Things remain very quiet on the polling front, but we do at least have the weekly ICM tracker of EU referendum voting intention. Latest figures are REMAIN 46%, LEAVE 38%. 46% is the highest ICM have recorded for Remain in their weekly tracker, though it’s still well within the normal margin of error. For now the picture from ICM’s regular polling remains one of a small but stable lead for Remain, rather than any movement in either direction.

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122 Responses to “Latest ICM Euro poll – Remain 46%, Leave 38%”

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  1. Given the current visit of the delightful Mr Modi led me to look into the electoral mandate of his loopy party (I have been to Gujarat before anyone takes me up on that description).

    The BJP has a majority of 20 with a 31.3% on a 66.4% turnout, although some allied parties effectively boost that figure.

    Modi is PM because of a divided opposition rather than being overwhelmingly popular. Is there any other majority government with such a weak popular mandate?

  2. @ Jack Sheldon

    ‘All that said, I think that there must surely be something more to the renegotiation that we don’t know about.’

    The unions are certain that there will also be renegotiation of employment protection legislation and the Working Time Directive. The secrecy surrounding the exact nature of Cameron/Osborne proposals has even been likened to the secrecy of the TTIP negotiations.

  3. @ Hawthorn

    Very good but it’s hard to laugh seeing the consequences.

    Do you (or anyone) know the current status of the EU-India FTA? It has been in its final stages for the last 7y. I assume that Mr Modi’s visit is very much focussed on concluding the trade deal.

  4. Holyrood Magazine are reporting that a new…
    TNS Scotland poll puts support for SNP on 58 per cent in constituency vote and 52 per cent in list vote. Support for Labour rises to 24 per cent in constituency and 25 per cent on list


    No sign of the tables yet on the TNS site.

  5. Will the news that thousands of tax inspectors will be made redundant

    cause a surge in Tory popularity?

  6. @SYZYGY

    I think that would be a very silly thing to include as it could drive parts of the left towards exit, and would probably only find favour with those Tories who want to leave anyway.

  7. Ultimately what will make a difference is whether there is something that can be sold as an effective control on immigration… like it or not, this is consistently the number one issue when people are polled (both generally, and on the EU negotiation specifically) and at the moment there are very large numbers of EU migrants coming in. For the reasons I said earlier (not wanting to help encourage Brexit) I wouldn’t rule out the other leaders conceding on something rather more substantive than what’s been briefed so far. I’m sure they’ll be trying for it – whilst having to balance the fact that what might win the referendum might not be in the long term interests of the economy.

  8. Barbazenzero

    Now up on TNS site. (they must have noticed your comment. :-) )

  9. TNS seem to understate CON vis-a-vis LAB compared to other Scottish pollsters.

  10. Jack Sheldon

    Agreed. I wonder if there are methodological reasons?

    1. TNS match their sample geographically, as well as demographically

    2. Candy suggested some time ago, that the TNS panel is more consumer than politically orientated

    3. I haven’t seen that TNS has changed methodology since 2015 (at least in Scotland – where the 2015 polls were pretty accurate), whereas others have.

    Whether these factors make any difference? – I have no idea!

  11. SYZYGY

    Modi’s mandate is weaker than Cameron’s (it was not actually intended as a joke post but the parallels did occur to me as I posted).

    I don’t know the details of the trade deal. The BJP economic policy probably needs to be judged in the context of a corrupt state (relaxing pollution controls in a corrupt country just shifts money between different parts of the elite by avoiding the need for bribery). The answer of course is honest governance but that was not on offer for the Indians in 2014. It is the other stuff which is really unpleasant.

    Another parallel is that the BJP support is very low in the culturally distinct south of India, which is an another parallel with the UK.

    The BJP have also been thrashed in recent state elections in Delhi and Bihar, Let’s see if the parallel with the UK carries on in London next year!

  12. Another parallel is that Modi (seen as a good communicator) is seen by many in the BJP as arrogant and authoritarian.

    “Ultimately what will make a difference is whether there is something that can be sold as an effective control on immigration.”
    Harking back to what we know of the EU and its doings, this morning’s announcements of the agreed Trust Fund on measures related to migration from Africa, suggest that it will increase legitimate migration rather than reduce illicit migration. Notably the Euro 1.871 billion budget consists of 1.8b. from the EU, some taken from the Commission’s EDF aid budget, and – as an indicator of support from member countries – 71m. from pledges of member countries,mainly the 3m minimum, as in the case of the UK and Germany. to ensure membership of the Strategic Board.
    Mainly the Trust will provide funds for projects which development projects which will increase domestic employment,, and for strengthening of borders and migration, but also, of primary interest to African governments legitimisation of the migration to Europe which provides a major part of the national income of a number of African countries. The 1.8b. compares with existing 10.0b. development aid under EDF and related programmes similarly to strengthen economies, governance and employment capacities.
    We’ll see how the closing statement comes out this evening, but these actions – important though they may be to future EU policy on inward migration – will I suspect neither be known to or relevant to UK voters current concerns with the level or effects of immigration to the UK, or of much impact on UK migration policy.

  14. Corr. Mainly the Trust will provide funds which will increase domestic employment [in the concerned African countries]……

  15. @Hawthorn

    “Modi’s mandate is weaker than Cameron’s (it was not actually intended as a joke post but the parallels did occur to me as I posted).”

    Ah yes, but could Cameron sell out Madison Square Garden and Wembley Stadium? :-)

    Mind you, Cameron probably attracts more Sikh voters than Modi.

  16. And another EU poll! (no idea about the methodology)

    with the GQR analysis here

    Remain 42% : Leave 39%

  17. With such a narrow victory on the TU bill, and its implications for Labour, it was surprising to see the number of missing MPs for the vote (Meacher excluded):-

    Debbie Abrahams
    Ann Clwyd
    Rosie Cooper
    Mary Creagh
    Thangam Debbonaire
    Natascha Engel
    Rob Flello
    Barry Gardiner
    Andrew Gwynne
    Harriet Harman
    Harry Harpham
    Margaret Hodge
    Kate Hoey
    Lindsay Hoyle
    Mike Kane
    Catherine McKinnell
    Michael Meacher
    Alan Meale
    Steve Pound
    Yasmin Qureshi
    Jamie Reed Copeland
    Virendra Sharma
    Karl Turner
    Holly Walker-Lynch

  18. Craig

    I am not surprised that Michael Meacher was not at the vote.

    Is pairing in operation at the moment?

  19. Craig

    I think I missed part of your post when I replied.


  20. @Craig

    Michael Meacher is dead.
    Thangam Debbonaire is on leave to receive cancer treatment.
    Lindsay Hoyle and Natascha Engel are Deputy Speakers and thus don’t vote (this creates no disadvantage as the Speaker and the other Deputy Speaker are both from the government side).

    I can’t explain the other absences though it is very common for MPs to be given leave to miss votes (as far as possible a pairing system will operate so that the number of absences on the govt. and opposition side cancel each other out). This was never a winnable vote – despite the fact that a handful of Tories abstained – and so some may simply have opted to head back to their constituencies a few hours early ahead of the short November recess that began on Wednesday.

  21. Kellner: I expect a reasonably clear win for Britain to stay in EU

    Bugger! That’s UK out, then.

  22. ON
    It’ll give you another chance at your own referendum if UK leaves.

  23. To add to the reasons for Labour absences, Sir Alan Meale won’t have voted because he was one of the chairs of the Public Bill Committee (by convention the Chair doesn’t take part in later stages).

  24. OLDNAT

    Many thanks for the link – I’ve been out all afternoon. Putting the numbers into Scotland Votes suggests the LD’s will retain their 5 seats, which makes me wonder whether the SV algorithm has the O & S seats built in unless the LD vote drops to zero.

    On the analysis page, I particularly liked the closing:
    “One crumb of comfort for Labour may be that, asked the same question two years ago, the then Labour leader Johann Lamont was liked by 7% of electors and 41% did not know who she was – these are similar figures to Dugdale’s but Lamont had been Scottish Labour leader for about two years by then, while Dugdale is just starting out.”

    I suspect that will not quite compensate for Sturgeon being more liked by Lab voters than Dugdale.

  25. Barbazenzero

    The choice of which table to use does make a difference to the minor parties.

    Using only those certain to vote, Scotland Votes predicts SNP 56 : Lab 35 : Con 11 Grn 5 : LD 2.

    While the regional crossbreaks are wee, if they are roughly accurate, then the Greens have a good chance of taking 2 seats in Lothian (which puts Land Reformer Andy Wightman in) along with 1 each in H&I, Central, Glasgow and South – assuming the undecideds split along similar lines to the committed! :-)

    Tories seem a certainty to take Ettrick, Roxburgh and Berwickshire, and Labour to hold one Glasgow/Central seat, perhaps. Whether the LDs hold Shetland may depend on 2 Senators from the College of Justice, who have gone off to Avizandum (they say – I think a top Edinburgh restaurant with a fine wine cellar is more likely).

    If the constituencies are pretty predictable, then there should be a reasonable chance of predicting the List allocations.

  26. Sorry. SNP 76

  27. Old Nat

    Many thanks for yours of 10.16 last night. As you say, there are some quite marked differences between the figures for Wales, England and Scotland. This leads on the question of to what extent many southern Conservatives have a real handle on the UK as a whole, as opposed to just their own patch.

  28. @TOH – 8.32 a.m.

    “… too many are scared of going it alone”

    Personally I’m not afraid of a ‘courageous’ decision! After all, I voted ‘Yes’ last year. But when it comes to the EU I feel that Bigfatron, (12.32 p.m.) and John Chanin (8.31 p.m.) are quite correct to point out that many younger people have grown up thinking of themselves as Europeans, and that those who have lived and studied in an international environment (e.g. University) tend to have less of a problem with the idea of transnational government. After all, if most of the problems we face are international in nature, then surely it makes sense to belong to an international organisation which may (!!) be able to do something positive.

  29. OLDNAT
    The choice of which table to use does make a difference to the minor parties.

    Fair point. I haven’t had time to look at the tables yet, but I agree that the regional crossbreaks could well make a significant difference in the plurality seats. The quick SV I ran gave the SGP only 3 seats, but I agree that it may well do significantly better on the lists, if only because of regional targeting.

    Whether the LDs retain 5 seats or drop to 2 or fewer may well not depend on the decision of the learned Senators but on how the MSM present that decision, whichever way it goes.

  30. Andrew Gwynne is in charge of the Oldham West by-election campaign so may have been tied up there.

  31. Mr N

    Do they play politics very roughly in Oldham?

  32. John Curtice opines on EU polling, and speculates on the difference between online and telephone/face-to-face polling.

    Incidentally, Curtice was an expert witness in the Carmichael trial. Is the first time a psephologist has been called in this way?

  33. John B – “I am alone in seeing the possibility that Cameron will not survive the ‘negotiations’?”

    Cameron is bullet-proof as the first Conservative in over 20 years to deliver an overall majority. He’s also popular with the voters. The only leaders who get toppled are those who become unpopular with the public, at which point their enemies seize the opportunity to remove them. He’s going to survive and leave at the time of his choosing regardless of what happens.

    The real question is who is he negotiating with on the EU side, is it Merkel, is it Juncker, is it someone else? In normal times, the EU would be fully focused on the issue of keeping Britain in – there’d be a whole team of them devoted to it. At the moment they are beset with other problems (the migrant issue, and don’t forget money for Greece will be up for renegotiation in the next six months). The Spanish are having general elections in December. The French presidential election is in 2017. Germany has to have elections by Oct 2017 at the latest – and prior to the migrant crisis, Merkel wanted to run again…

    They’re all so focused on their own problems, I don’t think any of them are treating the UK referendum seriously (most are assuming that Remain will win).

    All it takes is a crisis happening close to the referendum date, for the Don’t Knows to swing to Leave. And the EU is getting more and more careless about allowing these crises to appear and then escalate.

    The most damaging thing is the impression that no-one is in control and that the rule of law has broken down, eg people choosing to abandon the Dublin agreement at will, and choosing to apply capital controls at will, border controls at will, regardless of what the treaties say. Negotiations mean dip-squat in that context because they’ll get ignored along with all the other agreements and treaties. Unless we take the new chaos as a sign that we can stay and do whatever we like – for example, could Cameron just unilaterally apply rules to free movement of people on the grounds that if everyone else can ignore treaties we can too? People would be happy to vote Remain on that basis! :-)

  34. The scent and dust and feel of an academic second-hand bookshop ar 6pm in the evening are nauseating, thought Bond…

    In my ongoing impersonation of JR Hartley, today I have been in Skoob Bookshop in Bloomsbury, Waterstones in the University of London, and Waterstones in the LSE.

    My feet hurt.

    No joy, and it’s now looking like if I want a copy of “The 1975 Referendum” or “Full-Hearted Consent” or even Anthony’s 70’s Gallup list, I’m going to have to fork out money commensurate to its worth. And I was so hoping for an algamic economy…:-(

    Incidentally, if anybody wants a cheap copy of the full Palgrave series on the European Union, I think Skoob’s got the full set. I was going to fork out for the Hix, but then I remembered that I actually have a life…:-)

  35. @Candy

    I wouldn’t be quite so sure he’ll leave completely at a moment of his choosing, though I think the chances of him getting toppled Thatcher style are very slim indeed. I’m not sure the current batch of Tory MPs have the same killer instinct that those who stabbed Thatcher in the back do, and in any case lots of them wanted her out because they thought they’d lose their seats – with Corbyn in charge of Labour I don’t think many will be worried about that this time. If the referendum doesn’t go well for him there may well, though, be pressure for him to get on with stepping down rather than staying on as PM until 2020 (which I think is what he currently intends to do). And either way he’ll have to deal with the early stages of a leadership contest playing out from mid-term, if it hasn’t started already.


    I happened (coincidentally to mentioning it on here) to thumb a copy of The 1975 Referendum the other day (at UCL Library). Is there no way you can get access to a uni library anywhere? I don’t know if you’re in London but if you are there is always the British Library as a last resort – it is a bit of a faff (you have to present ID and so on to get access, have to surrender all of your belongings and can’t even take a pen into the main library) but it might be preferable to forking out?

  36. I’ve been sent some hugely fascinating data today. Sadly, I’m not allowed to share it with you. But suffice to say I am a very happy psephologist poring over this.

  37. @Jack Sheldon

    I know that some of my former universities offer extended facilities to alumni, but it’s not something I can get sorted quickly. However your British Library suggestion sounds like fun: I’ve always wanted to go. Do they let non-academics read, or are their reading tickets(?) limited to academics and students?

    Incidentally, the price of a new copy of “The 1975 Referendum” is £1,011. At that price I assume it’s bound in unicorn skin…

  38. @Martyn

    You should be fine to get in if you’re doing research. It is worth pre-registering (or whatever they call it) on the website first so you can request books before you go.

  39. “Cameron is bullet-proof as the first Conservative in over 20 years to deliver an overall majority. He’s also popular with the voters. The only leaders who get toppled are those who become unpopular with the public, at which point their enemies seize the opportunity to remove them. He’s going to survive and leave at the time of his choosing regardless of what happens.”

    This is a ‘cut out and keep’ comment.

    I have no idea where politics is going at present, and while the argument that Labour under Corbyn is likely to provide even a poor Tory government with little real threat is valid, let’s not forget the Lb Dems. If Tory support crumbles, there will be a window for Fallon to rebuild, and it’s likely to come from the blues.

    Usually, the great turns of sentiment come from unexpected and unplanned sources. The EU referendum is going to be messy for the blues, but probably not terminal. Cameron will campaign for remain, after getting some striking/meaningless [delete according to taste] concessions, the grumblers will grumble, and nothing very much might change, save for some party unity.

    The kind of things that may change the tide are issues closer to home. The private care home industry is in crisis, with one of the biggest providers on the edge of bankruptcy. Tory backbenchers are complaining about cuts. The NHS looks distinctly wobbly. Police authorities are withdrawing cover. Even Cameron himself has been slapped down by his local ward councilor.

    These things may pass unnoticed, but equally there is a gathering sense that as each year rolls by, the excess bloat from the public sector has been removed, and the notion of no frontline effects is wearing wafer thin.

    Europe remains a more or less esoteric issue, somewhat divorced from real life. If there are one or two ‘real; events that crystalise mounting unease in Tory ranks over the long term spending goals, then that’s a different ball game.

    I don’t think Cameron is as bomb proof as some think, and he has few real friends to count on if the waters get choppy.

  40. @Jack Sheldon

    Good to know, thank you


    You lucky, lucky……:-)

  41. In the weird and wacky world of local by-elections, the Greens just gained a seat… in Dorset!

  42. Jack Sheldon

    I see Britain Elects made a wee error in their report of the Ogmore Vale result – putting a plus instead of minus for the Independent vote share change. :-)

  43. For the record Labour GAINED the Ogmore Vale seat on Bridgend Council in Wales yesterday from the Independents, with Plaid (who won the seat in 2004) getting just 13% and Cons 6%. Opinion and real polls suggest Labour’s fortunes in Wales have taken an uptick since JC’s election, early days though …

  44. Survation poll – Normal weightings & likelihood to vote, with undecided removed

    Westminster (England only)
    Con 40% : Lab 32% : UKIP 17% : LD 7%

    EU (All GB)
    Remain 47% : Leave 53%

  45. Apologies to Survation – The EU question was asked in NI as well,

    England – Remain 46% : Leave 54%
    Wales – Remain 48% : Leave 52%
    Scotland – Remain 59% : Leave 41%
    NI – Remain 56% : Leave 44%

    Must be something to do with proximity to France. :-)

  46. @ Martyn

    As it was said above If you are registered, you can read whatever you want in the BL – but it may take time. Taking mobile phone pictures is OK if you are not criticised (books that could be damaged by photonic eruptions handled differently).

    It seems to me (checking three universities’ catalogue) that the book is widely available in university libraries.

  47. @Laszlo

    I’m not a student/academic. Can I get a university library card? I’m under the impression that I can’t

  48. Has it yet been defined who will be eligible to vote in the EU referendum? For instance, if EU nationals resident in UK, and UK expats living in the EU will be allowed, should pollsters try to ensure that these groups are adequately represented in their samples? In a close campaign, these could decide the result.

  49. @Craig – Thangam Debbonaire on your list has missed votes recently due to health problems.

    When we see these lists of MPs who’ve missed votes, I often wonder if it’s reasonable to assume that they have traded with a counterpart on the opposite benches abstaining too?

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