A wrote a few weeks ago that in the past the boost enjoyed by a Prime Minister taking over mid-term has often only lasted a month or so. The latest YouGov poll suggests that Theresa May’s honeymoon is following the same pattern and has now started to fade. Topline figures are CON 38%, LAB 31%, LDEM 8%, UKIP 13%. It’s still showing a healthy Tory lead, but not the towering double-digit leads we’ve seen in the last few polls. This is, of course, just a single poll and we should wait to see if other polls shown the same trend, but it’s the first sign of the May honeymoon beginning to wane (tabs here)

UPDATE: TNS also have new voting intention figures out and they have the Tories still enjoying a double-digit lead. Topline figures are CON 39%, LAB 26%, LD 10%, UKIP 11%, GRN 7% (tabs are here). Fieldwork was over the weekend, so a little older than the Mon-Tues YouGov data, but not by much. A couple of interesting methodological notes here – looking at TNS’s tables, it looks like they are including the names of the party leaders in their voting intention question (just the GB leaders in the English question, but also the Scottish and Welsh leaders in their respective areas). Based on the tables, they are also asking preferred party on the economy and preferred leader before asking voting intention.


664 Responses to “Latest YouGov and TNS voting intentions”

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  1. ALAN
    Again it depends what you want to measure.

    Of course.

    I can see a set of questions aimed at specific issues being usefully asked every month or so – preferably whenever there is any “real” news from the Brexit coal-face.

    To take an example, the process in NI is probably even more complex than the new NI FM and PM thought, and it’s clearly going to take quite a while to establish what the options are. No polling on that subject can be very relevant until we know them, and even when we do, the answers available will be limited to those which May is prepared to countenance. At that point, polling on which outcome is preferable becomes both interesting and urgent.

    OTOH, if YouGov ask the “Right to leave / Wrong to leave / Don’t know” question every week that will give some indication of how happy or otherwise the electorate are about state of play.

    It’s likely to be a long-term game, I suspect, although perhaps not quite the polling equivalent of Jarndyce v Jarndyce.

  2. Barbazenzero

    If you wanted to do a weekly snapshot poll then I agree a general question would be the one to ask, that way you can pinpoint the moment the tide turned (and maybe lead to other polling to try and ascribe WHY the tide turned)

    Other questions would be less informative to take the time series for (although doing both would be interesting if you wanted to prove causality). You might find the moment when people realised negotiations were going belly up. That could come with a general one followed by a “why” set of questions once change had been noted, or asking it after each of the many “big events” to come. Getting a baseline of peoples opinions now makes sense so that we can measure the changes as they happen.

  3. HARRY
    Still very concerning for Labour – the Tories are pretty much at mid term and have been through a bruising pre referendum spat.

    Never having voted for them, that’s not my problem. However, if they can reach the UK 2020 GE in one piece they have a real opportunity to lead a progressive alliance provided they embrace PR.

    The Cons are in a situation where nobody should expect instant results, and probably will be fairly static until the autumn. If they can come up with a “popular” Brexit solution early next year they’ll be home free.

    More likely, May will have to discard [and replace] one of the Chevening Three every few months until someone comes up with a working scheme which can be sold to the electorate of the four nations [or England if May was fibbing in her remarks about the union]. That’s when the UKIP polls will start to frighten her.

  4. ALAN

    I think we’re in agreement, there.

  5. Tancred

    “The EU is not a top priority for most people”

    Really, is that so? Today’s YouGov poll shows that the most important issue facing the UK at the moment is Britain leaving the EU 56%, followed by Immigration 48%.

    Alec

    Re your post to me, thank you, it was interesting. As you well know my main reason for voting leave is the question of sovereignty although I would also like a points based controlled immigration system. However I think you and others have missed the point i was trying to make (my fault for not being clearer). T May has made it abundantly clear that she believes immigration was a major reason for the “leave” vote and she has promised to deal with immigration, even to the extent of the 10s of thousands claim being repeated (foolish IMO). It’s for this reason that I do not see a “soft Brexit” unless the EU backs down on borders.

    Remember that May’s priority will be winning the 2020 GE and that the Tories are a very pragmatic party.

    Of course I may be wrong and she may do a “U” turn but it would cost her the election and I don’t see it happening.

  6. ROBERT NEWARK

    Many thanks Robert, as always you can see where I’m coming from. I agree with your point about spurious legal challenges. These trouble makers are a pain in the a**e but I think they will fail.

  7. ROBERT NEWARK @ TOH
    Border control must be an absolute red line. If the eu will not understand the problems of the U.K. and overcrowding, then we leave and trade in the way we did for hundreds of years pre Common Market.

    Are you suggesting May will renege on the Belfast Agreement? If not, how will she persuade the six counties to vote themselves out of it?

  8. Barbazenzero @ ROBERT NEWARK

    “Are you suggesting May will renege on the Belfast Agreement?”

    But surely if we “trade in the way we did for hundreds of years” then Dublin will be back in the UK, so there will no longer be an Irish problem?

    Meanwhile, our enormous navy will ensure we sell opium to the Chinese – to boost the profits of the East India Company, which will have reconquered the sub-continent to boost profits in London?

    One has to think outwith the box in the post-Brexit world. :-)

  9. BARBAZENZERO

    It’s not for me to provide a solution to that question, but I am saying May will do what it takes to achieve control on immigration.

  10. BBZ
    Are YOU suggesting that the government should defy the will of the people in a high turnout referendum, because of the interests of a small faction of the Kingdom? That would be the tail wagging the dog. You raise issues as a reason not to do something without any appreciation of what can be achieved through negotiation and discussion.

    Tancred

    Your first assumption is that if the uk leaves the eu, then there will be war between the countries of Europe. What is your basis for that? Western Europe has moved on a little bit in the civilisation stakes, from 200 years ago. Unlike some areas of the world, whose people we now seem obliged to harbour because of the demands of Mrs. M and the eu.

    I think it is far more likely that within a decade, a new free trade grouping will emerge around the UK with like minded countries from all over the world but without the political dream nonsense of the eu.

  11. Old Nat

    Very droll :)

  12. Old Nat
    Very droll :)

    But also extremely accurate

  13. ROBERT NEWARK @ Old Nat
    Very droll :)

    At least we agree on something.

  14. has anyone felt any impact from Ed M. endorsing Owen yet? Must admit there’s been nothing discernable at my end. Still, it’s early days…

  15. One has to think outwith the box in the post-Brexit world. :-)

    Exactly, and I would expect to see a return of all of the following:

    – The national anthem being played at the end of all cinema screenings
    – Latin being restored to all school curricula
    – BBC newsreaders to wear ties and sit behind desks
    – All goods to be sold in imperial, not metric, measurements
    – Police constables allowed to give yobs a clip round the ear
    – The ridiculous smoking ban to be repealed

  16. P”it’s not for me to provide a solution to that question, but I am saying May will do what it takes to achieve control on immigration.”

    ————-

    it is wonderful, how on leaving the EU, none of the potential issues with it seems to matter, whether it’s borders, or banking or anything else. They just say “magic happens” and our great leaders will fix the none-too-easily-fixable.

    It’s like trying to talk oil prices with Indy peeps. There’s something v. compelling about separatism. You just leave and it magically fixes everything!! It’s very easy to blame much on a union, as indeed peeps do with immigration…

  17. David Carrod

    “BBC newsreaders to wear ties and sit behind desks”

    You sound like a dangerous moderniser to me!

    While we won’t see them (this TV nonsense having been ended as a dangerous, and failed, experiment), the radio announcers will be properly garbed in evening dress, as Lord Reith originally insisted.

  18. As long as we get rid of these infernal German inventions, the horseless carriages, and stop the nonsense of votes for ladies and non-ratepayers, then we may see some progress.

  19. Oldnat

    I’m sure you misspoke and intended to say wireless there…

  20. Alan

    True – I’m so ashamed! :-)

  21. CAMBRIDGERACHEL

    “But also extremely accurate”

    Really, OLDNAT was being amusing but I don’t think his comment was serious.

    ROBERT NEWARK

    “I think it is far more likely that within a decade, a new free trade grouping will emerge around the UK with like minded countries from all over the world but without the political dream nonsense of the eu.”

    Sensible post. At the same time i think the EU will continue to decline in importance.

  22. BILL PATRICK
    Allan Christie,
    “One worry for SLAB is that presumably some of their membership became involved in SLAB because that was the way to “get on” in politics in Scotland. If they start losing their basis in local government, then joining SLAB becomes an even less promising career route in politics”
    ______

    Absolutely so come next year we may see the SLAB gravy Conveyor Belt for mini party minions slithering along to SLAB utopia buckle and stop.

    It’s not looking good for SLAB but they’ve had their own way in Scotland for the best part of 100 years and its about time the likes of Glasgow brought something new into local government rather than voting in the same old left mafia style pro brutalist architecture type.

  23. @TOH
    Sometimes I wonder what you grow on that allotment. I could do with smoking some to fuel my own dreams if you have any spare :)

  24. GUYMONDE

    If you can’t see whats happening in the EU already then I suspect your already on something.

    I certainly don’t recommend smoking any of the things I grow but they are very good to eat.

    :-)

  25. ROBERT NEWARK
    Are YOU suggesting that the government should defy the will of the people in a high turnout referendum, because of the interests of a small faction of the Kingdom?

    No. I’m suggesting that the UK should respect the rule of law, particularly with respect to international treaties, if it is to have any respect from other states in the jungle it will find itself outwith the EU.

    The blame doesn’t lie with May but her predecessor, who foolishly gave no consideration to that particular treaty or any advice offered him regarding the unity of the four nations which make up the UK.

    It’s not as though the UK government had no knowledge of this. The Westminster Parliament’s NI Affairs Select Committee published The border in the event of a Brexit, which gives a reasonable account of the issues, in May 2016 [full PDF version].

    That document includes:
    Outside the EU, the UK would be free to negotiate a special status for Irish citizens: Professor Dagmar Schiek, Jean Monnet Chair of EU Law and Policy at Queens University Belfast, told us that there is some latitude within the EU’s rules to allow some bilateral agreement between the Republic of Ireland and the UK over the border. However, she emphasised that it would require the remaining EU members to agree to this: “Under EU law, any future relation between the Republic of Ireland and the UK would be subject to agreement not only with the Republic of Ireland, but with the whole of the EU”

    The most immediate impact of imposing a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland would be felt by those who regularly cross between the two for work, leisure or study. Data on the numbers of people who live on one side of the border but work on the other is limited. A 2001 study estimated that there were 18,000 daily cross-border commuters (9,000 travelling in each direction).92 John McGrane told us the figure could be as high as 30,000.
    [1]

    The peace process has ultimately been successful because of the commitment of successive UK and Irish governments and the willingness of politicians and the communities they represent to put aside past differences sufficiently to allow Northern Ireland to be governed peacefully. It is clear that the relationships that both the Northern Ireland Executive and the UK Government have with the Irish Government continue to be very strong, and we expect that would continue to be the case regardless of the outcome of the referendum.

    If crime is increasingly cross-border in nature, policing must also be cross-border and the British Government must ensure that the PSNI has the maximum possible access to international collaborative mechanisms. This should include, though not be limited to, the existing EU mechanisms. In the event of a vote to leave the EU, access to these, or equivalent measures, should be included in any deal between the EU and UK.

    Obviously we cannot know who read it in government, but it was the then PM’s duty to ensure that any necessary amendments to the referendum were made. The three devolved nations did ask him to leave a greater gap between the national GEs and the referendum but were ignored. This paper would have provided a near-perfect opportunity to have postponed and refined it.

    May has been handed a poisoned chalice, but will have to live with it, which may well take some time.

    [1] Of itself, this would be enough to trigger a referendum in NI to accept or reject the change of status to NI residents.

  26. Sorry, 1 missing tag made my previous post hard to read…..

    ROBERT NEWARK
    Are YOU suggesting that the government should defy the will of the people in a high turnout referendum, because of the interests of a small faction of the Kingdom?

    No. I’m suggesting that the UK should respect the rule of law, particularly with respect to international treaties, if it is to have any respect from other states in the jungle it will find itself outwith the EU.

    The blame doesn’t lie with May but her predecessor, who foolishly gave no consideration to that particular treaty or any advice offered him regarding the unity of the four nations which make up the UK.

    It’s not as though the UK government had no knowledge of this. The Westminster Parliament’s NI Affairs Select Committee published The border in the event of a Brexit, which gives a reasonable account of the issues, in May 2016 [full PDF version].

    That document includes:
    Outside the EU, the UK would be free to negotiate a special status for Irish citizens: Professor Dagmar Schiek, Jean Monnet Chair of EU Law and Policy at Queens University Belfast, told us that there is some latitude within the EU’s rules to allow some bilateral agreement between the Republic of Ireland and the UK over the border. However, she emphasised that it would require the remaining EU members to agree to this: “Under EU law, any future relation between the Republic of Ireland and the UK would be subject to agreement not only with the Republic of Ireland, but with the whole of the EU”

    The most immediate impact of imposing a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland would be felt by those who regularly cross between the two for work, leisure or study. Data on the numbers of people who live on one side of the border but work on the other is limited. A 2001 study estimated that there were 18,000 daily cross-border commuters (9,000 travelling in each direction).92 John McGrane told us the figure could be as high as 30,000.
    [1]

    The peace process has ultimately been successful because of the commitment of successive UK and Irish governments and the willingness of politicians and the communities they represent to put aside past differences sufficiently to allow Northern Ireland to be governed peacefully. It is clear that the relationships that both the Northern Ireland Executive and the UK Government have with the Irish Government continue to be very strong, and we expect that would continue to be the case regardless of the outcome of the referendum.

    If crime is increasingly cross-border in nature, policing must also be cross-border and the British Government must ensure that the PSNI has the maximum possible access to international collaborative mechanisms. This should include, though not be limited to, the existing EU mechanisms. In the event of a vote to leave the EU, access to these, or equivalent measures, should be included in any deal between the EU and UK.

    Obviously we cannot know who read it in government, but it was the then PM’s duty to ensure that any necessary amendments to the referendum were made.

    May has been handed a poisoned chalice over this, but will have to live with it.

    [1] Of itself, this would be enough to trigger a referendum in NI to accept or reject the change of status to NI residents.

  27. “Sometimes I wonder what you grow on that allotment.”

    ————-

    It’s not really an allotment, it’s a farm….

  28. TOH

    I wasn’t just joking either!

    Comments like “as we did for hundreds of years” betray a total lack of understanding of how the UK operated in the international trading community before the Common Market.

    In general terms …..

    In the 18th and 19th centuries, Britain/UK used military power to exploit the resources of its growing empire.

    Up to the early/mid-19th century, that economic and military power supported a protectionist economic policy, though its industrial strength then made Free Trade much more attractive to entrepreneurs – until the more efficient German and US economies made Free Trade much less desirable.

    In the 30s, Imperial Preference [1] was tried as a protection against the UK’s rivals, but had to abandoned in 1947 when the GATT agreement came into force, and the Dominions increasingly ended preferential treatment of the UK.

    So which mode of trading with the rest of the world do these advocates of a “return to the past” mean? – and how do they imagine it can be created?

    [1] “home producers first, empire producers second, and foreign producers last”.

  29. OLDNAT

    Clearly we should go back to the model of unilateral trade deals. Anything else is a loss of sovereignty.

  30. http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/009468b0-3b89-11e6-8716-a4a71e8140b0.html#axzz4H2lh0p9d

    Very interesting comment on the Italian referendum coming up in the Autumn. If you think the polling for Brexit was ‘interesting’ then you should look at this!

    The referendum is about constitutional reform, but the effects are going to be very far reaching – possibly even more so than Brexit, and could lead to an Italian exit from the EU & the Euro.

    If they do stay then the Italian banks are going to need bailing out with some jaw dropping sums of money.

    The polls are about as close as they were here, with plenty (up to 42%) of don’t knows. It’s being described as a potential error of judgement as great as Camerons, if not more so.

    There’s even a lengthy Wikipedia page on it:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Italian_constitutional_referendum,_2016

    It all begs the question though, why it is not being given a much higher profile in the UK media as either outcome is going to affect the UK directly.

  31. Thoughtful

    My initial thought was “Who wrote that question?” It reads like something from a Bullwer-Lytton contest!

    My second thought was “Who approved it?”

    If being able to explain that question in plain English (or Italian of course) was a prerequisite to voting I suspect there would be an incredibly low turnout.

  32. Need to do away with these infernal ‘weighted polls’.

    If I need to know what’s good for the country, I just have a word with the chaps at the golf club.

  33. @Alan

    In answer to your question, the Italian parliament passed the bill, but not by the required 66% making the only way it could be passed, by way of a referendum.

    Today’s legal move saw the Court of Cassation validate the more than 500,000 signatures needed for the referendum to be held.

    So, in answer to your question, there were over half a million people who approved it – rather unbelievably!

    I think we should bear in mind that Italy is a far away country of which the politics is considerably different to our own !

    The scale of the importance of this is perhaps illustrated in the two paragraphs from the FT:

    “An Italian exit from the single currency would trigger the total collapse of the eurozone within a very short period.
    It would probably lead to the most violent economic shock in history, dwarfing the Lehman Brothers bankruptcy in 2008 and the 1929 Wall Street crash. But my sense is that those who would advocate an Italian departure might even relish bringing down the whole house.”

  34. @TOH – “Alec

    Re your post to me, thank you, it was interesting.”

    Polite as ever – ‘respect’ – as they say.

    I understand your point. I do, however, wonder if May feels that her view of the national interest is more important than her parties short term electoral chances – the inverse of her predecessor.

  35. Alan

    “unilateral trade deals”

    In my young day, it was said that trading all by yourself made you blind.

  36. Carfrew,

    I thought I felt something, but it turned out I was on the Highland Line and it was a mini-earthquake.

  37. At the start of the previous thread I commented that I thought the previous YouGov looked odd because the headline figures didn’t seem to tie in with the direction of the underlying ones. What is interesting about this latest poll is that the internals (for example where 2015 voters are now) don’t seem that much different from the equivalent figures in that previous poll – not enough to explain the big drop in the Con lead.

    So it may be that the previous poll was distorted a bit by some quirk of the processing and in reality the fall isn’t as dramatic. Whether it represents the end of May’s ‘honeymoon’ period is another matter – at less than a month it would be shorter than any of the ones that Anthony discussed in a previous post. So there may be more falls to come or there may never have been a ‘honeymoon’ in the first place, due to the very strange circumstances of the time and so no more drop can be expected and this apparent one was just noise.

    Alec says that Labour’s VI in this poll is worse than it was in the Spring, which is true if you only look at the three where Labour was ahead in march and April. But 31% is still as good as they have managed otherwise since last May:

    https://d25d2506sfb94s.cloudfront.net/cumulus_uploads/document/bqsts0kxdi/YG-Trackers-Voting%20Intention-160727.pdf
    (which needs updating)

    Given the behaviour of the PLP and their mates in the last couple of months the surprise is there’s not been even more erosion of Labour’s VI. It probably says something about how most people view politics and the media’s coverage of it. Certainly the percentage of those saying they won’t vote seems high, though that may be influenced by changes on methodology.

    The big alteration since April has been the drop in the UKIP VI which has gone partly to the Conservatives, though many are still currently uncertain. UKIP polling since the Referendum hasn’t been as low as since May 2015. Whether this will reverse if the government fails to deliver a Brexit deal to the liking of those ex-UKIP movers is a good question. There’s a real danger that something similar in polling will happen as we saw with those who said they would switch to support a Cameron deal with the EU. When they saw the reality they voted against.

  38. Good evening all from a fine evening here in Itchen Valley Hampshire.

    Allotments!!……….who mentioned them?

    What do you call a mushroom who buys everyone drinks and is the life of the party?

    A fun-gi :-)

  39. ALEC

    “I understand your point. I do, however, wonder if May feels that her view of the national interest is more important than her parties short term electoral chances – the inverse of her predecessor.”

    Obviously I’m hoping that she will respect the will of the people and leave the EU in the way that she has interpreted the people wish.

    OLDNAT

    I do know my English history thank you. However seeing your rather purile comment to Dave I still think your joking about what to those who wish Brexit believe, and I really don’t think you understand how we feel about the EU and how strong our desire is to leave. By the way, I wasn’t suggesting a return to the past and as far as i can remember never have done.

    I’m afraid I cannot take you seriously when your in this mood.

  40. Thoughtful

    Power to the Italian people, I would happy to see them leave the Euro and I would happy to see the Eurozone crash as well, as it would mean the end of the EU earlier than even I expected.

  41. DAVID CARROD
    One has to think outwith the box in the post-Brexit world. :-)
    ………
    “Exactly, and I would expect to see a return of all of the following:
    – The national anthem being played at the end of all cinema screenings”
    – Latin being restored to all school curricula
    – BBC newsreaders to wear ties and sit behind desks
    – All goods to be sold in imperial, not metric, measurements
    – Police constables allowed to give yobs a clip round the ear
    – The ridiculous smoking ban to be repealed
    _________

    Crikey!! I know we shared the same platform on Brexit but if you think I’m hanging about a fecking cinema after the film to listen to God Save the Queen then you must be potty. I would sooner listen to the sloshing around of urine in peeps catheters at a Sydney Devine concert than be made to sit through God Save the Queen.

    However all is not lost, I do like the idea of the police being able to clip yobs round the ear or even a boot up the arse.

  42. TOH

    As far as I am aware, you have never advocated a simplistic return to an imagined past (or at least one that only partially operated between 1932 and 1939).

    My remarks were directed against those who do say such silly things.

    On any aspect of politics, there are those who will make a rational case for their position, and those who make foolish statements based on a misunderstanding (or, sometimes total ignorance) of what actually happened in previous times.

    I can understand why you might think that I was directing my remarks at you, since my fuller explanation was contained in my response to your comment that I was just being humorous.

    However, that was not my intent, so apologies if that was misinterpreted.

    I equally ridicule those on my own side of political arguments who post historical rubbish!

  43. Latest news from the UKIP stronghold that is Clacton….

    Clacton CLP voted Corbyn 48 Smith 21 in our nomination meeting tonight.

  44. Labour hustings now finished.

    It will be interesting to read @Laszlo’s ‘Boo Count’.

    Independent observers counted many boos, with one saying this is a new phenomenon, not experienced at last years Labour hustings. Not experienced at leadership hustings for the Tories, Lib Dems, or SNP, as far as I can recall.

    I believe only a fool would think this has nothing to do with the nature of significant elements of Corbyn’s support, and interestingly (unless I missed it) I don’t think Corbyn has strongly intervened to issue a cease and desist notice.

  45. Allan Christie

    “be made to sit through God Save the Queen.”

    The convention is that you stand for it – not sit!

    It was still played at the end of cinema performances in the early 60s, but was abandoned as the entire audience normally rose to their feet at the first bars, and walked out ASAP. :-)

  46. OLDNAT

    “The convention is that you stand for it – not sit!”
    ______

    I stand corrected…(no pun intended) ;-)

    I’m not surprised it was abandoned and people walked out ASAP..It has to be the most morbid depressing anthem around. I remember when Scotland were playing Liechtenstein I almost lost it when I heard their national anthem….What a shocker!!

  47. @ Alec

    Is it ok if I ignore your request?

  48. The new Labour Party membership joined between the last GE and April 2016

    Average age 51
    Vast majority are ABC1
    10% Momentum
    Values: pretty left (centrist really from my point of view :-))
    Strong green tendencies
    Not particularly loyal to LP, but very loyal to their own values

  49. After Alec’s calling, I can’t resist.

    Husting – in my opinion

    Pretty straightforward really. Smith lost it completely, but the hustings are not particularly important.

    I don’t want to comment on Smith’s numerous gaffs (the best was when he said that Corbyn didn’t have policies (which is true), but when Corbyn started to wheel them out, he said that those policies (with which agreed earlier) don’t win elections).

    There is something, however. Corbyn was very relaxed throughout (actually I don’t remember him being so relaxed in such or similar situations), but seemed of becoming tired in the last quarter or fifth and made some fairly big errors. One can attribute it to many things, but they were there.

  50. The Other Howard

    Thanks for getting back to me on my post.

    I think that there are a lot of important constituencies – the Automotive Industry, Scotland, Aerospace, the City, Northern Ireland, young people, and London, all of which/whom would prefer soft Brexit.

    The IFS – who take it from me are highly respected and very much regard rigor and impartiality as items of faith – also point to soft Brexit as the least damaging economically.

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