Tom Newton Dunn at the Sun has just tweeted out tomorrow morning’s YouGov figures for the Sun. Topline voting intention figures are CON 36%, LAB 36%, LDEM 10%, UKIP 12%.

It’s the first time that the Conservatives have caught Labour in a YouGov poll since March 2012 (during that period between Cameron’s European “veto” and the omnishambles budget), although ICM also had a poll showing them neck-and-neck a few months back.

I will obviously add all my usual caveats about any unusual poll – sure, it could be that the Tories have actually caught up with Labour after a couple of polls showing the lead down to three or four points… but just as likely that it’s just a bit of an outlier. It’s the trend that counts, so keep an eye over the next few days to see if there are more very small (or absent) Labour leads…

283 Responses to “YouGov/Sun – CON 36, LAB 36, LD 10, UKIP 12”

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  1. Oldnat, PeterCairns, Stuart Dickson – So that’s three. (3.25 if you count me, as I am on the fence on voting for four parties in 2015 – I never decide until the day before voting)

  2. The 3 things I have got from the LD conference, whilst trying to avoid them all, are:

    1. 5p plastic bag tax.
    2. Vince Cable is unhappy with Tories.
    3. Free school meals for KS1 children.

    Hopefully number 3 will be extended to all primary children.

    Probably the reason why they haven’t had a bounce. I’m sure Labour will come up with more policies than the LD’s and should get a bounce, i’m not sure what the Tories can come up with to influence VI, because they are already in power.

  3. The Conservatives will undoubtedly focus on the improving economy, people taken out of tax, and ‘x’ private sector job created and so on.

    It’s their best (only?) bet.

  4. I’d put the current underlying YouGov figures at about Con 33.6% and Lab 37.5% – so a lead of 4% or just under. (My five-poll prediction of 4.8% from yesterday is already feeling some strain…)

  5. I agree the Tories will be talking about the economy a lot, nothing much new then. I think Labour will have a trick or 2 up their sleeves.

    I really don’t think that most people pay any attention to conference season, it makes the guts churn.

  6. Statgeek

    I used to go the the TUC on an invitation from TGWU in the 80’s. Very interesting, usually didn’t agree with a word but nice to get to know the opposition better. At dinners i usually get my confersation to cricket or sport generally.

  7. What will be the net effect of the conference season on VI?

    If I were feeling in my usual cynical mood I would say “nothing”.

    However, I think the LDs had a relatively good conference, and NC came over well in the press and media (and I say that very objectively as it is well-known that I am a rather grumpy ex-employee, activist and supporter who feels very, very let down, if not betrayed for all my decades of foot-sore work!).

    However, it seems not to have had any effect on VI.

    The Conservative Conference “might” have a few dog-whistle headline grabbing moments – which will nudge up their VI temporarily – above where it is “drifting up” to anyway, thanks to the economic improvements.

    The Labour Conference is the key one which could really have some longer term impact on VI IMO. Milliband must be allowed by the strategy mob to beging to flesh out his “One Nation” message. If he does, he could get Labour back in the game. If not, and it descends into the Union contributions argument as what comes over, Labour will probably “drift downwards” in VI over the coming months.

    If the Conservatives have established an average lead of 3 to 5% by Christmas, I reckon, all things being equal with no mega-events to change things waywardly, that 2015 is lost to Labour and Ed will never be PM – However, if it is neck-and-neck at Christmas Labour might end up the biggest party in 2015. If Labour establish a 3 to 5% lead by this Christmas, then Labour might win outright.

    Why this Christmas? – because just over a year before polling day is a critical “positioning time” for public perceptions of ‘competence’ and ‘probability of outcome’ to build-up in voters minds before the “last sprint”.

    Only time will tell if my prognosis turns out to be correct!

  8. HoofHearted

    If you turn sharp right you should find the door to the Daily Mail Rant site.

    As far as I can tell no Right of Centre Posters have been hounded off here am glad to say as I enjoy the debate ,few people show political colours, Anthony can explain why some do and the only person I know whose posts are regularly pre-moderated is me!

    I think what you might be failing to grasp is that this is a debate site where relevant comments come from all political persuasions.

    I do tend to find that those [who] complain about political bias when what they are really objecting to is balance.

    [Although, it ISN’T a debate site, it’s specifically NOT a site for political debate – AW]

  9. @Neil A

    Yes, they tied the seat reduction to the boundary changes, but they didn’t have to reduce the number of seats at all, and if they were going to reduce them, they didn’t have to pick a number that benefits Tories.

    You may say you “believe” It gives no “inherent” benefit to Tories but reducing seats did actually offer Tories a benefit at expense of Libdems. Which was my point.

    And yes, even if it’s true that any redrawing of the boundaries will disadvantage Lib Dems, how does that make it ok to reduce seat numbers and hit them further (and in fact it’s likely to deny representation to all small parties, already disadvantaged under fptp).

    In the end, your post does nothing to challenge the fact that the seat reduction was arbitrary and benefited Tories at expense of others, or that changing the registration benefits Tories, ON TOP of redrawing boundaries.

  10. @Turk,
    ‘it’s to late for a new leader to make a impact’

    Whilst I do not expect a change, I disagree with that assertion. Harold Wilson became Labour leader in Feb 1963 , and I believe he did make an impact by the Oct 1964 election!

  11. The man who brought Nintendo into the video games market, Hiroshi Yamauchi, has died aged 85. Very sad day for all of us involved in the industry.

    Which brings me to an important point. As has been discussed on here before, it would be very hard to re-industrialise Britain, and we have to face up to the fact that we have a service economy. What I’d like to see is an emphasis on the creative industries, particularly gaming.

    Australia has their Creative Australia policy and a very strong games industry, as do Sweden and France, but we need more of it here – it’s a huge industry to tap into with a lot of available talent, but many people are moving abroad for lack of jobs here.

    I think it’s a problem we still face in the games industry that we’re not yet taken seriously as an art form, despite employing thousands of people and being a major economic force. Government grants for start-ups (expanding existing ones) would be endlessly helpful.

  12. @ RED RAG I think it is a bit unfair on Labour that we are getting two Conservative conferences this year. One either side of the Labour one.

    A point that seems regularly missed is that Ed is the first opposition leader since the war to be confronted with two government parties. Normally the LotO gets support in attacking the government from the third party; for the first time since the thirties this isn’t happening.

  13. @Mrnameless

    “What I’d like to see is an emphasis on the creative industries, particularly gaming.”

    Look no further than Dundee.

  14. It isn’t really a surprise that tradesmen are finding more work during a housing stimulus…

  15. @KW

    “A point that seems regularly missed is that Ed is the first opposition leader since the war to be confronted with two government parties.”

    On balance, he’s also the first opposition leader to not have to compete with another major opposition party (unless UKIP counts).

  16. @GRAHAM

    “Whilst I do not expect a change, I disagree with that assertion. Harold Wilson became Labour leader in Feb 1963 , and I believe he did make an impact by the Oct 1964 election!”


    So did Christine Keeler and Mandy Rice Davis!!…

  17. Though I don’t think they ever led the Labour Party…

  18. I suspect the death of John Smith probably had an impact on the 1997 Election and the appointment of Tony Blair although I think it would still have been a convincing Labour Victory, possibly a greater impact on the subsequent 2 Elections.

    Would a change of any party Leader now influence the 2015 Election possibly but it is highly unlikely barring misfortune that it will be the Conservatives or LD .

    If Ed were to go 10:1 on whom so ever replaced him would also get a media hand bagging .
    Let’s see how it looks after the Conferences especially if there are some meaningful policy decisions announced

  19. @Carfrew

    Might I also add that whilst Blair became Labour leader in July 1994 and had to wait almost 3 years to fight an election, I feel pretty certain he would have made an impact had an election taken place in 1995.

  20. @ TOH

    “At dinners i usually get my confersation to cricket or sport generally.”

    I’m not sure that is that far from what most political groups get up to anyway! My experience is that they have had enough politics or talking to the converted by the end of the day. Although I do remember one local election where Lab and LD often would end up in the same pub at the end of the evening and things would sometimes get a bit heated. I remember chatting to one Lib Dem about lower league football and we were both starting to get looks from both sides that maybe we shouldn’t be talking to the ‘enemy’ in a non contentious manner :-)

  21. Must read piece by John McCain in Pravda

    The comments in the Russian edition suggest that John is the most popular man in Russia now, that is, everyone wants to burn him alive

  22. “it’s specifically NOT a site for political debate – AW”

    Hear, hear: it’s for footy and pups.

  23. @Shevii

    Not my scene at all (places where politicos gather). Especially not where people might judge me based on non-contentious conversation.

    My local pub has a ‘no colours’ rule. Even Scottish tops are banned. Fair play to them. There’s usually a good mix of Rangers and Celtic supporters in there for Old Firm games, and not a serious word amongst them.



    If we are including post 2014 VI in that, then it’s an overestimate. Greens are becoming more & more attractive as the destination for my vote – especially when I see Patrick Harvie.

    So even some with a party colour may not be a tribal voter. :-)

  25. @ Graham re Carfrew

    “Well, he would say that, wouldn’t he?”

  26. shevii

    My typing & spelling awful this morning, sorry about that. I’m sure your right about that. I certainly remember Bill , now Sir William Morris was really into cricket. Very much my sort of bloke apart from his politics.

  27. Re hounding, none of that, been following site years…..more cons posters when cons ahead/good news, more lab when lab ahead/good news.

    Left of centre but anti-EU/immigration?

    Be like me… UKIP, splits the right in parliament, but drags debate away from screaming ‘racist’ towards something more rational….though generally still patronising.

    What we generally don’t like on here are partisan/nonsense comments. Though its conference season, so par for course I guess…

  28. ADRIAN B
    “EM’s approval stays stubbornly negative, DC is consistently seen as best PM, Con are considered to be trusted more on the economy, DC & GO are considered to be better on the economy than EM & EB, even on Syria (where he was closer to public opinion) he iconsidered to have handled the matter worse than DC.”

    I think you are placing too much credence on the responses to pollster-designed polling on these issues. A suitable humility might be in order when giving credence to the home based source of our discussions, inviting, as they do, firm opinions on matters and personalities to which few people give a thought from one year to the next.

  29. On the More Important Subject of Football

    Uefa members have backed a move to a winter tournament in Qatar

    Surely when they awarded the tournament to Qatar they would have known that summer temperatures are typically 50 degrees, it just proves that the lure of money and greed trumps common sense.

    “The Conservatives will undoubtedly focus on the improving economy, people taken out of tax, and ‘x’ private sector job created and so on.
    It’s their best (only?) bet.”


    And vans. Lots more vans. Who else has vans? If you haven’t benefited from the economy, you may still see the vans, reaching the parts other policies can’t reach…

  31. I don’t know what ads everyone else gets on ukpolling report, but this one keeps popping up for me

    Along with the Alzheimer’s society – why I have no idea, I still have hopefully many more years until I get there!

    But that end of Britain article sure has some alarming graphs. For all the back and forth between Labour and Tories on here about which party is best for the economy, I think those graphs clearly answer the question. Neither! But it looks like we are in for some hard times ahead….

  32. Graham

    I would agree with you if there was another Harold Wilson lurking in the Labour ranks.
    And to be fair he didn’t take over in a leadership battle as you know it was because Hugh Gaitskell died suddenly, so he had the support of the whole party when he won a narrow victory over the Tories in 1964 ,not bad for a ex Liberal party member.

  33. @GRAHAM

    “Might I also add that whilst Blair became Labour leader in July 1994 and had to wait almost 3 years to fight an election, I feel pretty certain he would have made an impact had an election taken place in 1995.”


    You mean we might have had tuition fees, ATOS etc. a bit earlier?

    A consequent election in 2007/8rather than 2010 would have been interesting…

  34. Richard

    It does make one wonder how the next government is going to balance the books. Taxes will rise, more cuts to come. Which party/parties will win a tough argument like this. Tories won 2010, just. Pull that one off and you will get into power.

  35. Richard

    That ad is popping up for you because of your interest in libertarian radical(in some folks opinion) right wing economics, did you by any chance buy the Stockman book over the internet? I get loads of financial services ads and management training, business consulting and commercial vehicle ads

  36. Taxes will rise, more cuts to come.

    Taxes are almost certainly going to have to rise, and it’s been irresponsible of governments (Labour and Conservative) not to do so for the vast majority of the population.

    Of course, that system should be progressive, and the very richest should have their taxes raised most, but the problem is we have a government who seems either unable or unwilling to address tax havens and as a result they’re losing a ton of revenue. So as a result, taxes will need to be raised on everyone else. I’d argue £50,000+ should be the bracket where rises kick in.

    Let’s also not forget that under Thatcher, the top rate of tax was 60%. That might be necessary.

    The Tories can’t have it both ways – either raise taxes and pay off the deficit, or cut taxes and watch it grow. Letting go of revenue and refusing to enforce tax law will not help.

  37. Oh Anthony, why couldn’t you have waited to update the polling average until after the Labour conference?

    All right Reg, you win. Hit me with a manifesto pledge.

  38. MrNameless

    Or really cut the size of the State not fiddle round the edges. Your missed an obvious alternative strategy.

  39. @Richard

    Those graphs are meaningless, and their claims of ‘predicting’ anything are nonsense.

    Here’s a useful graph.

    Same source.

  40. @Mrnameless

    “I’d argue £50,000+ should be the bracket where rises kick in.”

    I always smile when people set an ‘ideal amount’.

  41. TOH,

    Government revenue in 2011/12 was £589bn – expenditure was £710bn – which sixth of government spending would you cut to the tune of £121 billion?

  42. @RIN

    No, not guilty, never even heard of Stockman :)

    I have been wondering for some time how google targets us for ads. Sometimes I will see an ad for lord Ashcroft polls, or some political event here, and the fact it is only on this site and conservative home leads me to think some ads are site specific, but then some are obviously clearly personally tailored. (search for a product on Amazon, come here and the same product is in an ad)

    But then some are so way off and only on this site that it makes we wonder if it looks at the interests of everyone looking at this site, and decides we generally fall in a specific demographic, and targets ads that way? Which would be quite alarming if it does….Like the Alzheimers one?

    But I can confirm I don’t recall having any ads for financial services , management training, business consulting and commercial vehicles so that makes me feel better! I still think google knows far too much about us….

  43. @ Richard

    I got that Ad too! Even though I am very glass half empty about the economy I wasn’t quite as gloom and doom as money week!

    I suspect the site has a series of ads specific to the site demographics and then some based on your browsing.

  44. Mr Nameless

    Not my job but it can be done. Many services would go and we would have to pay for NHS treatment but that is coming anyway. I believe in low taxes and paying for services required. Indeed at the moment i pay twice for healthcare, not complaining about it just stating a fact.

  45. Re The End of Britain article which keeps popping up as an ad for Moneyweek – I saw that some months ago, so since then I have a sneaky look at Moneyweek on the shelves at WHSmiths. Its predictions seem all over the place in its articles – sometimes of the “we are out of the woods” category, and sometimes “we are all doomed” category. So, I think it is a deliberate “shocker” to attract people to buy the mag.

    Certainly, the long term graphs for UK Ltd look dire – indeed, the other day when I was talking of saving £50 a month out of my meager salary, a barrister at work who follows things financial, said it would be better to buy £50 worth of Swiss Francs and stuff them in a tin than save anything in sterling.

    The only alternative he offered was save up and every four months buy a gold sovereign. Whatever I did he warned me under no circumstances to save in British Pounds either in cash, savings or a bank.

    Is he right – is our currency that doomed long term?

  46. TOH

    Paying for NHS!

    Who’s going to get that one past the electorate.

  47. Turk,
    Harold Wilson did actually have quite a tough leadership battle – having to beat George Brown and James Callaghan

    ‘You mean we might have had tuition fees, ATOS etc. a bit earlier?’
    Maybe so – though at least we would have avoided the privatisation of the railways!

  48. I wouldn’t say doomed, just very low interest rates and slowly all the currencies of developing nations are rising in value compared to developed. There’s a big gap between ‘fine’ & ‘doomed’.

  49. @Richard – ” …some alarming graphs.”

    Thomas G Clark can provide some perspective on moneyweek’s sales routine:


  50. @ Billy Bob

    Thomas G Clark’s graph shows that the most effective period in our history of reducing national debt as a proportion of GDP was during the Mixed-Economy Keynesian Consensus!!

    And it was a much happier time for most people too!

    Why don’t we have a political party bold enough to be dedicated to restoring the Mixed-Economy and Keynesian economics?

    What a pity – I’d vote for it!

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