YouGov’s latest voting intention figures are CON 42%, LAB 25%, LDEM 11%, UKIP 12%, GRN 4%. It was conducted over last weekend, so shortly after the Liberal Democrats’ success in Richmond Park. The 11% for the Lib Dems equals their highest from YouGov since the election, but it’s not a huge bounce and not a record breaker. More notable is the Labour score – 25% is the lowest that Labour have recorded since back in 2009 (as others have commented, it appears to be the lowest they have had in opposition since all the way back in 1983, though that should be seen in the context that there were fewer small parties in the 1980s and the big parties normally had higher scores than are typical these days)

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378 Responses to “YouGov – CON 42, LAB 25, LDEM 11, UKIP 12”

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  1. @NEIL A

    “I’ve actually got less right-wing with age. I was a Young Conservative at about 15.”

    Why doesn’t that surprise me? :-)

    It’s odd because I have also moved leftwards in my later years. When Foot was Labour leader I was an ardent Thatcherite and even a supporter of Enoch Powell. As years went by and my experience of ‘real’ life (as opposed to cloistered education) grew, I became much more of a liberal and also socially aware. I had spells of unemployment and came face to face with real hardship. It was a lesson.
    The young are often arrogant and think they know it all, but then the reality of life hits home.

  2. @Tancred

    The young are often arrogant and think they know it all

    The same also applies to middle aged and older folk too ;-)

    I find all too often older folk become less flexible and unable to accept change.

  3. CMJ

    “I find all too often older folk become less flexible and unable to accept change.”

    I just find it difficult to accept how little change I get when i buy something! :-)

  4. @tancred

    For me it was more about pragmatism.

    In the 1980s there was a great belief in the Tory party that “markets were the answer”. Time, experience and age have taught me that there aren’t really any answers, just the best plan you can come up with on the basis of the available evidence. I still tend to find that markets are a big ingredient in those plans, but usually they need to be alloyed with something else and sometimes they really don’t make sense at all.

    I’ve never really lost my belief in what might be termed “fiscal prudence” though.

    On social issues I’ve moved quite far in the direction of liberalism although I’d like to think I was never too much of a reactionary. I still have some of the underlying beliefs, but they are much more layered now as a result of my exposure to all sorts of different people and my realisation that there really is good and bad in every part of human society. I’ve gone from being against same sex marriage to for it for example, and from being against the right to choose to for it (I still don’t like it, I just wouldn’t ban it).

    On environmental issues, I was always pretty “green” and that’s stayed fairly constant. As a teenager my friends would joke that I was a Conservative because I got confused and mixed the word up with Conservationist.

    On UK constitutional issues I’ve gone from straight FPTP conservative to wanting to abolish the House of Lords, and introduce federalism and PR. Always been a monarchist though and I suspect I always will be.

    The only issue where I’ve probably moved the other way is law and order. It’s hard to spend 26 years in the police and not develop a disdain for hang-wringing do-gooders. However, I have always been against capital punishment, have supported the legalisation of (all) recreational drugs for about 20 years and consider myself something of a libertarian on criminal law. My mantra is that only really bad things should be illegal, but that if you’re caught doing them you should be punished extremely severely.

  5. test

  6. @NEIL A

    “The only issue where I’ve probably moved the other way is law and order. It’s hard to spend 26 years in the police and not develop a disdain for hang-wringing do-gooders. However, I have always been against capital punishment, have supported the legalisation of (all) recreational drugs for about 20 years and consider myself something of a libertarian on criminal law. My mantra is that only really bad things should be illegal, but that if you’re caught doing them you should be punished extremely severely.”

    Certainly when you are in the police you often see the worst of human nature. All the police officers I’ve known have told me this – it is an experience that marks you for life. I once considered going into the police because I liked the good pension scheme, but I would never have cut the mustard – I hate confrontation and in dangerous situations I would either have exploded with rage or, at the other end, become frozen with fear. Both reactions would have led to disaster. I’m an emotional person and in the police you need to be very self-controlled. This is why I have great admiration for all those who work in this field.

  7. @CATMANJEFF

    “The same also applies to middle aged and older folk too ;-)
    I find all too often older folk become less flexible and unable to accept change.”

    True, and in many cases that is because these older people have been stuck in their ways for a very long time. As an example, my brother-in-law will never even consider buying a French car now because of a bad experience in 1978 when he drove a Renault 4 and it caused him many problems. Not once has he considered doing research on modern French vehicles that are far more reliable. He is unwilling to move from the safety of his prejudice. For many older people, old prejudices are like an anchor in a sea of change – they keep them in familiar waters, protecting them from the waves of progress.

  8. It certainly has a great pension scheme, the fruits of which I am not that far from reaping! How long ago now it seems when I picked up that leaflet in the careers library and turned to the back page with the “terms and conditions of service – salary and pensions” section…

    As for admiration, there are plenty of professions I admire more than the police. It’s a pretty shoddy affair a lot of the time, and many of those who work in it are lazy, incompetent and disrespectful. However, I suspect that is true more or less everywhere. I certainly know that the year I spent working in a hospital before I joined taught me that the godlike reverence enjoyed by doctors is frequently misplaced.

  9. Alec

    “The Tragedy of the Commons is about the over exploitation of a finite resource that is open to all – something like unregulated fishing, for example.”

    I’d say the fish in this example is the pool of potential revenue created by the amount of wages over subsistence.

    If a firm drives their own wage costs to subsistence they can still fish in that pool even though they are no longer chipping into it themselves.

    Except if they all do it and the pool is empty.

    But it doesn’t matter as long as the gist is understood.

    #

    For anyone who ever swotted up on Marxism for any reason the irony is it’s a kind of capitalist version of the labour theory of value.

  10. spinner99 and Dave,
    ” Only someone who wanted the negotiations to fail would declare up front that whatever the EU offers us we must have access to the single market and customs union.”

    The problem is, the negotiators and those who have to live with the deal are not the same persons. A negotiator cannot make an acceptible deal unless he knows what your bottom line really is. Does the Uk population have confidence that May knows and accepts their bottom line? Does parliament have confidence in May? the answer to both these questions being ‘no’, then it is impossible to stand aside and not brief the negotiators ourselves. These are not negotiations which can be negotiated in secret.

    The real problem is that many parties are being wholly secretive about their aims and therefore a genuine consensus cannot be obtained.

    To extend your wartime analogy, our situation now is that if the public discovers the invasion is to go through Normandy, 60% of the population might oppose it because they refuse to countenance the destruction of that fair land. But if they learn it is to go through Calais, then a different 60% will refuse to agree to the destruction of that fine city. So neither alternative is acceptable to the British, never mind the view of the Germans. The British leadership, being well aware of this difficulty, refuses to explain to its own citizens that it cannot deliver what they have asked for because they have given it contradictory instructions.

    Alec,
    Perhaps you are misapplying the ‘tragedy of the commons’. The national common stock in question is not fish or workforce, but companies which employ people. We have ‘overfished’ and sold off our national resource of companies because of the profits to be made from harvesting and selling them, until now there are none left to employ anyone.

  11. Continuing good news on the economy generally although costs are continuing to rise due in part to the devaluation of the £.

    The Lloyds Bank Regional PMI

    The PMI for England rose to a ten-month high of 55.8 in November, up from 54.9 in October. A reading greater than 50 signifies growth in business activity, and the greater the divergence from the 50 mark, the faster the rate of change.

    At a regional level, the strongest output growth was seen in the West Midlands (58.9), while the East of England (57.1) and East Midlands (56.7) also performed better than the average. The month’s main underperformers were the North East (52.2) and Yorkshire & Humber (54.0), where rates of business activity growth were slower than in October. Business activity in Wales, meanwhile, showed the largest rise since June 2015, with its PMI having risen for the fourth month in a row to 57.3. The increase in output seen in November was accompanied by a further rise in employment, as rates of job creation across England and Wales picked up speed, reaching the fastest level for ten and 16 months respectively.

    On a different note, November saw the continuation of strong upward pressure on businesses’ costs. This led to the rate of increase in average prices charged for goods and services staying close to October’s five-and-a-half year high.

  12. TOH

    you and your good news!Dont you realise that you have just got the week of at least half of the posters on this site off to a very bad start.

    If the news is good their deep and unfathomable love of the EU becomes even more bizarre. I trust they have all read the Junckers speech on the future prospects for the EU.It was like a civil service briefing paper from pre-thatcher Britain.Junckers promised that the EC could manage the decline of the EU better than states couuld do themselves.
    I do not think that this is acceptable for the UK and want instead to be part of dynamic areas of the world economy. Managed decline should not be an option for this country.

  13. This used to be a forum for polite and reasoned discussion…

  14. Thoughtful, if you wish to support lgbt people, start here.

    http://www.stonewall.org.uk

  15. Valerie. I hope you stay.

  16. I think a balanced way to look at this debate is to say that social media and the manufactured outrage you receive from the liberal left of any view thats slightly off track from their’s means that polls are increasingly now out of sync from reality as people don’t like revealing their true views for fear of brow beating in public. It’s ironically the antithesis of what liberalism should be, but for me, this is now severely distorting all polls. I would’nt be surprised if the Tories were comfortably 20 points ahead.

    Anyway, just my honest view of where we are.

  17. OldNat

    By the time I saw the Graun headline this morning it had been changed to ‘NHS England sending anorexic patients to Scotland for treatment’. Perhaps a unionist somewhere in the editorial chain decided it wasn’t very appropriate to talk about ‘exile’ when referring to travel within the country :)

  18. S THOMAS

    Well you can’t please eveybod, but since I don’t want to join the endless and fairly fruitless speculation about Brexit i just ry and provide good news for those who like it. Those who forecast an instant recession seem to have got it wrong, even the “experts”.

    :-)

    Valerie

    Perhaps i’m being thick, but could you explain what you find wrong with Thoughtful’s 10.31 post. I suspect he is voicing a view on political correctness that would be supported by the majority of the population. Certainly i think it has gone over the top in the UK.

  19. @Rich

    No, the balanced way to look at it would be, you know, balanced.

    Thus, some PC stuff is reasonable. For example the avoidance of stigmatising labels, othering etc.

    But yes, it can in itself at times be co-opted to stigmatise others. E.g. some concerns about immigration being branded racist when not.

    Thus a balanced approach requires proceeding on a case-by-case basis rather than blanket condemnations.

    Similarly, if people are holding back from expressing legitimate views for fear of unfair stigma, that’s one thing. But if they are having to hold back from expressing stigmatising views, that’s another…

  20. Interesting from the Telegraph

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/12/11/jeremy-corbyn-has-12-months-turn-labour-party-around-according/

    my personal view is that Corbyn has always intended to gain control of the internal Labour Party policy mechanisms and as soon as that was achieved relinquish an office which he had never wanted and to which he is not suited (he has always been more concerned with policy than his personal position). Is this reference to the polls by his allies long plan preparation for that? Polls can turn around, but can they do so that quickly? Unlikely! that is something these supporters know.
    Candy mentioned in previous thread about the leadership percentages: if there is control of the party mechanisms that can be changed at the next conference, additionally those on the moderate left might find enthusiasm for a compromise candidate (Clive Lewis and Lisa Nandy have both been mentioned in this regard).
    The Labour party is currently in an existential struggle, this might be the way that provides the best chance of survival.

  21. @Alec
    @Greenies
    @Anyone trying to get their head around the Corbyn phenomenon…

    Speaking of Corbyn, the other day in the Indeoendent, it said Corbyn was “considering radical plans to ban the sale of new petrol cars in the UK, The Independent can reveal.

    The bold proposal would mean only zero- or low-carbon vehicles being sold after a set cut-off date, dramatically reducing air pollution and potentially saving thousands of lives.

    The move would form part of a broader and revolutionary package of measures to transform Britain into a low-carbon nation.”

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/petrol-car-ban-jeremy-corbyn-labour-proposal-air-pollution-climate-change-measure-uk-a7466301.html

    “Other ideas Mr Corbyn is exploring include smashing the dominance of the “big six” energy firms by allowing any individual who generates electricity to sell it to their neighbours.

    There is also a proposal for a new system to turbo-charge the upgrading of British homes to make them more energy-efficient, saving people hundreds of pounds on energy bills.

    The policies would help Mr Corbyn fulfil a pledge to create an energy policy “for the 60 million, not the big six” and make the UK a leader in green industries creating hundreds of thousands of jobs.

    But they would also draw a clear dividing line with Theresa May’s Tories, for whom environmental policy has fallen down the agenda…”

    “Under current rules individuals who generate electricity can only sell it back into the grid, but Labour will consider a change to allow people to sell to each other, undoing the stranglehold corporate giants have on supply. “

  22. @Thoughtful

    “The post today was in response to OLDNAT who claimed that PC was just a benign form of modern manners which I do not agree with.

    It is hugely relevant to polling and elections because it is affecting what people are prepared to reveal, and it’s a large contributory factor in the election of Donald Trump.

    If your complaining about one sided posting then there’s plenty you could accuse of that !”

    ———–

    Yes, one can see you were responding to Oldnat. This was not in dispute!!

    I agree that this can affect polling too, and furthermore gave an example when it might, e.g. concerns about immigration being interpreted as racism.

    These were not the source of concern, as I’m sure you are aware!!

  23. I like JC but he has become a figure out of the life of Brian to the membership.Every pun intended.

    when the current madness abates labour still has enough good people to make 2025 interesting

  24. BT , militant gay rant? Hardly.
    Sorry if you were offended.

    What on earth is a militant gay ? I merely reacted to his/ er ongoing assertions.

    There are many gay issues that could be discussed here but I don’t raise them as this isn’t the place.

    I rarely post let alone with an agenda so calling me a militant gay is unfortunate and not born out by facts. I am actually quite the opposite and rarely show signs of affection to my partner in public cos I fear opprobrium from intolerants.

  25. S THOMAS

    2025 is 8/9 years away and the people who are ‘good’ might have resigned / retired through losing seats or deselection, and there will be a whole new generation ready to step into their shoes.

    Did anyone predict the rise of a young Tony Blair at the time of John Smith ?

    The problem any future stars are going have will be a lack of experience if there is a wipe out at the elections, plus a potential lack of media exposure.

  26. BT, thanks, I am no peter tatchell I assure you though I do admire his activism.

  27. I bet the zappers coming. I think we should all have a cup of tea now and calm down and move on.

  28. Danny An interesting extension
    “To extend your wartime analogy, our situation now is that if the public discovers the invasion is to go through Normandy, 60% of the population might oppose it because they refuse to countenance the destruction of that fair land. But if they learn it is to go through Calais, then a different 60% will refuse to agree to the destruction of that fine city. So neither alternative is acceptable to the British, never mind the view of the Germans. The British leadership, being well aware of this difficulty, refuses to explain to its own citizens that it cannot deliver what they have asked for because they have given it contradictory instructions. ”
    No instructions were given as to how an invasion should be mounted.
    Your percentages do not negate the original result – though there was no referendum on whether an invasion should be undertaken. But 60% against an invasion through Normandy does not mean a majority against invasion. Likewise Calais.
    What your extension illustrates is that having taken a strategic decision (invasion, Brexit) it is unwise to reveal the tactics needed to achieve it, and those attempting it have to be trusted to achieve the objective. Revealing the tactics means (1) allowing endless discussion on our side of whether the tactics are right; and (2) risking failure if the other side is aware of our intentions and limits.

    IMHO the PM has set out sufficient objectives for a judgement to be made after the fact of an exit agreement on whether those objectives have been achieved.

    To push the analogy a little further, success is most frequently achieved if action can be both secret and quick.

  29. ICM poll

    Conservatives: 41% (down 3 points from ICM two weeks ago)
    Labour: 27% (down 1)
    Ukip: 14% (up 2)
    Lib Dems: 9% (up 2)
    Greens: 3% (down 1)

    Conservative lead: 14 points (down 2)

    Labour on a Roll :-)

  30. @ Colin

    At last some polling stats: conversation here from some getting unsubtly aggressive:

    Labour are in trouble, clear that something has to give, if the vote of no confidence had not taken place in the Summer might be some movement in Parliament but that boat has sailed. As earlier I am of the view that likely to see new leader on Corbyn retirement in 2018/19

  31. Only thing is will there be too much damage done by that stage!

    Afterthoughts eh!

  32. I still believe my summary about Lib Dems on the way up given the evidence of Richmond Park is accurate.

    Yes, it was just one bielection and yes the polls don’t show a massive surge.

    But the polls only demonstrate the outcome of the debates in the minds of all voters when the poll was asked.

    What Richmond Park and the other bielections are increasingly showing is that the rules of the game appear to have changed. Under the new rules, the moment a campaign begins and the arguments are used, the Lib Dems surge and Labour’s vote collapses.

    We all know limitations in the polls. One of the limitations is that the polls are only based on the debates in the minds of the voters at the time. If the debate that takes place on election day is radically different, the polls cannot be relied on.

    Basically, its like trying to predict the outcome of the debate by measuring only people’s views before they entered the debating arena and heard any of the arguments. This is usually reliable because the “rules of the debate” don’t change that much from one election to the next. But Brexit has completely shaken up these rules of the debate and all subsequent bielections seem to suggest the views of people before they enter the debating arena are radically different from the views they have after having heard all the new arguments.

    If I’m right, then their is a gap between the national polls today and what they will be during election time and as more and more contested elections happen around the country (thereby exposing more people to today’s debate) the gap between the national polls and the new political reality will slowly correct itself.

    But at the moment, their does indeed seem to be a correction that is needed, which will come mostly in favour of Lib Dems and at Labour’s expense.

  33. @WB

    If things keep shifting to the left, e.g. headlines about upping council tax to pay for social care , then it does potentially make it a little easier for future Labour leaders…

  34. Challenging times for a supporter of JC and labour. If the membership levels drop his position may be challenged again.

  35. Carfrew, and the teetering NHS may haunt tm if things are not sorted. I am surprised that the gov seem unruffled.

  36. Thanks for the poll Colin – very much margin of error stuff and suggesting that, much as expected, there’s been no marked change caused by by-elections,Brexit toing and froing,leather trousers or any other recent phenomena that have passed before the electorate.
    In the many exchanges above there was one poll-related claim by Rich when he stated that the Tories were a good 20% ahead,the implication being that the Tory share is under-stated due to political-correctness inspired fear.Is that a general view here or is it just Rich? Does anyone have any evidence to support such a view?

  37. WB

    Even Livingstone conceded-under persistent questioning from Brillo-that if the Polls haven’t improved for Lab in a year- “people will start to worry” !

    Why would the Members change their mind about JC ?

    A May By election in Leigh with Paul Nuttall standing is going to be rivetting-fingers crossed :-)

    2017 is shaping up to be hugely entertaining across Europe.
    ( not forgetting Trumpland of course )

  38. @WB

    I’m old enough to remember the last time Labour moved to this position with Michael Foot & Militant Tendency, Liverpool council Derek Hatton Et Al.

    Then it took Neil Kinnock an age to drag the Labour party back to anything approaching electability, and while John Smith might have stood a chance Kinnock blew his.

    I use the illustration because I think the simple changing of a leader is no where near enough to make a damaged party return to a state where the voters think they are electable.

    Look how many leaders and elections the Tories went through before Cameron, and despite the economic crisis he didn’t win an outright victory.

    There’s a lot more to recovery it needs a a wo/man with a plan !

  39. HIRETON

    May I suggest that you leave definitions about whether posters are “reasonable” to the appropriate authority-our Host.

    No doubt we all have our own ideas of what & who is and is not “reasonable”.

  40. THOUGHTFUL

    A woman leader of the Labour Party ?

    Now there’s a novel thought !

  41. @Mark W

    I’m prolly gonna take a rain check on the NHS for today!! I have some new synths to play with. (Only software synths, but still…) That said, I’d be surprised if they aren’t planning to do summat about it. Hammond relaxed the budgetary constraints for a reason and I don’t think of was just Brexit…

    Actually, doing summat about social care will likely help NHS anyway…

  42. @COLIN

    “A woman leader of the Labour Party ?
    Now there’s a novel thought !”

    ————–

    So you’re thinking Diane Abbott? She seems well placed…

  43. HIRETON

    Obviously you are referring to me. I would say this, that regardless of where you stand on the political spectrum it is possible to be truthful and reasonable.

    Funny though that you should find that particular post ‘alt right’ as it was written with Jürgen Habermas’s thoughts in mind.

  44. Ten years ago I was a ward manager who spent much of his time just trying to get well patients a place of safety out of the hospital to unblock beds. It was very difficult then before the cuts and restriction on housing supply. It must be so much harder now.

    An NHS winter of discontent is surely a danger for the gov, even with the distraction of brexit?

  45. @Mark W

    I was on the receiving end of that in hospital. Doctors wanted to discharge me, I was like “But I’m still Ill!!”

    A few days later they had to readmit me as I was on my last legs.

    But one wonders as to the salience in polling terms. What proportion of peeps have regular contact with NHS these days? Either directly or via someone close to them…

  46. Toh, aw made a papal bull about the tone of the immigration discussion that I would have thought you might have welcomed.

  47. Carfrew, yes, that did happen back in the day. Its a terrible thing to have to push out poorly people to admid more poorly people. The pressure means poor decision often have to be made.

  48. @Mark W

    Yes, you feel guilty about taking up a bed place. Must be hard having to make those judgements though…

  49. The ICM poll shows no sign of an upturn for Labour.

    Jeremy has 2017 to make a difference. If not, I believe he will be replaced and, with Article 50 having been triggered and HMG deep into the exit talks, maybe the Reds will still have a chance of clawing their way back under a new leader – Starmer, Jarvis perhaps?

    In some ways, giving it 12 months to see how the EU exit talks go could be Labour’s saving grace – they can decide on a position when we know more about the discussions and how they pan out. Meantime, this phoney war period goes on.

  50. It was a multidisciplinary team decision but long winded a fraught with delays as many agents were involved.

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