This week’s YouGov results for the Sunday Times are now up here. Topline results are CON 31%, LAB 40%, LDEM 11%, UKIP 11% (slightly bigger Labour lead than other YouGov polls this week, but nothing outside the normal margin of error. We’d need to see some consistent 10 and 11 point leads before pondering whether the recent narrowing in the polls had faded away again).

The rest of the poll had various questions about party leaders, UKIP and the Conservatives, some questions on Abu Qatada, benefits and the NHS. Let’s start with Nigel Farage. Asked whether he is doing a good or bad job as leader of UKIP Farage gets very positive ratings – 44% think he is doing well, 20% badly giving him a positive job approval rating of +24, compared to the negative ratings of the three main party leaders. Of course, based on the actual question asked people should say this, whether someone likes or dislikes Farage’s politics, if you’ve taken a minor party that got under 3% at the last election to around 11% in the polls you are doing a good job!

Compare and contrast this to when YouGov asks if Miliband, Clegg and Farage would make a better PM than David Cameron. Despite a much, much better job approval rating only 11% think Farage would be better at being PM, 40% think he would be worse. Now, I don’t think any serious commentators were thinking that UKIP support was based on people thinking they were a serious alternative government anyway (it is largely a vote based on anti-immigration, anti-Liberalism sentiment, an anti-government protest and general positive reactions towards Farage’s anti-politician stance), but it underlines the difference between job approval ratings and whether people think a politician is a plausible Prime Minister. People thinking you are doing a good job as the leader of a minor party is clearly not the same thing as people thinking you’d do a good job running a country.

Asked about Cameron himself, a third of people say he has not done enough to modernise the Conservatives, 24% that he has gone too far and abandoned too many traditional Tory policies, 20% that he has gone the balance about right. As you’d expect, most current Tories think he has got things about right, most Labour and Lib Dem supporters than he hasn’t gone far enough, most UKIP supporters that he has gone too far. There is an even divide (36% to 36%) over whether David Cameron is a Thatcherite or not, though the party split is interesting – it is Labour supporters who are most likely to think Cameron is a Thatcherite (presumably respondents who do not regard this as a good thing!), most Conservative supporters don’t think he is. Only 15% think that Cameron was right when he said “we are all Thatcherites now”.

Abu Qatada

61% of people think that Qatada should be deported regardless of what happens to him in Jordan, compared to 25% who think that he should only be deported if we are satisfied that evidence gained from torture will not be used against him. However, when people are asked directly whether it would or would not acceptable for evidence obtained from torture to be used against Abu Qadata 51% say it would be unacceptable, compared to just 28% who accept it – an apparent contradiction in people’s views. My guess is that this is down to people thinking it is wrong for evidence from torture to be used against Abu Qatada… but that it is not an excuse for him to remain in Britain (essentially a “yeah, it’s very wrong, but it’s not our problem”).

Benefits

Asked about the general overall package of benefit changes that the government have introduced over the last month (including cutting council tax benefit, capping benefits, reducing benefits below the rate of inflation and the so-called “bedroom tax”), a majority (56%) say that on balance they support the changes, compared to 31% who are opposed. Supporters of the benefit changes include a third of Labour voters.

Accident and Emergency

Overall 29% per cent of people think A&E has got worse since the coalition came to power, compared to just 5% who think it has improved and 32% who think it has stayed the same (and compared to a more neutral verdict about what happened under Labour). People are less negative about A&E at their own local hospital – amongst those who have attended their local A&E in the last three years 21% think it has got better, 28% worse, 40% stayed the same. This is a fairly common pattern we also see on crime, schools and about people’s own MPs, people are more positive about their own local services than they are about services in the country as a whole.


308 Responses to “YouGov/Sunday Times – CON 31, LAB 40, LD 11, UKIP 11”

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  1. Ken: serves you right

  2. @PaulCroft
    “I have lobbed in £10 in honour of Liz. Seems a good cause.”

    Thank you so much.

  3. @Ken

    Presumably it included a link – put a space in between the Http at the start, or just copy and paste the text in comment box.

  4. @Mark,

    “Groupthink”.

  5. I wonder if Andy Burnham has given us the hint about the new policy announcement tomorrow – http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-22328897

  6. @Mark Johnson

    I don’t think any side can claim persecution here – as someone who has a habit of posting partisan rants it’s mostly down to disagreeing with some equally partisan right-wing comment. Anthony, whilst stressing partisan comments are unwanted, can’t/won’t mod here 24/7.

  7. @PAULCROFT………As you know, my contributions are insightful and enlightening, but AW blew for offside on my latest approach.

  8. I have to say that I am quite impressed by Andy Burnham and some of his recent policy ideas.

    Tax breaks for “living wages” sounds a doable ‘nudge’ type policy, albeit that whether a company took it up would be a cold hard cost-benefit calculation.

    And although I am not sure it’s actually possible to ban “Zero Hours” contracts, I do agree that they are rather lopsided arrangements. My eldest stepdaughter is on one.

  9. I note most people, most probably quite correctly, saying the government (both sides) are relying on the economy to perform wonders for them at the next election. One thing to look at is what the government were predicting for the economy 2010-2015 when thye first came to power. Their policies were engineered to make the first two years to hurt quite a bit and then the economy to pull through and be bristling with positive growth for the next election. To make a massive underestimation, it has not gone to plan. The first few years GDP has bounced between retraction and positive, the economy has flatlined, the debt has grown more than expected, the AAA ratings have gone and confidence has been shot. You could argue all day whether it has been through austerity, problems in Europe, Tsunamis, snow, rain etc However, every plan the Treasury puts together pushes the recovery back even futher. Even on unmemplyment, where the figures have managed to be kept subdued, mainly due to a very flexible workforce, rather than government policy, these are also turning against the government.

    So how people think they will managed to turn the economy around baffles me.

    The only hope I think the government will have is if they get away with expectation management so well that they put in the voters minds that anything better than a recession is a major plus, Maybe then and only then will they be able to point to the economy. They did this to some degree with the figures for 2013 Q1, however when the US announced theirs after the UK , out “positive” figure looked, well, a bit embarrassing. Maybe they will keep pushing the better than a recession line and hope for the best? They haven’t got much else really economy wise.

  10. @ CRAIG……..No link, except the rather tenuous one to my brain.

  11. It is not being reported very widely by the media but Ed M has been visiting towns/cities meeting the general public and answering their questions. Last week for instance he was in Witney and Lincoln. In both places he was very well received.

  12. @LIZH………..Now I understand why the gap didn’t narrow as I predicted, Ed M hasn’t been seen, except of course, on his box, outside Working Men’s clubs.

  13. @ various = the reply I fully expected! – lol

  14. @LizH – well thats because its easy to trash what the government is trying to do without saying very much about what his lot would do instead – simple

  15. @Ken
    “Ed M hasn’t been seen, except of course, on his box, outside Working Men’s clubs.”

    In case you weren’t aware, Witney is your dear leader’s constituency.

  16. Zero hours contracts need not be banned per se. Just give workers the right to e.g. 1 days holiday per month paid at their basic rate per hour regardless of how many hours they’ve worked.

    Then the contracts will be much less exploitative but allow the employer some flexibility, if that’s what they really want zero contract hours for.

    It could be great for employees too; sign up for 20 zero hour contracts & you could be on paid holiday for most of the month. That would get the benefits bill down! ;-)

  17. @Mark Johnson
    “well thats because its easy to trash what the government is trying to do without saying very much about what his lot would do instead – simple”

    Just to please you Labour will announce a major policy tomorrow.

  18. Ken

    There is a worstist case scenario whereby Tottingham win all their remaining matches and Chelski win all theirs except the one they lose to the Tots.

    Please tell me that will NOT happen.

  19. Ken

    Ah……………. so long as you don’t beat Moan U away you will be incentificated to play well at home against Totty.

  20. @Paul Croft

    Thanks again. I don’t like to single out just one charity so for instance this year I have run for a Children’s hospital, Age UK and a fundraiser for some local projects for a nearby village.

  21. Liz

    @Paul Croft

    Thanks again. I don’t like to single out just one charity so for instance this year I have run for a Children’s hospital, Age UK and a fundraiser for some local projects for a nearby village.

    Right: No guitarists yet then?

  22. @PAULCROFT………..Great atmosphere dahn’ the Bridge today, we could be the first team to hold both European titles at the same time, for 5 days anyway.

  23. Not another debate on partisanship !!!

    As Anthony will remind everyone, this site is to discuss polling, elections and issues which affect them. As long, as you stick to that principle, then there is no problem. Once you start discussing merits or not of policies or politicians, without any context to polling or elections, it is not something the site encourages.

  24. MJ

    @ various = the reply I fully expected! – lol

    ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

    LOL indeed !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    That was certainly VERY funny.

  25. @ LIZH…Just replied to your post but got modded, I suggest we meet on the naughty step in future.

  26. @Ken

    I have only been there once and didn’t like it. Why don’t you join me delivering leaflets for Labour instead.

  27. @PaulCroft
    “Right: No guitarists yet then?”

    Too many people supporting that charity already.

  28. Just read this in the Guardian:
    “Miliband will on Monday answer critics who claim he has no policies by publishing an alternative Queen’s Speech containing six key economic bills.”

  29. @ LIZH………… A few years ago, I saw a sign on a garden gate that read, ‘ We shoot every third canvasser, the second one just left ‘. Do you wear a flak jacket ?

  30. @Paul Croft – and just like my wife again – i actually look forward to a proper policy being announced so it can be checked over and commented on.
    I actually believe there is good and bad policies in all the Parties – can you say the same?

  31. Who’s this, ‘ Alternative Queen ?’ I’m happy with the one we’ve got.

  32. MJ

    Can I have her email so that I can snitch on you please?

    [There you go, that was a question so you can have the last word yourself, and perhaps also give those examples that you have failed to come up with so far – if you like??]

  33. Buried in a Graun article on UKIP, the reporter may have accidently broken the embargo:

    “Miliband will on Monday answer critics who claim he has no policies by publishing an alternative Queen’s Speech containing six key economic bills.”

  34. mj

    I actually believe there is good and bad policies in all the Parties – can you say the same?

    Well, I’d say “are” having had the benefit of a Grammar School education, but, apart from that quibble, yes indeedy.

    Nighty night.

  35. “Miliband will on Monday answer critics who claim he has no policies by publishing an alternative Queen’s Speech containing six key economic bills.”

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2013/apr/28/tory-response-ukip-local-elections

    All this “Labour has no policies” stuff is wearing a bit thin.

  36. @Amber

    Snap!

  37. “Alternative Queen”

    I wonder who he has in mind? Diane Abbott would be quite popular perhaps.

  38. We have an, ‘ Alternative Queen’ on drag nights at our local pub, ‘she’s’ called, ‘ The Duchess’ big chap, lots of slap, but entertaining, I don’t know whether she’s got six key economic bills, though.

  39. @PAULCROFT – i will give you that one -lol
    Night, night Paul

  40. Ken “six key economc bills”

    Oo-er Missis !

  41. Anthony

    If you must moderate my jokes can you leave the slightly better ones in please?

    Ta.

  42. PAULCROFT………..Our alternative queen is the type of fella’ that just might have six Bills……….!

  43. @ Phil Haines

    All this “Labour has no policies” stuff is wearing a bit thin.
    —————
    The alternative economic policies thing was probably meant to happen at the beginning of the local election campaign but was suspended because of Thatcher’s death & funeral.

  44. I’m sure that if Ed M has anything worthwhile to offer, we Tories will be only too pleased to use it, after all, we’re all in this together.

  45. Re Miliband’s Queen Speech ,

    It sounds more like a relaunch to quell the doubters in his party and Labour’s core vote .

    Certain unions haven’t been helpful recently , nevermind the Blairites , and voters expecting a reversal of Welfare Reform are becoming increasingly aware that Miliband has no intention of doing so.

  46. Ken

    How about scraping the bedroom tax, and reinstating 50% tax. for a start that would be popular.

  47. Roger ,

    The trouble is Balls refuses to confirm he would reinstate the 50 % rate

  48. @ Chasglas

    It sounds more like a relaunch to quell the doubters in his party and Labour’s core vote
    —————
    Or Ed Balls’s 5 point plan (yet again) + 1 of the other ideas that have been mooted more recently? That would be a disappointment for us political ‘junkies’ but it’s certainly a different environment for discussing a stimulus package now, given the IMF & business & ‘the markets’ are all turning against policies which put austerity before growth.

  49. @RICH

    “@carfrew,
    Demographically I think you might be correct. I see little chance despite the talk, of an even moderately let govt in 2015, no matter who gets in, but certainly more chance around 2020, especially if things remain tough throughout the next parliament.
    Rich”

    ————-

    There’s quite a lot that Labour would have difficulty doing immediately, partly because of the economy but also because certain useful policies may not happinate babyboomers, eg house-building.

    The priority for them is jobs though, and not just for growth. Electorally, unemployment suits the Tories more than Labour. From their perspective Labour really need to fix that VI problem…

  50. Amber
    “Or Ed Balls’s 5 point plan (yet again) + 1”
    If it’s just that plan, it’ll probably flop – hopefully this doesn’t come across as partisan (my preferred outcome out of the possible ones is a Lab government, preferably coalition), but I’m not so sure those small policies would get the public excited about Labour.

    “..but it’s certainly a different environment for discussing a stimulus package now..against policies which put austerity before growth..”
    If that is the announcement, it’d be extremely high risk, but at least nobody could say that Labour have no policies.
    I won’t get my hopes up over anything too radical (a switch to dual-targeting inflation (through tax) and employment (through spend) would be pretty radical, but probably not popular with the public), but they’ll probably still have to be pretty big policy announcements to not go unnoticed by the public.

    I’m just looking forward to any poll movement, stuck on Con 32, Lab 40 would get pretty boring. ;)

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