ICM’s regular poll for the Guardian has topline figures of CON 44%(+2), LAB 26%(-1), LDEM 8%(-2), UKIP 13%(+1), GRN 4%(nc). The changes since the previous ICM poll aren’t significant, but it’s worth noting that the 18 point Conservative lead is ICM’s largest for many years (there was a lead of 19 points in an ICM/News of the World poll in 2009 and a 20 point lead in an ICM/Guardian poll in June 2008)

ICM also asked about the position of EU nationals in the Brexit negotiations – 42% think the British government should only guarantee the position of EU nationals in the UK once the EU guarantees the rights of British citizens in the EU; 41% think Britain should do it unilaterally straight away. There is a similarly even split on the fate of John Bercow: 30% think he should stay, 32% think he should resign. Finally they asked about Donald Trump’s visit. 18% think it should be cancelled, 37% think he should be invited but not given a full state visit, 32% think a full state visit should happen. Full tabs are here.

To catch up with some other recent voting intention polls. YouGov’s latest figures came out at the tail end of last week (though fieldwork is now a whole week ago) – topline figures were CON 40%, LAB 24%, LDEM 11%, UKIP 15% (tabs). The lead is similar to that from ICM, but with lower support for the main two parties.

Opinium also had voting intention figures in the Observer at the weekend. Over recent months Opinium have tended to be something of an outlier, showing Labour leads of seven or eight points rather than the double digit leads consistently reported by other companies. This fortnight they showed a shift towards the Conservatives, putting their figures more in line with other companies: CON 40%, LAB 27%, LDEM 8%, UKIP 14% (tabs here.)


767 Responses to “ICM/Guardian – CON 44, LAB 26, LD 8, UKIP 13”

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  1. It’s interesting to see McDonnell’s approach – wait and see how Brexit damages the Tory party and then Labour can step in, seems to be the message.

    It’s hopeless, in many ways, as Labour haven’t really set themselves up to benefit. The Lib Dems have done so – very publicly, gaining support for a principled rejection of Brexit.

    Labour – and Corbyn specifically – have backed the hard Brexit approach via a three line whip, and in doing so have lost a good deal of support from Labour remainers. Where they stand to pick up on any Tory discomfit is anyone’s guess.

    It’s at times like these where a new broom can be so very helpful. Changing the narrative, rather than specifically changing policy direction, can be extremely useful, and there is an extensive narrative to ditch at present.

    There is a great deal of ‘friendly’ criticism of Corbyn this morning, which he would do well to heed. It seems really obvious that his mission has failed. He promised to reach out to Labour’s core support and re-energise the grassroots.

    While he clearly cannot be blamed for the disconnection that has built up between the party and it’s supporters over many years, he equally has failed to close this gap. Whether this shows in Scotland, Copeland, or in a struggle to defeat a very poor UKIP candidate in Stoke, Corbyn’s vision has failed, even when judged on his own terms.

  2. Been pondering
    If as in a lot of recent by elections all parties lose votes ie non actually gained a single vote-how is it possible to deduce what movement has occurred between parties?
    Unlikely but it could all be down to differential turnout and abstention and there be no movement between them
    Not talking about these tWo results but in general I cant see how a meaningful swing can be calculated or much can be deduced about movement
    Am I being stupid?-probably!
    Can anyone explaIn?

  3. @Colin ”For socialists in the Labour Party it will be a relief that the Blairite plan to stage two electoral disasters on one night failed. Nobody can claim losing Copeland was Jeremy Corbyn’s “fault”: the fault lies with the careerist right-winger who abandoned the seat in mid-session to take a better job.” Paul Mason :-) :-) :-)

    It is laughably delusional of Mason but there you go.

    “Nothing to see here, move along!”

  4. Chris Riley

    Not sure about that. Snell was a good candidate despite late night tweetings.

    He was also campaigning on a brexit ticket. He accepted he wanted to remain but also accepted that the ref should be upheld and britain should now leave.He therefore was able to appeal to soft Brexiteers who really didnt want to vote for the Nuttall.That does not seem to me to be inconsistent with the line of JC nor TM come to think of it.

    what Stoke result would have been if Labour had adopted the liberal “principled” approach is something we will never know.It could have been a catastrophic loss and ,guess what, calls for JC to quit.

  5. Alec.

    ‘Labour – and Corbyn specifically – have backed the hard Brexit approach via a three line whip’

    I think it is unfair to label Labour voting for triggering A50 as supporting Hard Brexit. Indeed the officlal line is for a soft Brexit and Kier Starmer has been impressive imo.

    Chris Riley spells out very well above the difficulty Labour and its’ MPs face and I would agree that many LP remainers were soft remainers.

    In the end though the ‘I voted for the referendum so I should respect the result’ was too strong a narrative for most of the PLP.

  6. @S Thomas

    Yes, by all accounts Snell performed well on the stump and was a good candidate who has hopefully learned to keep his social media thoughts to himself. As I’ve mentioned before Snell also takes a stance towards Brexit that is the usual Remainer one. Actually, Labour, the Conservatives and the Lib Dems all put up good candidates here, and by the sounds of it the Copeland candidates were all of good quality as well.

    But the narrative from the Right was that his Remain stance was a liability. It doesn’t seem to have been that way and I think it’s not merely that Labour voters don’t care as much about the Leave/Remain split, it’s that the hardcore Leavers who currently dominate the narrative don’t even understand anyone could *not* care as much as they do but they’re dragging other people who should know better – like the Labour leadership – into that stance.

    Corbyn’s real underlying problem seems to be that he is badly out of touch with the wider electorate – and so are the Labour members who voted for him. That’s a serious problem for a party.

  7. @Colin – while I like much of Mason’s economic analyses, whenever he mentions the word ‘Corbyn’ his brains seem to fly out of the window.

    @Jim Jam – I think you are correct, and I mis-phrased what I was trying to say. The three line whip was unnecessary and confused many remain voters. The simple get out for Labour was to say they respect the referendum result but this was not for the hard brexit favoured by the government, and that without securing concessions from this stance Labour would either vote against or abstain. Many remainers lost faith in Corbyn at this point, in my view.

  8. @Alec “whenever he mentions the word ‘Corbyn’ his brains seem to fly out of the window.”

    Presumably all those canvas returns stating that Corbyn was seen as an electoral liability was part of this Blairite plot. It’s quite the conspiracy!

  9. I don’t know about ‘all those canvass returns’.
    In my fairly extensive canvassing Corbyn doesn’t come up a lot, and when he does it is often along the lines expressed by many on here today – good man, carp leader – and which is my view as well. I get slightly more ‘How do you expect to win with that twerp’ than ‘How do you expect to win when you don’t unite behind St Jeremy’ but they are fringe positions.
    I think the real issue is that there’s no vision to sell – same as under Ed M. Anti-austerity does not a vision make.

  10. Good morning all from a bright but rather cold Itchen Valley here in rural Hampshire.
    It feels like the morning after a GE.

    BIGFATRON
    I think, Allan Christie got it pretty much right (and you won’t hear me saying that very often!) ;-)
    ……
    THE OTHER HOWARD
    Allan Christie
    Yes, hats off to you, that was a good forecast for Copeland considering by-elections are so difficult. Well done sir!

    I got both results right but didn’t put numbers to them. :-)
    __________

    Thank you, both for the lovely compliments…I know I know I am very good at the ol forecasting malarkey. ;-)

    Ok now that my head has deflated back to its normal size, the biggest surprise of the night for me was how the Labour candidate before and after the Copeland result was sounding like as if she was standing on behalf of the governing party and lost the by-election to the opposition.

    That to me just shows what a stunning result Copeland was for the Tories. Ok it wasn’t the largest swing in by-election history but the fact the governing party gained a seat in mid-term from the opposition, a seat which has been held by the same party for decades, in itself will go down as one of the all-time great by-election results.

  11. S Thomas 9.50

    Fully agree – wish some intelligent commentators would shoot that fox that keeps saying UKIP must be dead in the water now. That they are still in the game at all after the smear campaign in Stoke against Nuttall (things he said – or rather, mostly that UKIP staff said – 5+ years ago and exaggerated and twisted out of context beyond all recognition) says something.

    Whether there’s enough of a libel case for the election to be re-run I doubt very much, but in any case if that’s what Labour have to do to hold on by their fingertips in long-held seats, it speaks volumes as well as being a turn-off.

  12. @Guymonde – “I think the real issue is that there’s no vision to sell – same as under Ed M. Anti-austerity does not a vision make.”

    To be honest, that’s what I get really frustrated about. I was pleased to see Ed M start to grope his way towards a new political analysis, but while he made some interesting noises about identifying the unerly!ng issues (now adopted by the Tories) he never really crafted a vision.

    Of all the things Corbyn could do, the vision thing was – I thought – bound to be one of his strongest points. In this, I feel he has really been a disappointment, with a painful lack of any coherent positions.

  13. While I think it may be true that UKIP will gradually decline, they did increase their share of the vote in Stoke as S Thomas pointed out.

    The BBC have been banging on all morning that UKIP are finished, but I’m not so sure. They do need to get their other policies better publicised though.

    There is a constituency of socially-conservative folk who have nowhere else to go. There are so many areas where the three traditional (English) parties agree and yet a lot of voters have different views.

  14. Pete B

    Quite. I posted this on the Stoke thread as Prof Curtice was suggesting UKIP should target Conservative voters only, quite incorrectly in my view:

    I can see John Curtice’s point, but being a ‘Leaver’ isn’t the only type of Labour supporter that UKIP can attract. There was a lot of talk in Stoke reported about ‘Labour having done nothing for us all these years’ and I am fairly sure that Nuttall would have won had the campaign not turned very publicly away from Snell’s tweets etc. and against Nuttall on a national as well as local scale.

    There is still a market for UKIP – there were ‘special’ reasons (admittedly UKIP do attract those :) ) whey they didn’t progress much further at Stoke.

  15. @Chris Riley

    Re: young voters in traditionally Labour areas. Very good post. For a while I have thought that the most important political divide is a generational one, and that events only continue to surprise those who ignore this and expect past events to be any kind of predictor of the future.

    “These were articulate, politically engaged young people who think the entire system is bent to purposes inimical to them in a way I’ve not seen with other groups.”

    Question one would be: ‘Well, are they right?’ It used to amuse me to predict policy decisions (from any of the main parties) by asking the question: ‘Which option would result in the beneficiaries being older than those who would suffer?’ You could use this metric to accurately predict over 95% of policy decisions. I stopped playing that game, it got too depressing.

    We are currently languishing in the ninth year of “extraordinary” interest rates which exist only to protect various asset bubbles to the detriment of those with none to start with.

  16. New thread

  17. @PNG
    “Taking the two by-elections into account together, the Conservatives retained 89% of their vote at the 2015 general election whereas Labour retained only 67%. This would translate into a Conservative national poll figure of 42.6% and Labour of 26.5% much in line with recent opinion polls.”

    The LibDems however, actually increased their vote totals – unusually for by-elections, with their notoriously low turnouts. In the language of the above paragraph, that’s equivalent to retaining ALL of their 2015 vote, and adding some.

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