This morning’s YouGov poll for the Sun had topline figures of CON 32%, LAB 39%, LDEM 11%, UKIP 12%. The regular tracker on today’s poll was best party on issues, which showed the parties’ normal strengths and weaknesses – Labour lead the Conservatives on the NHS (by 12 points), education (by 4 points) and unemployment (by 4 points), the Conservatives were ahead on immigration (by 11 points), law and order (by 10 points) and the economy in general (by 5 points). The two parties were virtually neck-and-neck on Europe (Conservatives 19%, Labour 20%) – and yes, that is typical. I sometimes see the assumption out there that Europe is a strong issue for the Conservatives or a weakness for Labour, it is really not the case.

Meanwhile the twice weekly poll for Populus, out yesterday, had topline figures of CON 32%, LAB 41%, LDEM 10%, UKIP 9%. Full tabs are here.

347 Responses to “Latest YouGov and Populus polls”

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  1. RnD
    It’s late and my predictive text was leading me astray.
    Punctilious puppoes.
    As for my substantive point waddya think of that?

  2. Well nurgatory has a nice sound and at this time of night we have Cammo setting presidents too. I prefer my presidents runny in the middle.

    On the substantive point, I think short term it (mud) will stick to a minor degree and whether it develops or gets eaten up by those presidents will depend on events, dear boy.

    Talking of which, down here in the smoke the tragic events around cycling are putting Boris under some heat and his unlikely cycling czar Gilligan appears to have been returned to the racks after his rather aggressive, sneering response a few days ago.

  3. ewen

    “As for my substantive point waddya think of that?”

    Forgotten what it was but I expect it was great.

  4. Thanks.
    I do hope your Dad’s not suffering too much gyp

  5. Mark Pack on Ashcroft response

    “for Liberal Democrats, polling stretching over decades* shows that naming people rather than just the parties in a voting intention question makes a huge difference.”

    So I think that is a challenge to Lord Ashcroft. Lets get a public marginal poll where we name people compared to where we name the party to settle the argument?

  6. It is if course deeply surprising that someone involved in the banking industry should use cocaine. Though it will probably only really alienate Co-op members if it turns out not have been Fairtrade.

    But the reality is that Cameron is playing a slightly dangerous game here. Seeming to have a go at one lot of bankers while still ignoring the misdeeds of other may raise questions and the appearance of collusion. And discussion of drug use may lead to revived accusations closer to home (see the latest Steve Bell cartoon). The enquiry also sets a precedent that may give cause for regret, because even under this administration demands for enquiries into other things will be made that will be harder and less plausible to refuse.

    It’s the sort of thing than may well cheer up the more rabid partisans, but to the less committed it could just appear like more silly Westminster games and the cries of “You said”, “No, you said” have already started. There’s no telling where the mud may end up and bankers and cocaine are probably more associated with one Party more than others.

    The “Get rid of the green cra*p” thing[1] seems an even worse misjudgement. it will only directly alienate a small number of voters but also cause much more tension with the Lib Dems. Even worse it won’t impress those whom it is aimed at – all they will just see it as more proof of Cameron’s insincerity.

    There is a danger with the perceptions of the wider public as well. Green issues may not be high on people’s priorities but they like to see them there somewhere. In part this is because they may mean different things to different people as Neil A identified, but it also reflects a basic ambivalence towards the topic “Make me Green Lord, but not yet”. So being for Green policies may not gain votes, but turning against may lose them.

    [1] Assuming it’s actually true and Rupert Murdoch didn’t just show it to the reporter in a dream (thanks Spearmint, I’m still smiling). But even that would show how flabby and undisciplined Conservative media management has become – we saw similar things in the run-up to the Syria vote. I suppose if most of the media is going to do what you want without even being asked, then you can afford to be lax.

  7. Ewen

    Hard to tell as moans a lot at the best of times – thanks anyway.

    He is great though!

  8. Richard

    Actually Mark Pack is being a bit unfair about Ashcroft and his polling. In August he asked two questions. First the standard If there was a general election tomorrow which party would you vote for? and then Thinking specifically about your own constituency and the candidates who are likely to stand there, which partys[sic] candidate do you think you will vote for in your own constituency at the next general election?. so while specific names weren’t given, people were nudged towards them.

    Now any second question seems to act as a squeeze in these situations, so the more detailed one mainly brought in votes from DKs etc. In 40 Con-Lab marginals there was very little difference in the end with a 42-27 lead for Labour being changed to a 43-28 one[1].

    While Conservatives did appear to gain some voters, presumably from UKIP, Labour actually gained more than enough to match them from undecideds etc and maybe also even UKIP. Strangely the Lib Dems put on almost as many new voters as Labour, though it only moved them from 7% to 9%. And though UKIP did drop from 14% to 11%, you suspect that the Tories would hope for more. As I keep boring you with, the UKIP vote is more solid than people think.

    So there doesn’t seem to be that fabled incumbency bonus in these seats. Now it has to be pointed out that these will be seats that the Conservatives won from Labour in 2010, so the MP will be new by definition and not had much time to build up loyalty, but it seems unlikely that inserting the name of the candidates in the second question would help to the extent that Hodges reports. Indeed the newness of the MP would rather suggest the effect should be smaller than normal. If anything the effect is very slightly negative, but that is probably other technical factors than revulsion at the MP. However it’s certainly not going to be enough to save them.

    Mark Pack is right however about there being a different effect in Con-Lib marginals – at least Ashcroft’s polling shows it. But that will keep for later.

    [1] These are the figures before weighting to turnout, but that made surprisingly little difference just upping the Conservatives to 29% and knocking a point off the Lib Dems.

  9. Predictive text and medication don’t go together, (I was going to say drugs but people may have come to the wrong conclusion then)… precedents not presidents in previous post

    teach me….smiles

  10. Latest YouGov / The Sun results 20th November – Con 32%, Lab 40%, LD 9%, UKIP 12%; APP -28

    Five poll rolling average:

    Con 32.6
    Lab 39.2
    LD 10
    UKIP 12

    Lab Lead 6.6

    Looks like the polldrums – Labour lead of about 7.

  11. @Roger Mexico

    If the Tories say they’re actually 2 up in those seats, it would indicate a swing of only about 0.5%, compared to the almost 9% Ashcroft found.

    I think we can quite safely dismiss this out of hand.

  12. @Neil A – “Isn’t part of the problem with the “green” agenda that it is something of a moveable feast?”

    I think this is correct up to a point, but mainly on the none green side. Actual greens tend to be pretty clear about issues they support, although of course there are some deviations.

    I think what your point really illustrates is that mainstream parties try to badge things as being green, in order to garner support.

  13. Alec
    You and Neil A, combined, expressed eloquently what I would have have commented had I been around. A real Green (or someone like me who has lived with them on council committee and by the way some of whom actually go through life as Lib Dem or Labour, a real green Con councillor is a rare beast) is crystal clear about the issues, even if he or she feels unable to live out the principles in daily life. (Get behind me S*tan).

    The person who temporarily plays out the issues (no partisan accusations from me) actually has not got a real clue as to what the issues are.

  14. @Bill Patrick

    The Lib-Lab pact came about during a Parliament because Callaghan’s majority was being eroded, it probably suited the Liberals not to have an election at that time and was a fairly limited no no-confidence deal. According to Healey the Libs remained fairly obstructive throughout the full 18 months. Callaghan should have gone to the country when it ended… he might even have won a ’78 election.

    Governments should only really go to the country (with a referendum) when they are sure to get the result they recommend. Possibly Clegg and Huhne thought they had assurance that Cameron would remain above the fray on AV, but that still would have fallen short of a recommendation. Cameron and Osborne didn’t get their new boundraries either in the end, though Clegg belatedly tied that to his failed Lords reform rather than AV.

    Were Cameron to recommend a renegotiated EU membership in 2017 it might be a different matter. He can’t rely on the Tory press screaming in his support on the morning of the vote, nor can he count on the full support of his cabinet or party… and in the first place he needs support from all his EU partners for there to be any renegotiation.

  15. Roger M
    As I understand it, Ashcroft’s poll exists and tables of it have been published. The one you to which are drawing comparisons is a newspaper rumour.

    Is it worth the discussion?

  16. Interesting your comments about Europe not being an issue for either Labour or Conservative as far as strength or weakness as compared between the two parties, although what the poll actually shows is best party on issues i.e. best party on Europe. Bearing in mind that historically the public are split 50/50 on Europe – I might be overstating my case a bit there! – and the Europeans debate is finely balanced between the parties and also within the parties, its not surprising what party people think is best on Europe i.e. they are also split 50/50. Personally I would think the European issue makes little difference to the election result as any future change on the European question would have to be settled by referendum

    “It is if course deeply surprising that someone involved in the banking industry should use cocaine.”

    Leaving aside the former Chair of the Co-Op Bank for a moment, from my experience of the city from the late 1980’s until at least 2005 – including banking services – it was usual to find widespread social use of cocaine – almost as commonplace as champagne – and not only amongst ‘traders’.

    As for the rest – here I feel like in the case of Cardinal O’Brien – the personal tragedy makes a compelling soap story for the Media to grandstand but the ethical morality of the Media hardly places them in a position to be casting any stones….

  18. Quite an interesting article about Obama’s campaign methods of micro targeting on the YouGov main site.

    One key difference with the UK that it overlooks, however, is that we have more than two parties in the running for votes in almost every election. Stuffing lots of untargeted leaflets through just about everyone’s door in a UK context is still important (as opposed to targeting a small % of voters) because of the need to demonstrate that your party is taking things seriously and feels that it is in contention. A visible presence is key to that so high volumes of leaflets and posters matter. Otherwise the “wasted vote” argument takes hold and your party can be subject to a squeeze by the two parties perceived to be most in contention.

  19. This morning’s YouGov:
    Lab % still resilient despite all the flak over the Coop.
    And despite a heavy upweighting (from 138 to 222) of another 18-24 sample that has Con ahead.

  20. I dont think the co-op thing will do any serious damage to labour. Its not like ed personally approved his appointment. I would guess the public will file the story in the ‘dodgey banker’ file rather than ‘labour sleeze one’.
    Looks a bit desperate form Cameron – but also an indication of how dirty things are likely to get between now and 2015.

  21. @Reggieside

    I think the Co-Op thing could backfire. Up here in the NW the Co-Op is still very well-regarded and people are getting annoyed with the Tories trashing the group in order to score a few political points. This is a staunchly Tory area but steeped in Co-Op tradition and local Tory activists is already very unhappy with some of the noises, especially re: schools, health and regional policy, coming out of Westminster.

    Were I Mark Hoban, I’d be very nervous. He looks like a very prime target for ‘friendly’ fire.

  22. Coop thing will not affect things directly in the polls at all imo.

    The Government will hope that it makes it harder for EM to focus on certain banking/hedge fund type issues and in that sense it might have a marginal impact but I think very marginal.

  23. @Phil Haines

    I’ve had some detailed conversations with some of the senior people who worked on the Obama campaign, and it’s a pretty accurate picture of what went on (although there is a lot more in the detail!).

    Of course UK parties can have quite good information about the voting histories and demographics of individuals from our electoral rolls and voting rolls. What we miss, though, is the information around registered voter status and the extensive direct call history they have in the US.

    I don’t think that our multi-party system has a significant impact, although the smaller size of our constituencies vs states, and the greater difficulty in estimating which seats are truly marginal might.

  24. The coop issue won’t affect vi at all.As we approach 2015 more people will have less money in their pockets,a feeling of hopeless stagnation sets in,the cons wheel out old Francis Maude.Same old pattern.

  25. Can’t see the Co-Op affecting voting intention long term- maybe a bit in the short term as it would with any issue that gives the press an opportunity to have a go at Miliband (I had only posted the other day they seemed to have gone quiet on him recently!).

    I am cross though. I put most of my stuff the Co-Op way- banking, energy and some shopping (especially as they are the only cheapish supermarket with any solid animal testing policy- even more solid than Body Shop). Never felt the desire to get involved as a member and never followed them that closely just generally in favour of Co-Operatives without shareholders. So I feel pretty let down with the bank especially as there are no similar alternatives that pay market rates, although building societies are a good second best depending on what your main issue is..

    It’s actually very difficult to judge the Co-Op and how well they do. Prices in their supermarkets are more than the big 4/5 but then they are working in a different marketplace with smaller shops in the main so it’s maybe unfair to say they should be cheaper. Bank has always had better customer service than most and very rarely kept on call waiting. Energy seems to have been good, considering they are aiming for 50% green electricity, but always difficult to work out energy prices anyway.

    Just not sure if it comes down to one silly decision to buy Brittannia the same way as Lloyds went down because of buying a dodgy bank or whether the problems were deeper than that. If it was Brittannia it seems odd it didn’t surface at the same time as Lloyds did, although I guess if they were paying out 12% on some bonds that took it’s hit over time.

    Oh well- just got my letter of no dividend this year apart from their energy company which might be less integrated into the Co-Op Group than the other bits.

  26. So, just what will any new Labour Government do to ‘put more money in peoples pockets’ – i’m puzzled how they do that without upsetting the recovery and starting to borrow big time again!

  27. The Southern Co-Op has gone into partnership with Starbucks and my formerly closest Co-Op has now closed and re-opened as a coffee shop. Very odd.

  28. @ SHEVII

    “Just not sure if it comes down to one silly decision to buy Brittannia the same way as Lloyds went down because of buying a dodgy bank or whether the problems were deeper than that.”

    I think it was deeper than that and I think Nils Pratley puts his finger on it in this Grauniad piece:

    He says:

    “The main point the Co-op should now recognise is that management by committee – or rather, dozens of committees – rarely serves an organisation well. In the Co-op’s case, the sprawl of area and regional committees seems to have bred a culture of cliques and cronyism. At the top of this structure sits a group board consisting of 20 non-executive directors, 15 elected from the regional boards and five appointed by independent co-operative societies.

    There are at least three practical faults with such a main board. First, 20 directors is too many to be effective. Second, if the only way onto the board is by climbing the Co-op’s greasy pole, the culture is bound to be inward-looking and lack checks and balances. Third, a board consisting solely of non-executives will tend to lack front-line expertise; Flowers, a small-time Labour councillor dispatched to chair the bank in 2010 even though he had no senior banking experience, was the crowning example.

    A conventional board containing both executives and non-executives would be a useful way for the Co-op to start to reform. And, crucially, the non-execs should include some independent outsiders. A useful template could be the board of John Lewis – another democratic organisation, but one which has always stressed the need to remain commercially competitive. John Lewis has a chairman who appoints five executive directors; another five are elected by the partners; and there are three non-executives from outside. It seems to work well.”

    Having worked with various board structures in for profit, non-profit, and charity structures, the existing Coop board sounds like a recipe for disaster whilst the JL one sounds about ideal.

  29. sine

    “So, just what will any new Labour Government do to ‘put more money in peoples pockets’ – i’m puzzled how they do that without upsetting the recovery and starting to borrow big time again!”

    Not the purpose of this site to debate though, is it?

  30. @ Alec

    I understand what you say, but Mrs A manages 60 miles a day on her own on our remote (and hilly) roads when she’s minded to, and that’s just for pleasure. I do sense there is a degree of retreating from life sometimes in the face of perceived risk.
    I think Mrs A probably travels by different routes & folk don’t know where she’ll be at a given time. That’s not the case when you are travelling to/ from work regularly. I expect the point about retreating from life in the face of risk was how Susie Lamplugh saw it. Her parents have an organisation named after her with a website.

    @ Ozwald, your niece might want to read the safety tips on travel & being a lone worker.

  31. “@ Sine Nomine

    So, just what will any new Labour Government do to ‘put more money in peoples pockets’ – i’m puzzled how they do that without upsetting the recovery and starting to borrow big time again! ”

    That is a good question, which will apply to any party in government after May 2015.

    My thoughts are this.

    Tories would continue pretty much as they currently are. They will try to shrink the state further, by moving people from the public payroll to the private sector. They will try to reduce taxes and costs to business, in the hope that business will employ more people, increase wage rates. They will hope to gain more tax income from greater business and employment. As time goes on there would then be possibilites of reducing income tax.

    Labour would not look to shrink the state as much, but they will look to make savings, perhaps with some changes to government departments. They will look to help local authorities borrow money, to invest in local projects, like building social housing. They will look at how the regions of the UK can play a greater role in the recovery, so it is just the south east of England. Perhaps regional development agencies working with local authorities. So much more state intervention by Labour, helping to stimulate employment and therefore more money in peoples pockets as a result. Labour may still go a for a temporary VAT cut to 17.5%. Labour will also be tempted to introduce a living wage or at least increase the minimum wage level. There could well be more market interventions, other than the energy price freeze. Perhaps rail fare increases may be capped to inflation.

    So it really goes back to the same choice. Tories who believe in business driving the economy and them sharing their success with employees, with little state intervention. Or Labour who believe that government has to be far more actively involved and cannot leave it to business, many of whom are not totally loyal to the UK. Labour will have to borrow more, if they want to bring forward such things as infrastructure projects.

    Personally, I think that government has got to be actively involved in working with business to make the UK the best place to do business. We cannot compete with the Irish for example who have a corporation tax rate of 12.5%, but we can perhaps offer them other incentives, if they invest in the UK. A UK government will need to be able to borrow money to help with projects, if there is a possible net gain from these.

  32. Cycling etc.

    I am outraged by a world in which women, especially younger ones, feel even slightly vulnerable.

    I like being a bloke but it also comes with a sense of shame for my gender.

  33. @ GuyMonde

    John Lewis has a chairman who appoints five executive directors; another five are elected by the partners; and there are three non-executives from outside.
    Did I miss how the John Lewis Chairperson is selected, or isn’t that in the article?

  34. R Huckle – thank you for a very sensible reply that resisted the temptation to get into an argument. I expect it may well be a factor at an election as to which party can best convince people they’ll be able to run the economy well and/or put more money in people’s pockets, but let’s please NOT go the route of debating the actual answer.

  35. As parts of the press are also getting excited about this amusing ‘Green crap’ remark an unattributed source claims Cameron may have made, I think it’s worth mentioning that this won’t shift VI either.

  36. “@Anthony Wells

    R Huckle – thank you for a very sensible reply but let’s please NOT go the route of debating the actual answer.”

    It is an impossible debate to have anyway, as nobody can predict with any certainty, the investment decsions that will be made by business. Therefore if anyone knows the answer as to what political levers will affect business and money in peoples pockets, they should let me know the lottery numbers, so I can buy a ticket.

  37. @ Amber

    Not in the article but all here if you can be bothered…

    It seems (Clause 39 (v) (ix)) that the Chairman nominates his own successor but that needs to be approved by the board and also (Clause 10) that the partners can call for him to be removed – ie the workers can sack the boss.

    I’ll refrain from commenting on whether any genders may have been harmed by sexist language used in the making of this Constitution

  38. @Amber
    Thank you for the link, very useful.

  39. @ Paul

    I like being a bloke but it also comes with a sense of shame for my gender.
    If you’re not part of the problem, you are part of the solution & ought not to feel ashamed!

    I am interested in the political decisions which are made which affect women’s safety (& I hope you would agree with me).

    Green – & mean (cost cutting) councils are reducing street lighting. This makes things more risky for motorists, cyclists & pedestrians alike. It makes women feel more vulnerable; they ought to consider this in their decision making.

    And I object to benefit sanctions against young women who do not feel confident that they can “get on their bikes” to find work because their personal safety would be put at risk. Mrs A feels confident cycling miles on her own; as does my 70 year old mother (even when abroad on holiday) but nobody is forcing them to do it when they don’t feel safe.

  40. AW
    I clicked on “Report comment” under Sine Nomine’s post at 11.24 am but nothing seems to have happened. Does one need to be signed in to report a comment?

  41. @ Guy Monde

    I’ll refrain from commenting on whether any genders may have been harmed by sexist language used in the making of this Constitution

    Thank you, I think that JL’s approach is entirely reasonable & look forward to the incumbent recommending a chairwoman to replace him when the time comes – even if it’s just to see whether he’ll be accused of being unconstitutional. ;-)

  42. “@ Mike N

    I clicked on “Report comment” under Sine Nomine’s post at 11.24 am but nothing seems to have happened. Does one need to be signed in to report a comment?”

    I think Anythony has left it on here, as he commented on my post, that he did not want a debate on the pros/cons of Labour v Tory policies. Well not if it has nothing to do with current polling.

  43. @ Billy Bob

    “Monetarist/free market ideology…….would probably have been implemented more enthusiatically had Reginald Maudling won the1965 leadership contest.”

    I don’t think that’s quite true. I have to confess that Reggie M was a close friend of my late father (they were in the same class at Merchant Taylor’s and went up to Oxford together) and whilst he liked clever new intellectual ideas (like monetarism) I know from listening to his chatter amongst friends, when I was a boy, that he was completely wedded to the post war consensus in reality.

    @MrNameless, Howard & RosieandDaisie

    Wilst I was a great fan at the time of Heath-ite policies “in practice” (I liked, and would like again, a planned economy based on price and wage controls as it demonstartes a true “we are all in this together” – which is probably why I was a GLYC left-of-centre Young Conservative then, and a left of Labour supporter now!!) I was personally on the recieving end of his ability to be un-necessarily rude and nasty. I was working as a PA to Patrick Cormack MP at the time, but one evening was at a St Pancras South & Holborn Conservative Assn reception for Ted in my role as local YC Chair for the neighbouring constituency. I was introduced to Ted in a long line of people by Peter Carrington, I shook his hand as pleased as punch, when suddenly Ted’s face turned angry and he shouted at me in front of all those people that “I should get my boss to behave himself” – I was embarrassed and flabberghasted. Apparently Patrick had upset Ted over opposition on some issue in the House – Patrick complained to Ted, and recieved an apology, that he had been so rude and hostile to me quite unfairly in fornt of so many people. At the time I was just a “promising young thing aged 17” and unimportant, but this behaviour was apparently not untypicial of Ted’s inappropriate behaviour, irritability, and inability to control his temper.

    So, I adored his policies – but disliked the man. Later on in life I was introduced to Maggie in a non-political social situation – she was utterly charming – but I loathed her policies!!!

    Thus Owen Jones is right IMO when he writes that politics should be about policies, not personalities!

  44. R Huckle

    Thanks. I saw AW’s comment but my click on Report Comment occurred before you and the dogs posted replies.

  45. @ Mike N

    The report comment works because I have reported one comment which was soon removed. It isn’t automatic or people could just report ones they didn’t like rather than ones which deserve moderating.

    I think Anthony reviews the reported comment which he originally thought was marginal but allowable &, if he agrees that it isn’t really aligned with the comments policy, he manually moderates it.

  46. MIKEN

    I had the same experience a while back.

    I asked the same question as you, and in the absence of a reply, have assumed that my perception of UKPR Policy compliant content & tone is not shared by it’s owner.

  47. Poor Mr Flowers. Had he been a proper banker, like the CEOs of HBSC, RBS, Lloyds, JPM & Barclays, he could’ve better disguised the bank’s real position, presided over mis-selling, fixed inter-bank rates, ‘laundered’ money & might (if he was a really good’un) have collapsed the bank to the point where it needed a huge bailout rather than a relatively modest restructuring.

  48. @Tony Dean

    You are quite right. Reggie Maudling apparently drafted a speech for Winston Churchill accepting elements of Labour’s public ownership. Churchill said “I don’t believe a word of it”, but read the speech anyway.

    So I jumped to a lazy conclusion, because he was more on the hang ’em side of Tory party compared to Heath, it was Powell and others who were the free marketeers at that time.

    Maudling’s best chance of becoming Conservative leader was probably in 1963, but he was considered too young at 46. Here he is in debating Foot, Powell and (a similar sounding) Jenkins with Robin Day:

    Btw, there really is little love lost between Martha Kearney and Ed Balls, but one of his better performances today on [email protected]

  49. “Poor Mr Flowers” and the poor lamb had to struggle by on £132K (from the Co-op anyway) which in Boris Johnson language is a great deal less than peanuts. Grape pips perhaps?

  50. ed balls sounded very unhappy about the whole co-op thing – sounds very much like a bit of desperate smear campaign as the links to him and ed sound pretty tenuous.
    The public dont follow the details of complex ‘scandals’ this – so the effect will probably be ‘(another) dodgey banker – links with labour – they’re all at it’.
    So good for raising public cynicism – wont shift VI.

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