Sunday polls

There were three polls in the Sunday papers today. Opinium in the Observer had topline figures of CON 32%. LAB 33%, LDEM 7%, UKIP 19%.

The weekly YouGov poll for the Sunday Times also had only a one point lead for the Labour party: CON 34%, LAB 35%, LDEM 9%, UKIP 13%. Tabs here. YouGov also had a couple of tracking questions seeking to measure what effect the heavy criticism of UKIP on things like racism over the last couple of weeks has had. YouGov repeated two questions from earlier in the campaign – a week ago 41% of people thought UKIP were racist, 40% did not. Now 46% think they are racist (up 5), 39% they are not (down 1). A fortnight ago 27% thought Nigel Farage himself was a racist, 50% said he wasn’t. This week that has narrowed to 38% racist (up 9), 43% not racist (down 7).

Together those two make it look pretty conclusive that the attacks on UKIP did damage perceptions of the party. More people think the party and Farage are racist. However, it does NOT necessarily follow that it damaged their vote – it could just have served to further entrench negative views amongst people who didn’t like UKIP anyway. It could even have both helped and harmed them – making their opponents more negative towards them, but also bolstering their anti-establishment credentials amongst their supporters. The results tonight won’t really tell us – if UKIP do well, it doesn’t mean they couldn’t have done better without all the negative coverage. If UKIP do less well than expected, it doesn’t mean they weren’t headed that way anyway.

Finally there was a new Survation poll for the Mail on Sunday. The fieldwork for the Survation poll didn’t start until late on Friday, so unlike the YouGov and Opinium polls most respondents will have had a chance to see the local election results. Topline figures there, with changes since Survations last pre-election poll, are CON 27%(-1), LAB 32%(-3), LDEM 9%(+1), UKIP 23%(+2). Survation show some of the highest UKIP scores anyway, but the 23% is a record high for UKIP even by their standards – the first in what I’d expect to be many polls showing a post-election boost for UKIP.

While not a poll, the Sunday Times also had the Rallings and Thrasher Equivalent National Vote calculation for the local elections. This is essentially a very similar exercise to the BBC’s projected national share, but calculated by a different team using different key wards – Rallings and Thrasher’s figures are Conservatives 30%, Labour 31%, Lib Dem 11%, UKIP 18%. Slightly different from the BBC’s, but it essentially tells the same story – Labour with only a tiny lead over the Tories, UKIP doing worse than in 2013 when R&T had them on 22%.

1,118 Responses to “Sunday polls”

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  1. @Epiphron

    “Looks like we are heading for a clear overall majority for Labour in 2015 on these figures.”

    ‘These figures’ suggest a hung parliament, with UKIP on 28% of the VI, and Lab might have to commit to a Lab / UKIP coalition. In short, we can’t possibly take anything to the GE 2015 from this.

    Interesting stats:

    Con + UKIP – 51.5%
    Lab + Lib – 32.3%
    (4-party total of 83.8%)

    2009 results were:

    Con + UKIP – 44.5%
    Lab + Lib – 29.6%
    (4-party total of 74.1%)

    So we have a shift to the left and the right. Everyone will be happy. :-p

  2. FLoating Voter

    UKIP actually won 6 UK regions, but that doesn’t show the full story which is that they also nearly won NE NW and Wales.

    Lab supporters will try and spin it that its a somehow a huge success that they managed to win NE NW and Wales even though these were once their heartlands, they will try and ignore losing Yorkshire. SNP also continue to dominate in Scotland, the only result Labour can be happy with is London.

  3. @MIM

    oh yes i forgot Yorkshire and Humberside thanks for the correction

    UKIP top in 6 regions
    Lab top in 4 regions
    SNP top in 1 region

  4. @Maninthemiddle

    I can only remember the 27/27 one, and you’re only as good as your last(ish) poll, innit?

  5. @ Statgeek

    I was refering to Westminster polls, none of which has UKIP anywhere near 28%

  6. MANINTHEMIDDLE – Those outer boroughs did go UKIP but they wont return to Essex, Kent any time soon despite what some of the older resident want.

    In those outer boroughs demographic shifts will occur, like those that have occurred in other boroughs in say zones 2-4. Places like Tower Hamlets, Greenwich, etc. Always solidly Labour but with some other parties – now dominated by Labour. The old solidly Labour white working class (who would occasionally vote elsewhere) are replaced by other groups that are currently overwhelmingly Labour. The white working classes (including those on the border line with middle class) in Bexley move out, as many in more inner boroughs have been doing for longer, and seem to be losing association with Labour. Not a great surprise as elements within that group have strayed before.

  7. Whoops Tower Hamlets a terrible example. I meant Barking, Southwark. Places solidly Labour but with large pockets of other parties. TH may be a look at where Labour will end up in future if they lose minority groups who split away and not to an established party.

  8. “The white working classes (including those on the border line with middle class) in Bexley move out,”

    Describes me exactly, even down to the borough, now live in the South West of England instead.

  9. expected result

    UKIP 27%
    Lab 26%
    Cons 24%
    LD 7%
    Others 16%

    I put that into Electoral Calculus and got

    Lab 309 seats up 51
    Cons 234 seats down 73
    UKIP 53 seats up 53
    LD 25 seats down 32
    Others 29 seats up 1

    Lab sort of a majority by 17

    LAb/LD coalition?
    LAb/UKIP coalition?
    LAb/Other coalition?

  10. I think on those figures you’d have either a minority labour government, pulling a bit of support from the SDLP, or an incredibly volatile coalition of “not Labour” formed from most of the rest.

  11. Morning everyone – execiting night eh?
    @ floating voter
    With first past the post the above is just not possible.
    It leaves next years GE still wide open
    Labour must be quietly disappointed and a tad worried that they are not further ahead!

  12. I was thinking about the accuracy of opinion polls. The results were interesting. YouGov got near to estimating the UKIP %, most over estimated it. The polls when taken together over estimated Lab and the LibDeb support, and everyone underestimated Tory support.

    If (big if) similar errors are in the polling for the general election, lab & Tories are currently neck and neck, maybe even a tory lead, and the LibDems are v low. Either way YouGov, when they applied likeliness to vote, were the most accurate.

  13. Actually that expected result is not quite accurate, sorry RAF. It is more

    UKIP – 27.5%
    Labour – 25.5%
    Con – 24.%
    Lib Dem – 7%

    which gives

    Lab 299 seats
    Cons 230 seats
    UKIP 67 seats
    LD 25 seats
    Others 29 seats

    @Origimbo – which makes all the combinations volatile, IMO

  14. While Lab haven’t performed quite as well in the Euros as I expected in GB overall (apart from London), the result in Scotland is indirectly good for them. It shows that Scotland is less different from rUK than the YES camp believes. While no direct extrapolation is possible, the prospect of a YES vote on 18/9/14, which is the only factor IMO that could stop Lab winning the 2015 GE, is receding.

    The collapse of the LiDem vote, and the infighting this will generate, means that even if Con support remains fairly steady in 2015, they are unlikely to have a significant prospective coalition partner to enable them to stay in government. UKIP are likely to win at most 1-2 seats in the GE.

  15. Is anyone giving any thought to *which* seats UKIP might actually win in a general election? Are they seats which were in play as Lab-Con marginals anyway, a multiway marginal as per Brighton, or somebody’s “safe seat” that no one’s campaigning in?


    if you go here

    h ttp://

    and type in the figures from the EU elections I gave, and scroll down you can see all the seats changing, there is even a map to where they are in the UK

    – there are a lot of UKIP gains in the South West and East Anglia, but they are scattered gains all over the Uk

  17. So the last YouGov poll was pretty close, particularly on Labour and UKIP. It underestimated the Tories a little (as did most polls) and overestimated the LDs and Greens, but generally more accurate than Survation and Opinium, especially on UKIP.

    Result (so far)
    CON – 24; Labour -25; UKIP – 28; Green – 8; LD – 7
    CON – 22; Labour -26; UKIP – 27; Green – 10; LD – 9
    CON – 21; Labour -25; UKIP – 32; Green – 6; LD – 6
    CON – 23; Labour -27; UKIP – 32; Green – 4; LD – 9

  18. @ Origimbo

    The best prospects for UKIP are Con-held marginals, where they have shown good performance in the local elections in 2013/4. These results would give them evidence to present themselves as the main alternative to the sitting Con MP. Possible seats are all in the South and East of England. Examples from the recent Lord Ashcroft poll are Great Yarmouth, Thanet South and Thurrock.

  19. @ Daodao

    ”While no direct extrapolation is possible, the prospect of a YES vote on 18/9/14, which is the only factor IMO that could stop Lab winning the 2015 GE, is receding.’

    It really isn’t the ‘only factor’. Even on the basis of the Euro and local votes it is difficult to make a case for a Labour majority; and, while polls have been fairly static for the last couple of years the new factor is an improving economy. We don’t know exactly what effect this will have, but it is likely on the basis of past evidence to have some, given Labour’s already negative scores on economic competence. At best, I think Labour will be biggest party which would mean that it too would have to search around for coalition parties or form a minority govt

  20. A year ago or so I was wondering whether an ambitious through-going ideologue on the right-wing of the Tory PLP might decide jump ship.

    Mark Pack has made the point that LDs have always been hampered by a lack of policy making, having to rely on a couple of niche policies (one for each depending on whether they are targeting a Con or Lab seat) and the mood music (“tired old two-party politics”). Ukip has only one policy… I’ll assume they will drop hand-guns for all, NHS privatisation, a return of Pullman cars to the railways, possibly even the flat tax from their next manifesto.

    As I see it Ukip should now be on the wane as their financial backers return to Tory party for the general election. But if Ukip are to become a real populist force, rivals to Farage could be eyeing it as a useful vehicle.

  21. I went to bed with this looking bad for Lab but I wake up and London has made it look respectable.

    It won’t be long before Tories realise that PR will favour them with so many more actual voters in their safe seats. Then we’ll see a sudden change of principles.

    What does it mean for next year? Depends as always upon the marginals, and of course on UKIP not actually winning hundreds of seats across the country. The way the voters are clustered (Tories all live in one big village) will still favour Lab.

    Might help if Lab start to win some voters back between now and 2015! I still think Lab are in narrow majority territory but unless UKIP take loads of Tory votes without winning any seats it is now getting a close.

  22. What will happen in Newark? Momentum is with UKIP.

  23. 922nd!

  24. Anybody know what the council results were in Newark?

  25. @ NewForestRadical

    Improving economy! Fiddlesticks!

    The UK is still heavily in debt and most people are worse off than before 2008. The cuts to local services are still coming thick and fast. There may be a recovery in London and the South East for those who are already prosperous, in part because of the renewal of the housing bubble there, but it hasn’t percolated down or elsewhere.

    I meant by a Lab win that Lab would be at least the largest party and form the government in 2015, even a minority one. Only the loss of their Scottish seats is likely to prevent this, as Con are highly unlikely to improve on their 2010 result.

  26. 2004 euros vote share:

    Conservative 26.7
    Labour 22.6
    UK Independence Party 16.1
    Liberal Democrat 14.9
    Green 6.3
    British National Party 4.9

    Year later Lab got 35 and Con 32. Of course Lab were in gov then so it might indicate a Con boost next year.

  27. @nickp

    Clean sweep for Con, apart from a couple of Independents (CC 2013). I don’t know much about the Con candidate, but Roger Helmer sounds very traditional Tory (which of course he was until very recently).

  28. PS to my earlier post about the result and the polling – the Conservative vote was underestimated in all of the polls I mentioned, if only within the MOE. I wonder whether the GE polls underestimate it a little as well, although the local vote national projection seemed to suggest they are about right.

  29. I was going to comment on the relative Success of Labour and the remarkable changes in London at both Euros and Locals.

    However, I am too utterly depressed by results through out Europe to do so.

    The Success of Populist, Xenophobic, Nationalists parties of the right throughout Europe is akin to what happened in the 1920’s and 30’s and which led eventually to a War in which nearly One in Ten of all Europeans Died.

    UKIP’s success in the UK is reflective of this.

    This trend should concern every sane person alive irrespective of their political affiliation.

    The Best that can be said is that UKIP is the least offensive of these movements and reflects more a trend towards Casual Xenophobia and Nihilistic Isolationism primarily amongst White, poorly educated and parochial people rather than some of the far more nasty quazi Nazi versions succeeding abroad. They have at least put done with our own BNP version

    As such therefore I suppose we should be grateful for Farage’s success.

    I can’t think of anything else positive to say.

  30. @daodao

    Improving economy – if you doubt it look at the reduced unemployment, the job creation, increasing tax receipts, the GDP figures. The improvement in the economy cannot be denied by an objective observer. Some of the biggest beneficiaries are the unemployed who now have jobs.

  31. Really difficult to work out what this means. On the face of it, Tories have failed to top the poll in any region – the map (ex Scotland) is either red or purple. This suggests Tories hit harder by UKIP, and Labour can still retain their heartlands, while their main opponents struggle.

    However, of course it isn’t that straightforward. The simple fact that on Thursday 10% more people voted for UKIP in the Euro elections than in the locals might tell us something. This was the classic ‘give them all a kicking’ election, and the GE result won’t be anything like this.

    The key question will be how well the two main parties combat UKIP in their target seats. Byelections suggest Labour is better at this than Tories, but that’s not a given for the GE, although it must be said, UKIP still appear more of a challenge in blue areas than red.

    Labour seem to have done very well in London, and pretty well in Yorkshire and elsewhere in the North. Tories have performed less badly in the South East with a disappointing night for Labour. Does this greatly increase Cameron’s chances of a GE majority?

    I think UKIP are being overhyped, in terms of Westminster politics, but they will be GE players to an extent. I still think they will harm Tories more than Labour, but a how this works in terms of seats is likely to be decided by the underlying economic conditions and the state of the parties going into the campaign.

  32. Turnout was roughly half that of a GE.

    Any thoughts on how the “other half” will probably vote?

    Polling evidence?

  33. @Daodao

    Sure, there are still lots of problems economically, but it is almost indisputable that we will see a consistent level of growth up to May next year. This will fit with the Tories’ narrative – ‘we inherited a mess, we took difficult decisions, this is paying off”. In this context, Labour will find it very difficult to improve its position relative to the Conservatives on economic competence, and that is likely to effect the GE result. I am not saying I agree with the Tories’ narrative (I don’t), but neither do I agree with yours that the economy will not be a factor next year, and one that won’t help Labour.

    Thanks for the clarification on a ‘Labour win’!

  34. What do I take from the EU results. Labour are doing really well in parts of the country, where they have marginals to win. This backs up what Lord Ashcrofts recent poll indicated. If the election was held this Thursday, Labour should win a very small majority.

    But the general election is not this Thursday and we are not sure whether UKIP would maintain their vote. The Ashcroft poll indicated that UKIP would hold onto about half of their EU vote level i.e about 14%. So if the GE result was say Lab 35%, Con 34%, UKIP 14% & LD 10%, this would give seats L 328, C277, UKIP 0, LD 18. However, I think Farage and a couple of others would win seats for UKIP. The LD’s will probably win about 10 more seats due to their fortess strategy.

    The Tories have done much better than expected and Labour not as well in overall terms, But as I said, it really is only the marginals that count. There is no point piling up the votes in heartlands, if you are not winning over people in the marginals.

  35. @NickP

    Newark votes last night

    UKIP 10,026
    Con 9,641
    Lab 6,601
    LibDem 1,889
    Other anti EU 1,100ish

    (I’m eagerly awaiting the “Only the LibDems can beat the Tories here” leaflet)

  36. Good Morning All.
    NICK P.
    The figures you put up there for 2004 should make Labour people feel worried.

    Earlier on this thread mention was made of the SDLP.
    I think SF are likely to take their seats in a GE, so this will affect Labour’s chances of forming a rainbow coalition.

  37. @ ChrisLane1945 and NICK P.
    The figures you put up there for 2004 should make Labour people feel worried.

    Yes, they should – its exactly the point I have been making consistently over the least few weeks. Expect a Tory increase over the next year, probably enough to get them to biggest party.

  38. Oh my God.

    The Danish People’s Party (far right toppers of the Euro poll there) have a politician called Messerschmidt!

    All we need now is for a Front National MEP called “Stuka” to emerge..

  39. One of the satisfying things about last Thursday’s vote is how it makes EVERYBODY in the main camps worried.

  40. @ R Huckle

    ‘The Tories have done *much* better than expected’

    Really? Haven’t they done about as well, give or take the odd point, as the most recent polls suggest?

  41. As a bit of a Laugh I put these figures into the Electoral Calculus calculator it Produces Labour as the Largest Party and the Only Possible Government a Labour lead Coalition of Labour Libs and SNP/PC

    UKIP despite topping the polls get 69 Seats

  42. Right, my spindoctor hat on.

    Is this Labour’s best Euro result ever?

  43. @NFR,

    The Tories have (so far) done 2.7% better than the average of the final Euro opinion polls. Labour 2% worse, UKIP 3.3% worse, LDs 0.5% worse and Greens about 1.6% better.

    So, not a huge difference, but statistically significant.

    I suspect it is to do with the application of turnout filters – no doubt the pollsters will be studying and adjusting as we speak.

  44. “@ NewForestRadical

    @ R Huckle

    ‘The Tories have done *much* better than expected’

    Really? Haven’t they done about as well, give or take the odd point, as the most recent polls suggest?”

    Expected by me and I think there were some polls showing Tories on about 20/21%.

  45. The biggest story for me is the extreme differential between London (and similar places) and the rest of the country.

    Very comforting for Labour. I wonder if the Labour high command are secretly plotting to encourage a few million more BME immigrants to come and settle around the Tory heartlands….

  46. NICK P.
    When Chukka was saying that Labour never won the EU Elections under St TB he omitted to say that Labour was never in Opposition under TB when there were elections for the EU Parliament.

  47. chris

    Even so. Labour is vulnerable on Europe for a number of reasons, mostly to do with turnout. Anti-Europe voters tend to vote UKIP whereas not particularly anti stay at home.

  48. I can’t believe Labour voters on here are trying to give Labour credit.

    They came in second in England just and I mean just above the Tories.

    They are neck and neck with UKIP in Wales which is the strongest area in the UK for them at GE.

    They came in second in Scotland even with an SNP gov being in power for 7 years.

    No party except UKIP can be happy with last nights results

  49. Worst Tory election result ever. Worst Lib Dem result under PR ever. Greens made basically no progress. Labour made gains but couldn’t win. This has been a pretty awful set of elections for all of them.

    Will the wheels fall off UKIP’s car? Or will its momentum carry it across the FPTP threshold? The rise of a political party with its basis firmly in anger, disillusionment and scapegoating surely says some frank things about this country’s political discourse.

  50. Well wasn’t that a strange election

    London is an enigma, could it be that as there was a full council election (only place in the country) that it was actually more representative of true VI than any other region?

    I cannot believe people stilla dding tiogether Tory and UKIP votes as if they are one and the same. If you look at the numbers it is clear that UKIP have taken a protest vote from all other parties, and also hoovered up the ‘others’ such as BNP who have done well in these elections in recent years.

    Can we draw many conclusions for the GE, I doubt uit and any attempts from ‘pundits’ to do so have to be taken with a big pinch of salt.

    The main message is that there is a real discontent with all parties bubbling beneath the surface and this needs to be addressed for our future good. Also, I think we will see some problems in the LD shortls

    Allan C asked yesterday who would feel the most pressure after this election – I said then, and say now. Nobody apart from Clegg. All left to play for the Tories/Labour and will make a fascinating run up to to 2015

    UKIP have nothing to offer to the people who voted for them, unless they are really fixated on Europe (a much smaller cohort than their vote) although I expect their manifesto to be full of populist claptrap

    Was anyone else surprised to see the odious Neil Hamilton being treated as a serious politician last night on the BBC? It is almost like in a soap opera where someone’s past sins automatically seem to be forgotten after a few years….he was found guilty of ‘cash for questions’ …and Farage has the gall to say he is ‘different’

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