Tonight’s YouGov poll for the Sun has topline figures of CON 34%, LAB 33%, LDEM 7%, UKIP 14%, GRN 6%. It has a Tory lead of one point, following a Labour lead in yesterday’s YouGov/Sun poll. Realistically we are in a position where the two main parties are so close that normal random variation is going to regularly spit out both Labour and Tory leads until and unless one party manages to pull substantially ahead of the other.

Rather out of the blue there was also a Survation constituency poll of Stockton South earlier today – a Conservative held ultra-marginal, currently represented by James Wharton. The poll had topline figures of CON 39%(nc), LAB 37%(-1), LDEM 3%(-12), UKIP 18%(+15). Changes are from the general election and technically represent a tiny swing from Labour to the Conservatives. Clearly this is better than the Conservatives are doing in the national polls and they’d be pleased to hold such a vulnerable marginal, but it’s also just one single poll with a relatively small sample size (35% said don’t knows, so the topline figures are based on 571 people). Tabs are here.


228 Responses to “YouGov/Sun – CON 34, LAB 33, LD 7, UKIP 14, GRN 6”

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  1. Bloody voters! Just can’t make up their minds.

  2. @OldNat

    They see one poll with the Tories ahead, don’t like it and ensure that tomorrow will be a Labour lead. Then they realise they don’t like that either and put the Tories ahead again. And then Labour again….

    The electorate knows what they don’t like. They have no idea what they do like.

  3. RAF

    Beautifully put!

  4. And as AW notes, the key will be when one of the big two pulls away. That doesn’t look like happening anytime soon. And while they’ll be much media attention tomorrow on Rochester and Strood, it’s unlikely the result will have anything other than a minor effect on the polls.

  5. Very hard to take the Stockton poll seriously.

    For a good number of reasons, it’s extremely difficult to imagine Labour not winning this in 2015.

  6. labour haven’t put any effort into stockton south, thinking that it would fall into their lap. the tory candidate is well known, well-funded and working hard to win.

    labour will pick up seats further down their target list.

    The underlying weakness of labour after all that’s happened is extraordinary. It’s all about Mili I fear.

  7. @James Peel. Wharton has no activists, no feet on the streets, no ground campaign. What he does have is an ocean of cash from Russian oligarchs and Tory diners which he uses on many many leaflets. Labour on the other hand have a well organised army of activists and a lot less money.

  8. @RAF

    Left a post about Bob Marshall-Andrews for you on the previous thread.

  9. Ken Clark seems to have added his helpful mite on the eve of the by-election, in an interview with Michael White in the Guardian.

    He accuses John Major of having helped Ukip, with his Brussels’ speech, which called for the EU to consider Cameron’s reforms to stop ‘free movement, and reiterates Margaret Thatcher’s commitment to the single market. Two birds with one stone?

  10. James Peel / Ian Bailey

    Love the evidence-based non-partisan posts. :-)

  11. I know Wharton’s people a bit…ian agrees with me that he has a lot of money and is deploying that money for leaflets…these are facts…I have been led to believe that labour don’t have much of an operation. That may or may not be true, but it’s some evidence, albeit circumstantial and perhaps even erroneous. I am not just whistling in the wind on this.

  12. Syzygy

    Did I also see that he intends to stand as an MP again?

  13. What none of the left leaning commentators on this website seem to address is the cause of the labour malaise. It is extraordinary that after 4 years, the Cameron/Osborne duo is nudging ahead of labour.

    If i were a labour man, I would be very depressed indeed. As Blair used to say “if we can’t beat this lot, we shouldn’t be in poltiics” or words to that effect. If labour can’t actually beat cameron and osborne, with a portion of the right, including 2 tory MPs (for now) actually defecting to a new party, the labour party is utterly dysfunctional.

  14. @Oldnat

    :)

  15. Oh dear. BBC News channel running with a story on how bad it is that on average younger women earn more than younger men – because they are better at their jobs.

    Apparently this needs addresses – when few gave a damn about the reverse being true formerly.

    Reminds me of education when the gender gap only became important to many, when boys were under performing.

  16. @AC (fpt)

    Blimey, you dug up a quote of mine from April 2010. I barely remember what I looked like that long ago!

    I bet you even remember when I said “Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years” ;)

  17. CON 34%, LAB 33%, LDEM 7%, UKIP 14%, GRN 6%.

    Rather out of the blue there was also a Survation constituency poll of Stockton South earlier today – a Conservative held ultra-marginal, currently represented by James Wharton. The poll had topline figures of CON 39%(nc), LAB 37%(-1), LDEM 3%(-12), UKIP 18%(+15). Changes are from the general election and technically represent a tiny swing from Labour to the Conservatives.
    _____

    I always hold the view that the most important poll/polls are the most recent ones.

  18. @James Peel

    It’s not that simple.

    Labour only lost power 4 years ago after 13 years in government. People semi-voted for an alternative, with which they also appear to be disenchanted. The voters therefore have fresh memories of bring disgruntled with both main parties. That’s why other alternative parties are flourishing.

  19. Lots of silliness in the air tonight, which I confess I’m sometimes keen to aid and abet, but I think we may be in danger of discussing the ins and outs of a calm before a very large storm arrives to blow the detritus all away. If Rochester turns out anything like the polls suggest, then we will have a second UKIP gain from the Tories inside two months, won by MPs who have defected from the Conservative Party and are standing in rock solid safe Tory seats. Just take a deep breath and then say that again. It’s unbelievable isn’t it and no matter what spin the Tories may try to use to explain the result away, Clacton and Rochester will have produced two of the most humiliating by-election results that I can ever remember a governing party suffering, particularly this close to a General Election. To lose to the main opposition party when mid term blues are at their deepest is one thing, but to be routed in safe seats by your own defecting MPs is the stuff of absolute nightmares. The word unprecedented doesn’t do it justice.

    We mustn’t get too far ahead of ourselves, and the Tories may hang on a bit like Labour did in Heywood (that would signal headlines of “Tory Triumph in Rochester” rather than “Labour meltdown in Heywood”! :-)), but if UKIP win, and win big like they did in Clacton, then I think it will be a result that will very likely change the political weather completely.

    My prediction? Reckless wins big (6000 plus majority) and the weekend YouGov has Labour, Tories and UKIP all in the 20s.

    You heard it here first, folks!

    :-)

  20. @RAF
    “The electorate knows what they don’t like. They have no idea what they do like.”
    I think they do know. It’s just not on offer. Accounts for low turnout, too.

  21. Labour were on a 5 point lead at the beginning of the year…they’ve c*cked up big time…

    agree with the monumentality of tories losing to ukip…

  22. losing seats to ukip….

  23. MISERABLE OLD GIT

    LOL, I was trying to look for some demographic data on Rochester and Strood and bingo I was directed to UKPR constituency profile of R&S and has a wee peek through the comments.

    Your comment stood out, ;-)
    ….

    “I bet you even remember when I said “Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years” ;)
    ___

    Actually I think you went on to also say ” And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also”

    Nothing like looking back on the ole days on UKPR ;-)

  24. @CB

    I tend to agree. A kipper win in Rochester would come behind only Torrington (1958) and Ashfield (1977) in terms of shocks (in my personal unresearched memory).

  25. @Miserable Old Git

    “I barely remember what I looked like that long ago!”

    Miserable Middle Aged Git? :))

  26. @Crossbat 11

    I’m a bit surprised how the momentum has swung towards Reckless in recent weeks. Just after Clacton it was thought Reckless may struggle to beat the Tories in R %S
    That may still be the case but like you I suspect a comfortable win for Reckless.

    Unlike you, I do not think it will have much lasting effect on the political landscape. I don’t expect there to be any more Tory defectors to Ukip. I do not foresee any lasting damage to the Tories. It’s just too close to a GE the polls now suggest could be a close run thing. Were the Tories on 25 or 26% then maybe things might have been different.

  27. RAF

    That does seem to be the case for the electorate in England.

    It isn’t true in Northern Ireland, where people still vote on community lines, but seem to be reasonably happy with how SF and DUP work together for the province.

    It’s demonstrably not true in Scotland.

    Wales is more difficult to call, but Labour, as the governing party in the Senedd, seems to have kept its support.

    It could be that Westminster itself is the problem, and voting for parties that won’t change it is seen as no solution.

  28. CROSSBAT

    “. If Rochester turns out anything like the polls suggest, then we will have a second UKIP gain from the Tories inside two months, won by MPs who have defected from the Conservative Party and are standing in rock solid safe Tory seats”
    ______

    Thanks for sharing that unique info.

    “Lots of silliness in the air tonight, which I confess I’m sometimes keen to aid and abet,”
    ___

    What do you mean? You’re the cheerleader ;-)

    Silliness aside I think even the PM will privately concede R&S has gone purple but it’s how the rest of the look like that will be the interesting bit.

  29. @CB11

    Of course the real test will be if they [Carswell & Reckless] hold on to those seats in GE2015.

  30. @AC

    We don’t always agree (alright, we very rarely agree!), but thanks for taking a lighthearted post in the spirit it was made :)

    Chapeau, as they say.

  31. @Statgeek

    Ditto :)

  32. I’m sorry for all the typos, ie missing letters/words tonight. I’m on my tablet and it’s either predicting words or missing them out altogether.

  33. MISERABLE OLD GIT

    Merci :-)

  34. @AC

    Whether DC concedes or not, Oddschecker now have Ukip at 1/50 to win the seat with the Tories at 20/1.

    The size of the win is important though. If it’s anything like 10%, that would be a hammering. Remember the Tory candidate is very, very right wing. As close to Ukip on issues like the EU and immigration as it is possible to be without joining the purple gang. And yet she is likely to lose by a hefty margin.

  35. Alec,

    Why is it hard to take the Stockton OP seriously? Is there something wrong with the methodology? Is it a voodoo poll, or by an unrecognised pollster?

    Or is it hard to take seriously because it isn’t what you’d expect to see?

    Of course there will be margin for error, but on the face of it it suggests this incompetent, disastrous, hubristic (etc, etc) posh-boy Tory omnishambles government is still ahead of Labour in a seat they only managed to take because Labour had their worst GE performance in living memory.

    Labour need some petrol in their tank and fast. They are starting to sputter I think, and are in danger of losing the “credible governing party” game over the next few months.

  36. RAF

    That’s true the size of the win will be important and the bigger it is then the less momentum the Tories will feel they have on the run up to 2015.

    However…One of the main reasons for people voting UKIP was that they didn’t like the last guy who held the seat. ;-)

    Night night

  37. ON
    “Bloody voters! Just can’t make up their minds.”

    I thought AW said it was our friend little MOE who couldn’t make up her mind. If this poll suggests anything it is that, rather than the 20’s which some are suggesting, both main parties are moving up to the mid-thirties, incumbency counts, press comments (rather than Milli himself) has an influence, both of which will be subject to change in the coming months.

  38. John Pilgrim

    Wasn’t Lil’ Mo an American singer or something?

  39. While Rochester voters prepare to protest against immigration, they might want to consider the Alicante town of JÁVEA/XÀBIA

    Population – 33,149
    Spanish – 15126 : 46%
    EU – 14,565 : 44% (of which UK 8,858 : 27%)
    Latin America – 1.384 : 4%
    Non EU Europe – 877 : 3%
    Africa – 743 : 2%
    Asia/Australasia – 454 : 1%

    Send these damn Brits home!

  40. I found that Lib v Green chart had popped up on a Wikipedia talk page, so I updated it:

    http://www.statgeek.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/ld-green-uk.png

  41. CROSSBAT11

    I suggest that you need to examine your assertions more carefully – Bob Marshall-Andrews represented Medway (which forms the bulk of the Rochester & Strood constituency) for Labour from 1997 to 2010, so your description of Rochester as a “rock solid safe Tory seat” appears to be either pre-emptive spinning of a dismal Labour performance, or an admission of a fundamental collapse in the Labour core vote. Perhaps you can elaborate on your reasoning please?

    You really ought to be more careful – your personal prejudices appear to be showing!

  42. Stockton South has not been swinging much to Labour – in Ashcroft’s July poll of marginals it recorded the lowest swing – just 2% to Labour, with a L38, C35 UKIP19 split. Given the fall in Labour’s national polling since then they are probably relieved not to be more than 2% behind now, and to have lost only 1% of the vote they had in July. Makes me wonder though if 2015 c/w 2010 is going to be like 1987 c/w 1983 for Labour …. and guess what they didn’t sack their Leader afterwards, allowing him to lose again in 92…oh dear

  43. ON
    Maureen Connolly, I think, unless there’s another one.
    Sleep tight.
    j

  44. @ James Peel

    [] It is extraordinary that after 4 years, the Cameron/Osborne duo is nudging ahead of labour.
    []

    I don’t think this is a mystery at all. Indeed, I would be surprised if Labour was doing very much better than it is doing at present. It was deeply unpopular when it left office only four years ago; it had been in power for 13 years and had run out of energy and ideas; and the Tories and their media allies have done a great job in pinning the economic crisis on Labour, so the big potential plus for them is not a plus at all. Yes, Miliband is an issue, but it is not all down to him. Indeed, things could have done a lot worse – a post-election split has normally what has happened to Labour in defeat..

  45. Conservatives lead at 1

    Con 34%, UKIP 14%, Lab 33%, LD 7%, Greens 6%, SNP/PCY 5%

    Cons and Lab probably neck and neck now, I think Lab has stabilsed at 33%, which means Cons have risen one probably at UKIP’s expense, so 33% each

    Lab is probably still a little ahead with younger voters, not equal as found here.. The 18-24 sample is only 105 people.

    I wonder if we will have a defection tomorrow morning. I am sure UKIP and the MP’s involved have it all choreographed, with little teasers given to the press the last few days.

    I was thinking if the Lab MP Graham Stringer decides to defect tomorrow, the whole emphasis will change from Con disaster to Lab disaster

  46. @NewForestRadical

    “I would be surprised if Labour was doing very much better than it is doing at present”

    I agree with your views, I think Lab were always going to be up against it – they had upset too many groups in the 13 years

    I don’t think any other leader would have done better and Ed M has kept the party together. David M would have been mocked the same way and Alan Johnson mocked in a different way

    If the party has done its best and not enough people are ready to listen then what can they do.

  47. Corrected last sentence – ‘Yes, Miliband is an issue, but it is not all down to him. Indeed, things could have gone a lot worse – a post-election split has normally been what has happened to Labour in defeat..’

  48. CYNOSARGES

    @” Perhaps you can elaborate on your reasoning please?”

    Don’t hold your breath-your last sentence describes the “reasoning”.

    It occurs to me that if the much trailed tide of defections from & implosion of the Conservative Party does not in fact happen-then there can only be one explanation:-

    Con MPs’ fear of losing their seats to UKIP, is vastly outweighed by their confidence in the dire state of the Labour Party’s polling.

    And an OP showing that Reckless won’t hold it at the GE probably helps a bit.

  49. JOHN PILGRIM

    @” If this poll suggests anything it is that, rather than the 20’s which some are suggesting, both main parties are moving up to the mid-thirties, incumbency counts, press comments (rather than Milli himself) has an influence, both of which will be subject to change in the coming months.”

    An interesting observation-all the more so because it is based on the polling evidence.

    Do I detect a smigeon of fade in UKIPs numbers.

  50. Little Mo Conolly was a tennis player who won 9 grand slams in the 1950s before the age of 19 when her career ended.Extraordinary.Actually at 5foot5
    she wasn’t particularly little.

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