The daily YouGov poll for the Sun tonight has topline figures of CON 36%, LAB 38%, LDEM 8%, UKIP 11%. The two point Labour lead is the lowest that YouGov have shown since October, and 36% is the highest they’ve shown since October. Usual caveats of course apply – it could be a further narrowing of Labour’s lead, or could just be normal margin of error. It does, however, underline the narrowing of the Labour lead that we saw in YouGov’s daily polling last week.

Meanwhile, as if to illustrate how much of the daily back and forth of polls is just random variation, this morning’s twice-weekly poll from Populus shows movement in the other direction. Topline figures there are back to CON 33%, LAB 40%, LDEM 13%, UKIP 8%. Tabs are here.

Finally there is another batch of UKIP donor Alan Bown’s Survation constituency polls, showing high levels of UKIP support in most of the seats selected – even compared to Survation’s national polls, which tend to show the highest levels of UKIP support to begin with. All four constituencies surveyed have much higher Con=>Lab swings than national polls imply, to a extent that looks somewhat doubtful to me. Swings at general elections aren’t uniform… but it’s a fair guide, parties perform a little better in one seat, a little worse in another seat, but if you’ve got a series of polls showing swings that are *all* substantially better than the national average, almost regardless of marginality, who holds the seat, etc, something’s not right. Somewhere or other they need to average out.

These seats where presumably selected as ones where they thought UKIP were doing particularly well, so perhaps that’s the reason – where UKIP are doing particularly well it results in a bigger swing (in which case they would by definition not be typical of other seats – so do be careful of extrapolation) but I’m dubious about constituency polling so far from the national picture, especially without political weighting. We shall see.

The most interesting thing I actually found there was the difference between the increase in the UKIP vote in the three coastal towns polled (up 23, 20 and 25 points) and in Crewe and Nantwich where it was up only 8. Now, leaving aside the prompting and the weighting and whether it’s a good measure of the actual level of UKIP support, all four were done on the same basis so should be comparable to each other. One interesting question about UKIP support at the next election is how uniform it will be – UKIP got comparative few council seats in 2013 for the level of support they achieved because it was spread so evenly, they just ended up coming second a lot. If their support in 2015 is the same they would struggle to translate support into any actual MPs. In terms of winning seats it’s much better to have areas of strength and weakness. Seaside towns were some of their better areas in the 2013 locals, and the contrast here between Crewe & Nantwich and the seaside towns suggests their support may be clumpier than thought… but again, don’t read too many conclusions into that single poll.

115 Responses to “YouGov/Sun – CON 36, LAB 38, LD 8, UKIP 11”

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  1. First! ( Cheers for releasing the post AW. – Folks…see your compass in previous thread. If I re-post, it will get locked in moderation anyway)


    Sorry Lefty…you posted after I did the thingy. Your dot would be just to the left of Shevii’s dot when the post gets unmoderated.

  2. ukip plus LD less than 20%

    That is unusual is it?

    [Easier to ask than look]

  3. 30-poll average of 21.5 for UKIP + Lib.

  4. We have gone from Polldrums to polls for everyone. Just thrown numbers 1 to 10 in the air and pick out a Labour lead you like ;-)

  5. Economic Left/Right: -5.75
    Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -6.05

  6. Thanks Statser

    Villa-Boas has become a very rich man by being sacked by two London clubs – somewhere in excess of ten million quid heading out of the English game.

    Bizarre in the extreme.

  7. “30-poll average of 21.5 for UKIP + Lib.”

    Though not a lot it has to go somewhere else and could explain a 3% Tory rise.

  8. I know the compass questionnaire is rather crude, but it’s very interesting to see how most of the Labour supporters on this site are, like myself, strongly libertarian as well as left. Labour is, as the chart shows, even more authoritarian than the tories or kippers; that’s why I’m not a Labour voter (generally LD in the past, but now green).

    This leads me to think that for most people on here with similar scores to me, the left aspect of their political perspective is more important that the libertarian, whereas with me it’s the opposite.

    The conclusion must be that, to be useful as a guide to political affiliatiob, the compass will need a refinement which not only separates the two axes, but weights them for relative importance to the respondent.

  9. Statgeek’s chart makes me look like some kind of radical lefty. Just for the record, I’m on the right of the Sheffield Labour Students, so some of them probably need the graph extending!

  10. I think that the UKIP vote is perhaps the single most important unknown in polling at the moment, and there should be even more attention paid to it.

    If the polling is essentially correct, then it’s almost inconceivable at this point that Labour won’t win a majority in 2015, and the whole thing is a bit boring unless something changes dramatically. But if the UKIP vote will mostly “return home to the Tories”, then Cameron could be in with a shout.

    In short, a call for as much research and reporting as possible on the UKIP question!

  11. Dogs

    On a crude measure, on the (very) few occasions LD + UKIP less than or equal to 20% with Yougov, LAB has hit 40.

  12. Labour VI unchanged. Con VI jumping 4 points in 2 days? I think not. moe.

    Con VI seems to be derived from a random number generator at the moment. I suspect it’s being driven by a relatively small number of people in an under-represented part of the electorate (e.g. 18-24 C2DEs), who are being up-weighted and having a disproportionate effect.

  13. Statgeek

    No worries. I’d be somewhere else entirely if I took the test tomorrow. Many of those questions have very different answers if you consider what your IDEAL would be, or if you consider what is practically possible in the current era.

    Mr N

    I suspect the whole test has a left-ward bias. Look at ToH! He claims to think that the Cameroons are a bunch of commie infiltrators, but he’s within touching distance of Francois Hollande.

  14. jack r


    “dogs” !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    They are Rosie and Daisie, my babies, girls or puppies ta very much.

    I don’t refer to you lot as “humans”.

    Please don’t hurt their feelings: they can read you know.

    Ta for the analysis though.

    Seems sort of logical to me, on the broader front, that if the LDs are doomed ‘cos a lot of 2010 voters didn’t like them colluding with the Tories then those same people are hardly likely to vote Tory instead in 2015 and it is pretty much game over.

    Add the fact that Cam/Clegg helpfully gave Miliband an election date so that the Lab party could work out timings of all their policy announcements and so on and it could hardly be more advantageous.

    Especially when one considers the potential meltdown they were facing prior to the 2010 GE.

    Please don’t

  15. Rosieee (whos’ a good girl) and Daisie (you peed in the kitchen last night, so can buggar right off):

    I actually have a ‘best friend’ myself, although I know one or two will look away in disgust when I say she’s a Staffie. However, with mine, the only danger of death is through repeated licking. The phrase daft as a brush doesn’t do her justice. She’s makes the Chuckle Brothers look intelligent (and they’re from Rotherham!)

    I agree, must be easy as an opposition to know the date of the GE. Every time VI drops slightly, put out a mega policy, and boom it’s back to at least six%.

    I’d like to think Mili and Balls know this, and have some tricks up their sleeves to come. The cards they’ve played so far have been excellent.

    As an aside (and this may have been mentioned earlier), anyone hear Balls on Radio 2 play the p-an-o? Was quite funny actually, in a good way. And good on him for having the mettle to do it.

  16. @MoG Those coords pop you between the ‘d’ of Oldnat and the ‘m’ of Bcrombie.


    Yes, there may well be some bias in there, or perhaps we perceive ourselves to be something we’re not. I tried it again after I saw my results, but this time I answered it, imagining myself to be 19 and back in 1992.

    The results were not awfully different. Perhaps a little more right-wing by a point and a bit, but pretty much the same authoritarian level. This either suggests that I haven’t changed much ethically, or was always right (correct), and still am right (correct). :))

    That’s not to say I don’t have ‘strongly agree or strongly disagree’ answers, but I get the feeling they cancel each other out. (e.g. I believe in a free market, and believe in abortions for all

  17. Personally I am a bit suspicious of the scores attributed to various politicians, past and present and especially of the scores attributed to political parties.

    The differences between parties (and often between politicians) on particular policies can be pretty nuanced. And when you ask them generic questions about broad themes (are you in favour of motherhood and apple pie?) they could probably all give the same answer and claim that their current policy is evidence of their belief.

    Who says that “The Labour Party” is so far to the right and so authoritarian? What “rightist” answers would this old comrade of a political beast have given to get such a score?

    I suspect whoever plugged in the alleged scores for the parties (and for the likes of Thatcher and Blair) was probably a bit biased in their interpretation of policies and pronouncements.

  18. The abortion question is an odd one. It’s a subject I’ve wrestled with my whole life (and still can’t quite come to a definitive position).

    But in general terms, why does opposing the hitting of children with belts make you left wing, and opposing the skewering of children with knitting needles make you right wing?

  19. @MoG

    The conclusion must be that, to be useful as a guide to political affiliatiob, the compass will need a refinement which not only separates the two axes, but weights them for relative importance to the respondent.

    It has occurred to me that it might be worth re-drawing the graph, with the X,Y zeros being the 2010 General Election, or the current VI. That would make it more interesting. The former would put you down one, and slightly to the right of Hollande, and me slightly left of Blair (pffft).

  20. @Neil A

    It doesn’t and like me you fell in to the trap. I compared a traditional left-wing policy (pro-abortion), and forgot we’re talking economical wings. The abortion issue is authoritarian / libertarian. So I traded a right wing economical issue against a libertarian issue.

    Hitting children would also be an auth / lib issue. Perhaps a better example would be that I favour a little protectionism to favour home-grown good and products, but favour a free market in general. In one sense it’s a trade off (excuse the pun), and in another I’m contradicting myself.

  21. NEIL A

    I don’t know how the political compass was created, but the normal process for such attitudinal surveys is to test a wide array of questions, and then select from them (for use in the final survey) the ones which differentiate supporters of particular groups from each other.

    It doesn’t matter whether there appears to be a logical connection, as long as different groups respond to the questions differently (and reasonably consistently).

  22. As with the previous three, the Survation seats were presumably picked as being good for UKIP for some local reason(s): a high UKIP score in 2010, good county results, a prominent candidate. The only mystery is Crewe and Nantwich which doesn’t seem to have any significance I can see and produces a UKIP VI that we would expect from national polls.

    However these were telephone polls so the usual high UKIP scores we see in Survation’s online polls (and those of Opinium and ComRes) wouldn’t necessarily be expected. Where they differ from other telephone polls though is presumably in offering UKIP explicitly rather than only after the respondent selecting ‘Another Party'[1]. There’s possibly a good reason to do this, especially with telephone polls where people may be less likely to want to ask for the second list unless they are sure of their choice (instead they might say Don’t Know).

    So it is quite likely that these actually are good seats for UKIP and so by definition untypical, this means the swings may be accurate enough. UKIP’s vote is almost certainly pretty even in general, but the fact that five of the seven so far are the sort of seats they did well in in the counties (coastal non-city seats in the South and East). There aren’t that many of such seats after all and they will be balanced by areas where they do much worse than average, notably Scotland.

    [1] Survation’s methodology statement is a bit confusing (they haven’t changed it enough from their online one) but I assume this is what they did.

  23. I think this Poll may a bit of a rogue. Perversely I think like a Runner on the last corner of a Race the Conservatives do not want to be ahead but rather on the shoulder of the Eds as the last bend comes into view for 2015. Momentum is a funny thing and it can benefit to be seen to be going positive as the finish line approaches …
    The Poll probably has something for both main Parties but I still think the Libs will poll much better than people expect.

  24. For what it’s worth (and without denigrating the achievements of Statgeek in composing that graph) I’d actually recommend this one:

    In addition to rating you on several different criteria, beyond Libertarian-Authoritarian and Left-Right, it places you in a broad political category and allows you to emphasise those policies which are most important to you.

    For instance, my result:

    Cosmopolitan/Nationalistic: -46%
    Secular/Fundamentalist (meaning theocrat): -59%
    Visionary/Reactionary: -49%
    Anarchistic/Authoritarian: -36%
    Communistic/Capitalistic: -50%
    Pacifist/Militaristic: -42%
    Ecological/Anthropocentric: -22%

    That would require either taking an average for everyone or constructing multiple graphs (sorry Statgeek!) but gives a truer picture of what we believe.

    Particularly in my case, my moderate-left views (which it correctly identifies as Social Democrat) are much better shown here than on the Political Compass.

  25. Wow it’s test night. Michael Wilshaw would be proud of us.

    33% cosmopolitan/nationalistic
    64% secular/fundamentalist
    46% visionary/reactionary
    36% anarchistic/authoritarian
    58% communistic/capitalistic
    45% pacifist/militaristic
    -43% ecological/anthropocentric


    Attitudinal surveys are only useful if they are normed on the appropriate population.

    Despiote the Union flag on that site, the spelling of “labor” makes me suspect that it is normed on US society, and may not be appropriate here.

  27. hmm not sure about the +/- convention
    Most of mine are in the left hand column (except the last one)


    The terminology used in this description of me from the site also makes me suspicious of how it is normed!

    “You are a Social Democrat. 10 percent of the test participators are in the same category and 27 percent are more extremist than you.”

    “Extremist” is a really loaded word.

  29. Some of the language is ‘funny’ and the largest cross-breaks are Germany and US . In fact I didn’t understand one or two of the questions at all.
    Fascinating cross breaks – the lady from Samoa is a very ecological religious nationalistic communist.

  30. @Oldnat

    You can go to the results and tell it to show your results based on age / nationality / gender / education or any mix of that lot.

    I did the ‘quick test’ and quickly, and in a few cases I took the time to put neutral, and specifically weighted those, as I wanted to emphasize the point that I was neutral on certain issues.

    “You are a bourgeois patriot. 6 percent of the test participators are in the same category and 77 percent are more extremist than you.”

    Apparently ‘Bourgeois Patriot’ is a fancy way of saying I’m neutral on many issues, so the test works. So I took the long test.

    “You are a social democratic patriot. 4 percent of the test participators are in the same category and 95 percent are more extremist than you.”

    Cosmopolitan/Nationalistic: 9%
    Secular/Fundamentalist: -46%
    Visionary/Reactionary: -1%
    Anarchistic/Authoritarian: -3%
    Communistic/Capitalistic: -1%
    Pacifist/Militaristic: 3%
    Ecological/Anthropocentric: 21%

    Quite boring really. Less religion in politics sounds about right. Less green politics too. Yup. More windmills and less hot air about how/when/why would do.


    There was me thinking you were a nationalistic, religious, reactionary, with a bent for authoritarian capitalism and militaristic ecological views (up in a tree with a howitzer).

  31. I’m fairly sure it’s German – the subdirectory used for the test description is called “politiktest” and the first flag on the language selection is German.

    I don’t think it’s trying to say extremist in the sense we understand it – “strident” or “radical” might be better.

  32. The UK crossbreak gives a worrying 8% of the population as “Trotskyist” or “Leftist-Fascist”. Arthur Scargill will be pleased.


    It’s not particularly important where the survey is normed – only that if it hasn’t been normed at all, it is total nonsense, and if it’s been normed within a different political system, it’s only partial nonsense. :-)

  34. 19% of Germans are Social Democratic Cosmopolitans
    And a further 17% are Cosmopolitan Social Democrats
    Social Cosmopolitan Democrats must be in Other :)


    Which begs the question – Where are the Democratic Social Cosmopolitans?

  36. @Oldnat

    “It’s not particularly important where the survey is normed – only that if it hasn’t been normed at all, it is total nonsense, and if it’s been normed within a different political system, it’s only partial nonsense.”

    Indeed, and at 2am and beyond, nonsense is all I can consider.

    “Where are the Democratic Social Cosmopolitans?”

    They work at YouGov and party in London most weekends.

    Here’s one I did a few years back. I found the questioning more rigorous and came back with left/right +1.4, pragmatism +0.45. It puts Tony Blair on the left of centre (so who knows if that’s fair or not).



    Of course, a Cosmopolitan Democratic Social could only take place in the Co-operative Hall (with Jeannie McCall as the belle of the ball).

    And with that nonsense, goodnight all.

  38. The interesting thing for me in the Survation poll was the percentages of UKIP voters who would switch to Tory to stop Ed Miliband getting in. A very loaded question but did suggest that Tories could get back 1/3rd of the UKIP vote come 2015 potentially putting UKIP down to 6 or 7%.

    Lots of ifs and buts in that assumption but although those polls will be useful to UKIP in a number of ways (simply putting them in leaflets and saying how it is not a wasted vote and using them for targeting) they only give UKIP a very small glimmer of hope of winning any of their top targets. However the Greens managed it in Brighton with much less publicity than these polls will give UKIP.

  39. 36% and no sine of sine ?????

  40. Statgeek
    According to your chart, in the previous thread, I, the resident communist, am to the right of most of the people here. Further right than most of the social democrats. I think that’s proof enough that something’s wrong. ;)

    A major problem with these tests is that they never also test for context.

    So if you asked most people the apple pie and mother question, ‘Should people follow the law?’ (+1 to Authoritarianism) most people would answer yes.

    But if I asked ‘Imagine you live in a society where the law segregates based on race. Should people follow the law?’ you might get slightly different results.

  41. @ Mr nameless

    I’m a national democratic socialist- feeling relieved to get the democratic bit included in my description!

  42. About the only common factor in the polls is that Labour remains in the high 30’s /low 40’s in all of them and in the lead.

    So Polldrums as far as Labour concerned the movement appears to be “floating” UKIP/Tory Voters

    If Labour remains where it is these fluctuations are largely irrelevant.

  43. @Roger Mexico – “The only mystery is Crewe and Nantwich… ”

    Paul Nuttall is MEP for the region and seems to take an interest in the constituency… he led a recent leafleting drive there about Bulgaria/Romania and HS2. Edward “Timmy” Timpson is the second rank minister who was characterised as a “toff” at the last election.

    Damian Collins, Laura Sandys, Brendan Lewis and Nick Gibb are the other Con MPs in UKIP/Survation’s firing line… none of whom seem to be remotely eurosceptic. Nick Gibb might be an exception there, but he is closely associated with Tory modernisers.

  44. @Roger Mexico

    From what I understand, some UKIP supporters got it into their heads that they were doing well in Cheshire, which I assume is the reason Crewe and Nantwich was included. They are not doing particularly well in Cheshire and that might be because some of their local supporters are the sort of people who make overblown claims that lack much basis in reality and then post about them online in the places where UKIP people are wont to post things.

    Economic Left/Right: -5.75
    Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -6.05


    Economic Left/Right: -6.25

    Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -5.79

    Greetings Comrade!

  46. Something to mull over that was touched upon by Tim Wigmore in the DT today.

    One of the reasons for unemployment staying lower than anticipated was because businesses lacked certainty about the economy. As growth had been promised well before it happened, they were hoarding labour in anticipation of an upturn so that they could capitalise (businesses shedding too many jobs in the 90s is widely seen both here and in the US as a reason for some of them struggling to capitalise on recovery).

    As a modest recovery continues, if businesses start to feel more certain about the next couple of years or so, it is best that we do not assume that employment will pick up a great deal. Some of these businesses are still overstaffed and if they feel confident that their sector is not growing (and they may – as yet, recovery is far from uniform), then they are just as likely to lay off. We also know the Government wants to see a great many more public sector layoffs and if, as has happened over the last 5 years, well-paid and skilled public sector roles are replaced by insecure, low-paid and part-time private sector ones, the Government will not be inundated with thanks for it.

    Voters currently feel *less secure* in their jobs than they did 6 months ago. There’s a serious warning there for both Coalition partners.

  47. Leftylampton

    “Look at ToH! He claims to think that the Cameroons are a bunch of commie infiltrators”.
    A bit of an exaggeration I think, but I do see the Government as slightly to the left of center.
    I enjoyed Statgeek’s chart, although like you I suspect the test is faulty and has a left wing bias.
    Nice to be confirmed as a progressive, always seen myself that way (Statgeek’s alternative chart).
    I was also interested to National Socialism and National Communism so close together on the chart, always seen them that way

    Thanks for a bit of fun for us all.

  48. Morning Everyone,

    I’m here R & D – watching and waiting. -lol

    I’ll play safe and say it must be an outlier – but lets wait and see for the rest of the weeks polls.

    36% – A good poll though – but still a long way to go!!

  49. Chris Riley

    You forgot the IMO in your last post. I will not irritate AW by any other response.

  50. I am not going to do any more tests as I am basking in having recorded the same score as Saint Nelson of Mandela and pleased that Mrs H and I are compatible politically. I am thinking of changing my non-de-plume to Howika.

    Interesting tables from Populus and YouGov today (well, yesterday) and needs careful study. UKIP voters are a miserable lot though are they not? They are very worried about everything.

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