The monthly ICM poll for the Guardian is out tonight and has topline figures of CON 31%(-2), LAB 32%(+1), LDEM 10%(-3), UKIP 16%(+1). Changes are from ICM’s poll a month ago which, as you’ll note from the changes, showed a Tory lead. As we’ve seen in the other polling series that showed the Tories ahead or equal last month (Ashcroft, Populus and YouGov), Labour have now clawed back ahead and ICM shows the same – though with a lead of just one point things remain extremely narrow.

The Liberal Democrat score of 10% is not that bad compared to the figures they’ve been receiving in polls from other companies, but ICM normally give the Liberal Democrats their highest scores, so for them this equals their lowest score since way back in 1991 (the Guardian write up refers to it as ICM’s lowest ever for the Liberal Democrats. This isn’t the case, ICM were responsible for the Lib Dems lowest ever score of 3% back in 1989, but this is the lowest ICM have ever shown for them since they switched to phone polling in the 1990s.

The question also asked leader job approval ratings, finding drops for all three leaders. David Cameron’s net rating fell back into negative territory (-5, after +2 last month), Nick Clegg’s rating falls from minus 21 to minus 37, Ed Miliband’s from minus 25 to minus 39. George Osborne’s approval rating is now plus 6, outperforming all the others.

108 Responses to “ICM/Guardian – CON 31, LAB 32, LD 10, UKIP 16”

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  1. @ Crossbat: Yes, but I don’t have the power!

    @ Roger Mexico: Interesting. What I’m curious about is what happens, in the event of a No vote, to SNP Westminster vote share and how that affects everyone else…

  2. ” Ed Miliband’s from minus 25 to minus 39″

    Blimey even the penguins in Antarctica would struggle with them figures.

  3. Drunk Hour begins in eleven minutes.

    Fill yer glasses.

    I’m off to kipsville – the footy is crap.

  4. Chrislane,

    I recall that in the early years of this Parliament you quite regularly pointed out that Conservative Governments – Feb 74 excepted – invariably won a second term in office. Can we take it that you are now a good deal more doubtful that such an outcome will actually occur in 2015?

  5. On the subject of the Referendum, ComRes have done a rather odd poll on it for ITV Border for their area – the local authorities Scottish Borders and Dumfries and Galloway. As you might expect from the most Anglo and Conservative part of Scotland, the result was heavily against: Yes 23%, No 62%, DK 14%.

    But there are several strange things. Firstly and most obviously no political weighting at all has been applied. Now I know I’ve expressed reservations about how this has been done by other companies, but no one is suggesting that such a heavily political issue should have no such weighting at all. In addition the sample seems to be less Scots-born than it should be (71% where the Census gives the combined areas over 76%) and the split between the two areas is wrong as well.

  6. Well I watched the footy anyway.

    I thought Shatov was crap for Russia and should have been subbed earlier.

  7. @Carfew

    New thought for Thorium! Gerald Celente says it’s the way to solve the nuclear power-Iranian wrangle… so not just good for Mars but still think renewable makes far more sense.

  8. mrnameless
    “Anyway, tonight’s poll. Guess it’s not a Lib Dem recovery after all”
    Yes, the LDs on 10% looks more like an outlier for YG than the LDs on 6% last Weds was (YG record low, iirc).

    UKIP+Tories+LDs+Lab combined down 1% – so is that Greens up, other others up, or rounding? I’ll have to wait till the morning to find out.

  9. Remember ICM predict what the actual vote would be based on current support not what the current support is.

    As there can’t be a GE baring very unlikely Westminster votes it really means predicting what the result will be at the GE should support as measured in this poll remain unnchanged.

    Like many I always respected ICM who were the first polling company to react to 1992 and introduce method changes but I do wonder if their methods are fit for the ‘Coalition’ realities and a strong 4th party (UK wide).

    Movement/trend on their numbers is the only thing we can look at imo and even then being monthly heightens the impact of moe.

    Still they join with the others in suggesting Lab slight improvement over the cons in the last few weeks.

    Final thought 63% Cons + Lab no chance of that.

  10. Smaller parties in today’s YouGov –

    SNP 4
    Green 4
    BNP 1
    Other 1

    Public opinion of all three party leaders looks absolutely dire.

  11. (‘main’ party leaders that is)

  12. Rosieanddaisie

    Your post aimed at pressman -“It just seems to me like a rather silly and meaningless thing to say.”

    I’ll explain. Pressman believes like I do that in 2015 when faced with electing a new Government the Public will choose a Government who has a track record of improving the economy rather than one which rightly or wrongly is perceived to have been at least partially responsible for the worst economic crash for 100 years.

    Not silly or meaningless at all, just our opinion which you clearly don’t like. Why not just say you disagree and explain why.


    Because it amuses me.

  14. @TOH

    “…..has a track record of improving the economy”

    That’s your view, not mine. Can’t discuss, twould be partisan to do so.

  15. @JimJam

    “Remember ICM predict what the actual vote would be based on current support not what the current support is.”

    Did you not mean this?
    “Remember ICM predict what the actual vote would be based on PAST support not what the current support is”

  16. TOH

    Your post aimed at pressman -”It just seems to me like a rather silly and meaningless thing to say.”

    I’ll explain…….’

    What R&D said was, ‘”Labour supporters are playing for the whistle ”

    How does that work in what we call “normal life” ?”‘

    Your explanation of what you think Pressman meant doesn’t explain the phrase at all. At least, as a Labour supporter myself, I’m still none the wiser. Can you tell me what it is I am doing that means I am “playing for the whistle”?

  17. @Phil Haines:

    I think he has confused this with the ICM Wisdom Index published in the Telegraph which appear to be a conventional opinion polls but aren’t.

  18. @Colin

    Thank you for your excellent summary of UK productivity from the BOE yesterday June 17th, 2014 at 10:18. .

    I willl save it and keep it if you don’t mind. Your summary is far more accessible than the BOE original.

  19. @Norbold:

    “Playing for the whistle” has a specific meaning and means playing safe to maintain the same score (either win or draw) at full time.

    Pressman is implying that Labour are playing it safe in order to stumble over the line (to mix sporting metaphors).


    He was using a football metaphor and i have already explained. Why not ask Pressman to clarify it further for you?

  21. FV

    Feel free.

    It was an interesting paper from BoE-though they still appear not to have an explanation for a fair bit of the gap…………..assuming it actually exists ?? :-)


    Agreed, it would

  23. @Norbold:

    “Playing for the whistle” has a specific meaning and means playing safe to maintain the same score (either win or draw) at full time.

    Pressman is implying that Labour are playing it safe in order to stumble over the line (to mix sporting metaphors).

  24. @Norbold:

    For some reason I can’t get my explanation of “playing for the whistle” through the auto mod so I’ll try this:

    It basically means playing it safe and hoping that’s sufficient.

  25. @PRESSMAN: “Labour supporters are playing for the whistle and hoping the crowd doesn’t wake up in time”

    What can the crowd do? Invade the pitch and stop the game?

  26. RogerH

    Go back to my post that Pressman supported and you will see the question facing the crowd if it wakes up. We both think a majority will vote Tory but it’s only in our opinion.

  27. Thank you everyone, but I’m still none the wiser.

    Give me a similar football metaphor for what the Conservatives are doing then.

  28. @GRAHAM: “I recall that in the early years of this Parliament you quite regularly pointed out that Conservative Governments – Feb 74 excepted – invariably won a second term in office.”

    Although first they had to win a first one. And the last time a Tory government increased its share of the vote was 1955, before the voting age was reduced to 18.

  29. ALEC
    “Reports abound that Cameron has all but conceded he will lose on Juncker.”
    What may be more important for the Tories is the evidence in this defeat of the long-term impact of their moving out of the main right wing block in the EU Parliament, and this their limited ability to get support for reform of the EU structure and of the EC budget and powers.

  30. Norbold

    Sorry if you can’t see it, I can’t help you. No doubt if you do as I suggested and ask Pressman he will make it absolutely clear. He was just agreeing with my earlier post and using a football metaphor to do so.

  31. @RogerH:

    Pressman’s implication is that a crowd can turn hostile if a team is too cautious.

    However, it not sensible to over-analyse a metaphor (the electorate aren’t literally going to start booing or riot). Whether you believe he is right or wrong the point he is trying to make is clear.

    I am not a massive football fan but I knew the phrase “playing for the whistle”.

  32. @RogerH – Lest we forget, it is now over 27 years since the Conservatives last won a majority that lasted for an entire Parliament.

  33. Losing on Juncker if that is so is a prestige blow, of course, but as Sir John Major said on the radio this morning Britain may be compensated in some way. I’d guess that the British nominee to the commission (widely believed to be Andrew Lansley) will get a decent portfolio and that other European leaders will remain open to the reform agenda.

  34. JACK

    I certainly think there is more water to go under the bridge yet-not least the actual vote in the Council of Ministers.

    If Juncker is appointed, the biggest potential downside I see for DC is Farage’s open goal ie-EU reform institutionally impossible as confirmed by Juncker’s appointment-therefore DC’s Referendum a waste of time & meaningless. The only solution for UK is to leave…etc etc.

  35. Also of interest (to me, off sick today and bored) – the last person to win a majority, and hold that majority as PM for over four and a half years was Clement Attlee in 1945. The last Conservative to do so was Stanley Baldwin in 1924, who lost the subsequent election. The last Conservative to do so and win the subsequent election was the Marquess of Salisbury in 1895. No Conservative Prime Minister of the UK has ever won a majority from the House of Commons, held that majority as PM for over four and a half years, and won the subsequent election.

  36. @ChrisGreen

    That is an interesting stat though clearly the reason for that is that when polls have looked good after four years in the past elections have generally been called.

    By talking about PMs rather than parties you also exclude the Tories in 1987

  37. I think Labour will refer it to the third umpire and ask for for video replay, DC to be sin-binned, GO to be red-carded, a penalty for LBW and a high tackle from Govey plus May to be fined for wearing aggressively coloured shoes and sledging her own side.

    And anyone who doesn’t understand that load of drivel clearly doesn’t get metaphor.

  38. “Also of interest (to me, off sick today and bored) – the last person to win a majority, and hold that majority as PM for over four and a half years was Clement Attlee in 1945.”

    Atlee also increased his share of the vote in 1951, with 48.8%. However the Tories won 26 more seats despite only getting 48.0%.

  39. TOH

    Just for your benefit.

    In footy matches it is possible for TEAMS to try and play for the whistle.

    It is NOT possible for supporters to do so [to clarify, this is ‘cos they are not actually involved in playing the game.]

    Ergo my question:

    “what does it mean in real life to say Labour supporters are playing for the whistle?”

    As I correctly remarked its silly and meaningless.

    As is contributing to a polling forum, being cheered when the Tories poll figures improve and then, at the same time, saying the polling figures are unimportant.

    Its not anyone’s support for another party that I disapprove of, its lack of logic in debate.

    So, to assume the sporting analogy was aimed at the Labour hierarchy, it actually makes even LESS sense, as they have know for 50 months when the next election will be and are bound to have worked their final campaign with that in mind.

    Whilst that doesn’t mean their tactics will work just a brief moment’s thought would tell you that they don’t want an election today. And I imagine the same is true for the other parties.

    So yes, I understood the analogy but

    [1] it was aimed at the wrong group and

    [2] its simply wrong. Political timetables are not like sporting events.


  40. @Jack Sheldon – Yes, my previous comment had noted that the last Conservative term-long majority was in 1987. I then thought it’d be interesting to see what was thrown up by restricting it to PMs rather than parties, and found Attlee. I then thought about Conservatives only, and found Baldwin. I then thought about Conservatives who won the subsequent election, and found the Marquess of Salisbury. I then thought about Conservatives who did all that from the Commons – and found no one!

  41. On the idea of analogising politics to football, it is not the entire Parliament that is the 90-minute match, it is the election itself: the preceding Parliament is more like the training time between matches. I think that all football coaches and trainers would try to time their players’ peak fitness for match day, and not before. If the Labour hierarchy are indeed waiting so as to peak at the right time, then that strategy is supported by the football analogy.


    So….was the Bacon Butty photo-opportunity like playing Rooney on the left?

    Or have I misunderstood?

  43. Rosieanddaisie

    Thanks for your response. Frankly I was just taking exception to your rudeness to another who posts on this forum. Taken in context his post was neither silly nor meaningless. I thought we were all trying to be polite to each other even when we have greatly differing views unlike other sites I could name. If you disagree why not say so and say why.

  44. I think Pressman must be advocating a popular uprising in the event of the match producing the wrong result.

  45. Chris Green,

    interesting history, but you’re comparing apples and oranges. Before 1911, we had 7 year parliaments, so the Marquis of Salisbury called an early election in 1900, after 5 years, having won a clear majority in 1895; the tories had lost the 1892 election.

    It was customary under the Septennial Act (7 year parliaments) to hold elections after 6 years, with a year to run, so to speak, so there were elections in 1868, 1874, 1880, 1886 (there were also elections in 1885), 1892. The 1900 election was unusual in that it occurred 5 years after the previous election in 1895. At the time people said Salisbury was exploiting national feeling as a consequence of the Boer War. It was known as the khaki election. The next election was held at the beginning of 1906.

    After we had 5 year parliaments, it was expected that most parliaments would last a year shorter than the full term, as had been the case in the 7 year parliaments. Governments would run the full 5 years, if they were unpopular, but generally a successful government would seek a new mandate after 4 years. The National Government which won by a landslide in 1931 secured their second term in 1935…

    After the war, governments which were confident of re-election tended to seek a mandate after 4 years, hence the tories in 1955 and 1959, 1983, 1987 and Blair in 2001 and 2005. It didn’t work for Wilson in 1970, but he was widely expected to win that election. Terms which last more than 4 years terms generally end in defeat- viz. 1964, 1979, 2010- the only exceptions have been 1950 and 1992, but both parties had 3 figure majorities at the previous election which were considerably cut at the next election.

  46. @Rosieanddaisie:

    To some extent your post is questioning the substance of pressman’s argument – I will leave that debate to you and pressman.

    I will just comment on the metaphor. Politics is different to football in that the supporters, to varying degrees, can be considered part of the team. Unpaid activists are an example but anyone who has tried to convince a friend or family member to vote in a certain way can be considered part of the team.

    Are the hierarchy being cautious? Many have argued that they are and have “a 35% strategy”, others say differently, but I will leave that debate to you and pressman.

    It is best not to over-analyse a metaphor but his point was clear whether he is right or wrong.

  47. DJ

    What a sensible chap you are-you should contribute more often.

  48. So should you Colin.

  49. DJ

    Colin expresses my sentiments exactly.

  50. TOH

    I am sorry you found the words “silly” and “meaningless” so offensive [Snip. Let’s leave it there, rather than get into a silly back and forth]

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