The monthly ComRes telephone poll is out tonight and has topline figures of CON 30%(nc), LAB 32%(-3), LDEM 7%(-1), UKIP 18%(+4). Changes are since the last ComRes telephone poll, just before the European election.

Meanwhile the daily YouGov poll for the Sun has topline figures of CON 35%, LAB 37%, LDEM 8%, UKIP 12%. The two point Labour lead there is the lowest that YouGov have shown for about a fortnight, but again, not beyond the normal margin or error for an average lead of four points or so.

Two polls showing a reduced Labour lead of two points, plus the Ashcroft poll showing a Tory lead. There will be a temptation to interpret this as a “Juncker effect”. On the other hand Populus’s poll this morning had a four point Labour lead, the changes in ComRes are month-on-month, so don’t need to be related to the last couple of days and there’s really nothing here yet that couldn’t be normal sample variation. For now I would’t read too much into it.


66 Responses to “ComRes and YouGov both show 2 point Labour leads”

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  1. ComRes should change its name to Comfusing Results.

  2. YouGov/Sun poll tonight – Labour lead reduced to two points: CON 35%, LAB 37%, LD 8%, UKIP 12%

  3. You have to laugh .

    These polls are like the Monty Python 16 Ton weight

    lol

  4. @ Tony Dean (FPT),

    I think the Ashcroft polls are so volatile because they’re phone polls. This means

    a) The sample has to be relatively small, because even Lord Ashcroft doesn’t have infinite money, and

    b) the sample is probably more variable than in the online panel polls, because it’s whoever picks up their phone. Anthony may correct me on this but I doubt YouGov draw names from their panel entirely at random- they probably do some of their demographic weighing even before they send out the poll, so that they’re making sure to get roughly 50% men, 50% women and so on.

    A phone poll can’t do that, so for any given sample size it is always going to need more weighing and that can throw up some wacky results.

  5. I’m not in a position to dispute the accuracy of the Ashcroft poll – I just don’t understand it – and would genuinely like someone to explain to me how you can have a poll which gives a lead to a party whilst also showing that only 25% of those asked wanted them to form the government – against 32% who wanted the opposition to form the government.
    The only logic I can think of is that people said they were going to vote for a party who they didn’t want to win.

    I’ve got to be missing something!

  6. That said, both Ashcroft and YouGov are showing a bump in the Conservative vote- 33% is quite high for Ashcroft and 35% is the highest the Tories have been with YouGov in ages.

    Might be a coincidence, but we might be seeing a real bump. I was all set to dismiss Ashcroft’s Juncker speculations, but YouGov have Ukip on 12% which suggests that the Tories have recovered some voters from them to climb to their current peak, so maybe people are aware of this story after all…

  7. @Spearmint

    Yep, though that doesn’t necessarily mean that online polls are better of course.

    Though the pollsters must be satisfied enough that weighting can smooth over any sampling difficulties it must be harder to get certain groups to participate in online polls – in particular the older and less engaged, as well as those with less time on their hands. Somebody who isn’t at all interested in politics might go through with a phone poll and not put the phone down but is unlikely to bother with an online one. Many of these won’t vote and so won’t effect the accuracy of polling, of course, but there are also many disengaged who will passively vote for a particular party come the GE and that might be missed by an online poll.

    With this being the first election cycle with quite so many online polls I’d imagine that the jury is very much still out.

  8. @” so maybe people are aware of this story after all…”

    eh ? !-it was impossible to avoid it.

  9. @Spearmint

    I remain unconvinced of a Juncker effect. It is just a story that, particularly whilst the World Cup and Wimbledon are on, I can’t see anybody who isn’t a politics junkie showing much interest in.

    That said, I guess it is possible as the veto showed previously that seeing coverage of DC acting on the world stage ‘batting for Britain’ sets off more positive triggers than him acting on the home front managing a party that many see as ‘out of trust’ and the ‘party of the rich’.

  10. @Spearmint,

    On the other hand, the ComRes phone poll has UKIP on 18%, +4, apparently a record. Summat weird is afoot.

  11. @ Maura,

    Well, the Labour 32% is easy- give Labour the 31% from their own VI and another 1% from the Nats/Greens/Ukip, and they’re there.

    The real mystery is the 8% of Tory voters who apparently don’t trust them to govern alone. Maybe they’re tactical anti-Labour voters in Lab/Con marginals? Or just Europhilic Tories- if I were Ken Clarke I suppose I’d check that box.

    @ Colin,

    According to Populus’s salience polling, no one noticed it. I guess everyone was distracted by the football?

  12. Most of today’s polls would seem to point to a hung parliament. So either the current coalition will continue or it’s Ed and Nick.

  13. New comres for Independent

    Lab 32(-3), Con 30 (nc) Ukip 18 (+4) Lib 7(-1)

  14. @ Mr. Nameless,

    On the other hand, the ComRes phone poll has UKIP on 18%, +4, apparently a record.

    I think I have solved this mystery.

  15. After 2 – 3 weeks of Tory disasters and bad news they achieve one of their highest VI. It’s becoming impossible to understand these polls.

  16. The Ashcroft poll had Labour in the lead by 1 before turnout weighting. Also, it had more 2010 LibDems going to Con than to Labour- which I find relatively unlikely. On that basis, I think the parties are neck and neck, which is what we have been seeing for a while. But unlikely Con is in the lead.

  17. Would be amusing to see Labour “Do a MacDonald” on Clegg and make him PM in a coalition on the basis that people don’t like Ed.

  18. @Spearmint

    Yes, it’s the Tory vote I don’t understand – although I suppose it’s possible that there are more Ken Clarke types out there than I expected – cloned Ken Clarkes now there’s a thought.

  19. @Spearmint,

    I voted Tory in 2010 (shock, horror!) despite feeling a lot of sympathy with the LDs. I am Eurosceptic but otherwise at the liberal end of Conservatism. I was quite pleased with the Coalition, because it (in theory at least) more closely resembled my politics than a pure Tory government would.

    I would probably count as someone who will (probably) vote Tory in 2015, but would (probably) prefer a continuation of the Coalition to a pure Tory government.

  20. Neil A,

    Yeah I’ve met and spoken to a few Coalitionists – almost entirely liberal Tories who don’t want a hard-right government so much as a centre-right one. The problem is at least some will have to vote LD to get another coalition!

  21. Not much point voting LD in Plymouth. In fact in my constituency not much point voting anything. Safe Labour seat, in good years and bad (ever since the departure of Dr Owen at least).

  22. Well it is becoming clear how the conservatives win the next election. Stand up to Europe. Both with the veto and now with Junker we are seeing a surge in Tory fortunes.

    With Nigel Farage having sowed the fields of discontent “it is all Europe’s fault, immigration, housing shortage, no jobs for locals”, and having succeeded in convincing a sizable part of the electorate, the natural beneficiaries are the Tories who are closest to UKIP in policy. UKIP can’t win in FPTP, once that becomes clear most of the UKIP vote will pass to the Tories in the general election next year. Cameron just needs to keep up the Farage act for another 12 months sticking two fingers up to Europe.

    The only danger is that he isolates the rest of Europe, but in the past that has been a good thing because they only listen once there is a credible threat that the UK leaves, then they offer concessions. And Cameron will need those concessions to start to undo the damage after 2015 to keep us in, which anyone sensible knows needs to happen.

    Once again democracy loses. Russell Brand is right, voting is a waste of time. It is too easy to manipulate the masses.

  23. @ Neil A,

    That’s valid.

    I would have preferred a Red-Yellow coalition to a Labour majority government in the post-9/11 era. Or so I thought at the time- now that we know the Lib Dems in coalition do nothing to protect civil liberties or oppose Middle Eastern warmongering I don’t suppose it would have made much difference.

    @ Richard,

    I hope the Conservatives hire you as their election strategist, I really do.

  24. “Surge” – hmm, not seeing it.

  25. This does tend to confirm two suspicions I’ve had for a while: firstly that whenever the EU is in the news, UKIP get an upsurge in the polls, no matter who is talking about it.

    The other thing is that maybe all the possible switchers from the Conservatives to UKIP have switched, and the only increase UKIP can get is from Labour (lets face it, their potential gain from anywhere else is limited).

    The corollary of this is that perhaps the Conservatives aren’t going any lower, and the UKIP maximum potential vote is within sight (ie, what it is currently plus a bit more from Labour).

  26. Two polls showing a reduced Labour lead of two points, plus the Ashcroft poll showing a Tory lead. There will be a temptation to interpret this as a “Juncker effect”.
    ______

    I put it down to the “Butlins effect” A lot of the Labour VI will be lapping it up with the Redcoat Shows at Butlins.

  27. Peter Bell: “After 2 – 3 weeks of Tory disasters and bad news they achieve one of their highest VI. It’s becoming impossible to understand these polls.”

    “It’s the economy, stupid.”*

    *Possibly.

  28. @Richard

    ‘Both with the veto and now with Junker we are seeing a surge in Tory fortunes’

    Hmm. An increase of acouple of % in one poll is not exactly compelling.

  29. A bit random, but I’ve just stumbled across this gem from four years ago:

    http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2010/06/07/100607fa_fact_sides

    Final sentence on page 1:

    ‘As if to underscore the point, ESPN, which will be televising the World Cup in the United States, has selected four commentators to announce the games; three of them are British and one is a Scot’

    I don’t think #facepalm does this justice..

  30. I think Europe has the capability of being an election changer.

    I get the impression Cameron feels passionately about keeping the uk in the EU but not a federal Europe. Passion is something we rarely see from him. I think it could change people’s perception of him.

    It could blow up and make him look stupid….I thought that happened at the weekend but apparently not.

    It could galvanise the UKIPers back to the Tories.

    The risk is that, to me, both labour and the Tories have have European policies that are a bit of a fudge which could very easily be exposed.

  31. Latest YouGov / The Sun results 30th June – Con 35%, Lab 37%, LD 8%, UKIP 12%; APP -21

    In this Yougov poll-

    The Lab score and crossbreaks are pretty typical. The reason Lab score is only high 30’s rather than 40%, is the poor rention of the 2010 vote, – this one to UKIP 6% Greens/Nats/Others 5%.

    This is a recurring issue with Lab at the moment, although where these 15% to 20% ex 2010 Lab voters go to varies from poll to poll.

    The slighly unusual point is the Cons crossbreaks. Cons have upped their score form 33% to 35% because

    2% more of their 2010 voters have returned to Cons from UKIP and 1% more of 2010 LD have joined the Cons, but 1% of 2010 Lab voters have returned to Lab – 2% + 1% – 1% = net 2%

    i wonder if there is correlation between this increase in Con vote and the large number of questions about the EU in the same questionnaire – It would obviously remind people of EU news and what David C had done.

    We shall to wait until tonight to find out, when I assume there will not be more EU questions in the new yougov poll.

  32. “We shall to wait until tonight to find out, when I assume there will not be more EU questions in the new yougov poll.”

    ———–

    Well according to some, the EU issue is going to be kept live all the way to the election. Reflecting this, there could be EU questions in every poll!!

    (….maybe there should be an EU approval rating…)

  33. @ Billy Bob, OldNat, and Roger Mexico

    I never gave you a quasi-final update on the HBO Series District 33, where the primary took place nearly 4 weeks ago today. It’s good enough though since results weren’t finalized in the state until today.

    Ted Lieu (D-Torrance) will be the great Henry Waxman’s replacement in the House. Or he’s very likely to be (he finished in second place behind the Republican, Elan Carr, but is almost certain to win the district and hold the seat in November). He narrowly edged out Wendy Greuel, who finished in third place. And finishing in a very close 4th place (she wasn’t far behind Ted or Wendy) was Independent candidate and licensed joyologist Marianne Williamson. For my part, the candidate I voted for received a whole 1.4% of the vote. Yes, I’m a contrarian. And this proves it.

    Greuel spent a LOT of money on the race and despite entering with name recognition, earning lots of endorsements, and, I must say, working the district very hard, she failed to make the runoff. Greuel’s team was very confident heading into election day and they were crushed by the defeat. It is a hard loss for her. Though, I’m not ready to say she’s done politically. If anyone could pull a Nixon or Moonbeam political comeback, it’d be her.

    Lieu won basically through attrition. He was unknown in most of the district but he had the largest base. When Greuel put out a last minute attack against him, it brought him down but it didn’t help her either, instead votes went to the licensed joyologist Williamson in 4th place and narrow 5th place finisher Matt Miller. Both of them far outperformed their election day totals to their vote-by-mail counts. What this leads me to believe is that both of them had last minute momentum coupled with bad field and had Grueul and Lieu started going after each other a week or two earlier, there might have been a massive upset in the 33rd.

    If the 33rd is the conscience of America, this isn’t a very good omen for the US. I say that because Lieu has not impressed me during this campaign and he’s not a solid replacement for Henry. I’m still voting for him but there’s something about him I just don’t like.

  34. @Carfrew

    ” there could be EU questions in every poll!!”

    Oh no!! i hope not, i will be suffering from ‘euroquestion- phobia’

    But do you think there is something in my theory – all those EU questions effecting some responders answers to the main voting intention question?

  35. It’s the UKIP vote in my ( very ) humble opinion.

    UKIP down 2 points , Conservatives up 2 points !

    So , and here’s the $64,000 dollar question :

    What will the UKIP vote be on Election Day ?
    Will the UKIP vote hold up at it’s current dizzy heights ?
    Will those ‘wavering’ UKIP voters go back to the Tories to stop Miliband ?

  36. Spearmint,

    “The real mystery is the 8% of Tory voters who apparently don’t trust them to govern alone.”

    I can think of a few Tories like that… No-one in particular…

    One might think that the Tories having to work with the LDs (a) reduce the awfulness of the Tories on civil liberties (including gay rights) and (b) potentially create a more effective deficit-cutting coalition because they can spread the pain across both spending cuts and tax rises.

    Then again, the saying “Be careful what you wish for” applies: I imagine that the same sort of Tory wouldn’t like a Tory coalition with the DUP or UKIP.

    Also, some of those Tory voters may come at it from an opposite angle and think that a Tory-UKIP coalition would be best for getting an EU referendum etc.

  37. @SoCalLiberal

    Well, Henry Waxman endorsed Ted Lieu I suppose.

    Going by photos, partner Betty Lieu would appear to have to have the charisma, plus expirience as a California deputy attorney general… could they become power couple to watch?

    Was looking at a Wendy for Governor bumper sticker on Ebay last night… though things don’t be looking to good for her atm. Demographics should to be breaking the GOP hold on Texas, but Dems need to crack the turnout problem first.

  38. @Richard
    “Both with the veto and now with Junker we are seeing a surge in Tory fortunes.”

    Yes, I think you’re right that being seen to battle for the UK against the EU seems to help the Conservatives. Even in this case, where doing ineffectually has left the UK isolated and demonstrated impotence.

    “Would you support or oppose holding a referendum on Britain’s relationship with Europe within the next few
    years?” Yes 63%, No 18% in this poll. Miliband is increasingly on the wrong side of opinion on this salient issue.

  39. If Texas goes Democrat surely the Republican Party is completely dead? Still throughout its long, slow demise since 2006 it’s managed to lash out wildly enough to do some damage so we might still have fireworks. It makes me glad I operate in the British political system.

  40. Voting intention qs are always asked first, so it is impossible for them to be influenced by questions later in the survey

  41. @ Billy Bob, Old Nat, and Roger Mexico

    I should give you though the secondary installment of this season finale of HBO’s District 33. If the 33rd Congressional District is the conscience of America, then the overlapping 26th State Senate District is perhaps the conscience of California. And that race turned out in a shocking manner that almost no one predicted (save for two individuals and me….sorta). A runoff will be held between Ben Allen and Sandra Fluke, both of whom are Democrats.

    Here’s what’s amazing about this runoff. First, no one predicted it. Nationally, political observers assumed Fluke had it in the bag given her name recognition gained in 2012. None of them had ever heard of Allen. Locally, most activists didn’t think Fluke had a chance and thought Allen might have a chance at coming in second place. Allen finished first, Fluke finished second.

    But second is their respective ages. I believe this will be the first general election where both candidates were Generation Y (born between 1977 and 1997). This is important in a number of respects. Younger Americans are dealing with financial stagnation that is unprecedented in recent times. And the political response has been one of disconnect (Democrats) or making things worse (Republicans). And the response by commentators is to simply ignore the problem or malign young people. There was an article last October in the New York Times declaring “you’re not that special” complete with stick figure drawings (seemingly ignoring those who are drowning in student loan debt, unable to access capital for new businesses, and unable to locate stable, goodpaying work).

    And when it comes to representative democracy, there are few in office who care about or know the concerns that so many young people in office. Of those few Millenials who are in elected office, most either come from (a) wealthy families, (b) big political names, or (c) both. They’re disconnected as well. It’s not easy to get elected for Millenials because there is a great deal of bias and discrimination. “They’re too young”, “they don’t know anything”, “it’s not their turn!”. Why, my two Democratic Millenial heroes who unexpectedly got elected to Congress in 2012……one defeated a convicted war criminal and certifiable lunatic…..by two thousand votes……and the other defeated a badly behaved incumbent who had clearly seen the onset of senile dementia…..by four percent. The bias is real.

    So it was in this atmosphere of malignment, disconnect, and disaffection that the voters of West Los Angeles would buck the trend, say no to common wisdom, and toss convention into dustbin. Again. Not only is this an all Generation Y runoff between two liberal/progressive Democrats, neither Allen nor Fluke come from wealthy families or famous political families.

    I’m practically giddy.

  42. “Voting intention qs are always asked first, so it is impossible for them to be influenced by questions later in the survey”

    Thanks Anthony

    so any voting changes due to EU events would have to be because of news information

  43. PHIL HAINES

    @”“Would you support or oppose holding a referendum on Britain’s relationship with Europe within the next few
    years?” Yes 63%, No 18% in this poll. Miliband is increasingly on the wrong side of opinion on this salient issue.”

    He is-on every crossbreak in that question in that poll.

    I wonder too, whether his “tone” was right in his attacks on DC -calling a British PM who falls out with the EU “toxic” hardly chimes with public attitudes to Brussels.

    And complaining that DC was “unable to persuade” , when his own S&D group wasn’t “persuaded” by his stated dislike of Juncker’s candidacy , simply smacks of opportunism.

    An interesting article in today’s Times about EM’s central team & office, mentions a variety of internal critics-including the phrase “all tactics & no strategy”.

    It does seem odd, that in the middle of a difficult period for DC, and with a Labour OP lead of some permanence, the noises off from Cruddas & others are critical ones.

  44. @Spearmint.

    I haven’t looked too closely at the methodology for the Populus salience polls but I do remember a salience of 9.2% for the European elections (after turnout was 34%).

    This suggests the question is not “what have you noticed” but “what have you noticed most.”

    This makes the salience poll less informative than some contributors here are inferring.

  45. @FP

    “But do you think there is something in my theory – all those EU questions effecting some responders answers to the main voting intention question?”

    ———–

    Well I suppose, those experienced in being polled, might be anticipating what they are gonna be asked about, which might in turn influence them on the VI question, but that’s maybe pushing it a bit…

  46. “It does seem odd, that in the middle of a difficult period for DC, and with a Labour OP lead of some permanence, the noises off from Cruddas & others are critical ones.”

    ————

    Don’t most party leaders enjoy noises off at regular intervals? When was the last time it didn’t happen?…

  47. In case you missed this Alec :-)

    http://www.markiteconomics.com/Survey/PressRelease.mvc/a7cf7600aa4e4125b7e58b397c4a065a

    Rebalancing certainly seems to be underway.

    With Prof John Curtice saying that “As ever, it is about the economy, stupid. ” is they key factor in the Independence Referendum VI, Cons must retain some hope that it will be in May 2015 as well.

  48. “Miliband is increasingly on the wrong side of opinion on this salient issue.”

    It won’t be a particularly salient issue at next year’s election. Europe will be well down most people’s list of concerns.

  49. EZ Manufacturing PMI for June, on the other hand, looks awful:-

    http://www.markiteconomics.com/Survey/PressRelease.mvc/d5693f89c80d4c249248adbe9f5bf744

  50. COLIN
    “calling a British PM who falls out with the EU “toxic” hardly chimes with public attitudes to Brussels”

    Agreed, especially, by Jingo, when public understanding of the role of the EU in relation to British interests is of their foisting surplus Romanian and Bulgarian populations on us and restricting what the WI can bake and sell in the Parish hall.
    No wonder the Tories get a bounce when the EU’s whole unfathomable intrusion in our national interests and way of life been identified as led by a man called Juncker, gallantly opposed by a very Horatio, standing proud and lonely at the gates.

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