ComRes have a poll in Sunday’s Independent and the Sunday Mirror. Most interestingly, it found that people agreed by 45% to 39% that John Bercow was right to refuse to invite Donald Trump to address the Commons, but also that people thought by 47% to 37% that the Queen should meet Donald Trump if he visits the country. As we’ve already seen elsewhere, the British public have little sympathy for Donald Trump’s immigration policy (33% think he was right, 52% think he was wrong) though it’s worth noting that the question wording went considerably wider than Trump’s actual policy (ComRes asked about halting immigration from “Muslim-majority” countries in general, whereas Donald Trump’s policy deals with seven specific countries they claim have an issue with terrorism or vetting).

The poll also had voting intention figures of CON 41%, LAB 26%, LDEM 11%, UKIP 11%, GRN 4%. This is the first ComRes voting intenton poll since way back in June 2016 – after one of the poorer performing polls in the EU referendum (the final ComRes poll had Remain eight points ahead), they paused their voting intention polls while they conducted a review into their methods. They have now recommenced voting intention polls with – as far as I can tell – no changes to their pre-referendum methods. ComRes’s view appears to be that the referendum was an exceptional event, and while the turnout model they adopted after the polling errors of 2015 worked badly there, it worked well at the London mayoral election, so is being retained for Westminster polls. For better or for worse, the ComRes results seem to be very much in line with those from other companies, with a Conservative lead in the mid-teens.

Full tabs for the ComRes poll are here.

While I’m here, I should also mention a BMG Scottish poll that came out at the start of the week (I’ve been laid low with a heavy cold). Voting intention in a second independence referendum stood at YES 49%(+3.5%), NO 49%(-3.5%). This is the lowest lead for NO that any Scottish Indy poll has recorded since the EU referendum. This was interpreted by the Herald as a response to Theresa May’s announcement of her negotiating stance on Brexit. I think that is somewhat premature – so far we’ve had two Scottish polls conducted since May’s speech, a Panelbase poll showing a very small (and not statistically significant) movement towards NO and a BMG poll showing a somewhat larger (but still barely significant) movement towards YES. In short, there is nothing yet that couldn’t be normal sample variation – wait for the next few polls on attitudes towards Scottish independence before concluding whether there is or is not any movement. Full tabs are here


325 Responses to “ComRes/Indy/Sunday Mirror – CON 41, LAB 26, LD 11, UKIP 11”

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  1. The Titanic is a ship of the Brexit line, struck by the EU iceberg that the captain didn’t see coming. The architect of it all went down with the ship as those in first class clamored for the lifeboats.
    In third class the ordinary people were left to drown.

  2. Looking at the last few rather silly posts I will retire again and watch Scotland v France, much more entertaining. Enjoy your nonesense,

  3. @Danny

    “In 2008, circumstances aligned to keep down inflation, not least that the rest of the world was suffering similar difficulties. The difference is that Brexit is a uniquely british economic problem. I think the economic damage to the EU might be uncomfortable in what is still a bad time, but it will be second order compared to effects in the UK. The omens do not seem especially good for even a transitional deal, so a short term hit in the Uk seems highly likely. I have always seen the long term to be the problem. Short term, there is potential for runaway inflation, which might at least help with the debt. Inflation always struck me as backdoor taxation.”

    ————

    Yes, ‘circumstances aligned’ to keep inflation down, and as I say, one of those circumstances, is not being at full employment.

    We have not had full employment for decades, and unsurprisingly we have not had significant inflation issues for decades, whatever the circumstances. Because excess money in the economy creating demand can be offset by upping production.

    In the days of the post-war settlement, when we had full employment, inflation was a constant worry that needed constant attention. We could still have serious inflation now, like in the Seventies, but it would need something more than the QE we’ve had so far. Alternwtively it might be more of a problem as we near full employment.

  4. We haven’t even triggered Article 50 yet (this probably needs to be a sticky post at the top of every thread).

    There is a lot more road to run. Anyone who cannot see any way back for either Labour or the Lib Dems is not trying hard enough. There are many plausible scenarios for the next 2 years – they probably have the widest range of potential outcomes any of us have ever seen. The most likely scenario is that in 2020 the Conservatives win a comfortable election victory.
    However if there was ever a situation where a party 17 points behind in the polls could win an election scarcely 3 years later, it is now. A convincing new leader and a botched Brexit – both of which are perfectly possible – and polling could look very different.

    The Tories know this, of course.

  5. CHRIS RILEY, good post and though at the moment the Tories look a shoe in for the 2020 GE you can never tell. Brexit events and imo the Labour leadership will play a great part in the 2020 GE. and I just don’t see Corbyn as Labour leader by then.

  6. Re: Stoke Central

    I’ve been looking at the data around this by-election quite closely.

    If you take the 2015 result and apply the vote changes predicted by national vote changes and regional vote changes, it would leave Labour on about 33% and the Conservatives and UKIP around 24%.

    However, this analysis puts the Lib Dems on about 8%, and this feels too low. I looked at the Lib Dem vote in Sleaford (a strong Brexit seat), and from a similar position the Lib Dems did much better in the by-election (around 18% in 2005, about 6% in 2015), ending up with 11%.

    The Witney and Sleaford by-elections both show the Lib Dems polled about 60-65% of their 2005 vote – implying about 10-11% in Stoke Central.

    Where would this vote come from in Stoke Central? Labour? The Conservatives?

    Labour’s cushion looks okay, but if tactical anti-Labour voting happens in Stoke, it looks tight. However, tactical voting to keep Labour over UKIP is quite possible too, leading to an easy ‘Hold’..

    Intriguing to say the least.

  7. @ Alec

    It may be a personal thing but in my experience, being called ‘Mrs’ in this sort of context, is usually a bit more of a put down than most men realise or intend … (Of course, that it also reminds me of Benny Hill might be a more powerful incentive to modify the ‘banter’).

  8. @Syzygy

    Not embarrassing for the recipient, in my perception. Alec had a disagreement with Thomass’ views the other day, IIRC.

  9. Syzygy

    I don’t understand your complaint. When they visit the world of male sports, men want women to look cute and make the tea/bring the beer. And please, don’t ask about the offside rule, in either football or rugby.

    OTOH, try being a man in a room full of women and babies. You are expected to smile nicely, stand up straight and be as charming as you can manage.

    Seems fair.

  10. Syzygy

    I forgive him.Persons of scottish heritage sometimes have diificulty in this regard. I await a post from him telling me he thinks that i am not white.

    All posters should be considered for good or ill on their posts and nothing else.
    in the light of his posts we ought to consider a carrot and stick approach to him , TOH can supply the carrots.

  11. I grow hazel trees, so could provide sticks if required/

  12. @ Wood

    I was expressing my own discomfort at what did not look like a level playing field to me… it literally seemed ‘below the belt’. No doubt S Thomas can look after her/himself but I don’t think ‘Mr Alec’ has anything like the same sexist connotations.

  13. @ S THOMAS

    :)

  14. Another brilliant game of Rugby, Scotland played very well again but could not hold on in the last 20 minutes. France win a close game by 6 points and Scotland have a lot of injuries including Laidlaw. Very entertaining all. England clear at the top of the table now. Have a good evening.

  15. TOH

    That was one of the most bruising games I have seen in ages!

  16. @Syzygy – “…but I don’t think ‘Mr Alec’ has anything like the same sexist connotations.”

    But no one knows if I really am ‘Mr’ Alec…….

    I will cease and desist anyway, as the gag has now passed.

    @TOH – not too disappointed with the result. It would have been somewhat unfair on the French if the current five nations champions had prevailed, but we did pick up a losers bonus point and outscored them on the try score.

    But wouldn’t have been fantastic if Hogg’s 77th minute run had got them to the line…?

  17. @ Alec

    Ta very. Tbh it didn’t really seem fit with you as a person.

  18. CARFREW

    “Yes, ‘circumstances aligned’ to keep inflation down, and as I say, one of those circumstances, is not being at full employment.
    We have not had full employment for decades, and unsurprisingly we have not had significant inflation issues for decades, whatever the circumstances. Because excess money in the economy creating demand can be offset by upping production.
    In the days of the post-war settlement, when we had full employment, inflation was a constant worry that needed constant attention. We could still have serious inflation now, like in the Seventies, but it would need something more than the QE we’ve had so far. Alternatively it might be more of a problem as we near full employment.”

    Agreed – but at least the deflation threat has gone for now.

    @ CATMANJEFF
    “Re: Stoke Central
    I’ve been looking at the data around this by-election quite closely.
    If you take the 2015 result and apply the vote changes predicted by national vote changes and regional vote changes, it would leave Labour on about 33% and the Conservatives and UKIP around 24%.”

    Are the Conservatives the dark horse in Stoke Central? It would be a major coup for them to win both of the by-elections, but I suspect a lot of former UKIPers are only going one place when you consider that Article 50 is imminent. Their candidates looks good in both contests.

  19. @Jonesinbangor

    Are the Conservatives the dark horse in Stoke Central? It would be a major coup for them to win both of the by-elections, but I suspect a lot of former UKIPers are only going one place when you consider that Article 50 is imminent. Their candidates looks good in both contests.

    On a low turnout, this seat could go three ways at a stretch, depending on the tactical voting on the day. Labour must be strong favourites, as UKIP or the Tories need a strong anti-Labour tactical switch to beat them. I have no idea if this looks like happening on the ground.

    The Lib Dems? Who knows? They are impossible to predict at the moment.

  20. @Jonesinbangor

    Re: Former UKIP voters…

    You highlight very well the fact now May wants to take the UK into a hard Brexit, UKIP’s unique selling point has now large become irrelevant.

    They need a serious rebranding and strategic shift to remain relevant in my view.

  21. Strong Brexiteers will be as keen to leave the European Common Aviation Area as they are to leave Euratom.

    Voters may be more concerned if they can’t fly to the beaches on the Med.
    .
    https://www.ft.com/content/a62b292a-ef99-11e6-930f-061b01e23655

    The Anglo-Spanish tussle over the rock of Gibraltar has emerged as a significant hazard in Britain’s search for an ambitious Brexit deal to preserve access to Europe’s skies for its £60bn airline industry.

    While Spain has made positive overtures to London since the Brexit vote and warned Europe against seeking a punitive deal, it has also signalled it would block UK access to the EU’s single aviation market unless the terms exclude Gibraltar’s international airport.

    “Any EU agreement with the UK on aviation cannot apply to the airport of Gibraltar,” said one Spanish diplomat. “A deal that is applicable to the airport of Gibraltar would imply recognition of the legal right of the UK to the territory.”

  22. Good evening all from a very fine evening here in rural Hampshire. Anyone fancy some mountain biking next weekend down at Queen Elizabeth Country then give me a shout. Some great trails as I discovered today.

    ALEC

    “A 3% ‘surge’ for the Lib Dems certainly doesn’t look that stunning on the face of it, but if that is disproportionately concentrated in one or two stronger areas, then this could – literally – change the course of history”

    “For example, Lib Dem activists are extremely chipper in those SW seats they lost to Cons in 2015”
    ________

    Now I’m not having a bash at the Lib/Dems but it must be heartening for them to read that your usual prophet of doom & gloom tendencies hasn’t quite reached their election chances yet. ;-)

    However, I’ve not seen any polling evidence to suggest that there is a SW swing towards the Lib/Dems yet. The SW has been a traditional stronghold for the party but apart from Bristow, South Hams, Exeter and my Grandparents council of Mendip, all the other council areas voted to leave.

    I’m guessing the LibDems held around 12 seats prior to 2015 in the SW , so if the Tories are still polling around 40% in 2020, up 3% then one might assume the Tories are polling greater in the SW than in 2015 which makes the task o the Lib/Dems picking up seats from the Tories even harder.

    I doubt very much the Lib/Dem 3% surge is concentrated in one area, probably more like being a universal national 3% increase in which case means their chances of winning most of their seats back in 2020 are very slim.

  23. S THOMAS

    “All posters should be considered for good or ill on their posts and nothing else.
    in the light of his posts we ought to consider a carrot and stick approach to him , TOH can supply the carrots.
    …………..
    PETE B
    I grow hazel trees, so could provide sticks if required
    __________

    I hope Alec appreciates the generosity shown on UKPR tonight ;-)

  24. SOMERJOHN
    Allan Christie: “Agreement at last!!”

    “The graciousness of UKPR posters is a shining beacon in a dark world”
    ________

    Steady on, the only other time I can recall agreement on UKPR between posters was when they were agreeing that the Happeh Theory didn’t form part of the monster raving loony party’s manifesto.

  25. @AC – I’m Scottish, so used to being beaten, but the carrots might help me see better in the gloom.

  26. Talking of the Monster Raving Looney party, there was a brief item featuring The Incredible Flying Brick, their Stoke candidate, on the Daily Politics. His main policy was to stock the Trent with piranha so that angling can become a spectator sport. :-)

  27. @Catmanjeff “On a low turnout, this seat could go three ways at a stretch,”

    I worked in Stoke for many years, and was there in the mid 1990s when there was a surprising turnout for Independents in local elections, overturning something over 50 years of Labour control, IIRC. I do remember observing to a Labour councillor that an occasional change was no bad thing, keeping Labour on its toes and stopping complacency. He went white.
    But as I’ve said before, I think people vote against what they don’t want, so
    a. Stoke will not swing to Tory in large numbers. I think they are lucky to get 30% there.
    b. Stoke is getting the Brexit it voted for, so no need to vote UKIP
    c. Most likely outcome I think is a low turnout, perhaps offset by general national publicity that this is an important election. That may turn it into a vote for the candidate, not the party. Paul Nuttall is a big(gish) name, which may carry some weight in Parliament, while Gareth Snell’s ‘local’ tag as ex-Chairman of Newcastle Labour Council may not mean as much as some expect, Newcastle not being part of the Potteries. Some of his statements don’t inspire me to have confidence in him.
    d. Then there are the immigrants issues, producing votes for and against Labour.
    I think it depends on how well Paul Nuttall is going down on the doorstep. Word of mouth is quite powerful still.

  28. ALEC

    Make sure you get a sack load of carrots from TOH to see you through your gloom. ;-)
    ……….

    PETE B

    Ha! he would get my vote if I was living in the area. :-)

  29. @OLDNAT

    As one who argues for independence, I’m sure that you can see a possible UK response to a Spanish problem with recognising Gibraltar is the suggestion that the UK will recognise an independent Catalonia (or even Euskadi)?

    Which do you think is more important to Spain – holding on to Catalonia (pop 7.5 million) or gaining Gibraltar (pop 30 thousand)?

  30. @Dave

    I lived in Stoke Central from 1991 to 1997 (and was in the LP then) and the local council was a rotten borough. There were 60 councillors seats and every single one was Labour. Labour’s opposition came from different factions of the same party.

    I think that many from the group of independents came from one of the Labour factions IIRC. There was also a larger than average support that developed for the BNP.

    For what it’s worth, I would put the chances of winning as follows:

    Labour – 70%
    UKIP – 20%
    Conservative – 5 %
    Lib Dem – 5%

  31. @Dave

    BTW I always chuckled when some people thought Tristam Hunt was too ‘posh’ for the seat.

    Mark Fisher, Tristam’s predecessor, made Tristam look down-trodden.

  32. “In third class the ordinary people were left to drown.”

    they were already drowning

  33. WYRM

    Recognising an independent Catalunya and/or Euskadi before they had voted for independence might be a little tricky.

    Also, it wouldn’t sit very well with denying an Article 30 based referendum to Scotland.

    However, if you are sure that such “sending a gunboat” tactics (it couldn’t be a sub, as the UK ones are out of commission) could persuade Spain to allow negotiations on arrangements to succeed the European Common Aviation Area (which the ardent Brexiteers will want to leave anyway), within the next couple of years, then you should make that suggestion to Downing Street.

  34. “It is quite amazing that Copeland has been all but written off, a seat that Labour has held since 1935!”

    This sounds like spin to me. Copeland hasn’t been written off for Labour by any means. It’ll probably be very close.

  35. Wyrm: ” a possible UK response to a Spanish problem with recognising Gibraltar is the suggestion that the UK will recognise an independent Catalonia (or even Euskadi)?”

    Surely the point of Oldnat’s example of the horse-trading that may imperil the UK’s access to European airspace is that if we choose splendid isolation over collaboration, then we will have to cope with the process of haggling with 27 sets of conflicting interests rather than contributing to the best common solution.

  36. Somerjohn

    Mind you, Wyrm’s idea has interesting possibilities.

    Regardless of the wishes of the folk living in particular places, other states could simply recognise bits of them as “independent states”.

    Spain could recognise Scotland, Wales and NI. Italy could recognise Corsica. Everyone could recognise Wyrm’s street – the possibilities are endless! :-)

  37. Going back to the Lib Dem ” revival “, I’ve thought for a while that the Lib Dems will have a good set of local election results this May, which is not necessarily reflected in current polling..

    UKIP’s USP was ” Europe ” …as the public can see the process of Brexit happening, there will be many who will think that it’s ” job done ” so what’s the point of voting for them ?

    In some areas of the Country, many of the electorate would never vote Labour or Tory, as thet are the traditional ” enemy “. The L/D’s were always the repository for protest votes, they lost this for Labour voters when they joined the co-alition but as memories fade, they may resume this…

    Votes from left of Centre Tories, concerned at spending cuts to Council budgets, concern over NHS etc

    Remainers will be attracted from both the main parties, to make a point if nothing else, it’s not a GE after all..

    Traditional Labour voters who can’t stomach UKIP but won’t vote Tory either, but can’t/won’t support Labour under Corbyn….

    Add in the large increase in L/D membership therefore activists, and the low starting point, as they suffered in 2013 and I think they’ll do well in May…

  38. On Spain

    Both the UK & Spain are natural allies when it comes to their existential problems. Gibraltar is secondary and as long as Spain’s pride is not further aggrieved I’m quite sure that particular can is going to be kicked down the road. The UK government’s position is Catalonia is Spanish as are Ceuta and Melilla and it is highly unlikely anything would be done to undermine that.

  39. @OLDNAT

    “before they had voted for independence”

    Catalonia is voting (unless Spain sends in the army) in September this year. Given that the ’14 referendum (which Spain deemed was illegal) achieved a majority for independence, it appears a plausible scenario.

    “Article 30” – Could you be a bit more precise, please? EU Acquis, UN Treaty, NATO Treaty, Geneva Convention … ? Not providing sufficient information about which document is like Michael Green’s “The Art of Coarse Rugby” where he suggests giving the opposition directions to your home ground from Acton station (there are seven Acton stations in London).

    As far as ‘gunboat diplomacy’ goes, if, as you suggest, Spain uses a gunboat, why would it be surprising, or unreasonable, if the UK responded with a gunboat?

  40. Coordinated attempts to influence the political agenda through careful placing of positivity in various public fora is a well established tactics for political parties and one which a sceptic may think is being adopted presently with this site being a tiny part of that endeavour.

  41. Sea Change

    Since the UK has never had to take a position on the status of Catalunya, I’d be interested to see the detail of “the UK government’s position is Catalonia is Spanish as are Ceuta and Melilla.”

    Is it different from a general adherence to the UN position on “territorial integrity” of existing states not being threatened by force/

  42. @SOMERJOHN

    OLDNAT’s posting suggested followed a common “Remainer” argument that, in any negotiations, EU members can make threats without consequences, while the UK cannot. Obviously threats can be made by both sides, and I just chose an example that I thought OLDNAT would be up to date on. (I was surprised he was unaware about September’s upcoming referendum). I just found it funny that he would use Spain’s two of clubs when any card in the UK hand could beat it.

  43. WYRM

    You may be right that May doesn’t actually table Article 50 (of the Lisbon Treaty) in March, and that she doesn’t do so until after a Catalan referendum has taken place with a Yes majority. Under such circumstances, all states will need to consider whether they would recognise the new state.

    However, such a delay seems improbable, at best.

    Your idea that the UK would be uniquely able to bring about international recognition of Catalunya seems somewhat fanciful in its idea that the UK will have much influence. Still, anything is possible.

    You are correct that I used the wrong wording in saying “Article 30”. It should have been “Section 30” (of the Scotland Act)..

  44. @CATMANJEFF

    “For what it’s worth, I would put the chances of winning as follows:
    Labour – 70%
    UKIP – 20%
    Conservative – 5 %
    Lib Dem – 5%”

    I think that’s probably a fair estimate, the bookies have it roughly 50% Lab 40% UKIP and 5%/5%.

    I certainly wouldn’t want to put any money on Stoke, there’s just too much uncertainty. Will hacked off Labour remain voters peel off and vote LD? That could swing it to UKIP if they can also get a chunk of Labour leave and crucially Tory Leave to plump for Nuttall at the same time. It’s one of the most interesting by-elections we’ve had for a while.

  45. @OLDNAT

    I’ve just checked OAG for flights to Gibraltar, and since RyanAir (Ireland registered) doesn’t fly tp GIB, no flights from the UK would be affected (Monarch, Easyjet and British Airways are all UK registered) The ECAA doesn’t affect flights to non ECAA countries, One flight a week to Morocco *might* be affected when the Euro-Mediterranean Aviation Agreement is ratified,

  46. One of those long-term benefits Brexipeeps keep telling us about…

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/02/12/brexit-migration-cuts-could-push-state-pension-age/

    “Britons may have to work longer if immigration is cut in the wake of Brexit, according to a warning from the Government’s pension adviser.

    John Cridland, a former CBI director reviewing the state pension age for the Government, said the “Brexit Factor” had made the future of the state pension uncertain.”

    “Brexit is likely to reduce the number of people of working age coming into the UK from the EU and, unless this shortfall is made up elsewhere, the UK’s old-age dependency ratio looks set to rise”

    Francois Barker, Eversheds Sutherland”

  47. Wyem

    “OLDNAT’s posting suggested followed a common “Remainer” argument that, in any negotiations, EU members can make threats without consequences, while the UK cannot. ”

    You misrepresent my post – though that is not entirely unexpected.

    Spain has not made a “threat”. It has stated that it will not entertain discussions on post-Brexit access to European Aviation space, unless Gibraltar Airport is included in the discussions.

    That is simply a statement of their position – just as the UK has made its position clear on some issues, though unfortunately not on membership of the European Common Aviation Area, or any successor arrangements.

    Hopefully, the UK negotiators are not going to take your position, which appears to be that other countries arguing for their interests has to be seen as a “threat” to the UK, and to escalate matters.

  48. Wyrm

    Whether flights actually go to Gib from the UK is irrelevant. It’s much more a matter of Air Traffic Control procedures, and allocation of flight quotas throughout the EAS.

    From the Spanish perspective, re will be no discussion of UK access to European Aviation Space, unless Gibraltar Airport is part of the discussion.

    Given that the airport is built on disputed territory, that seems a reasonable Spanish insistence.

    Why would anyone imagine that the UK is the only country that can insist that its interests are met, and that other countries doing the same thing are issuing “threats”?

  49. @Jim Jam – “Coordinated attempts to influence the political agenda through careful placing of positivity in various public fora is a well established tactics for political parties….”

    While I don’t discount that, it is rather a cynical view of UKPR posters.

    @Carfrew – indeed. As I’ve said before, we’ll have a fair few shell shocked Brexiteers once the dust settles. Migration will either fall substantially, with all the financial problems that brings, or it won’t, with all the political problems that brings. That’s what you get for four decades of l!es.

  50. Anyone know if “Google Surveys” like this one

    http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politics/britains-brexit-regret-survey-shows-9805513

    have any value?

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