This week’s YouGov poll for the Sunday Times is now up online here. Topline voting intention is CON 33%, LAB 39%, LDEM 11%, UKIP 12%

The leaders approval ratings are minus 20 for Cameron (from minus 17 last week), minus 34 for Miliband (from minus 31 last week) and minus 51 for Clegg (from minus 49). On the regular economic trackers optimism continues to creep upwards – the feel good factor (those thinking things will get better minus those who think things will get worse) is now minus 26, now the best (or least worst) figure since April 2010.

Much of the rest of the poll dealt with Ed Miliband and the Trade Unions. Most of Ed Miliband’s ratings remain poor, and if anything are getting worse rather than improving. Only 20% think he would be up to the job of Prime Minister (down from 25% in May). Only 18% think he has provided an effective opposition to the government. Only 10% think he is a strong leader, 47% a weak leader (even amongst Labour voters only 22% think he is strong, 26% weak).

I’ve written about Ed Miliband’s poor polling figures here several times before, so won’t repeat the same discussion at length. The short version is that yes, they are pretty bad… but Labour have a lead in the polls despite Miliband’s poor figures. The question, which cannot currently be answered, is whether they’ll matter more as we get closer to an election and people’s choice is (perhaps) as much about a choice between alternate governments as a verdict on the incumbent.

29% of people think that Ed Miliband has been too close to the Unions, 13% too distant and 22% about right. 36% say don’t know. Despite all the coverage of Falkirk, the Unite row and Tom Watson’s resignation (which happened just before fieldwork started), this is almost unchanged from when YouGov asked the same question last month, suggesting that in terms of if Labour are seen as close to the Unions the row has has not made any real difference yet. Of course, that’s not just what it’s about – the Conservatives are very clearly using it to try and make Miliband look weak. Depending on what does happen it is both a risk and opportunity for Miliband. Depending on the action he takes he could end up looking weaker… or stronger.

Looking more specifically at Labour’s links to the Trade Unions, 26% think they are good thing (including a narrow majority – 53% – of Labour voters), 35% think they are a bad thing (though this only includes 9% of Labour voters). 41% of people think the unions have a lot of influence in Labour, and this is mainly seen as a bad thing (35% bad, 6% good). 33% think they do not have much influence (21% think that’s a good thing, 12% a bad thing). By 46% to 27% people take a negative view of the amount of funding Labour receives from the Unions, and by 42% to 32% people think it is unacceptable for Labour MPs to be sponsored by Unions. Once again, Labour voters take a more supportive stance – 56% think there is nothing wrong with Labour’s funding from the Unions, 60% think it is acceptable for MPs to be sponsored by Trade Unions.

Is that any different to the way funding from businesses or rich individuals would be viewed? No, probably not. Polling last year found opinions of Labour’s relationship with donors was much the same as opinions about the Conservatives, and views about a cap on donations from unions was much the same as views about a cap on donations from business.


265 Responses to “YouGov/Sunday Times – CON 33, LAB 39, LD 11, UKIP 12”

1 4 5 6
  1. You have to go back to October ’74 to find the last time a governing party increased its vote share at a GE – yes, even Thatcher didn’t manage it.

    Thus, I find it a bit hard to believe the Tories can get more than 36%-ish, and that’s if they play all their cards right.

    Still, stranger things have happened. Let’s wait and see.

    Report comment

  2. I think the main thing is what will happen to the LD votes – some have obviously swung to Labour – so its now up to Clegg & Co to bring most of them back to the fold in time for the 2015 GE.
    Also the UKIP vote needs to mostly return to the Tories in time for May 2015.

    It really is quite simple for right leaning UKIP voters.
    Vote for UKIP in 2015 and you will get Labour and EM in Downing Street.
    So, its up to you lot really – lol

    Report comment

  3. Circus animal ban goes too far, say MPs
    ———-

    MPs ban doesn’t go far enough, say Circus animals

    Report comment

  4. @Spearmint

    “Although I do hope the Blairites calling for this change are planning to dip into their very deep pockets to make up the funding difference…”

    I think that their actual plan is to get the spotlight swung onto Tory funding as soon as they can. Chakrabortty kicked things off in the Graun this morning, but they need other papers to pick it up. It’s not a subject you can see either the Times or the DT readily covering.

    Report comment

  5. One of the Animals the MP’s want banned are Zebras.

    I am not so sure that it’s that Black and White .

    Can We ban clowns while we are at it starting with the star performers at PMQ’s

    Report comment

  6. “I think that their actual plan is to get the spotlight swung onto Tory funding as soon as they can. Chakrabortty kicked things off in the Graun this morning, but they need other papers to pick it up. It’s not a subject you can see either the Times or the DT readily covering.”

    ————

    Yes it’s potentially a double-whammy. Removes an attack point over the unions, then they can pressure the Tories over their big donations.

    Of course, Labour could lose a fair chunk of funding. But if they are then in position if elected to introduce swinging caps on donations Tories are in a world of hurt.

    Could Labour do that unilaterally? I assume they’d get LD support. After what happened over reducing the number of seats Tories might find it hard to complain….

    Report comment

  7. Swingeing…

    Report comment

  8. @SINE NOMINE

    “so its now up to Clegg & Co to bring most of them back to the fold in time for the 2015 GE.
    Also the UKIP vote needs to mostly return to the Tories in time for May 2015.”

    —————-

    Seems so easy when you put it that way….

    Report comment

  9. @ Spearmint

    Although I do hope the Blairites calling for this change are planning to dip into their very deep pockets to make up the funding difference…
    ————-
    That’s what the Blairites want to happen; individual donors replacing the Union fees. And then the Labour Party would be exactly the same as the Tories – i.e. funded by a few wealthy individuals instead of millions of ordinary, normal, regular working people.

    Report comment

  10. Shevii,

    I preferred Jimmy Connors vs. Marina Navratilova: two world champions (albeit past their primes) and with appropriate handicap helps for Navratilova to make it a bit more interesting.

    Report comment

  11. I suppose Nick Might like a rerun of The Tory Coalition but I think the majority of LD’s would far prefer a Coalition with Labour which even with a vote in the Low teens for the LD’s in 2015 seems a distinct possibility.

    Then The Conservatives and UKIP can concentrate on the issue closest to their heart content , bickering over Europe and migration .

    Report comment

  12. @Sine Nomine

    “It really is quite simple for right leaning UKIP voters.
    Vote for UKIP in 2015 and you will get Labour and EM in Downing Street.
    So, its up to you lot really – lol”

    This is the hope/expectation that Tory sympathisers will be reciting to themselves in order to get some sleep between now and May 2015, but it’s an assumption based on not all together solid ground. A lot of ex Tory voters and supporters now throwing their lot in with UKIP have a deep antipathy to the current Tory Party leadership and this may supersede their fear of a Labour Government. Skewering Cameron and Osborne may be a temptation impossible to resist whatever the political and electoral consequences

    It’s also worth noting that the current UKIP vote is made up of defectors from all parts of the political spectrum. If this vote implodes, as you seem to think it inevitably will (I don’t, by the way), then who’s to say that the ex Labour UKIPers don’t return home to keep out a Tory Government. Or ex Lib Dems too with similar motives.

    Be careful about assuming that votes always move laterally and logically. Those days have long gone.

    Report comment

  13. So basically its all up for grabs really.

    None of us actually know whats going to happen in May 2015 and in fact none of us really know whats going to happen tomorrow never mind 2015 -lol

    Report comment

  14. It seems clear that the blairites agenda is to transform the Labour party into a British version of the democratic party in the US

    Report comment

  15. The three tweets below explain why Len wasn’t complaining about what Ed said in his speech.

    Matthew Hancock ?@matthancockmp 27m

    So according to this by @PickardJE today’s proposals increase the power of Union bosses http://on.ft.com/18L4n8s 1/2

    Matthew Hancock ?@matthancockmp 27m

    2/2 Instead of money automatically going from unions to Labour, it would go only at the discretion of Union barons. No wonder Len’s smiling

    Karl McCartney ?@karlmccartney 14m

    @matthancockmp same point @nadhimzahawi was making earlier @Channel4News putting it to Caroline Flint who didn’t like being found out at all

    Report comment

1 4 5 6