ComRes have a new poll of Rochester and Strood out tonight that shows UKIP with a solid lead. As far as I can recall it’s the first ComRes by-election poll this Parliament. Like all constituency polls it was done by telephone, and with a healthy sample size by constituency polling standards of 1500.

Topline figures are CON 30%, LAB 21%, LDEM 3%, UKIP 43%, GREEN 3%. The only previous Rochester & Strood poll was by Survation at the start of the month – that showed a nine point lead for UKIP. Obviously one has to be careful about direct comparisons between polls from different pollsters using different methodologies, so it would be wrong to draw too many conclusions about how opinion might have moved between the two polls (differences could be down to methods), but it certainly doesn’t show any obvious sign of the Conservatives eating into UKIP’s early lead.


705 Responses to “ComRes show UKIP 13 points ahead in Rochester”

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  1. That seems a helluva big lead. Must have made a number of people a few bob knowing that poll in advance.

  2. Not bad for Labour here.

  3. A little surprised. While the Ukip lead is not unassailable in byelection terms, how likely are they to garner 7% reverse swing?

  4. Com Res Report on the Rochester & Strood poll here

    http://www.comres.co.uk/poll/1296/rochester-and-strood-constituency-poll.htm

  5. When are the demographic crossbreaks going to be available showing the latest SNP membership figures in Rochester?

    :-)

  6. “The poll, conducted by telephone between 17th and 21st October, reveals that four in 10 (39%) people who voted Conservative in 2010 now plan to vote UKIP on 20th November, as do 39% of 2010 Lib Dem voters and 30% of 2010 Labour voters. Fifty-seven percent of people who did not vote in 2010 say they intend to vote UKIP.”

  7. That should be…”how likely are they [the Tories] to garner 7% reverse swing.”

  8. RAF

    The group least likely to change their mind are UKIP voters (88% said they are “very” or “fairly” sure they will vote for that party). Eighty-three percent of Conservative voters are sure of how they will vote, as are 75% of Labour voters – although one in four (24%) Labour voters say they ‘may change their mind’.

  9. “Not bad for Labour here.”

    From @CL1945.

    Once in a lifetime.

    Worth framing for posterity.

  10. Changes…

    Con -19
    Lab -8
    LD – 15
    Ukip + 43

    That’s pretty stunning from Ukip.

  11. Changes…

    Con -19
    Lab -8
    LD – 13
    Ukip + 43

    That’s pretty stunning from Ukip.

  12. Oh I give up on the figures. They’re both wrong. Please delete, Anthony.

  13. YouGov/Sun poll tonight – Labour lead by two points: CON 31%, LAB 33%, LD 7%, UKIP 17%, GRN 6%

  14. CROSSBAT11

    “When are the demographic crossbreaks going to be available showing the latest SNP membership figures in Rochester?”
    _______

    Well spotted..AW have you got this info handy?

  15. Sun Politics tweet

    “YouGov/Sun poll tonight – Labour lead by two points: CON 31%, LAB 33%, LD 7%, UKIP 17%, GRN 6%”

  16. Allan Christie @ CROSSBAT11

    “AW have you got this info handy?”

    I think the Strood Nasal Penetrators keep their snot numbers concealed in their hankies.

  17. I know we shouldn’t carry comments over from previous threads but this comment does relate to this thread.
    ……….

    STATGEEK
    @mrnameless / Allan

    (RE: Rocherster & Strood) – Mike Smithson Tweets:

    “Mike Smithson [email protected] 18m18 minutes ago
    28% of those backing Mark Reckless in the UKIP-donor funded ComRes poll were non-voters at the 2010 general election.”
    Make of that what you can / will.
    _____

    Well I make that very bad news for the Tories if they were hoping Tories would switch back to them.

  18. @oldnat – re your link to the Steve Forman extradition row.

    Agree that it shows a madness over the immigration issue, but for me, an additional insult is the fact that the regulations boil down to judging someone’s value merely by their earnings.

    There are a good number of people in this country earning many times the £31,000 that SF needs to earn in order to get his visa that I would happily see placed on a boat to anywhere. To me, they are worthless.

    The expression ‘knowing the cost of everything and the value of nothing’ springs to mind.

  19. OLDNAT

    Oh dear too much info…. ;-)

  20. I’m interested with by election polls whether there is any truth in the notion that early polls are more reflective of the ‘true’ situation, whereas the final results are usually distorted by an enhanced bandwagon effect.

    I first pondered this in the H&M result, when a clear Lab lead ended up a very tight win, and in R&S I’m equally interested in the Lab vote. As others have said, I would have thought in the current circumstances, 21% looks OK for them, but I expect it could be a fair bit lower come polling day. The question then becomes which is the most relevant in terms of the GE.

  21. I just came across the lyrics:

    “Sitting on a sofa on a Sunday afternoon.
    Going to the candidates’ debate.
    Laugh about it, shout about it
    When you’ve got to choose
    Every way you look at this you lose.”

    Portent of things to come in 2015? :))

    (Simon & Garfunkel – Mrs. Robinson)

  22. Statgeek

    Good, aren’t they?

    I did a referendum spoof of that – but it’s far too rude to post on a family site like this. :-)

  23. @AC

    28% said they were non voters in 2010. I wonder how many did actually vote.

  24. CHRISLANE1945

    “Not bad for Labour here”
    ________

    Well I’m not surprised at that when the Labour candidate is going around the streets signing..

    “Autumn’s snap is in the air
    Like the crisp crunch of a ripe apple.
    I want to gather them up from the trees, take them home in bushels
    Make apple compote,
    Apple strudel,
    No I want apple Strood”

  25. Tories busy promoting two candidates atm.

    Returns from the primary will give some clue as to whether this tactic has generated enthusiasm, or on the contrary, contributed to the impression of a party in disarray.

  26. RAF

    @AC
    “28% said they were non voters in 2010. I wonder how many did actually vote”
    ________

    That’s the big unknown but turnout might give us an indication when the by-election is held and maybe then we can see where that 28% came from.

  27. Billy Bob

    “By sending so many politicians to campaign in Rochester and Strood, the Conservatives are coming across as desperate”

    Agree : 66% Disagree : 30% DK : 4%

    might tend to support that hypothesis.

  28. I don’t buy R&S is UKIP ‘s 271 target seat.

    It’s a coastal seat in SE England which until recently had Tory MP

  29. YouGov/Sun poll tonight – Labour lead by two points: CON 31%, LAB 33%, LD 7%, UKIP 17%, GRN 6%

    I mean looking at this what can one say? First one to 33¼% wins?

  30. Allan C
    That’s a bit of an ask for the LDs

  31. From OLDNAT’S link

    “The poll, conducted by telephone between 17th and 21st October, reveals that four in 10 (39%) people who voted Conservative in 2010 now plan to vote UKIP on 20th November, as do 39% of 2010 Lib Dem voters and 30% of 2010 Labour voters. Fifty-seven percent of people who did not vote in 2010 say they intend to vote UKIP.”
    ________

    If this was replicated at the GE then what would the seat count look like?

    Absolutely astonishing statistics!!

  32. Ewen Lightfoot

    “That’s a bit of an ask for the LDs”

    Well getting within three of that looks a possibility for them – 3¼% ?

  33. FPT

    I live in a seat that has historically been an ultra marginal but for the last 15 years has increasingly become a no contest one.

    A shame really as it would be a bellwether constituency anywhere else in the UK.

  34. @ Allan Christie – to answering you it won’t happen at GE, because it’s a GE!

  35. Allan Christie

    “If this was replicated at the GE then what would the seat count look like?”

    Probably like every other calculation based on extrapolating a by-election result.

    Quite astonishing, and unrealistic.

    I do wonder, however, if this phenomenon in England “the mother of all Parliaments” according to John Bright, may reflect the old lady looking at how well her kids have done, and becoming increasingly pissed off with being constantly screwed over in her menage a trois by these bloody men!

  36. Simon

    It’s a coastal seat in SE England which until 2010 had a Labour MP, and a left-winger to boot. The suggestion by CL that 21% is “not bad” for Labour is the opposite of the truth, and I say that with personal regret. If Labour come third in this seat it will be hard to conceive any circumstances where they can win the next GE. It’s not just the Cons who should be throwing the kitchen sink at a seat with a very average socio-economic profile, and many struggling commuters. Lose this badly, Ed, and it could be curtains.

  37. @Welsh Borderer – thanks. I agree however bad it is for Tories – in many ways it worse for Lab. They are opposition and should be winning this seat if they have any chance at GE.

  38. “The noble Brutus has told you that Caesar was ambitious.
    If that were true, it was a terrible fault, and Caesar has paid for it terribly.”

    All politicians must pay the price for ambition or its lack – perhaps David Miliband in the last government should have seized his moment and maybe the last Labour government was cursed by Browne’s lack of ruthless ambition. The Conservative Party never quite got over either the means of displacement of Heath nor the subsequent defenestration of Thatcher. clegg was born on the tide that first washed-up Menzies Campbell after personal tragedy had sunk Charles Kennedy… carpe diem….. it now seems – unless Labour has a Bob Hawke moment – the general election parameters are set and nothing very much more may gel until the election begins next March.

    UKIP; SNP have both thrived in the time’s primordial soup of discontent. From the current mess of potage it is far from clear who ever wins will enjoy even as much political authority – let alone as much good will – as the current coalition after 2010.

    The main parties as political coalitions cling together like warm toffee in the summer sun – but if a blast of arctic electoral wind chills them to their core vote their brittle mass may simply splinter apart.

    For both the governing parties there is little to do but wait and hope but Labour if it owns ambition to be the party of government it may first have to find the courage to be a party of regicide. History teaches us the Labour Party has seldom owned such political ruthlessness about its leaders but like the times who knows who may rise to a once in a lifetime occasion?

  39. Alec

    Once we’ve deported the House of Lords, then we can get serious about removing the scroungers from the UK.

  40. Just for interest (or perhaps not – whatever turns your handle)…

    I have created a CUSUM chart of Con, Lab, LD and UKIP for YouGov polls in 2014. Also I have done the same for Con + Lab VI.

    Please note that essentially since Douglas Carswell announced his defection and by-election, all parties have been losing VI except UKIP, except for the Conservatives who have managed a minor blip post-conference before falling like the rest.

    The Con + Lab VI has fallen since that point too.

    Perhaps that moment of defection will prove to be a long term game changer?

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/0BzTTW1ecy-NDNmhjNl8tRHRXWWM/view?usp=sharing

  41. John Murphy

    “The main parties as political coalitions cling together like warm toffee in the summer sun – but if a blast of arctic electoral wind chills them to their core vote their brittle mass may simply splinter apart.”

    Like the metaphor! Beautifully constructed.

  42. Catmanjeff

    “all parties have been losing VI except UKIP”

    Your apology for omitting the words “in England” after “parties” is duly accepted. :-)

  43. 57% of people who did not not vote in 2010 intend to vote for UKIP???

    It may happen in November (though I’d be surprised if a quarter of that 57% actually turned out; by-election turnouts are normally LOWER than in GEs). In 2015? Not a chance!

  44. @Oldnat

    My apologies.

    Part of me that regrets Scotland’s bid for freedom was not successful. Not in a glad you are gone way, but in a joyful ‘you are free way’.

    :-)

  45. Strange people can become councillors (and every party later discovers that they should have “ececuted” them at the time of selection!)

    This one happens to be a Tory.

    http://www.itv.com/news/2014-10-22/tory-councillor-sorry-for-saying-execute-travellers/

  46. He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named (here at least) is rather cross at Ed because he thinks he will be clobbered by the mansion tax.

    Poor dear.

    http://politicalscrapbook.net/2014/10/hampstead-residents-launch-humanitarian-appeal-over-mansion-tax/

  47. Catmanjeff

    :-)

  48. Phil Haines

    I didn’t know that Ruth Davidson couldn’t be mentioned here. Surely ther’es somewher she can be recognised as existing?

  49. @JohnMurphy

    “The main parties as political coalitions cling together like warm toffee in the summer sun – but if a blast of arctic electoral wind chills them to their core vote their brittle mass may simply splinter apart.”

    I always enjoy your posts and it’s reassuring to see someone use almost as flowery imagery and language as I do! I can almost hear Sir Lawrence Olivier quoting your toffee analogy during an 1970s Oscar Awards Ceremony acceptance speech. :-)

    I detect a kindred spirit.

    As for the gist of what you say about the state of the two main parties, I agree entirely, although I’m not sure the removal of Miliband, which I think you imply Labour should contemplate, would prove to be the panacea to their current ills. I have misgivings about him, but he’s fortunate to be around at a time when mediocrity abounds and his rivals in other parties wallow in the same general public opprobrium.

    In that environment, he could still prevail in May 2015. If he does, rather as Rafael Behr contends, I think he might prove to be a surprisingly good PM in the likely political and parliamentary dogs breakfast that will confront him.

  50. Crossbat11

    ” I think he [Miliband] might prove to be a surprisingly good PM in the likely political and parliamentary dogs breakfast that will confront him.”

    I suspect you may well be right. It’s often a mistake, I think, to confuse an election-winning asset with someone who can actually govern, or vice-versa.

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