ICM’s regular poll for the Guardian is out today and has topline figures of CON 43%(-2), LAB 25%(-1), LDEM 11%(+2), UKIP 11%(+1), GRN 4%(nc). The 25% for Labour equals the lowest in the ICM/Guardian series of polls, previously reached during the nadir of Gordon Brown’s government in 2009.

Looking ahead to the Brexit negotiations ICM also tested out some of the compromises that Theresa May may have to make in the years ahead:

  • By 48% to 28% people said they would be happy to give EU citizens preferential treatment compared to non-EU nationals when coming to work in Britain
  • People were also happy to accept, by 54% to 29%, continued freedom of movement during a transitional period
  • By 47% to 34% people said it would be not be acceptable to continue to follow ECJ rulings during a transititonal period (though given the widespread confusion between the European Court and European Court of Human Rights I do ponder how mant thought this was a human rights question)
  • The trickiest bits were, however, on spending – all three different financial settlements that ICM tested were rejected by the public: only 33% thought it would be acceptable to pay a £3bn “exit fee”, only 15% thought a £10bn fee would be acceptable, only 10% thought a £20bn “exit fee” would be acceptable. How and if the government manage to sell the financial settlement part of Brexit to the public is going to be interesting…

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759 Responses to “ICM/Guardian – CON 43, LAB 25, LDEM 11, UKIP 11”

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  1. From the Independent…

    “The vast majority of Britons want to maintain or increase the numbers of foreign students coming to the UK because of the multibillion-pound boost they give to the economy, increasing pressure on Theresa May to stop including them in immigration figures.

    Almost half the public back the current numbers of international students coming to the UK each year, when they are told of the economic benefits, while a further 24 per cent of people want to increase the figure, the findings of a ComRes poll reveal.

    Just one in four people regard foreign students as “immigrants”, even though they are currently counted in the net migration figures that the Government has vowed to slash to tens of thousands a year.

    The policy has been blamed for a drive by the Home Office to tighten the rules governing student visas, with foreign students currently classed as long-term migrants. The Independent and the Open Britain group are running a Drop the Target campaign calling for the goal to be scrapped.”

    A related issue is that of extended stay through a visa system which permits entry into the work force. Advocates, including in the Scottish Government, see this as an added economic benefit, keeping the skills which are acquired. The system as at present framed and implemented permits relatively substantial employment of students in part-time employment during study periods, and full-time employment during study vacations. In some professions it embraces work experiences as part of the study or training process, and there is widespread part-time employment of those currently studying (not least Bulgarian and Australian students serving Bulgarian standard coffee – see earlier exchanges on this site).
    The present regulations for work permits and work experience permit extensions of residence visas in specific professions and circumstances, usually for a limited period /www.soas.ac.uk/studentadviceandwellbeing/students/…/ukcisa/ Providing for entry into the long-term work force and citizenship would add value to the existing skills and demographic benefits of immigration.

  3. @Charles

    ‘Not sure about that, Why do populous cities tend to vote labour (leastways in the past) and remain while the countryside which does not feel overcrowded to me has tended to vote conservative and leave?’

    I suspect the answer is quite simple: people living in cities probably prefer to do so. Those of us in the countryside probably don’t want to.

    Where I live, in a rural area, population is predicted to grow by 40% in 15 years. But hospitals are closing, school budgets are cut, and no new roads are planned. Imagine if London was predicted to grow by 4 million over the same period, with no improvements in infrastructure.

    “Where I live, in a rural area, population is predicted to grow by 40% in 15 years.”
    That’s three governments. Don’t give up.


    “I suspect we might enjoy each other’s bookshelves”

    Indeed we might, at least some of each others books. Having been taught history the standard English way in the 50’s I have spent a lot of time broadening my views by reading conflicting accounts of periods of interest.

    Getting back to Sellars & Yatemen do you think that we are undergoing yet more “waves of immigrants” and is Brexit a”Good thing” or “Bad thing”? Write on both sides of the paper at the same time.

    Have a good day.


  6. Going back to Edge of Reason above:
    Are there any polls on election of Regional Mayors in England?

    Going further back to Pete B and the problems of getting lorries at Dover and other places through customs once we leave the EU:
    The question was asked concerning how best to ensure the continuing rapid flow of goods. One obvious answer is: stay in the EU!
    But I doubt anyone on the Brexit side is listening to common sense.

  7. “Are there any polls on election of Regional Mayors in England?”

    Nope, I haven’t seen any published ones.

  8. Carfrew –

    The key phrase in that write up is “when they are told of the economic benefits”.

    In other words “after a series of statements about how beneficial x is, people said they supported x”.

    No sh*t they did! Ironically enough, however, the public genuinely are fairly relaxed about student immigration – there were MORI and YouGov polls earlier this year showing the same pattern without questions pushing people in that direction.

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