The tabs for the weekly YouGov poll for the Sunday Times are now up here. Topline figures are CON 32%, LAB 36%, LDEM 8%, UKIP 13%, GRN 6%. The poll was conducted on Friday and Saturday, and the four point Labour lead equals the highest this year, so it looks like it could be an impact from the Paxman interviews. Then again, YouGov spat out a single four point Labour lead in one of their daily polls earlier this month that turned out to be just random noise, so this is nothing that couldn’t just be random error. To have any confidence about whether anything actually has changed in terms of voting intention, we need more polling.

In the meantime, what does the rest of the poll show? Well, leadership ratings do also suggest an improvement for Miliband. Asked if they are doing well or badly David Cameron’s net rating is up from minus 5 last week to minus 2 this week. Ed Miliband though is up from minus 39 to minus 29, so a solid jump (that said, Nick Clegg is up from minus 47 to minus 40 without being in the interviews at all…). Miliband also rose in the Best PM question – up four points since YouGov last asked this version of the question in November last year, but still 12 points behind Cameron (when YouGov ask the question for the Sun it’s Cameron v Miliband v Clegg, for the Sunday Times Farage is also an option – don’t compare the two, they give different results).

On the debate question itself, amongst people who watched the debates 49% of people thought Miliband came across better, 34% thought David Cameron did. This is of course very much in line with a movement to Labour in the headline voting intention figures… but why so different from the ICM poll after the debate? Part of the answer may well be that people have had longer to digest it, think about it and be influenced by discussing it with other people. First reactions are extremely important, but they aren’t everything.

Another factor though is who watched the debate – the ICM poll was weighted to be politically representative (though even weighted, the poll still ended with a sample showing an 11 point Labour lead rather than Con and Lab neck and neck), but a debate doesn’t necessarily get watched by a representative sample of the public. People from one party maybe more likely than another to watch it. Looking at the YouGov data, 31% of people who voted Labour in 2010 watched the debate, only 15% of people who voted Tory…so the sub-sample of people who watched the debate was actually a very Laboury group of people to begin with. This highlights a methodological challenge for pollsters in doing things like debate polls, how do you weight the sample? Do you try to make it politically and/or demographically representative of the country as a whole, regardless of who is actually watching? Or do you try to make it representative of the people who are actually watching, regardless of the political skews that brings? The second is probably more methodologically purer – all you can *really* measure is what people who watch think, but given what the media want is just a crude “who won” verdict, would it be fair to start out with a sample that was stronger biased one way or another?

Anyway, time will tell if the Paxman interviews actually did or did not make any difference. On other matters, YouGov found 11% of people said they were voting tactically at the election. Amongst that (obviously very small) sample people were pretty evenly split between voting tactically against the Tories (40%) and voting tactically against Labour (37%).

In my weekly round up I mentioned some YouGov polling about which taxes would rise under a Labour or Conservative government, conducted before Prime Minister’s Question time, Cameron ruling out a VAT rise and Ed Balls ruling out an NI rise. YouGov repeated those questions in this poll to see if they had changed. At the start of the week, 31% of people thought VAT would rise if the Conservatives won. Following David Cameron ruling out a rise in VAT, this is now…32%. At the start of the week 39% of people expected national insurance to rise if Labour won, but since Ed Balls ruled it out, that has changed to… 40%. A lovely illustration of how much of the politicians’ arguments, exchanges and pledges make not the slightest difference to public opinion.


303 Responses to “More from today’s Sunday Times poll”

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  1. Andrew Neil vs Lucy Powell this morning was just how it should be done.

    All the Party Leaders should have to face him. He is just interested in facts-not personality flaws.

  2. Paul Goodman reveals a bit more of that Kellner article here

    http://www.conservativehome.com/thetorydiary/2015/03/milibands-poll-position.html

    “Peter Kellner’s analysis of today’s YouGov poll shows Cameron ahead of Miliband as a leader and as best Prime Minister. Kellner writes that the Prime Minister must try to transform the contest from one which is all about “empathy with normal voters, which he is likely to lose, into a debate about competence, which he might win”. Until or unless this happens, Miliband is likely to remain, literally, in pole – or is that poll? – position.”

    Personally I think the problem of that strategy is that the more people see Miliband, as the debate polling shows, the more he seems to be growing on them (but from a very low base).

    For negative campaigning to work, there has to be truth in it, otherwise it has the opposite effect.

    The conservatives were finally starting to increase their VI last week, helped by a UKIP squeeze, but also by starting to talk like human beings – Northern powerhouse, etc and away from the bash Miliband, very personal campaign. Reading Cameron’s speech yesterday it looks like they are starting to panic and are back to bash Miliband.

    Lynton Crosby – Labour’s secret weapon…if this really does represent the Conservative strategy, as long as Labour hide Ed Balls in a cupboard for 5 weeks I think they stand a very very good chance of getting a majority.

  3. @ Colin

    I think some of the usual suspects are already limbering up. Although the targets appear to be Crosby 1, Cameron 2 at the moment.

  4. Looking at the detail of today’s YouGov the figures seem to be Lab 35.5% Con 34.0%.

  5. @LRR

    Fair enough. He did say some of those things so it is not ‘misleading’ to pass them on.

    Below I quote the full paragraph so that others can judge whether to treat it as a Kellner prediction or merely as an informal preamble to a newspaper piece.

    YouGov’s poll for The Sunday Times indicates a swing of more than six percentage points from Conservative to Labour across England and Wales. If this were repeated in every constituency, Labour would gain enough seats to come close to an outright majority, even if it lost badly in Scotland. Labour would end up with 314 MPs and the Tories 251, followed by the Scottish National party (48) and Liberal Democrats (16).

  6. @COLIN

    Brillo was complaining on twitter yesterday that none of the major party leaders will face him before election day.

  7. @Colin

    Well that’s the thing, innit Col.

    This doesn’t seem much like Milimania, but more a correction to the barrage of attacks against Miliband. That’s the problem with personal attacks: they work better when unopposed. But in a campaign period, with more exposure to Miliband, people get to compare what’s claimed about him with the reality. We saw this briefly when he raised his head above the pulpit to deal with attacks concerning his father.

    The other thing, is that by emphasising Miliband’s “otherness”, this may seem like a jolly wheeze, because underneath it all he is of foreign descent somewhat. The trouble is, that this is possibly more an asset than a liability, because people may be more likely to trust the more foreign person to be impartial.

    (In his defence, Crosby may not have been reading the New Scientist recently…)

  8. Think labour got today wrong -should have put wee dougie in with brillo .

  9. @Anthony

    A strange term to use about the previous YouGov poll that showed Labour 4% ahead. It was “spat out” apparently. What next? Excreted, perhaps?? :-)

    You put a strong argument together about the potential weakness in the post “debate that never was” polling and how it might be overstating the positive effect it had on Miliband’s personal ratings, and today’s YouGov may well be a complete rogue, as you seem very keen to imply. However, what seems pretty clear now is how the fall out from the Channel 4 programme has altered the narrative of this election, and that may well be more significant than isolated opinion polls in the long run.

    Take the Sunday Politics show with Neil this morning. At the end of the programme. when the pundits treat us to their respective homilies, the discussion was framed around the spring in the step now clear in Labour’s demeanour and a growing confidence that appeared to be developing within the party. They talked about the political initiative that may have changed hands, quoting Kellner in so doing, and how Miliband’s performance had galvanised the Labour camp as they entered the campaign proper. On the other hand, they spoke of a faltering start to the Tory campaign and the rumbling murmurings off stage about the Crosby electoral strategy.

    If you were a Tory sympathiser, it can’t have been good to hear these impartial observers talking in these negative terms about your Party this close to an election.

    It’s looking increasingly the case that it’s all going to have to come very good on the night for the Tories. Maybe I was wrong and that our old friends, Messrs Swingback and Crossover are timed for 8.00pm on Thursday, 7th May. I’d originally thought more like 4.00pm. It’s getting later!

    :-)

  10. the problem the tories have is that the media narrative on mili was largely created by the right wing press…the mail, the sun, the times, telegraph, express and all their sunday papers…

    tv allows mili to by pass them and show himself directly to millions of people whose impression of him has been shaped by the newspapers…

    classic case of exceeding very low expectations…if Mili does this, he will get into no. 10 on the back of snp votes comfortably.

  11. CROSSBAT 11
    Good Afternoon to you, this wet Palm Sunday, here in Bournemouth East Seat.
    Reasons to be Cheerful for the Red Corner, I think, but it is going to be quite a contest.

  12. I think we are in danger of getting overexcited here. We had 4 Tory leads between 19 March and 26 March.This is just one poll. MOE and all that.

    The parties are still neck and neck. Perhaps Labour is a nose ahead.

    Milimania, if there is such a thing, may be a short lived as Cleggmania. It may not even last past Thursday.

  13. @ Graham

    Looking at the detail of today’s YouGov the figures seem to be Lab 35.5% Con 34.0%.

    Was the above a typo? Because today’s YG has Con at 32%.

  14. @LITTLE RED ROCK
    “I think we are in danger of getting overexcited here.”

    ————

    That’s what we do and we are very good at it!! This is nothing… We can get very excited about fringe council elections and even road numbering schemes…

  15. @07052015

    Referring to the Tories you wrote:

    But the economic fundamentals could still work on the current undecided and get them out of jail.

    By ‘economic fundamentals’ I presume you mean national figures like GDP rise, inflation, deficit etc. Labour’s calculation appears to have been that swing voters are more likely to be influenced by their own circumstances than by abstract national measures. Do you have any information about how VIs are affected respectively by global and personal circumstances? Is there any evidence about the economic circumstances faced by swing voters in recent months? Low (well zero) inflation and fuel prices presumably contribute to a feeling that things are going reasonably well. But the inflation-corrected income figures are difficult to interpret, not least because the official figures exclude the self-employed who may well feature prominently in the ‘currently undecided’ category. If recent earnings have not been good for them they may not see their best interests as lying with the party of the Big Fish. More generally, George Osborne has been claiming for some months now that the economic fundamentals are good, but there is little or nothing to suggest that these statements gain any real purchase with the voters. For example, no Tory VI boosts after the Autumn Statement or after the Budget. So, why should these elusive influences suddenly start to be effective in the final stages of the campaign?

  16. JAMES

    They wouldn’t dare to-says it all.

  17. @unicorn

    Thanks for sharing the article. Pretty clear he’s just talking about one poll, not making a formal prediction.

    @crossbat
    “Maybe I was wrong and that our old friends, Messrs Swingback and Crossover are timed for 8.00pm on Thursday, 7th May. I’d originally thought more like 4.00pm. It’s getting later!”

    Heh. Heh.

    Don’t you worry, our friends will show up (:

  18. @Peter Crawford

    The danger for Labour is that Miliband exceeding expectations on TV will not work over the longer run. If people were surprised by him on Thursday, it is likely that a similar performance next Thursday will not have the same effect. Expectations exceeded are expectations raised. They are bound to plateau fairly soon.

  19. @Crossbat

    Are you related to Crossover?

  20. @ Peter Crawford

    “tv allows mili to by pass them and show himself directly to millions of people whose impression of him has been shaped by the newspapers…”

    JFK used this quite extensively (Time and Los Angeles Times were against him, not to mention the yellow press, while Washington Post (Graham was his friend) was for him).

    He broke up the Democratic Party convention’s process by bringing in the cameras (upsetting Johnson), and using a lot of television opportunities (not only the debate with Nixon).

    He was also the first candidate who used micro polls (Labour is doing it here, as I heard on the meadow from other dog owners, in this boring constituency – although they didn’t tell the constituents that this was what they were doing).

  21. I think people are right in saying that the tories have been complacent – assuming that when it came to the crunch people would reward them for their economic record etc.

    This doesn’t look like its going to happen.

  22. As I have said before (ad nauseum?) if the parties are level, and the polls do not from time to time show leads of up to about 4, then they are not showing random sample variations at the level of MoE about 3.
    “YouGov’s poll for The Sunday Times indicates a swing of more than six percentage points from Conservative to Labour across England and Wales.”
    It doesn’t. It means the YouGov net has caught more Labour voters than usual in its sweep across the YouGov panel pond. That does not mean that there are more Labour voters in that pond, still less that 1 in 10 Conservatives on the panel have changed their minds.

  23. @Omnishambles.

    Sorry to disappoint you. The 314 was a side issue.
    Elsewhere in the article he says

    However, past experience suggests that many MPs defending marginal seats will enjoy an incumbency bonus. Taking this into account I estimate our overall figures [I assume he means this poll alone] would give Labour 289, Con 267 SNP 43, Lib Dems 28.

    But its the overall tone rather than individual quotations that is striking about PK’s article. This is the man that forecast 297 for the Tories two weeks ago and he appears to have engaged reverse and maximum revs.

    My original question was: Why?

    Does he think that this week has changed things or is he regretting his earlier forecast?

  24. @ Neil J

    So I have picked seven seats to watch on election night until they are fully counted. Sorry I cannot remember whether you just get a declaration or a running seat count as we do in Canada.

    Rochester & Strood
    Clacton

    Thanet South

    Thurrock
    Boston & Skegness
    Dudley North
    Walsall North

    Depending how thins go with them I do have others i’ll be watching as well like:

    Cambornne and Redruth
    Portsmouth South

    But what I found fascinating is that a Labour report expanded the list enormously, beyond where my thinking was at.

    So I just reported out on that, that’s all.

    I am not expecting UKIP to get more than 8 seats, but in the current climate every seat going which way and tother is going to count for something.

  25. Just to be clear about the micro polls

    From constituents, who declare themselves undecided (it’s a very mixed constituency in social stratification), canvassers ask quite provocative questions about Miliband to solicite answers with which they can engage with. I don’t know if it’s specific to this ward or constituency, but it works.

    So it suggests that somebody decided that EM is an issue and decided that it should be taken on.

    They should now do it on the economy as well (haven’t heard that).

  26. There is only one “n” in Camborne-and if you live down that way, there is no “R” or “e” in Redruth .

    :-)

  27. Andy Shadrack

    We get a final declaration, once the parties have agreed the numbers with the Returning Officer – or a statement that there is a recount.

  28. @Andy

    It depends on the activity on the programs, on-line and so on. Many try to be some sort of news service at events like these. I’ll just be happy to have a dram and keep an eye on one or two Scottish seats.

    Those and perhaps a few LD ‘strongholds’ to see the Lib to Lab or Lib to Con shifts (if any).

  29. @RAF


    If people were surprised by him on Thursday, it is likely that a similar performance next Thursday will not have the same effect

    For the next debate the focus (or foci) of interest will be entirely different. It will be all about Farage and whether the ‘man of the people’ can make the ‘professional politicians’ appear leaden-legged. And it will be about reactions to the way the SNP opt to present themselves on a wider stage (or indeed whether they just play the occasions for the reactions it gets north of the border). This situation represents a completely new set of risks and opportunities for the two main parties (and all the others as well).

    Did you notice how quickly Farage jumped up and declared that Miliband had ‘won’ the last (non) confrontation? My hunch is that he will focus his ammunition on Cameron and that Cameron will come off as badly as Clegg did in the debates before the EU elections. The occasion will be just right for him. With seven debaters and just a few minutes of air time each, the advantage will go to those with the simplest story to tell.

    So, I predict renewed soul-searching and Crosby-battering by the Tories come this time next week. (Subject to normal MoE, as ever.)

  30. @RAF: “The danger for Labour is that Miliband exceeding expectations on TV will not work over the longer run”

    He doesn’t need to keep getting better – he was in a position where the public perception of him was heavily skewed. He’s not as good a performer as many other politicians, but he’s not the fool he was made out to be. All he had to do was move from ‘liability’ to ‘credible’ which he may well have done.

    The proportion of people who said they ‘watched’ the debates seems incredibly high in the YouGov poll – I wonder if this is true, or are people claiming to have watched the TV interviews, when they’ve actually just heard about them? While relatively few watched, far more people will have read about them in the papers and online, but if you’re filling out a YouGov politics poll then it wouldn’t surprise me to find people claiming to be more informed than they actually are. Might be pure conjecture, but it could explain the strangely high figures.

  31. Amber
    ‘Was the above a typo? Because today’s YG has Con at 32%.’
    It was indeed – thanks for pointing it out. The detailed figures would seem to be Lab 35.5% Con 32.0%!

  32. @ Bramley, Raf and Gary Gatter

    Belated thanks for your answers on the previous thread to my question about viewing figures; I could and should have searched for the answer myself, so I’m hoping that the speed of your responses means you didn’t spend too much time compensating for my laziness!

  33. @ Oldnat

    Is the verification of the numbers matching (ie the matching number of voting slips with the numbers ticked off on the registers in the polling booths) done face down now?

    I can’t help feeling if you got 650 experienced pollsters in amongst it all you could have the GE result by 11pm.

    @ Andy

    Normally we get a good idea by reports coming back from the scenes of the counts as the party count watchers (tellers?) see the votes coming in and then you get snippets of gossip like “we hear someone is in trouble in….”

    Last time Sky TV attempted a similar style to America by trying to call some seats they were sure of on more than just gossip- unfortunately they got it wrong in one of the Edinburgh seats- not sure why and not sure whether this means they shelved the idea.

  34. Crosby is right to focus on the economy and, perhaps less so, miliband as leader, but where the Tories are failing to connect with people is how the deficit actually impacts on their lives today. If I’m told my overdraft will be bigger next year, I’m mildly concerned, if it’s highlighted that it will mean I have to cancel my holiday and have to go to the pub less often, I’m panicking. Replace holiday and pub with nhs and education for generations to come, and people will start to get it.

    Our interests payments alone exceeds our defence budget yet this type of argument is rarely heard in a manner that truly connects with ‘the masses’.

    Until they ‘personalise’ the deficit, labour’s inherent niceness in the eyes of the electorate will continue hold sway, added to miliband’s increased exposure helping him to be seen as a geek rather than a buffoon (a la kinnock). He’s no kinnock and the Tories need to understand that, and quickly!

  35. Shevii

    Long time since I was at a count.

  36. The economic fundamentals are [snip – can we not have argument over who can pick stats to make the economy look good or bad – AW]

  37. Shevii,

    Presumably someone pointed out to them that using information from the count before the declaration is actually illegal.

  38. @07052015 – “Its all the voters fault ,they just dont listen……Healthy politics requires better education and active citizenship ,a longterm project but also politicians who are able to persuade ,engage and make politics interesting.”

    Well we live in a representative democracy not a direct democracy, so the voters don’t really need to know the nitty gritty at all. They just need to elect someone who understands all the nitty gritty and will make the decisions on their behalf for five years.

    I don’t really know the ins and outs of how my car works. I could learn it if I wanted to spend my time that way – or I could just find a good mechanic. And I pick one on recommendation plus just gut feel about whether they’ll cheat me or not. It’s pretty much the same process when electing an MP.

    In a representative democracy, the real requirement is good quality candidates. You don’t want incompetents standing because that defeats the whole point of electing an expert to make decisions on your behalf.

    We don’t have enough good quality candidates at the moment. Parliament should be full of experts of all kinds, scientists, doctors, accountants, actuaries, business people etc, so they can spot and amend dodgy legislation. But instead it’s packed with lawyers, journalists and spads. And voters seem to think they need “ordinary people”, i.e. non experts, just as a feel good thing, when we really need to be going in the opposite direction.

  39. ‘Normally we get a good idea by reports coming back from the scenes of the counts as the party count watchers (tellers?) see the votes coming in and then you get snippets of gossip like “we hear someone is in trouble in….”

    There seems to have been quite a lot more of that at recent elections. I had always understood that leaking election results prior to the Declaration was an offence under Representation of the People Acts rendering those people liable to prosecution. Returning Officers have often kept the media locked out of counts in the past – and could also refuse stipulate that no mobile phones are to be brought in – the latter would have to include party tellers and candidates.

  40. @RAF: “The danger for Labour is that Miliband exceeding expectations on TV will not work over the longer run”

    All Miliband needs to do is convince the people thinking of voting Green, SNP and LibDem to vote for him. And all Cameron needs to do is convince the people thinking of voting UKIP to vote for him.

    This election isn’t really about persuading the other side, it’s about making your sure your own side doesn’t splinter, which is what makes it so unusual.

    The lefty criticism of Miliband was that he had no fire in his belly and didn’t care – they might have been convinced to give him a go by the performance in the interview.

    The right-wing criticism of Cameron is that he doesn’t take seriously all their concerns on Europe. I don’t think there was anything in the interviews to get them to reconsider on that point.

  41. Andy

    Your schedule of seats to watch may be affected by when they actually declare the results.

    The Press Association will publish a list of estimated times (though in my experience, they are often wrong!)

    One complicating factor will be whether the English seat concerned is also counting council election votes.

  42. @ Unicorn

    Thanks again. So does this switching off have any measurable impact (ie can we see it?) or is it more like the drip of a coffee percolator, drip, drip, drip, day by day, week by week.

    Earlier in the week, for example, I read a poll that said the potential flow of votes from LD to Green could be as high as a value of 39, while the flow from Green could go as high as 26.

    And I realize that the flow of voters among undecideds and leaners swings back and forth until about 48 to 24 hours before the vote.

    I”ll never forget campaigning in 1996, in which everyone was really friendly and a lot would take a leaflet out of interest or to be nice, until about the Saturday before the vote on the Tuesday.

    And then bam, only 1:10 smiled at me and only about 1:20 would still take a leaflet. It was like I’d stepped in something and most people were trying to avoid the smell.

    Turns out that I got 11.2% of the vote, which was about 5 to 10 times more than anyones else in the Party, but it was a valuable lesson not to overestimate support, and to understand that all the smiles and “good lucks” in the world are not worth much compared to someone saying “you have my vote”.

    Iit is a very hard lesson for candidates from minor and “fringe” parties to learn. I remember the story of a young women who had won a scholarship to a pretigious university and after a year came back to run in a provincial election.

    She got sevaral standing ovations during the all canadidates meetings and the ended up with less than 10% of the vote, and was completely traumatized from the whole experience.

    On the other hand there was the 25 year old petrol pump attendant who defeated the Attorney General of Saskatchewan in 1982, and the Young Communists recruited by the NDP (Labour) to run in the 2011 federal election in Quebec who ended up as MPs and had to quit their university studies.

    So one hopes that Ed does not drop his bacon sandwhich or something, unlike Conservative opposition Leader Bob Stanfield who dropped the ball at football (not soccer) match kick-off.

    A decent, honest man who had to suffer the humiliation of newspaer headlines reading: Stanfield Drops Ball.

    It was a cold fall afternon and the poor man simply had the ball slip out of his fingers due to coldness of the weather.

    That all said I assume then, that a downturn of .5% for LD last week and an uptick of .8% for Green could just as easily be background noise as “swingback beng switched off?

  43. If we ignore the latest Yougov poll, the polls over the last few weeks still looks good for Labour. A couple of months ago they had a small lead over the conservatives in the weekly average of polls produced by AW. In the last few weeks the conservatives managed to draw level and 3 weeks or so ago they managed to pull ahead by 1%.
    Since then it went back to drawing level and this weeks average poll of polls put’s Labour ahead by 1%. It could all be MOE of course but I do think it shows the conservatives are at the least not pulling ahead. From my calculations I think the conservatives will have to put an average 1% each week for the net 5 weeks if they have any realistic chance of getting elected. Maybe wrong but cannot see where this is going to come from at the moment. If anything the momentum appears to be with Labour

  44. Oldnat,

    The standard practice will be to count council election votes on the Friday.

  45. Best not to get too excited over this poll.

    More polls needed before we see any pattern, if indeed there is a patter.

    However, as I and others have mentioned, the narrative is significant, and sometimes an odd poll in certain circumstances is sufficient to nudge jaded and hackneyed journalists to explore a new line.

    There is clearly an element of that here already, but it will only be sustained if this poll is backed up by other news.

  46. “If we ignore the latest Yougov poll, the polls over the last few weeks still looks good for Labour. A couple of months ago they had a small lead over the conservatives in the weekly average of polls produced by AW. In the last few weeks the conservatives managed to draw level and 3 weeks or so ago they managed to pull ahead by 1%.”

    Remember how the budget was going to turn things around for the tories?

    looking at the polls, it’s almost as if the budget never happened. Certainly, if you’d said that labour would have a 4 point lead a week after the budget, some might have expressed surprise. the tory prospects are reliant on a range of things happening which simply haven’t happened. Sustained Tory recovery is the dog that hasn’t barked.

    The tories have two biggish hurdles; 1) they have to get more seats than labour even to get a chance of leading a government

    2) once they’ve got the chance, they have to put a coalition together. so even if they win more seats than labour, they have to be able to be able to put together a coalition which can overcome labour and the snp together.

    The problem is that if they beat labour in seats, it is likely that the snp would have done very well, so to get to a situation where the tories + ld+ dup > lab + snp is challenging.

  47. “Certainly, if you’d said that labour would have a 4 point lead a week after the budget”

    I stress a 4 point lead in any single poll.

  48. GRAHAM

    [snip – can we not have argument over who can pick stats to make the economy look good or bad – AW]

  49. As I have been the chief exponent of ‘media exposure milibonce theory’ for several years, I feel vindicated.

    However, not wishing to rain on anyone’s parade, lets just wait a bit and see what happens…!
    best,
    andyo

  50. Doh-Self Employed people 4,503,000 .

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