The weekly YouGov/Sunday Times poll is up here. Topline voting intention figures are a very normal CON 33%, LAB 37%, LDEM 8%, UKIP 14%. The rest of the poll dealt with Europe, Coulson and Iraq.

Dealing with Europe first, by 40% to 14% people thought Cameron was right to oppose Juncker, 46% of people said don’t know. On the other hand, 36% of people said it has probably damaged Britain’s ability to negotiate in Europe, 7% say it has probably helped. Note the fieldwork was done before the summit.

On Coulson YouGov asked how seriously people took Cameron’s error in appointing Coulson. 34% said it was a very serious error, 36% a fairly serious error, but no worse than many others made by politicians, 21% not seriously at all. Looking at the crossbreaks though is a salient reminder of why things like this don’t really make much difference to voting intentions – people see them through the prism of their pre-existing political views. 59% of Labour voters saw the appointment of Coulson as a very serious error, only 6% dismissed it as not being serious. 48% of Tory voters dismissed it as nothing serious, only 9% thought it was a very serious error. On the wider issues around phone hacking, by 53% to 33% people think the thorough investigation was worthwhile and 69% think the CPS was right to attempt the prosecution of Rebekah Brooks and let the jury decide, despite her ultimate acquittal. People are pretty evenly split over whether the investigations and prosecutions will make journalists behave better in the future – 44% think they will, 47% think they won’t.

Turning to Iraq, public opinion remains extremely negative towards Britain’s role in the Iraq war and its consequences. 59% think Britain and the USA were wrong to take military action against Iraq, 62% think it has increased the risk of terrorist attack against Britain, 48% think it’s made the world less safe and 40% think it has made the ordinary lives of Iraqis worse. 67% of people think that British “jihadists” going to Syria or Iraq to fight do pose a risk when they return to Britain, 17% think the risk has been exaggerated. 63% think Muslim community leaders in Britain should do more to prevent it, 61% think social media sites should do more to remove jihadists recruiting material.

There was also a Survation poll in the Mail on Sunday with fieldwork conducted on Friday (tabs here). Topline figures there were CON 27%(nc), LAB 36%(+4), LDEM 7%(-2), UKIP 22%(-1). The rest of the poll dealt mostly with Juncker, and again opinions are split largely along existing party lines – so 38% saw Cameron’s opposition to Juncker as a sign of strength, 36% as a sign of weakness… but 75% of Tories thought it was a sign of strength, 57% of Labour voters thought it was a sign of weakness.

140 Responses to “YouGov/Sunday Times – CON 33, LAB 37, LD 8, UKIP 14”

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  1. Lovely country is Costa Rica.

    No army despite being on the borders of Nicaragua. Very high environmental protection (just looked it up on Wiki and number 5 in the world), good life expectancy, health care etc. Can walk around everywhere without any hassle or fear of your life.

    Transport excellent- I prefer to do holidays independently but I hate back packing and that is easy to do in relative comfort in Costa Rica with shuttle (mini)buses (with the great slogan “really nice”) covering the length of the country. Rainforest, beach, volcanos, hot springs, birdies, turtles, crocs. And now a decent football team- what more could you want?

  2. @ Toonie

    “Yes apparently Sunday Times predicts Lord Ashcroft will say Labour would win 7 seats from Lib Dems”

    I think Labour would be disappointed with that if it were true. I know the big battleground is Lab v Con with Lab relying on ex LD votes- places where the LD’s got 15-20% vote share last time but I thought Lab would get 10 plus seats from the LD’s as well.

    Grateful as I am to the good Lord, I think his tendency to poll both ways in marginals (ie when we know there has been a swing to Labour he still polls Labour defences) does waste some an opportunity to drill further down. On the previous polls I’m not even sure that he polls the seats around the targets that would produce a Labour majority.

  3. Peter Cairns,

    I’m a “Young Outsider”, apparently.

    My high school reports could have told you that!

  4. ComRes marginals poll: Con 31% (-2) Lab 36% (+1) LD 7% (-1) UKIP 17% (-) O 8% (+1)

    Cameron wins on Statesmanlike, Intellogence and right policies but also most out of touch, and comes a narrow third in “someone like me”. Miliband does average across the board, Farage wins “Weirdest”.

  5. Mr N

    Thanks for that link.

    DC more “trustworthy” than EM is a bit surprising

  6. Farage wins ‘weirdest’?

    Really? Gosh what a surprise (not)…

    I cycled coast to coast across Costa Rica 2 years ago and agree it is a most beautiful country and what friendly people. So glad they are doing well in the WC

  8. mrn does it say how that poll of marginals would translate into seats?

  9. @MrNameless

    Thanks for the link to that ComRes marginals poll and whilst I remain suspicious, and doubtful, about the salience of a lot of these sub-question responses, this one did catch my eye:-

    “Two thirds (65%) of the public in the marginal seats say they will decide who to vote for based on which Party has the best policies on the issues important to them, one in seven (14%) say the Party with the leader who will make the best Prime Minister will get their vote.”

    Should we be surprised by that one in seven (14%) figure? I thought it might be quite a bit higher than that, to be honest. Enough to make a difference in marginal seats where the classic swing voter, so beloved of psephologists, lives in large numbers? To do so, I guess that there would have to be a proportion of voters currently saying that they will vote Labour, plus some DKs, who will swing to the Conservatives in May on the basis of them thinking Cameron would make the best PM. Or are those people already factored into the existing voting intention figures and, to some extent, the Cameron advantage/Miliband drag is already priced in? If so, then the potential for a late swing to the Tories based on the perception of the two party leaders is relatively limited, although I can see why quite a few Tory election strategists are hanging their hats on this “Prime Ministerial” factor riding late to their rescue next year.

    Fascinating stuff.

  10. Looks like another poll showing a minor wobble, but all these minor wobbles seems to be in Labour’s favour. When does a wobble become a drift?

    As ever in politics, reality doesn’t seem to impinge on the game, and it’s peculiar to see how Lab confidence appears to be draining, while their poll position strengthens. There isn’t any real sign of tightening as yet, and economic data as it affects voters is tending the wrong way in most of the key areas, so the inbuilt assumption of swingback isn’t something I would stake my mortgage on just yet.

    I think this is one election that is going to be genuinely interesting.

  11. Populus

    LAB 37 (+2)
    CON 33 (-1)
    LD 10 (+2)
    UKIP 12 (-1)

  12. this is a bizarre time for polling. the polls are all suggesting a slightly stronger labour lead, while the media narrative is still stuck on the “ed is carp” meme….labour are more split than they have been in a while, at the same time as the tories are more united.

    back in the real world, labour is still ahead…electoral calculus actually gave a stronger labour position this month than last, reflecting the slightly better polling for labour that we’ve had in the last few weeks.

  13. My resolution for this year is to be less cynical, but I do wonder about the causal direction between Lab’s poll figures and the “Ed is carp” media theme.

  14. It’s my resolution to be less cynical as well, but to be honest I don’t believe a word of it!


  15. @ Lefty,

    Your theory seems to imply they wouldn’t be running an “Ed is carp” theme if the Tories were closing the lead, which strikes me as somewhat unlikely. They were running “Michael Foot is carp” when the Tories were miles ahead.

    They’re not fussed about the polling. They just like complaining about party leaders, preferably Labour ones.

  16. @ Mr. Nameless and everyone,

    That ComRes sample is tiny (1000) and looks really pro-coalition (Nick Clegg on 25% for intelligent?), so I wouldn’t read too much into it.

    (Of course, I would say that, wouldn’t I, but a) ComRes and b) the samples in the Ashcroft polls are so much larger that when other marginal polls give us results wildly at odds with them (in this case the swing to Labour being ~2% instead of ~6%) I think we should view them with a degree of skepticism.)

  17. The climbdown from the precipice begins, as we start getting headlines about Cameron being willing to “do business with Juncker”.

  18. The word is


  19. You all sound like the sort of person who would say:

    “Oh dearie me!!!”

    before wittily adding

    “Pardon my French.”

  20. @Spearmint

    Rather more telling was the extent of reweighting of the raw ComRes sample. The aim was to get a sample evenly balanced between 2010 Con and 2010 Lab, that being the result for the 40 seats polled. But the raw sample instead found twice as many 2010 Con as 2010 Lab.

    The huge scale of reweighting suggests that there might have been something very odd about the initial sample, which reweighting could have had difficulty in compensating for.

  21. Yes Paul, we know, you only like your own sayings, or misspellings, just like it’s fine when you’re involved in the banter but have complained when others do it without you. Can’t be centre stage all the time you know!!…

  22. Jayblanc 8:23pm

    “Business Conservatives…Nationalist Conservatives”

    A useful distinction, thank you.

  23. Carefree
    It’s probly cos his knee is giving him the ole gyp !

  24. Oh, I’ve just had a revelation! Ed is carp = Ed is crap.

    Here I’ve been waiting for the follow-ups – as in:
    Chris is grayling;
    Alex is Salmon(silent letter);
    Nicola is Sturgeon
    Clegg is flounder…? maybe not.

  25. To give Cameron his due he did try really hard, against all the odds and all the advice, to get his way on the Juncker thing so I thought he deserved some praise – can’t remember where this comes from but it should be read in a suitably stirring voice – imagine Churchill or Thatcher.

    ‘His friends all said it couldn’t be done
    They said he’d never get through it
    But he tackled that thing that couldn’t be done
    And he couldn’t do it.

  26. carfrew

    Desperate stuff – in fact crap.

    I larf at many other posters witticisms.

    Continually referring to crap with an anagram doesn’t strike me


    1/ Necessary

    2/ Funny

    That is all: and I believe I am legally entitled to say so.

  27. @ Maura
    “To give Cameron his due he did try really hard, against all the odds and all the advice, to get his way on the Juncker thing so I thought he deserved some praise.”

    Rawnsley — adroitly — in yesterday’s Observer.

    “The genesis of [his] defeat can be traced back to 2005 . . .He [appeased] the right of his party by saying he would take the Conservatives out of the European People’s party [EPP] A few wise voices cautioned that exiling the Tories from the main centre-right grouping in Europe would cause trouble … Mrs Merkel, was baffled and cross. . . . Leaving the EPP not only excluded him from the group’s formal decision-making, it also cut him out of the less formal encounters . . . Had the Conservatives been in the EPP, it is quite likely they could have stopped the Juncker juggernaut ..”.

  28. Today’s Populus showing a 4% Labour lead looks like a reversion to the mean after that rather odd looking one last week showing the lead down to 1%. I don’t think it’s anything to do with recent the shenanigans in Brussells and at the Old Bailey

    In fact, I think this latest clutch of polls is telling us what many of us suspected and that is that the recent furores have had no real effect on voting intentions. It seems to be that no matter what you throw at these polls, they just won’t budge. Good economic news, Prime Ministerial pratfalls, Miliband photo-gaffes; you name it, the polls just move serenely on, unchanged and unruffled. A bit like Ol Man River, in fact.

    “He mus’know sumpin’
    But don’t say nuthin’,
    He jes’keeps rollin’
    He keeps on rollin’ along.”

    …….all the way to May 2015, perhaps

  29. Soz Paul, but it’s impossible to take seriously a continued convo on the matter with someone who pretends to be a dog who’s “oany won”. I’ll simply suggest it’s nice to let others bond over shared sayings, banter, experiences, etc…

  30. It’s also useful for board harmony, taking the heat out of things…

  31. carfrew

    Bond away.

    You could form a club.

    Anyway I promise to puke silently in future.

    By the way Daisie IS oany won and she is a dog, although we prefer “baby” ‘cos she’s OANY WON.

  32. carfrew

    “Soz Paul,”

    Is that the one that DOES mean “lots of love” ??

  33. All power, each tyrant, every mob
    Whos head becomes too large
    Ends by destroying its own job
    And works its own discharge

    “The Benefactors” Rudyard Kipling

  34. Ashcroft National Poll:

    CON 33%
    LAB 31%
    LDEM 9%
    UKIP 15%

    That’s out of line!

  35. I’ve been away in Sheffield, so may have missed something, but hasn’t David Cameron just destroyed his election strategy as far as Europe goes?

    He was in any case open to the objection from UKIP that there was no reason to elect the Conservatives so they could hold a referendum, as they have just spent 4/5 years in government without doing so.

    Now the defence by Conservatives that they would have a new mandate to “re-negotiate” is more or less destroyed by DC’s isolation in Europe, as mentioned recently on this board in connection with the Andrew Rawnsley article.

    [In case anyone makes an assumption, I am pro-Europe, and in fact would like more Europe, not less, but political integration is developing only slowly and I don’t think will be really on the cards until the time of President Nameless…]

    Honestly, I think DC’s best bet might be to call a referendum now for the autumn and spike UKIP’s guns. Fortune favours the brave.

  36. @ Maura,

    Clegg is flounder…? maybe not.

    I loled.

    But then, as Paul and/or Paul’s dogs have been explaining, my sense of humour is suspect…

  37. And yet again Ashcroft injects a note of randomness into the proceedings.

    I wonder what’s going on there. Con, Lib Dem, Ukip VI all look pretty standard, so where have all the Labour votes gone?

  38. The big question is will I become US President or President of the European Commission?

  39. On the polling on the phone hacking thing… More Ukippers than Tories think the investigation wasn’t worth it. And on whether journalism will change as a result, it isn’t that partisan. A few percent more Tories think things will improve, but overall there’s a roughly similar balance of optimism vs pessimism across the parties.

  40. New thread

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