This morning’s YouGov poll for the Sun has topline figures of CON 32%, LAB 44%, LDEM 9%, UKIP 10%. I think we can now be pretty confident that the underlying Labour lead in YouGov’s daily polling has ticked up to twelve points or so, mostly it seems from a drop in Conservative support and increase in UKIP support – Labour’s own support remains pretty much unchanged.

The main driver of change here was presumably the positive publicity UKIP got from their strong performance in the recent by-elections, the Rotherham fostering row and the talk of a Conservative-UKIP row, an excellent week of news coverage for UKIP. Whether it will be sustained or will fade away again as the news agenda rolls on is a different matter.

(As a reminder, the vast majority of the fieldwork for this poll was completed before the Autumn statement. Tomorrow morning’s poll will be the first one conducted after the statement, though personally I wouldn’t expect any huge impact.)

144 Responses to “YouGov/Sun – CON 32, LAB 44, LD 9, UKIP 10”

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  1. @ Frank Little

    Yeah, you have a point there…oh wait, no you don’t, the UKIP and BNP results in Rotherham from 2010 to the by-election are in no way whatsoever related. UKIP went up 2400, BNP went down 2100, so I supposed you could say they are kind of similar, but that ignores the 5,500 LibDem votes, the 5,100 Conservatives votes, and the 6,900 Labour votes that disappeared. So you are just making arbitrary assumptions to relate things.

  2. Al:

    Sweet: ta very much and I’m glad you’ve admitted it at last

  3. @OldNat

    Both No.10 and the Lords have both received the same response. A newly created state claiming independence from an EU member state would not inherit EU membership. That is the answer the EU Commision has given to the general question.

    Explain now why Scotland is an exception, particularly when the “general answer” was given specifically to those who wanted to know about Scotland.

    I know you chose to say it is “obvious” Scotland will remain an EU member, but you do understand that it behoves you to provide some evidence to support that when there is existing evidence against it. You are entitled to your opinion on the matter, but not to claim your opinion is indisputable.

  4. ANDYO

    Me too-it’s the Wealden Woods which do it for me.

  5. I also note the following… Spain has reason to lodge a veto against Scotland being granted any kind of ‘inherited’ automatic entry, or even fast track entry, and may well veto entry all together, because of their own issues with Catalonia. I do not understand how you can claim that Scotland will “automatically” be part of the EU, when any EU country can veto the accession of a new state.

  6. “If you have a non-partisan view, one of the benefits is that you get to debate both sides of the coin and hence explore the different viewpoints.”
    I don’t think the problem is necessarily partisanship but blind ideology.
    And even trying to be non-ideological is impossible, you’re just fooling yourself further.
    The best thing to try is to be aware of your own ideological biases and try to understand the biases on the other side.

    I’m very aware of my far-left biases – so I understand why people struggle to understand my policy views.

    “What I find is that economic debates are coloured by disagreement over fundamentals such as,,”
    I think it’s much more simple – the ‘fundamentals’ of economics are just expansions on simpler ideologies.
    So the idea that redistribution leads necessarily to laziness is just opposition to redistribution as a core idea and the ‘laziness’ is simply justification.
    Or that privatising services (but publicly subsidising them) is always bad because it’s an anti-capitalist bias with a ‘less efficient’ bias – the opposite is true, a pro-capitalist bias will lead to ‘privatised services are always better’ justification.

    “I don’t think the left are for more spending per se, nor the right always for less.”
    I agree, but overall ‘left-wing’ policies require more state spending whereas ‘right-wing’ policies require less so it’s always framed in ‘big state’ vs ‘small state’.
    The better set of questions (which is why it gets silly when you have ‘optimal % of GDP’ figures) is ‘What do I want the state to do?’ followed by ‘How much does that cost?’ and finally, ‘Is that level of spending feasible?’
    Everything else is just bunk.

  7. “a ‘less efficient’ bias ”
    Should read “a ‘less efficient’ justification”

  8. Jay

    But Scotland will not be a newly created state, it has always been a separate state as evidenced by having its own international football team, its own law and its own education system. On the other hand if a part of Germany voted for independence that would be a different matter seeing as Germany only has one football team

  9. Also I should point out that I’m being a little bit too broad – most people are poly-ideological and will apply different ideologies to different contexts.
    So most people in the UK (I have no polling, so I’m going by what I believe the case to be) would use a capitalist model (i.e free-trade) for the distribution of consumer goods but a communist [1] model (i.e each according to his need) for the provision of healthcare.

    [1] Although nobody would call it communist – not even the far-left like to claim the NHS health distribution model that way.

  10. Jay

    If England voted to be independent from rUK do you believe that England would have to reapply to the EU and rUK would automatically remain in the EU?

  11. @carfrew

    Be interesting to have a Top 100 best UK Government investment decisions and Top 100 UK Government worst decisions.

  12. Jay,

    “Spain has reason to lodge a veto against Scotland being granted any kind of ‘inherited’ automatic entry, or even fast track entry, and may well veto entry all together, because of their own issues with Catalonia.”

    that’s the same Spain that needs everyone else in the Eurozone to bail it out.

    I fully expect almost everyone in the EU to back fast track entry so that there is the smoothest possible transfer in 2016 so doing all the negotiations and agreements in the two years before makes sense.

    It isn’t in the UK’s interest to have financial disruption in 2014-16, thats the last thing we need. It isn’t in the EU’s interest to have unnecessary disruption in two years time while it is working on the Eurozone crisis, especially as Scotland will probably be a net contributor.

    It isn’t in Spain’s interest to get in a fight with the rest of the EU when it needs help with it’s economy and debts.

    As ever with this it is about creating doubt and uncertainty to deter people from change. Politicians do it all the time and fear tends to work, just look at the last six months in the US.

    Me I make a distinction between possibility and probability;

    Is it possible that Spain will try to block Scotland’s entry?


    Is it likely that Spain will try to or if it tries succeed?


    The better together campaign will try to talk up the dangers as will the Herald and Scotsman because both are against Independence, but it will take more than that to convince me that a smooth transition between 2014-16 is not overwhelmingly what is in everyones long term interest.

    As I’ve said before, we are in the “Phoney War”

    What people say they might do or might do come Independence is designed to influence the vote and bares no resemblance to what they will do and what will happen.


  13. Richard,

    That raises an odd issue;

    An EU member has the right to leave the EU, but does an EU member have the right to remove part of it’s territory, in effect part of the EU with EU citizens living there from the EU???



  14. @ Richard in Norway

    “Just cos I like horrible charts”

    It’s a horrible situation over there. On the other hand though, I wish that it would stop being used as an example for why the United States needs to unneccessarily create self-inflicted wounds for its economy.

    @ Tinged Fringe

    “UKIP and Republicans both favour lower spending.. except military spending and any other conservative ‘pet projects’, even when it’s a higher % of GDP than any comparable western country.”

    Perhaps UKIP does but the GOP really doesn’t. Romney’s plans would have increased spending. The current plans of their Congressional Caucus seemingly increase spending as well. Most GOP plans (at the state and local level) for cutting spending seem to be little more than union busting plans that actually cost the government more in the long run. For example, before he abandoned it, the former Republican Mayor of LA had a big “cost saving” plan that includeds cutting union pensions. But in fact, studies by neutral observers showed that it would ultimately cost the city more. Do keep in mind too that when the GOP took complete power in 2001, there was a budget surplus. By the time Obama took over in 2009, there was a record deficit. The deficit of late has been declining more rapidly at any point since World War II. So they may claim to favor less spending but they haven’t exactly lived by that.

    Of course now we deal with the fact that the current mayor, who is a liberal, is joining this fakakta “Fix the Debt” coalition where he suggests cuts to Social Security and Medicare benefits. I don’t know why he’s doing it. Retired GOP Senator Alan Simpson believes that young Americans will support giving up their longterm Social Security and Medicare if he dances Gangnam style.

  15. @RiN
    I realise you’re saying that tongue in cheek, but I should take the opportunity to explain something. The EU commission position on this is pretty clear and the reasoning is simple…

    * Only Sovereign States can sign treaties.
    * EU membership is by Sovereign State grants by accession to a treaty.
    * Such accession is indivisible, administrative regions, principalities and individual countries of a union are not EU members; only the Sovereign State is an EU member.
    * So if a state divides it’s self with one part declaring independence of the other, the membership of the EU can not be divided between them.
    * If one and only one state can be identified as the successor state, then it retains the EU membership as inheritor of the treaty accession.
    * The non-successor state created by the division has no treaty with the EU, so it is not an EU member state.

    Therefore, to retain that EU treaty accession, Scotland would have to argue that it was the sole successor to the UK’s EU membership. That isn’t going to happen. And so Scotland will have no EU treaty accession, and not be an EU member state.

    Now, there may be other reasoning you can use to say Scotland should keep it’s EU accession… But that’s not the one the EU are using. And we know why the EU are using that, because Spain don’t want to set an precedent in benefit of independence movements.

  16. And yes, by that logic, if England declared independence of the UK, it too would exit the EU.

  17. Social,

    I expect that, like the Republicans, UKIP want more defence spending, lower taxes and a smaller state.

    In reality, as in the US, be it Romney or Reagan the end result with be higher spending, a bigger deficit and a belief that what they had done wasn’t their fault.



    “I know you chose to say it is “obvious” Scotland will remain an EU member”.

    I’m not aware of ever having said that. My position has always been that it the decision as to how to deal with the dissolution of an existing member state will be a political decision at the point that such a situation happens.

    You have already demonstrated a lack of understanding by quoting a Scotsman article as settling the issue.

    Please don’t make your position even more untenable by attributing to other posters positions that they don’t hold.

  19. Jay,

    All well and good but you seem to be repeating yourself and not addressing the point. From now to 2014 it will remain the same.

    If we vote Yes between 2014 and 2016 we have tandem negotiations with the UK and EU and it’s a seamless transition between the two.

    All those who don’t want Independence are trying to make it appear torturous and fraught with danger right up until the vote. That is why they are happy to keep it ambiguous and keep asking the SNP questions.

    But that position will automatically reverse the minute that a Yes vote was announced.


  20. Socal

    I think that graph is a warning of what happens when you try to avoid being Greece by doing exactly the same austerity cuts as Greece.

  21. Funny – unexpectedly I have to teach about the EU from February. I checked it, even talked to people in the Commission. The result is: no, you can’t leave the EU, there’s no mechanism for that. It would probably require rewriting the entire British statue law.

  22. Question Time just starting, I wonder what left wing socialist the BBC have got on this week!

    Not much happening on the polls, seems to have settled to an 8-10% lead for Labour at the moment.

  23. Seems I missed something on the last thread. TOH found an article that was making the same point that I’ve been hammering on about for ages, namely that total debt has been rising faster than GDP, nice to see that someone has been paying attention, just a shame that his graphs started in 97 and not in 77 or better yet in 67, because then you would have seen how it all really kicked off in 77 which coincidentally was when we started with the monetist/neo liberal experiment.

  24. ^ can’t agree with that at all Richard. We have had actual years of surplus in the period you are claiming, namely around end of 80s and around 2000.

    I have a degree in Business Studies & Economics, and I have long since come to the conclusion that neo-liberal economics is far better than the dreadful Keynesian model that in my view helped bankrupt Europe. neo-liberal if done well creates an economy that allows for aspiration. Of Course Brown & Balls are big fans of Keynesian…

  25. RICH O

    “I have a degree in …..” must be one of the least persuasive arguments ever!

  26. Richie

    He’s talking about TOTAL national debt, not just Govt debt.

  27. RichO even

    Bloody iPhone

  28. ^ haha. I do agree with you.

    I remember the argument around student tuition fees, and thought back to my experience at Uni. Not that I want to pull the ladder up, but I lived with a few students in my last year who were doing media studies. They did about 7 hours of lessons per week, and one of them actually did his dissertation on Blade Runner, and he literally watched the film around 50 times. Is this a good way to spend tax payers money?, looking back I have a few doubts now I must say.

  29. @ Rich O

    I don’t think you know what your sentences mean. Unfortunately your meaningless words about economic theories? economic policies? couldn’t hide your pure gut-feeling-led partizan point.

  30. @Laszlo,

    not partisan at all, I have studied neo liberal vs keynesian at significant length, all be it some time ago. its also only my view, you may have a different view, which is absolutely fine. I happen to think, and its backed up by a lot of economic data, that keynesian economics helped significantly exacerbate the current crisis in the Euro Zone by piling on huge borrowing on top of borrowing, which most of the Euro countries trying it had to eventually give up on.

  31. Rich o

    We haven’t had any keynesism since the 70s, you can’t have keynesism without credit controls and capital controls and a a keynesian policy framework. We have had some cherry picking of and barstardisation of Keynes (QE is keynesian?! Poor soul must be turning in his grave) but of course its doomed to fail if its applied in a neoliberal framework

  32. Rich O
    8-10 may have been true before the UKIP and LD growth but that lead may now be widening.
    Which shows why judging things purely on lead may not be the greatest measure.

    When the Cons were much further ahead in 2009 in terms of lead, they generally weren’t much higher than Lab VI is now. And the same pattern may happen again if support for the Cons drops but it doesn’t go to Lab.

  33. AW: “I think we can now be pretty confident that the underlying Labour lead in YouGov’s daily polling has ticked up to twelve points or so…”

    Rich O: “Not much happening on the polls, seems to have settled to an 8-10% lead for Labour at the moment.”

    Nice spin!

  34. I am saying no more and going to bed! like so many online forums and blogs, if you are slightly centre right in your thinking and beliefs, then you are a partisan troll. If you are far left and pro socialist, then you can say whatever you want, and just about everything that is wrong in your life can be traced back to Thatcher!
    @richard in norway, that is a fair point, as I suppose pure Keynesian does require a significant surplus in the boom (can this ever happen now?), but still many of these Govts claimed to be implementing Keynesian. and for what its worth I visited Norway last year, in the QM2. Beautiful country.

  35. RICH O

    “I am saying no more and going to bed!”

    Very wise. I do hope that no one there will ask you awkward questions that you find difficult.

  36. Link to IFS analysis of the true impact of the Autumn Statement is here:

    Utterly regressive, each of the 4 deciles in the bottom 40% of incomes being hit harder than any others, with the bottom 20% hit hardest of all.

    “We’re all in it together”. Discuss.

  37. @OLIVER

    ‘oh wait, no you don’t, the UKIP and BNP results in Rotherham from 2010 to the by-election are in no way whatsoever related.’

    So you must have gone round Rotherham and talked to every single person who voted UKIP? Otherwise how else could you claim the two results are unrelated.

    ‘but that ignores the 5,500 LibDem votes, the 5,100 Conservatives votes, and the 6,900 Labour votes that disappeared. So you are just making arbitrary assumptions to relate things.’

    The above losses were not translated into UKIP gains were they?

    At most UKIP gained very little from any party, considering all the events in Rotherham i.e. the previous Labour MP being exposed as a cheat, a Labour candidate imposed on the local Labour party and a well timed release about the foster parents issue would have led me to believe that UKIP should have done much better than 2400 more votes than they got in 2010.

    That was the main point I was making, 2400 extra votes is hardly indicative of a ‘strong performance’.

  38. Ah! It’s a EU discussion.

    Sticks head thru door, sees it’s about Scotland in the EU post-independence.

    Tiptoes away quietly, hopes nobody notices… :-)


  39. MARTYN

    Feel free to come back. It was just someone thinking that the Scotsman had some credibility, and then digging increasingly deeper holes.

    The conversation has now returned to the sanity of discussing UKIP performance.

    On the other hand, tiptoeing away might be a reasonable response to that too. :-)

  40. “We’re all in it together”

    Said the Cannibal to the missionary in the pot!


  41. @Tinged

    Yeah, I know they say that deep down we all have an ideology but I don’t really buy it, or to the extent that it’s true it doesn’t really amount to much.

    If you mean by ideology a prescribed system of thought like Marxism or Capitalism or whatnot, then no, many do not have an adherence to such a thing, and I certainly don’t, not even an adaptation. I find such systems insufficient to deal with the complexities of the modern world.

    If by ideology you really just mean that I have my own opinions on things then sure, but that doesn’t mean I have to be biased. I don’t have to try and shoehorn everything into someone else’s system or ideology or to support a particular party… if something doesn’t fit then I can just change my view.

    Of course, there’s still a danger of confirmation bias. That one tends to be more accommodating of evidence that supports your view rather than challenging it. But there are plenty of antidotes to that, including not being overly invested in an idea or party in the first place, surrounding yourself with critical friends, reading widely… even… omg… debating on the net with others of differing views!!

    Someone mentioned Popper a while back… was it you? I can’t remember… but that’s one way to treat the ideology thing really. That there’s always a chance that evidence may crop up that causes you to revise.

  42. @ Rich O

    Richard in N has answered basically. But just for a little bit more to make it clearer (or as it sometimes turns out: unclearer):

    Schumpeter, for a good reason considered Keynes to be a monetarist. Certainly, most of his money theory (that he didn’t borrow from Kalecki and oddly from Ricardo) is monetarist.

    Keynesian economic theory has never been implemented anywhere outside of the former Eastern Block countries (in the 1960s) with a minor problem: there was no market economy, while the whole thing assumes such a thing (cf. Oscar Lange).

    In a way till the mid-1960s there were some elements of the Keynesian economics present in the Western world – but it was the result of the post-war compromise: full employment as the top priority. In the UK eventually it took the shape of incomes policy, which is very mildly Keynesian.

    Nobody has ever implemented Friedman – apart from a few years in Chile, and Hungary (1980-82) or for that matter Hayek (in a lecture he gave in Cambridge Robinson asked him if his theory meant that it was raining and she brought an umbrella then she created unemployment, for which he gave the correct answer on the basis of his theory: yes).

    Neoliberalism as an ideology was not implemented, but it gave some determination to some people to carry out economic policies that solved the crisis of production that started in the mid 1960s and nobody dared to really challenge it till the second half of the 1970s. This was essentially putting the burden of economic restructuring on the shoulders of the vast majority of the population (but Thatcher eased it with North Sea oil and Reagan with easing borrowing).

    1994-2007 is the glorious years of the eclecticism of neoliberalism and social democracy – for 13 years there is enough money to finance this. The whole thing is based on debt at all levels (including firms) – neoliberal, because what the firms do is right, social democrat, because we redistribute some of the paper profit made.

    Because of this eclecticism, the lovely and fruitless debate about handling the crisis could be opened (and actually closed). Just listen to the parties’ narratives.

    Keynesianism does not come back and nobody treats the crisis with neoliberalism. What’s happening is plain: reducing the living standards of the majority in order to release surplus to handle the financial manifestation of the crisis. It is pretty meaningful (but not pretty) – but cannot happen either in Keynesian or neoliberal economics.

    What nobody knows is the level to which living standards have to be reduced to reach the equilibrium in the given axiom-system. Probably 0, but then revolution would be triggered much earlier, so it won’t happen.

    So, we have a wishie-washie enduring reduction in living standards and blame the declining Europe and rising East for that. Nice way to cover up the theoretical vacuum and the practical ignorance of business people.


  43. @ RiN

    “Seems I missed something on the last thread. TOH found an article that was making the same point that I’ve been hammering on about for ages, namely that total debt has been rising faster than GDP, nice to see that someone has been paying attention, just a shame that his graphs started in 97 and not in 77 or better yet in 67, because then you would have seen how it all really kicked off in 77 which coincidentally was when we started with the monetist/neo liberal experiment.”

    Check out Victor Perlo: Unstable Economy. It was published in the early 1970s. Mind you, he was a US communist, but he was a good economist (participated in the New Deal implementation).

  44. @ Carfrew

    I agree with a number of points, but…

    ” I find such systems insufficient to deal with the complexities of the modern world.”

    The world is not more complex today than it was in the 19th century. In many ways it is simpler. But it is more complex than it was in the 1970s.

    “if something doesn’t fit then I can just change my view.”

    Try it with things that directly affect the circumstances in which you satisfy your needs. It’s not “just”… Hence the enduring “tribalism” and the problems with “third” parties.

  45. Sorry for the three posts after each other (and this is the fourth….)

  46. @Oldnat

    I find it difficult to believe that UKIP can poll consistently >10% and not get at *least* one MP, even after taking their shambolic organisation and FPTP into account. Whether they will still be polling such numbers from (say) Dec 2014 is debatable but I wouldn’t write them off at this distance.

    One obvious game-changer is Cameron’s upcoming Europe speech. Blue will offer at least one EU in-out referendum in their 2015 manifesto, possibly two (pace David Davis), and this will be announced in that speech.

    This will (surprisingly) catch Labour off-guard (despite everybody knowing it’s coming) and, although the Libs will object, that probably doesn’t matter overmuch. So I assume the speech will be accompanied by a poll rise for the Conservatives.


    ta for your light-hearted responses to my light`-hearted responses to your original posts.


    K, fine, no probz Paul, ur kool…


    “In my humble opinion it is nothing like the post war period.
    The fundamentals we face are a global economy where skilled labour is going to be cheaper for decades in other parts of the world and where it is so much easier and less risky to have all manner of manufacturing and services performed in emerging economies than it is in Britain. When you add on that free trade has allowed multi nationals to channel their taxable profits to wherever they want them to go we have a double whammy where we do not have the jobs and we do not even have the tax income from profits made in this country.”


    Interestingly we had related problems in the post-war period. We were forced to cede our closed colonial markets to the Americans at Bretton Woods That saud, we couldn’t service the markets anyway because aside from all the bombing we had repurposed more than half our industry for the war effort. Meanwhile we still had a declining empire to protect so while rivals like Germany and Japan had their military needs catered for by NATO or whatever it was back then, we were still spending over 7% of GDP on the armed forces.

    We recovered through things like…
    – big loans taken out over a long period
    – building programme. Tories used to compete with Labour over who built the most houses
    – inflation
    – both labour and tories ensuring full employment as much as possible

  48. Jayblanc

    ” I suspect that portions on the right of the SNP would still like to over turn current equality laws, and doing so would certainly call into question any EU Accession.”

    Within the SNP? They would be very uncomfortable.

    While they may not be as “PC gone mad” as SLAB, they wouldn’t like to be thought old fashioned and backward. On things like same-sex marriage its a done deal, over but the process.

    Then there are the Founding Principles and as The Gannett (better now known as The Father of the Nation) explained to me c1954 “we would have ways of seeing that we kept to them”.They do.

    I don’t know about the 4th session, but the first had (thanks to Labour) more women MSP’s than Scotland had EVER IN TOTAL sent to Westminster.

    Two party leaders are openly gay. Two are women.

    An independent Scotland will be a modern progressive European country. Anything to be distictive from the English has got something going for it.

    I don’t know where you got the idea.

  49. @John B Dick

    However, all bets are off on “Within the SNP”. Post Independence, the SNP would certainly fracture as they see no need to present a united front once they have the only thing that united them.

  50. MARTYN

    It’s the usual FPTP problem. Developing parties don’t get MPs unless their support is concentrated in particular constituencies. Get that and building strength more widely is possible.

    There is no way that such a trend can be identified unless pollsters such as YG do decent sized samples which allow for regionally demographically balanced samples.

    That should be possible, given the size of the YG panel – but their continuing practice of conducting polls across GB on issues that are particularly restricted to England suggests that neither YG nor their clients are open to such a level of analysis.

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