This week’s YouGov poll for the Sunday Times is here. Topline voting intentions are CON 33%, LAB 33%, LDEM 7%, UKIP 16%, GRN 6% – as with Friday’s YouGov/Sun poll and the Opinium/Observer poll Labour and the Conservatives are neck-and-neck. Note that the poll was conducted on Thursday night and Friday daytime, so most of it will be before David Cameron’s statement on EU funding.

In a referendum on the EU 41% of people would vote to stay in, 40% would vote to leave. The small lead to stay in is pretty typical of YouGov’s recent polling on EU membership. David Cameron is most trusted to get the best deal for Britain from the EU – Cameron is on 26%, ahead of Nigel Farage on 15% and Ed Miliband on 12%. It’s probably a case of least bad, rather than a positive endorsement though as asked directly about Cameron’s handling of our relationship with the EU only 30% think he is doing well, 55% badly.

64% support the principle of putting limits on immigration from the EU, but they are more divided when faced with potential obstacles. If limiting EU immigration meant breaking EU law 36% think that the government should limit immigration anyway and break the law, 37% think they should not (made up of 22% of people who support EU immigration and 15% who oppose it but think the government needs to follow the rules). If limiting EU immigration was only possible through leaving the EU 41% think Britain should leave, 33% think we should not (made up of 21% who support EU immigration and 12% who oppose it, but would accept it if the alternative was leaving the EU).


379 Responses to “YouGov/Sunday Times – CON 33, LAB 33, LD 7, UKIP 16, GRN 6”

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  1. Amber

    I’m not going to comment on Johann’s capabilities. However, are you confident that re-running the election for her successor, in the same electoral college model, will produce an improvement?

  2. @hal

    Liked your post (8.57pm).

    I’m wondering what lies behind the phrase “uncontrolled immigration”?

    If immigration can be shown to be a good thing (or at least not a bad thing) then what is the control that is being lost? Obviously fears about miscegenation are a thing of the past, because it has been established that there is only one genus/race within humanity.

    Figures are something like one-in-ten children in the UK live in mixed families (families headed by one white-British parent and one white parent not of British origin included).

    I would guess (from polling) that up-and-coming generations as a whole have less of a problem with immigration, and perhaps benefit from wider access to higher education.

  3. @ Peter Cairns

    I just get a feeling that from a Westminster Labour perspective the attitude to Scotland hasn’t been so much meddling as indifference.
    ————
    I disagree. Neither meddling nor indifference is in any way a fair description.

  4. Bluebob,

    “A factory located not far from me (Suffolk) advertised a job vacancy in the local paper, the most important credential was to speak fluent Polish, apparently 90% of the workforce are Polish.”

    That’s amazing! Can you tell us the actual wording these factory people used? If not, what was the local paper? I’m sure we can find the ad on the net.

    It’s beyond belief!

  5. Amber

    “I disagree”

    Well, obviously!

  6. @Amber

    My reference to standing on the steps of St. Giles stands. JL and not DA ought to have been centre stage.

    But the underlying questions you point to need to be addressed – and thanks for your honesty in speaking about JL’s ability or otherwise.

    You know far more than I do about the internal workings of SLAB. You speak of how she didn’t/couldn’t interact with other people. But presumably Johann didn’t change character overnight upon being elected as Leader in Scotland. That then raises the simple question: Why was she elected Leader in the first place?

    The next question is less easy to answer: will JL’s successor really have control of all Scottish Labour (including MPs) or will that be dependent on the character of the person elected?

  7. These things are always sad on a personal level but it is clear that Lamont was out of her depth; perhaps there were no willing substantial figures when she got the job?

    This is uncomfortable for SLAB and GB Labour at present but the first necessary step towards aiming to minmise the damage at the GE in Scotland.

    Hopefully, there will be a contest with candidates with different views about the level of further devolution and about the SLAB/GB LAB relationship.

    As long as it is not vitriolic the high llevel of coverage in the Scottish media in itself could give a boost.

    Apologies if already said – these days I find it impossible to wade my way through the endless posts (Kudos to Carfew and AC and others for manageing to do so).

  8. @ Old Nat

    I’m not going to comment on Johann’s capabilities. However, are you confident that re-running the election for her successor, in the same electoral college model, will produce an improvement?
    ———–
    The method of electing a leader isn’t of the first importance. If you have several good candidates, you’ll get a good leader.

  9. Jim Jam

    “Hopefully, there will be a contest with candidates with different views about the level of further devolution and about the SLAB/GB LAB relationship.”

    That would certainly be interesting.

  10. CANDY

    He got 53% at the GE.

    Doesn’t work I’m afraid

    He is a popular MP-face it.

  11. Amber

    “The method of electing a leader isn’t of the first importance. If you have several good candidates, you’ll get a good leader.”

    I wouldn’t disagree with that – if every candidate is good.

    Though it didn’t work out that well for you last time, since the successful candidate that the process produced was someone of whom you have been very critical.

  12. I see the Greens are now important enough to be regularly included in the headline figures/ tweets.

    What level to they need to get to in order to join UKIP in the cross break analysis?

    For instance in trying to answer hoofs earlier question about how resilient the Green vote was, I wanted to go back to this Yougov poll

    http://cdn.yougov.com/cumulus_uploads/document/dra8m44o22/YG-Archive-Pol-Sunday-Times-results-101014.pdf

    That asked “Finally imagine that only the CONSERVATIVE party and the LIBERAL DEMOCRAT party had realistic chances of winning your local constituency at the next election – how would you then vote?”

    But as Westminster VI is only broken out into Con, Lab, LD, UKIP, it is hard to answer what happens to the Green vote on that question.

    I remember UKIP suddenly appearing in those headings a few years ago, but can’t remember exactly when or what level triggered that.

    But it looks like the Greens are approaching the level where it would be helpful to be able to understand them more, and include them there on all polls.

  13. I think that the problems with the Scottish Labour Party are simply a reflection of the failure to provide a UK wide solution to devolution. In this Labour are unfortunate to be the only one of the major parties with significant numbers of MPs in England, Wales, and Scotland.

    It makes no sense for a unionist party to have a fully devolved Scottish party until such time as the constitutional settlement for the rest of the UK, especially England, is resolved. When that happens we may see a rebirth (although it is entirely possible for the Labour Party to screw it up!).

  14. Listening to Radio 4 Westminster Hour – James Reed, MP for Copeland (where?) – talking about Scotland and showing a complete lack of understanding of reality.

    These people are still sticking their heads in the sand.

    It is ridiculous given the crisis that Labour are in, that no-one could be found to speak any sense on what is, in radio terms, a major political programme!

    Reed peddles the line that it is ‘the settled will of the Scottish people’ that Labour’s ‘one nation’ strategy is the thing they want.
    There is no ‘settled will’ of the Scottish people. IMO there is the agreement to get on with things (new powers etc.) for the time being and see where that takes us – which is quite different. The idea that the No vote was an endorsement of Labour’s ‘one nation’ line is ludicrous. IMO

    This sort of Westminster Bubble attitude is not going to get Scottish Labour anywhere. IMO

    Sorry if that’s a bit OTT, but really!!

  15. Given the constraint above, we can look at what happens to headline figures of Green vote based on different scenarios.

    The headline voting intention on that poll was 5% Green.

    That drops to 3% when the questions is

    “Imagine that only the LABOUR party and the CONSERVATIVE party had realistic chances of winning your local constituency at the next election – how would you then vote?”

    or
    “Imagine that only the LABOUR party and the LIBERAL DEMOCRAT party had realistic chances of winning your local constituency at the next election – how would you then vote?”

    but remains at 5% when the question is
    “Finally imagine that only the CONSERVATIVE party and the LIBERAL DEMOCRAT party had realistic chances of winning your local constituency at the next election – how would you then vote?”

    So Hoof, the answer to your question is it depends on who stands a chance of winning in that seat.

  16. Richard

    Wholly agree with you about the need to include other parties in the crossbreak analysis.

    It wouldn’t be hard for the pollsters to do, and it’s a wee bit arrogant for them to decide what data we are allowed to see.

    If the sample is very small (like the LDs currently are), then we can decide what weight we give to its usefulness..

  17. Another interesting thing you get from the ONS is that net migration of non-EU citizens into the UK, 160,000 in the year to March, is about twice as large as the net migration of EU citizens including Brits, 80,000, or somewhat larger than the net figure for EU citizens excluding Brits, 130,000.

    Now considering that we have had a government dedicated to cracking down on non-EU immigration for the last four years, the figure is still bigger than EU immigration! As the government has discovered, this is the minimum figure consistent with family ties and business needs.

    So even if we left the EU and didn’t join the EEA, what chance would there be of reducing net immigration from the EU very much anyway? Why is everyone obsessing with the EU when non-EU immigration is greater?

    http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/rel/migration1/migration-statistics-quarterly-report/august-2014/sty-net-migration.html

  18. JOHN B

    “Are we to expect any polls tonight?”
    ________

    Not tonight. Boats are all tied up at Gda?sk due to the weather.

  19. @ Newhoust

    I will dig out some older papers and post word for word if you would like.

    From memory it was even more blatant than how I worded it in that only Polish people were to apply.

    The factory is a chicken processing plant, so it is very much low paid un-skilled work.

    Also Advent, who have a factory in Suffolk that produce the baby bottles and accessories only employ Eastern Europeans apart from management and above.

  20. Copeland is northwest Cumbria – 25 miles grom the border at Gretna. Disagree with Reed by all means, but get the facts before accusations of not knowng anything about Scotland. By not knowing the constituency it’s you that’s displaying the igonrance here.

  21. @ Catmanjeff

    thanks
    ———————
    Scotland: at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Opinion_polling_for_the_next_United_Kingdom_general_election_in_individual_constituencies we now have a record of 9 opinion polls, plus the SNP’s calculation of ‘weekly averages’ for 5 weeks.

    BTW also, on the main “Opinion polling for the next United Kingdom general election” wikipedia page, there is also a section on “Detailed poll results” which at the moment stretches back to early April this year giving Nationalist, Green & BNP shares, as well as LD/Lab/Con/UKIP (which are also given in a longer sequence on that page).

  22. Bluebob

    Are you referring to this story in the Daily Mail?

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1257784/Biggest-Asda-meat-supplier-excludes-English-speakers-instructions-given-Polish.html

    Sounds remarkably similar to what you were talking about. Are you sure it was a local paper you saw the advert in?

  23. Norbold (on Carswell’s election)
    “Especially those who said our current Tory MP’s done nothing for us for the last nine years so I’m voting for UKIP this time.”

    :-) :-)

    Oh yes, there speaks the voice of canvassing experience.

  24. @Richard

    An interpretation of that result is that Green supporters can see little distinction between the Conservatives and Clegg’s LDs. Many are willing to vote Labour to keep either the Conservatives or Lib Dem out, but would see little point in voting anything other than Green when they have only the Cons or LDs to choose from.

  25. @Bluebob:

    This one?

    “The advert for work at Supreme Nutrition Ltd insisted that prospective factory operatives speak Polish and ”must be able to understand instructions from the Polish supervisor”.

    “It advertised a salary of £5.80 an hour and was posted earlier at Jobcentre Plus in Sudbury, Suffolk, earlier this month for a site on an industrial estate in nearby Acton.

    “But now staff at the government-run Jobcentre Plus have been forced to suspend the advert after receiving a string of complaints from job seekers.

    “The Department of Work and Pensions, who are responsible for Jobcentres, said the case would be investigated for possible discrimination.”

    It’s dated October 2009.

    “Under the 1976 Race Relations Act, unless there is a genuine need for a worker to speak a particular language it is against the law to require that they should do so as a condition of employing them.’”

  26. John B @ 10.28 pm

    Having someone from Copeland not fully understanding Scotland on Radio 4 was very much the same as having the BBC Scotland`s top correspondent sent there to report on Radio 4 after the bad shootings two or three years ago.

    That the BBC was so ill-equipped in Cumberland that it needed someone to rush down from Glasgow was a sad reflection on its treatment of peripheral England.

    And it is just another indication of why devolution in desperately needed in England.

    We are one state that needs subsidiary governments of roughly equal size. EVfEL and a federal set-up of four with England 85% getting just one vote of four votes, would be ridiculous.

    So I back the Gordon Brown and John Reid line of limited devolution, and am totally against EVfEL.

  27. Howard

    “Especially those who said our current Tory MP’s done nothing for us for the last nine years so I’m voting for UKIP this time.”

    I know I’m an old cynic, but i have difficulty believing that some posters are relating personal experiences when they relate stories that have had widespread coverage in the press.

  28. It’s just breathtaking to me that Labour aren’t at least 15 points ahead of the Tories. They really are a mess. They’re in opposition, with UKIP taking alot of the tory votes, everyone effected by cuts, and the Libdems nowhere – Labour should be near guaranteed re-election not neck and neck.

  29. UK Labour think they won the referendum they funded it, sent up troops, came up themselves and even made Vows. They are annoyed that Scottish Labour are not more grateful.

    There are many camps in Scottish Labour but a crude division into two camps would be:.

    The first camp want say ‘We won independence is dead, the settled will is the union, devolution as long as it doesn’t dilute our status at Westminster’. That faction are fairly right wing I,e Trident, End free prescriptions, tuition etc and tough on welfare, include most Westminster MPs their supporters.

    The second faction wants more devolution for Holyrood and more autonomy for the Scottish party. This faction is also more left wing wanting more socialist policies – they also want a period of introspection where Scottish Labour re-evaluates it’s purpose and it’s relationship with London.

    A period of introspection is not ideal so close to the GE and the speed of the leadership contest – new leader by December 13th – suggests that the second faction had lost for the time being.

    (The problem Labour have with a move to the left is that a lot of left wingers have already left the Labour Party so the people remaining tend to be pro-WM unionists with fairly right wing views.)

    So right-wing, anti-devolution faction will win because UK Labour are confident that despite the problems at the moment come the GE they can pull out all the stops again and get the Scottish Labour MPs te-elected

  30. David Welch

    Well, we’re all against EVIL, and in favour of Mom and Apple Pie.

    But what about the governance of the various bits of the UK? :-)

  31. @David Welch,

    Would a regional government for the North (or the North West) mean that the BBC would have more reporters based in sparsely populated rural areas? How would that be funded? Would the regional government subsidise the BBC to base reporters in market towns? Which budgets would be squeezed to free up the cash to do this?

    There’s a reason there’s a lot of reporters, and reporting, in the SE of England. There are huge numbers of people living there. Copeland is at the northern end of a long, thin, relatively unpopulated region, with the vast majority of the NW population being at the southern end of the region.

    It’s a bit like the discussion a couple of days ago about Cornwall. If you’re small, you don’t get the resources of somewhere that’s big. Because resources follow population. For obvious reasons.

  32. @Phil Haines

    Yes, I would agree for that except when you look at the tables for the Conservative/LD question, it shows that 4% of the Labour vote actually moves from Labour to Green in that scenario, so it is probably more complex than that.

    Unfortunately we can’t see what the Green vote does in each scenario. Anthony, can we ask nicely for a column with Greens in it, or are their sample sizes still too small that it would just add to the general cross break confusion?

  33. IAIN C

    “It’s just breathtaking to me that Labour aren’t at least 15 points ahead of the Tories. They really are a mess. They’re in opposition, with UKIP taking alot of the tory votes, everyone effected by cuts, and the Libdems nowhere – Labour should be near guaranteed re-election not neck and neck”
    ______

    On what basis?

  34. @Richard

    The rational explanation is that a small chunk of the 2010 Labour vote would move to the Greens when they think that there’s nothing to be lost by doing so, presumably those who would otherwise vote Labour if the opportunity was there to keep the Conservatives or Clegg’s LDs out.

  35. Phil Haines

    “The rational explanation”

    Alas that has little to do with how people actually decide to vote. If you look at personality inventories, then “Rationals are very scarce, comprising as little as 5 to 10 percent of the population”.

    Lots of us would like to think we are are “rational” but few of us are.

  36. Re my post on rationality.

    Obviously I am rational and none of the rest of you are.

    Sorry about that, but that’s just the way it is. :-)

  37. @Phil Haines

    Yes, but that is 4% of the 2015 Labour vote, not the 2010 Labour vote. Maybe they would be Green voters, but because they are in a Cons/Lab marginal they are voting Labour in the headline figures and revert when asked the squeeze question?

    Confusing lot these voters…some of them include their tactical vote in their headline voting intention, and some of them only play their tactical card when asked ‘in your constituency’ or a different squeeze question. I pity the pollsters trying to make sense of it all, especially with all the new up and rising parties.

  38. For another perspective on the resilience of the Green vote we can look at the Comres poll of the 40 most marginal Lab/Cons constituencies. (25 currently have a Cons MP, 15 have a Labour MP, so no Green MP’s in this poll)

    http://www.comres.co.uk/polls/ITV_News_Marginal_Constitencies_Political_Poll_Sept2014.pdf

    Surprisingly the Green vote holds up well here, but so does UKIP – see page 7, it is at 5% (Labour 41%, Cons 30%, UKIP 17%, LD 6%, Green 5%)

  39. So if the Tories really are level with Labour (and surely we need at least a week’s more polling to know) then chances of an outright Labour majority looking low to me based on historical swing back to government party in last few months and increasing focus on Ed vs. Dave. Having said that UKIP presence may make all historical shifts meaningless, and so am sure this will go to the wire and hung parliament must be more likely outcome.

    Tories would need 3 things to happen to win outright
    – UKIP to move back below 10%, which will only happen if Dave can deliver something meaningful on Europe (increasingly unlikely)
    – Ed to continue to be as bad as he has been as we move into the campaign (and surely he can only get better)
    – Continued economic good news (although not too much, as need to be able to say there is still much work to do)

    Be interested to hear whether people agree, and also what 3 things people believe Ed would need to win

    Hmmmm.

  40. @ John B

    My reference to standing on the steps of St. Giles stands. JL and not DA ought to have been centre stage.
    ————-
    Why? I thought you were against undue deference & leadership cults – or am I mixing you up with another commentator?

  41. @ John B

    But presumably Johann didn’t change character overnight upon being elected as Leader in Scotland.
    ———–
    Or maybe she did. People can & do change according to circumstances.

  42. @ John B

    The next question is less easy to answer: will JL’s successor really have control of all Scottish Labour (including MPs) or will that be dependent on the character of the person elected?
    ———–
    Of course the leader won’t have “control” of all Scottish Labour. Labour is a political Party, not a prison. MPs & constituency MSPs are accountable to their electorate not the Party. They choose to work as a team within the Party framework, not because somebody has been given “control” over them. Surely that’s the same in all political Parties.

  43. OMG are we still going on about Miss Lamont’s departure?

    It’s not like the Krankies have split up!!

    …………Hang on!!

  44. @ Old Nat

    Though it didn’t work out that well for you last time, since the successful candidate that the process produced was someone of whom you have been very critical.
    ———-
    Alex Salmond. Was he a good leader? A good leader all of the time? He never did a thing which was deserving of criticism? The time never came when he wasn’t the best person to lead the SNP?

  45. Amber

    It’s fascinating to see how defensive you are. Must be something to do with winning – then discovering you have lost, I suppose. :-)

    Nytol.

  46. @ Old Nat

    It’s fascinating to see how defensive you are.
    ————-
    It’s fascinating to see how your own & John B’s point of view is entirely skewed when you are looking at the Labour Party.

    Suddenly MPs & MSPs being under “control” is appropriate in your view; & leaders being given their due & never criticised is the right & proper way for MPs, MSPs & Party members to behave – from your perspective.

    And I’m not defensive; I’m bemused by the strange way in which you & John B think that political Parties should operate.

  47. CANDY
    “Part of the reason there are so many migrants here is because the EU isn’t working properly, and desperate people are voting with their feet, and who can blame them.”

    A substantial proportion appear from recent ONS stats to be desperate to get appropriate returns from having, as entrants to the UK job market, higher qualifications than UK first time applicants, and relevant experience.
    What are the prospects on this evidence of EU immigration leading to the UK becoming the most highly skilled, qualified and entrepreneurial country on the globe? The question for our party leaders must be, given the gains to the economy, and all of us from this competitiveness, would the electorate respond favourably to appropriate alternative responses to that of breaking away from the EU to prevent immigration beating out UK job seekers.
    How does Labour make attractive measures such as “pre-distributive” skills development and prolonged training or other alternatives to job entry, in reforms in the UK native labour force, now needed from the long term plan, while the competitiveness and benefits of our increasingly diverse immigrant work force stack up?

  48. Cameron is in the press, on our TV’s looking strong over the extra EU budget payment so I’m not surprised the Tory vote is up.
    Can it not just be the more your seen the more your vote goes up?
    Does anyone know if Labours vote goes up the more Ed is seen? Or am just clutching at straws?

  49. Good early morning everyone, this sunny Half Term Monday.
    PETE:
    Hello to you. I agree that DC has come over strongly, which helps to explain the beginning of the pro Con swing back.
    I think the Lab vote would rise if Ed asked Tony Blair to return, to the Labour Party, and become the leader again.
    Do you agree that this is not very likely to occur?

  50. I don’t see how you can have two leaders of anything.

    Someone has to be in charge.

    Who do Scottish Labour MPs look to as leader?

    When Devo+ is agreed ,I hope some newspaper starts an investigation into the workload of Scottish MPs .

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