YouGov’s weekly results for the Sunday Times are out here. Topline figures are CON 33%, LAB 39%, LDEM 9%, UKIP 12%.
The poll started with an interesting question on the economy – directly addressing the queries you sometimes see on whether the GDP figures are actually reflected in ordinary’s people’s experience. 34% of people think the economy is now growing again across Britain as a whole, 41% do not. Asked about their own local area though, 22% think the economy is growing, 55% do not – people in London and the south are more likely to see the economy as growing, the north and Scotland less so. (Note more than half of the fieldwork would have been completed before the new GDP figures came out, so they won’t yet reflect that). You can look at this a pessimistic or optimistic way (or vice-versa, depending on one’s preferred outcome to the election) – one that the government isn’t benefiting from economic growth because many people aren’t feeling it in their own areas, the other that given many people don’t think the economy is growing yet, there’s plenty more potential upside for the government if/when they do.
Most of the poll deal with questions about energy prices. On the cost of living Labour have a lead, but only a tiny one – 26% trust Labour more, 24% the Conservatives. Solid majorities support all the energy price proposals made over the last few days, 72% support Miliband’s price freeze, 73% Major’s windfall tax, 64% Cameron’s reduction in green taxes. Asked to choose just ONE of them though the price freeze is the most popular, picked by 39% to the green tax reduction’s 28% and the windfall tax on 23%.
Looking more specifically at green taxes, only 15% of people support the continuation of the green levy on energy bills. 39% would rather the spending was funded directly from generation taxation, 34% would rather the money was not spent at all. In a forced choice question 52% would rather the government acted to cut bills, even if it mean less action was taken to cut CO2 emissions and protect the environment.
Looking to future energy needs the parties are exactly matched, 22% would trust the Tories more, 22% Labour more. On the principle of the new nuclear power station 49% support the deal, 30% are opposed. There are more concerns about the details – 55% think it’s unacceptable for French and Chinese companies to be involved, 49% think it is unacceptable for the government to promise to pay a minimum price for the electricity generated.
There were also a couple of questions on drug legalisation. 47% of people would support the decriminalisation (25%) or full legalisation (22%) or “soft” drugs like cannabis, 45% would prefer their sale and possession to remain a criminal offence. There is far less support for softening restrictions on harder drugs, 71% think that drugs like heroin and crack should remain illegal.
Looking at the rest of the Sunday papers, there is also a Survation poll” in the Sunday Times which has topline figures of CON 29%, LAB 35%, LDEM 12%, UKIP 17%, and a Panelbase poll in the Herald (but commissioned by Wings over Scotland) which has referendum voting intentions of YES 35%, NO 43%, Undecided 20%. This is broadly typical of Panelbase – with the exception of a single poll in Jan 2013 and the SNP commissioned poll with leading questions, they’ve been consistently showing a lead of between 8-10 points since summer 2012.