The Times have a YouGov poll tomorrow asking who people want to see as the next Conservative leader. Now, this is a question that I had got a bit bored of asking over the years: almost always Boris Johnson wins easily – he is the most recognisable of the Tory leadership contenders, obviously the most charismatic, and seems to have swung the trick of getting judged by the standards of a celebrity rather than the standards of a politician. However, in today’s poll he is pipped by Theresa May – 19% of the public think she would be the best candidate for the next leader of the Tories, 18% think Boris Johnson. To put this in context a similar question a week and a half ago had Johnson six points ahead of May, a fortnight ago Johnson was twelve points ahead of May.

This is, I hasten to add, polling of the general public, not of the people who decide. It is the votes of Conservative MPs and the party members that actually count, and they may very well have completely different views. However – part of Boris’s appeal to the Conservative party is his supposed ability to reach out to voters, his charisma and his public popularity are one of his primary selling points. If he isn’t the choice of the wider public… well.

Anyway, the really interesting thing will be if the increase in support for Theresa May among the general public is echoed among the Conservative electorate. For that, however, we will have to wait for some polling of Conservative party members…


1,010 Responses to “YouGov show May and Johnson neck-and-neck as public choice for next Tory leader”

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  1. MRJONES

    Re Passporting

    It basically means the ability for companies based in the UK to manage pensions etc. which are denominated in Euros without this we’re not allowed to touch them (apart from by setting up subsidiaries in the EU and moving people there).

    Nothing to do with actual passports but to do with the freedom to provide financial services.

  2. @Hawthorn

    “The right is actually already split between the Tories and UKIP. This did not prevent the Tories from being in government.”

    ———-

    this is partly because the left is also split with UKip…

  3. RICH

    FTSE is “fine” mainly due to international companies (which have large weightings towards the index) like the mining companies which are listed there doing well as people retreat to the bigger companies. Scraping the skin off the index, companies that are exposed to the UK economy more are hurting a bit.

    Most of the companies are down, I’m pretty sure it’s far too early to say “Everything is fine”.

    Equally, it’s too early to say “It’ll be a disaster.”

    I expect very volatile times ahead though.

  4. Alan

    ah, ty

  5. @ TOH

    “Nice to see the Footsie 100 end the day 0.3% above the close on 23.6.16, last lose before the referendum and a high point recently. The Footsie 250 is still down over 7% compared with 23rd but recovering well again today. The £ continued to make progress against the Dollar and the Euro.
    Of course there will be ups and downs in the future but there always will.”

    Pleased to see the FTSE 100 showing such buoyancy. No doubt aided in no small part by the good figures coming out of the US.

    As you say the FTSE 250 is down on its closing position pre-Brexit, but doing comparatively well for a market that has been bullish for some time in the face of some serious head winds.

    We shall see how things fair as the real economy consequences – good, ill or negligible of the referendum feed through.

    Hope you got some bargains on your favourite stocks (though I think you’re more interested in complex products), I bought heavily after omnishambles and sold through largely after the GE. Since then have been in a holding pattern of other investments and don’t intend to buy equity at the moment. My feeling is we have a long way to go down yet, though I have been wrong before.

  6. I got my hopes up a bit there.

    (still true though – if UK said no one who entered illegally would ever get a UK or EU passport, Calais would disappear)

  7. CARFREW

    That’s the thing, I still don’t think that is the case, or at least not before the referendum. Agreeing with UKIP on one issue is not the same as liking UKIP. Their support base would include some Labour voters from 20-odd years ago, but that has not been enough for them to break Labour in their Northern strongholds.

    There is no polling evidence of a shift similar to Labour-SNP in Scotland. If UKIP had stayed as Alan Sked founded it in the 1990s and was led by Nicola Sturgeon type of politician they would wipe the floor with Labour in the North but I don’t think they will as a golf club style party.

  8. Mr Jones
    I know you have a bee in your bonnet about Chilcott, but the Iraq war is history. I predict nothing new of much consequence is going to emerge.

    Obviously, if there was little news, the media would have a field day, but given all that is going on, Chilcott is just a side issue.

    And to paraphrase Morrisey, you write bl—y awful poetry.

  9. MRJONES

    “Calais would disappear”

    I hope the residents of Calais have been informed!

  10. And Blair, Straw and Campbell are all retired/finished.
    The caravan is moved on.
    I’d go back to your obsession with Muslim paedophile rings.

  11. Good evening all from a damp and windy Wokingham.

    Before the Lib/Dems and other silly people start trying to reverse the democratic EU referendum result it’s worthy of note that nearly 2 million more people voted leave in England than remain.

    There will be uproar if the political namby-pamby brigade with their bicycles and dated VW camper vans shuffling around London tried to tinker with the result. Provincial England will rise and revolt.

  12. If most Labour MPs split from the party membership to form a new grouping, and we see two rival parties at the next election, does control over the “Labour” name guarantee that faction most of the legacy votes?

    i.e. Will most existing Labour voters just continue to put a cross in the box marked “Labour Party”, or will they know that there are now two different Labours to choose from and act accordingly? (Obviously some will know, but how many?)

  13. Watson is not standing against Corbyn, which leaves Angela Eagle, who faces deselection in her constituency.

    Labour better find another one.

  14. @Mr Jones

    there are additional implications, because currently UK clearing houses handle a lot of the Euro-denomnated trades which our Euro buddies are jealously eyeing up. Last year the ECB tried to force such trades to be handled in the Eurozone but we managed to fight that off.

    may not be so lucky next time post-Brexit…

  15. Allan Christie,
    “Before the Lib/Dems and other silly people start trying to reverse the democratic EU referendum result it’s worthy of note that nearly 2 million more people voted leave in England than remain.”

    Are you saying that if the result had been 17 million for Remain, you and all other Eurosceptics should immediately cease all campaigning to leave the EU and stop even discussing the matter? Even if the Remain campaign later admitted that all of its major campaign claims were untrue and simply “aspirations”?

    That’s certainly not what Farage said when he thought he’d lost, he specifically said if it was 48 Leave -52 Remain there should be another referendum.

  16. @Hawthorn

    Thing is, if you look at the polling, and where UKip got their support from, once the press got stuck into immigration in the last parliament, Labour’s big polling lead went, and some of it went to UKip. UKip rose as Labour fell.

    Then of course you had further losses to Scots Nats etc.

  17. Edge of Seat

    The Electoral Commission rules on what names are allowed to appear on ballot papers – and any already registered aren’t allowed for the “new” party[1]

    The MPs could always pick a descriptive name like “The Conservative Labour Party of England (oh, and Wales as well).

    [1] It took the (somewhat analogous Free Kirk/UP Kirk 4 years of legal wrangling and an Act of Parliament to finally settle the case – so good luck with that one!

  18. Allan Christie,

    If I was The Other Howard I would be calling you out for unnecessarily insulting posting!

    But I am not! :)

    Just be careful about going on about England rather than the United Kingdom though or my fingers may hover irrevocably over the “L” word!

    BTW, the Lib Dems are not proposing to reverse anything other than through the democratic will of the people at a general election. An unlikely scenario, I agree, although since the vast majority of MPs in the current House of Commons would like to reverse the result if they could, not perhaps entirely impossible!

  19. ALLAN CHRISTIE

    If the LibDems won on a ticket of reversing the referendum, surely that is democratic if enough people vote for it? No decisions are forever and if the will of the people changes, anything can be reversed.

    I doubt they can unite the 48% of the country but if they did, they’d probably get a majority on those sorts of numbers.

    It’d certainly bring into question where the mandate lay. I’d tend to suggest that the later mandate more accurately represented the latest will of the people.

    Insulting anyone who feels the decision is a bad one and campaigns for the least bad option they can get is hardly a democratic position. People might use similar stereotypes and ask how a bunch of octogenarians could possibly revolt?

    I suspect people aren’t being brought back together yet.

  20. @ allan christie

    I have every confidence that if their wishes are deemed contrary to the interests of our rulers and masters then provincial england will be completely ignored as it has been many times before

  21. Assiduosity

    My existing individual shares have done very well over the last few days my biggest individulal share is up over 8.5% now and still rising. I may take some profits tomorrow. You are correct though, I do like more complicated investments and I will do a full check this weekend. Since I believe my portfolio is well balanced worldwide my normal attitude applied during the two days of heavy selling………………do nothing but don’t die :-)

    So basically we are both adopting the same attitude but I am keeping my eye out for bargains.

  22. Valerie

    If Corbyn holds on till Chilcott the game changes totally – as everyone knows – hence why they’re doing it now.

  23. LASZLO

    I have been assuming that the idea is not to actually get Angela Eagle as Leader, but to pave the way for someone else (possibly after a 2 year court case to establish whether JC needs MP nominations or not)

  24. ANDREW111

    I deny you are TOH.

    :-)

  25. Hawthorn

    “Their support base would include some Labour voters from 20-odd years ago, but that has not been enough for them to break Labour in their Northern strongholds.”

    Ukip’s weakness is the non voters and ex voters turning out – the vote is there but latent.

    I agree tapping it is very difficult and even more so as they have to keep the more nationalist minded ex Con voters and ex Lab voters together at the same time.

    That’s basically what Trump is all about as well – globalists vs nation states.

  26. EDGE OF SEAT

    “That’s certainly not what Farage said when he thought he’d lost, he specifically said if it was 48 Leave -52 Remain there should be another referendum”
    _____

    Oh dear why are you quoting Farage? He is not the government. The head of the remain camp (David Cameron) said there will be no going back if we vote to dump the EU…The same was said during the Scottish indy vote….there will be no going back if the Scots bolt.

    Back to the EU…Scotland has two options, they can try and get a settlement for them within the UK and if not then hold another indy vote.

    England and Wales voted decisively to leave and there interests should be upheld where in NI and Scotland they seem to be taking their own approach and maybe full federalism might be the only option.

  27. Andrew111

    But your quite right to complain.

  28. Oldnat,
    “The Electoral Commission rules on what names are allowed to appear on ballot papers – and any already registered aren’t allowed for the “new” party[1]”

    Thanks! I presume then that the “old” party would automatically mean the membership rather than the parliamentary party?

    Do you know if the commission allows variations on a name? Would something like “Democratic Labour” be acceptable, for example?

  29. TOH

    Deny all you like!

    All this share dealing shows me you are part of the establishment so I will reject your denials out of hand!

    (not sure what I believe other than that though – surely that is enough for now!)

    :-)

  30. ANDREW111

    Fair enough :-)

  31. Edge of Seat

    “If most Labour MPs split from the party membership to form a new grouping”

    They’re not going to do that for the same reason none of them want to be the challenger – they don’t have support in the country.

    This is just people connected to the Blairites whipping up a coup before Chilcott – no doubt there are good reasons why the others have joined in but those reasons would still apply in two weeks.

    This is about Chilcott.

  32. Edge of Seat

    A (not so serious) suggestion:

    “I Can’t Believe it’s Not Labour”

  33. Edge of Seat

    How about “The Labour Democrats”?? The could probably have the “Social Democrats” since the previous attempt was the “Social Democratic Party”

    “New Labour” has a certain ring to it and I dont think any Party ever claimed that name officially :)

  34. Apparently JP morgan has just posted an advice note stating it expects Scotland to be Independent by 2019 and to issue it’s own currency..

    I am with Kevin Bridges and going for the Smakaroonie!

    https://www.veooz.com/videos/sHTrJPs.html

    Peter.

  35. ANDREW111

    LOL well the camper van lot do tambourine a lot when things don’t go their way.

    I know what the Lib\Dem plans are and they are the masters of narrow minded political opportunism. In my post I was highlighting England’s voice just as the Scots are highlighting their voice.

    I know its not all about England but Scotland are making noise (rightly or wrongly) and all I’m saying is you can’t ignore the will of the English people

  36. @ Andrew111

    Good point (about the court procedures) :-)

    I guess all the key actors know the unions’ view, also the constituency views – hence the posing on all sides (hoping that Corbyn would give in), because if not …

    It is sad seeing the last organised political formation of the (broad) Left exploding (in England).

  37. Edge of Seat

    I wouldn’t assume that any legal issue is decided “automatically” unless it is clarified in advance in a legally binding document.

    It’s an interesting question.

    Are “parties” still what they were in the 19th century –

    just vote gathering supporters for their “real” owners – the politicians who decided to band together under a particular label

    or

    the property of the members of an organisation who select from among themselves, their representatives.

    That should be clear from the party constitution (giggles).

  38. Corbyn could probably say he’ll run a new leadership election after Chilcott but he won’t stand down until then.

    That might separate the coup instigators from the followers.

  39. Mrjones,
    “They’re not going to do that for the same reason none of them want to be the challenger – they don’t have support in the country.”

    That’s why I was wondering about who controls the name.

    Considering the fuss over “Literal Democrats” vs “Liberal Democrats” from years back, there seem to be some people who vote for party alone and don’t necessarily know the name of their local candidate. One could imagine that whoever controls the name “Labour Party” would receive these people’s votes almost automatically, regardless of what organisation they actually belong to.

    It sort of gets a bit philosophical really about what a party actually means. Many people nowadays just think of it as a collection of MPs, rightly or wrongly.

  40. Personally I think the Smakaroonie story is just an attempt to divert attention from Chilcot

  41. More Comedy gold from Labour,

    Tom Watson saying Corbyn is “Putting” Labour in danger !

    Putting…putting!

    That’s like someone falling off a Tower block saying;

    “This might end badly!”

    Peter.

  42. ALAN

    The Lib/Dems may well stand on a EU ticket but we were told there will be no going back and by that time A50 will be well on the way.
    ….
    “Insulting anyone who feels the decision is a bad one and campaigns for the least bad option they can get is hardly a democratic position. People might use similar stereotypes and ask how a bunch of octogenarians could possibly revolt?”
    _____

    I’m on about the bicycle lot who surrounded BorIs Johnson’s car and held up obscene placards outside Parliament on live TV. Leave voters have already been called everything so nothing new there.

  43. Laszlo – just for information.
    The Labour Party’s procedure is that constituencies first have to have a trigger ballot of all their member to decide if there will be a contest or the sitting MP is retained. A simple majority of members decides this.

    This is actual fully paid up members not the £3 supporters.

    I would expect half a dozen LP MPs at most to even have a contest as most are diligent at keeping their cal party informed etc.
    Wallasey used to be the a S.O strong-hold and they weren’t purged as much as Millitant so perhaps Angela Eagle will be in trouble but don’t assume wholesale de-selections.

  44. KENTDALIAN
    @ allan christie
    “I have every confidence that if their wishes are deemed contrary to the interests of our rulers and masters then provincial england will be completely ignored as it has been many times before”
    ___

    I hope not because millions voted to leave (2 million more voted leave than remain in England) and that voice can’t be ignored nor can the Scots voice be ignored but they do have two options, One hope for some sort of EU deal for Scotland (unlikely) two go for indy vote 2.

  45. @ MrJones

    Which particular prominent (by which I do not mean present shadow cabinet) members of the Parliamentary Labour Party do you expect to be damaged by Chilcott?

    They’ve all left the scene. gone to the Lords, had their reputations, recanted or some combination of the above.

    Really, poor Chilcott has spent all this very long time and money on a report that will be thorough, but as a result of events, largely ignored.

    Day, perhaps two, in the news cycle and then back to Brexit, two leadership contests etc etc

  46. @ Mr Jones

    Should have read:

    “They’ve all left the scene, gone to the Lords, had their reputations shredded already, recanted or some combination of the above.”

  47. CANDY

    Thanks-absolutely incredible.

    Why have they allowed him to have so much time with this charade?

    ASSIDUOSITY

    Me too. She only appears these days if its something important.

    But is there a naivete here which they were all guilty of.

    JC has been around a very long time. They surely understood about his methods & his associates? To “lend” this guy a ballot place so the “debate” could be widened now looks like madness.

  48. If the corbynista’s are confident that they have the backing of the majority of members wouldn’t it be more prudent for there leader to step down and pass the torch to a fellow traveler such as John McDonnell or Clive Lewis?

  49. Peter Cairns,
    Difficult to see how Corbyn can come back from so many MPs telling him to go in public. Or will he deselect until the others fall into line through fear?

    Alan,
    “I Can’t Believe it’s Not Labour”

    :D Diet Labour? Labour Max?

  50. @Allan Christie

    Presumably, given your view about not reversing the EU referendum result, you have given up on Scottish independence as that would entail reversing the Independence referendum result?

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