Populus’ February poll for the Times has topline voting intention figures, with changes from last month, of CON 36% (-3), LAB 33% (+1), LDEM 19% (+1). After unusally good figures for the Conservatives in January this is in line with most of the voting intention figures produced by Populus since last Summer. The poll was conducted between the 2nd and 4th February.

Populus also asked when people thought Tony Blair should stand down – 49% of people said now, including 33% of Labour voters. As I commented at the weekend, this is actually very much in line with people’s stated opinions last year, suggesting that the renewed focus on the loans-for-honours inquiry in the last week hasn’t had much effect upon people’s opinions. Asked specifically about the loans-for-honours inquiry, 56% said it had significantly reduced their trust in the Labour Government. 43% said that the police investigation seems to have been “unnecessarily heavy-handed”.

Populus’s now regular hypothetical question of how people would vote with Gordon Brown as leader produced one of his best ratings so far, with the Conservative lead cut to only 1 point, 35% to 34%. Questions on Gordon Brown’s public image reveal the normal pattern – on the upside he is seen as strong and statesmanlike, on the downside he is seen as uncharismatic, arrogant and dour.

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