul Goodman (Telegraph/ConHome) is saying Cameron must act boldly now, next year will be too late. Interestingly he makes the point that even as opposition leader Cameron was reluctant to make big changes to the shadow cabinet.

    It is probably just random, but YouGov seems to fluctuate depending on how many days the government can go without one or more missteps in the news.

    The report which R Huckle picked out today about civil servants wanting to go on secondment to Labour a year before the next election highlights a bigger problem. The establishment view – which permeates inevitably into the media narrative – is that this administration has indeed been shambolic. Infact they use the words “never again”, the title of an Institute of Government report on coalition policy formation.

  14. @ Ann in Wales (from the previous thread)

    “Well at last a tiny ray of sunshine amidst the gloom. My daughter after gaining an excellent degree from Bristol in 2011,has been unemployed until today.At last a forward thinking employer has taken a risk on a graduate rather than the endless supply of people who are chasing these jobs.I am a socialist through and through, but there has got to be a tangible reward for those who work hard at school and then pay back loans for their university places.”

    CONGRATULATIONS to your daughter!!! That’s awesome news! What a relief this must be for her. I don’t know you personally (in a non-virtual way anyway) or your daughter but I am very happy for her and that news has brightened my day as well.

    I don’t know what it’s like in Britain (I hear things are different in Europe but Europe is a very large and very diverse place) but there is an American cultural assumption, especially by Baby Boomers, that those who aren’t working simply don’t want to work. The reason they don’t have jobs is because they’re lazy, inferior, stupid, self-entitled, aimless, and oblivious to their future needs in life.

    It’s very hard on people, especially if they are highly educated and even moreso if they worked very hard to obtain that educationa nd did well, when they cannot find employment. It’s bad enough that you can’t find work, it’s bad enough that the education and your hard work seemingly means nothing (especially if you’ve got huge student loans). It’s even worse when you have a presumption against you as a result for a circumstance that has occurred through no fault of your own. It becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy for potential employers who will not hire people who are unemployed.

    I agree with your last line except to the degree that I’m not sure that is contradictory to the principles of socialism (I’m not a socialist or don’t consider myself one).

    @ Chris Neville-Smith (from the previous thread)

    “However, in Sweden I understand questioning is often the formal stage before charging someone. You cannot legally charge someone in Sweden without formally questioning them first. So Julian Assange could be at the equivalent stage of what would be CPS charges in UK law. No other country is obliged to send out police officers to questions a suspect prior to extradition, so I don’t see why Sweden should be different.”

    I did not know that. Fascinating stuff. I don’t know what it is but I somewhat enjoy learning about these key legal differences. I can see why this rule would create problems for Swedish authorities attempting to extradite people who they haven’t interviewed first. Do you happen to know if Swedish law turns at all on officer intent in an interview? Or if the suspect’s individual feelings matter more? The reason I ask that is that I’m curious what constitutes a formal questioning? I imagine this would come up when it comes to whether someone can be formally charged with a crime.

  15. @richo quite – i’ve not seen Miliband for ages either. I think Labour have realised that the coalition is doing a good job of damaging itself at the moment.

    Does anyone know when we are likely to see a poll with questions about the Assange affair – whether people support extradition to Sweden and so on?

  16. @ Howard

    “Before anyone refers to the debate between the nice green lady and the, er, other one, on Newsnight, I just remind you that nobody watches this programme whose views count in polling terms.

    It was ghastly to behold though.”

    Obviously, did not see that debate. I actually was politically polled just last week. I almost NEVER get polled. It was a robo-poll on my Congressional race (well it also polled some other stuff). But unfortunately, I didn’t get to finish the poll because it just went on and on and on and on and on with more questions. I had to hang up cause I had someplace else to be (don’t know if my responses were counted at all).

    Anyway, I’m curious to compare Liberalism here (I guess I should ask this of other Lib Dems too). Here’s an interesting political story.

    http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0812/79865.html
    I have to say that I really don’t have much of a problem with this and I don’t get what the big deal is. I mean, it’s mildly amusing and somewhat entertaining (a bunch of GOP Congressmen getting drunk on a foreign junket and going skinny dipping). It’s probably not something I would personally choose to do but I don’t have a big problem with this or see it as a scandal.

  17. [email protected] Chris Neville-Smith

    Minor point, but the CPS is the public prosecutor only in England & Wales.

    The carelessness with which the terms UK, Britain, and England are used would be wholly forgiveable from someone outwith the UK. Those within it really should understand “who does what”.

    The BBC Newsnight presenter referred to the UK Supreme Court as the “English” Supreme Court three times in tonight’s programme.

    Whether he did so out of ignorance, arrogance, or because he lacks the capabilities to present a programme broadcast throughout the UK, I wouldn’t know.

  18. @ Billy Bob

    “Paul Goodman (Telegraph/ConHome) is saying Cameron must act boldly now, next year will be too late. Interestingly he makes the point that even as opposition leader Cameron was reluctant to make big changes to the shadow cabinet.”

    I feel like there’s a lot of second guessing of Cameron’s decisions. I give him props for being consistently behind his Cabinet ministers even in cases of screwups. He’s very loyal. It’s a good trait to have (it can be a bad thing too).

    I wonder if Cameron has ever had to make the following comments: “Rape is rape” and “you can run whatever kind of campaign you’d like but you can’t just make stuff up.” :)

  19. SOCALLIBERAL

    Watching the ABC News on the skinny dipping. Their words and images about the religious significance of the Sea of Galilee were “interesting”.

  20. @ Old Nat

    “Minor point, but the CPS is the public prosecutor only in England & Wales.

    The carelessness with which the terms UK, Britain, and England are used would be wholly forgiveable from someone outwith the UK. Those within it really should understand “who does what”.

    The BBC Newsnight presenter referred to the UK Supreme Court as the “English” Supreme Court three times in tonight’s programme.

    Whether he did so out of ignorance, arrogance, or because he lacks the capabilities to present a programme broadcast throughout the UK, I wouldn’t know.”

    That’s okay. I actually corrected a friend of mine on Facebook the other day for congratulating England and the English on the successful Olympics (and bashing Romney). I think you might be influencing me here!

    And correcting on minor points is fine too, it’s what appellate courts do all the time (and SHOULD do). Actually it’s my joke about the Supreme Court in Criminal Procedure casebooks. The Illinois Supreme Court always gets reversed for being too pro-defendant (“Well, sure the suspect was read his rights but the officer was really mean to him and kinda surly so the evidence should be suppressed” REVERSED), the Arizona Supreme Court always gets reversed for being too pro-prosecution (“so the suspect was locked in a closet for 50 hours and repeatedly beaten until he confessed but is that really coercision? The evidence should be admitted” REVERSED), and the California Supreme Court always gets reversed on minor details that don’t ultimately affect the outcome of the case.

    I think he did it out of ignorance, not arrogance. There are a lot of people in the news media who are far underqualified for their positions and don’t know anything. Being highly paid and being knowledgable seem like mutually exclusive things for many who work in that field these days (at leas the folks who work for CNN).

    I felt that way with the coverage of the Obamacare oral arguments at the Supreme Court. Of course I’m not always right on these things. I went to an oral argument before an appellate court back in June on a case I had worked on for a judge (I was so pleased with myself for finding a way to help a public sector labor union). I figured the judge would be reversed but I was a little bit more hopeful after watching the oral arguments. But a reversal (unpublished so I haven’t been able to read it) took less than two weeks. :(

  21. @ Old Nat

    “Watching the ABC News on the skinny dipping. Their words and images about the religious significance of the Sea of Galilee were “interesting”.”

    Yeah, um, weren’t the first humans butt naked? Isn’t that how god created them? In any case, I’m not an expert on religion or religious places of significance, I think it’s really irrelevant. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not an advocate for public nudity. And really, I have more of a problem with combining alcohol and night swimming (it’s just a bad combination).

    It reminds me of the great SNL line from Bill Clinton on Inauguration night advising the media to dig into Dubya’s background. “Why I know for a fact that back in 1973 at the La Dijon apartments in Houston Texas, George Dubya Bush did three lines of cocaine while participating in a swimming pool orgy. How do I know? I was there!” :)

    Anyway, there are bigger things politicians should be grilled for. For example, politicians who sponsor and vote for legislation and then claim not to support the legislation they in fact support. Or politicians who get massively criticized for the political position they’ve taken, change their public political position on it, get credit for changing their opinion, and then continue to support their original position anyway (while no one is noticing).

    I feel like if British or Scottish politicians did that, they’d get laughed at. Or bad eggs thrown at them.

  22. @OldNat

    The Supreme Court of the UK is only such for Civil cases. In Criminal cases, the Scottish still have their own head and direct final appeals to their own Court of Criminal Appeal, the Scottish High Court of Justiciary.

    I’m surprised you didn’t know that.

  23. @ Jay Blanc

    “The Supreme Court of the UK is only such for Civil cases. In Criminal cases, the Scottish still have their own head and direct final appeals to their own Court of Criminal Appeal, the Scottish High Court of Justiciary.

    I’m surprised you didn’t know that.”

    You say that but didn’t the UK Supreme Court recently overturn a murder conviction that had been upheld by the highest Scottish court? I remember Alex Salmond criticizing the move and being very unhappy with it. I’m going to have to look up this article.

  24. @ SoCal

    It’s the Nat Fraser case which you are looking for:

    The Supreme court was given limited powers to overrule Scotland’s separate judicial system in 2009, if a trial had breached the European convention on human rights. Fraser’s lawyers successfully argued that the non-disclosure of evidence in his original trial breached his rights under article 6 of the convention.

    The Supreme Court gave the Scottish Court leave to retry Nat Fraser based on the ‘correct’ evidence. He was re-tried & convicted a second time for the same offence.
    8-)

  25. @ Amber Star

    “It’s the Nat Fraser case which you are looking for:

    The Supreme court was given limited powers to overrule Scotland’s separate judicial system in 2009, if a trial had breached the European convention on human rights. Fraser’s lawyers successfully argued that the non-disclosure of evidence in his original trial breached his rights under article 6 of the convention.

    The Supreme Court gave the Scottish Court leave to retry Nat Fraser based on the ‘correct’ evidence. He was re-tried & convicted a second time for the same offence.”

    Thank you. It reminds me of an early case where the Virginia Supreme Court wouldn’t recognize the authority of the regular Supreme Court and the Supreme Court enforced its will anyway. As to what you point out about its authority over Scottish courts on criminal convictions, it’s actually equivalent to the power that the U.S. Supreme Court has over convictions in state courts. Who appoints and who confirms UK Supreme Court Justices? And do they get life tenure or do they have limited terms? Do they have law clerks?

    I don’t know enough about the European Convention on Human Rights. I wasn’t aware that it included criminal procedure protections (some have said that the U.S. is rare to have constitutional criminal procedure).

    You know, the fact that he was retried and convicted is an example I enjoy of why I’m okay with appellate courts reversing convictions. Courts need to get it right and sometimes that requires overturning convictions and ordering retrials. It’s not always popular but it’s neccessary.

  26. @ Roger Mexico (if you’re around)

    A few months ago, back in June, you asked me how Jesse Kelly (R-AZ) could get any votes, let alone 45% of the vote in a special election to replace Gabby Giffords (D-AZ) given his past history of using portraits of Representative Giffords for target practice (among other things).

    Here lies an answer in another race with a Republican who makes Jesse Kelly seem slightly normal:

    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/08/20/1122397/-New-PPP-flash-poll-finds-Todd-Akin-s-standing-virtually-unchanged?showAll=yes

    Now some have noted that this poll may have some flaws because it is oversampling Republican turnout (another pollster that gave Akin an 11% lead last week would, on the same demographic distribution, give Claire McAskill a lead in this poll…..so would 2010 turnout distributions). But there’s a more important thing here to note in the crosstabs, over a third of Republicans do not like this man. 51% of them strongly disagree with his comments. YET, his opponent only draws 10% of Republican voters. The pollster called this the result of the “hyperpolarization” of American politics. I think it’s the hyperpolarization of the right wing.

    Now this guy isn’t some run of the mill Christine O’Donnell/Sharon Angle type either. He is a sitting Congressman, who’s been in office for years. In fact, he was the founder of the Teabagger Caucus and a leading legislative ally of Paul Ryan.

    It’d be a shame if he had to drop out of the race. He only won his primary last week.

  27. Many thanks to Roger Mexico for pointing out that Panelbase (unlike Progressive Scottish Opinion) are now a member of the British Polling Council, and will therefore in future follow the standard disclosure rules. Among other work, they have been conducting a series of Scottish independence referendum polls for the Sunday Times, eg. latest one:

    No 44% (-1)
    Yes 35% (-1)

    http://scotgoespop.blogspot.se/2012/08/panelbase-poll-olympics-boost-support.html

    Membership list of the BPC now:

    Angus Reid Public Opinion
    ComRes
    Dods Polling
    GfK NOP Social Research
    ICM
    Ipsos MORI
    LucidTalk
    Marketing Means
    Opinium
    ORB
    Panelbase
    Populus
    RMG Clarity
    Survation
    TNS-BMRB
    YouGov

    ht tp://www.britishpollingcouncil.org/officers.html

  28. We have less than 2 years to go until the next general election. No, not the one to the UK Parliament, but the one to the European Parliament. Paddy Power have a set of prices available on most seats:

    European Parliament election, 2014 – largest UK party

    Lab 8/15
    UKIP 2/1
    Con 11/2
    LD 40/1
    Grn 100/1

    Both LAB and LD are priced too short IMHO, and I consider UKIP to be value at 2/1.

    Remember, last time around (in 2009) Labour were in the depths of their Gordon Brown depression, and had an horrific Euro election, way below even the dire expectation management efforts at the time. The poor Tory performance, managing only a one point increase, was a strong pointer to wiser/neutral observers that it was highly unlikely than David Cameron would achieve CON MAJ the following year.

    Euro election 2009 – Result in Great Britain and Gibraltar (ie. excl. NI)

    Con 28% (+1)
    UKIP 17% (n/c)
    Lab 16% (-7)
    LD 14% (-1)
    Grn 9% (+2)
    BNP 6% (+1)
    SNP 2% (+1)
    ED 2% (+1)
    Chr 2% (+2)

  29. @SoCaLiberal

    I don’t know if it is being picked up in the US media, but no one here has questioned the “I understand from doctors” part.

    No doubt Todd Akin is selective about where he gets his advice – but it must be worrying that there are doctors who allow moral prejudice to blind their clinical understanding.

    On Paul Goodman, he held the same position in David Cameron’s shadow cabinet for five years – before deciding to leave parliament and “second guess” the leadership from platforms in the Telegraph and ConservativeHome. As Martyn commented over the weekend, Cameron seems to have lost control (this is if his mandate ever stretched very far) – maybe it is wiser not to attempt to stamp one’s authority too hard, but the party does seem to lack a sense of direction atm.

    h
    ttp://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/david-cameron/9486674/Be-bold-Prime-Minister-make-Mr-Cable-your-Home-Secretary.html

  30. SoCalLiberal

    Actually I have a little bit of sympathy for those taking the Todd Atkins line. After all if you believe in the magic “human-ness” of a foetus, no matter how small, the reason that foetus came into existence should be irrelevant. For a few moments in their life these people aren’t being hypocritical.

    Of course when it comes to justifying that belief about a foetus, they then have problems. “God told me so”[1] isn’t a particularly good reason under the Constitution and I suspect few of those taking this line are strict vegetarians with a Jain-like reverence for all life. And of course if they or someone in their family needs a termination it’s different. Still the few times in their life when they attempt some sort of moral consistency (on any basis other than self-interest) ought to be pointed out.

    [1] Like most “fundamentalist” beliefs, the horror about abortion is comparatively recent in historical terms. While the Christian tradition was never happy about them, first trimester terminations were regarded as fairly minor sins. Muslim and Jewish traditions were pretty relaxed about early and sometimes all abortions, though this seems to be changing as some clerics realise this is another splendid reason for persecuting women.

  31. SoCal

    I don’t know enough about the European Convention on Human Rights. I wasn’t aware that it included criminal procedure protections (some have said that the U.S. is rare to have constitutional criminal procedure).

    The ECHR doesn’t explicitly cover strict procedure, but Article 6 is about the right to a fair trial and the police or prosecution not disclosing significant evidence would be seen as breaching that.

  32. A couple of things that could well become major stories in 2013, and which may have a significant impact on support for the Coalition:

    From April, the amount of money the Treasury gives to town halls to redistribute as council tax benefit is being cut by 10 per cent. Around six million people currently have all their council tax paid or are given some money towards it – the average payment is almost £16 a week. Benefits being paid to the elderly are protected, so the cuts will fall heavily on the unemployed and those in low-paid jobs. We could be seeing a new Poll Tax…

    The badger cull will inevitably stir passions amongst many currently non-‘political’ people. Labour seems to be being a bit quiet on this. Cynics amongst us may think that they can predict the damage to caring Conservatism caused by having nightly TV images of wounded and dead wild animals and the Government trying to legitimise this…

  33. from what I recall, localised culling of a few badgers by farmers will lead to an increase in bovine TB rather than help eradicate it. Pertubation effect.

    To be effective you’d need a massive widespread cull, probably by gassing. Which would be politically unacceptable.

    But this halfway house of allowing farmers to get a licence to shoot their own badgers, likely to be worst of all possible worlds. No help reducing the disease, possibly making it worse, and loads of political fallout and possible anti-farmer protests in the South West.

  34. BBC reporting unexpected drop in tax receipts and increased borrowing. Apparently July is normally a good month.

  35. Low tax receipts for July? Surely a statistical blip caused by, er, it being a month with four letters in the name and ending with Y..

    The gap between forecast and actual is £3bn.

    Some of this is surely attributable to more workers being ‘self-employed’ and/or part-time. Hence lower income tax/NICs receipts.

    But I’m sure the Treasury and the Chancellor has accurately predicted the gap in the Budget…

  36. Presumably the fact that the BBC are reporting the very poor debt figures means the government will accuse them of left wing bias and a refusal to back British industry.

    The figures themselves are highly disappointing, although in isolation we shouldn’t draw too much from them. Tax receipts are down, but there was a big hit on corporation tax from the Elgin gas field shut down, and self assessment returns are entered in July and August, depending how close to the end July deadline they were submitted, so until we have the August figures we can’t be certain there hasn’t been a big spike in last minute returns stretching into August.

    Having said that, the returns since the start of the year have been poor and deteriorating, so this isn’t just a single poor month – we’ve had around 5 months on the trot of poor figures, and there is a growing question mark over whether Osborne will still be able to say the deficit is reducing at the end of this year.

    To add to his worries, this mornings CBI industrial trends survey shows a further slump in factory orders for July, with both export and domestic orders falling. There is also a weakening three monthly outlook as well, in both consumer goods but more worryingly in the investment goods sector.

    I really think it’s time for IDS and others to keep quiet about perceived bias on the employment stats reporting. It’s clear from a myriad of sources that the economy is going backwards, with the key industrial, export and investment sectors suffering very badly. Expect the positive employment stats to start to reflect this negative factors shortly, and stand back and wonder in awe at a government that has assiduously ignored growth, yet seems surprised when their much vaunted recovery starts to implode.

    I’m not a lion, but I am being led by donkeys.

  37. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-19329758

    Will borrowing be above target at the end of the financial year ?

    Yes I think probably will be, by about £10bn. I think the target is £126bn and I think this will be missed by a fair amount. If in July they have had to borrow, then I predict higher borrowing than expected in the remaining months of the current financial year.

    In the Autumn statement, the chancellor (Osborne ?) will announce revised borrowing levels, presumably up to 2017, as I think the last statement was that far ahead.

  38. ALEC

    @”there is a growing question mark over whether Osborne will still be able to say the deficit is reducing at the end of this year.”

    It has been clear that 2012/13 deficit will be higher than the previous years for a few months now.

    The Autumn Statement will be very very difficult for GO , and for the Government.

    If they can no longer say that they are reducing the Deficit , Labour is handed a huge PR advantage .

    The economy could still be improving slightly , whilst deficits don’t. There is an obvious tax collection time lag.

    Not looking good at all.

  39. @Colin

    “The economy could still be improving slightly , whilst deficits don’t. There is an obvious tax collection time lag.”

    Ironically, to restore our economy to growth may require a short term increase in the budget deficit.

  40. nickp

    BBC reporting unexpected drop in tax receipts and increased borrowing. Apparently July is normally a good month.

    It could be that some Comedian as found another way to avoid tax.

  41. “It could be that some Comedian as found another way to avoid tax.2

    Or pop star.

    One bit of good news. Apparently Supper with Sam (country suppers?) is booming.

  42. @Stuart Dickson

    EU 2004 > GE 2005 ~~ EU 2009 > GE 2010

    Con 26.7% > 32.4% (+5.7) ~~ 27.7% > 36.1% (+8.4)
    Lab 22.6% > 35.2% (+12.6) ~~ 16.5% > 29% (+12.5)
    LD 14.9% > 22% (+7.1) ~~ 13.7% > 23% (+9.3)
    UKIP 16.1% > 2.2% (-13.9) ~~ 16.5% > 3.1% (-13.4)
    Grn 5.8% > 1% (-4.8%) ~~ 8.1% > 0.9% (-7.2)
    BNP 4.9% > 0.7% (-4.2) ~~ 6.2% > 1.9% (-4.3)
    SNP 1.4% > 1.5% (-0.1) ~~ 2.1% > 1.7% (-0.4)
    ED 0.8% > 0.1% (-0.7) ~~ 1.8% > 0.2% (-1.6)
    Chr 0.4% > 0.03% (-0.37) ~~ 1.6% > 0.1% (-1.5)

    This is pretty meaningless of course, except that there are some consistent features. It does suggest fewer left-leaning voters will turn out in EU elections. Differential turnout distorts the amount of churn between the parties, which is nevertheless there… but might there have been a potential for some churn between UKIP and LD, which has gone unrecognised till now?

    Anthony did a piece on where the BNP vote likely goes:

    h
    ttp://ukpollingreport.co.uk/blog/archives/2172

  43. @Colin – I think you are correct, and the coalition is entering the real pressure period now.

    What I find very interesting has been the observations of a number of economists on what to do next. The emerging consensus (even 17 of the 20 who wrote to the Times supporting GO pre election now back this) are saying a stimulus is needed of some description, and with the deficit now rising it’s extremely difficult to see how Osborne can avoid some kind of Plan B.

    What I do find fascinating is the fact that he really didn’t need to cut capital spending to meet his deficit target. People forget that he claimed to be able to eliminate the structural deficit in 4 years, but he started off doing this by sharp cuts in capital investment. This had a pretty rapid effect on the real economy, particularly in construction and building related service sectors, but is difficult to reverse quickly.

    The odd thing is that cutting capital spend does not help him meet his key structural deficit target, so there is a very strong case to argue that he had the right target but cut the wrong spending. Because of the general multiplier effect and the impact on wider confidence, he has actually made his own target even harder to meet.

    Clearly there was a case to be made in 2010 that a clear deficit reduction strategy had to be in place to ensure the markets remained compliant, but in reality the markets wouldn’t have been bothered if the structural deficit target was 4 years or 6 – just so long as it was credible. Indeed, if the markets knew then that we would be entering a year long recession and performing significantly worse than the Eurozone, I think they would have been far less benign back then.

    The EZ situation is also highly significant. This is Osborne’s last get out of jail card, and it isn’t working. UK is performing much worse the EZ as a whole, and our performance looks utterly dire compared to France and Germany in particular. If the EZ was the cause of our woes, why aren’t we matching them?

    Chancellors can sometimes get away with misguided economic policies, but Osborne’s real problem is that he has undercut his own political target, while setting up the OBR that will prevent him from redefining the structural element of the deficit in the way that Brown redefined the economic cycle to suite his golden rules.

    Apart from calling his strategy wrong headed throughout, I also suggested that even if he met his structural deficit target but we still had an actual deficit, voters would think he had failed, and that the OBR would return to bite him on the backside by presenting unpleasant facts in a way that the coalition could not shrug off.

    Osborne’s failure has been primarily economic, but he has also displayed a very poor grasp of the politics of the economy too.

  44. If you knock the banks you musn’t be surprised if they take themselves elsewhere. Hamburg is allegedly one of the places the Chinese like to do business these days.

  45. “It does suggest fewer left-leaning voters will turn out in EU elections.”

    I think a strong factor is that many voters use the EU elections as a vote on Europe. A left-sympathising voter in a general election may vote for UKIP as a protest against the way Europe’s going. (The left-wing anti-EU parties are out there, but they’ve never really been able to get themselves on the same footing as UKIP.)

    IMHO, it would be good for democracy to have a prominent left-wing Eurosceptic party on offer in the European parliament elections, such as No2EU. Unfortunately, the non-transferable closed-list system of PR makes this difficult.

  46. CROSSBAT11

    THere is certainly a head of steam building up for the ubiquitous ” infrastructure” spend.

    Not convinced you can just turn that sort of tap on for short term immediate effect.

    I have just watched yet another unbelievable own goal by the Government.

    The NHS intiative on overseas expansion has been headlines all morning.

    The obvious question being asked is how can this not effect UK NHS focus. THe Director of Moorfields Hospital Gulf venture explains that it doesn’t-but the tenor of reporting-particularly the BBC on both radio & tv is -more “privatisation”.

    So what clown decided that right now was the best time to stoke the embers of the “NHS Privatisation” debate ?

    More than that-this initiative is reported by PULSE thus :-

    ” It will build on NHS Global, an initiative introduced in 2010 by former health secretary Andy Burnham to help the NHS capitalise on the global healthcare market.”

    PULSE refers to Moorfields Dubai venture-it started in 2007.

    ……………yet I have just watched Burnham, grinning & smirking as he tells BBC tv what a terrible thing this is-more Privatisation by the wicked Tories who are intent on “destroying” the NHS we know & love.

    When are Conservative leaders going to wake to this sort of thing?

    Is anyone going to respond to Burnham?-or will he have achieved yet another brilliant Labour Bandwagon Performance , which somehow avoids any examination whatsoever of their own record & policies on the government action being criticised.

    This really is quite unbelievably poor communication of policy, and non-existent political skills.

  47. Good Afternoon all, after a terrible night in Everton.

    Just heard the news about the deficit. What I fail to understand is why people are surprised that tax receipts fall, and government spending on welfare rises in times of Downturns in the economy.

  48. Colin:

    Amused by your description of Burnham “grinning and smirking”.

    I wonder if perhaps he just smiled pleasantly at the interviewer and your inbuilt prejudice kicked in – just a teeny bit.

  49. @Colin – “THere is certainly a head of steam building up for the ubiquitous ” infrastructure” spend.
    Not convinced you can just turn that sort of tap on for short term immediate effect.”

    I’m also a little worried about some of the ideas out there. Building houses is needed, but for social reasons first, with the economic benefits a secondary factor, in my view.

    Road building provides a kick to the construction sector, but I’m more sceptical that marginal gains from slightly smoother journeys really do much for long term competitiveness. There’s more of an argument on this for new railways, but timescales on this wouldn’t help us right now.

    Where I am really disappointed is in the complete lack of any structured assistance for investment in productivity and new capacity. Apart from capital spending, Osborne also cut investment allowances and university research spending – all highly useful in building innovation and capacity. The loss of the RDA’s was also damaging to investment, although these weren’t always very efficient and did need some level of reform.

    Some sectors are doing really well at using the recession to build for the future (the UK auto industry) but many others need targeted help, and the lack of any kind of investment or industrial policy is really telling.

    Neither of the competing set of solutions from the left (build houses, roads, railways) or from the right (cut taxes, squeeze welfare and slash regulations) begin to address the serious need for a massive effort on industrial investment, and both just hark back to knee jerk ideological responses that are based more on political belief systems than economics. On their own, both solutions would create more problems than they solve, and the focus needs to be on developing productivity, enhancing productive assets and improving skills, so that we can compete more effectively and be ready for expansion whenever circumstances improve.

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