This morning’s daily YouGov poll for the Sun has topline figures of CON 33%, LAB 39%, LDEM 11%, UKIP 13% – full tabs are here. The six point Labour lead is down from the big post-conference leads last week, but a bit too “in the middle” to really be confident what is going on. As ever, it’s common to have a lot of up and down in the polls in conference season, so don’t get too excited – wait and see what they look like once they are all over and things have died down.

There were also the first reactions to the announcements the Tories made at the start of the conference, which broadly got thumbs up – 62% supported allowing married couples to transfer £1000 of their tax allowance when one of them stays at home or earns less than their allowance, 68% supported making the long term unemployed undertake full time community work or risk loosing their benefits, 50% support giving guarantees to banks to encourage them to offer 95% mortgages.

In all three cases, I doubt there will be any impact (help to buy is just changing the timing of something already announced, forcing the long term unemployed to take work of some sort was probably perceived as the sort of thing the Conservatives supported anyway, the transferrable tax allowance is worth a relatively small amount) – just getting high approval ratings in polls doesn’t mean it will have any sort of effect. If the Conservatives do get any conference boost, the most likely time will be after David Cameron’s own speech, the part of party conferences that tends to get the most coverage and publicity.

307 Responses to “YouGov/Sun – CON 33, LAB 39, LD 11, UKIP 13”

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  1. He’s already swamped out all press coverage of the Tories on the third day of their conference. Maybe the Commies really have secretly infiltrated major British institutions in a sinister plot to hand power back to Labour!

  2. After the Tories summer campaign regarding how weak EM is it is a pity for them that EM has so far got on the wrong side of the US by not supporting bombing Syria, a big fight with energy companies on energy prices and now a huge fight with the DM protecting his father’s memory.

    Taking on the US, big business and the Press is ruining the Cons summer narrative.

  3. It was a stupid narrative to begin with. The first thing he did was take on his more popular older brother, and the second thing he did was take on Murdoch.

    Whatever else is wrong with him, he’s not frit.

  4. To clarify my thoughts on the loyalty of A Campbell – none of the ‘blind faith’ nonsense put about by @Oldnat (it’s a bit naughty, but I couldn’t help wondering if his view was based on the experience of an SNP follower).

    What impresses me more in this regard is the way in which Campbell has allowed the terms of debate to move on, without interfering from the past. Few politicians seem to manage this. Those that do seem to be able to accept that succeeding generations face different situations, and for better or worse, have different solutions.

    New Labour was riven by minor philosophical divisions, elevated by personality into almost life threatening situations. This is the image of disloyalty I have in mind when I talk about Campbell.

  5. Further evidence of my “Campbell needs to get a grip” theory: he’s now tweeting or trying to tweet Dacre’s address.

    Not cool, not acceptable, and potentially damaging to our side, which hitherto had been handed all the cards.

  6. Looks like DM might have done some damage.

    Perhaps they will run a piece about DC’s father exploiting the hated lower classes , and Cons get the sympathy VI?

    …the next nocturnal UKPR pontifications would be interesting .

  7. @ANDYO

    “Too many 8% for LDs to be happy at the moment?”


    Frankly, they’re lucky to have 8%. If it weren’t for ABT tactical voting… And there’s a thing. If Labour look like polling well close to the election, could this have a disproportionately negative effect on LDs? Tactical voters thinking stuff it, they’re not getting this seat after all, ‘cos Labour are gonna win the election anyway. Dunno how much precedent there might be for this sort of thing…

  8. is it me or has the Tory Conference been rather boring?

  9. What Tory Conference?

  10. @ Chatterclass – “I have a theory that a number of swing voters who voted for Blair voted Conservative in the last election, disillusioned with ‘out of touch millionaires’ have now gone towards UKIP.”

    That may be true of some, I don’t know, but it doesn’t mean that *everyone* who voted for Blair but isn’t a diehard Labour voter has veered towards UKIP.

    These days my voting choices are largely determined by environmental issues, which seem to me the most serious issues facing us by a country mile. However, no party really foregrounds this stuff – the Greens claim to but instead pursue a watery dippy hippy agenda that has no chance of making a meaningful difference in the national arena. So I find myself perpetually choosing between not-all-that-lesser evils.

    I appreciate that most voters don’t share my priorities but we’re still allowed to hold different opinions, and to evolve those opinions over time, as our experience and circumstances evolve and change. That’s why I (and a growing number of people, if the recent articles I’ve read on this are correct) can’t subscribe to tribal politics.

    To return this to polling – if the pundits noting the erosion of party loyalties among voters are correct, then pollsters may find it increasingly difficult to predict elections because the proportion of people who might tick ‘Conservative’ in (say) December then vote otherwise in June is growing all the time. This trend may not be hugely significant yet, I don’t know, but in 10 years or so it might well be.

  11. @Wolf

    You obviously did not watch the education section yesterday. I have watched a good part of all 3 main party conferences, and this was the only part I thought would genuinly influence my voting intention…it was outstanding!

  12. @Colin
    “Looks like DM might have done some damage.
    Perhaps they will run a piece about DC’s father exploiting the hated lower classes , and Cons get the sympathy VI?
    …the next nocturnal UKPR pontifications would be interesting”

    Probably only temporary. The DM doesn’t represent the Tories. It represents the DM.

    ” Further evidence of my “Campbell needs to get a grip” theory: he’s now tweeting or trying to tweet Dacre’s address.
    Not cool, not acceptable, and potentially damaging to our side, which hitherto had been handed all the cards”.

    @Colin – You see?

  13. @Alec

    I’ve always had a sneaking suspicion that OldNat’s continued use of the “Authoritarian Follower” meme was a sure fire sign of being an authoritarian follower…

  14. @ Raskey

    Not clear – outstandingly bad or good?

  15. @Catmanjeff
    I make the five poll rolling average:
    Con 32.0
    Lab 40.6
    LD 9.0

    A Lab average of 40.6 is the highest we’ve seen since 17th April.

  16. RASKEY

    @”You obviously did not watch the education section yesterday. …it was outstanding!”

    It was-Gove’s guest speakers were terrific -the Youth Mentor, the USA Teaching Union chap, the Head from the Free SChool-and that incredibly self confident 14 year year old pupil.

  17. RAF

    @”@Colin – You see?”

    Afraid not ?

  18. @Colin

    .”…and that incredibly self confident 14 year year old pupil.”

    The next William Hague, perhaps?

    Talking of Hague, whatever happened to him??


    Any chance of a new thread on this latest YouGov poll showing a 10% Labour lead. It’s potentially a very interesting one and, if nothing else, it will give everyone an opportunity to stop discussing the bleedin’ Daily Mail.


    [Agreed and agreed – but busy doing actual work at the moment. As soon as I’m free! – AW]

  19. CB11

    @”Talking of Hague, whatever happened to him??”

    Yeah-his piece was very good-full of humour……..and Labour’s management of the Foreign Office.

    Great stuff as usual .

  20. Well clearly no Tory conference bounce, despite the very popular ‘make them work for their benefits’ policy.

    So it looks like if you want to move VI, you need a policy that addresses an issue high on the list of ‘affects you and your family’, rather than ‘issues facing the country’ or even a popular policy that is quite low on the issues list.

    The economy continues to top both issues lists (country, and you and your family), but as the pollsters have been drilling into the economy question over the last 2 weeks, we can see the Tories are leading on the economy – country type issue, but Labour are leading on the economy – affects you and your family type issues.

    And that is reflected in the double digit leads we are now starting to see.

    If the Tories want to come back, they need to start focusing on people’s finances, and reduce the emphasis on national finances.

    I must say I feared this conference would be more immigrant bashing, but I have been pleasantly surprised to date.

  21. Looks like the Ed is weak agenda from the summer is rather falling apart too.

    Vote of Thanks to the Daily Mail for putting that one to bed!

  22. We only have YouGov’s word for the big Lab lead at the moment plus middle of conference season. Populus and Comres not showing similar shifts- in fact they are showing the opposite.

    I think we need at least 2 weeks before drawing any conclusions.

    Lab should let the DM thing rest now. They have placed down a marker but I’m sure I vaguely recall big spats in the 1980’s between them and the Sun and that didn’t turn out well for them. Not because they would expect a Sun endorsement but just because it allowed the Sun to take a combatitive approach with them with only one winner.

  23. The DM spat with Ed Miliband has totally overshadowed the Tory conference and therefore any media coverage has been reduced.

    There seems to be a bit of a negative image issue with the Tories and the DM are not helping. If voters feel there is some relationship between the Tories within the government and the DM, particulary related to regulation, then this is not going to be helpful.

    Rather than a bounce for the Tories, I can see the Tories VI falling back a little and Labour regularly hitting 40% +.

  24. RIN
    Would that be the article by Benedict Brogan, political editor of the Daily Mail from 2005 to 2009?

  25. @RiN

    Brogan’s getting eviscerated for not even reading his own newspaper’s obit of the man he’s smearing.

    The Telegraph are trying every whatabouterist trick in the book at the moment to justify the Mail. Graeme Archer has just leapt aboard as well with a bunch of arguments that were discredited elsewhere 24 hours ago. I guess they have contracts to fulfil.

    It would be nice to see someone on the DT up and say ‘actually, this was out of order and there isn’t really a justification for it’, but it appears they’re now too partisan to manage it.

  26. Sorry, the DT bloggers, that is. The main paper, as Steve mentioned, made a point of republishing R Miliband’s obit.

  27. Richard,

    The polls are very variable at present, personally I take more notice of the ones with UKIP at a more realistic level. They won’t get 15% at a General Election, or anywhere near it.

    I see this election as wide open, I want to know more on what Labour is going to do on Public Finance, Education, Health, I want to see some big Cabinet Changes, to give some proper challenge to the government. On health I want more than a man well past his use by date warbling on about privatisation, on Education I want some sensible alternative with children and good teachers at heart, or for us to admit as I suspect Twigg does you are right on most of it but you can do this or this better. On Public Finance big pressure will be on, what will we do.

    Anybody who thinks this is in the bag is deluded and Miliband has much still to do. I am far from convinced of his handling of the Daily Mail, I’d rather he’d risen above it, make your feelings known but don’t sell more papers for them.

  28. @lefthampton –

    Before I saw other posters objections to your politics and spouse comparison, I’d already screenshot’ed’ it on my phone and shared it with two friends. It really struck a chord. Having spent 2013 both pondering my allegiance to my party and my activist role and having been dumped from my relationship – I found the ideas really interesting. I then found everyone’s objections interesting too – maybe we share the same personal issues? ;)

    Paul Dacre. I’m certainly not defendiing him – I don’t know enough about him nor really desire too. A quick look at his wiki page though and you can see that he’s apparently well known for not doing interviews as he detests the concept of celebrity editors – and I do respect this want to not become the news but stay meta too it. I think Campbell will certainly have known this and his repetition of ‘why is hel not on this programme?’ becomes a little more – well, Campbell-esque.

    Can we talk 2020? Who do we have in the leaders debates? Boris Johnson, Tim Farron/Julian Huppert and Burnum/Chaka/a Miliband/Cooper?

  29. @Ernie

    Like I said, you didn’t watch it, or you would know.


    “(And well-funded enough. I don’t think that either of the main two parties will have anything remotely comparable to the kind of wealth advantage that Obama had, so the same sort of tactics are unlikely to be applicable in a UK context. Again, thank goodness for that.)”


    Yes, hopefully we won’t see too much negative campaigning, though the press seem happy to fill that gap.

    Clearly funds are an issue for all the parties… Shapps was on Newsnight, ostensibly to answer concerns about falling membership, but he rather turned it into a recruitment drive – Go to this website to join the party, text this number to donate a pound!! – and he was focusing on the use of volunteers in micro-campaigns, single issue, to build local support, which sounds rather like what Labour have got Graf to train ’em up to do.

    Meanwhile, according to the Telegraph Tories are losing members substantially over things like SSM and HS2, affecting local associations’ funding…


    “This comment from the Health Secretary:
    But Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt challenged Ed Miliband to distance himself from his father’s views on capitalism.
    “What I would say is Ralph Miliband was no friend of the free market economy – he thought that was wrong – and I’ve never heard Ed Miliband say he supports the free market economy.
    “The important thing for voters is to know exactly where Ed Miliband stands on these fundamental issues about our society.”
    Since when does any politician need to “distance himself” from their parents view on anything?”


    The particularly bizarre thing about Hunt’s line on this – the idea that Miliband hasn’t “made his views clear” about supporting the free market, as I heard him say on the radio – is that only last week Miliband was proposing measures in unbundling energy to promote more of a free market.

  32. From Carfrew’s article on Tory local association membership:

    “The report of one group in Buckinghamshire simply states: ‘There is no money.'”

    OMG! I knew Liam Byrne was a closet Tory!

  33. @ Raf,

    @Colin – You see?

    I’m afraid I’m not following you either.

  34. I see in the FT that lenders are holding back in signing up to Help To Buy.

    I’m not sure that’s going to make them more popular with the voters. This might be a nice, easy fight for the Tories to pick.

  35. I have to ask, how did you all get those lovely backgrounds on your posts for whichever party you support?

  36. Tom

    Go to the WordPress dashboard, find extended profile, chose party


    “Try Alto Golf just west of Portimao, which I played a few years back and enjoyed. Good facilities without being pretentious and only half a mile or so from sandy cliff-backed beaches.”


    Thanks muchly Phil. Sounds good… This retirement thing is looking up…

  38. @Chris Riley
    The banks and building societies might in turn respond by explaining why they remain wary of paying a fee to government in order to guarantee advances of 95% of valuations to people who can only “afford” them because of rock bottom interest rates in the midst of an overvalued housing market.

    As with HS2, the debate on Help to Buy in 2015 will be around priorities. The Conservatives will I think have a hard job countering the (surely inevitable) argument from Labour that what is left of the £12bn available to guarantee the banks’ losses under Help to Buy could not be better allocated to support the construction of new affordable social housing.

  39. @Wolf – “is it me or has the Tory Conference been rather boring?”

    I think there is a point here, although we need to await DC’s speech today.

    I wasn’t following things much last week at all, but Labour regularly seemed to catch headlines with the fairly eye catching announcements. I recall that there were some comments on here the day before Lab conference about how the presentation seemed hurried and muddled, but I disagreed then, as I still do. I think Labour managed a series of specific announcements that generally got them favourable coverage.

    Both the Lib Dem and Tory conferences have also made announcements, but to date, none of these seem to have broken through in quite the same way. Most of them are retimings of already expected measures, although the 7 day GP announcement is welcome and new, although didn’t get much coverage.

    I get the feeling that Labour has had quite a good conference overall. I guess the measure of this must be the narrative before and after. The carp is dead, long live the shark. Certainly Labour seems to have had the biggest turn around so far.

  40. David Cameron’s speech:
    The BBC’s Nick Robinson says there are no new policies in the speech. Instead it’s a rhetorical assault on Labour, he says.

  41. @Zack Polanski

    “Paul Dacre. I’m certainly not defendiing him – I don’t know enough about him nor really desire too. A quick look at his wiki page though and you can see that he’s apparently well known for not doing interviews as he detests the concept of celebrity editors – and I do respect this want to not become the news but stay meta too it. I think Campbell will certainly have known this and his repetition of ‘why is hel not on this programme?’ becomes a little more – well, Campbell-esque.”

    Well that’s all right then. So, Paul Dacre can say what he likes in his newspaper but doesn’t have to defend his views anywhere else because he doesn’t want to be a celebrity!


  42. RiN

    Benedict Brogan’s piece in the DT is that worst kind of disinformation: the kind that presents wrong facts well crafed in the assurance that they would be difficult to check. He is, however, not helped by his poor grasp of the situation in 1989. According to Brogan: “Nearly 25 years have passed since Mikhail Gorbachev threw in the towel and gave up on the USSR’s dreams of Soviet world domination.”
    Gorbachev’s aims at that time were set out in his instructions to the Plenum of the Soviet Communist Party in Spring 1989, reintroducing a mixed-market system and private ownership of land and of companies and production systems, in almost all sectors of the Soviet economy. He offered Devo + to Brunskilda, the Lithuanian leader later in the year: economic and internal political independence in a market union with Russia and other republics, but one which retained the Soviet sovereignty – which the Lithuanians rejected, counting on the Soviet economy to collapse and other Republics to follow the Lithuanian lead.
    Far from aiming for world domination, Gorbachev was seeking to restore a privatized market in agriculture and sought support for the process from the UK and the EU. The support was in place within a year of his defeat to Yelstin (who by comparison was an economic oaf) in the form of EU TACIS and PHARE (and in the case of Lithuania, UK cooperation in the setting up and training of a Lithuanian Agricultural Advisory Service at Bicton College) and at Kaunas.
    Brogan’s rewriting of history takes his fictional account of the political reality of the Soviet Union at that time as his starting point, for what is in many ways a classic propagandist’s narrative/ I summarise it, in all his gory and rhetorical detail, below:
    “the bad guys were out to do us in. At its most extreme, the Cold War was about fear, about nuclear brinkmanship, fallout shelters, cruise missiles, five minutes to midnight and The Day After.
    Ralph Miliband. ……. back then……. was one of the bad guys.
    But the key point surely is that Marxism hated – hates – Britain. It hates our institutions, our economic model, our democracy, our independent media and our freedoms. Ralph Miliband, however well intentioned, was on the side of those who wanted to turn Britain into something dreadful.”

    Thank God we’ve had Star Wars to get an idea of what the Dark Side are really after. Come on, Benedict, pull your socks up – as Ed said, you can do better than this.

  43. The Daily Mail – wasn’t Lord Salisbury who described the Mail as the newspaper produced by office boys for office boys.

    Then someone else Lloyd George called it the Newspaper for people who can read but cannot think.

    Today it has the become the Nasty Paper that supports the Nasy Party?

  44. @Phil

    Notwithstanding the potential pros and cons of Help To Buy, it remains broadly popular with the electorate and there may be votes for the Tories in picking a symbolic fight with banks – which are, of course, rivals with the energy companies in the hotly-contested battle to be most unpopular with voters.

  45. @Alec

    Conservative conferences in this term have tended to be worthy but rather dull, which is why a lot of members don’t go.

    There was a chance something might budge VI, but I don’t see it likely now. Boris behaved himself, Osborne didn’t say anything exciting and the PM is saying all the things expected of him. It’s the unexpected that changes VI.

  46. @John Murphy

    Was that last line a typo or an accusation?

  47. Cameron pretty lack lustre, brought his wife into it as well, nothing bold, nothing new. I’m not convinced he is 100% up for the fight.

    Certainly Miliband shows more passion and desire that might help his polling.

  48. First of all welcome to Zack. I should explain to regulars here that Zack is actually related to me. However, it is quite unusual for us to agree about much related to politics. But welcome to you anyway, Zack. Maybe you’ve posted here before, but I hadn’t spotted it if so.
    I should have thought that, privately, the Tory high command must be absolutely livid about the Daily Mail, which has forced them to express sympathy for Ed Miliband (and by implication his brother David as well) during their own conference, and stolen the limelight from them. For Labour to have retained a 10% lead well into their conference will surely be a concern. It now remains to be seen whether Cameron can rescue something from this situation, or whether Labour will end up, contrary surely to most people’s expectation, as the net winners of the conference season.

  49. John Murphy,

    I listened to Hunt and your interpretation of his comments is not a true and fair view.

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