This morning’s YouGov poll for the Sun has topline figures of CON 31%, LAB 45%, LDEM 10%, UKIP 7%. A fourteen point Labour lead is certainly not unprecedented (YouGov had them that far ahead back in June) and not outside the normal margin of error, but wouldn’t be a bad boost from the Labour party conference.

More interesting are the changes to how Ed Miliband himself is seen. YouGov repeated a bank of questions about Miliband that were asked before the beginning of the party conference, and they show a positive change in public perceptions of Ed. The percentage of people who think he has made it clear what he stands for is up 12 points from 24% to 36% (49% think he has still not made it clear), the percentage of people thinking he is up to the job of Prime Minister is up 6 points from 25% to 31% (47% still think he isn’t). There is more modest movement on whether he is seen as a strong leader, up three points from 16% to 19%, but it is still in the right direction.

On the fortnightly Best Prime Minister question Cameron still leads, but by a narrower margin – 31% think Cameron would be the best PM, 27% think Ed Miliband would be the better choice. While Ed’s ratings are significantly up, there are clearly still some reservations amongst Labour voters – still only 64% of Labour voters say Ed would be the best PM.

All in all, it appears to be a thumbs up for Miliband. It hasn’t transformed public perceptions of Ed, but at the end of the day it would be unrealistic to expect it to, it has moved perceptions in the right direction for him. What remains to be seen now is whether it lasts, or whether it is the transitory effect of positive publicity.

392 Responses to “YouGov/Sun – CON 31, LAB 45, LDEM 10, UKIP 7”

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    @”I think the proper reply in that case would be to say “my voting is on record but is not relevant to the decision”

    Yes-that would have been the mealy mouthed way to respond ,& no doubt have been preferred by DC.

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  2. @Amber,

    “I am wondering how they came to time it so precisely.”

    Me too!

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  3. In addition, the time limit doesn’t apply for abortions due to disability or abnormality, not something I agree with, but it’s a red herring in terms of this debate.

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  4. Sorry that was a response to Colin’s last post.

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  5. @Colin,

    “Some would see this as an advantage-not a problem, in that it would effectively stop third party judgements being made about the quality of life after birth, of unborn Downs children .”

    As someone who voluteers for MENCAP and knows people with Downs, I totally agree with this!!

    I really must be turning into a Tory! ;P

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  6. @Hannah,

    Are you a Conservative voter?

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    @”the time limit doesn’t apply for abortions due to disability or abnormality,”

    In 2011 , of the2307 legal abortions under “Ground E”,512 were Downs Syndrome.17 ( 12%) of those were over 24 weeks.

    Abortion Statistics.
    England & Wales 2011
    May 2012

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  8. “Some would see this as an advantage-not a problem, in that it would effectively stop third party judgements being made about the quality of life after birth, of unborn Downs children .”

    Who are these 3rd parties that make judgements? The pregnant woman?

    Not all women are financially equipped for life with a disabled child. Not all women are mentally equipped for life with a disabled child. Not all women have a support network in place to assist them with coping with a disabled child.

    I had an abortion many years ago whilst in an unstable relationship. I was a mother of 2 and had a husband that was mentally abusing me. A third child would have been harmful to my mental state and very likely to the child also.

    But I guess I should shut up before I am accused of being nothing more than a “shouty woman” as decided by the likes of ManintheMiddle.

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  9. I guess the disability thing hits home because I am dyspraxic (was diagnosed when I was about 8) and have a bit of AS, so would my parents have aborted me on this basis even though my disabilities are only slight? I know they wouldn’t, as they are both anti-abortion as it happens, but if they were more liberal-minded would I even be now?

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  10. @Ambivi

    I don’t think you can categorise the abortion issue into left vs right, or labour vs tory. There are plenty of Tories who support killing unborn children, and there are Labour MP’s who don’t support it.

    As it says in the BBC article, it’s a matter of conscience not politics,

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    You don’t need to be “a Tory” to have those opinions.

    ( I am a Conservative supporter for example :-) )

    But if you have had significant interaction with disabled people -or have a disabled child-it does, I think, inform your opinion.

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  12. @Colin,

    “But if you have had significant interaction with disabled people -or have a disabled child-it does, I think, inform your opinion.”

    That’s very true. I have known/met many disabled children and adults and they are some of the happiest/most wonderful people you could ever meet! It has certainly changed my perceptions of disabilities and disabled people.

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  13. @Ambivi

    It’s a small world, I have Dyspraxia and had ADHD, It’s probably why I feel so strongly on the abortion issue, abortion based on disability sends the wrong message. It says that those with disabilities are somehow not worthy of life, or the extra care and attention to look after them, that unless you get the perfect child you will kill it. Sounds scarily like China, where if the child isn’t a boy, or if it’s a boy with a disability, kill it quick so we can have another one and hopefully get the right result. It’s a precursor to Eugenics.

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  14. @ManintheMiddle,

    Dyspraxia and ADHD are strongly linked apparently – so is AS as dyspraxia is on the autistic spectrum. I am often restless (as my family will tell you) and I get obsessive, intense interests and find human interaction (and relationships) difficult. I find people confusing at the best of times!

    I don’t like this idea of creating perfect people. Sounds too much like Nazi Germany to me!

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    @”Not all women are mentally equipped for life with a disabled child.”

    No woman, I venture to suggest ( with good reason to do so) is prepared , or equiped for such a diagnosis .

    The next step in this discussion takes us into such areas as the responsibility of the mother ( notwithstanding the difficulties associated with a disabled child) , the rights of disabled children, the criteria used in defining “quality of life”, and the persons entitled to make them.

    And I am sure you will agree that we should not take that step.

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  16. Ambivalent

    I agree with everything you just said, I have the same symptoms as you getting intense obsesive interests and finding relationships, both friendship and romance difficult.

    I guess some think that means I’m not worthy of life and my parents should have aborted me.

    Also it’s very true that extreme left wing, and extreme right wing are very similar, I mentioned the policy in china, and you mentioned Nazi Germany, both are basically precursors to Eugenics.

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  17. So I looked it up, to see if there has been advances in determining the age of a foetus, since it is becoming so important.

    Well the answer is that it is: No, not really.

    I wondered if science had moved on in this respect; apparently it has not. Age is worked out from the first day of the woman’s last period. So, unless it is an assisted conception, determining the age is pretty much down to the mother keeping accurate records & there being no anomalies which could affect the calculation.

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  18. Well, I think that the fact one child of under 22 weeks has been born (and survived), and that some babies are being born under 24 weeks means that there should at least be a discussion on whether the limit should be changed.

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  19. If my mother had chosen not to have me, I know not who or where I would be. It’d be interesting to know but there’s not much chance of finding out. Imagine if we are all agonising over this & you would actually have been somewhere really great if you were not here!

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    You mean, like, some better Labour Party??

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  21. @ Ambivalent

    Well the clincians will determine it, I expect. I think that reducing it to 12 weeks, as JH wants to do, doesn’t give much time for counselling or considering the decision. But, given current technology, a 12 week deadline pretty much rules out aborting purely because of gender. So that’s something in its favour.

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  22. I genuinely have no idea, why my last post was put in moderation.

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  23. Or, some other Scotland??

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  24. @ John Pilgrim

    You mean, like, some better Labour Party??
    LOL :-) Yes, the conferences might be really, really good there & the party might actually be well to the left of the Tories!

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  25. @Ambivalent Supporter.
    I’m not a Conservative voter, no, and it would take a lot to make me vote Conservative, although technically I’m a floating voter. The only general election I’ve been eligible to vote in, I voted Labour, and I’ve voted various other parties in local and European elections.

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  26. “I am dyspraxic (was diagnosed when I was about 8) and have a bit of AS.”

    Not dyspraxia, but I do have similar symptoms as part of a wider neurological condition, as well as some pretty minor musculoskeletal stuff going on. I don’t have AS, at least not officially, but sometimes I do wonder, your last post sounds quite familiar… I had no idea that dyspraxia was on the autistic spectrum.

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  27. @ John Pilgrim

    Or, some other Scotland??
    I’d quite like it to be the same Scotland but with more holidays & better weather. :-)

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  28. You’ll have to wait until AW gets back and decides it’s acceptable to hear my medical history. :-S

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  29. Amber,

    “If my mother had chosen not to have me, I know not who or where I would be. It’d be interesting to know but there’s not much chance of finding out. Imagine if we are all agonising over this & you would actually have been somewhere really great if you were not here!”

    We have two possibilities as I see it; either we are born or we simply never exist. I’d prefer to be born than never to have existed. I thank my parents for choosing to have me, as the alternative is that I never would have had the chance to experience life!

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  30. @Hannah,

    I’m a floating voter too. I’d consider voting Labour or Conservative – depends on Ed and Cameron and what offer is on the table.

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  31. @Amber
    Am on my way from Vientiane to Yerevan in Armenia in the etermal quest (actually just another job, and I am already entangled with the sodding administration; it doesn’t get any better). But I’ll try going up Mount Ararat to see what old Noah was after.

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  32. I count myself as a floating voter too, although so far I’ve voted Tory twice and that’s it (well 3x if you count london mayor and london assembly as seperate).

    The thing I hate about the party system is that I am very interested into politics and I do have a lower opinion of those who simply couldn’t care less about such an important topic. I would love to be an MP, but I know I never could. I have clear set views, that would make me unwanted by either party. I have right wing views such as supporting Grammar Schools, and wanting to end Foreign Aid, and end public funding for the BBC. So I probably wouldn’t be welcome in Labour. But then I also have very left wing views, I support state recognised gay marriage, I support an increase in minimum wage and general working conditions, I’ve very grateful for the NHS, and I think we should be investing in our future and looking after our environment so probably wouldn’t be welcome in Tory circles either.

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  33. ManintheMiddle – you have just described a set of views that should sit happily on the left of the Tory party, with a couple of bits thrown in from the right. The fact that you think those views wouldn’t fit in the Tory party doesn’t signify much (I spend my life telling you all that the plural of anecdote is not data!), but I suspect it is not an unusual view. There was a fine article by Tim Bale in the Guardian yesterday about the weakness of the Tory left, and the problems that poses for the party in widening their net.

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  34. Anthony

    I’m afraid I can’t agree with you there. “supporting Grammar Schools, and wanting to end Foreign Aid, and end public funding for the BBC.” Are all to the right of the Tory party.

    And I’ve yet to meet the Tory who ” support an increase in the minimum wage and general working conditions,”

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  35. @Hannah,

    “I had no idea that dyspraxia was on the autistic spectrum.”

    They overlap to such an extent that a lot of the symptoms of, say, AS or ADHD often co-exist with dyspraxia.

    I’d say my views are similar in many ways to maninthemiddle, but there are also many differences:-

    1) I support grammar and private schools.
    2) I agree with protecting the foreign aid budget; however, I think it should only go to countries/schemes that really need it.
    3) I support gay marriage and adoption.
    4) I believe that the welfare system should be there as a safety net. It should be cut in areas where it is bloated, and more help and financial support should be given to the elderly and disabled.
    5) I support the NHS.
    6) I support a national minimum wage but think it is not currently enough.
    7) I support big business and/or banks as long as they behave responsibly. Business taxes should be low, but everything should be done to make businesses pay their taxes.
    8) I support low taxes for the rich and poor (alike).
    9) I am personally anti-abortion but I respect other people’s lifestyle choices and decisions.
    10) I believe in equality.
    11) I am generally a free market thinker, but I think basic regulations and policies should be put in place to prevent the worse excesses of capitalism.

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  36. Also the left of the Tory party is seen as Pro-European.

    I’m really unsure on my stance on Europe. I like the idea of a Federal Europe in Principle. But it won’t really work as long as the Europeans have this deep-rooted hatred of us, and this desire to hammer the UK. ie Financial transactions tax, but again am grateful for so much that the EU has done, ie working time directive, food standards, (they have banned high fructose corn syrup.)

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  37. I agree with everything you said apart from the Foreign Aid budget. I think as long as we have UK citizens homeless or hungry and the crime of child poverty we should focus our money on helping those our own people, then when we eliminate homelessness, hunger and child poverty in our own backyard, then we can maybe look to helping others.

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  38. ManintheMiddle – yes, I amended my post but it gets cached so takes a bit to show up. BBC would certainly be the sort of thing that only shows up on the right of the party. Grammar schools wouls be popular amongst Tories of many hues.

    Your latter point is the same as Tim Bale’s – the Tory left that would be perfectly happy talking about raising working conditions has faded away or gone quiet. The old Tory left was indeed mostly pro-European – but supporting the principle of a federal Europe would certainly be very pro-European by Tory standards (though not unknown – think Ted Heath)

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  39. Thanks for the reference to that Tim Bale article Anthony-most interesting.

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  40. MitM
    It depends on the aid, and on the extent to which it is aid and trade and affects market structures and flows, which I agree should benefit our economy, and for which there are good tested examples: e.g. the Bretton Woods institutions by and large, which, to take the example of Cambodia which I know, have transformed the roads system in the space of a decade. WTO, ILO and the leisure-wear industry have provided huge benefits to rural families there and in Bangladesh through the regulated development of the garments industry, giving the West cheap, high quality clothing, and them a pathway out of poverty; ditto for fair trade coffee in Vietnam and Laos. But the same institutions have, through inadequate research and the soft-headedness and inadequacy of feather-bedded management, and tolerance of corruption, alllowed what are basically a repetition of our own land clearances to hand small farmer food production lands to the maw of industrial commodity producers, and permitted hydropower systems to threaten fish stocks and comsumption throughout the Mekong and other great river basins. Time for culling and reform, and for a new breed of internationalism in technical exchange and the markets, and in regulatory systems, but not for withdrawal.

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  41. OLD NAT
    I hope you weren’t put off – by some idiot’s comment about Scottish hogging of the air waves – from your generous exchanges with Amber on Scots politics of the left. For me they were as good as Rebus – a welcome voice from the political heartland. I sense a definite threat to freedom, dangerously close to Gray’s and others doubts on personal identity as other than a myth, in any lessening of your wise and cynical old voice, or of her feisty interjections, in this lovely blog.

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