The YouGov/Sunday Times poll this morning has topline voting intention figures of CON 49%, LAB 31%, LDEM 9%, UKIP 3%. As with most other recent polls, it shows a very large Conservative lead, Labour creeping up slightly and the smaller parties being squeezed. This is the first time YouGov have shown the Lib Dems in single figures this year and the first time UKIP have been as low as 3% since early 2012.

Labour’s manifesto promises are, once again, individually popular, but overall the party’s platform is not. 65% thought a cap on rents was a good idea, 58% increasing taxes on those earning over £80,000, 49% the abolition of tuition fees, 46% the nationalisation of the National Grid, Royal Mail and railways. Asked about their policy offering overall however, by 50% to 25% people think Labour do not have a sensible plan for how they would run Britain.

By 59% to 22% people support the Conservatives’ aim of cutting net immigration to the “tens of thousands”. While a clear majority, this is substantially down from when we asked the same question in 2014 when 76% supported it. Only 25% of people thought that May would be able to hit the target, though again, it has changed significantly from 2014 when only 9% thought that Cameron could do it. By 59% to 28% people do NOT think that students should be included in the immigration target.

Finally, in the light of the CPS decisions this week there were some questions about limits on election spending. 77% of people think that there should be a spending limit at elections, and the Conservative party are perceived as being worse than the other parties at obeying the rules. 44% think the Tories often break spending rules at elections, compared to 24% for Labour, 19% for the Lib Dems, 24% for UKIP.

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409 Responses to “YouGov/Sunday Times – CON 49, LAB 31, LD 9, UKIP 3”

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  1. David West,
    ” I accept that there are many who would prefer a re-run but they ain’t going to get one”

    ‘Events, my dear boy, events’. Should be engraved alongside that other universal truth, ‘its the economy, stupid’

  2. @Danny,

    No, that is 25% of will vote who want to stop Brexit
    vs 50% of will vote who want Brexit to happen as soon as possible, and 25% who want to move on.

    Regarding turnout, the majority of people wanting to overturn Brexit are under 35 years old, and traditionally don’t vote, and in that survey say they are less likely to vote.

    But on the other hand it is the DE social demographic who are the highest “wanting Brexit to happen as soon as possible” and they also traditionally don’t vote, and in that survey say they are less likely to vote

    So the size of the Tory victory will depend who if anyone gets those reluctant voters to the polling station. I remember Amber mocking me in the past saying there is simply no way to get those DE’s out of the house, and with a teenager in the family, I doubt I could disengage her from her phone long enough to travel down to the polling station.

    So good luck to all the canvassers getting their reluctant voters to the polling station.

  3. CARFREW @Paul
    (You’ll note they didn’t join forces with Tories in the EU ref…)

    Actually all 5 local leaders of the parties represented in Holyrood did just that, campaigning for remain.

  4. @Barba

    Lol, I know they supported Remain, but they didn’t have a proper joint campaign a la “Better Together”

  5. CARFIE @ BZ

    But they all supported the official remain campaign, appearing together on a number of broadcast programmes.

  6. Just I’d just like to dispel the myth that all under 35’s voted remain… I’m 33 and voted Leave… As did my younger brother and friends.

    And if there was a other vote – I’d vote leave again.

  7. @Barba

    Yes, that isn’t in dispute. If you can’t tell the difference between supporting a policy and sharing a co-ordinated campaign, you can always ask Couper et al about it seeing as it was their idea…

  8. @RO27

    Of course not 100% of any demographic voted one way, but we can look at how MOST people in certain demographics voted

    Look at page 9 here

    http://lordashcroftpolls.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/2017_GE_Survey-Final-tables.pdf

    With a 40000 sample, the cross breaks become more reliable, and you can see a clear age difference and social class difference and regional difference between those who voted remain vs leave.

  9. Correction – another*

  10. @Barba

    I should add, happening to be in a studio at the same time isn’t exactly a co-ordinated campaign. Even opponents do that…

  11. “Of course not 100% of any demographic voted one way…”

    ——-

    Indeed. You’re being treated to the Sunday evening quibblefest…

  12. @RICHARD

    I agree and thank you for the link.

    I also feel there are a lot of Vote Remain voters who did so because of Cameron / Osborne’s ‘Project Fear’ threats. Which did not come to fruit.

    So I’d imagine a percentage of these now would most likely back Leave now or if not, simply wish the government to get on with Brexit…. Decision is made in many eyes.

    The appetite for a Second EU Ref is only there with Hardcore Remainers… The 48% will be a lot lower now and I think the Lib Dem polling confirms this.

  13. @Carfrew, TheSheep

    Graduate earnings and the premium for university education are amongst the most studied fields in education.

    That graduates earn more than non-graduates is not remotely controversial. Anyone claiming differently can be ignored, no matter what excuses you come up with about how now is different. It also looks as if the UK graduate premium is pretty high in international comparisons. But the field is a lot more difficult to examine than it appears.

    Firstly almost all commentators in the field have degrees themselves. They are aware that graduates had a difficult time of it during the recession. They do not get that everyone else had a far worse time. This means that media commentators – and policy people – are predisposed to their own biases and underreport the bulk of solid work in the field because it mostly shows uncontroversial data that doesn’t allow mid-market broadsheets to run features with photogenic 20something graduates looking dolefully at the camera and explaining how they can’t get a job. Almost all graduates do get jobs.

    Secondly, getting on towards half the working population now holds a degree (*not the population itself* – because you are rather more likely to have a job if you have a degree) and it looks like in some cases the question is less of a ‘degree premium’ and more about there being a penalty for not having a degree. This stems from the very worrying social issue that by and large in the last decade the UK has created 2 kinds of job – well-paid professional jobs (and an awful lot of them as well) and poorly paid, insecure, low skilled roles (and not as many). The middle range of reasonably jobs you don’t need a degree for has been lost in very large numbers – *and continues to be lost*. Austerity is a significant driving factor here as a lot were decent admin roles in the public sector in provincial towns. The hypothesis that the existence of these roles crowded out private sector employment has been comprehensively and tragically falsified. This also means that for many graduates it is quite likely that in the last few years the earning premium has increased, possibly significantly.

    As an aside we are probably less than a decade from the point where half the national workforce has a degree or equivalent qualification. We’re already at that point in many large cities. Needless to say this ought to make the conversation about universities a little different.

    A third issue is that earnings data for much into people’s careers is patchy at best. We have an excellent ASHE survey but when you get much past the age of 45 the number of graduates in the sample gets low. This makes career comparisons difficult, and also means we’re particularly short of information about career progression.

    A fourth issue is that dependent variables are not as easy as they could be to work out. Things that appear to have a bearing on earnings include geography (very significantly – to the extent that national figures may not be useful – how much should anyone care if a graduate with a decent job in Preston might not earn as much as a non-graduate in London? . One in six of the working population works in London, though, so the capital makes a right old mess of this kind of work), gender, race and various forms of social capital which are next to impossible to measure in a way that allows a really robust statistical analysis.

    And the fifth issue is that hardly anyone goes to university just to maximise their earnings and we shouldn’t treat the whole university system and the people who use it as if that’s it’s main or only purpose. What we really ought to be doing better is working out what value universities provide to individuals and to society and working out how to maximise that. Instead this sterile debate plays on to try to measure something that can’t be properly measured to convince people who won’t be convinced even if we did measure it.

  14. NICKP

    “CPFC absolutely tonked Hull and are staying up.
    Phew.
    Now if only the Labour party had Zaha on the wing. . .”

    Surely, as a right winger, Zaha would be a poor fit for Labour . . ?

  15. I came across this Lord Ashcroft post on Twitter… may make some laugh. Sums up where Labour are heading I thought.

    https://www.twitter.com/LordAshcroft/status/860513967659208704

  16. CARFREW
    I should add, happening to be in a studio at the same time isn’t exactly a co-ordinated campaign.

    Agreed, but when they were sharing a platform specifically to persuade people to vote remain it is hard to argue that it was not pretty close to being co-ordinated. However, feel free to continue the quibblefest, as you aptly put it.

  17. Morfsky

    “Surely, as a right winger, Zaha would be a poor fit for Labour . . ?”

    Indeed. If he was a Lab MP he would play as a “moderate” – no matter if he was constantly playing on the touchline furthest away from the left one.

  18. @Chris Riley

    “Anyone claiming differently can be ignored, no matter what excuses you come up with about how now is different”

    ———

    No they can’t! If graduates are earning less of a premium, while they have these tuition debts they didn’t used to have, then you have to offset the earnings gain against the rising costs.

    Especially now the loan book has been sold off and they’re upping the interest rates on the debt. How much more will it get upped?

    (I won’t say that anyone who doesn’t take this sort of thing into account can be ignored because that would be rude and unhelpful)…

  19. @Barba

    “Agreed, but when they were sharing a platform specifically to persuade people to vote remain it is hard to argue that it was not pretty close to being co-ordinated. However, feel free to continue the quibblefest, as you aptly put it.”

    ——–

    No, that’s just agreeing on a policy. It’s not sharing a campaign platform.

    Like, Corbyn and Theresa both agree to keep the NHS, but they’re not campaigning together.

  20. Richard,
    “No, that is 25% of will vote who want to stop Brexit
    vs 50% of will vote who want Brexit to happen as soon as possible, and 25% who want to move on. ”

    Where does it say that? It appears to say ‘all respondents; ie uncorrected.

    I can see that the proportions of labour and conservative voters claiming to be leave or remains are different to the last yougov poll, which had the parties more divided on Brexit. This is an anomaly.

  21. @Chris Riley

    “Austerity is a significant driving factor here as a lot were decent admin roles in the public sector in provincial towns. The hypothesis that the existence of these roles crowded out private sector employment has been comprehensively and tragically falsified. This also means that for many graduates it is quite likely that in the last few years the earning premium has increased, possibly significantly.”

    ———

    I could introduce you to quite a lot of recent graduates who work in coffee shops and bars because of the lack of traditional career paths. Cuts as you say demised a number of career paths, for eggers in one local, several environmental scientists who lost their career paths in the cuts.

  22. “Gap between graduate and non-graduate wages ‘shows signs of waning’
    IFS says substantial difference in earnings is likely to decrease in future as more people pursue higher education”

    https://www.theguardian.com/education/2016/aug/18/gap-between-graduate-and-non-graduate-wages-shows-signs-of-waning

  23. “You’re probably not earning that “graduate premium” you were told about”

    http://www.cityam.com/246526/youre-probably-not-earning-graduate-premium-you-were-told

    “Young people entering higher education to boost their future earnings are in for a shock, according to new research, which claims the idea of an earnings premium for graduates has become a myth.

    “Any politician or policy-maker who dangles the carrot of an average lifetime earnings premium should be challenged for gross mis-selling,” said co-founder of the Intergenerational Foundation think tank Angus Hanton.

    “Our research proves that the current £100,000 graduate earnings premium so often touted equates to an ‘annual bonus’ of just £2,222 over 45 years of work, and is wiped out once National Insurance and Income Tax are taken into account.

    “Furthermore, the premium is simply not enough to cover the interest accruing on the average loan. The current system is fuelling a self-perpetuating debt-generating machine which short-changes young people.”

  24. OLDNAT

    Interesting concept guaranteed to add confusion to football commentators already confused by ever evolving team formations. Who’s playing on the moderate wing for Chelsea tomorrow?

  25. Andy T (at 3:36 pm)

    “Tory manifesto – could it include free prescriptions in England? I wonder.”

    Since Ruth Davidson has suddenly reversed SCon policy to support free prescriptions, it seems a reasonable guess that this was done to keep in line with planned Tory policy in England.

  26. Danny

    “Events, my dear boy, events”

    Yes – I guess Chelsea could still be deducted 10 points for some yet undisclosed misdemeanor, and have the title taken from them.

    I should of course have added IMHO…..

  27. The tweet by Ruth Davidson

    “Corbyn’s spokesman saying Jeremy wasn’t on the side of the IRA, but simply seeking peace is offensive to anyone who’s worn the uniform.”

    is badly punctuated and requires a comma after peace.

    The way it is written suggests that seeking peace is offensive to anyone who has worn a uniform.

  28. @Chris Riley

    “A fourth issue is that dependent variables are not as easy as they could be to work out. Things that appear to have a bearing on earnings include geography”

    ——–

    True of course. And also true of the social capital you mention. For example, this research that shows graduates with rich parents earn much more of a premium…

    (Note that this research measures earnings after a decade so it’s before impact of tuition fees and gig economy etc.)

    http://www.cam.ac.uk/research/news/graduate-earnings-what-you-study-and-where-matters-but-so-does-parents-income

    “First ‘big data’ research approach to graduate earnings reveals significant variations depending on student background, degree subject and university attended.”

    “Latest research has shown that graduates from richer family backgrounds earn significantly more after graduation than their poorer counterparts, even after completing the same degrees from the same universities.”

  29. Prof Howard

    Exactly. The wording may be poor by accident – or quite deliberately.

  30. Back on topic

    Is this Ashcroft poll on Scottish VI reliable? It seems not to have been discussed here. It came out yesterday.

    Westminster voting intention (#Scotland)

    SNP: 41%
    CON: 30%
    LAB: 17%
    LDEM: 7%
    OTHER: 5%

    (Ashcroft / 12 May / 3,476 sample)

    Seems a bit of an outlier and wondered it there was anything odd about its method.

  31. @Chris Riley

    “And the fifth issue is that hardly anyone goes to university just to maximise their earnings and we shouldn’t treat the whole university system and the people who use it as if that’s it’s main or only purpose. What we really ought to be doing better is working out what value universities provide to individuals and to society and working out how to maximise that. Instead this sterile debate plays on to try to measure something that can’t be properly measured to convince people who won’t be convinced even if we did measure it.”

    ——-

    Agree very much that maximising earnings is not the only purpose. But it isn’t a sterile debate. As someone who went to both a school on a council estate and a top ten boarding school, I know how much advantage can matter…

    If some are already advantaged by parents providing house deposits and finding internships, if others are also locked into onerous degree debt on top, that’s an issue.

  32. Funding internships

    They prolly find them too though, or have friends who’ll employ offspring…

  33. Richard,
    “So the size of the Tory victory will depend who if anyone gets those reluctant voters to the polling station.”

    It is beginning to look that way. Can see why some people are looking at this election as more risky than first appears.

    Chris Riley,
    The times higher education article linked earlier illustrated that earnings are directly related to the standing of the univeristy someone attended, ie there is a gradation of graduate premium. That paticular article failed to show the relevant premium for someone going to what they regarded as the worst universities, and how much better (or not) this was than not having a degree.

    However, a point you did not mention is the question that while there is a correlation between attending university and income, is it a causal one? In other words, a third variable, call it intelligence, might determine that you go to university, indeed determine that you go to a good one, and also independently ensure that you do well in a chosen career. The fact you went to university might be wholly irrelevant to eventual earnings.

    Also there is the social issue, that people from a high status background have an advantage in getting to a university, and independently have an advantage because of their background in getting a good job.

  34. @Profhoward

    That is a cross break from the survey I linked above (the 3746 figure matches the Scotland base on page 15)

    http://lordashcroftpolls.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/2017_GE_Survey-Final-tables.pdf

    Not sure it is properly weighted.

  35. @Andrew Myers
    ’44-29-12-4-3 would give a majority of 108 and that is excluding the loss of any SNP seats.’

    Not quite . A Tory lead of 15% representa swing from Labour of 4.2% since 2015 – which would result in 35 gains from Labour. That would increase the Tory majority to 82. Add on Clacton and the majority is 84. A big majority – but quite a bit lower than 108.

  36. Prof Howard

    Given the size of the sample (3476 from Scotland) it should have been possible to weight each GB region properly , but I haven’t seen any indication that it was – in which case, it’s just a bigger crossbreak, than other polls, but no more reliable.

    In any case, the 5% with a Green VI are going to have to be very concentrated in the 3 seats they are standing in to reach that figure! :-)

    There seems to have been a YG Scottish poll conducted on 9/10 May, but it doesn’t seem to have been published – and perhaps will never be.

  37. Richard and Oldnat,

    Thanks! That is exactly the sort of answer and expertise one comes to UKPR for!

    Given the sample size it seems a wasted opportunity not to weight it correctly.

  38. @profhoward

    Looking at question
    Q.36 Which party did you vote for in the general election in May 2015?

    He has 23% Tory vs 15% actual in 2015
    and 20% Labour vs 24% actual

    So either false recall, or he asked for his survey to be concentrated in likely Tory gains – given who he supports, I would suggest the latter is more probable.

    But in summary, it has too many Tories, not enough Labour 2015 voters, so adjust the current VI numbers accordingly.

  39. If true that this “Scottish poll” by Ashcroft is not weighted properly, then John Curtice should be more careful in predicting 12 Conservative seats from it. That is , it seems, the import of his piece in today’s Times. (Which I have seen via Twitter).

  40. Prof Howard
    ‘Is this Ashcroft poll on Scottish VI reliable? It seems not to have been discussed here. ‘
    This appears to have been extracted from the GB survey which was too Tory – and Libdem. Respondents indicated a 9% Tory lead in 2015 – compared with the actual 6.6% outcome – and had the LibDems on 13% – compared with the 8.1% result.

  41. @Profhoward

    Yes, very embarrassing it appears

    Here is the article..oops..

    https://t.co/Ik3Ff8Rb9C

  42. “Jeremy wasn’t on the side of the IRA, but simply seeking peace is offensive to anyone who’s worn the uniform.”

    Again this misses the point that the British Government were talking to the IRA in secret from about 1972.

    It says something about our politics and press that the narrative that Corbyn is wrong to talk to the IRA and we shouldn’t talk to terrorists persists even though it’s well know we had secret negotiations and contacts for almost quarter of a century.

    Peter.

  43. Peter Cairns
    It wasn’t just that he talked to them (though it’s obviously different for an MP to publicly talk than for a government to secretly talk – if they did). It’s the fact that he openly supported the aims of the IRA, which the government obviously didn’t.

    G’night all.

  44. @Chris Riley et al

    On the supposed benefit that graduates get from doing a degree.

    Chris’s long list of caveats missed what is probably the most important. That the sort of person that does a degree is the sort of person more likely to earn more anyway.

    Take 2 non-graduates, one that did poorly at school, and one that did well but decided not to go to university. Which one do we think will earn more over their working life? To a substantial extent (although obviously not completely) it’s not the degree that makes the difference, it’s the person.

  45. The difference is perhaps that educating the person makes them more useful to society, so society gets the benefit of the degree, not them.

    Sounds like people should be paid to do degress. Er…didnt we start out there?

  46. Does anyone know why the “Latest Voting Intention” summary has not been updated for a week now? (since 8th May)

  47. On the subject of graduate premium, after a lot of discussion the business I work for have changed the salary structure from being graduate weighted to being much more based on multiple variables.

    While there are still graduate schemes, high performers who come from apprenticeship or just have technical certifications can rise much more quickly on the salary ladder.

    It’s about having the best people. Degrees might open doors and create opportunities but after that it’s down to the individual

  48. @robin “It’s the person that makes the difference not the degree”

    This has a lot to do with it. As do other factors most have been mentioned it posts. Which is why the headline numbers of these surveys need to be taken with “a pinch of salt”

    The most telling story was the UICAS head saying that final year students shouldn’t worry about getting a job. Clearly there is panic from students and parents that there aren’t many opportunities out there. In my time virtually everyone had a job lined up by xmas in the final year. Times are changing and we are producing too many graduates.

    I’ve 2 sons , both been to uni, they can’t think of a single friend or friend of a friend that has a graduate level job. They all feel totally jaded by the educational establishment’s promotion of the “degree route to success.”

    Those from less well off backgrounds saddled with paying back debt, simply cannot afford to move to where the work is and are forced to move back home. This is effecting social mobility.

  49. It also delays start of earnings by three years, or put it another way delays drawing your pension by three years, or reduces the size of the national workforce by 5%. Except where the education you receive is actually relevant to the job, which is probably the minority of cases. I laughed when a friend of mine with a Ph D in physics became a banker.

    Seems the labour manifesto has stirred up the debate on this topic again. Worked well for lib dems until they totally reneged on the promise.

  50. @Pete B
    “It’s the fact that he openly supported the aims of the IRA, ”
    It’s more that he still does not clearly condemn their methods.

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