YouGov’s weekly poll for the Sunday Times has topline voting intention figures of CON 44%(-1), LAB 35%(+3), LDEM 9%(+1), UKIP 3%(-3). Changes are from the YouGov/Times polls in the week. The fieldwork was, as usual, conducted on Thursday afternoon and Friday, so was wholly after the Conservative manifesto launch (though, of course, before much of the media reporting and discussion of it)

The nine point Tory lead is the lowest we’ve seen so far this campaign, the first in single figures. As ever, one should be cautious of unusual polls and wait to see if the trend is backed up by other polls before getting either too excited or too panicked (depending upon one’s point of view!). Perhaps it could be that the Conservative manifesto and the coverage of the changes to care funding has knocked their support. Perhaps it’s just a continuation of the gradual narrowing of the Tory lead that we have been seeing anyway over recent weeks. Perhaps it’s just a bit of a outlier, and the next round of polls will go back to showing a larger Tory lead. Time will tell.

There is also supposedly a Survation poll in the Mail on Sunday. No idea yet if that was after the manifesto launches and whether or not it will show a similar tightening.

UPDATE: No figures from the Survation poll yet, but according to the front page of the Mail on Sunday it was done after the manifesto launch and shows a Tory lead of 12 points.

UPDATE 2: The Survation figures are CON 46%, LAB 34%, LD 8%, UKIP 3%. Tabs are here. Changes are complicated – Survation’s previous poll had an 18 point lead, but that was conducted by telephone for Good Morning Britain, while this one is online. Survation’s last online poll using a comparable method was, I think, back in April, and had only an 11 point lead for the Tories.

816 Responses to “YouGov/Sunday Times – CON 44, LAB 35, LD 9, UKIP 3”

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  1. 35% – Wow!

  2. First
    If I ever get out of moderation

  3. Well it appears the Labour bounce is a confirmed trend now from high 20’s now at low to mid 30’s.

    This next week will be interesting to see if it stabalises, I fully expect the Tory sledgehammers to come out this next week due to panic. I think elderly care and social care policies went down like a lead balloon in the tory heartlands and might have got some notice from the marginals, as we know Labour need that older vote to swing from Con to Lab for it to be competitive.

    Stay Tuned Folks!


    “YouGov/Sunday Times
    On the changes to care funding 35% said they supported them, 40% they opposed them”

  5. It will be interesting to see if the polls over the next few days show the same movement.

    The change is going to make the threat of getting a Corbyn government more real for the Conservatives advertising. But what the Conservatives need to do is scrap the care policy – if they can. I can’t think of much more foolish in an election than to announce a policy that sounds like a ‘free’ service has been replaced by one that now charges and in addition will confiscate the homes of vulnerable people.

    If I were Labour I would just lead on that for the next two weeks.

  6. There comes a stage in every (recent) election campaign where a poll merges that seems to shake the consensus view of the likely outcome. I’m guessing this is it. Cue lots of media speculation about panic at CCHQ and a couple of padded memoirs about how named individuals responded, Oh, and assume it will make no difference in practice when the Tories still win a majority of 100+.

  7. I really think it’s worth tracking down at Corbyn at Prenton Park – the Libertines about to go on. Ask yourself this – could May or Cameron or even Blair have got that reception?

    Not a leader?


    Westminster voting intention: CON: 46% (-2) LAB: 34% (+4) LDEM: 8% (-) UKIP: 3% (-1) (via @Survation / 19 – 20 May)

  9. Latest Survation poll shows Tory lead cut from 18% to 12% with Con on 46% and Lab at 34%
    Worth remembering that exactly one month ago YouGov polled Con with a 24% lead over Lab. That lead is now down to 9%.

    Perhaps folks on here just might want to give Corbyn a little credit-
    heaven forbid. He is a natural on the hustings.

  10. Worth noting re Survation poll

    This poll contains an updated Survation methodology; while Survation were the first British Polling Council member to include UKIP in its main party voting intention prompt for national polls, in light of UKIP standing in only 377 seats this General Election, down from 624 in 2015, Survation has chosen to ask initial UKIP voters who they would vote for if UKIP were not to stand a candidate in their constituency.

    If a respondent who initially told us they would vote for UKIP is found to live in a constituency where a UKIP candidate is not standing, their vote is reallocated according to their ‘squeezed’ preference. UKIP votes redistributed in this way tended to break for ‘undecided’ and ‘would not vote’, although some were allocated to other parties.

  11. @OldNat

    Full marks to Survation for doing this. Other pollsters should follow.

  12. Always hard to judge anything from crossbreaks, but Survation is yet another poll suggesting that the Scottish sample has a lower transfer from SLab to SCon than was being hyped (SNP 47% : SCon 24% : SLab 22%).

  13. Lazy uninspiring manifesto from Cons with nothing to sell on the doorstep. Sure I think Labours is completely unrealistic, but people can obviously dream and buy in to it. Very poor week for Conservatives. How will they respond?

  14. RAF


    It’s a sensible strategy that could also be adopted by all pollsters that aren’t standing in virtually all constituencies in a polity.

  15. Not sure what to make of these polls. Clearly the lead is narrowing, but the Tory VI has still been holding up very well and with unusual consistency.

    I also don’t think the planned Tory care reforms or manifesto have anything to do with this shift – we know most (non-geek) people pay scant attention to these details.

    Perhaps the increase in Labour VI is from likelihood to vote and the widely reported increase in voting registration?

  16. Can’t take Survation seriously since their neck-and-neck poll in Oldham and Saddleworth way back then.

  17. Both the Yougov and the Survation show Tory + UKIP below 50%, when they have been pretty much stable in 51-53, going higher at times, for a long time.

    For the first time it is more than just a possible rejigging of the different blocs. (Or could it be non-voters coming in for Corbyn?)

    This could be a bit of Cleggmania, only going for Corbyn.

    Or May could have run the worst campaign in the history of politics. Passive for the first three weeks, followed up with announcements that hit core vote. And having cleverly denied her the debates to get the big messages across…

  18. Sorry – should have been

    “It’s a sensible strategy that could also be adopted by all pollsters for all parties that aren’t standing in virtually all constituencies in a polity.

  19. If the Labour “centrists” had not tried their utmost to discredit Corbyn, would Labour be polling better now or had the public already made its mind up about him?

  20. Survation tables seem a bit high for the Conservatives in London, but also show that only a quarter to a fifth of people support the care policy – though I admit it’s a bit unfair as no-one is likely to state they support additional payments.

    From the tables it would better for the Conservatives to announce an extra 1p on income tax to pay for care – that Lib Dem policy seems to be popular…

  21. @ Joseph1832

    I’m not sure the polling data bears out the idea of ‘Corbynmania’ ;-) He’s still being shown to be deeply unpopular.

    Conversely I seem to remember Clegg being compared favourably to Churchill at the peak of his TV debate success!

  22. Rich – ” Very poor week for Conservatives. How will they respond?”

    She needs to pick another fight with Juncker.

  23. Candy ,
    if anyone believe the Tory party changes to [care funding] ,and cuts to the WFA are popular , you must drink in very different pubs to me.

    Tories are clearly in the lead and surprisingly holding up , if The torries do not fall by next week -end, it means that pensioner are willing to take the cuts for the sake of the Tories party.

  24. @Fewmet

    Perhaps it helped. It’s allowed Corbyn to distance himself from the previous Labour administrations. Sort of like Blair’s Clause 4 moment but in the other direction. He’s been able to characterise himself as a political outsider and underdog instead of just another establishment figure.

  25. According to the latest OpiniumReseach poll Theresa May still has a net approval of 17 points while Corbyn remains an unpopular figure(27/45).

    Brits still trust the Conservatives to run the economy, too.

    And an increase in Labour share before election day might help the Conservatives getting rid of sleeping Tories acting too confident refusing to get out and vote and Ukip supporters not backing the conservative candidate this time.

  26. @CANDY: “On the changes to care funding 35% said they supported them, 40% they opposed them”

    So 65% of voters don’t support one of their key policies. That’s pretty devastating.

  27. Well, it’s getting interesting. Conservatives still set to win of course but anything less than a majority of 100 would be a ‘loss’ really, given what they are expecting. Though of course it’s still a huge majority!

    Interesting about the UKIP push question for seat with no UKIP. I wonder if they should do same for Greens, who have stood down in 30 odd seats.

  28. I will just add that no matter what your political colour, if your left, centre or right you have to admit:

    Corbyn is a damn good campaigner.

    He seems so much more at home at rallies and meeting people than Theresa May. I suppose he has a lot of experience at it so it would follow the logic.

    However, I have a sneaking suspicion that he doesn’t like the idea of actually governing though! Haha

  29. @Sssimon:

    By the Cleggmania comparison, I mean someone getting a surge of popularity during a campaign. After all, Labour has gone up significantly, despite being thoroughly disunited, and Corbyn and his supporters being the active part of the campaign.

    But will it hold any better?

    [NB: I am horrified, but unless these two polls are both outliers, there is a turn away from the Brexit parties – although at a time when Brexit is not exactly centre stage.]

  30. Clearly tonights polls are not good news for the Cons. with big drop in leads and some reduction in vote preference. Clearly been a bad week for the Tories.

    Looking at questions in the Cons manifesto, the extra money for the NHS, the immigration target, the winter fuel means testing, exiting the EU without a deal if only bad deal available, lifting ban on new granmmers were all seem as positives. The dropping of the pledge on income tax and NHI was neutral. Scrapping school lunches, social care policy, scrapping pensions triple lock, 0.7% GDP international aid were all seen as negatives.

    Using Electoral calculus the YouGov poll indicates a majority of 48 and the Survation 78. I’ll wait to see if any other polls come out tonight to consider revising my forecast but at the moment my hunch is not to change it.

  31. Polling

    There were a number off posters ,including myself, though being no fan of Corbyn refused to underestimate him as a campaigner battle hardened as he was by his own.Nor can he be said to be following the wrong campaign course. It is left wing and it is genuine.I do not comment on what I think about it because i would be moderated but it was the only one that could have got him here. An insipid tory lite campaign would hopeless.
    The election can go a number of ways.Corbyn might continue to gain momentum or the fact of the corbyn rise might raise fears about Brexit. one thing is clear and that is the Tories need to begin to participate in this election. It is all very well to run a presidential election but you need a president out there winning it.

  32. Nottingham R

    He is a good caompaigner but it also the same reason why you hear comments that he comes across as a trade union official, rather than PM in waiting.


  33. There is another polling point – if (as Candy says) the strategy is to appeal to leave voters by starting a row with the EU is it possible this would unite those who don’t hate the UE behind Labour as it becomes a two horse race?

    Also it might be there are some voters who don’t think snarling is a very good negotiating tactic and might just prefer somebody more polite to handle the exit talks.

  34. I did wonder whether TM avoiding TV debates was a wise move, given the relative affection she enjoys. Perhaps she’ll backtrack on that now and we’ll get a debate between the two main parties.


    Totally agree with your analysis. Spot on.

    To add further in general, I think this polling data will be the scare and the kick that gets the Conservatives campaign going.

    They will be on the attack from now on and it will play into the ‘Coalition of Chaos’ approach they have been using. It will also be interesting to see if they start using the arsenal they have on Corbyn now.

    I still expect a large Conservative majority.

  36. Isn`t it weird that yougov finds Labour gaining no ground in Scotland still below 20 percent and way below its performance in 2015 but in mid 30 territory across the whole UK? Outlier in both ways?

  37. Polling 2

    I thought that TM would have learnt something from Osborne in 2010. He squandered an 18 point lead over labour by deciding to tell the ageing electorate beforehand that he was going to play around with their retirement age to their detriment. What did Labour do? exactly what they are doing now.Played up their fears.
    As Helmut Kohl said: when you are inviting people into your dark cellar do not tell them what instruments of torture await.

  38. @rogerh: “I suspect any change is as much due to Theresa May with her presidential campaign and obvious fear of encountering unvetted members of the public. The more people see of her the less they seem to like her.”

    What is almost awesome is that the Guardian went big on this line of criticism from the moment the campaigning started – or at least when she refused to take part in the debates.

    And the Tories have not put it right. Too late now.

    But it struck at the brand. Theresa May had no public following. Became PM, people lied her. Always vulnerable position.

    also, being a general election, best to not mix “take back control” with “how that control will be exercised”. One is constitutional, the other temporary politics.

  39. @ROGERH

    We need to remember that Theresa May can hardly walk down a street or risk large random crowds – it will be a security nightmare. She is PM and whether we like to think so or not – she is a target.

    Plus the far left […] would have a field day. They where out in force outside the Conservative Manifesto launch.

    Corbyn doesn’t have this problem at all.

    Plus it is debatable how much of these crowds he attracts are activists, students and Momentum members… and how many are actually genuine new swing voters.

  40. Update 2 suggests that the Conservatives have actually increased their lead by 1% using a comparable method since April ?

  41. “We need to remember that Theresa May can hardly walk down a street or risk large random crowds – it will be a security nightmare. She is PM and whether we like to think so or not – she is a target.”

    Come off it. Even the queen meets more real people in a normal day. May doesn’t like unscripted encounters. Nothing to do with security. There was far more real risk at the height of the IRA’s campaigns than today.

  42. @RO27

    We need to remember that Theresa May can hardly walk down a street or risk large random crowds – it will be a security nightmare. She is PM and whether we like to think so or not – she is a target.

    Other PMs managed it. What makes TM so different?

  43. Bless him, Major went among the crowds with his soap box gave just as good back.

  44. oliver

    “Isn`t it weird that yougov finds Labour gaining no ground in Scotland still below 20 percent and way below its performance in 2015 but in mid 30 territory across the whole UK?”

    Why? Of course it isn’t “the whole UK”. The polls are technically “GB”, but the English polity is so large compared to the Scots and Welsh ones, that the data from there overwhelms the data from “the ancillary bits of England”.

    Different polities have different dynamics and characteristics, so differences are to be expected.

    However, the SLab vote has held up better than many had expected, so you shouldn’t be too disappointed.

  45. It’s clear at least how right she was to dodge debating with Corbyn head-to-head.

  46. When Attlee campaigned he was driven around the country by his wife in the family car.

  47. I agree witht he comments above if Theresa wanted to get her hands dirty and get amongst it she could do!

    Hell I remember John Major and his SoapBox I think the public respected that in 92. I’d love to see her get amongst it!

  48. RO27
    “She is PM”

    Is she? She was before the election was called, certainly.

    [Yes. The Prime Minister continues in office until they resign (though there are limits to what they can do in purdah, and after the election if the outcome of the election is unclear) – AW]

  49. Nottingham R

    ” I’d love to see her get amongst it!”

    Doesn’t that depend on what “it” is? Now that the fan has been turned on ………

  50. @rogerh

    I think RO27 is right here. The leading figure of a western state simply should not meet unvetted people for security reasons. Did you already forget the islamic Westminster attack?
    And on the left we all know how well and polite they tend to behave.
    Trump will never meet regular people in public without massive security forces arround him, same applies to chancellor Merkel as well.

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