The weekly YouGov/Sunday Times poll today has topline figures of CON 31%, LAB 32%, LDEM 7%, UKIP 18%, GRN 6%, continuing YouGov’s recent trend of showing a wafer thin Labour lead (tabs are here.)

For the first time in YouGov’s polling Ed Miliband’s net ratings on if he is doing a good or bad job have sunk below Nick Clegg’s. 18% now think Ed Miliband is doing well as Labour leader, 73% badly – a net figure of minus 55. Nick Clegg’s figures are 18% well, 72% badly, a net figure of minus 54.

In a referendum on EU membership 37% of people say they would vote to stay in, 43% would vote to leave. For most of this year YouGov have been showing a small lead for staying in, so this is slightly unusual, especially since another YouGov poll mid-week also showed more people wanting to leave. It could possibly be the impact of the £1.7bn story in the news. On that subject, 11% of people think David Cameron should pay the extra money, 24% say he should try to persuade the rest of the EU to drop the demand, but should ultimately pay up if he cannot. 52% think he should just refuse flat out to pay. However while people would like Cameron to take a stand, most don’t actually expect it to work – 61% expect Britain to end up paying either the full £1.7bn (31%) or slightly less than it (30%). Only 22% expect Britain to get a substantial reduction (17%) or get away without paying (5%).

454 Responses to “YouGov/Sunday Times – CON 31, LAB 32, LD 7, UKIP 18”

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    In case you’re still looking. No I did not advocate Labour playing their strategy quite that close to their chests, just stating the evidence that that is what they are doing. I am disquieted by their inability to play the short as well as the long game, that is, getting the plan across in more understandable form in relation to immediate popular concerns. Tho’ I think when they do, it’s smothered or distorted by the media, and secondly that if push comes to shove, I prefer the integrity and the strategy itself to become apparent in due time, rather than playing to the tune of the popular right wing press.

  2. @KEN

    “CARFREW………….That experience will be ratcheted up as we approach May, it must be tough for him to leave his house these days, even his own side are nipping at his wobbly bits. Cameron is immune to criticism, he’s an Old Etonian toff, don’t cha know. :-)”


    Well yes, Cameron is busy ratcheting it up some more as we speak, ‘cos another difference between Ed and Blair is that Tories left a rather more healthy economy in ’97*, thus allowing Blair additional licence to talk about investing in “education, education, education” etc.

    Whereas Ed is unable to promise much more than a few rusty bits and pieces without media screaming “where is the money going to come from??!!!”

    Cameron isn’t immune to criticism… there was plenty in the Omnishambles era, when press were annoyed re: Levenson and stuff, but currently Ed is more in the firing line on that…

    * Strategically, that was Major’s error. It’s not unusual for Governments of the right to leave the coffers bare, so that an incoming government of the left can’t invest the way they would normally seek to, in a way their voters might expect…

  3. @Maura

    “To return to the Tory party ‘split or no split’ I think there are a lot who want to remain in the EU (see Colin’s post) but the others, since Major, have always been louder and less concerned with maintaining unity”

    Isn’t the “split” more or less happening now? It isn’t quite on the dramatic lines of the Labour/SDP split in the early 80s that saw a sizeable block of former Labour MPs and members go off, more or less en bloc, and create a completely new party, but parts of the Conservative Party are splintering away into UKIP. Two MPs, maybe more this or the other side of the election next year, have joined UKIP and, as Peter Crawford has observed, the movement at grass roots and local level has been going on for years. Some UKIP voters are former supporters of parties other than the Tories, but UKIP members, activists, councillors, MEPs and MPs are made up almost wholly of former Conservatives. Nigel Farage is one such example himself.

    A cohesive and independent right wing political party is slowly forming in front of our very eyes and it’s almost exclusively made up of former Conservatives. This isn’t some far right faction consisting of extremists who have never had any contact or involvement with the Tory Party, this is a party that, to all intents and purposes, has splintered away from the old Conservative Party, formed not by a Big Bang event but by slow evolution.

    I remain completely staggered by the apparent insouciance in some Tory circles about all this. Just think where we now are. A few weeks ago in Clacton, and more than likely again in Rochester shortly, we will have seen the spectacle of two sitting Tory MPs resigning from their party, re-fighting their seats as UKIP candidates and soundly beating their former party in pretty safe Tory seats.

    And they’re apparently pretty relaxed about it all!

  4. @John Pilgrim

    You are quite right to tell me off. I have not been looking but visiting my sister. I am interested in your distinction between the short and long game, and also in the question of what it is that the parties need to do in order to win the long one. (The relevance of this is that I think it unlikely that the most brilliant policies are going to succeed if the people at large think the parties advocating them are ;’nasty’ (and hence the Tory troubles) or incompetent or metropolitan elite or whatever. And I am wondering if being clearer about the EU, immigration, the value of public services, the priority to be accorded the deficit etc might in the end serve Labour better than a policy of keeping their heads down and even gagging their MPs for a while on the bedroom tax. Maybe the trick as I think you are suggesting is to take every opportunity to rub home your values and broad message.

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