There is a new(ish) Angus Reid poll in the Economist here. Topline figures are CON 33%(+1), LAB 23%(nc), LDEM 30%(-3). Fieldwork was conducted over last weekend, Friday to Monday, so it’s slightly out of date now. As usual with Angus Reid, it shows a far lower Labour score than other companies, and is still showing a comparatively high figure for others.
Interestingly they have prompted people with a mock up ballot paper of the candidates standing in their constituency, a method MORI always used to use after nominations have closed (I’m not sure if they still can now they have switched to phone polling) – while it’s interesting, according to the Economist it didn’t actually make any difference to the results.
The polling YouGov did on Gordon Brown’s gaffe yesterday is up in full on the website here. 44% sympathize with Mrs Duffy, 23% with Brown. 50% think its a storm in a teacup, 46% think the worse of Brown. 26% think that Brown was genuinely sorry, 56% think he wasn’t.
The imporant bit though (especially given we are a week away from an election), is whether it changes votes. 9% said it made them less likely to vote Labour, 3% more likely to vote Labour – the rest no difference. My regular readers will know I am not a fan of questions like this – people use them to signify approval or disapproval regardless of whether it will actually change their vote. Lo and behold – that 9% of people who say it will make them less likely to vote Labour, is made up of Conservative and Lib Dem supporters. Most of those who say it will make them more likely to vote Labour, are voting Labour anyway.
Of course, the better test of whether it changes any votes will be whether voting intention changes. We’ll have the normal YouGov poll tonight, beyond that most polling will probably be after the third debate, so it will be difficult to distinguish any Mrs Duffy effect from a debate effect.
There is a new(ish) TNS BMRB poll out this morning. The topline figures are CON 34%(nc), LAB 27%(-2), LDEM 30%(nc). The fieldwork was conducted between the 21st and 27th April. TNS do traditional face-to-face fieldwork in people’s homes, so almost by definition it takes far longer to do. As the speed and quantity of polls in this election keep rising though, it does render polls like this slightly behind the times. I’ve also got dates for that Harris poll yesterday, it was conducted between the 20th and 26th, so once again, quite elderly fieldwork.
ComRes’s poll was supposed to be embargoed until 10pm, but given both ITV’s Meridian Tonight and Conservativehome have already published it it seems somewhat pointless to wait. Their rolling poll for ITV and the Independent has figures of CON 36%(+3), LAB 29%(nc), LDEM 26%(-3). ComRes’s fieldwork would have been conducted between Monday and Tuesday, so wholly prior to the Mrs Duffy incident (though at the same time as Populus’s poll yesterday, which also showed 36% for the Tories).
The Guardian has a new poll of Liberal Democrat target seats here. I think this is the first such study of these seats, which have suddenly become key to the election result. ICM polled the first 42 seats on this list, seats where the Liberal Democrats need a swing of up to 6% to win.
The share of the vote in these seats back in 2005 was CON 36%, LAB 23%, LDEM 35%. In ICM’s poll today they found support at CON 35%(-1), LAB 18%(-5), LDEM 39%(+4). That equates to a swing of 4.5% from Labour to the Lib Dems, and a swing of 2.5% from the Conservatives to the Lib Dems. This isn’t actually very good for them if you compare it to the national polls – the last ICM GB poll was showing the equivalent of a 7.5% swing from Labour to the Lib Dems, and a 3.5% swing from the Conservatives to the Lib Dems – in other words, the Lib Dems are doing worse in their target seats than nationally. On these figures, the Lib Dems would gain 10 seats from the Conservatives, and 11 from Labour.
It gets more interesting though if you look seperately at the Conservative-held LibDem targets, and the Labour-held LibDem targets. As Julian Glover rightly warns in his commentary, only 15 of these seats are Labour held so the sample size isn’t huge and some caution is necessary, but it appears to show that the Lib Dem advance in marginals is wholly concentrated in Labour held ones: taken separately, responses in Con-v-LD seats shows no discernable swing to the Liberal Democrats, but a swing of about 8 points in Lab-v-LD seats. That would result in the Lib Dems taking
about 28 or so seats from Labour, but few if any from the Conservatives. If this finding is at all accurate, it will be key to the result.