Ipsos MORI released their monthly political monitor yesterday, topline voting intention numbers are CON 37%, LAB 31%, LDEM 10%, UKIP 9%. These are on the basis of some minor interim changes to methodology (in this case adding how habitually people vote to the turnout model) while the inquiry continues longer term solutions are worked upon. Tabs are here. MORI also asked a question about whether people thought the four Labour leadership candidates had what it took to be a good Prime Minister. Andy Burnham had the best score (or the least worst) – 27% of people thought he did, 27% disagreed. In comparison 22% thought Yvette Cooper did, 16% Liz Kendall and 17% Jeremy Corbyn.

YouGov also published the rest of their poll of Labour party members, conducted for the Times. Tables for part one of the research are here, part two here. The second wave included a question on why party members are voting as they are, showing the contrast between what is driving Burnham, Cooper, Kendall and Corbyn voters. Burnham supporters say they are backing him because he has the best chance of winning, will unite the party and will be the best opposition to the Conservatives. The answers from Cooper supporters are similar, though there is less emphasis on party unity. For Kendall supporters the key reason to back her is seen as having the best change of winning, followed by the being the strongest opposition – 31% of her supporters say they are backing her as a break from Ed Miliband’s party, and only 10% see her as a unifier. The drivers for supporters of Jeremy Corbyn contrast sharply with the other three – only 5% of his supporters say they are backing him as the candidate who has the best chance of winning in 2020, only 5% are backing him as a unifier, the reasons are overwhelmingly because they think he has the best policies and because they think he is a break from New Labour.

517 Responses to “Ipsos MORI/Standard – CON 37, LAB 31, LDEM 10, UKIP 9”

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  1. Colin

    The Labour List poll is interesting and instructive. It confirms that Kendall’s votes will largely break to Cooper, I presume for gender and right/left spectrum reasons. This is what Phil Haines and I were speculating about.

    If things don’t change significantly between now and the papers going out, then it looks very much as if Corbyn will comfortably top the first preference votes, with Burnham and Cooper trailing. Kendall will probably finish last, although I suspect it will be close. Her votes will largely tip towards Cooper, and I then think it could be mighty close between Cooper and Burnham.

    And then I think it could be very close between Corbyn and whoever becomes his challenger.

    An awful lot depends upon whether Corbyn ‘wobbles’ as the big day approaches. In particular, how will he respond to the idea that he doesn’t want to be PM, and will stand aside before 2020. Does he announce that he will automatically resign in 2018, and perhaps stand again, having redefined and reorganised the party in the meantime?

    Corbyn at 7/2 looks a decent bet, as does Cooper at 5/2. I wouldn’t be supporting Burnham at evens, even though he is still probably a justifiable favourite, just.

  2. Going back to the last thread on the Labour leadership race.

    The labour list article, while being very poor as a poll with any thing like a proper sample, is more interesting in the way it breaks down the preferences of each candidates supporters second preferences.

    If it is correct and Liz Kendal is first out then, as her supporters are more likely to support Cooper and Burnham supports are more inclined to vote for JC than Coopers, the real race is to be second after the first round of second preferences have been allocated.

    If Cooper is in the final run off JC wins, if Burnham is in the run off it is then to close to call.

    Hope that makes sense.

  3. How did Labour end up here? I mean, Jeremy Corbyn ? For pete’s sake, he couldn’t be our Prime Minister.
    Dave and George must think it’s Christmas every day at the moment.

  4. @Lizh

    “What makes one look electable?”

    Apologies for not replying to your question about why i thought Corbyn looked attractive (to me) but not electable.

    Well, to judge from the Wikipedia entry he is a member of the socialist campaign group, writes a weekly column for the Morning Star, is a republican, has close connections with the IRA, is an animal rights campaigner and supports the Chagossians,

    I regard all these things as entirely respectable and his support for the Chagossians as admirable. However, these issues are hostages to fortune in the hands of the British Press and I cannot see the British Public electing such a man. Nor apparently do his supporters as apparently hardly any of them are voting for him on the grounds that he will get in.

    That said, I personally would like a lot more clarity from the Labour party on the living wage, their anti-poverty stance, being anti-war, how they would get more houses built, how far and in what circumstances they would renationalise things and so on. I like what I understand Corbyn to be saying on a lot of this. (If he would scrap HS2 and steal Osborne’s Northern Power House rhetoric I would like him even more) So for me the best outcome would be a Burnham or Cooper win and Corbyn in their cabinet!

    Having sorted out which in my mind I had better get on with rejoining the Labour party which I left over Iraq and put my vote somewhere near where my mouth is.

  5. Good morning all.

    CON 37%, LAB 31%, LDEM 10%, UKIP 9%

    Con’s 6 points ahead of Labour? I would had thought the Tories would hold a double digit lead over Labour when you factor in the splits.cracks and woeful leadership contest.

    UKIP melting away and some recovery for the Lib/Dems!! I’m still holding out for the aftermath of the EU referendum before I make assertions on Tory and UKIP fortunes.



    What is the significance of 2018 in your post?

  7. I think it is becoming more obvious every day that the Labour leadership contest is badly timed and over-long. I was told that there are 80 (yes, eighty) hustings. I know they are repeating themselves over, and over, and over again. Whatever the merits of each of the four, they surely will have demonstrated stamina.

  8. As to the poll on the parties, it does not look like the Conservatives are making any headway despite Welfare Bill woes for Labour.

  9. The lack of a post-victory bounce in the polls suggests that it was the Tories who had a successful “37% strategy”, rather than Labour with a “35% strategy”. It’s well off their very steady vote share of 1983-1992, but it’s still enough to win as long as Labour keep getting about 30%.

    Conceivably, the Tories could start winning >40% at elections if UKIP (or at least BLUKIP) decline after an EU referendum loss. Of course, the referendum may have a similar result to Scotland, where the losing side develops a firm relationship of trust and understanding with a new set of supporters. All of which is a long-winded way of saying that I don’t know what impact, if any, the EU referendum will have on the 2020 election, but it has the potential to have a big effect, and this effect is unpredictable based on the Scottish experience.

  10. (Sorry for the phrase “Scottish experience”. It sounds like the name of a trendy travel company.)

  11. Political language plays differently to different audiences. If you say “do you believe your candidate has the best chance of winning?” to a Kendall supporter, they’ll agree enthusiastically; her positioning is all about winning, or rather (less cynically) about the flexible, pragmatic idealism of the Blair years, which she and her followers believe is both best for the country and the only way to win elections. (Only among Kendall supporters is ‘winning the election’ the most common response of all.) Ask the same question to a Corbyn supporter and it won’t have the same ring at all – to a principled socialist the whole idea of choosing policies *for the sake of winning* has the ring of cynicism. (Blair’s genius was making a plausible case that election-winning policies were also the best, so there wasn’t any opposition between idealism and cynicism. Nice work if you can swallow it.)

    Similarly, asking about “what’s best for the country” sounds positive and new-Labour-y to some people, reactionary and right-wing to the Left; talking about “people like me” sounds negative (selfish) to some, positive (class-conscious) to the Left. It’s also worth mentioning, of course, that Corbyn never went into the election to win it; the idea was always to put a left-wing stake in the ground and try to broaden the debate a bit. Nobody ever expected that Corbyn would *be* the debate.

    What’s most extraordinary about those figures – a Corbyn Supporter Writes – is how little the other three’s supporters seem to value policy. It certainly jibes with the almost total absence of ‘policy-talk’ that we’ve heard from them, but it makes me wonder what those people actually believe in. A Labour government, and then what?

  12. @Phil

    “What’s most extraordinary about those figures is how little the other three’s supporters seem to value policy”

    The purpose of having Corbyn in the contest was to make the other candidates talk about policy – and further to make them talk about strategy, as Labour has loads of perfectly reasonable policies, but lacks a strategy and a narrative.

    Unfortunately none of the three have risen to the challenge, which is why Corbyn is doing so well. Both Milibands had quite a lot to say last time…..

  13. I see from the Mori tables that the Tory lead in England is also 6% – compared with 9.4% in May. That would return us to a Hung Parliament.

  14. The polling of labour at 31% is, to say the least, interesting given the Corbyn/ splits issues that are at the forefront.
    Is this a case of no publicity is bad?
    Alternatively is it a sign that the bottom has been reached by labour (no significant change from general election result).
    Given the position of the SNP in recent polls (albeit for Holyrood) showing incremental percentage gains, and therefore not even a minor boost to Labour from the Scottish electorate, it would seen that there is a core vote for Labour, which will (at present) survive many shocks.
    The key issue for Labour will be how to increase from that. Why are policies which appear popular in the country e.g. rail privatisation, not attractive to the Kendall/Burnham/Cooper supporters (if they are pragmatic Idealists). Further Given that Corby is generally described as a polite and co-operative individual is it expected that all of the policies which he believes in would become party policies, would he not compromise on some?
    There is a fluidity in Labour which should be watched. I foresee a split, but from the SDP type right which rejoined the party under Blair. Will we then see history repeated with SDP mark II joining the rump of the LD’s to create “a new force in British politics”? Just a thought!

  15. The other three candidates are all modern politicians in that they don’t seem to have any core beliefs other than to get power in a vaguely leftish government. Corbyn does actually believe in something and says so, regardless of the electoral effect.
    Though I agree with hardly anything he says he does deserve respect for that, in the same way that Dennis Skinner deserves respect.

    In a strange way Corbyn reminds me of Mrs Thatcher in that she came in after a long period of trimming and compromise by the Tory party by Heath and his predecessors and just went for policies that she believed in.

  16. Corbyn might not be such a bad choice. If he does well, he does well. If he does badly they have some chance of getting rid of him and choosing a new leader before the election. Assuming he can hold the party together. Maybe the new leader would be better than the current candidates David M?! ;-)

    I just think that with Cooper or Burnham they might end up with someone not quite good enough to win an election but not quite bad enough to sack….ie a re- run of the last 5 years.

  17. I would expect an SDP mk2 party to be unsuccessful, mainly because the Tory leadership at least is socially liberal. People who are Tory leaners can vote Tory at the moment without feeling too much guilt, so they do not need a Tory-lite party. The few who do are the rump who stuck with Nick Clegg. I don’t think there are enough voters to sustain two Lib Dem parties.

    I would also expect defectors to resign and run by-elections in the current political climate. Tristram Hunt trying to run on an SDP-style ticket in Stoke on Trent would be an amusing spectacle.

  18. Whether or not Corbyn could win a General Election, I don’t think he’d make a good party leader. This is on the grounds that serial rebels are generally not leader types. IDS is a case in point. Again, there are parallels with IDS in that he was a rebel and popular with the grassroots. But are Labour ruthless enough to ditch Corbyn before the election? Have they ever done that before?

  19. I still think we need to be careful about reading anything, let alone a lot into a single poll.

  20. Hawthorn
    Quite right. I think we’re all just playing “what if”.

  21. I cant see Corbyn being able to be sacked without a massive split. If he did his core supporters would only vote a for a limited number of MP’s who either have all the same flaws as him or a total newcomers. And as they mostly not concerned with wining but rather have a strong opposition they wont tolerate someone being elected unopposed without resigning the party.

  22. Colin

    My reference to 2018 is explained by most of the posts that have followed yours.

    The current situation is that Corbyn is a serious contender and could well win. As this becomes accepted during the rest of the ‘campaign’, people inside and outside the Labour Party are sure to ask if he intends to lead the Party into a GE in 2020. I’m not sure he has clearly answered that yet, and his response could be crucial to his chances.

    Were he to take the leadership, but offer a re-run before the next election, he would have to realistically do so in 2018, to give a new leader time to bed in before the GE.

    I agree with other commentators that at least Corbyn comes across as sincere and principled. You can clearly go a long way with those two qualities.

  23. The only Labour leader I can think of who was pushed before a general election was George Lansbury, leader from 1932 to 1935, who resigned after party conference rejected his pacifist position. Perhaps no coincidence that Lansbury is the leader with the most parallels with Corbyn.

  24. @Phil

    The lack of policy talk from the candidates is because they want to avoid a Mitt Romney problem.

    Romney if you recall managed to get elected Governor of Massachusetts, a liberal state. And then successfully enacted an early version of Obamacare – so you would think he was the ideal Republican to win over floating voters (independents as they call them there).

    But in order to win the nomination as the Republican candidate, he had to tack sharply right. I think he even ended up slating his own healthcare bill!

    And once you’ve said those things, you can’t un-say them.

    The independent voters thought, wow, he used to be moderate but now he’s totally converted to Tea Party politics, it’s too risky to make him president.

    Given what he’s said about the Confederate flag and other things, he likely stayed moderate the whole time. But he fibbed to one audience, and the other audience were not sure whether he was fibbing to them.

    So the candidates who are being careful and avoiding hostages to fortune are being smart. They know they have a general election to win – and you can’t do that by fibbing to anyone, whether base or general public. Better to stay silent and wait till you are addressing the general voter before talking policy and then say what you think.

    It does mean that Lab will have to choose based on character rather than policy.

  25. @Charles

    “However, these issues are hostages to fortune in the hands of the British Press and I cannot see the British Public electing such a man. Nor apparently do his supporters as apparently hardly any of them are voting for him on the grounds that he will get in.”

    First of all I don’t think there is any evidence to suggest that his supporters don’t think he will get in. I think they are supporting him whether he gets in or not.

    Inspite of the recent media attacks on him including one very nasty and despicable one from John Mann MP, Corbyn’s support has not diminished. People he is attracting are not bothered what the press say about him and neither is he. That is his strength. His supporters are the old core Labour ones and lots of new, young people. They are not the ones that think that the only thing that matters is getting elected.

  26. Candy
    “It does mean that Lab will have to choose based on character rather than policy.”

    That’s exactly why Corbyn is popular. Being afraid to mention policy is surely a sign of poor character because in effect they are saying “I don’t believe in anything very strongly, I just want to get elected”. I think many voters are fed up with this approach by politicians of the old parties. Hence the rise of SNP, UKIP, Greens etc.

  27. Good afternoon all..

    Scottish subsample figures are : SNP 43%, Conservatives 27%, Labour 13%, Liberal Democrats 10%, Greens 6%

    It’s only a sub sample but its a bad yin for Labour. I was going to say Labour would be wiped out in Scotland in this poll but that would be cruel.

  28. Given the rotten deal that under-30s get (loadsa debt and renting with no end in sight), it should not be a surprise that they are more left-wing than my 30-40 year generation. It should also not be a surprise that they won’t be satisfied with half-measures on the policy front.

  29. MILLIE


    The idea that someone would win & accept leadership, with a stated intention to give it up before 2020 seems daft to me.

    So we would have a Corbyn led shadow team , assuming he could assemble one, creating Foreign & Economic Policy which would be internationally controversial ( to say the least) only for another crashing of gears , rows, confusion etc etc before the GE.

    I may have misinterpreted your thoughts.

    But anyway-I really can’t believe that Labour will elect Corbyn as their leader.

  30. @PeteB – “Being afraid to mention policy is surely a sign of poor character because in effect they are saying “I don’t believe in anything very strongly, I just want to get elected”. ”

    Nope, it’s the opposite. They’re saying “I’m not going to fib to get elected leader”.

    It would be very very simple for all of them to pander to the base and tell people what they want to hear. Mitt Romney was the one with poor character, because that’s what he did. And then what?

    The bliss of permanent opposition? Contrary to what people think, “opposition” is about as much use as standing there reading the phone directory – you achieve the same against a majority government.

    And secondly – the next general election is five years away. Who on earth makes policy that far ahead when none of us know what the world will look like in 2020? For all we know we’ll be out of the EU, which will require a very different policy set than if we stay in the EU. So getting annoyed because the candidates don’t have a crystal ball is unreasonable.

    It’s best to choose leaders based on character anyway, because the future is completely unpredictable and you want someone who won’t panic or get flustered into wrong decisions when the hurricane of events blows in.

  31. P.S. Just to illustrate how unpredictable stuff is:

    Did anyone predict during the 2001 general election that 9/11 was a few months away and the govt would get diverted with war?

    Did anyone predict during the 2005 general election that Wall Street and Lehman brothers would melt down and we’d have a financial crash?

    Did anyone predict during the 2010 general election that there would be a Scottish referendum?

    In expect the next five years will be just as unpredictable as the last fifteen.

  32. @ Julian Ware-Lane,

    I think the first priority for the next Labour leader has to be to find whoever decided on this leadership contest format and throw them into the sea. If it was Harriet Harman that would kill two birds with one stone, really.

    @ Phil,

    That’s a bit unfair on Burnham, who has been banging on about his “Bring adult social care into the NHS” plan for literally years.

    Cooper I agree seems to be cultivating vagueness as a deliberate strategy. Kendall is such a bad communicator I can’t tell whether she doesn’t have policies or she just can’t explain them.

    But I think 70% of their supporters don’t cite policy as their reason for backing them because Cooper and Burnham are pretty similar ideologically and even Kendall isn’t that far distant from them. If you’re choosing between the three of them you probably aren’t choosing primarily on the basis of policy.

    If the leadership contest were Jeremy Corbyn, Dennis Skinner, John McDonnell and Liz Kendall, would you still cite policy as your reason for backing Corbyn in particular?

  33. @Candy

    So how do you assess their characters if all they do is be evasive with their answers?

    By the way all the events you quoted are consequences of bad policies and was waiting to happen.
    1.constant meddling in middle east politics because of oil
    2.deregulation of banks
    3.taking Scotland for granted

  34. At the risk of sounding cocky, I did see the crash coming from early 2006.

    The government’s programme is completely dependent on continued fairly strong economic growth over the next five years. It seems that their plan is for people moving towards a form of rugged individualism as economic opportunity allows them.

    If that doesn’t happen, they will have to radically change course or they will be utterly stuffed. Not as stuffed as the people who would be economically ruined though.

  35. @LizH

    I agree with all that you say. Sadly, however, the fact that Corbyn’s supporters are old Labour and the enthusiastic young, that they think he might get in and that they will vote for him irrespective of his likelihood of his winning an election does not mean that he will win.

    As for whether his likelihood of winning is relevant I think it is. If he doesn’t win there is no chance of gaining the things in which he believes and plenty of chances that things will get even worse from his point of view.

    As I said, I personally would like a much stronger and clearer message from Labour. Over the past five years it has supinely conceded to the Tories both the economic argument and the foolish idea that in terms of services Public= bureaucratic and wasteful while Private =efficient and good. So I want some of Corbyn’s ideas but I just don’t feel that with him in charge there will be any chance of getting them implemented.

    Whether or not there is any chance that they would be implemented with any of the others, I don’t know. Having since this morning joined the Labour party I had better set out about finding out what on earth it is that they are saying.

  36. It is a clear set of authentic principles that they should be setting out rather than just a load of platitudes. These could be illustrated by setting out a few policies that would be worthwhile in any given situation.

    Basically, they need to stop looking like careerist hacks.

  37. Not sure which bit of the format you mean spearmint but the man responsible for the new arrangements was Ray Collins gs of labour and ags at the tgwu and blairite supporter of bill morris former tgwu gs.

    If I recall tony blair was so impressed by the new arrangements he said he wished he had introduced them.

    As I have said before will labour refuse to issue ballot papers to any of the registered supporters if it can prove they are members of other political parties.

  38. Warof dreams
    G Lansbury is the leader most similar to J Corbyn but even this comparison is instructive.

    A minor figure compared to those before and after, nevertheless Lansbury had a much richer experience in leadership than J Corbyn.
    He had worked in Britain and abroad, he had been a leading figure in movements for women’s suffrage, anti-imperialism and reform of the poor law, known across the country.

    He had been a Poor Law Guardian and served on a national commission on the issue. He helped to found and edited a newspaper with a mass popular readership. He was a local councillor pioneering on many issues and went to prison in protest at the uneven nature of police charges between poor and rich areas. He had been a cabinet minister firmly trusted by colleagues who amongst many other things pushed the Lido concept especially in Hyde Park.

    Somehow Mr Corbyn doesn’t quite measure up and I would expect the media to point this up…once he was made leader.

    What has he actually led?

  39. Am I right in thinking that this poll represents a decline in UKIp voting intentions? And if so are there any reasons for this. Is it just that UKIP are currently out of people’s minds?

    I note that several large sock echange mergers have just been announded: the sale of the FT to Japanese interests and the merger of Coral and Ladborkes. Could I poing out that in the pst such events have on severla occasions heralded an overheated stock market preceding a crahs. A massive example was NatWest”s foolish acquisition of a Dutch bank in 2008. Are we in the run-up to a stock market crash after the Summer break, perhaps in September and October. Osborne’s budget proposals could easily intensify such events.

    Further, such events might well precipitate a shift change in political intentions, particularly if at around the same time Labour goes into crisis after a Corbyn leadership elction win (or even near miss).

  40. @ Barney,

    What had Tony Blair ever led? He’d never been in charge of anything with spending power before he became Labour leader except possibly his own household budget, and I imagine Cherie ran that. A barrister and then a shadow minister- no experience of executive power whatsoever.

    Likewise David Cameron. Employee in an advertising agency -> spad -> Shadow Cabinet -> Conservative leader -> Number 10.

    Compared to either of them Corbyn’s “I was chair of a council committee forty years ago” is an impressive record.

  41. yes!!! I knew ukip would sink after the election

  42. “I note that several large sock echange mergers have just been announded: the sale of the FT to Japanese interests and the merger of Coral and Ladborkes. Could I poing out that in the pst such events have on severla occasions heralded an overheated stock market preceding a crahs.”

    Bloody ‘ell Fred, and I thought my psts were bad for typos!! Not sure I like the idea of exchanging socks, but like the idea of a word called “poing”, and Ladborks made me grin a little.

  43. “It’s best to choose leaders based on character anyway, because the future is completely unpredictable and you want someone who won’t panic or get flustered into wrong decisions when the hurricane of events blows in.”


    Now, see, I like my leaders to panic, early and often. Then they can avoid the greater panic of a genuine crisis, or else fight it more serenely from a position of strength.

    Thus, Gordon should have been panicking in advance of the Crunch. “Sh1t, Darling, we deregulated the banks!! You know what happened last time, it’s why we bothered to regulate them. They could implode any minute. We have to do something before it’s too late…”

    As opposed to running around afterwards against the clock as the banks hang on a precipice and the economy tanks. “Darling!! whadda we do?!!”
    “Well Gordon, it’s a little late in the day but we could always get peeps to scrap their cars. At least people will notice and think we’re doing summat. Whereas QE is invisible to most…”

  44. My apologies for the Typos, Carfrew. I hope the points got through though.

  45. @Spearmint
    “What had Tony Blair ever led? He’d never been in charge of anything with spending power before he became Labour leader except possibly his own household budget, and I imagine Cherie ran that. A barrister and then a shadow minister- no experience of executive power whatsoever.”

    I believe he was Secretary of State for Education, Education, Education.

  46. @Spearmint

    Oh would that my last post were true!

    He had been Shadow Home, Employment and Energy Secretary. Not at the same time, mind.

  47. @LizH,

    I’m not sure 9/11 is really linked to meddling in the Middle East over oil. Or not in any way that is sufficiently direct to finger that as the main reason.

    I suppose if you call reversing the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait, and protecting Saudi Arabia from attack by Iraq “meddling” then maybe. It’s the presence of nasty females, Christians, Jews and other impure Americans on Holy Soil that was the root cause of 9/11, allied to the distinct lack of Western meddling in Afghanistan, allowing it to become a failed state where such things can be planned and directed.

  48. @NeilA

    What I was trying to say to Candy was that consequences of policies can have long term implications. If the policies affect peoples’ lives negatively the consequences of that will appear sometime and people shouldn’t be surprised. By meddling I meant things like propping up the Shah in Iran, The Saudi Regime, supporting the Israelis against the Palestinians, supporting Gaddafi & Saddam when it suited us etc..

  49. Lizh – “By the way all the events you quoted are consequences of bad policies and was waiting to happen.”

    Are you telling us with a straight face that you predicted them all during the previous elections?

    So soothsayer, what’s going to happen before 2020? Give us details, we poor mortals really want to know! :-)

  50. @Candy

    Just because you can’t predict exactly when they will happen doesn’t mean politicians don’t know there will be some consequences. Policies shouldn’t be made on the hop or just for the 5 years a party may be in power. With some policies like deregulation of the banks they had signs way before it all went to pots. If they are any good they should do a risk analysis of every policy they implement.

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