The Times released their regular YouGov voting intention poll this morning, the first of the new year. Topline figures with changes from before Christmas are CON 39%(nc), LAB 26%(+2), LDEM 10%(-2), UKIP 14%(nc), GRN 4%(nc). There is no significant change, though the boost in Lib Dem support that followed their by-election success appears to have abated. The Conservatives continue to enjoy a double-digit lead, Labour remain in the mid-twenties.

On the regular Brexit trackers things also look steady. 47% think Britain was right to vote to leave, 43% think it was wrong. 57% of people think that the government are doing badly at actually negotiating Brexit, just 20% well. That latter question may very well just be a reflection of the fact that negotiations haven’t started yet, but it will be a tracker to watch once May lays out a more detailled negotiating stance, Article 50 is invoked and things actually start moving.

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368 Responses to “YouGov/Times – CON 39, LAB 26, LDEM 10, UKIP 14, GRN 4”

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  1. Saffer

    Thanks for the Welsh poll links

    Roger Scully’s blog on it is here

  2. Laszlo

    The implications have been clear for a long time, but a journalist’s brief article can end up being rather misleading.

    For example see para 430 on p513 here

  3. @Saffer
    ‘Westminster VI :
    CON 25 (+1) LAB 31 (-3) LD 8 (+2) UKIP 12 (-1) GRN 2 (=), PC 21 (+1) AWAP 1 (=) ‘

    Those are not the correct figures! The data from the January 2015 poll as published is:
    CON 28 (-1)
    LAB 33 (-2)
    LD 9 (+1)
    UKIP 13 (-1)
    GRN 2 (+2)
    PC 13 (=)

    When compared with the May 2015 election this represents a swing from Lab to Con of 2.35% – which is rather lower than the national swing of 3.2% implied by YouGov’s most recent GB poll.

  4. Graham:

    “Those are not the correct figures!”

    You’re right, and I apologise.

    I don’t know what went wrong: I was pasting directly from NC Politics Twitter feed, and thought I was taking suitable care to do so from the correct tweet. Obviously, that was not so.

    Thanks for pointing out my error.

  5. I don’t know if it will affect traditional voting patterns, or not, but the NI GE will be taking place after the UK SC has ruled on the role (if any) that Stormont would have in the tabling of Article 50 and related issues.

    Whatever the SC decides, that would have implications for how NI is accommodated in UK and Irish politics.

  6. Saffer
    I think the figures you gave us referred to the constituency elections to the Welsh Assembly.

  7. To correct my own mistake the figures refer to January 2017!

  8. Also, if SC says NI Assembly must be consulted – but there is no Assembly at the time, because it has been dissolved while a new one is elected …………?

  9. Ruth Davidson confirmed her uturn on membership of the Single Market today aligning herself with May’s Hard Brexit approach after saying post referendum that the UK must maintain membership even if that meant maintaining freedom of movement. This means that her 2016 electoral strategy of distancing herself as far as possible from the Tory party is now defunct in the lead up to the Scottish local elections. It will be interesting to see if this affects VI.

  10. @oldnat

    Perhaps we will get some more NI polling now?

  11. @David Colby – “Trade tariffs are essentially a sales tax on imports. The government could commit to cut VAT by a few decimal points to ‘return’ the money and it would be a zero sum game for the treasury and the consumer.”

    This is not correct, as you are only looking at that part of the economy that is producing goods for home consumption. Trade tariffs are tariffs on trade, in both directions. If the Treasury could redistribute the income raised from the tariffs back to consumers, exporters would still suffer lost sales, with no money coming into the UK government to compensate for this cost.

    On top of that, you have to consider the costs of collecting and enforcing tariffs, other barriers to trade, and the impact on inflation.

    There does seem to be a strand of thinking that is trying to find theoretical ways whereby the impacts of tariffs might be mitigated and neutralised, but the truth is that if we leave the Single Market and experience tariff and other trade barriers, the economy will take a hit, one way or another.

  12. @Peter Cairns,

    I’m not alluding to regulations on bananas and the EU.

    Our friends across the channel is a euphemism for the French. The non-tariff barriers do the most damage to trade. And in some cases can be used as a surreptitious means of placing extreme barriers to trade like putting one customs official on an entire port. Something that used to be done at times to ensure manual choking of imports which is far more effective than a Tariff at stifling competition.

  13. @Hireton –

    Yes that is the sensible immediate course. Set our WTO schedule to that of the EUs to get quicker agreement. Just like placing all the Acquis Communautaire on the statute book. We then make changes at our leisure and in line with what our national strategy is.

  14. @Roll a Hard Six

    Thanks for the poll.

    Little change. And no sign of the supposed LIb Dem “Suuurrrrge” at a national level.

  15. jimjam,
    “The botched Coup and inevitable loss for Owen Smith has, imo enabled the Corbyn fan club to blame the poor poll ratings on the ‘plotters’ as voters don’t like a divided party.”

    If Owen Smith’s loss was ‘inevitable’, you agree he was not a viable candidate for leader. There seems to be a division between the sort of leader the members wants and the MPs. The members chose Corbyn, and quite handsomly. When they did so they must have been aware of arguments about national appeal.

    All quite reminiscent of the result of the referendum, with voters ignoring sound economic advice? Both were ideological choices, not pragmatic ones?

    There is a difference between the reason people believe in a political movement and a desire to hold power. Conservative MPs also avoided allowing their members to choose the leader, for fear they would not choose the right person. Labour MPs would seem to be ideologically at odds with their members and believe they are part of the constitutional setup of the Uk, there to listen to and represent voters, rather than a political pressure group espousing its own cause. Are con and lab tweedledum and tweedledee, merely branches of the state, paid by the state, or do they have a particular view they wish to progress?

    Andrew111, TOH et al.
    “The real question is whether she will change her mind”
    I still think the conservatives are engaged in throwing out ideas to see how they are received. This has been going on for some time. It is becoming clear that not taking a position is wearing thin.

  16. jimjam,
    “2020 will be sufficiently obfuscated (and Labour so weak still) to deliver a Cons (led at least) Government but 2025 will be very interesting.”

    So that would be three scraped victories in a row. Not bad.

    “The question then is as per Andrew how will their business backers react and how will multinationals behave”

    The answer perhaps is they will consider their choice of which other party to support. Anti EU labour, or powerless lib dems, or geographically limited SNP?

    “and if it doesn’t?”
    Then blame it on the voters, they were only obeying orders. Not ideal, but better than nothing. Oh, and also on those nasty europeans who refused to compromise.

  17. Somerjohn

    “Well, I’m baffled. What is the difference between what she’s describing, and you’re endorsing, and a hard Brexit? I genuinely don’t get it. You clearly do, so if I ask you to explain, that’s not points-scoring: it’s a request for help.”

    May does not believe in “Hard Brexit” because she thinks that in the end the EU leaders will come a sensible deal on trade with us while accepting that we will take back control of our borders and withdraw from the jurisdiction of the ECJ. I am sure she believes that they would not insist on “Hard Brexit” because they have at least as much to loose, if not more so that we do. She may be right she may be wrong but IMO that is how she thinks. If they do stay firm on their line, then I think she will as well, and we will end up with what you describe as “Hard Brexit” in which case both we (in the short term) and the EU will lose out economically. My own view accepts that anyway, hence my comment that we need to wait at least until 2025-2030 before assessing the economic benefits or otherwise of leaving the EU.

    Glad to hear that your not point scoring, even if P Cairns is, with his comments.

    Having answered your point, I will now return to not commenting on Brexit until there is some further events or polls which make it worthwhile.

  18. @Alec @Sea Change

    The relative lack of marginal seats now may mean that there is little change in the overall balance of seats between the major parties over the next few elections….meaning a possibility of more coalitions. The LibDems may get asecond chance.

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