Two new European election polls over the last couple of days. A Populus poll for the FT shows Labour in first place, with the Conservatives and UKIP fighting for second place. Topline figures are CON 27%, LAB 31%, LDEM 10%, UKIP 25%, GRN 3%. It was conducted between the 4th-6th of April, so after the Clegg-Farage debate. Full tabs are here.

Meanwhile a new TNS-BMRB poll also has Labour in first place, but only narrowly ahead of UKIP with the Conservatives in quite a distant third. Topline figures are CON 21%, LAB 30%, LDEM 9%, UKIP 29%. Fieldwork was also post-debate, and tabs are here.

All the European election polling so far is collected here. Note that some of the variation is down to treatment of likelihood to vote. ComRes and TNS BMRB take only those people who say they are absolutely certain to vote, which helps UKIP. YouGov include all respondents and tend to show less positive figures for UKIP (but provide a crossbreak for only those certain to vote which is also very strong for UKIP). Populus weight by likelihood to vote, which is somewhere inbetween (everyone is included, but people who are unlikely to vote are weighted down).

168 Responses to “Populus and TNS European polls”

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  1. TOH


    I do think that GO has had some sense of the balance between fiscally desirable correction of the Public Finances, and politically acceptable measures.

    If you want to stay in power you need that .

    But I do think that the result is a Debt problem for the next Government after Deficit becomes a memory.

    I see that IMF have now issued dire warnings about both sovereign & private Debt levels, and the dangers after monetary easing is stopped.

    Their flip flopping between Keynsian & Austrian policy is amusing.

  2. @AW
    Re: Gog the Mild

    Perhaps we ought to insist on a photo gallery of Highland scenery from all contributors. I could offer one or two of Argyll….

    @Gog the Mild
    Many thanks for wonderful pictures of Knoydart. Great start to the working day!

  3. Record/Survation poll

    Made out on website that Yes/ No is at 44 – 56.

    However there are results for Europe which are unclear.
    Do they have Westminster and Scottish Parliament rating as well?


    So that’s a slight increase for No from 9% to 12%.

  5. @TOH

    “If I were Labour I would be really worried about this, we only have 13 months to go until the election.”


    “The percent blaming the last government is remarkably close to the sum of the Con and Lib support in all recent polls. Coincidence?”

    There’s truth in both comments, I think. Labour are obviously still carrying the hangover from being the Government at the time of the financial meltdown in 2008 and paid the price for that in 2010, as nearly all the incumbents at that time subsequently did (apart from Merkel’s coalition). It’s highly likely that the consequent damage done to Labour’s economic credibility still lingers and is a suppressing influence on the support they currently enjoy amongst the electorate.

    That said, and this is where I tend to agree with Bfield and RAF, I’m not sure how big a political issue this still is in terms of determining voting intentions. When prompted, the majority of respondents still blame Labour more than other factors for the economic difficulties facing the country, but this is bound to break on party political lines. I’m sure that a lot of Labour voters are still blaming Thatcher for everything that’s wrong with the country too! Is that rare breed, the floating voter, obsessing about this? I don’t think so.

    The key is how much all this will damage Labour come May 2015. I think the next General Election will be, like most that have gone before, a referendum on the incumbent government. Debates about who was to blame for economic events that took place 7 years before, will be low on voters minds.

    I’m still of the view, like a lot of other posters on here, that the old zinger question, “Do you feel better off than you were five years ago?” will hold the key.

    What Gordon Brown did or did not do when the financial world went into meltdown seven years previously will be small beer by May next year. On top of that, I don’t think politicians, now held in historically low esteem, whining on about “it was all the other lot’s bleedin’ fault” will pass much muster with the electorate either!

  6. “I’m still of the view, like a lot of other posters on here, that the old zinger question, “Do you feel better off than you were five years ago?” will hold the key.”

    Of course it must be followed by “Who do you think is responsible for it all.”, giving voters the opportunity to agree or disagree with your ‘small beer’ thinking.

    Maybe we could have “Would the coalition have imposed austerity if the 2007/2008 banking crisis had not happened?” – That would also be a fair question for people not in love with Labour. :))

    All very partisan, eh?

  7. Questions about Labour’s record will be more subtly put to the electorate.

    I think Con’s question will be “who do you trust to finish the job” ?
    So this invites a comparison between the two records in power.

    Labour will no doubt ask ” are you any better off than you were in 2010″ , hoping that a) the answer will usually be No , and b) that this logically produces a vote for Labour.

    Asking loaded questions doesn’t always get the response one intends .

  8. Geek

    “Would the coalition have imposed austerity if the 2007/2008 banking crisis had not happened?”

    ““Would the coalition have tightened regulation of the banks if the 2007/2008 banking crisis had not happened?”

  9. The tables for the Survation poll for the Daily Record are available here:

    Yes 36% (-2)

    No 46% (-1)

    Undecided 18% (+3)

    After adjusting for likelihood to vote:

    Yes 37% (-2)

    No 47% (-1)

    Undecided 16% (+3)

    It’s interesting to note how little using LTV reduces the Undecideds by. Usually most people in this group are non-voters, but with Scottish independence there does seem to a group of ‘definite maybes’, people who will vote but genuinely haven’t made their mind up yet. This is why ignoring them and just quoting Yes and No adjusted to make 100% can be misleading.

    Survation also asked Westminster and Holyrood VI but the tables for those aren’t up yet. No doubt the Record wishes to eke the results out over several days in true Scottish fashion.

  10. Colin

    “If you want to stay in power you need that .”

    Indeed, I’ve always appreciated that the sort of Government that I would like is never going to happen.

  11. TOH

    I hope that you get one which comes reasonably close !

  12. Dave Nellist on DP today.

    Still going strong apparently.

  13. Daily Record/Survation results are up on site (pace Roger Mexico).

    Westminster VIs look bad enough for Labour; Holyrood VIs look dire. SNP seems to me to be stronger in the South (presumably D&G/Borders) than I would have expected, given the (presumably same people’s) intentions regarding the Referendum, so perhaps Mundell is under threat.

    If I were Johann Lamont I would be very worried indeed.

    And, as RM rightly says, the number of DKs is genuine and must on no account be ignored. With 17% of the votes still to play for, despite the bombardment from the BT campaign, the Yes campaign may yet win. So if I were on the BT side I would pray for no more stupidity from the likes of Lord Robertson. This debate has to be about real things that matter, or BT have lost it. And I never thought I would write that….. at least this time round.

  14. New IPSOS Mori poll out.

    Labour 37%
    Tories 31%
    UKIP 15%
    Lib Dems 9%

    fieldwork – last Sat-Mon

  15. R Huckle
    A big drop in LD and lift to UKIP. Farage wins from Clegg?

  16. @Colin: I think Con’s question will be “who do you trust to finish the job” ?

    In 1945 the Conservative’s slogan was . ‘Let us finish the job’. The electorate thought not.

  17. Or Conservatives’ (before the grammar police catch me).

  18. @John B
    Every question in a poll can be influenced by the way that answers to a question that comes before it set a context in which it is asked. That is why in polls to gauge VI at a general election, the question on voting intention in the GE always comes first.

    Apart from likelihood to vote, the substantive questions in the Survation poll were asked in the following order:
    – Should Scotland be an independent country
    – European parliament
    – Scottish parliament constituency 2016
    – Scottish parliament list 2016
    – Scottish parliament constituency vote 2011
    – Scottish parliament list vote 2011
    – Westminster election

    You can I think rely a lot more on the answers from the top of that list than on the answers from the bottom.

  19. If as I understand it Maria Miller was alleged to have over claimed some £46,000 and initially this was the amount she should have returned. However a committee of MPs reduced this to just under £6,000 leaving her £40,000 in pocket. Now when you consider that the averaged unskilled worker probably only takes home around £20,000 per year she has it seems pocketed two years wages. We cannot therefore be surprised not only at the anger created by this but also the incredulity of Cameron not only defending her but even hoping that she can soon return to cabinet.

  20. CROSSBAT11
    ” I’m sure that a lot of Labour voters are still blaming Thatcher for everything that’s wrong with the country too!”

    That on the day that the Government announced the closure of 2 deep coal mines with the loss of 1300 jobs!!!

    Dennis Skinner in the HOC when told that there would be a package of support for the miners said, “It’s a load of crap.”
    So we know where he still stands on your right -left spectrum.

  21. @RHuckle

    That Ipsos/Mori poll is quite interesting considering its fieldwork was conducted some days in advance of the Miller story fully playing out: –

    CON 31 (-1); LAB 37 (+2); LIB DEM 9 (-4); UKIP 15 (+4)

    UKIP clearly benefiting (+4), surprise, surprise, but Labour up too from the last Ipsos/MORI (+2).

    I thought this was an interesting summary too from Gideon Skinner, Head of Political Research at Ipsos MORI :

    “This has been the best received Conservative Budget since Nigel Lawson’s 1987 pre-election Budget, yet it does not yet appear to have had a sustained impact on voting intentions. A number of factors are likely to be contributing to this: the widespread belief that there is a cost of living crisis, the rise of UKIP in the polls, and the Maria Miller expenses scandal over the weekend. Meanwhile, just as in February 2010, Labour and the Conservatives are seen as neck-and-neck as the party with the best policies for Britain.”

    Has there ever been a time in British politics where there has been such a disconnection between positive economic news and voting intention in respect to the governing parties? Lots of apparent good news for the Government buried in this poll yet, and this needs repeating to be believed, the main governing party, the Tories, are on 31%. Yes, that’s right, 31% and down from the previous poll conducted BEFORE the budget!!!

    Unbelievable in many ways, and more grist to the mill to the argument that we really do need to look in unusual places for clues as to what’s going on out there. Pavlov’s dogs really are behaving in very strange ways! :-)

  22. Ipsos Mori

    ‘Boost for UKIP and Nigel Farage after Europe Debates
    CON 31 (-1); LAB 37 (+2); LIB DEM 9 (-4); UKIP 15 (+4)’

  23. Crossbat – “clearly benefiting”

    Alas not clear – though you may well be meaning it’s the fact that UKIP are up is clear, which it is, rather than the causality being clear, which it hardly ever is.

    Never make the error of assuming the change in a *monthly* poll has happened in the last few days, when it could have been anything else during the month that did it – like the debates, or just the increased focus on UKIP in the run up to the Euros.

    Looking at the daily polling IF there was a step change in UKIP support it was after the second Clegg-Farage debate. However, realistically polls are just not a precise enough instrument to pin a change in polls on an event one day rather than an event three days later.

  24. @Phil Haines

    You may be right in general terms about the reliability of answers being higher at the beginning of a set than at the end, but even so, with an SNP government in power since 2006 (?) and Labour in opposition in Westminster I think the figures still look bad for Labour in Scotland.

  25. @Roger

    “No doubt the Record wishes to eke the results out over several days in true Scottish fashion.”

    We have to eke things out up here, what with being hard done by. :-p

  26. Survation poll VI –

    Using “Scotland Votes” for Holyrood & Westminster (changes from previous election in brackets), that makes

    Holyrood – SNP 63(-6): Lab 34 (-3) : Con 15 (nc) : LD 9 (+4) : Grn 8 (+6) and sadly, no Margo.

    Westminster – Lab 28 (-13) : SNP 27 (+21) : LD 2 (-9) : Con 2 (+1)

    Euro calculation – SNP 3 (+1) : Lab 2 (nc) : Con 1 (nc)

  27. @John B

    “Westminster VIs look bad enough for Labour”

    I’m not convinced at the ‘excluding DKs / Ref / Undec’ section.

    SNP 39.8%
    Lab 34.3%
    Con 15.1%
    Lib 5.7%

    Compared to recent YG polls, SNP and Lab are swapped round (with SNP a little high at that).

    From the Survation poll, the seats translate to (Scotland Votes):

    Lab: 28 (-13)
    SNP: 27 (+21)
    Lib: 2 (-9)
    Con 2 (+1)

    Having said that, there has been a bit of an SNP lift in the past few weeks. See:

    That’s the polls since Nov’11 with a 10-poll rolling trendline thrown in. Over the past 14 months there has been a slow, but steady rise for the SNP, and a slow and less consistent fall for Lab. Quite a few Lab to SNP and SNP to Lab blips too.

  28. @Anyone looking at UKIP in RoS:

    UKIP’s VI with 30-poll rolling trendline. Was expecting to things, but you really need to pull it down to 10-poll or 5-poll to see recent changes. It gets a little messy then.

    It quite nicely shows the long-term changes though.

  29. @JohnB
    It’s as though the Survation question on voting at the UK general election reads like this:
    “Bearing in mind the issues around Scottish independence and also Europe, and bearing in mind the way you voted at the last elections to the Scottish parliament in 2011 and will vote in the next one two years hence, which party would you vote for if the Westminster election was held tomorrow?”

  30. There’s also another Panelbase poll Fieldwork : 4 April – 9 April 2014

    Same as before Yes 40% : No 45% : Undecided 15%.

  31. @Statgeek

    My reference to DKs was intended to be for the referendum, not to VIs for Holyrood or Westminster.

    The Westminster figures must be regarded as a bit of a one-off, surely? If not, and Labour lose ten or more Scottish seats, then that must pose questions for their ability to sustain a good working majority after the next GE.

  32. Phil Haines

    Accepting your point, to an extent, every Scottish poll is being held in the context we all understand, that there’s a referendum on independence in September.

    The result of that will have a significant effect on actual voting in 2015 and 2016, so – as has often been pointed out on here – VI for these elections should not be taken as a prediction of what will happen in them.

    They are, however, useful indicators of the current mood in Scotland, and that’s why asking about VI for all 3 Parliaments and the referendum in a single poll is useful.

  33. I’ve just been reflecting on that summary from Gideon Skinner of Ipsos/MoORI, particularly the bit where he refers to “the widespread belief that there is a cost of living crisis”. Not, you notice, the cost of living crisis, but the “widespread belief” that there was one. Now I don’t know Mr Skinner at all, but isn’t his comment a little tendentious? Why would people believe there was one, and allow it to influence their voting intention, if they weren’t actually experiencing it themselves. In other words, if the crisis was a “phantom” one and, ipso facto, a deceit dreamed up by Labour, why would it have any political salience? Surely they’re not blaming the Government for something that’s effecting others but not them? “I’m not personally experiencing any squeeze on my income due to the rising prices of essential goods and services and my suppressed wages, but I’m hearing others are so it must be true. And if so, I take a dim view of the Government accordingly.”

    That’s not credible, is it? Either there is a crisis of sorts, and it’s effecting people’s voting intentions, or it’s a load of old baloney and a Labour canard. They can’t both be true.

  34. Scottish Independence Poll Update: –


    Same as before Yes 40% : No 45% : Undecided 15%

    Survation/Daily Record

    Yes 36% (-2) No 46% (-1)

    That Big Mo keeps on Mo-ing! :-)

  35. @Old Nat

    “Current mood”

    Do you have any impression as to the real mood in each of the Referendum camps?
    Does anyone have any real sense of how the Labour leadership in Scotland is feeling? Frightened, like rabbits in the glare of headlights or quietly confident that they will ride the storm? For the VIs for Holyrood would mean a third successive defeat for Labour. For Holyrood they are only ahead (I think) in Glasgow. They trail the SNP in all other regions. For Westminster they trail in all but Glasgow and Central. Not even in the West are they certain of coming out ahead. This is not what they were hoping for from devolution.

  36. @statgeek, now that’s what I call a ratchet. Be interesting so see whether the latest flurry of events constitute a ratchet also.

  37. CB11

    I was first with Clegg vs Farage, so neeaah!

    Am I right in thinking that Ipsos Mori do LTV adjustment, thus benefiting Cons (and UKIP I suppose).

  38. Howard – you are both right and wrong. MORI do filter by likelihood to vote, but this month it helped Labour and UKIP.

  39. John B

    Well, I have impressions – but they’re no more evidence based than anyone else’s, so of no particular use. :-(

    However, the information sources that can influence people, and the extent to which they are accessed may throw some light on what seems to be a very different campaign from any other referendum/election I’ve been involved in. Thhis from the Panelbase poll for Wings –

    Yes voters: 41%
    No voters: 17%
    Undecided: 15%

    Yes voters: 22%
    No voters: 21%
    Undecided: 21%

    Yes voters: 4%
    No voters: 8%
    Undecided: 16%

    Yes voters: 4%
    No voters: 3%
    Undecided: 2%

    Yes voters: 3%
    No voters: 3%
    Undecided: 2%

    Yes voters: 26%
    No voters: 49%
    Undecided: 43%

  40. New immigration news will probably be a huge boost to UKIP.

    What bad timing.

  41. Nigel Evans has been acquitted on all charges, so no Ribble Valley by-election.

    Probably a relief for all the main parties, since it would have been a catastrophe for the Tories if they lost, a sufficiently long shot for Labour or Ukip that they’d most likely be stuck explaining why they can’t beat the Tories in a by-election when the Lib Dems could do it in 1991, and an obvious and embarrassing comparison for the Lib Dems.

    (And a massive relief for Mr. Evans, of course.)

  42. @Howard

    “I was first with Clegg vs Farage, so neeaah!”

    You were indeed. Credit, where credit’s due.:-)

  43. “Nigel Evans has been acquitted on all charges, so no Ribble Valley by-election.”

    Seems a genuinely popular fellow, so I’m pleased for him.

    I fully expect Max Clifford, and the Hairy Cornflake to be duly acquitted too, just like Roache and Le Vell were. When will the Police and CPS learn that these non-witness, your word against mine, sometimes ancient cases will never convince a jury? They’re impossible to prove beyond reasonable doubt, aren’t they?

  44. CB11 and AW
    I presume Anthony has access to the tables. I just wonder wehther,as a permanent feature rather than a month to month change, Labour voters record a lower LTV than Con and UKIP. That was my impression from other LTV stats in the past and thus (note not h*nce) my comment.

  45. There are local elections today as follows

    North East Derbyshire (Con Seat)
    Wantage TC (Lib Dem Seat)
    Vale of the White Horse , Wantage (Con Seat)
    Cumbria CC (Lab Seat)
    Flintshire VA (Lab Seat)

    It will be interesting to see if any disernable swings are evident after this weeks events.

  46. Logic suggest [to me anyway] that the DKs will break “no” in the McIndependence referendum.

    If they are not that committed to “yes” by now I think caution will win out.

    60/40 is still my prediction.

    Thought Darling [who I quite admire] was awful on the subject at the weekend though.

  47. After adjusting for likelihood to vote:
    Yes 37% (-2)
    No 47% (-1)
    Undecided 16% (+3)
    It’s interesting to note how little using LTV reduces the Undecideds by. Usually most people in this group are non-voters, but with Scottish independence there does seem to a group of ‘definite maybes’,

    -I fundamentally doubt it’s more than Half of them and even if all HALF voted Yes which is statistically close to 0 % likelihood then it would still be a win for No

  48. @OldNat

    Sorry to be behind on this, but

    Yes voters: 26%
    No voters: 49%
    Undecided: 43%


    Seriously? 49% of ‘No’ voters have not sought any information? Does that explain the way they are going to vote?

    Or have I misunderstood?

  49. @Crossbat11

    I’d suggest that the polling evidence shows it did have a positive effect for the Conservatives, and the Conservatives are benefiting from the “general Economic good news”.

    But not by enough, and not to enough of the right people.

    This was always the risk of banking everything on Economic recovery to save the day. And you’ll find me saying so again and again in this site’s archives. Those less inclined to vote Conservative, the ones the Conservatives desperately need to vote for them, are those who will gain personal benefit from a growing economy only after it’s slowly worked it’s way into their back-pocket. Employment and wage increases are always trailing indicators, and it’ll probably be past the Election before they really take off if there is a true economic recovery. The Conservatives needed these green shoots last year not this year.

    Remember, the Lib Dems should also be ‘benefiting’ from this since they’re in Government too. But the Conservatives have a vested interest in wanting to take all the credit, so there’s bound to be a spat over which one was a drag on the economy. The Conservatives will be saying “The Economy would be better if not for the Lib Dems!” and the Lib Dems will be saying “The Conservatives would have strangled growth if not for the Lib Dems!”. At which point I bet the public will just listen to the negatives and none of the positives.

    Labour could well just sit back and let that happen, but they’re taking the policy of ensuring it does with the Cost of Living campaign.

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