Ipsos MORI’s monthly political monitor has been published by the Standard. Topline figures show Labour still ahead, but their lead falling – CON 31%(nc), LAB 34%(-3), LDEM 9%(nc), UKIP 11%(-4), GREEN 8%(+5). I don’t have a decent spreadsheet of historical trend data for the Greens, but that is likely their highest level of Green support for some time, presumably a result of the publicity from the European elections.

343 Responses to “Ipsos MORI/Standard – CON 31, LAB 34, LD 9, UKIP 11”

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  1. @Ed

    ‘Tax and NI are up and show solid growth’

    However, not at the level expected for the headline figures on employment

    “Despite all the efforts to raise more revenues through taxation, FT figures show that the OBR has had to rein back its optimism on tax proceeds almost every year since starting work in 2010.

    The OBR originally hoped the tax system would collect revenues worth 38.8 per cent of national income in the coming 2014-15 tax year, a figure that has progressively been revised down to 37 per cent.

    These downward revisions do not reflect any weakness in the economy – as they are proportional to national income – but disappointing revenue collection.

    Weaknesses in corporation tax receipts from the financial sector, declining North Sea revenues and low pay growth hitting income tax revenues are all exacerbating the difficulties of bringing down borrowing”

    FT March 31st 2014

  2. Floating Voter – Yes I would agree NI and income Tax growth isn’t as good as would be expect with 3% annual growth. Small wage rises and lack of full time jobs must be a large part of that.

    It’s also why I think monthly releases of tax credit claimants and expenditure would be revealing.

    Carfrew – Carney fueled a housing boom in Canada and he has been brought in just as Osbourne unleashed one here. I don’t see much independent about him at all. He’s an Osbourne appointment propping up Osbourne policies up to the election. Carney, and the monetary committee, seem loath to do anything to raise rates or curb the housing bubble despite the long term damage it will cause. Short term electoral gain for long term economic pain – the same old UK story with a veneer of independence at the BoE.

  3. @Chris Green

    No Union Flag either.

  4. Could Greens be about to over take the liberals as well in general election?

    Surely that would really raise some questions about first past the post, if the party in 5th can still muster toget say 20 MPs but the parties in 3rd and 4th have 1 or 0 MPs

  5. ALEC
    “[Interestingly, the UK population has increased by something like 2.3% since the crash, which means that to reach a similar per capita GDP, we need to see a further 2.3% growth beyond the pre crash level – some way to go gyet].”

    I wonder whether the population increase from immigration is being read correctly for what it is: an indicator of the strength of the UK economy and of the attractiveness and tolerance of its social base; and the substantive strengthening of its labour availability and skills levels which will give it comparative advantage, especially within the EU for at least the next two generations?

  6. @MiM

    Could Greens be about to over take the liberals as well in general election?

    This looks tough, down to money.

    The Greens are really poor relative to the Lib Dems. To muster a decent GE campaign, you need a £500 deposit plus maybe £2000 for basic campaign material.

    Even if 300 seats were targeted, that’s £750,000.

    I think if every householder met a Green canvasser, or got a basic policy leaflet, the Greens could get a good amount of votes for sure. Getting that message out is the hard bit.

  7. @ OldNat

    Thanks for this link to the Ukrainian poll. I suspect that the more populous regions in the South and East may have been underweighted, based on the last census of 2001, although there has been a significant population decline in these areas since then.

    In my view, the key finding is not the total figures but the markedly divergent views in different regions. This is ominous for the future of the Ukraine (minus Crimea) as a united country. If one looks at a map of Europe from 1700, the Ukrainian territories that were part of the Polish-Lithuanian commonwealth at that time are the ones that are emphatically pro-Western now, whereas other areas are much more ambivalent/hostile.

    Interestingly, other historic boundaries revealed on this map, which have recently or may soon be reinstated, include that between Croatia and Bosnia, and that from the Solway to the Tweed. Plus ca change…

  8. Greens on 4% again in today’s YouGov (Westminster) – so if they are getting close to the Lib Dems nationally, it’s not showing up in that poll, anyway!

  9. Alec

    “If Carney thinks that this is ‘near normal’, that worries me. All parties need to contend with the situation that the fundamentals of the UK economy will remain very fragile for some time to come. The notion being bandied about by some that it’s all over is complacent, and wrong.”

    I certainly agree with that although I thought the rest of your post was as usual rather negative as you usually are. Clearly a lot more lots are needed and a general down sizing of government before the economy really picks up to a to the levels we all want to see in a sustainable way.

  10. Alec

    Sorry typo should have read “a lot more cuts”

  11. Crossbat11

    “Not for the first time, ICM look to have come up with a complete turkey of a poll the other day.”

    [] The ICM poll was totally in line with other polls released at the same time including YouGov. It was the YouGov Sunday Times Poll which looked the outlier IMO.

  12. The unweighted samples in the last couple of yougov polls seem rather far away from the norm. Can pollsters really extrapolate from what appear to be fairly unrepresentative samples?

  13. Congratulations to OldNat, mother and baby granddaughter.

  14. OLDNAT………..Just stirred from my bed-sit in Sheffield to see your good news, congratulations, these little additions make life such a joy. :-)

  15. The unweighted samples in the last couple of yougov polls seem rather far away from the norm. Can pollsters really extrapolate from what appear to be fairly unrepresentative samples?

    I guess that’s what a 95 % confidence interval is used – an assumption that about 1 in 20 will be beyond the norm.

  16. Survation have a new poll for the Daily Record [Fieldwork May 9-12] – tables at http://t.co/Z7minrJDjS

    Data for the referendum and Holyrood can wait for a Saltired thread, but the Euro intentions are perhaps more newsworthy and very different from E&W:

    LD 6.1%
    UKIP 10.4%
    Lab 26.4%
    Con 13.0%
    SNP 37.2%
    Grn 6.1%
    Rest 1.0%

    If repeated next week that Would still give SNP 3 Lab 2 Con 1

  17. The Times Higher today picks up on the slow-burning ongoing crisis in teacher training that informed commentators like John Howson have been flagging up for a while now.

    This is one of those background worries that has the potential to be a serious issue for the next administration. University tuition fees are another (yes, I know they’ve been more than slightly problematic this term but laypeople gravely underestimate how serious the issue is). It will be interesting to see how it develops.

  18. OLD NAT
    Congratulations on the baby granddaughter. Nothing like it.

    However, on a totally non-partisan basis, I have to say I doubt if she can compete with our new 4-month old cavapoo, Jessie, as a cuddle; and notably on grooming through the persisten working of a small warm tongue in the left ear.

    Rolf Harris, eat your heart out!

  19. “On average, Ukip supporters believe that 38% of the UK population are immigrants.”

    (If that’s just the average one can only imagine what some of them believe.)

  20. To argue against electoral reform because it sometimes allows extremist seats is as bonkers as arguing against a voting system which doesn’t allow your party to always win.

    It’s well past a time for change.

  21. Going to stick my head out and make an actual solid prediction…

    Shortly after the European elections, the Green Party share of the vote is going to drop as people start to forget about them again. This will of course lead to a rise in Labour.

    However, such a rise will be spun as being a result of political events, rather than just reversion to an environment when people are thinking about FPTP Westminster elections.

    Basically, my opinion is that just like the Party Conference season, it makes no sense to actually pay any attention to poll movement in Westminster polling during the European Election period. We’re almost certainly going to revert to closer to polling seen a month ago, and trying to read into the movement is going to be misleading.

  22. @ ken

    “OLDNAT congratulations, these little additions make life such a joy.”

    They do indeed. My granddaughter is four years old today and we wouldn’t be without her and her seven year old brother.

    Many congrats, OLDNAT.

  23. Yep, think Jayblanc has it about right.

  24. MitM,

    No. They don’t have enough cash or members. When I spoke to Natalie Bennett back in (I think) November, she said the Greens would be targetting ten seats at the GE and six at the Euros.

    While they can’t expect to win ten seats, they can establish a decent challenging position in them, and although she didn’t specify we can make an educated guess about which seats:

    – Brighton Pavilion
    – Norwich South
    – Sheffield Central
    – Cambridge
    – Brighton Kemptown
    – Hove
    – Lancaster and Fleetwood
    – Leeds West

    And a couple of others I can’t think of off the top of my head.

    In other news, David Axelrod is meeting the shadow cabinet for the first time today.

  25. OldNat

    You don’t say whether said granddaughter is your first grandchild, but congrats anyway. I remember my mother, when informed that she was to become a grandmother, said that she felt she ‘had been catapulted into the next generation’. Idem for myself, at the time, as a prospective uncle.

    You just don’t have any say on such matters…..

  26. OldNat

    You don’t say whether said granddaughter is your first grandchild, but congrats anyway. I remember my mother, when informed that she was to become a grandmother, said that she felt she ‘had been catapulted into the next generation’. Idem for myself, at the time, as a prospective uncle.

    You just don’t have any say on such matters…..

  27. How did that get on twice?

    Anyway, about the Scottish figures for Euroelections, at least 3:2:1 will keep out UKIP, even if it does mean the LDs lose out.

    I forget who said on Monday when I asked about SNP’s figures looking low that this was an indication of the failure of the Yes campaign, but the situation in Scotland seems much more complex and, even, at times, bizarre. And forget what I said about Douglas Alexander being Labour’s only real hope. Having seen him in action on Tuesday if he’s Labour’s best hope then woe betide us all……..

    But how about this for a post GE situation: neither Lab or Cons with an overall majority, even with LD support, and SNP tasked with sorting out who will govern…….. the UK………

  28. And the Survation poll confirms my growing belief that Yes will peak at around 42/43, thereby losing by a sizable margin.

    What we could do with is a detailed set of polls indicating the variations between age groups – though to some extent this is already happening. The Yes have so far failed to enthuse the young – though perhaps that will happen when the schools and colleges go back in mid August, giving a month to get the young vote out – but I doubt it. The oldies are decidedly agin.

    What we (I mean Yes supporters) need is for England to do really well in the world cup – even to semi-final level or final, perhaps, thus thoroughly antagonising all Scots…… and producing a 60/40 split for Yes.

  29. @Zack Polanski

    “To argue against electoral reform because it sometimes allows extremist seats is as bonkers as arguing against a voting system which doesn’t allow your party to always win.
    It’s well past a time for change.”

    You’re right and our obsolete and discredited electoral system is one of the main reasons in my view why turnouts are steadily declining. And, before anyone says that the Euro election turnout will be poor and that has a PR based voting system, I don’t believe there is any cause and effect connection there at all. The reason for the low turnout in the Euros is because people aren’t engaged with the work of the European Parliament and have no real interest in the election. Nothing to do with the voting system at all.

    Of course, there’s a hideous vicious circle involved in this too. The greater the voter disengagement, and the lower the turnout, the more unrepresentative FTPT based elections become. Cameron is sitting in Number 10 on the basis of leading a party that attracted the support of about 22% of the electorate in 2010 (36% of a 65% turnout). Looking at the polls, we could have something even more ridiculous in May 2015 with the largest party getting 33% of a 60% turnout. Somebody else do the maths, but that would be barely 20% of the electorate, wouldn’t it? one in five of the electorate for Gawd’s sake

    The democratic deficit caused by FTPT gets steadily wider and it’s essentially a busted flush. When are we going to wake up to the utter outrageousness of it all? The debate about boundaries and constituency sizes is an irrelevance really. That’s just the equivalent of re-arranging the wreckage in a car crash. It’s still a car crash.

  30. Been away since Monday- did I miss anything?

    Re Evening Standard- whenever I make trips back to London I find the Standard up to this point in the election cycle quite reasonable. Some days they have left leaning articles and other days right leaning. They made a good comment about the polls in their leader which was surprisingly accurate. Something along the lines of you shouldn’t read anything into single polls but the Lab lead has been falling.

    Obviously they did a job on Ken Livingstone (some might say the questions raised were reasonable) and bigged up Boris but generally they seem to have a soft right wing stance based on their London commuter readership and very much free of the anti immigration rhetoric of the Mail/Express.

    Re Greens

    In the Mori poll at least it seems obvious that the Euros are having an affect on what people say to pollsters and making confusing a General Election with an election happening in 7 days time that is General to the whole country.

    However none of this is to deny that the Lab 35% is looking wobbly but would still be a huge surprise to me though if Lab did not poll 35% next year.

  31. Since the Evening Standard has been under the stewardship of new editor Sarah Sands it’s far less stridently right-wing.

    I’m often surprised at how well balanced it is. There is even the odd article/editorial painting Ed Miliband in a good light and supporting Labour policies. I imagine if Labour were to announce the renationalisation of the railways the Standard would be quite supportive, especially given it’s readership base who are united in their hatred of private train companies.

  32. “One thing I have noticed on here though is that when a poll shows positive movement for the Cons people get up in arms about MOE, but when it’s Labour it’s not MOE it’s the natural realignment of the polls. Just something I’ve noticed. The key is not to let hopes cloud the obvious trend.”


    Not sure how you noticed that, because there hasn’t BEEN much positive movement for the Tories for the last couple of years… most of the movement has been in the Labour VI. And people naturally look at the possible reasons why, and sometimes it’s MoE, and sometimes it’s the rise of UKip or Greens, and sometimes it’s things like defectors returning to their original choice, and churn etc.

    I.e., people put forward a range of hypotheses, some more favourable to a party than others, then look at the data to see which it really is.

  33. CrossBat
    Could not agree more, have been banging on about us introducing the German system , which Attlee ‘s Govt imposed on them in 1948, for ages now.
    You’re also spot on about the Euro voting system , the closed list system is pernicious to citizens ‘ democracy , it concentrates power in the hands of party apparatchiks , Peter Mandelson selected it, we could have had open lists , which would have put choice and therefore power into the hands of the electorate.
    The Euros are just a giant OP to all intents and purposes.

  34. Just an additional comment to my semi-rant about FTPT (see above).

    The common perception that the Lib Dems are very much the junior partners in the coalition, the David to the Tory Goliath, is supported by the parliamentary arithmetic. 306 seats play 57, not much argument there. But when you look at the votes cast comparison, 10.7 million v 6.8 million, the two parties begin to look a bit more equal, don’t they? In terms votes, the Lib Dems got to about 64% of the size of the Tory vote. In terms of seats that translated to 18% of the Tory seat total.

    It’s a nonsense, isn’t it?

  35. @Ed

    “Carfrew – Carney fueled a housing boom in Canada and he has been brought in just as Osbourne unleashed one here. I don’t see much independent about him at all.”

    Yeah I’m not buying the independence thing either. Not only does the governent appoint the governor, when the government decided they’d quite like the interest from the BoE paid to them instead they could just do it.

  36. Shevii

    I will be astonished if labour poll 35% next year !

  37. @ Old Nat,

    Congratulations on the Very Young Nat!

    @ Mr. Nameless,

    That’ll be Axelrod’s work. Simultaneously combating he images of Ed as weak and unmanly, and as someone in thrall to Old Labour and the trade unions. ;)

  38. @Barbazenzero

    That does look pretty close though. On the day I wouldn’t have thought it’d take much to see..

    SNP 3 Lab 2 UKIP 1
    SNP 3 Lab 1 Con 1 UKIP 1
    SNP 2 Lab 2 Con 1 UKIP 1

    Though the last one seems quite a stretch. I just felt like throwing it in there.

  39. We are now just over 11.5 months from polling day.On past form the final 4-5 weeks is likely to favour the Opposition in that incumbents tend to lose ground during the formal campaign period. This implies that the Tories have circa 10.5 months remaining to them to build up a lead that would withstand probable erosion in April/May 2014.

  40. sorry – that should be April/May 2015!

  41. Re. the great FPTP debate:

    Constiituency-based FPTP ensures that every constituency is represented by the candidate supported by the greatest number of local people, and that the Government is therefore comprised of the party that can command the most support over the broadest geographical area.

    Someone might prefer a system that prioritises other things: ensuring everyone gets some representation from the party of their choice (PR), or penalising unpopularity as well as rewarding popularity (AV). I would!

    But localism and winning support in your own right instead of being everyone’s second choice are democratic principles too. There’s not a “democratic deficit” in the current system, it just has different priorities than I do. It may be that as more voters drift away from the large parties their democratic priorities will change and there will be a strong mandate for reform (I wouldn’t hold my breath), but FPTP isn’t somehow illegitimate just because small parties have trouble electing MPs.

    And I think the assumption changing the system would improve political engagement is pretty naive. Countries that already have PR have falling turnout just like the UK.

  42. I have been tracking voting by age, based purely on the ST/YouGov polls since they changed the age split.
    Cleverer people than me can work out what it all means and it’s not specially topical, but I just worked out how to share!


  43. CB11
    You may be comforted in your view, that Labour’s leader is clearly not in favour of FPTP. I suspect the problem is that there are too many on his own side, sitting in safe seats, who think otherwise.

    We had an EP knock-up (telephone) yesterday. I was impressed.

  44. And here’s one with the page breaks sorted…. I hope


  45. @John B

    “And forget what I said about Douglas Alexander being Labour’s only real hope.”

    Wings has an article (“Quoted for LOLs”) on things. I’m not quoting it, as it’s partisan, but it is amusing.


    Utterly brilliant. Might even get Ed a few votes for ‘Prescott passion’.

  46. I can suggest a simple “fix” to ameliorate the worst defects of FPTP without a complete change in the voting system.
    1. Elections as now with candidates elected FPTP. All constituencies would still be represented by their candidate who got most votes.
    2. Any party gaining more than 1% of the total votes cast, but not gaining any seat, would be represented in Parliament by the same number of seats as its percentage. [In 2010 this would have given BNP 2 seats (1.9%), and UKIP 3 (3.1%). Other small parties got less than 1% so their numbers of seats would be unchanged at those MPs elected. Total seats would have gone up to 655.]
    3. Any party gaining more than 10% of the total votes at a general election would be allocated a minimum number of seats equal to its % of the total vote. That minimum would include any elected members. [This might in 2015 provide UKIP with seats in double figures, and total seats might go up by a dozen or more, but I suggest this an acceptable compromise as the LibDems currently have 57 seats with 23% of the vote, and could well retain more than 10 seats with less than 10% of the vote.]
    4. All elected members would be allowed to speak and vote as now, but in parliamentary votes, each party’s actual vote is capped, either to its number of elected candidates, or to a number of votes which is the same percentage of the 650 total seats as the party’s percentage of the total vote at the general election. [In 2010 that would give the Cons 234 parliamentary votes, Labour 189, others unchanged, so a coalition still needed. But in 2005 Labour would have had 228 parliamentary votes, the Cons 208 and the LDs 62 so that 35% of the popular vote would not have given Labour an overall majority, compared to the FPTP figures of L355, C198, LD62.]
    5. More controversial: voting should be compulsory with numbered voting cards (to be returned with a postal vote). “None of the above” in last place on the ballot form. In any constituency in which no candidate gained more votes than NotA a by-election is called with NO candidate accepted who stood or who was or has become a member of any party standing at the voided election.

  47. @ Carfrew

    But did you “buy it” under GB?

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