Following on from the ICM and Ashcroft polls yesterday showing small Conservative leads, tonight’s YouGov poll for Sun shows Labour and Conservative neck and neck on 34%. The full topline is CON 34%, LAB 34%, LD 8%, UKIP 15%

127 Responses to “YouGov/Sun – CON 34, LAB 34, LD 8, UKIP 15”

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  1. The worry for Labour is not so much the state of the latest polls but their failure to counter the narrative established in the public mind as long ago as 2010 and which has successfully pinned the blame for the deficit on the shoulders of the last Labour government. If voters don’t trust Labour on the economy then when push comes to shove they will not vote for them.
    But that does not mean voters will back the Tories. In an era when tribal allegiance is weaker than ever up to 40% of the electorate are up for grabs . They don’t see politics in terms of left and right and that is why some folk see no contradiction in voting one week for UKIP and then another week for someone else
    However barring the increasingly unlikely revival of the Liberal Democrats it is still probable in my view that BOTH the major parties will end up with a greater percentage of votes in 2015 even if the actual number of votes cast are little changed. Do the maths. We know that the Tories are pretty good at getting their support into the polling booths but in order to motivate their support to do the same then as I said at the beginning Labour must change the narrative. It is the albatross around their necks.

  2. Poll from YouGov:

    Do you agree or disagree with this statement: The Government should encourage immigrants and their families to leave Britain (including family members who were born in Britain)?


    Con: 32/37/29/3
    Lab: 22/49/23/5
    LD: 13/60/21/7
    UKIP: 51/24/22/4

    All GB adults: 26/43/24/7

    Well, thanks for having me, UKIP. S’pose I’ll be off now. I mean I was born in Leicester but clearly I should be off since I’ve got an American dad.

  3. The Tories will rue the day they threw away the opportunity to gain some seats from the proposed boundary changes. The party lacks discipline.

  4. @CHRIS GREEN: “Hasn’t Daodao established that he is of EM’s ethnicity?”

    And that makes his comment less offensive? His claim that it is ‘one of the major (unspoken) reasons why their current leader is lagging markedly behind the party itself in opinion poll ratings’ is also both offensive and stupid.

  5. I’m not so sure I would label @Daodao’s comment as offensive, just a bit misinformed.

    Personally, I’m struggling a little to get to grips with what he means by ‘indigenous’. If it’s people of Jewish descent he’s talking about here, they’ve been in the UK since at least Norman times, with obviously some significant persecution at times, particularly pre dating Cromwell.

    Since then, they’ve been neatly assimilated and are part and parcel of the indigenous population.

    @Daodao has form on this. The EU is a German Fascist plot, Kiev protesters are all Nazi’s, etc, etc. He strikes me as someone with a rather one dimensional mind that lags well behind the intellectual capacities of many quality posters on this board, and I would suggest we leave him/her to get on with his/her ramblings without doing too much to encourage the more outlandish statements.

    Each to there own, as they say, but that equally means we’re free to ignore things when we so choose.

  6. Valerie

    You have to go back a long way. ICM for the Jewish Chronicle back in 2004, when people suggested similar things about Michael Howard:

    53% said a British Jew would be as acceptable as a PM as someone from any other faith, 18% disagreed. More generally, 18% agreed with the statement that “Jews have too much influence in this country”.

    Ten years ago of course, things may very well have improved. Personally I would be extremely surprised if most people were aware of Miliband’s religion or ethnicity – you’ve be surprised how ignorant people are about politicians backgrounds.I well remember a poll around 2000 that asked people what part of the UK the party leaders came from. I suppose they could be excused for thinking Tony Blair was English, given he lived in England and doesn’t really have a Scottish accent, but most people thought William Hague was Welsh.

    Now, I assume it came from an association with the Welsh Office, or his marriage to Ffion… but really, he’d been leader of the opposition for 3 years, had no one heard him speak *at all*?


    CON 31 (nc)
    LAB 34 (-3)
    LIB DEM 9 (nc
    UKIP 11 (-4)

  8. @Nick Keene

    While I don’t doubt that narrative was fixed, I don’t think they need to challenge it. Because *even with that narrative fixed they have consistently polled better than the Conservatives*. Time is putting distance to the events of 2008 and 2009, they are less fresh in the memory and so seem less relevant to today.

    Bringing it back up now would only be refreshing a wound, when it’s functionally been put behind the Labour party and is no longer a drag on their figures. The ground that Labour want to fight on are those that are in their benefit, not on their past failures. It makes no sense at all for them to bring this up as a serious issue, and all kinds of sense to dismiss attempts to bring it up as ‘rehashing old issues’.

    There is no reason for Labour to fight on the preferred ground of the Conservatives when there’s wide open fields of assault.

  9. @Nick Keene

    I think you may have a point (or more).
    It is a bit ironic that Lab are no talking about instant rebuttal when there has never been even a token attempt to rebut the ‘Labour’s mess’ narrative which I agree is a poison to their VI and is now hard-wired into the views even of many sympathetic to labour’s aims. IMO they should be rebutting it even now and also rebutting the recovery narrative.
    TOH rightly took me to task yesterday for talking about the ‘alleged’ recovery. There is a recovery of sorts but not even yet has the recovery reached the dizzy heights of growth experienced in Q2/3 2010 before GO kyboshed it.
    And how many voters know how comprehensively GO has failed to achieve really any of his own targets?

    As for UKIP, they have quite deliberately avoided announcing any policy except on Europe/immigration. This has been very effective in allowing voters to ascribe to UKIP whatever pet policy they happen to support: certainly that seems to be true of local candidates round here. There is a chance – I really don’t know how much of a likelihood – that as we move into GE mode UKIP may be obliged to reveal some other policies (though I suspect they’ll try and avoid them) with two possible negative consequences – voters saying “oh, I didn’t realise you thought THAT, I’m off”; or UKIP members/candidates saying something similar.

  10. OK so MORI is even sillier than the ICM -6% and -12% drops. In this case its drops on 2 parties (Labour and UKIP) but no gains on Tory or LD. So they’ve all left Labour and UKIP to go Green? BNP? Loony?

  11. Just a local observation, but Labour here in Brighton seem thus far to be doing absolutely zero campaigning for the Euros. We haven’t even received a freepost leaflet from them, which I would have thought every area would get. On this evidence, I’m not surprised their poll ratings are suffering.

    There are no local elections here, which might explain it, but even so it seems a little surprising, and a tactical mistake given their desire to get rid of the Greens at next year’s GE and local election. If the Greens (of which I am a member) can get the most Euro votes across the Brighton and Hove area next week, as they did in 2009, it will be great propaganda for next year’s campaign, and a useful way of countering the ‘Green problems in Brighton’ media narrative.

    Also a little shocked to see UKIP billboards going up here (though rapidly defaced), even in alternative/student areas of city. UKIP obviously have a lot of cash, even if minimal presence on the ground.

  12. Others at 15% is really high. Something is weird in the past week. I would advise inspecting the Green figures when tables are available.

  13. Bramley

    Thanks for that – of course as soon as you posted I realised I should have checked the twitter feed. But it’s still useful to have them appear on the Archive because if you want to check back on a poll in future it’s by far the easiest way to find it.

    Unlike yesterday’s there doesn’t seem anything unusual about these figures – just that already existing trends are amplified. Spearmint’s already done her usual splendid job of analysing them, especially emphasising Labour’s retention problem which she’s been highlighting for some time now.

    The only thing I would add is that the ‘soft-UKIPers’ which the Tories are retaining this time are the ones who tend to go back to Mother at the first sign of trouble or an election – we’ve seen this often enough before. They’ll probably vote UKIP in the Euros and will probably say they will vote UKIP in polls after the election (they won’t). This means that what was always an extra 2 or 3 points is not available for the Conservatives in the run up to 2015 because they already have them.

  14. Okay Greens on 8% in that poll. Way overinflated and clearly EU elections leaking into GE polling. Expect them under 3% by the GE.

  15. Whats funny is that for several weeks the commentary has been “Westminster polls get influenced by the Euros just before those elections” and now that has happened the commentary has changed to “this is absolutely the GE result no question”.

    Two things we need to see.
    1. What the polls drop back to in a month’s time
    2. What Ashcroft’s marginals poll says. Remember that the last one pretty much demolished UNS as a means of translating national votes cast into seats won. next poll is out the weekend after the Euros.

  16. @ Alec,

    If it’s people of Jewish descent he’s talking about here, they’ve been in the UK since at least Norman time

    Not continuously; they got expelled in 1290. And Miliband himself is a second generation immigrant from Belgium/Poland.

    As far as the broader point is concerned, I don’t want to discount anti-semitism entirely as something that’s colouring the campaign- the Daily Mail’s attack on Ralph Miliband’s patriotism was a classic anti-semitic attack- but I doubt it’s the bulk of Miliband’s image problem. It is unfortunate that his presentational issues- coming off as weedy and overly-intellectual- are attributes traditionally associated with Jews, but it’s a coincidence (or rather, it’s partly a coincidence and partly a legacy of coming from a culture that values learning and intellectual pursuits). If Cameron were Jewish, the common accusation that he only looks after his rich cronies and doesn’t care about ordinary (read: Christian) people would look like an anti-semitic smear.

    Besides, Michael Howard is if anything more Jewish than Miliband in that he’s actually observant, and the rightwing press were more than happy to back him. Of course, anti-semitism is always a club you bring out to bash the Jews who don’t agree with you while you tolerate the ones who do, but it’s not an organising principle of the British right the way racism is for the Republicans in the US. It’s a very subtle undercurrent that only shows up in coded language in Daily Mail columns. If it’s having any impact on voters, I doubt it’s a conscious one.

  17. @ Spearmint

    It is unfortunate that his presentational issues- coming off as weedy and overly-intellectual- are attributes traditionally associated with Jews…
    Yet Israelis are widely considered to be the opposite. Their special forces rank alongside the SAS; their army is exceptional considering the size of their country & the population’s resilience in the face of constant threats & acts of terrorism borders on heroic. People might not like some of their politics but the idea that Israelis are weak or weedy would be LOL funny were it not for the seriousness of the challenges which that country lives with every day.

  18. @john b

    “SNP have jumped 7 points in two days, with Lab dropping 3. Anyone out there able to explain?”

    MoE most likely. I’m not going to be tempted to suggest a cange in a Scottish cross break is anything else. Today’s poll gives:

    SNP 32%
    Lab 31%
    Con 27%
    Lib 4%

    Lab 28 (-13)
    SNP 16 (+10)
    Con 13 (+12)
    Lib 2 (-9)

    Con on 27% in Scotland is less believable until we get some trends. Above 20% is likely, but below 25% in my opinion. Unless there’s been some left to right shift, and UKIP don’t appeal.

  19. I wasn’t really aware that Miliband was Jewish but unless you believe in some International Zionist conspiracy (and I can quite believe that Daodao does) why would you care? I really don’t think the leader’s that important anyway; most people vote for a party regardless of its leader. Best example is probably 1945 – people didn’t favour Attlee over Churchill but Labour over the Tories.

  20. @ Amber,

    The Israelis made a deliberate decision to rebut the stereotypes when they forged their national identity. The discussions from that era are fascinating- a lot of talk about “muscular Judaism” and so forth.

    (Which is not to suggest that the stereotypes are true of non-Israeli Jews, of course. Just that it’s something the early Zionists were very conscious of, and there’s a good reason our stock image of an Israeli is a young solider holding an assault rifle and not some weedy fellow reading a book!)

  21. Doesn’t this all show that serious electoral reform is well overdue in this country. When are we going to grow up and opt for PR?

  22. It is highly unlikely that Labour’s drop in the polls has very much to do with all of the things to which contributors to these threads pay attention (ie the daily grind of politics such as PPBs). Most people are just not interested in all of this. So, it seems most likely it is indeed an effect of the Euros with some erstwhile Labour supporters attracted by the Greens and saying that they will vote for them at the GE as well. I imagine they will come back to Labour fairly quickly after the Euro aftermath is over, but doubt Labour’s vote will rise again to the levels it was earlier in the year (ie consistently 38-40) because it will be held-back by the headwind of ‘good economic news’.


    Unfortunately it won’t be possible for Labour to fight the 2015 election on its chosen ground whatever that might be. The economy will dominate as it always does and the Tories won’t need to raise the question of Labour’s trustworthiness because the media will do that for them. The polls indicate that more voters still blame Labour for the deficit than they do the coalition. For one Ed Balls is too associated with the past for Labour to escape it. Getting rid of him in favour of a fresh face would help.

  24. Ed Balls?

    No normal voter would have the slightest clue as to his role in the Labor Government…

    A week is along time in politics…

  25. ‘Doesn’t this all show that serious electoral reform is well overdue in this country. When are we going to grow up and opt for PR?’

    when are we going to grow up and have STV?

  26. @Jack

    Is STV not a form of PR?

  27. If labour are going to get any chance of getting back in power they need to promote a positive agenda and Ed needs tto get on tv more as Cameron is on every tv and radio station he comes over as a safe pair of hands but labour can still knock a blow and be nice and positive at the same time.

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