This morning’s Times had a new YouGov poll, full tables are here.

Topline voting intention was CON 31%, LAB 34%, LDEM 8%, UKIP 17%, GRN 3%. The poll follows a torrid few weeks for the Conservative party – a badly received budget, IDS’s resignation, the Tata steelworks and the week long fuss over David Cameron’s tax affairs. All of that has occured against the backdrop of the party arguing with itself over Europe and saying very little about any other issue. It’s always difficult to link a drop in support in the polls to specific events, but there are plenty of plausible reasons for a fall.

YouGov’s latest topline figures for the EU referendum are REMAIN 50%, LEAVE 50%. Looking at the underlying questions, there are a couple of significant movements in favour of LEAVE. Firstly on terrorism, 25% of people now think that Britain would be safer from terrorism if we left the EU (up from 16% back in February) – perhaps an impact from the Brussels terrorist attacks. Secondly trust in David Cameron on the issue of Europe has dropped sharply, from 29% to 21%. In fairness, trust in most of the leave figures (including Boris Johnson) has fallen too – the only person whose figures have increased is Jeremy Corbyn, who with 28% trust is now more trusted on Europe than Cameron.

Looking at some more general questions on the Tory leadership David Cameron’s ratings have declined there too. In December his lead over Jeremy Corbyn as best Prime Minister was twenty-six points, now it is only seven points (almost all due to Cameron’s rating falling, rather than Corbyn’s increasing) – 32% Cameron (down 17), 25% Corbyn (up 2). As with the voting intention figures, I would be cautious about jumping to conclusions about the reasons for the drop in Cameron’s ratings – while the questions were asked just after the row over his investments, in the same people people said by 45% to 35% that Cameron hadn’t actually done anything wrong. It is just as likely to be the impact from the budget, from the general running of the government or from Cameron losing the support and loyalty of Conservative voters who are backing leave. It will be interesting to see to what degree the ratings of the Conservative party and David Cameron himself recover once the referendum is finally over and they can get on with something else (assuming, of course, that Cameron’s leadership survives the aftermath)

On the subject of Cameron’s future 31% of people now think he should step down in the next year (up from 18% in December), compared to 36% who think he should stay until 2019 or later (down from 50% in December). If Britain votes to leave the European Union 44% think that Cameron should resign. In terms of a successor, Boris Johnson remains the clear favourite of the public and of Conservative voters. Support for George Osborne is now very low – he is the choice of only 4% of the public, of only 2% of Conservative voters (behind Michael Gove and Sajid Javid). Osborne even lags behind Jeremy Corbyn in a question on who would make the best Prime Minister – he will have some catching up to do to repair his reputation ahead of any leadership election.


YouGov have published new polls in both Scotland and Wales in the last couple of days. Taking Wales first, topline voting intention figures for the Welsh Assembly are CON 19%(-3), LAB 35%(+1), LDEM 6%(nc), UKIP 17%(+2), Plaid 21%(nc) for the constituency vote and CON 20%(-2), LAB 31%(nc), LDEM 5%(nc), UKIP 16%(+2), Plaid 20%(-2) for the regional vote. The Conservatives are down a little, reflecting their drop in the national polls. Roger Scully’s detailled write up is here and the tabs are here.

The YouGov Scottish poll for the Times has topline figures of SNP 50%(+1), LAB 21%(+2), CON 18%(-1), LDEM 5%(-1) for the constituency vote, and SNP 45%(+2), LAB 19%(+2), CON 18%(-1), GRN 8%(nc), LDEM 5%(nc) in the regional vote. The last couple of YouGov Scottish polls had the Conservatives ahead of Labour on one vote or the other. Today’s poll had Labour back ahead, though they are still extremely close (closer than in most other Scottish polls). The rest of the poll had various questions on leadership, particularly on whether people think Ruth Davidson or Kezia Dugdale would make a better leader of the opposition – Ruth Davidson polled better, but her comparatively positive personal ratings are clearly not translating into much support for the Scottish Tories. Full tabs are here.

Finally today we got ICM’s weekly EU referendum tracker, with topline figures of REMAIN 42%, LEAVE 45%. Full tabs are here


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ComRes published a new London poll yesterday. As with all the other recent London polling we’ve seen it puts Sadiq Khan in a relatively comfortable first place. First preference votes are KHAN 44%(+2), GOLDSMITH 37%(-2), PIDGEON 7%(+1), WHITTLE 5%(nc), BERRY 4%(-2), GALLOWAY 2%(+1). With second preferences reallocated it works out at KHAN 55%, GOLDSMITH 45%. Full tabs are here.

Looking at the detailed tabs three-quarters of people who voted Tory in 2015 say they’ll vote for Goldsmith, four-fifths of Labour’s 2015 vote say they’ll back Khan. At the general election London voted Labour by a substantial margin and they got a substantial swing in their favour, at the 2010 election Labour also outperfomed in London. It is becoming an increasingly Labour city. Boris managed to break that link and win despite being a Conservative, clearly winning votes from people who did not support the Conservative party (on the same day that Boris won re-election as mayor the Labour party easily won the election for the London Assembly). Thus far Goldsmith and Khan don’t really appear to be doing that, the vote is splitting largely along normal party lines and that should result in a win for Sadiq Khan.

Meanwhile we’ve had three new EU referendum polls since my last update. ICM and YouGov have both published polls conducted online and showing one point leads for REMAIN. ICM’s figures are REMAIN 44%, LEAVE 43%, DK 13% (full details here), YouGov’s are REMAIN 39%, LEAVE 38%, DK/WNV 23% (full details here).

There was also new ORB telephone poll for the Telegraph. This is a little more interesting – regular readers will remember the last ORB phone poll was the one showing a Leave lead, extremely unusual for a poll conducted by telephone. This poll shows a seven point lead for REMAIN (REMAIN 51%, LEAVE 44%, DK 5%) far more typical of other polls conducted by phone. Full tabs are here.


The Times have a new YouGov poll in tomorrow’s paper, conducted after Wednesday’s budget. It’s not good news for George Osborne.

Every budget has positive and negative parts, and it’s the same here: some parts of Osborne’s budget are popular, some aren’t. Increasing the personal allowance is popular (83% say its a good idea), as is cracking down on international tax avoidance (81%), freezing fuel duty (74%) and the sugar tax (62%). People are more divided over the increase to the higher rate threshold (46% say it’s good, but 37% the wrong priority), and are negative about the cut in corporation tax (32% good idea, 43% wrong priority). The worst ratings are for the cuts to disability benefits for people reliant on aids or appliances. Only 13% of people support the disability cuts, 70% think they are the wrong priority at the present time, including 59% of Tory voters.

Budgets are more than just the sum of their parts of course. After each budget YouGov ask the same question about whether people think the budget was fair or unfair, this year 28% thought the budget was fair, 38% unfair. Both of last year’s budgets were seen as more fair than unfair, so were the budgets of 2014 and 2013 (past figures are all here). You have to go all the way back to 2012 to find the last time an Osborne budget was seen as unfair… the omnishambles budget. That is not a good precedent.

Meanwhile voting intention stands at CON 33%, LAB 34%, LDEM 6%, UKIP 16%. This is very much in line with the ICM poll earlier in the week that had Labour and Conservatives equal. People were understandably wary of reading too much into one poll, but we now have two polls both showing Labour and the Conservatives neck-and-neck, suggesting something is genuinely afoot.


Time for a quick update of other polls over the last few days. Firstly, YouGov put out new Scottish voting intentions at the weekend and London voting intentions yesterday.

YouGov’s Scottish voting intentions were SNP 49%, LAB 19%, CON 19%, LDEM 6% for the constituency vote; SNP 43%, LAB 17%, CON 19%, GRN 8%, LDEM 5%, UKIP 4% for the regional vote. The SNP obviously retain their overwhelming lead. Note how the Conservatives and Labour are essentially neck-and-neck for second place, this is consistent with YouGov’s last Scottish poll, but no other company has the Tories so close to Labour. Full tabs are here.

YouGov’s London poll shows Sadiq Khan still ahead, his nine point lead over Zac Goldsmith almost unchanged from January. Topline figures are KHAN 45%(nc), GOLDSMITH 36%(+1), WHITTLE 7%(+1), PIDGEON 5%(+1), BERRY 4%(-1), GALLOWAY 2%(nc). While Khan wouldn’t win on the first round, asked how they’d vote if the final two candidates were Khan and Goldsmith supporters of other candidates split 43%-30% in Khan’s favour, so he would come out as the comfortable winner. Full tabs are here.

Finally, and perhaps most intriguingly, there was a new ORB poll of EU referendum voting intentions in the Telegraph this morning. Topline figures were REMAIN 47%, LEAVE 49%, DK 4% (don’t know is so low because ORB have a squeeze question, asking how people who say don’t know are leaning). What’s interesting is that the poll was conducted by telephone – up until now we’ve seen a straightforward divide between phone polls showing a solid REMAIN lead and online polls showing a race that is neck-and-neck. Suddenly that online/phone divide doesn’t look so black and white. Full tabs are here.