This morning’s YouGov poll for the Sun has topline figures of CON 31%, LAB 43%, LDEM 9%, UKIP 11%. The poll suggests an increase in UKIP support on the back of the EU summit, the child fostering row and the coverage of Michael Fabricant’s calls for a Con-UKIP pact. YouGov has occassionally shown UKIP ahead of the Lib Dems in the past, but their support in YouGov polls over the last month has typically been at around 7% or 8%. 11% is the highest they have shown them to date.

On the subject of the UKIP fostering row, YouGov also asked some more detailed questions about fostering children. 50% of respondents thought that people with extreme political views should not usually (32%), or never (18%) be allowed to foster children.

However, this was clearly not thought to apply to UKIP. Asked if people who were members of several named political parties should be allowed to foster children only 4% of people thought that UKIP members shouldn’t be able to foster (55% said there was nothing wrong at all with it, 27% said they disliked UKIP’s views but it shouldn’t be a block to their members fostering children). Figures were very similar for the Respect party, with 4% saying a Respect party member should not be allowed to foster children.

In comparison 36% of people said that members of the BNP should not be allowed to foster children (and only 18% said there was nothing wrong with a BNP member being a foster parent). As a control YouGov asked about the three main parties too – the Conservatives, Labour, Liberal Democrats. Only 1% of people said that their party members should not be able to foster children.

Yesterday we also had the weekly TNS BMRB poll. Topline figures are CON 31% (nc), LAB 41% (+2), LDEM 8%(-3), UKIP 8%(+1), OTHER 10%(-1).

Finally I’ve been meaning to write something about Leveson and polling on press regulation for a week or so, but have been distracted by gay marriage, UKIP and so on. Luckily Peter Kellner has done it for me here.


435 Responses to “YouGov/Sun – CON 31, LAB 43, LD 9, UKIP 11”

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  1. Much as I hate much of the press, I think this is a knotty one, and that conumdrum is reflected in the confused polling.

    If we are going to excuse some criminality in the name of public interest, we are going to have to define the public interest. And I expect Murdoch and Dacre would have vastly different opinions about it to me.

    And how can we stop newspaper groups identifying and attempting to destroy enemies both political and just because they have slighted them in some way?

    And is the sex life of footballers anybody’s business but their own?

  2. But why on earth do 3% of Lib Dem voters think that 3% of Lib Dem party members should not be allowed to foster children?

    Are they concerned that the kids will be exploited as child labour, losing their childhood to an endless routine of stuffing leaflets through letterboxes?

  3. CORRECTION

    But why on earth do 3% of Lib Dem voters think that Lib Dem party members should not be allowed to foster children?

    Are they concerned that the kids will be exploited as child labour, losing their childhood to an endless routine of stuffing leaflets through letterboxes?

  4. Phil – Lib Dems were also most likely to think that Con and Lab members shouldn’t foster. I suspect there were a handful of people in the sample who thought that *anyone* weird enough to join a political party was not a suitable foster parent.

  5. One interesting crossbreak on this one – the Lab-Con gender gap is +13 for men, +11 for women.

    On a related issue of interest to this site, what credence should one give to Mark Seddon’s article in the Graun (http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/nov/28/boundary-changes-devo-max-deal) that suggests a Con-SNP deal of devo max in return for voting through DC’s boundary changes? My personal sense is that it has the hallmarks of accuracy … it might be technically and legally feasible to pass a bill by commanding a simple majority of HoC votes, but such a deal would fail the stink test by a country mile.

  6. Phil
    LD child labour :-) :-)

  7. “In comparison 36% of people said that members of the BNP should not be allowed to foster children (and only 18% said there was nothing wrong with a BNP member being a foster parent)”
    __________

    I’m very surprised at this but again it depends on the question. Had they included “children born outside the UK” which of course was the main issue around the UKIP fiasco then I would expect and hope the percentage would be closer to 80% with regards to a BNP member being a foster parent.

    It’s not wrong to have concerns over immigration but to discriminate against people because of race is pure vile and I’m sorry but that’s exactly what the BNP are…vile!!

  8. Tark – check the only named source “former MEP John Stevens”. That’s John Stevens who left the Conservatives over a decade ago, founded his own Pro-European Conservative party, then joined the Liberal Democrats, then stood as an Independent against John Bercow.

    I don’t imagine he is part of Cameron’s inner circle, so while the dogs in the street know Cameron would like to get the boundaries through and would like the SNP, DUP, etc to vote for them, it suggests the details are mere speculation.

  9. Phil that made me laugh: I didn’t lose my childhood but I DID spend a great many years of leaflet stuffing for Dad and the Lib Dems… I don;t vote that way mind. Saying that neither does he now!

  10. Encouraged by public opinion on Press regulation, as summarised by PK.

    A template for DC there, which I hope he follows.

  11. @Colin FPT

    You said “…So that those of us who take an interest in EU matters, but do not have a “purview” in respect of it ,may place your advice in some sort of context, could you explain the exact nature of your EU “purview” please….”

    It does seem like I have to give my CV every three weeks on this site. So here we go again… :-)

    I’m a statistician by training (although my job title varies) so my “purview” varies from job to job. Specialist areas in the past include battlefield statistics, demography, epidemiology and the statistical analysis of very large data sets in both the public and private sectors. My current area is flood data in the UK, which is timely if nothing else. One recurring bugbear is the lack of stable country subdivisions, which make longitudinal study difficult. About three/four years I did a write-up on pan-European political structures, including the European Parliament and the (little-known) Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly. This meant I had a good working knowledge of the EU and CoE at the time.

    Since my interests include subdivisions, statistics and politics, I am a natural habitue of this site, especially for those contributors (Statgeek, Virgilio, Amber, Roger Mexico, Oldnat, SoCalLib, et al…) who give such good data. Since my job description is to provide expert analysis[1] whenever somebody offers a statement of fact that is untrue, I pounce and go “A-ha!”.[2] Since the most discussed and most misunderstood subject on this site is the EU, I tend to spend most of my time on here talking about the EU, although it *was* nice the other day when we started tallking about Japanese demography.[3] My EU knowledge is increasingly out-of-date (so I was caught out on Commission President election procedure, since it’s changing) so there are some questions I can’t answer, but if we are talking about questions of fact (I think) I know about, then I’ll jump in[2].

    If you think I work (or have worked) for the EU or an associated body, or a thinktank, I don’t and haven’t. It’s unlikely I ever will – the nearest I would get is Eurostat, but given my lack of languages and academic publication, I doubt I’d get it and I’m not planning on applying. I suppose I could try for a thinktank,[4] but given my recent jobchange I’m not planning on another move until 2014.

    rgdsm

    [1] or “instant a**hole” as I like to think of it
    [2] like I said: “instant a**hole”
    [3] and killer robots
    [4] although it would be difficult to do so with a straight face for some of them.

  12. @Anthony W

    Has anybody done any research into the demographics of UKIP support?. My purely anecdotal hunch is that they’re mainly male, white, middle aged and, as typified by Farage, look as if they might Treasurers of their local Rotary Club, but is there any analytical support to back this up?

    I understand the politics of UKIP’s voters, and the parties that they may have supported in the past and could in the future,, but I’m intrigued to know what the demography is telling us about who they might typically be.

  13. I didn’t think statisticians and thinktanks could co-exist. One deals in ideas, while the other explains why their ideas are flawed. :)

  14. @CB11

    One thing I have noticed is that UKIP data is more lacking. Possibly because they don’t get the coverage of other parties.

    I found one point in this article interesting:

    http://liberalconspiracy.org/2012/11/25/does-labour-have-anything-to-fear-from-ukip-in-rotheram/

    “One possibility behind the curious decision is that social workers may have been guilty of confusing UKIP with the BNP. Maybe they had seen the ComRes poll last week which showed around 12% of UKIP supporters would seriously consider voting BNP at the next election. (5% of Labour supporters would do the same.)”

    If we take those numbers apart and apply the latest MAD V I to them (with turnout being the same as 2010):

    Labour 43.0%
    UKIP 7.8%

    5% of the 43% of the 2010 turnout – 638,365 voters
    12% of the 7.8% of the 2010 turnout – 277,911 voters

    Conclusion:

    Headlines are to be ignored until the data is released. Of 900,000 votes in this example, 70% would be Labour voters. Also bear in mind that the data I used is not valid. It is speculative and estimated.

  15. Although a small percentage, I still find it disturbing that some people in this country think political belief should prevent fostering, it’s all a bit draconian a la restriction of free association.

    The UKIP number appears to be seing a real jump. Especially if London and Scotland are considered since today’s poll is showing lower support than usually it has shown in those regions in recent weeks. The 15 % in the North shows that the fosterng row has perhaps launched UKIP onto the path ofi beoming potential 2nd challenger in most Labour areas?

  16. What I don’t understand is despite these polls why is Ukip still being given the backward fourth place on all listings despite that most polls put them ahead of the Liberal Democrats. Even the polling average bar on the left of this website has no mention of Ukip but Lib Dems are still seen in this sense as the ‘third’ party. Is this fair?

  17. Cameron is seeking cross-party consensus on Leveson, which is refreshing, assuming it’s genuine.

    One way of taking the wind out of his backbenchers’ sails…but might add to their disgruntlement.

    Obviously the PCC will be replaced with something…but what? And what legal framework?

    I wonder myself whether the real problem is that laws relating to lobbyists including the Press are what need looking at. The real stench was the link between NI, the Met and government. Tapping celebrity phones is illegal anyway, but it was the cover-up by the police (and the reasons behind that) that led to Leveson.

    So I’m not sure that the new body to oversee press behaviour will be the most interesting part of the report…if the report covers these other things too (?)

    is this the full Leveson or is there a further look at that question of influence with government and cross-pollination with the police?

  18. MARTYN

    I wasn’t asking for your CV-merely the nature of te “purview” you said you had with regard to the EU

    …so @”. About three/four years I did a write-up on pan-European political structures, including the European Parliament and the (little-known) Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly. This meant I had a good working knowledge of the EU and CoE at the time.”

    Explains that-thank you.

    ……….and @”If you think I work (or have worked) for the EU or an associated body, or a thinktank, I don’t and haven’t” is relevant too-so thanks for that.

  19. CB11

    I suspect Blazers & striped ties are a feature somewhere in the data.

  20. NICKP

    @”Tapping celebrity phones is illegal anyway, but it was the cover-up by the police (and the reasons behind that) that led to Leveson.”

    …phones of any person I think-not just “celebrities”.

    Yes-it is what has been so frustrating about this. If existing laws had been used & the police had been doing “our” job , rather than the media’s , then we would have had an informed view of the status quo.

    As it is the status quo has been terribly corrupted.

    I think Peter Kellner’s distillation of the OP is on the button. THose five tests will get us close to something sensible.

    We do not want MPs muzzling the Press. We cannot trust MPs to be objective when their own conduct is involved.

    We want the Police at arms length from the Press, and ready to use the law against it.

    We want redress for those abused by the Press to be available quickly & cheaply to those who suffer from a breach of law by the Press.

  21. I wonder if Leveson will pick up the warning which RP made in his presence, about the future faced by the dead tree press?

    RP pointed clearly to the shift to the internet, with material available on static & mobile devices.

    For those of us who still value in depth analysis & comment on newsprint, RP’s vision of the future is utterly depressing.
    We have only just experienced the horrors of the Blogosphere in full cry.

    That we would have to sift through stuff like that to get at reliable comment & analysis somewhere in cyberspace is not a healthy prospect for any decent society.

    DC needs to beware of this-even if it has eluded Leveson, because a Press which chooses to walk away from what it sees as draconian legislation inimical to free speech ; to a new location in unregulated cyberspace would be a terrible consequence of the the wrong balance .

  22. @AW – thanks. Blood pressure back to normal now :)

  23. RP=RM

    Doh :-)

  24. @Colin

    For “…About three/four years I did a write-up…”, please read “…About three/four years ago I did a write-up…”.The write-up did not take me three/four years… :-)

    @Statgeek

    I did some work for a client once where he was convinced “validating data” meant “proving it was correct”. It took forever to convince him it meant “finding the mistakes so you can remove them”

    rgdsm

  25. @Colin

    For further avoidance of doubt, I don’t have a “purview with regards to the EU” per se. My purview is the set of subjects which I know stuff and can bang on about without making (too much of) a fool of myself. The EU is nowhere near the biggest in that set and is increasingly out-of-date.

    rgdsm

  26. MARTYN

    Had you explained that previously rather than saying :-

    ” Many points made about the EU and the alternatives are either factually true or false, and so fall within my purview. ”

    I would not have troubled you.

  27. @Colin

    Thank you.

    rgdsm

  28. Just wait till the next European Elections and then see the UKIP GE voting intention get dragged upwards.

    a semi-minor party like UKIP will always benefit from publicity and/or the inherent value of their main issue (or percieved main issue) namely Europe being in the news recently. DC not repeating his veto probably helped them too, although that probably helped everyone else a little too. Well, DC can’t veto everything can he? It could even be that there will be no more vetoes, for various reasons.

    On Leveson I think it will have to be a case of being seen to do something without really doing that much. It’s a tricky problem to stop bad journalism without interfering with the good. And I get the problem of all of the news migrating out of reach into cyberspace. Another kind of globalisation there.

  29. Pardon the threadjack, but have you got anything on the by elections? I wasn’t paying them much attention until I read that Respect are going to win them both, apparently, probably, almost certainly, according to Respect.

    In polling conducted at the weekend, the Respect candidate in the Rotherham by-election, Yvonne Ridley, has the lead over Labour. … Polling conducted in the Croydon North by-election suggests that Lee Jasper, the Respect candidate, is now neck and neck with the Labour Party to win the constituency.

    Which would be interesting.

  30. Crossbat – have a google for a paper by Rob Ford on UKIP support at the 2009 European election, that’s the best analysis of where their support comes from (obviously the people who support them at general elections are probably different to those who support them at European elections, but I’m not aware of anything as good as Rob’s work but for Westminster elections)

  31. I think the YouGov survey missed the point entirely. The key question is whether someone that is opposed to multiculturalism should be fostering children of another culture. Here’s the killer phrase from the UKIP 2010 manifesto:

    “End the active promotion of the doctrine of multiculturalism by local and national government and all publicly funded bodies”

    It seems to me there’s plenty of scope for conflict between parents believing that and their adopted children trying to discover or express their cultural identity. There’s certainly a case to answer.

    But unfortunately the YouGov survey doesn’t mention the cultural identity of the children, so it does not give us any insight into what people might think about the specific case.

  32. I could certainly see that bringing up a great deal of concern. What we don’t know is if the couple were allowing their foster children contact with their heritage?

    Remember, it’s not that long ago that Jewish and Muslim and Catholic kids would have *very* bad times when fostered with those who were intent on converting them to Anglicanism…

  33. Phil –

    No, there is no proper polling on them. Respect will be presenting their canvassing as if it was a poll, which is obvious bull (or alternatively, they’ve found some voodoo poll on a website, in which case it is also bull)

  34. Anthony W

    Many thanks. I’ll have a look at the Rob Ford paper that you recommend.

  35. @Statgeek

    My spreadsheet’s uploaded now –

    http://www.freefilehosting.net/electionresults

    There might be the odd item in there that you haven’t already got.

  36. Anthony

    ” Phil – Lib Dems were also most likely to think that Con and Lab members shouldn’t foster. I suspect there were a handful of people in the sample who thought that *anyone* weird enough to join a political party was not a suitable foster parent.”

    I’ve looked through the tables and there was nothing surprising about the lib dem sample, I would expect lib dems to be nervous about foster parents with strong views be they political or religious. I would say its part of the liberal ethos that we shouldn’t unduly influence our children in any particular direction but encourage them to think for themselves, I know that with my own children I always try to argue both sides of the debate, I’m very worried about indoctrinating them. I notice also that libdems were more accepting of gay foster parents etc. It doesn’t matter who you are but how you are, I think is the liberal ethos

  37. @Hal

    Depends what the culture is. The tie can’t be very strong as their country of origin has washed its hands of them. Many Eastern European countries actively encourage unwanted minorities to come to the UK where they can claim benefits.The Russian TV channel RT ran a story on this saying that Latvia and Lithuania were telling their unemployed Russian minority to go to the UK.

  38. Serves me right for choosing such an obvious name, but the “Phil” at 10.53 (and on the previous thread) was me but the “Phil” at 3.31 wasn’t.

    So, as there’s no option but to follow in the footsteps of an earlier serial namechanger on this site, “Phil Haines” it is henceforth.

  39. @Wolf

    I’m not entirely sure cultural heritage works the way you seem to think it does.

    Nor should you pay 100% credence to RT when they are talking about former parts of the Soviet Bloc.

  40. Wolf

    The people in Latvia don’t need telling to get out, when they have been through the appalling internal devaluation they have. I can’t remember the the figures but I think they have lost 15%+ of their population, of course mostly young bright folk. I know we have loads here, all of them working hard and sending money home. The Portuguese and Greeks have started turning up here as well, again looking to find work and send money home. I’m a really bad migrant I almost never send money home. I guess the Greeks will be turning up in Britain soon looking to sign on and not send money home!!

  41. AW – I am disgusted that you have accused the Respect poll as being “bull”.

    I have it on good authority that the poll asked 500 people their voting intentions in both bye-elections…..the fact that the 500 people asked were all Respect members is just a coincidence ;-)

  42. “In polling conducted at the weekend, the Respect candidate in the Rotherham by-election, Yvonne Ridley, has the lead over Labour. ”

    Would it be worth Labour doing a ‘vote UKIP get Respect” leaflet to undecided voters? :-)

  43. Shevii – The Labour candidate instead could do a leaflet “Vote Lib Dem Get a Conservative”….oh wait there, I have just had a sense of de ja vu :-)

  44. On topic, the poll does show how heavily it is weighted towards ” Rest of South”.

    The splits are:

    London 17% Labour lead
    Rest of South 6% Conservative lead
    Midlands/Wales 20% Labour lead
    The North 25 % Labour lead
    Scotland 18% Labour lead

    Gives a 12% Labour lead.

  45. HAL

    I think you are missing a pretty big point.

    No assessment was made of the families views on this. Just a “oh they are UKIP therefore they must be racist so we’ll take the kids away without any further investigation”

    If you believe that to be a member of a political party to have to agree to everything in a party’s manifesto I suggest you are wrong.

    From what I heard about the case the parents said they joined UKIP because of it’s stance on leaving the EU. The fact that with no real investigation the council proclaimed these people “racist and only fit to foster white children” should give serious worry about this councils ability to use judgement.

  46. @Hal – “UKIP 2010 manifesto… ”

    National Minimum Standards for Fostering Services states:

    “foster carers provide care which respects and preserves each child’s ethnic, religious and linguistic background”

    Joyce Thacker: “The children have been in care proceedings before and the judge had previously criticised us for not looking after the children’s cultural and ethnic needs, and we have had to really take that into consideration with the placement that they were in.”

    At first Gove said the decision was “indefensible”, he later said that there may be a need to change legislation. Cameron has given high profile speeches (Feb 2008, and Feb 2011 in Munich) attacking ‘state multiculturalism’, so it will be interesting to see where the Tory party goes with this.

  47. @ Colin (from the previous thread)

    “Is it just me -or do the last two posts from Socal read as particularly aggressive & unpleasant rants , dripping with hatred for “others”?”

    Well I’m not sure which comments you were reffering to specifically (I had three, not two). But as to the commentary about European conservatives, you are right. I was overgeneralizing and being way too aggressive and unpleasant (though I wouldn’t say dripping with hatred for others). And I’m sorry for that. So I apologize.

    On the other comment, reffering to Clinton and childhood days, that was a half serious comment about what it’s like to come of age, have a political sense, and watch as events unfold around you. There’s a certain irony to that. And my reference to the Logical Song was obviously a joke, I know how much some here love music references.

  48. @ALAN

    I thought the children were white…
    “not indigenous white British”
    Which I suspect means white European hence the problem with UKIP

    And no I am waiting like most other people for the full story before making any criticism of the social workers concerned, it is the social workers who made the decision remove the children… but again I am surmising… because until a report is done we just do not know… do we?

  49. TOJIM

    I’m presuming that Rotherham council leaders already have a report from Social Work – they’re incompetent if they don’t.

    I also presume that these politicians will sit on it until Friday – they’re incompetent if they don’t.

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