This week’s YouGov/Sunday Times poll is up here, with topline figures of CON 33%, LAB 38%, LDEM 9%, UKIP 12%.

The biggest chunk of the rest of the survey covered the ongoing historical child abuse story. Three-quarters of the public think that it’s probably true that some senior political figures were involved in child abuse in the 1970s and 1980s, and that there was a deliberate cover up. They are more divided over how well the current government have responded to the allegations – 34% think they’ve handled it well, 41% badly. 44% of people say they have at least some confidence in the inquiries under Baroness Butler-Sloss and Peter Wanless to fully investigate the matter, 44% do not. 56% would rather see a full public inquiry.

More generally 46% think questions about historical child abuse are being asked in a proportionate and measured way and there a genuine questions to be asked, 29% think it risks becoming a rumour-led witch hunt of retired politicians.

Interestingly, and perhaps reflecting their general suspicion towards the establishment, UKIP supporters are by far the most likely to believe there was a cover up (90%) and have by far the least confidence that the inquiries will get to the bottom of them (26% – compared to 67% of Conservatives and 65% of Lib Dems).

The other new poll is today is a Scottish ICM poll in the Scotland on Sunday. Topline figures with changes from last month are YES 34%(-2), NO 45%(+2). Excluding don’t knows it works out at YES 43%(-2), NO 57%(+2). The movement is towards NO, but it’s within normal margins of error and appears in line with ICM’s longer term trends. Looking back the YES score (excluding don’t knows) in ICM’s monthly Scottish polls this year have been 46%, 43%, 46%, 48%, 43%, 46% and now 43%. That looks to me like just random variation.


We had a glut of seven point leads at the start of the week – from Ashcroft and Populus on Monday and YouGov on Tuesday. At the end of the week things look like they are back to normal again – we won’t get Ashcroft till Monday, but Populus’s second poll of the week has more typical figures of CON 34%, LAB 36%, LDEM 8%, UKIP 12% (tabs here) and YouGov had a Labour lead of four on Wednesday and three this morning – CON 34%, LAB 37%, LDEM 8%, UKIP 12% (tabs here).

There was also a new Survation Scottish poll for the Daily Record. Like the recent TNS poll, the main movement was actually from don’t knows towards the two campaigns, with the lead once don’t knows were removed remaining the same. Topline figures are YES 41%(+2), NO 46%(+2), without don’t knows that works out at Yes 47%(nc), No 53%(nc) (Tabs here.)


YouGov had a new Scottish referendum poll in this morning’s Sun – tabs are now up on the website here. The headline referendum voting figures are 36%(-1) for YES, 53%(+2) for NO, changes are from YouGov’s last poll in April. Excluding don’t knows this works out at YES 40%, NO 60%.

The changes are within the margin of error from April, so don’t read too much into the movement to NO. More notable is what it doesn’t show – the recent Survation, Panelbase and ICM polls showed movement to YES (albeit, the ICM one was probably reversion to the mean), so it’s notable that YouGov aren’t showing the same. The wider picture of Scottish referendum polling remains that what movement there is in voting intention is so slow that it is hard to discern beneath normal random variation, and right now it is difficult to be certain whether there is still a drift towards YES or whether things have stagnated. There also remains a substantial and difficult to explain difference between the figures from different pollsters, one I doubt will be resolved until the votes are counted.

If the topline figures here will be a relief to the NO campaign, the rest of the poll is a much more mixed picture. The Yes Scotland campaign is seen as the more positive of the two campaigns – more people think it has been positive than negative, while people are more likely to view the Better Together campaign as negative than positive. However, the Better Together campaign is seen as having been mostly honest (by 40% to 34%), the Yes Scotland campagn mostly dishonest (by 42% to 35%).

On the question of a televised debate, the Scottish public would much prefer to see a debate between Alex Salmond and David Cameron (48%) than between Alex Salmond and Alistair Darling (21%). Finally Yes Scotland seem to have a substantial advantage in the ground war – something you see claimed anecdotally, but it’s nice to have evidence to prove it. 49% of people recalled being contacted by Yes Scotland over the last few weeks compared to only 38% saying they’ve been contacted by Better Together.


There were two new Scottish polls in the Sunday papers. One was by Panelbase for the SNP, one for ICM in the Scotland on Sunday. The Panelbase poll has topline figures of YES 43%, NO 46%, Don’t know 12%. Excluding don’t knows that works out at YES 48%, NO 52%. The previous three Panelbase polls asked using this version of the question showed NO leads of five points, so the change here is well within the normal margin of error, but the direction of travel is once again towards YES and is the closest Panelbase poll we’ve had yet.

The ICM poll had topline figures of YES 36%, NO 43%, Don’t know 21%. Excluding don’t knows that works out at YES 45%, NO 55%. Compared to their poll last month YES are up two points and NO are down three. However last month’s ICM poll was something of an outlier, showing a sharp shift towards NO, and I suspect this one is largely just a reversion to the mean after a freaky poll a month ago. While ICM have messed about with their methodology in Scottish polls this year, a crude average of their leads to date is 8 points. Today’s isn’t that different to the average.


Two interesting polls last night. The daily YouGov poll for the Sun had topline voting intentions of CON 34%, LAB 36%, LDEM 6%, UKIP 14%, GRN 5%. That’s a couple of lower Labour leads in a row, but as ever, that could easily be margin of error. Worth noting is the 6% for the Lib Dems, that’s the lowest that YouGov have ever shown since they started polling in 2001 (the lowest the Lib Dems have recorded in any GB poll is, so far as I can tell, a 3% in an ICM poll for the Sunday Correspondent in 1989. You occasionally get Lib Dem politicians rolling out the old story of how they remember when the Lib Dems were just an asterisk, which pollsters sometimes use to denote less than 0.5% but not actually zero. As far as I can tell, and I’ve been tracking the mythical beast for years, that never happened in a GB poll, though it could have done in a Scottish or by-election poll. 3% is the lowest to beat!)

Secondly there was a new Survation Scottish poll for the Daily Record. It has referendum topline figures of YES 39%(+2), NO 44%(-2). Excluding don’t knows that works out at YES 47%, NO 53%. Looking at Survation’s past Scottish referendum polling they’ve typically been showing YES at 37-39% and NO at 46-48%, so it does suggest movement away from NO… but as ever, it is only one poll and it’s the wider trend that counts. Tabs are here.

There was also a “new” TNS poll out yesterday, though the fieldwork was actually conducted about a fortnight ago, so much older than the Survation poll. That had referendum voting intention figures unchanged from the month before, YES 30%(nc), NO 42%(nc).