Lots of polls tonight. We have figures for ComRes, Opinium and ICM with YouGov and Survation to come.

Looking at voting intentions first, ComRes in the Independent on Sunday is the most unusual (and hence probably the one we should pay least attention to), with topline figures of CON 35%(+2), LAB 39%(-3), LDEM 10%(nc), UKIP 8%(nc). The Labour lead is the lowest ComRes have shown since before the budget. Normal caveats about polls showing unusual movements apply – sure, it may be a sign of Labour’s lead falling, or may be normal margin of error. Let’s see if other polls are showing a similar pattern…

An Opinium poll in the Observer meanwhile has shares of CON 30%(-2), LAB 42%(+2), LDEM 8%(-2), UKIP 10%(+1). In contrast to ComRes, this is the largest lead Opinium have shown for Labour, although not radically different from their recent polling which has been showing an average Labour lead of ten points or so.

YouGov’s full figures haven’t been released yet, but the Sunday Times political editor Isabel Oakeshott has tweeted that the poll shows a 9 point Labour lead, so in line with YouGov’s normal polling. Nothing at all yet from the expected Survation poll.

ICM don’t ask a standard voting intention question for the Sunday Telegraph, instead asking respondents to estimate what they think the shares of the vote will be at the next general election. Public predictions have the Conservatives on 31%, Labour on 37% and the Liberal Democrats on 18%.

Looking at other questions, all the polls seemed to have gone for questions asking people to compare Clegg and Cable as Lib Dem Dem leader. They all suggest Cable as a better bet… but not by a radical amount. ComRes asked if people agree that Vince Cable would make a better leader than Nick Clegg, 27% say yes, 25% say no, 48% don’t know. ICM asked people who they thought would attract more voters to the Lib Dem party – 21% said Clegg, 32% Cable. Opinium asked how likely people were to vote Lib Dem with Clegg as leader and how likely they were with Cable as leader – 12% said they were very or fairly likely to vote for them with Nick, rising only marginally to 14% with Vince. YouGov have done some hypothetical “how would you vote with Cable” as leader questions, with Lib Dem support going from 9% with Clegg to 12% with Cable. I will update on that properly tomorrow.

22 Responses to “Tonight’s polls so far”

  1. Tim Montgomerie’s rolling poll analysis on Twitter is good for a laugh:

    19 September: “I’m amazed people still obsess about once-in-a-month Populus/ICM etc polls when @YouGov provides a daily tracker.”

    23 September: “RT @Andrew_ComRes ComRes for S Mirror/IoS: Con 35% LAb 39% LD 10% UKIP 8% Other 8% http://ht.ly/dUK7I < BAD NEWS FOR ED MILIBAND"

  2. So, If the 9 point Labour lead versus the 7 point tweet is anything to go by, Vince as leader instead of Nick would, in theory, cost Labour a couple of points.

  3. Amber

    While pollsters ask (or are paid to ask) some fairly daft questions, the “how might you vote, if Party X had a different leader” question seems one of the daftest.

    If it has any substance buried within it, that would relate to VI varying on a shift in perception of the political stance of Party X. That might be there, but seems far more likely to be overwhelmed by responses from those who see such change as being this week’s “Personality politician” Game Show mob – well done the media!

    Panel based pollsters like YG should be able to track those members who shift VI on the basis of such factors, and ascertain the proportion of the voting public who are media mugs.

    It would be interesting to find out if they are a significant, or just a minimal , minority of voters.

  4. A big factor in the run-up to the next election will be the interplay between Con and UKIP VI.

    Farage is hoping to build the party as a genuine alternative to the Tories, at the same time continuing to hitch a ride (UKIP as semi-internal pressure group) by holding out the prospect of an electoral pact in return for an in-out EU referendum.
    He clearly has a number of Conservative commentators/stategists in a tizz over how many seats they could lose if UKIP polls even a percent or two higher at the next election than they did last time.

    There was some speculation on HuffingtonPost about the identity of the 14 Tory MPs who have so far written to the 1922 chairman Graham Brady.

    Mark Reckless is a case in point. Complained in 2005 that the UKIP vote enabled Bob Marshall Andrews to hold Rochester. In 2010 Andrews had retired, boundary changes favoured the Tories, and UKIP stood down their candidate because Reckless had made all the right noises.

    In 2010 UKIP offered a pact, were ignored by Cameron, and stood down a good many candidates anyway. Lord Pearson would have liked more to stand down. It won’t be so easy next time, but either way UKIP will act like a little tug steering the bulk of the Conservative party in their direction.

  5. Billy Bob,

    The Tories will never make an electoral pact with UKIP in a million years, because the moment a UKIP MP gets elected is analogous with the moment that Roy Jenkins signed Labour’s “absent” slip from Number 10 for 15 years back in 1982.

    And Nigel Farage, who is a canny cookie, knows that. The “Let’s Do A Deal” ploy was clever because (a) it makes for a news story without actually being controversial within the party and (b) it says to disgruntled Tories, who are UKIP’s natural hunting ground, “Hey guys, we’re like the Tories, except we don’t like Europe!”

    2014 is the big one for UKIP. If they win and Cameron doesn’t pull off a miracle between now and 2015, then we see the first UKIP MP in 2015. It’s similar to what happened in Hamilton back in 1967: once a radical alternative party gets an MP, it immediately wins over a huge number of people who were sympathetic but don’t like to vote for losers (for some reason that escapes me).

  6. Good Morning All.

    A tighter situation in the polls, apparently.

  7. YouGov –
    Con 34, Lab 43, Lib 8

    Approval –
    Cameron -21
    Miliband -29
    Clegg -63
    Clegg has now hit a lower point than Gordon Brown’s lowest – of course, if YouGov had been doing daily polls back then, Brown may have fallen lower – but in PR terms, that’s pretty bad news.

    VI when prompting for Clegg/Miliband/Cameron –
    Lab 41 (-2)
    Con 34 (nc)
    Lib 9 (+1)
    So as previously, reminding people of Miliband knocks about 2% off VI – but not the sort of dreadful figures that would cost them too dearly, whatever VI they have closer to the election.

    Prompting for Cable replacing Clegg –
    Lab 39 (-2)
    Con 34 (nc)
    Lib 12 (+3)
    So Cable could win some voters back, but still not enough to regain the sort of numbers they lost.
    This is, of course, hypothetical and a more centre-left Cable, given a few years as leader and distance from the Tories, may make the difference.

    Prompting for Boris –
    Lab 38 (-3)
    Con 38 (+4)
    Lib 9 (nc)
    This’ll be quite damaging for the PM – but the big question is, what would happen to Boris if he had to make unpopular cuts?
    Remember, Cameron was beating Labour (slightly) at his post-veto heights and Boris hasn’t been damaged by the government’s decisions.

    Prompting for Boris + Cable
    Con – 39 (+5)
    Lab – 35 (-6)
    Lib – 11 (+2)
    Pretty bad poll numbers for Labour – so perhaps switching for Boris a year or so before the election might work (before much damage could be done) – but that’s a year and a half in to the future, so who knows what could happen?
    I expect *this* hypothetical question is the one that the Tories and the press run with.

    If you had to choose, which sort of government would you like to see?
    Labour government led by Ed – 42%
    Con government led by Dave – 39%
    With DKs removed (so it can be compared to VI) –
    Lab – 51.9%
    Con – 48.1%
    So in a straight race between Ed (and Lab) and Dave (and Con), Ed wins by a slight margin.
    I’m so glad this question has finally been asked – not only does it give us a better picture of Lab vs Con but it might put some of the ‘But if people had to choose between Lab and Con, they’d obviously pick Con, even if Lab is ahead!’ narratives.
    Of course, this figure is subject to change if the Cons start to regain voters (and I hope that YouGov ask it again).

    “If you had to choose, which of the following would you most like to see happen for the next few years?”
    Con/Lib coalition – 19%
    Con minority government – 26%
    Lab/Lib coalition – 30%
    On first glance, Lib/Lab seems the most popular option, but ‘some sort of Con government’ beats it with 45%.

    Pretty bad numbers for Clegg also, but I’ll let someone else dissect that. ;)


    Good Morning and thanks for your analysis. Indeed, the Lab-Con race is much tighter than last week’s euphoric-triggering numbers suggested (for the left).

    The Cons cannot be written off.

  9. I wonder why the UKIP vote is not tracked on this site as for the three main parties? The UKIP support seems to be silmilar to the LDs and surely should now be included? Otherwise it looks like either bias, prejudice or makes the site look a bit dated.

    (I am not a UKIP member but was just trying to research changes to their support).

  10. “The Cons cannot be written off.”
    They can’t – no, obviously.

    But for LibDems to gain support, it seems that they need to move closer to Labour – and if we were facing these sorts of numbers, it’d be interesting to see if Labour preferred opposition or would run as an official coalition with the LibDems – something that would probably actually please both Miliband and Cable.

    Only time will tell – what seems to be clear though, is that the Conservatives need a leader who isn’t tainted by government and is seen as a more cross-partisan figure (like Boris is).
    While Boris likes to offend people, he’s far more able to be pragmatic on policy if it means winning.
    So we could be looking at PM Boris in 2015 (and if we start to recover fully 2015-2020, potentially a two-term Boris).

  11. “Potentially a two-term Boris”

    It’s a bit early in the morning on a Sunday for the ingestion of psychotropic substances surely LOL

  12. Good data Mr. Fringe.

    Have taken a quick piccy of the leadership ratings (ignore first data point on regional charts):


    On a UK level, Clegg’s ratings have been consistently disappearing, and as you say, a new low. Be sure to note the Y-axis scale on each graph. Clegg’s Scotland ratings are quite shocking.

  13. Rob S
    I would have said the same thing about a two-term Bush, but look what happened there.

    And look at him in London – VI for London (when asked purely in a London poll) is +50% for Labour, Labour got 41.1% of the vote in the Assembly elections (up 13.1% – gained from both Con and Lib) and yet Boris still won the Mayoral election on a greater percentage of first preference votes than in 2008.

    Interestingly, putting 39/35/11 through a swing calculator (used AW’s and EC’s, current boundaries) gives around
    AW –
    Con 309 (+2), Lab 296 (+38), Lib 18 (-39)
    EC –
    Con 312 (+5), Lab 299 (+41), Lib 12 (-45)

    So a Lab/Lib electoral pact would push Labour and the LibDems in to having a majority of seats as a coalition – even with Lab being so far behind the Cons.
    This would also allow Libs to avoid the ‘we’ll talk to the biggest party first’ – because they’d be running from the start as an alliance.

    Seems that it may be in the Con’s best interest to finally go for electoral reform – a separately elected executive (assuming direct elections and not electoral college – EC would be much more difficult) could push them in to government, even if the parliament would have a majority against them.

  14. Good Morning All, again.

    Has anyone seen the Survation Poll in the Daily Mail?

    Lib Dems in fourth place and Cons on 29%

  15. @Tinged Fringe

    Very interesting analysis. It suggests to me that the Labour lead is actually very flaky as I have suspected all along.

  16. Has anyone seen the Survation Poll in the Daily Mail?

    Lib Dems in fourth place and Cons on 29%


  17. Another daft coalition idea that will annoy voters and be reflected in polling. Nick Clegg has just announced on Andrew Marr, that the government will legislate to allow parents/grandparents to use their pension pots to act as guarantee against the mortgages taken out by children/grandchildren.

    The downside is that if the children then default on their mortgages and there is repossession or there are other debt issues leading to bankruptcy, the pension pot will be at risk.

    I cannot see many people wanting to risk their pensions and this will be a headache to lenders/pension companies.

    Sounds an easy idea to announce, but the detail is far more difficult.

  18. NICK.
    I just googled the newspaper and found the article

  19. Just saw Clegg on Andrew Marr, claiming that the LDs were 18% in one poll “thats not bad – is it?”.
    Had to come on here to check.

    I expect an apology from Clegg immediately for mis-reading the question the 18% was in response to.

  20. Can’t find nuffink.

  21. I think the next election which let’s not forget is a political age away considering the comments of HW will be extremely close…….can’t see an overall majority once again…… i think a Con/LD coalition is the most likely scenario . I think the media for their own reasons always seem to underestimate LD support ….. you only have to look a the % gained in the last local elections to gain a real perspective away from the polls.

  22. Not that interested in mid-term polls however it does amuse me that some Labour supporters seem to believe the election won already, it seems to me that all the bad press the coalition has had in the last few months Labour should be much further ahead in the polls than they are, maybe it really is E.M holding them back or maybe the Labour/protest vote is not as strong as the polls suggest, I only say this because as it seems the economy is beginning to pick up and unemployment slowly going down, D.C doesn’t have to do that much to increase the Tories ratings, were as Labour will have to start coming up with policies that will appeal to the centre ground voter which from a left leaning opposition may not be so easy.