ICM’s regular poll for the Guardian has topline figures of CON 45%(+1), LAB 26%(-2), LDEM 9%(+1), UKIP 10%(-1), GRN 4%(-1). Another post-budget poll showing the Conservative poll lead holding strong – despite all the fuss and the government U-turn, it does not appear to have had any negative impact on voting intention. ICM still have UKIP holding onto third place, but only by the skin of their teeth.

The poll aslso asked about the best team on the economy, with May & Hammond recording a 33 point lead over Corbyn & McDonnell (44% to 11%) and whether each party was honest or dishonest. Every party was seen as more dishonest than honest, but the Conservatives were the least bad: 19% thought the Tories were honest, 26% dishonest (a net score of minus 7), 13% thought Labour were honest, 24% dishonest (net score of minus 11), 11% thought the Lib Dems honest, 25% dishonest (net minus 14), 8% thought UKIP honest, 38% dishonest (minus 30).

653 Responses to “ICM/Guardian – CON 45, LAB 26, LDEM 9, UKIP 10”

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  1. @Candy

    Mark Field is the MP for Cities of London and Westminster which includes the whole of the City of London.

  2. @ Alec

    I got my data from http://www.tradingeconomics.com/ and was looking at the GDP growth data year-on-year. The quarter-on-quarter data looks a little better than the y-o-y data for central Europe, but not by much. The whether you look at y-o-y or q-o-q, Ireland and Eastern Europe are still the best performing economies.

  3. @Candy

    To clarify, I’m with you that the Remembrancer shouldn’t have such broad lobbying privileges but that in no way affects the sovereignty of Parliament.

  4. Carswell going Indy is no surprise.

    I wonder how long the rump of UKIPs in the Welsh Assembly will hold out.

    The Tories must be thinking election? Things will not get better for them over the next 3years? Corbyn is the gift horse that keeps giving, but surely he won’t be there in 2020?

  5. @Jones in Bangor

    It probably depends on how many of the Welsh Kippers relate more to Carswell or Farage. If the latter, they’re likely to stay put.

  6. @Candy – “The City uniquely doesn’t return an MP to Parliament – it and it’s citizens do not take part in general elections. ”

    You can really be a bit of a numpty sometimes, but you always have to option of actually looking for evidence, rather than digging a deeper and deeper hole.

    Apart from other posting about the Cities of London and Westminster constituency, for which there is a sitting MP, which rather destroys your argument, you could read this from Wiki:

    “During the course of the 19th and 20th centuries the metropolitan area of London expanded enormously. The resident population of the City fell as people moved to the new suburbs. However the City authorities did not want to extend their jurisdiction beyond the traditional “square mile”, so the Parliamentary constituency was left unchanged as its resident population fell. By the 20th century almost all electors in the City qualified as business voters, due to the ownership of shop or office premises in the City. The business voters were a type of plural voter so when that voting qualification was abolished by the Representation of the People Act 1948 the City had far too few voters to remain a Parliamentary constituency.

    In 1950 the area was merged for Parliamentary purposes with the neighbouring City of Westminster, to form a new single-member constituency of Cities of London and Westminster.”

    So, while everyone agrees that the city of London has influence and that Remembrancer is a sign of this, the evidence is clear that the City Corporation cannot exempt itself from laws unless parliament agrees to this, residents living in the City really do vote in UK general elections, and Poland does not have 27 votes in the European Council.

  7. And storage taxes are rubbish…

  8. @Syzygy

    Very unlike Col. to duck a debate and this ‘vast body of opinion’ old Col is pitting you against is left rather vague, but then a lot of it proved to be hot air. QE worked, it saved the banking system, provided a stimulus and made it easier for the government to sell some debt, without stoking the rampant inflation others scaremongered about.

    It might have been improved upon, seeking to avoid inflating house prices etc. But still…

  9. “The Tories must be thinking election? Things will not get better for them over the next 3years? Corbyn is the gift horse that keeps giving, but surely he won’t be there in 2020?”

    If I was TM ( and sometimes I dream of exactly that) my thinking would be that JC will stay until 2020 and will deliver the most almighty Tory majority.She would then have another 5 years or so where she could do almost what she liked. What’s not to like from her perspective and er… what could possibly go wrong?

  10. @Carfrew – “And storage taxes are rubbish…”

    Well you could always give yourself 27 votes and then excempt yourself from acts of parliament and then you could do what you want about them.

  11. @Candy “Every single law that is passed will have a mention of the City in it”
    I’ve just had a look at European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Act 2017.
    It’s nice and short, but I didn’t see the City of London mentioned.

  12. @Alec

    “Well you could always give yourself 27 votes and then excempt yourself from acts of parliament and then you could do what you want about them.”


    Has an appeal but unfortunately I don’t even vote once, let alone 27 times…

  13. Candy 12.46 a.m. et al

    re: ‘the English inventing Parliament,’

    Contrary to what several people seem to think, Westminster is NOT ‘the mother of all parliaments’, although it is, undoubtedly ‘the mother of (many) parliaments’.

    The Parliaments of Iceland, Man and, until Garibaldi came along and abolished it, Palermo all predate the Westminster version by at least two centuries. Notice the common Viking theme to the places I mentioned. The Vikings were democrats, at least among themselves, long before the English got hold of the idea.

    Regarding the Scots, to which Candy alluded in a typically dismissive way, I think readers will find that many if not all of the Highland clans had what might be called ‘mini parliaments’ to elect Clan Chiefs and discuss clan policy, but these were on the lines of the Native Americans having a meeting of the tribal chiefs.

    As for how far back we can go in order to find Scottish parliaments, Michael Brown (‘The Wars of Scotland’, Edinburgh 2004, p.33) notes that the term ‘Colloquium’ (which means the same as ‘parliament’ and had the same function as parliaments in the south) can be traced back until at least 1235, so clearly prior to the inventing of the House of Commons in 1295, though probably not as far back as the gathering of the Franco-Norman-English nobility which, I think can be traced back to Great Councils called during the Norman times (again, with their viking background this is hardly surprising.)

    I hope that helps.

  14. Seachange 8.04 a.m.

    The Commons is the oldest operating Parliament in the world.

    I think you’ll find the House of Lords predates the Commons by a century or two!

    And what of Man? As far as I know the Tingwall has never been interrupted in its well over one thousand year history. The Commons are really quite recent in comparison!

  15. Thank you, John B.

  16. Pete B


    Sadly, you are correct. That comment to you was not my finest moment!

    Sincere apology tendered.

  17. “Britain Elects” – which has provided a useful service in tweeting election results – has finally got its website up and running.

    Whether its political analysis is up to their standard of results reporting remains to be seen.

    Their first article is on the council elections in Wales, and those with more knowledge of Welsh politics may be able to comment on how useful the analysis is.


  18. ON
    “Sincere apology tendered.”

    Accepted. I hope we can resume friendly banter at an appropriate time. :-)

  19. Old Nat

    In the Montgomeryshire part of Powys about a third of councillors were returned unopposed in 2012. From what I have heard this time the Tories and Lib Dems will be contesting more seats. I think the Lib Dems only contested half a dozen last time and the t\ories about twice as many out of 34. The controlling Independents are actually a coalition of 3 “independent ” groups.

  20. Pete B

    “appropriate time”

    I hope you are not just repeating May’s mantra of “Now is not the time” – else we’ll never communicate! :-)

  21. :-)

    I just meant when an opportunity arises naturally during debate.



    As happens elsewhere, “Independent” can cover a multitude of political attitudes, and I presume Wales is the same..

    Does the Britain Elects analysis seem a fair one, do you think?

  23. Looking at the tables for the YG poll of 20-21 March, I saw that the North of England was showing a 4 point lead (36:32) of Con over Lab.


    We all know that geographic crossbreaks aren’t great evidence, but has this been common previously? or so rare that its an obvious outlier?

    Geographic crossbreaks don’t tell us a lot (unless confirmed by proper polling) but a consistent pattern tells us something.

    So do the North of England crossbreaks tell us something?

    For comparison the Scots crossbreak seems a bit strong for SNP at 54%, and the Con lead over Lab down to 1% (19:18) – neither of which seems likely when compared with other evidence.

  24. “I just meant when an opportunity arises naturally during debate.”


    Negotiating when to banter… It’s so civilised on UKPR!!…

  25. Bit scary…

    “Researchers studying the largest-ever mass extinction in Earth’s history claim to have found evidence that it was caused by runaway global warming – and that the “apocalyptic” events of 250 million years ago could happen again.”


    “About 90 per cent of all the living things on the planet were wiped out in the Permian mass extinction – described in a 2005 book called When Life Nearly Died – for reasons that have been long debated by scientists.

    According to a paper published in the journal Palaeoworld, volcanic eruptions pumped large amounts of carbon dioxide into the air, causing average temperatures to rise by eight to 11°C.

    This melted vast amounts of methane that had been trapped in the permafrost and sea floor, causing temperatures to soar even further to levels “lethal to most life on land and in the oceans”.

    “Based on measurements of gases trapped in [the mineral] calcite, the release of methane … is deemed the ultimate source and cause for the dramatic life-changing global warming … observed at the end Permian.

    “The emission of carbon dioxide from volcanic deposits may have started the world onto the road of mass extinction, but it was the release of methane from shelf sediments and permafrost hydrates that was the ultimate cause for the catastrophic biotic event at the end Permian,” the researchers added.

    And Professor Tim Palmer, an Oxford University physicist who has worked on the IPCC reports, said it was unclear what future humanity was facing.

    “The relevance of such apocalyptic scenarios for the present climate-change debate depends on cloud feedbacks being significantly and substantially positive,” he told The Independent.

    “Without them we will probably not warm enough for these releases of methane to occur – another reason to do our utmost to try to understand such cloud feedbacks.”

    However, Professor Palmer said computer models which accurately simulated the Earth’s climate suggested it was more likely that humanity was on course for global warming at levels considered to produce particularly dangerous weather conditions.”

  26. On the plus side…

    “Germany converting a huge coal mine into giant renewable battery
    Water will flow down through the mine powering turbines”


  27. @ MILLIE

    I agree that the betting markets have some relevance in setting the tone of media coverage of campaigns, tho being very small markets they tend to also move very fast in reflection of developments in media coverage, as betting by local journalists and campaign staff alone will be enough to move the prices around significantly.

    Also, fractional odds can be misleading on a one-winner contest… a drop from 8/1 to 6/1 means the market thinks the chance of winning has shifted from 11% to 14% – proportionally an impressive improvement, but hardly something that would change the way you’d behave in regard to a one-off event, it’s still basically “will I roll a 6?” territory.

  28. Carfrew
    So the volcanic eruptions are supposed to have raised global temperatures by 8° to 11° C before the methane became a problem I believe the latest computer models are predicting some thing like a 2° rise in the next 100 years. So, no problem?

    I have worked on the Met Office’s climate model a bit some years ago (and various other predictive models in other fields). Though I’m sure the models have been refined since I worked on them, one thing doesn’t change. A small tweak to initial parameters or formulae can have a very large effect when projecting forward 100 years. For instance, say that for a given ocean surface temperature your formula says that 60% cloud cover is produced by evaporation. If this is then altered to 59% or 61% in light of observations, it could have a large effect when projected forward 100 years, because of difference in sunlight reflected by that amount of cloud.

    There are probably hundreds of other factors built into these models and they are changing all the time. I would have more faith if they occasionally published results such as “we have taken all the known figures from (say) 1970 and fed them into our climate model. It has accurately predicted global average temperature to within 1° C for every year since then”. I’ve never heard that. If someone can point me to some such publication I’ll happily reconsider. Until then I’m sceptical.

    If they’re right we’ll all just have to move to Antarctica or Northern Canada or somewhere similar.
    “Negotiating when to banter… It’s so civilised on UKPR!!…”

    Well, sometimes!

  29. Pete B

    “If they’re right we’ll all just have to move to Antarctica or Northern Canada or somewhere similar.”

    But what if those living in Northern Canada don’t want uncontrolled immigration from those fleeing disaster in their countries of birth?

    They might want to preserve their own favourable conditions instead of extending the hand of friendship and common humanity.

  30. @Oldnat

    I have data from YG polls from July 2016 to the 12th Feb this year, and the Conservatives have led Labour in the North as follows:

    19th Oct 16 – Con 38 Lab 36
    31st Oct 16 – Con 38 Lab 36
    9th Jan 17 – Con 36 Lab 33
    5th Feb 17 – Con 34 Lab 31

    Based on that, I would not read anything too much into the cross break, unless as you have correctly identified, there is a long term pattern evolving.

  31. ON
    We’ll just invade, obviously. The penguins in Antarctica might be easier to take on though, especially if they’re dying of heat exhaustion.

  32. CMJ
    Surely those figures show a consistent Tory lead in the North of England which is a bit counter-intuitive. One expects the land of whippets and clogs to be mainly Labour.

    G’night all.

  33. @Pete B

    That’s four data points out of twenty seven.

    Of the other the vast majority are Labour leads.

    The data points posted are just the Tory leads.

  34. CMJ

    Thanks for the data – as you say, one should never read too much into crossbreaks.

    Has any pollster has bothered to run proper polling in any of the English regions outwith London?

    I suspect any such would be an academic exercise, since it seems unlikely that the London based press would have any interest in those results.

  35. @John B

    There is no doubt that Parliaments were started in other countries before the English, however, all of the earliest ones fell into disuse or are no longer extant. People cite Iceland’s Althing. It wasn’t a legislature for almost 500 years. It was reconstituted in 1844 and only became a primary legislature in the 20th Century.

    Re: Tingwall: I assume you are talking The Tynwald – no conclusive evidence that it existed pre-dating the Mann Chronicles in the 14th Century. That’s not to say it didn’t exist of course.

    The first English Parliament is generally accepted as De Montfort’s in 1265, as it also included commoners who were not knights of the shire. Before that, gatherings were usually an expanded version of the Royal Court. The House of Lords came into being at a later date.

  36. Apparently the Sunday Politics is, yet again, giving a spot to a party with zero MPs.

    Should Andrew Neil be investigated for necrophilia? Does BBC London politics have an unhealthy obsession with the dead, or are they just indulging in archaic rites celebrating the ancestors?

    Will the Fourth of May result in the ritual slaughter of failed party leaders? After being force fed a ritual feed of drugged berries, will they be deposited in sacred pools to satiate the blood lust of the Brexit gods?

    Channel 4’s Time Team has a rare opportunity to examine archaeology in action!

  37. Sea Change

    I agree with you that Westminster is probably the longest continuously existing (give a revolution or two) for a single realm.

    Of course, that realm expanded a bit to incorporate the conquered territory of Wales in 1282, though I don’t think there was much Welsh representation in Westminster Hall for a few yeas after that.

    Just think, how that tradition might have continued if you hadn’t united with the Scots in 1707 and the Irish in 1801 (till most of the latter left in 1923)

    Alas, that long tradition of an English Parliament ended in 1707. Now all that you are left with is that the successor Parliaments use the same site – though not even the same buildings.

    Still, if you play your cards right, you can restore Westminster to being an English Parliament again – though the intervening gap of 300 years plus, does remove any claim of continuity.

  38. @OLDNAT


    The Scots have formed part of Parliament before 1707. Scottish members sat as early as 1292 actually.

    Remember we are four nations but one people!

    The Act of Union 1707 created seats in Parliament for the Scottish.

    Parliament continued.

  39. Sea Change

    “Scottish members sat as early as 1292 actually”

    Actually, they didn’t. Many lords held lands in both kingdoms..Those sitting in the English Parliament did so because of their English lands.

    You might equally claim that “the French” sat in your Parliament too, as medieval land holdings weren’t very geographically restricted! Representation in Parliament depended on holding land from the English Crown that that the English king could tax.

    It wasn’t until the 19th century that the UK Parliament was considered to represent “the people” resident within a geographic area.

    Prior to that, Parliament represented “interests”, so buying a pocket borough to ensure that West Indian sugar interests were represented was constitutionally proper. On your argument, that would mean that Trinidadians were represented in the 18th century Westminster Parliament.

    Of course, politically, I’m quite happy for you to propagate the English Nationalist view, that the Unions of 1707 and 1801 were simply the creation of a Greater England.

    That is in contradistinction to the British/UK Nationalist myth that a new Parliament representing all the partners in a Union was created.

    Myths are essential in creating “a nation”, and the dominance of the English myth really screwed the British one!

    Hence why your repetition of May’s mantra simply merges her ignorance and yours.

  40. @Catmanjeff

    Thanks for the figures. That is grim for Labour. We’d have to go back to the 1950s I’d guess to find a comparable time?


    The general scientific consensus is the Permian extinction was caused by the Siberian Traps eruption. It was the mass poisoning of the biosphere with the toxic ash that did in 90% of life and the heating of the oceans above 40 Degrees at the equator from as much as 4 million cubic kilometres of lava.

  41. @OLDNAT

    in 1707 the Scottish Parliament was abolished. 45 Scots were added to the 513 MPs of the House of Commons and 16 Scots to the House of Lords. Parliament continued uninterrupted with all the previous traditions.

    And that is not May’s mantra. That chant has been sung at Lions games for as long as I can remember, Brother.

  42. @Pete B – “There are probably hundreds of other factors built into these models and they are changing all the time. I would have more faith if they occasionally published results such as “we have taken all the known figures from (say) 1970 and fed them into our climate model. It has accurately predicted global average temperature to within 1° C for every year since then”. I’ve never heard that. If someone can point me to some such publication I’ll happily reconsider. Until then I’m sceptical.”

    Well this is precisely what they have been doing for several decades, with some remarkable findings. To be honest, this is why the skepticism of climate change is so frustrating – it was predicted over a century ago, atmospheric CO2 levels starting to be regularly measured in a comparable series sixty years, global temperatures were found to be rising fifty years ago, and the rate of rise and many other intertwines factors arising from this have been repeatedly matched to predictions, although the hindcasting isn’t always completely accurate as the models are evolving.

    For example, if you look at the PCC Third Assessment from 2010, you can see plots of IPCC projections for sea level rise, against tide gauge readings (from 1970) and satellite measurements (from 1992). Both sets of data track the IPCC projections with uncanny accuracy, although unfortunely they track the very upper level of the IPCC range.

    Similarly measurements of Artic sea ice are matching prediction, again on the worse side, although here there is more year to year variation so the actual measurements tend to be more lump, but the trend matches prediction.

    The global temperature is the obvious one however, where the results match closely the predictions, apart from some short term variations which are seized upon by skeptics.

    The long term trend is clear, the predictions have been remarkably accurate, and the mechanism is scientifically sound and very well understood, with only the details of feedback and spin off events needing to be further tied down.

    I really can’t understand why anyone would remain a skeptic.

  43. @Pete B – with regard to publishing hindcasting, I just think you’ve missed the bus. With climate change there has been lots of it, and it has been getting increasingly accurate.

    What I would say though, is that there is a general problem is scientific publication around the issue of publishing negative results. Publishers and funders are less interested in negative results (something that is a serious problem in medical research, but also affects other areas of study) so it’s likely that there are negative hindcasts that don’t see the light of published day, just to balance things up a little.

    However, this doesn’t alter the basic fact that climate change is a well proven theory.

  44. Who the hell cares whether Westminster is the oldest parliament or oldest operating parliament? Does it matter? In medieval times only rich landowners (i.e. the nobility) had any say in such matters anyway. 98% or more of the population had no say in anything.
    What only matters now is the current world we are in.

  45. Carswell is just a Tory rebel who jumped on the UKIP bandwagon to promote Brexit. He never gave a stuff about UKIP to start with. Then again, I’m struggling to see what UKIP stands for now – once Brexit negotiations are complete UKIP will simply dissolve like snow in the sun.

  46. Old Nat :

    The summary of the Wales locals seems pretty fair to me. I would expect little progress, if any, for UKIP as I have heard nothing about candidates in my Brexit-favouring area. Labour, after very good results last time, must be expecting to lose quite a few seats in Cardiff – it would not surprise me if the Lib Dems picked up a few in Cardiff Central and the Tories in the suburbs. There is some backing for Plaid Cymru there as well. PC will pick up seats in some of the valleys. With the Tories planning a bigger campaign this time (see Con Home articles recently re Powys and Monmouthshire) independents could lose some in rural areas.


    “Who the hell cares whether Westminster is the oldest parliament…”

    Everyone who can’t bear to give any credit at all to anything associated with the English?

  48. @ Carfew

    ‘“Germany converting a huge coal mine into giant renewable battery
    Water will flow down through the mine powering turbines”

    Good to see. There must be innumerable opportunities for more such. I liked the idea of using old ocean going liners… pump in sea water during low demand and release back into the sea through powering turbines as required.

    Mind, my favourite has to be growing trees as a carbon fixing crop and then burying deep in old coal mines :)

  49. @SYZYGY “Mind, my favourite has to be growing trees as a carbon fixing crop and then burying deep in old coal mines :)”

    Nice one :)

  50. @David Colby

    The thing is what do you mean by ‘English’?

    The current configuration? Before unification with Scotland and Wales? Anglo-Saxon England? Roman England?

    It’s really quite meaningless who precisely had the first parliament, and the particular artificial boundaries present at that time.

    All humans share the third rock from sun!


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