Tuesday round up

This morning’s YouGov poll for the Sun has topline figures of CON 32%, LAB 41%, LDEM 8%, UKIP 12%. The Labour lead of nine points is higher than YouGov have shown of late, but as ever, don’t get too excited about individual polls apparently showing movement, more often than not they’ll turn out to just be normal sample variation. Full tabs are here.

YouGov also had some initial Ukraine questions. The British public are far more sympathetic to Ukraine (53%) than Russia (3%). By 50% to 33% they think the situation in Ukraine is something that should concern Britain and the West, not just a matter for Russia & Ukraine. Tabs here.

Meanwhile yesterday’s Populus poll had figures of CON 34%, LAB 37%, LDEM 10%, UKIP 12%. Their full tables are here. Populus have also started a deal with the FT to provide a big monthly poll of about 14000 people. I assume this the aggregated data from all their twice-weekly polls each month, rather than new and distinct data, but it does provide bigger cross-breaks to look at. The first batch of aggregated Populus/FT data is here.

We are still overdue the ComRes/Indy monthly telephone poll. This morning’s Indy has a couple of findings from the poll, but not the voting intention figures. However, the tabs on the ComRes website do have voting intention as a crossbreak, so I think we can expect tonight’s poll to show something in the region of Conservative 29%, Labour 37%, Lib Dem 10%, UKIP 11%. We shall presumably see tonight. IF that is the case, it will be a bit of a reversion to the mean after a bit of an outlier last month that showed only a one point Labour lead, but also shows a lower level of Conservative support than ComRes have shown for sometime. Essentially it looks like a odd poll last month and a bit of an usual poll this month have combined to produce a big jump in Labour’s lead that is not reflected in the wider trend of opinion polling… but we shall see how the Indy report it ;)

95 Responses to “Tuesday round up”

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  1. Oh, and Colin your comments on the protests

    Ukraine has a population of many millions – do the reactions of a few thousand in the centre of a capital city always justify the removal of a Government? Were they all ordinary people, why did we see fascistic paramilitaries in the streets as well – some of which now use this to justify being in Government

    We have to be very careful when we make these leaps of faith – there were a lot of ‘normal’ people in the London riots and student protests as well…..I don’t remember you being quite as supportive. There may be still some there if they were allowed to be…the police wouldn’t allow that though. Remember Occupy?

  2. Any criticism of Russia from those who supported British and American aggression in Iraq comes across as pure humbug and hypocrisy -‘Do as we say – not do as we do!’. I am somewhat surprised that Putin has not yet thrown this back in the faces of those Western Governments now condemning him.

  3. Yes, because the authorities in Kiev are on a par with Saddam Hussein.

    False comparisons everywhere.


    @” Remember Occupy?”

    I do.

    But I don’t remember any snipers on the roof of St. Pauls.

    In fact I don’t recall any deaths at all.

  5. Russia has much greater reason to feel threatened by events in Ukraine in recent weeks than did Britain and the US by what was then happening in Iraq.

  6. Meanwhile,back at the Old Bailey things are quietly slipping beyond the radar.

  7. Colin

    The actual events are not comparable because of the violence used by the Ukrainian Government but the point remains the same – does the rioting of a few thousand people (ordinary people) mean that the overthrow of a Government is legitimate?

    The British police have also never been shy in administering a few beatings to protestors when necessary – remind me again how many policemen have been convicted for the deaths of innocent people in custody?

    I would also suggest that the British Government would also resort to armed force if they felt there was a chance of Government being overthrown by rioting protestors

    I am not trying to defend the previous Ukrainian regime or the Russians but I am getting a little frustrated by the portrayal of the current regime in Kiev as being made up of glorious upholders of democracy – they are nasty little thugs who have been in power before and been thrown out because of corruption, supplemented by fascists

    I would prefer for the West to stand back a bit from these people and make some demands of them as well – i.e. removal of certain of the extremists from the Government – or are these extremists likely to turn nasty if excluded?

  8. Neil A

    I don’t think Iraq is a great comparison, although it does taint the suffocating rhetoric coming from the US.

    I would use one of the many examples of Governments in the Americas – starting with Cuba where a nasty dictator was overthrown in a popular revolution but he was a nice anti-communist despite the death squads – not keen on Russia playing with US toys then was there? Perhaps Chile, or Nicaragua, Guatemala,and more recently the fomenting of a coup against Chavez in Venezuela.

    We have many such examples that are similar to the games Russia is up to – trying to influence who is in power around them.

    Unfortunately in recent times when the US has tried to promote ‘freedom’ Halliburton and other asset strippers are following around behind them and undermining what may have been a noble effort

  9. Comres – L 38 C 30 LD 10 UKIP 11

  10. @BCrombie

    I remember the West being cheery about the overthrow of Gaddaffi.

    Are the Libyan people really any better off now?

    This gives me a similar level of disquiet. I don’t entirely trust Putin’s motives, but they seem no worse than the motives of the west.

  11. A useful Fact Check from Channel 4 on the current crisis in Crimea.


  12. Looked in to see if there was poling comment. If today’s YG maintains the previous one, we will only need two more like it to be looking at landslide territory (if).

    Oh alright, here is a general comment on what is to be trusted in Russian society today and what is to be trusted in ours. You have read and heard all Mr Putin’s remarks. (I agree with Angela Merkel). Second, RT has not given a second to what Mr Kerry said. So our press covered Putin’s every word and their press covered nothing of Kerry.

    Does that not tell some of you something? Russian society is supposed to be a free democracy (chortle).

  13. @Catmanjeff.

    Do you really believe that? The motives of the likes of Obama, Cameron and Merkel are “no better” than Putin?

  14. Catmanjeff

    I am absolutely sure Putin’s motives are not at all noble and are based on him wanting to maintain influence in his region – he doesn’t want the EU and NATO on his doorstep – especially seeing that one of the parties in Government are vehemently anti-Russian and wants to have tactical nuclear weapons.

    I am absolutely sure that is a left-wing uprising overthrew the Government in Mexico or Colombia and had rabidly communist paramilitaries in security positions that the US would have a few words to say about it as well. Grenada anyone – and that was British!

    As normal a diplomatic car crash from the West…….made to look weak again by Putin. Putin is not that sophisticated and he has a poor hand to play but we never seem to learn

  15. I certainly believe that the motives of Blair and Bush were no better than Putin.

  16. I’m not sure it’s worth trying to have a sensible conversation in the circumstances.

  17. So Labour are doing better, but we’ve no idea why.

  18. I honestly find this E-W comparison tiresome, simply because it’s self evident. Not a real argument.

    It’s simple in political terms (Russia cannot allow NATO in Ukraine and the US does everything to obstruct any Russian agenda (Eurasian Union) there, but the silly PR games now have to be played.

    The media is more interesting. The events in the Ukraine is supposed to be the biggest crisis in Europe in the 21st century. Vlad gives a press conference (to rather select journalists) and both BBC and Sky decide to interrupt it… (By the way there were some clear mistranslations in BBC).

    Frightening level of PR jobs in the disguise of news. All these minute by minute stuff requires, so it seems, that various Twitter are considered news, that unconfirmed snippets make headlines without caveats.

    Hypocrisy at the height on both sides not leaving time for reflections (now apparently Berkut was trained by the Germans.).

    Public opinions have been ready though irrespective of the current events.

  19. Neil A

    A bit of a weak response I think…

    There are a number of points that are worth emphasising

    i. Putin is a thug and his excuses for the troops being in the Crimea are laughable

    ii. The current regime in Kiev is made up of equally dodgy characters

    iii. The EU and US have not seemed to have taken point ii. into account with their rhetoric

    iv. Ukraine is next to Russia and holds the base of the Russian warm water fleet with access to Suez and is strategically very important

    v. Because of iv. Russia is bound to get involved

    vi. The US would have done the same in their neighbourhood – there are plenty of examples of this in the past 30 years

    Also any Government would use armed force if they thought their power is at risk – we did it in Northern Ireland…..violence was used against the civil rights movement by the Stormont Government before the IRA appeared again.

    The complaint I have is that the way it is being portrayed tries to make it look oh so simple and it isn’t. If the current Government in Kiev was made up of genuine democrats looking for a new start then that would be great – but it isn’t is it!

  20. COLIN

    I don’t think quoting Kerry is a wise avenue to go down. The guy is bonkers and has CNN tinted propaganda glasses.

    Instead of him and Hague jetting into Kiev and stirring up the hornets nest they both should had flown into Moscow and held direct talks with the Russians.

    If Kerry is so much for democracy then why isn’t his government pushing for regime change in Israel where that country really is occupying another’s territory?

    Or what about Bahrain where the USA has a naval fleet? That country asked Saudi Arabia for assistance and they sent in troops.

    Until we stop seeing Western hypocrisy then we will see more assertive Putin types popping up.

    Kerry speaks of the rest of the world isolating Russia again and again but who are the rest of the world?

  21. I’m not sure why some posters here seem to be treating the ideas that Putin is a corrupt imperialist thug, Yanukovych is a corrupt Russian-puppet thug, and Svoboda and Right Sector are vicious neo-Nazi thugs as mutually exclusive.

    All these people are awful. They seem to be engaged in an ongoing competition to discover which of them is most awful, but the hat colours on offer range from charcoal to jet. We don’t have to pick a side.

  22. TheSheep

    @Allen Christie

    “Freedom of speech in Russia is questionable but it’s the same in the west and in particular the USA”. No, really, it isn’t the same. Russia may not be the worst, but it is far, far from the best.

    Reporters Without Borders press freedom index 2013:
    UK 29th
    USA 32nd
    Ukraine 126th
    Russia 148th

    Well I’m not sure how many indicators they measure but I’ll agree that the lack of freedom of speech in America is more friendly than that in Russia.

  23. @ Spearmint

    Oddly Putin actually said that with the obvious exception of your description of him.

  24. Spearmint

    I agree with you but the way it is being portrayed in the media and by our Government is not quite as you put it

    How many times have you heard mention of the background of some of those we are now preparing to chuck money at?

    It is not all about Putin and Russia

  25. I just switched on the news. Some Ukrainian soldiers carrying footballs, some Russian heavies glaring at them and an excitable reporter with a mike. Pleeze.

  26. @ Laszlo,

    And to think Merkel said he was living in a fantasy world!

    Meanwhile, on the domestic front: lol ComRes.

  27. valerie

    “I just switched on the news. Some Ukrainian soldiers carrying footballs, some Russian heavies glaring at them and an excitable reporter with a mike. Pleeze”

    It was riveting and had me on the edge of my seat.

    Could you imagine the headline if one of the Russians snatched the ball off them?

    “Armageddon on the Crimea”

  28. @Valerie

    There is every chance of the Ukrainian and Russian soldiers in Crimea playing a match. The only problem is they won’t be able to find a neutral referee!


    @”I would prefer for the West to stand back a bit from these people and make some demands of them as well – i.e. removal of certain of the extremists from the Government – ”

    This whole thing blew up because Yanukovych wanted “alignment” with Russia rather than EU. The Maidan protest forced him to reconsider that , but he reneged at the last & hopped it.

    So the new Government is “pro-EU”. Presumably that means they will eventually seek membership.

    They won’t get into EU with an administration full of Fascists. Why don’t you just wait and see what the Ukrainian people vote for.


    @”The guy is bonkers”

    Then your not going to listen to anything he says are you?

  30. @ Colin

    I appreciate you points above. With one exception: “They won’t get into EU with an administration full of Fascists.” Firstly, I don’t think the Ukraine will be let in anyway. Both Poland and Latvia had fascists in their governments (though only after admission) and Hungary has a fascist government right now (and probably more corrupt than the previous Ukrainian administration).

  31. COLIN


    @”The guy is bonkers”

    Then your not going to listen to anything he says are you?

    That’s the problem I did and came to the conclusion he is bonkers. Possibly a bit potty as well.

    I really don’t understand his rational in all of this. We have a situation where the worlds most formidable nuclear power has allegedly just entered an autonomous region of another country and instead of engaging with them he ramps up the rhetoric making the situation more explosive.

    Like I say….Pure dead bonkers and potty.

  32. @Mr Nameless

    So Labour are doing better, but we’ve no idea why.

    The YG poll today showed a bit of a swing of 2010 Lib Dems to Labour, and Labour holding onto more of their 2010 voters.

    I’ll be watching these two points closely on the data tables tomorrow.

    It is most likely to revert entirely to normal levels.


    @”instead of engaging with them he ramps up the rhetoric making the situation more explosive.”

    He didn’t actually.

    He asked Russia to “de-escalate” its intervention; to take concerns about Russian citizens in Ukraine to the UN, and to talk to the Ukrainian Government about the sort of relationship it wants with the country.

  34. I think some media outlets are distinctly disappointed in the lack of action. Not much is happening. The “biggest crisis in Europe in the 21st Century”, is looking like the hyperbolic equivalent of the “mother of all battles”.

    If I was the provisional/acting Ukrainian government, I’d just get down to business preparing the nation for elections.

  35. Just read this in the Guardian’s live feed, and might be a window on what we’re dealing with.

    “Outside the Belbek airbase, an aggressive self-defence group said they were there to defend the base against “Kiev fascists”, but also railed against Europe, “full of repulsive gays and Muslims”.

    “What you foreigners don’t get is that those people in Maidan, they are fascists,” said Alexander, a Simferopol resident drinking at a bar in the city on Monday night. “I mean, I am all for the superiority of the white race, and all that stuff, but I don’t like fascists.””

  36. @Colin

    Kerry has a tendency to shoot from the hip. I think Obama gives him a bit of latitude to do so. Note the difference in tone however of both Obama’s rhetoric and the statement given yesterday by the US ambassador to the UN, the latter of which was rigidly factual.



    RAF is right in his second para.

    Then each sides fascists can decide which fascist politician they like best.

    And Vlad can get back to doing press-ups.

  38. Colin

    Final comments on this

    So a ‘democratically’ elected leader can be legitimately overthrown after a protest in the main square of a city after reneging on a promise without recourse to the ballot box?

    Obviously he is a corrupt old thug but I did find the complaints about his opulent palace quite amusing – how about the palaces of the Saxe-Coburg Gotha family?

    I also find your dismissal of the fascist thugs in the current Government enlightening – perhaps as I said earlier the US will tolerate left-wing Governments in the Americas with the same kid gloves – even if they include Communist thugs

    I find some people’s acceptance of our enthusiastic support of a Government containing fascistic allies of the BNP quite nauseating – it seems some people will go to great lengths to support the actions of the ‘West’

    No wonder Putin keeps making them look like fools. Whatever happened to the subtleties of foreign relations we used to see in the past

  39. I’m not sure how the Ukraine reconciles itself.

    Settling back into an accommodation looks very difficult,.

    Will we see two countries emerge?


    @”but also railed against Europe, “full of repulsive gays and Muslims”.”

    That is a very interesting comment from a pro-Russia Ukrainian.

    Putin’s attitude to both groups is well known.

    I wonder if at least some of the alleged fears of the pro-Russian population is to do with fear of European Union membership and perceived exposure to both of those factors.?

  41. @Mr Nameless

    That’s hilarious! But isn’t it indicative of how many politicians are positioning the debate. “Yeah, we brought down an elected president by force but we did it for the sake of democracy”/”We went into Ukraine to defend international law”

  42. CON 34
    LAB 38
    LD 9
    UKIP 13

    …and normality has resumed.


    @” how about the palaces of the Saxe-Coburg Gotha family?”

    What has that got to do with it.? Ukraine is the most corrut country in Europe ( Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index in 2013) We know where a good chunk mof it went.

    @”I also find your dismissal of the fascist thugs in the current Government enlightening – ”

    I don’t dismiss them.

    I don’t know how many of them justify your description.

    Yanukovych lost legitimacy in my book-now lets get on with new elections & see who wins.

  44. Colin

    I am afraid your opinion of Yanukovych matters nothing I am afraid – he had lost credibility throughout but many elected politicians lose that before being turfed out. The ballot box is the best way to do that though

    I mentioned the palaces because there has been a big play on them in the news – I was just pointing out he is not the only Head of State that has opulent palaces that are the envy of those outside.

    Ukraine was also famously corrupt under Mme Tymoschenko – guess whose party is back in charge now? As I said one set of corrupt thugs replaced by another

    As for the fascist members of Government I suggest you know already who is involved – Svoboda and Red Sector

    Also, polls suggest that support for the protests and opposition were pretty similar – largely split on geographical grounds.

  45. Amazing the arguments some here contrive in order to justify Russian incursions into a sovereign state. Presumably this Russian journalist is at least as well-informed as any here:


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