Ipsos MORI have published their monthly political monitor and it shows another towering lead for the Conservatives. Topline voting intentions are CON 47%(+7), LAB 29%(-5), LDEM 7%(+1), UKIP 6%(-3). The eighteen point Conservative lead is the highest they’ve managed in any poll since 2009, and the highest lead for a party in government since 2002. Usual caveats apply about any poll showing such a large shift in support over a month, but in terms of direction this does echo the ICM and YouGov polls earlier this month that also showed shifts towards the Conservatives. Full details are here.

A quick word about that UKIP score of just 6%. While it is obviously very bad, it’s not the sudden collapse one might assume. For whatever methodological reason, MORI do tend to show significantly worse scores for UKIP than polls from other companies. It is NOT a case of UKIP support being at 11% with ICM and YouGov last week, their MEPs getting into a fist fight and their support collapsing (however tempting such a narrative is!). MORI has been showing them at significantly lower levels of support for several months anyway – 9% last month, 6% in August, 8% in July. Nevertheless, it does appear as if the Tories are beginning to claw back support they’d previously lost to UKIP.

693 Responses to “Ipsos MORI/Standard – CON 47, LAB 29, LD 7, UKIP 6”

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  1. The apparent preparations between the UUP and SDLP before a formal electoral pact looks like a dramatic change in the political landscape of Northern Ireland. “Unionist” no longer means “Conservative”, and this seems like a pro-Europe coalition.

  2. @ToH

    For the ECJ to no longer have any jurisdiction over UK activities, we would essentially have to cease all trade and economic activities in Europe. Good luck with that.

  3. “The point about education for an individual is that it is more likely to give you options”
    @Maura October 22nd, 2016 at 2:49 pm

    Indeed. I have a music degree. Thanks to Margaret Thatcher I also had two years on the dole, and several years having part of my (part-time) earnings taken off my benefits, so after travel and other expenses I was worse off. I cheered at her death.

    But I have worked hard, studied modern technology, and now earn more than £40k and get to travel across Europe. So it is possible to do well, and everyone has a responsibility to better themselves, and keep learning as times keep changing. The days of jobs for life are gone.


    Many thanks for the link to Head’s The Death of British Business, which I missed yesterday. Well worth a read, and very much line line with my own recollections from the Thatcher years to date.

  5. TOH

    I understand you have no need for the economy to improve so you can cheer and how the economy does is largely irrelevant to you. No matter how bad it gets, you will be cheering because you got your wish.

    I have a different perspective. If I remained here, and the economy was hit for 20 years before showing signs of success it’d likely do me little good. The victory would be at the expense of my own standard of living for so long it would affect me for the rest of my life and so the victory would have come at great personal cost to me. From my perspective it would be a pyrrhic victory. Not worth the cost.

    It’s all a question of perspective. It’s not surprising that for those whose standard of living will be largely unaffected by the economy will have a different perspective to those it will.

    If things turn bad, it’ll cost you little and me a huge amount. While the freedom of movement still exists I intend to make the most of it before it makes things a little more awkward to travel.

  6. @Alan

    This idea that a few percent either way on post-Brexit GDP is going to make a big difference to you is not realistic IMO. People are successful based on the life choices they make and the motivation and determination to see those choices through.

    In any case 20 years is actually a small period of time in the life of a nation as long and as vibrant that this Island has helped provide us. A lot of the doom and gloom on this board and comments by some about how the EU raised us out of poverty are frankly not based in reality. The UK has been one of the wealthiest countries in the world for the past 3 centuries. And it will continue to be so while the populace innovates and trades, strives to better themselves and their communities and remembers to celebrate their unique and successful culture.

  7. Sea Change

    The drop in the pound wasn’t a few %. If it’s such a minor thing then we’ll see employers raise wages so that they are comparable with elsewhere in the world within a year and there won’t be an issue. I think the lower value of the pound is going to set in for a long time and there won’t be massive wage hikes to counter this.

    I agree life choices can help a lot and my life choice of leaving this country appears to be one which will benefit me. I’ll take your advice and be sure to be motivated and determined to see it though.

    I agree, 20 years is indeed a short time compared to the life of a nation, unfortunately it’s not short in terms of the life of me, which is the important thing. I have no influence or control over the state of the country 300 years from now so I’m not going to worry about that. I’ll worry about the things I can affect, which for me, the quality of the rest of my life is high up.

  8. Sea Change: “The UK has been one of the wealthiest countries in the world for the past 3 centuries.”

    In 300 years, we have gone from wealthiest country in the world to 35th currently (in gdp per capita).

    That precipitous decline leaves no room for complacency. If you read the Simon Head article first referenced by Charles yesterday, you will see why some people believe that what is at stake is not just a few percent on GDP, but trying to stop our accelerating slide down the slippery slope into also-ran status.

  9. ALAN

    I have long thought that people who LEAVE (from any country) are likely to be some of the most enterprising of their nations. It has to be easier just to stay put and accept whatever ups and downs come your way rather than set out on a new life, often without family and friends for help and support, and try to improve your circumstances. I fully accept that I may be biased but I think ‘economic’ immigrants/emigrants evidence a lot of hope and determination.

  10. barbzenzero,
    If the UK negotiates a deal with the council which needs to be agreed with the european parliament, might we find ourselves in the position that the UK UKIP members are voting against it?

  11. DANNY
    If the UK negotiates a deal with the council which needs to be agreed with the european parliament, might we find ourselves in the position that the UK UKIP members are voting against it?

    Strange but true. I can’t help but wonder how many of the UKIP MEPs will find employment of any kind if or when we leave the EU. They may have a pecuniary interest in wrecking their own referendum! I doubt they’ll be in the majority, though.

    In any event, May’s March A50 trigger may well not be feasible unless the High Court get a quick ruling from the ECJ that A50 is reversible. Unless she does, the 2019 EP elections may have to be held in the UK.

    BTW, please use BZ if you don’t have easy access to copy/paste.


    Your post to Alan was absolutely bang on. He plans to leave. I have wished him the best of luck several times, he should do what he thinks is best for him and any dependants he has.

    Somerjohn suggests you read the article posted by Charles. Please do, once you have read I am sure you will agree it’s not very impressive and draws faulty conclusions. It’s being pushed because ti supports a Remainers view of things, nothing more.


    Don’t be childish you know exactly what I mean.

  14. @BZ

    Yes, we probably could agree on that, but Wallonia is not, of course, a state.

    Thanks for you 2.57 heads up on Charles’s reference to the NY Review of Books article, which is both essential reading and a frightening statement of where we seem to be headed. It is worth restating the last passage recounting the abandonment of the position and authority of the City and its consequences in a flight of international corporation and capital from the UK:

    longtime observer of the City, the financial journalist Andreas Whittam Smith:
    We have given the keys of the City of London to its global competitors. They could, if they chose, on grounds of national rivalry rather than pure commercial calculation, set about dismantling it. The threat is there, even if distant and, in many people’s opinions, improbable. It could be the stuff of nightmares.
    With Brexit the nightmare is no longer distant and improbable. Even before the June vote, EU governments, backed by the European Commission in Brussels, were trying to change the rules of the EU single market in financial services in ways that would force banks dealing in Euro-denominated bonds and securities to do their business in financial centers where the euro was the local currency, thus excluding London. In practice this would have meant that British banks and foreign banks with their European headquarters in London would lose much of their “passporting” rights, granted by the EU to do business within the EU.
    As a member of the EU, Britain was able to prevent this, but outside the EU it will be highly vulnerable to further regulatory assaults from Brussels. According to data just released by the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority, nearly 5,500 UK- registered companies, the great majority in financial services, depended on these passporting rights to do business in the EU and stand to lose them with Brexit.
    The issue for Britain now is whether Prime Minister Theresa May has the fortitude to face down the Brexit radicals within her own party and save Britain from the economic havoc that ‘hard Brexit’ and the exclusion from the European single market will surely bring. But in her keynote speech to the Conservative Party conference in Birmingham on October 5, she gave few indications that she will. Instead, she played unashamedly to the Brexit gallery, affirming that Britain would trigger Article 50—the provision of the EU treaty setting out the process for formally withdrawing from the union—by the end of March 2017. May also made the reduction of immigration from the EU her chief priority, and aligned herself so closely with the anti-immigrant wing of her party that she drew praise from Marine Le Pen, the leader of France’s far-right National Front.
    Unless May soon changes course, Britain and its economy could face a decade or more of debilitating uncertainty. This is the amount of time it could take to negotiate a new trading relationship with the EU, which absorbs approximately 44 percent of UK exports and is by far its largest market. The British government knows that in a little more than two years Britain will lose its access to the European single market, the price it must pay for its hostility to immigration from the EU. But it has no way of knowing what trading regime with the EU will take its place.
    It must now embark on a series of marathon negotiations with its EU ex-partners, certain only in the knowledge that the trading regime that will emerge from them may be far less favorable to business located in Britain than the one that exists now. It is hard to imagine a set of circumstances more likely to convince foreign businesses in Britain that they should act on their warnings to leave the country or reduce their presence there, and instead take up residence within the secure confines of the Single European Market. The British economy and the British people will suffer the consequences.

  16. as a new poster can i say that i am struck by the high number of posters who seem to revel in talking the country down.

    it seems many would prefer to stand amidst the wreckage shouting that they were right rather than turning their minds to how we can turn this to our nations advantage

    we have surely faced darker days and triumphed.

  17. @somerjohn

    Thanks for drawing attention to the article linked to by Charles. It is an impressively forensic dissection of the nature of the UK economy especially its woeful export performance, its consequent dependence on capital inflows, and the role of global corporations in key sectors especially manufacturing and financial services. Taken all together it highlights starkly the acute risks to the UK economy of a hard Brexit and the frailty of the UK ‘s negotiating position. I doubt whether our Brexiters will have any substantive response to it other than it will be OK in 5,10,20 years (select .timescale according to taste) and in any case we are in control of our own disaster.

  18. Millie
    “Yes, we probably could agree on that, but Wallonia is not, of course, a state.”

    Indeed. It is not even got the population of Yorkshire. How come a regional council can throw a spanner in the works of the EU?

    No matter. I would imagine the uk could agree a deal with Canada, in about 6 months, given that they would probably propose the failed eu deal as the basis and all we would have to do would be to tweak it here and there.

  19. @s thomas

    You seem to have missed the basic fact that effort is going in to avoiding the worst of the difficulties which Brexit presents. Being objective and honest is not talking the country down. Glib references to past glories and ones to come are the great risk. As a great conservative thinker said there is a great virtue in daring to be fearful when all around are filled with presumptuous self-confidence.

  20. Guardian article on their Opinium Poll:-

    “Theresa May is trusted by more than twice as many voters as Jeremy Corbyn to run the economy well and handle Brexit negotiations effectively,
    The findings also show May is regarded as strong, decisive, and able to get things done and stand up for Britain’s interests abroad by more than double the number of voters who attribute these qualities to the Labour leader.
    Some 46% of voters now think more positively about her than they did when she became prime minister while only 15% think more negatively, with 51% judging her first 100 days to have been an overall success. This compares with only 29% who said the same of Corbyn 100 days after he was elected Labour leader for the first time in September last year.”

  21. MILLIE
    Yes, we probably could agree on that, but Wallonia is not, of course, a state.

    You’re getting into an angels on the head of a pin scenario there.

    Belgium is a democratic federal nation in which the states have significant power, unlike the three devolved UK nations, more’s the pity.

    The actual “veto” will have been by the EU member state of Belgium, acting in accordance with its own constitution.


    @” I would imagine the uk could agree a deal with Canada, in about 6 months, ”

    Well we now know that if we stay in the EU we probably can’t negotiate a trade deal with any country of significance.

    Outside the EU…………we don’t have to worry what the Walloon Parliament thinks. So that will be progress.

  23. I think it’s fair to say May has been given a very easy ride by the media in her first 100 days compared to Corbyn!

  24. @Robert Newark

    It depends. Given the strong feelings which so many Brexiters expressed over the TTIP deal and saw it as a reason to leave why would CETA which is very similar in nature be any more acceptable to them?


    Quite so and well said.

  26. That Opinium survey is interesting re UKIP – Opinium are the most ‘pro-UKIP’ pollster out there, returning 15% in July and 17% in late June.

    That 13% is equivalent to 10-11% from any other pollster, confirming their recent slide.

    No benefit to the Lib Dems though – Opinium are always at the low end for Lib Dems, but that 6% is equivalent to 8% generally, so no signs of a post-Witney breakthrough.

    Sorry, I thought it might be interesting to talk about polling for a change… ;-)

  27. Not such a bleak poll for Labour though it still sees the Tory lead up from 6% in late July.

  28. ROBERT NEWARK @ Millie
    I would imagine the uk could agree a deal with Canada, in about 6 months, given that they would probably propose the failed eu deal as the basis and all we would have to do would be to tweak it here and there.

    Except for the fact that Canada could [and should, for the benefit of its own citizens] make the deal somewhat worse on the beggars can’t be choosers principle. However, it would only become possible to implement that deal once the UK had left the EU – mid 2019 at the earliest. Once past that hurdle, if we can “fast track” the conversion of the UK’s WTO from EU to stand-alone, then we might be able to implement the deal around the beginning of 2022.

  29. @bigfatron

    Interesting that LDs and the SNP are both on 6%!

  30. @ S Thomas

    “we have surely faced darker days and triumphed”

    I’ll certainly accept that Brexit isn’t as bad as WW2 or the Black Death but not that the negative effects of it can be somehow avoided merely by positive thinking.

    As with any political decision taken in a democracy, those who promoted it should be held accountable for the consequences.

  31. No tables yet from BMG Scottish poll, but Scotland Votes say

    Holyrood seat prediction (BMG Poll Sep 28-Oct 4)

    SNP 70 (+7)
    GREEN 10 (+4)

    CON 25 (-6)
    LAB 19 (-5)

    LIB 5 (=)
    UKIP 0 (=)

    An 11 seat gain for the pro-indy parties would be a significant shift in opinion over the last 18 months.

  32. @Sea Change

    “People are successful based on the life choices they make and the motivation and determination to see those choices through.”

    Are you familiar with the Just-World fallacy?

  33. James E

    …or the implication that people aren’t trying now and faced with the economic effects of Brexit, everyone is obligated to find that extra gear to offset the effects of reduced trade with a major trading partner will have.

    Most people are along for the ride and if production in the Sunderland plant moves to France, working a bit harder isn’t going to reverse that decision. If production moves, writing letters to Mr. Ghosn explaining that you are willing to work harder and make a success of Brexit isn’t going to cut the mustard. The best you could hope for is to learn French and hope the company offers to relocate you and your family.

    For most people, that extra gear simply doesn’t exist and there aren’t going to be hundreds of people creating billion dollar companies thanks to Brexit.

  34. S THOMAS

    Good for you, yes it is very sad that so many seem to want to talk Britain down instead of trying to make a success of Brexit.

    I am increasingly impressed with May. I thought her first foray into a EU meeting went very well for her. She strikes me as a tough lady who will get things done. Power to her elbow. I am not surprised at the poll findings. It fits with my view of why the Tories are doing so well even though there is some worry amongst voters about the economic effects of Brexit.

  35. ALAN

    “…………………No matter how bad it gets, you will be cheering because you got your wish.”

    You are not accurately reflecting my position. I actually think the UK economy will perform better outside the EU in the long term. As you know I do expect some economic problems in the short term. I would be grateful if you would not represent my opinions.

  36. Alan

    that should have read …………….misrepresent my opinions.

  37. TOH

    You seem pretty ambivalent to any short term hit.

    I wasn’t saying you would cheer the hit to peoples standard of life but you would, no matter how bad it got, cheer the fact that we left and consider any hit a price worth paying. In the belief that within 20 years things would improve. I can’t foresee you saying “Well, I was wrong, it was a disaster” no matter how bad the economic effects hit people. To do so would be pessimistic.

    Apologies if I was unclear.

  38. “Good for you, yes it is very sad that so many seem to want to talk Britain down instead of trying to make a success of Brexit.”


    “Britain’s biggest banks are preparing to relocate out of the UK in the first few months of 2017 amid growing fears over the impending Brexit negotiations, while smaller banks are making plans to get out before Christmas.

    “The dramatic claim is made in the Observer by the chief executive of the British Bankers’ Association, Anthony Browne, who warns “the public and political debate at the moment is taking us in the wrong direction”.

    Indeed. Those awful British bankers, determined to do Britain down. Shame on them.

    Isn’t Theresa May wonderful?

  39. Alec

    Yes, the “talking Britain down” meme is an odd one. it reminds me of the widespread wish in 1938 (not least in the D Mail) to shout down anyone who warned of impending disaster.

    Just why a willingness to face facts should be seen as unpatriotic, I don’t know. If those promoting Brexit are confident a success can be made of it, they should be able to construct a robust economic case, putting numbers on their projections. But all that seems to come is, “it’ll be fine, the bulldog spirit will triumph.”

  40. Somerjohn

    “Iceberg! Dead ahead!”

    “Stop talking my ship down!”

  41. @JohnPilgrim

    Even accepting all of that, it rather assumes that there are no significant downsides to EU membership which would be perpetuated by staying in – and the ultra-soft Brexit of Starmer, Clegg, Sourby et al is basically that.

    Free movement has had considerable losers. There are areas where school leavers competing for minimum wage jobs against experienced migrants. Self-employed people in areas where an influx of labour must push down the price of labour. Those with families and mortgages in Britain competing for price for those with families in Eastern Europe living in multiple occupancy here. And I know Mary Beard thinks areas should be queuing up to have English a minority language in local schools, but many feel differently.

    I know there is a lump of labour fallacy, but migration enthusiasts seem to have fallen for an automatically expanding economy fallacy. Somehow employing someone fresh from Warsaw is better for the economy than employing a local unemployed person.

    Of course, it may be that the locals who lose out are just lazy or stupid – which is the subtext in the “jobs locals can’t or won’t do” mantra. But even if that were so, and even though businesses are doubtless economically rational to buy in trained, experienced labour willing to work long hours for low pay, it does not necessarily amount to a good long term national business model.

    Now, I know that there are those for whom free movement is all Erasmus scholarships, holiday homes in Provence, and an experienced nanny for minimum wage, but not is not all sunshine

    Retaining free movement means essentially writing off the problems of those who lose by it. Indeed, given that that there is a high rate of net migration from low income EU countries, the model of reliance on migrant labour seems to be ever expanding in the British economy.

    You cannot offset the problems by throwing money at training. School leaver with patchy GCSEs vs 10 years in work Polish woman working far below her expertise… what sort of investment bridges that gap?

    So, however much it is true that Brexit may hurt this or that part of the economy, there are parts of the country where Remaining will perpetuate economic problems, and quite possibly spread them. That is before the housing and infrastructural costs of migration (not just EU, I admit) wipes out all the supposed benefits – unless beds-in-sheds is a permanent set up, of course.

    To say something more on subject for a polling site, if Remainers do succeed in maintaining free movement, then UKIP will be back and more powerful. I suppose they imagine that everyone will just decide that the EU is a great idea, can’t live without it, and free movement just has to be accepted, so we all get with the program.

    The present approach of Starmer, Clegg, Sourby et al is that things like financial passporting are so important, we just give up on addressing free movement in advance of negotiations. Assuming UKIP doesn’t absolute kill itself, success will give it an open goal in many constituencies.

    Just as the vote for Brexit doesn’t mean those who support the EU just go away and that the arguments in favour disappeared, nor will arguments for Brexit disappear if Remainers succeed in turning this around.

  42. TOH

    @” She strikes me as a tough lady who will get things done”

    Yes I agree. No reason at present to depart that opinion, which seems to be generally shared if OPs be believed..

    Of course “getting things done” on Brexit is not entirely in her gift-which prompts the intriguing thought…………..

    ……….supposing Walloon syndrome plus a bit Junkerishness & a liberal dose of EU Prevarication destroys all hope of access to the Single Market for UK free of both Tariff & non-Tariff barriers by the end of the A50 period. So we depart EU on trade terms no better than USA or whoever-but freed of ECJ writ, and financial contributions ?

    As Banks start to move staff from London , I wonder who the UK voting public will blame?

    Theresa May-or Those much respected & deeply loved Bankers , and the Brussels Punishment squad?

  43. “Between Tuesday 11th and Friday 14th October 2016, YouGov surveyed 4,507 adults in England and Wales. Respondents were asked two questions. First, they were asked how they would vote in a general election, and were given as possible response options the standard list of parties YouGov uses for such questions. A second question was then asked including a STOP BREXIT party in the list.

    The actual wording for England is in the chart above. Welsh respondees were offered an additional choice of PC.

    It will be recalled that just after the Witney by-election was called the ex-LD leader, Paddy Ashdown, floated such a candidate in Cameron’s old seat with Labour and the Lib Dems standing aside. That didn’t happen.

    The data shows that 50% of REMAIN voters on June 23rd would opt for the new party.”


    The VI which results from the above is :-

    Con 34.1%
    Stop Brexit 24.9%
    Lab 18.7%
    UKIP 14.8%
    others 6.5%

  44. @S THOMAS

    “as a new poster can i say that i am struck by the high number of posters who seem to revel in talking the country down.
    it seems many would prefer to stand amidst the wreckage shouting that they were right rather than turning their minds to how we can turn this to our nations advantage
    we have surely faced darker days and triumphed.”

    I’m not talking the country down but I WILL NOT support a path that I do not agree with and that I believe will lead this nation to ruin and isolation. Have I made myself clear?

    There is no advantage I can see with Brexit, only failure, and yes, I DO NOT want it to work! Only then will people come to their senses and realise it was all a non-starter to begin with.

  45. Colin

    “As Banks start to move staff from London , I wonder who the UK voting public will blame?”

    I doubt that many will give a damn about that in itself. Indeed, if it brings down the cost of housing in London and the South East, many in that region will rejoice!

    However, if a consequence of the loss of much of the UK’s largest exporting sector results in a further collapse of sterling, much reduced tax revenues to the UK Exchequer etc, then the economic consequences will be blamed on the Government in power – regardless of whether those voters thought that Brexit had been a great idea, or not.

    Politicians may whine that the electorate are unfair to them, but tough.

  46. ToH

    While I don’t deny that May has a terribly hard task, I think my attempted satire, judging from all the reputable news sources I can read, on the previous page is closer to the reality than your suggesting that May performed well (I don’t think she could have done a good one anyway).

    From the French and German papers it seems that May starts from the hardest Brexit position, and for the time being it is noted.

    Events can change the situation, but for the time being the winter is coming.

  47. @AL URQA

    “…….Those who have gained nothing from this economy will simply use their anger to remove the benefits to those who have.”

    You have hit the nail bang on the head! Brexit is a revolution of the underclass against the middle classes. The underclass, many of whom ran riot in the summer of 2011, are seeing this as their chance to ram it up the back side of the establishment and the educated classes. If you call this democracy then I’m a prune; this is a revolution. No less a revolution than in 1789 when the French underclass (with middle class leadership) overthrew the cultured and educated ruling class in order to set up a brutal regime much worse than the one they overthrew. This is the danger in Britain. There is a mass of ill educated discontents who see the establishment and the middle classes as an enemy and the EU as the edifice that has sustained this order. The discontents want to overthrow it and inflict pain on those they blame (wrongly) for their troubles. They must NOT succeed! The alternative is that we will be plunged into chaos and disorder for decades to come.

  48. @COLIN

    Interesting. I think the Lib-Dems see an opportunity to gain votes by openly opposing Brexit, especially that given Labour’s leftist adventure there are rich pickings to be had from moderate Labour voters fed up with Corbyn and his acolytes. Many Tories will also want to detach themselves from May if a hard Brexit looks likely and their wealth and well being are put under threat, as looks increasingly inevitable.

  49. Tancred

    The Mount party of the convent had to be brutal as they happened to be attacked by Europe to restore the royal order. The Gironde, the half sophisticated merchants couldn’t bring up any defence, but were happy to undermine the defence.

    As to the educated upper and upper-middle class – why were the sans-culottes so angry – those aristocrats were harvesting the seeds that they saw for hundreds of years.

    And by the way, in proportion, the sans-culottes were the largest group executed during the Terror.

    So, your analogy doesn’t work, and your argument is nonexistent. It reads like a good journalistic piece, but once the golden film is gently scratched, the common copper appears.

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