YouGov have a new poll in the Times tonight conducted on Tuesday and Wednesday, after the resignations of David Davis and Boris Johnson. It suggests public opinon is breaking against the Chequers Brexit deal, and that public confidence in the government’s handling of Brexit is falling ever further.

Only 13% of people now think the Chequers Brexit deal would be good for Britain (down 1 since the pre-resignation poll at the weekend), 42% think it would not (up 9). 23% think it respects the referendum deal (down 4), 39% think it does not (up 10). Just 13% of people now think that the governemnt are handling the Brexit negotiations well, down from 18% at the weekend.

On voting intention, Labour have reopened a small lead, the first from YouGov since March. Topline figures have the Tories on 37% (down 2), Labour unchanged on 39%. The changes themselves are within the normal margin of error, but coming on top of the YouGov and Survation polls conducted at the the weekend which both showed a drop in the Conservative lead, it doesn’t look positive for them (though that said, an ICM poll earlier today, conducted between Friday and Monday, did not suggest any movement). As ever, it is worth waiting for other post-resignation polls to see if it turns out to be a consistent pattern, or just noise.


The weekly YouGov poll for the Times this morning has topline figures of CON 39%(-2), LAB 39%(-1), LDEM 9%(nc), UKIP 5%(+2). Fieldwork was on Sunday and Monday, mostly on Sunday afternoon and evening. The changes themselves are not signficant, but the disappearing Tory lead echoes the Survation poll at the weekend, and is the first YouGov poll not to show the Tories ahead since back in April. Note also that little uptick in UKIP support. It’s only one poll so may be nothing more than noise, but it’s worth keeping an eye on them.

The answers to questions on the Chequers Brexit deal were mostly negative (33% said the type of Brexit agreed at Chequers would be bad for Britain, just 13% said it would be good; 35% said they would be unhappy if the Chequers deal went ahead, just 19% would be happy.) However, relatively few people had any opinion at all – all the Chequers questions got over 40% don’t knows, only 38% of respondents said they had followed the story very or fairly closely.

However, the vast majority of the fieldwork for the poll took place before Davis and Johnson’s resignations. As well as potentially having an impact on perceptions of the government’s competence and unity, the resignations may well mean that this Brexit development has an impact when others have not. People who may not have noticed a report about yet another tedious internal Tory party row about the intricacies of Brexit may be more likely to notice the story when its Boris Johnson resigning from government because Theresa May has supposedly gone soft on Brexit.

In short, while this and the weekend Survation poll are interesting straws in the wind, the polls to really look at will be the ones conducted after the resignations…

Full tabs are here.


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Voting intention polls over the last fortnight have been showing the same pattern that we’ve become used to over the last four month: Conservative and Labour very close to each other in support, with the Tories averaging a very small lead.

Survation/GMB (20th June) – CON 41, LAB 38, LDEM 7
ICM/Guardian (24th June) – CON 41, LAB 40, LDEM 9
YouGov/Times (26th June) – CON 42, LAB 37, LDEM 9
Ipsos MORI (27th June) – CON 41, LAB 38, LDEM 9
YouGov/Times (4th July) – CON 41, LAB 40, LDEM 9
AVERAGE – CON 41, LAB 39, LDEM 9

There’s a fresh Survation poll in today’s Mail on Sunday, with fieldwork conducted wholly on Saturday, after the Chequers summit. Topline figures there are CON 38%(-3), LAB 40%(+2), LDEM 10%(+3). While Survation typically show Labour in a better polling position than other companies do, this is still the first Survation poll to show Labour ahead since March. On the other hand, it is well within the normal margin of error (Survation’s polls over the last four months have averaged at CON 41, LAB 40). I will leave it with my normal caveats about reading too much into polls after events – they have the same sample variation as any other poll, so don’t assume that any change is a result of the event, rather than just noise. Wait and see if other polls show a similar pattern of change.

In the meantime, is there anything polling can tell us about how the Brexit deal will impact public attitudes? Our starting point, as is so often the case, should be to recall how little attention most people pay towards the intricacies of the Brexit negoatiations. Most people are not glued to the ins- and outs- of it, don’t know or care about the specifics of court juristrictions and trade regulations. The Brexit deal will, in all likelihood, be judged upon broad brush preceptions. Do people think it is a good deal for Britain? Do people think it is a genuine Brexit?

On those two measures, the Survation poll gave people a brief summary of the deal and asked people if they approved – 33% did, 22% did not, 35% neither approved nor disapproved and 10% did not know. Balance of opinion amongst remainers and leavers was positive, though it went down better among Remainers (for Leave the break was 30% approve, 25% disapprove; for Remain the break was 39% approve, 25% disapprove). The response was less positive when they asked if it was faithful to the referendum result – 29% thought it was, 38% thought it was not, 34% said don’t know. Overall, 26% said it was the right deal, 42% that it was the wrong deal, 32% didn’t know.

That’s clearly a mixed response – the balance of public opinion approves of it, but doesn’t think it respects the result and doesn’t think it’s the right deal. And on all those measures an awful lot of people said don’t know. I expect that’s largely because people have been asked about something they weren’t paying much attention to and didn’t have much of an opinion on it yet (it cannot be easy to get a sample within a space of a few hours at the best of times. When England are playing a World Cup Quarter final at the same point…).

The question is how they will make that decision. For obvious reasons most people will not have spent their Saturday poring over the government press release from the Chequers summit, nor will they read the White Paper this week! It will depend how the papers react to it, how the broadcast media report it, how politicians people recognise like the party leaders, Boris Johnson, Nigel Farage and so on react to it.

The wise thing to do now is to wait and see if there is any lasting movement in the polls, or whether (in public opinion terms) this is just another one of those arguments about the fine details of Brexit that the public seem to be largely tuning out of.

(Note that – despite what it appears to show on my sidebar to the right – UKIP were NOT on zero percent in the latest Survation poll. The poll didn’t ask people who said they’ve vote “other” which other party they would vote for, so it’s impossible to tell UKIP support from the poll.)


This week’s YouGov poll for the Times has topline figures of CON 42%(nc), LAB 40%(+1), LDEM 9%(nc). Fieldwork was Monday and Tuesday and changes are from last week. The two point lead is a little lower than YouGov have been showing of late, but nothing outside normal sample variation.

On the other regular YouGov trackers, 44% of people think that Britain was wrong to vote for Brexit, 43% think it was right. Just 22% of people think that the government are doing well at negotiating Bret, 62% think they are doing badly (including a majority of both Leavers and Remainers). While the poll was taken after the government’s announcement of extra funding for the NHS, it has unsurprisingly has little impact on which party people trust more on the issue – 34% of people think Labour would handle the NHS better, 24% think the Conservatives would. Full tabs are here.

While it’s not a particularly new poll (the fieldwork was conducted the weekend before last) there was also a newly published BMG poll yesterday. Topline figures there were CON 38%(-1), LAB 41%(+2), LDEM 11%(+1). Changes are since early May. This is the only poll since mid-April to have shown Labour ahead. Full tabs are here.

UPDATE: A third poll out tonight. Survation have topline figures of CON 41%(nc), LAB 38%(-2), LDEM 7%(-2). Fieldwork was Tuesday to Thursday and changes are from the start of the month. The poll has some more questions on Brexit – full details are here.


YouGov’s weekly poll for the Times is out tonight (Times report here). Topline voting intention figures are CON 42%(-2), LAB 39%(+2), LDEM 8%(nc), returning to more run-of-the-mill figures after the unusual seven point outlier last week. Fieldwork was Monday and Tuesday.

Just 21% of people now think the government are handling Brexit negotiations well, 66% badly – the lowest net figure that YouGov have recorded so far on the question. The other regular Brexit tracker on whether it was the right or wrong decisions continues showed the now typical picture of slightly more people thinking it wrong (46%) than right (43%).

Despite disapproving of Brexit, people still don’t think it would be legitimate for Parliament to block it. While, by 40% to 37%, people think it would be acceptable for Parliament to reject the Brexit deal, by 49% to 39% they think it would be illegitimate for Parliament to block Brexit entirely.