We’re clearly heading towards the Christmas polling break – we’ve still got the usual Populus poll this morning and YouGov poll tonight, but the weekly Lord Ashcroft poll has shut up shop for the year.

All the regular polls tend to stop over Christmas – ostensibly because it’s difficult to get a reliable sample over holiday periods when people have better things to do than answer polls, but I expect there’s a touch of us pollsters needing to have a holiday sometimes too. Last year Populus’s last poll was on the 22nd, so we should have a couple more from them and YouGov normally stop just before Christmas so there are few more from that front too. We also still have the monthly ICM and Ipsos MORI polls to come. ComRes’s monthly telephone poll has been right at the end of each month lately, so we might see that brought forward, or saved until after Christmas. Scratch that last bit – it’s being brought forward to before Christmas, out later tonight.

Anyway, our one poll so far this Monday is Populus’s, with topline figures of CON 34%, LAB 36%, LDEM 10%, UKIP 12%, GRN 5%. Tabs are here.

UPDATE: The daily YouGov/Sun poll today has toplines of CON 32%, LAB 34%, LDEM 6%, UKIP 14%, GRN 8%. YouGov have had the Greens sneaking ahead of the Lib Dems quite a few times lately, but until today it’s only been by a single point.

Meanwhile the monthly ComRes/Indy telephone poll has topline figures of CON 29%(+1), LAB 32%(+1), LDEM 12%(+3), UKIP 16%(-2), GRN 5%(-2). A much better score for the Lib Dems there, the highest that ComRes have shown for over a year.


274 Responses to “Latest Populus poll and a word about the Christmas break”

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  1. 1st

  2. This is by far the best page for polls and reading ,. I was shocked when I found out about these webpages and came across Mr Mike Smitson’s page . Blow me its like a Zoo . And The people say such crazy things I nearly gave up my interest in politics online ..Anyway thank you Mr Wells

  3. O I see Martyn === 2nd -)

  4. And a couple of Survation constituency polls (of debatable usefullness) in Witney and SW Surrey, but I can’t blame you if you deliberately ignored those!

    Survation Witney:

    CON 53 (-6)
    LAB 16 (+3)
    LIB 4 (-16)
    UKIP 19 (+16)
    GRN 7 (+3)

    Fieldwork 2nd to 4th
    Size 1,016
    Tabs http://survation.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/Full-Witney-Tables.pdf

    Survation SW Surrey:

    CON 57 (-1)
    LAB 11 (+5)
    LIB 8 (-22)
    UKIP 15 (+13)
    GRN 7 (+6)

    Fieldwork 4th to 5th
    Size 1,062
    Tabs http://survation.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/South-West-Surrey-TTIP-Full-Tables.pdf

    Survation’s Scottish poll is on it’s way this week too.

  5. I assume the average is arithmetic mean so i accept it as that. i note also that fom 14 November to 3 December Labour has a lead in the he list used. the conservatives are above or tied in 7.

    I keep being told by media commentators that the governing party makes a “come back” as the election grows near. This time people KNOW when it is and may well be already making up their minds. I have to doubt that this time the “come back” is not aparent.

  6. @Anthony W (from previous thread)

    “Bramley – yeah, it’s bollocks”

    I thought that might have deserved a snip, no vasectomy puns intended! :-)

    Very bad do in Sydney, one of my favourite cities on the planet, and I’ve ambled cheerfully around Martin Square many a time. It would appear that our lone wolf was a common or garden nutcase who’d hitched his deranged behaviour to the Islamic cause, more by convenience than conviction, I would guess. Whether the police made the right call on ending the siege by force will become clearer in time and when more details are known, but early evidence suggests that they may have been premature and over-zealous. Of course that’s easy for me to say from the comfort of my armchair some 10,000 miles away, but I wonder if less bravado and more negotiation might have ended it without the bloodshed. Ghastly dilemma though for the police and I have a horrible feeling that we’ll be seeing more of these sorts of attacks in major capital cities around the world while Syria and Iraq burn ever more out of control.

    The Sydney siege took Miliband and Cameron out of the headlines today which, in some ways, was a pity, because I thought both leaders made rather good and effective speeches on immigration and the economy respectively. We may slowly, some four months away from the beginning of the 2015 election campaign now, be starting to get into some long overdue beef, as I think they call the nit and gritty in US politics (SocalLiberal??).

    P.S. Latest Populus with Tories and Labour aggregate score on 70%. What are they on for chrissakes??
    :-)

  7. Last polls last year from the regulars (end dates):

    YouGov 19th Dec
    Populus 22nd Dec
    ComRes (P) 15th Dec

    First polls this year:

    YouGov 6th Jan
    Populus 9th Jan

    Opinium actually polled 30th Dec to 2nd Jan and got surprisingly normal looking numbers!

  8. The guardian is running a fascinating in depth on the Scottish referendum – why it was run as it was, and how the polling drove the campaign

    Some excepts
    “that the Cabinet Office commissioned more than £537,000 worth of private polling from Ipsos Mori during the referendum”

    “Darling headhunted Andrew Cooper, one of the UK’s leading and most trusted political pollsters, who co-founded the polling firm Populus, to do the campaign’s voter analysis.”

    “The challenge was to craft a message that would win over “comfortable pragmatists” and “uncommitted security seekers” who felt little attachment to the UK but who would stop short of voting for independence if they felt the economic risks were too great. This led to a campaign based on an appeal to the head, rather than the heart, highlighting the economic risks of splitting from the UK. This was known inside Better Together as Project Fear – a phrase exploited by the yes side”

    h ttp://www.theguardian.com/politics/2014/dec/15/-sp-britain-on-brink-real-story-scottish-independence

    I think ‘project fear’ is a large part of why the SNP is now surging, it really told the Scottish people you are not good enough to go it alone, and instead of uniting us, divided us.

    Negative campaigning, it may help you win battles, but it loses wars. IMHO. The missed the bigger picture by focusing too much on focus groups and polling, and failed to make the case for why we are better united.

  9. Seems a bit rogue showing Lib Dems in double figures and UKIP down on just 12%?

  10. ComRes:

    LAB – 32% (+1)
    CON – 29% (+1)
    UKIP – 16% (-2)
    LDEM – 12% (+3)
    GRN – 5% (-2)

  11. Anthony,
    May I ask why I have been moderated for expressing a dissenting opinion re-Sports Personality of the year? Whilst I can appreciate that this had no relevance to polling I am puzzled that you have seen fit to allow the original comments which indicated approval. Prima facie this appears less than even handed and verges on censorship.

    [Graham – no idea, I think it might be because an extra full stop has sneaked into your email address after your name and the system has mistaken you for a new person – AW]

  12. Following the early discussions on YG vs Populus, I’ve looked at all the data from August to get an idea of the difference.

    Each party does poll statistically differently:

    Party – YG Mean – Pop Mean – Difference

    Con – 32.5 – 33.3 – +0.8
    Lab – 34.6 – 36.0 – +1.4
    LD – 7.3 – 8.7 – +1.4
    UKIP – 14.8 – 13.4 – (1.7)
    Green – 5.4 – 3.7 – (1.7)
    Others – 5.2 – 4.4 – (0.8)

    Quite obviously Populus really benefits the main parties, and down plays the Greens and UKIP (much risen from 2010).

    Who is correct?

    Ask me after May!

  13. I compared YG to Populus, Lab and Con, last year (data for July to October) and have just looked back at it.

    Oddly they were statistically the same (Con 32.97 vs 33.04, Lab 38.59 vs 38.68).

    Something has changed…..

  14. Catman
    From what I understand of what ppl here have been saying about populus’ methodology, they rely, when ppl give their party ID on it being close to how they voted in 2010. Now, the further from 2010 we get, everything else being equal, the worse that will be.

    In addition, if there have been any parties that have had a significant rise in the number of voters who give them as their party ID over the last year, then Populus will be under-estimating the support for such parties, when compared to other pollsters who don’t assume current party ID should be in proportion to vote shares in 2010.

  15. CMJ – all that has changed is that the adjustments Populus make have a bigger impact now.

  16. Russian Central Bank raises prime interest rate to 17%

    7 weeks ago it was 8%

  17. ComRes:
    LAB – 32% (+1)
    CON – 29% (+1)
    UKIP – 16% (-2)
    LDEM – 12% (+3)
    GRN – 5% (-2)

    What’s this I see before me; a Lib Dem surge!! I’m reminded of Auden’s great poem: –

    “Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone,
    Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone,
    Silence the pianos and with muffled drum
    Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come. ”

    Especially the last line of that first verse.

    ;-)

  18. NumbrCrunchrPolitics [email protected] 9s10 seconds ago
    YouGov/Sun:

    CON 32 (=)
    LAB 34 (+2)
    LIB 6 (-1)
    UKIP 14 (-2)
    GRN 8 (+1)

    Fieldwork 14th to 15th
    Greens 2 ahead of Lib Dems for the first time

  19. . LAB 34%, CON 32%, UKIP 14%, GRN 8%, LD 6%.

  20. So on the same day, one poll has the Lib Dems on 12% and another has them on 6%… I know it’s the SoS adjustment but it’s still a comical lack of consensus!

  21. @Crossbat

    A LD “surge” which appears to be at the expense of Ukip. One poll though. Comres at that. No-one ever became rich making judgements based on Comres polls!

  22. Crossbat.

    Well, that was quite some surge from the LDs. …Back down to 6% already.

  23. “Greens two points ahead of the Lib Dems for first time under @YouGov.”

    LAB 34%, CON 32%, UKIP 14%, GRN 8%, LD 6%

    Thought the quote was quite significant.

  24. YouGov/Sun poll tonight: Greens two points ahead of the Lib Dems for first time under @YouGov. LAB 34%, CON 32%, UKIP 14%, GRN 8%, LD 6%

  25. Looks like the protest vote is starting to switch from UKIP to the Greens. That would add some excitement to the election!

    I see the Greens, PC and SNP are also now forming a left of centre alliance. “we won’t support a Conservative govt”, but we will require the scrapping of Trident as a condition for propping up a Labour govt.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/greens-snp-and-plaid-cymru-may-back-labour–if-they-scrap-trident-9926931.html

  26. @StatGeek

    Lab 34% and Greens 8%. Which begs the question: How much are the Greens taking from Labour? Maybe a bit less than some suspect.

    There’s also been a slow tapering off of the Ukip vote share across these polls.

  27. So, I was first again with tonight’s YouGov poll!

    ;-)

    Taken in the round, today’s three polls aren’t too bad at all for Labour, certainly by recent standards.

    The Sydney siege took Miliband and Cameron out of the headlines today which, in some ways, was a pity, because I thought both leaders made rather good and effective speeches on immigration and the economy respectively. We may slowly, some four months away from the beginning of the 2015 election campaign now, be starting to get into some long overdue beef, as I think they call the nit and gritty in US politics (SocalLiberal??).

  28. @Richard

    Hmm…how many seats are the Greens and PC expected to get? 2-5 max I would think.

  29. Richard,

    All three parties aim to destroy and replace the Labour Party. I cannot see them entering coalition unless there is literally no other option (and there is always the option of another election).

  30. “Greens two points ahead of the Lib Dems for first time”

    Surely this is a time-lag effect, from me joining them two months ago. ;)

  31. @MrNameless

    “All three parties aim to destroy and replace the Labour Party. I cannot see them entering coalition unless there is literally no other option (and there is always the option of another election).”

    What political parties say and do before an election can often be different to how they behave when the parliamentary arithmetic is known and I could see any one of these three parties quite happily entering a coalition with Labour. Probably more likely an arrangement that stops short of a full coalition, but I’d be careful about counting too many chickens.

    Just think how many Lib Dems discounted the prospect of any sort of arrangement with the Tories before May 2010 threw everything up in the air. Power, or at least the prospect of it, is a powerful political aphrodisiac. All sorts of people get into bed with each other!

    :-)

  32. @Statgeek,
    By my calculation if you include tonights YG, then Greens are 0.5% ahead of the LDs across the last 10 YGs (mean). The lines have crossed.

  33. @ MOG that was roughly when the second phase of the Green surge started ;)

    @ Richard PC I guess 3… *Maybe* they’ll fancy their chances in Ceredigion but I’m not the person to ask about that.

    Greens should be very confident of holding Brighton Pav., if they keep going up like this then it really depends how concentrated their new votes are…

  34. Mr Nameless
    Thank goodness for a bit of sense. The SNP for one will support Labour only as Lenin said the Communist Party (of the 20s) would, as “the rope supports a hanging man.” The aim of the SNP is to destroy the Labour Party (in Scotland), not to oppose it.
    Richard
    I presume you were not actually involved in the referendum campaign any more than the Guardian was.

  35. @Numbercruncher

    Over at Election Forecast they have the probability of Caroline holding on at 67% and Labour at 32%.

    I’m not sure where the other 1% goes…

  36. Why is it that the “latest voting intention” thing on the right side of the page doesn’t live up to it’s name.

    The latest poll showing there is 3 Dec.

  37. @CatmanJeff

    EC have it a Lab Gain by a small margin. I would say that is unlikely. EC does not yet seem to have taken account of the recent movement towards the Greens.

    Oddschecker: Greens 4/5, Labour 5/4.

  38. @RAF

    Hmm…how many seats are the Greens and PC expected to get
    ______________________________

    At the moment very few….but if you look at those constituency polls earlier in this thread, look at how that Lib Dem decline mirrors the UKIP rise…in my opinion that is no accident, many of those people are just ‘anyone but Tory’ voters, and latch onto whoever is perceived to be the main opposition.

    In 2010 that was the Lib Dems. In 2014 that is UKIP. Next year, that could be the Greens. Doesn’t mean they agree with the policies of any of those parties, but it will be quite amusing to see what impact it has if the whole political agenda shifts from hard right to hard left in the space of a few months. The Greens are now approaching that critical mass that could see ‘greenmania’ by the time of the election where it starts feeding itself.

  39. “Just think how many Lib Dems discounted the prospect of any sort of arrangement with the Tories before May 2010 threw everything up in the air.”

    Well they were discounting a Tory alliance because they were trying to win votes, particularly tactical and “anti-war” votes from Labour. Meanwhile the leadership of the party was involved in secret negotiations with the Tories.

    It was obvious to anyone with any political nous that “they would say that wouldn’t they”; as in 1974 they couldn’t be seen to prop up a government that was widely thought to have failed and been defeated unless there was no other alternative. But if anyone, including LD members, was in any doubt about the definite possibility of LibCon before the campaign they could have no excuse for not realising that this was the main gaim once the campaign was underway. Nick Clegg was widely reported as saying he would negotiate first with whoever had most seats. The Tories were ahead in the polls and predicted by most to make a slim overall majority. The coalition shouldn’t have been a surprise to anyone who watched the news headlines.

    Of course Gordon Brown vetoed pre-election contact with the LDs, but even if he had not, and even if the result were closer, the logic of not propping up a dying government remained. And it will remain in 2015, for any of the prospective kingmakers on the block.

  40. Apologies to all for insane spelling of “game”.

  41. @Phil H

    Gertrude Stein’s advice to Hemmingway comes to mind “Tell it like it is”!

  42. postageincluded @Phil H

    “Gertrude Stein’s advice to Hemmingway comes to mind”

    So does Anthony’s advice to posters.

  43. Colin,

    Sounds like Black Russian Wednesday.

  44. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: it amazes me that while the 2010 election presented ideal opportunities for a return to a two-party system in England, what has ended up happening is a move to a SIX party system.

  45. Mr N @ Richard,

    “All three parties aim to destroy and replace the Labour Party. I cannot see them entering coalition unless there is literally no other option”

    While I agree with your last sentence, it seems totally disconnected from your original assertion,

    I have no particular knowledge of the strategy of the Green Party of E&W or PC, but I struggle to comprehend what possible basis you have for suggesting that the SNP wishes to become the party of government for UK reserved matters, or a party of government at all in the domestic affairs of NI,Wales or Eng.

    As to replacing Lab as the governing party in Scotland, that was done some time ago,

  46. How much attention should be given to websites forecasting the election? Is there any merit to those models or is it just pointless guesswork?

  47. test

  48. Whilst a hung parliament was widely predicted, I dont remeber anyone talking about a coalition government before the 2010 election. Most people were expecting a “confidence and supply” arrangement as had happened in the hung parliaments of the 1970s. A formal coaltion in peacetime hadn’t happened since – 1930s (?).

  49. @OldNat

    Halloo! Bona to varda your lavs again, and here’s hoping you’ll soon be back on your scotches!

    I was being mischievous. In fact, the Stein quotation is (to my mind, anyway, as a reader of her works) the complete opposite of the recommendation to “speak your own mind” that it is usually taken to be.

  50. PI

    I wasn’t sure how to read the quote – hence my phrasing which allowed me to be seen as endorsing it or disagreeing with it, according to taste. :-)

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