This morning’s YouGov poll for the Sun has topline figures of CON 34%, LAB 38%, LDEM 9%, UKIP 13%. The four point lead is slightly lower than YouGov have been showing of late, but there was equally an eight point lead yesterday and both are entirely in line with an underlying average lead of around about six points. Tabs are here.

For the Times YouGov also asked the first recent questions about Lord Rennard and his future. 41% of people think he should leave the Liberal Democrats as he is damaging the party, 33% think he should remain as no wrongdoing has actually been proven. There is a noticiable difference between male and female respondents – men are almost evenly split, 40% think Rennard should stay, 39% think he should go. Amongst women 43% think Rennard should go, only 27% think he should stay.

As a caveat, YouGov also asked whether or not people were paying any attention to the Rennard story. Only 6% of people said they were following it closely, 30% said fairly closely, 25% not very closely, 39% that they were not following the story at all or were totally unaware of it. Generally speaking this should be a Westminster bubble story – it’s about a disciplinary procedure against a backroom figure most of the public have never heard of, in normal terms it should be the sort of thing that only the most politically minded notice and which is rapidly forgotten by next week. However, the fact that it is dragging on and on does increase the possibility of “normal” people noticing.

779 Responses to “YouGov/Sun – CON 34, LAB 38, LD 9, UKIP 13”

1 13 14 15 16
  1. Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. (8 March 1841 – 6 March 1935) American jurist; Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States from 1902 to 1932.

    “Taxes are what we pay for a civilised society”. It’s written on the IRS building in Washington.

    Other quotes of his include:

    “The aim of the law is not to punish sins, but is to prevent certain external results.”

    “The most stringent protection of free speech would not protect a man in falsely shouting fire in a theatre and causing a panic.”

    He sounds like the ultimate pragmatist. He left his entire estate to the US Government and had a wonderful mustache.

  2. Mr N
    Like l said,some yank.

  3. Which brings up the fact we have not heard from our mate SoCalLib for a while.

  4. Nor indeed from Richard In Norway. I wonder if he can a-fjord to drop by?

  5. Mr Nameless

    And his Dad wrote the finest put down to engineers like me, who try to optimise things to the nth degree. In fact, it’d probably apply as a warning to politicians who try to squeeze the fat out of the system…

  6. Crossbat11

    I might share your altruistic view of taxation if it were set at a reasonable level, which in most countries is not the case.

  7. Any chance Aidan Burley will have to resign because of his, erm, choice of garments?

  8. ” He left his entire estate to the US Government and had a wonderful mustache.”

    Who’d he leave the ‘stash to?

  9. ICM poll for Scotland on Sunday being reported as

    “Should Scotland be an independent country?”

    Yes 37%
    No 44%
    DK 19%

    If true, that’s a 10% swing from No to Yes since September.

  10. I will doubtless be shouted down but there is a heterodox view (that is generally accepted by Chancellors of the Exchequer such as King, and chairmen of the Federal Reserve like Bernanke and Greenspan) that governments which issue their own currency can never ‘run out of money’ (NB this is not true of EZ countries which use a foreign currency, the Euro).

    Furthermore, tax receipts are not required to facilitate or limit government spending, nor do sovereign governments need to ‘borrow’ to invest. Obviously, the danger of inflation requires spending to reflect the overall potential for wealth creation but with unemployment officially standing at 7.1%, the UK is in little danger of incurring inflationary pressure from job creation.

    In fact, taxation is a means of controlling the flow of the currency around the system, redistribution of wealth and encouraging other behaviours. In other words, tax receipts do not in any way represent the ‘income’ of the UK, and decisions about ‘spending’/taxing are entirely political decisions… altruistic or not.

  11. @YouGov: Update: Labour lead at 7 – Latest YouGov / Sunday Times results 24th Jan – Con 32%, Lab 39%, LD 9%, UKIP 13%; APP -21

  12. Good Morning COUPER and everyone from a cold and wet Bournemouth.

    Approval rating is improving for the Government; minus 21 is the best for some time, I think.

  13. CHRIS
    Prediction time? Lab 39 con 32 lib 9 Ukip 13
    Report comment
    January 25th, 2014 at 9:32 pm

    Wow spot on

  14. syzygy

    Yep. In fact the great austerity project is all about preserving the value of assets. There’s lots of property listed as security against a lot of money at western banks…in the UK a serious house building programme and sensible interest rates might mean a house value correction (i.e drop) which might make the banks technically bust, or even more bust than they are.

    I have long suspected (and argued) that Quantitative Easing was never really about getting money into circulation (there are loads of better ways to do that) and everything to do with bailing out insolvent banks.

  15. Will Hutton in the G-spot offers another view of the improvement in the UK economy and jobs.

  16. @Chrislane1945

    It is interesting, and perhaps of some concern to Conservative supporters, that the improvement in Government approval seems to do nothing significant (if at all) for the Conservative VI.

    A key plank for a Conservative win in 2015 is to be credited with improving the economy, and getting the support of swing voters as a reward. That doesn’t look like its currently materialising.

    Will it in 16 months?

  17. catmanjeff

    Yes, I believe it will.


    Labour tends to win GE’s when voters feel safe to entrust the economy to laxer Labour.


    @”It is interesting, and perhaps of some concern to Conservative supporters, that the improvement in Government approval seems to do nothing significant (if at all) for the Conservative VI.”

    Becoming a key feature of these Polls


    Imagine Labour won the next election and
    introduced polices that the leaders of some
    large businesses in Britain were unhappy
    about. Do you think this would be..Good or bad for the British economy as a


    Headline Voting Intention


    I expect some psephological genius will be along to explain it.

  20. Think I’ll just wait for AW’s analysis.

  21. @ Colin,

    I think it’s fairly straightforward. Look at the crossbreaks. 50% of the Lib Dems and 60% of the Kippers think that would be bad for the economy, along with 80% of the Tories (and 20% of the Labourites), but of that group only the Tories currently intend to vote Tory. So of course the total “Bad” score is higher than the Tory VI.

    Meanwhile, 21% of voters think it would make no difference, which brings the total “This won’t hurt the economy” score up to 39%, which coincidentally is exactly the Labour VI.

  22. @OldNat

    Dont think youve got that swing right.

    Yes are up 5, No are down 5.

    Therefore the swing is 5%. Add the two movements and divide by 2.

  23. The basic problem the Tories have is that a vote against Labour is not a vote for them, especially not now that Ukip have arrived on the scene.

    (Of course, you could argue that general phenomenon is a bigger misfortune for Labour, since the ABT vote is larger than the ABL vote.)

  24. It doesn’t take a polling expert to unravel it, Colin.

    The punter can tell fantasy (“imagine if…”) from reality (who will you vote for..?)

  25. CNJ

    I take your point the approval rating relative to the Lab lead has been steadily narrowing for some time (since Oct)- we could see a score better than -20 with a poll on the favourable for the cons side of moe in the next few weeks.

    This is the key question will reluctant approval (or neutrality) amongst some swing voters lead them to switch straight from Lab-Con in the next 16 months as ToH believes and how much of that increase in approval is coming from Tory (a few LD maybe) supporters who previously did not approve but still said they would vote Con/LD anyhow? (the non-kippy malcontents with no where to go)

    Colin – re 50p rate, I don’t think Lord Myners has much credibility inside the Lab party or outside anymore but if it is indicative of a feeling of Lab being anti-business among some inward investors it maybe significant.
    I think their is a dichotomy appearing with Tories becoming seen as the party of big business (notwithstanding the EU uncertainty dimension) and Lab relatively stronger amongst smaller business and self-employed.

    Re the other point, Steve Richard said on DP the other day that figures mean little about earnings growth, that peoples experiences are more important (we all know this) but also that by May 2015 he did not think people would feel secure.
    I guess this could work 2 ways with swing voters at the same time and the net effect determine the outcome of the GE.
    Initially, it will make some less well disposed towards the Governing parties but as you suggest the don’t let Lab ruin the progress we have made line may prove effective.
    Also the Cons will argue that more progress would have been made without those pesky LDs constraining them.

  26. “Is it me, or is every Labour speech now based on intervening in various markets? Logically you end up with communism down this route.”

    The same flawed logic that leads to the Laffer Curve, I expect.

  27. @ Rich,

    By that reasoning, the Tories’ repeated commitment to reduce government spending represents the first step down an inevitable road to anarchy.

    Well, I guess it is true there are riots every time they get in…

  28. Colin

    Most business leaders *really* do not want Britain to leave the EU. I assume that this means you will be urging everyone to avoid voting Conservative as a result.

  29. @rich – ” …intervening in various markets?”

    This takes us back to Colin’s remarks about Ed Miliband and Theodore Roosevelt (“unfettered capitalism leads to corruption”). Paradoxically markets cannot operate “freely” without interventions of all kinds.

    Roosevelt was also a pioneer conservationist, setting up national parks to prevent wholesale despoilation. Intervened in industrial disputes too.

    Rent control? US has some history there. Interesting to see from property investment websites where the UK sits on the landlord friendly/tenant friendly spectrum compared to other developed/capitalist nations.

  30. We had a discussion a few threads ago about wealth and power

    The 50p tax argument is a case of point. The people who will be affected by this are now across the media moaning about this (watching Marr now)

    The poorer people affected by benefit cuts and lower standard of living have no power about getting their views across, and when it is focused on it is very much on the ‘scroungers’ element

    The argument made by the low taxers is based on the ‘behavioural’ desire for people to pay more tax when the rates are low. This is intellectually unsound but is being hawked around this morning as though it is concrete by people like Marr

    And then the old canard about ‘overspending’ – glad to see Balls not moving on this. What he should apologise for is allowing the boom in house prices and the dominance of the financial industry to the detriment of others but, seeing this is the policy of the current Government as well, we will not see much focus on this

  31. Blimey if Ballsy wanted comment & headlines-he just hit the bull’s eye.

    Entirely negative as far as I can see-including from some Labour donors.

    But these are all Business people/representatives & rich people.

    THe two Eds have clearly calculated these people don’t count & don’t have too many votes-and besides EM thinks he can “manage” their market places better than they can.

    So-is this a cock-up of Hollondaise proportions-or an act of political genius.

    AW-can we PLEASE have some well thought out OP questions on this soon. ?


    Nope-I would obviously urge a vote for a DC lead Conservative Party.


    I don’t think its a “dichotomy” which has just appeared-I think EM is deliberately & knowingly promoting it :–

    Cons are the party of the rich & big business.
    Labour is the party of the un-rich & small business.

    Will it work?

    Who knows ?

  33. “Logically you end up with communism down this route.”

    Logic doesn’t seem to be your forte.

  34. With respect, it is business that provides a huge chunk of employment and tax receipt. If Labour want greater spending, fewer cuts, and expansion of the public sector, where are they going to get the money for it if they reduce the profitability of so many private markets? They will already be in trouble from day one, as interest rates on Govt debt will almost certainly go up based on their track record.

  35. Colin

    And I think these comments from ‘business’ people are a bit of a joke

    Where are these people going to move to with lower top-rate taxes – is this all that matters to these people?

    To me this is worth as much focus on the antisocial behaviour of these people – threatening all sorts of things that if done by the unions then it would be jumped on.


    @”Look at the crossbreaks.”

    Now you’re confusing me-I thought we were told not to do that ?


    Yep-I am certain that is what EM thinks too.

  38. @rogerh, i am trying to be economically logical, but the debate is always attempted to be closed down as it doesn’t fit the narrative. You need big successful companies as part of a growing economy with confidence to invest and see a return..i just don’t see how alienating just about the entire business community is good for anybody, rich or poor. If we have greater tax receipts and more growth, we don’t need as many cuts? Right?

    Ok, maybe I take @howards advice and give up. have a good debate.

  39. Rich

    I just saw Balls and he never said anything about increased spending or any of the other things you say

    The biggest weight on business over the last few years was the approach by Osborne at the beginning of Parliament which led to I’m missing every single target he set and damaged confidence.

    Also I think you will find long-term interest rates on UK Government debt is already rising; are you really suggesting that we should have a continually low interest rate economy?

    Just saw Marr have a matey chat with Hague – not challenges at all. It is getting boring now

  40. Rich

    I think you have a far too high opinion of your knowledge on the subject……I don’t pretend to be an expert but when you base an argument on the truth of the Laffer Curve then it is no wonder noone takes you seriously

    I ask you again where is the evidence than a 50% tax will not raise more than 45% – we know that cutting tax has a measurable reduction in take (3 billion from PAYE payers) so this needs to be off-set by the behavioural part which I personally do not believe will happen!

    Finally, again on Marr we had Hague saying that Balls getting his forecasts wrong. This is something that Labour should really focus on. The fact is the Government has missed all to the targets set out in 2010 and his comments that the deficit would still be high in 2015 and that growth would be delayed have been proved correct.

    We are growing now but how sustainable is it? Interest rates will have to rise towards 5% in the next few years – can with withstand that?

  41. The question Colin referred to from the latest Yougov shows a feature I have often noted.

    The question about Labour winning in 2015 with policies some large business leaders don’t like being good, bad or having no real difference to economy was asked about people personally and the economy as a whole.

    Whole economy:

    Good 18
    Bad 45
    No difference 21
    Don’t know 15


    Good 15
    Bad 29
    No difference 42
    Don’t know 15

    I think people respond to the ‘whole’ question more based on the media response, and personally to their own experience.

    In other words the personal question probably demonstrates the dim light in political leaders, business leaders are held in, and the power of the media to inform/misinform (delete as applicable).

  42. CMJ

    Yes -I noted the difference between “whole economy” & “personally”.

    But even the latter result doesn’t scream “vote Labour”.

    Anyway-it’ll all come out in the wash.

  43. @ Colin,

    AW-can we PLEASE have some well thought out OP questions on this soon. ?

    You’re in luck- you don’t even have to wait! Survation has already done a poll on it for the Daily Mail: The tabs don’t seem to be out yet, but the article with the findings is here:

    Conclusions: Majority of voters think Labour are doing it to soak the rich rather than for the income it will generate, but they like the policy anyway and they don’t think it will hurt the economy. Even Tory voters favour it by a small margin.

    Re. crossbreaks- it’s not a good idea to use them as a guide to, say, the voting intentions of under-25s because they’re so volatile, but if you’re trying to understand the apparent contradictions in an individual poll (as here) they can be useful.

  44. I don’t think it screams vote Labour either.

    It screams ‘don’t trust anyone, they are useless’.


    Thanks for that.

    Johnny voter sees it in simple terms doesn’t he?

    Raise taxes for people richer than me.

    Cap Welfare payments for people poorer than me.

  46. @ Rich,

    interest rates on Govt debt will almost certainly go up based on their track record

    Their track record of… maintaining the triple-A credit rating throughout their whole time in government, even for the year and a half after the recession hit?

  47. If anyone listens to the Now show (Radio 4 yesterday), the John Cleese – Ronnie Barker – Ronnie Corbett ‘I look look on him’ sketch was reworked.

    Very good and very funny.

  48. @B Crombie

    TV Interviews of people earning well over £150k annually by people earning well over £150k annually may not be the best way of obtaining a rounded view of the merits of the 50p top tax rate proposal.

    Fortunately there’s already some polling out, unfortunately without any tables as yet. Public opinion is with Balls by a margin of about 3.5 to 1. Even allowing for Survation’s credibility deficit you can’t really argue with that.

    The political agenda seems to have returned back the place it was in the immediate aftermath of the 2012 omnishambles budget. That wasn’t exactly a poor period for Labour in polling terms and they’ll be hoping to keep it there.

    I think most of us spend our lives trying to work hard but with the aim of becoming financially independent so that we can avoid the choices we make in life being dominated by monetary considerations. I am therefore utterly sceptical when those with far more money than they can realistically know what to do with claim that their life is so dominated by money that they’ll now have to break off relationships and whisk their family off to live in some far flung tax haven to escape the penal consequence of a 5p increase in the top rate of personal taxation. As if.

  49. Colin

    But most people (with their inconsistent approach) only have the power once every 5 years to change things – and even then it is flawed.

    The people who decide what happens and lobby/influence/fund the Government parties have that power and influence continually. These people are the ones who will be affected by the 50% tax rate but only slightly by the social security changes

    If we take Marr, I am sure he doesn’t have any direct impact from benefit changes apart from around the margins (child benefit).

    If would guess that on his salary the 50% tax will cost him tens of thousands of pounds (I would guess he earns 300000+?). This is a measurable affect For the treasury to gain from the 45% tax would mean that he, voluntarily, have to find some of his money squirrelled away in trust and allow it to be liquid and taxable again. Would he do this – I have no idea?

    The idea that the whole business base of the UK falls away because of a 5p tax rate increase – which is not much different from other developed countries (marginal rates are always difficult to compare) – is completely overblown

    The question can then be legitimately asked at which point is the optimum and we know that Osborne would favour 40%

    Don’t ask me to defend Labour’s history on this – I have only once voted for them and opposed lots of policies they supported in the Blair years – it is just the alternative is worse

1 13 14 15 16