The monthly ComRes phone poll for the Independent has been published and has topline figures of CON 35%(+2), LAB 42%(-2), LDEM 12%(+2), Others 11%(-2).
ComRes also asked a hypothetical voting intention question on how people would vote if Vince Cable was the Liberal Democrat leader. Like YouGov have done recently they first asked a control question asking how people would vote with the current party leaders, which had vote shares of CON 35%, LAB 39%, LDEM 14%, Other 12% (as YouGov have found in the past, mentioning Cameron, Miliband and Clegg in the question seems to reduce Labour’s support… although in this case ComRes’s method was slightly different to their normal question as it omitted the “squeeze question”).
ComRes then asked how people would vote if the leaders were Cameron, Miliband and Cable, producing results of CON 34%(down 1), Labour 38%(down 1), Lib Dem 18%(up 4) – suggesting the Liberal Democrats would indeed do substantially better with Vince Cable as leader than with Nick Clegg as leader.
I will add all my usual caveats about hypothetical party leader questions – they are asking people to say how they would vote based on what they imagine the party would do if X was leader, when in reality they don’t know what policies they would pursue, what direction they would take the party and so on. Nevertheless, such polls do help shape the political narrative and it is not exactly helpful for a party leader to have polls showing alternative leaders would be doing better than them.
I would expect to see more polls along these lines in coming days (YouGov have done the same in tomorrows Sun and someone in the comments here reported being asked similar questions by ICM in a telephone interview over the weekend, although ICM do carry out fieldwork for other companies so it is possible that it was the same poll).