There are three new polls tonight, ComRes in the Indy, Populus in the Times and YouGov in the Sun. Populus and ComRes both show increased Labour leads, YouGov confirms the increased Labour lead they have already shown since the budget.
YouGov in the Sun has topline figures of CON 35%, LAB 42%, LDEM 9%.
Populus in the Times has topline figures, with changes from last month’s Populus poll, of CON 34%(-3), LAB 38%(-1), LDEM 11(nc), Others 16%(+3).
ComRes in the Indy has topline figures, with changes from their last phone poll as month ago, of CON 33%(-4), LAB 43%(+3), LDEM 11%(-2), Other 13%(+3). The ten point lead from ComRes is the first double digit lead Labour have enjoyed from any company since last March and ComRes’s biggest since 2005.
The other questions in the Populus and ComRes polls deal with the budget, and echo the findings we’ve already seen in the YouGov and ICM polling over the weekend that the reduction in the 50p rate of tax and the “granny tax” are deeply unpopular. One positive finding for the Conservatives in the Populus poll is that despite the cut in the 50p tax rate the poportion of people who think the Conservatives “represent ordinary people, not just the better off” has remained constant at 31%, rather than dropping. This doesn’t entirely surprise me, most people thought the Conservatives cared more about the rich anyway, the cut in the 50p is probably going to entrench existing damaging views of the Conservatives rather than create new ones. Personally I suspect it’s the “granny tax” that has done real harm.
About a third of the the Populus poll and ComRes polls were conducted after the Conservative cash-for-access story broke. ComRes remark that their voting intention figures on Sunday showed a much larger Labour lead… I wouldn’t read too much into this yet, the margin of error on a third of a poll of 1000 people is huge, and it may just be that ComRes got more Laboury people on Sunday. The YouGov poll, which unlike the two others was conducted wholly on Sunday and Monday does not show a further shift to Labour, but as ever is just one poll. Let’s wait and see what impact, if any, the access scandal has…
UPDATE: Sigh, looking at the reaction on Twitter people are already getting excited over the portion of the ComRes fieldwork that was conducted after Sunday, which had a 17 point Labour lead – including people who, frankly, should know better. That’ll be based on 350 people, with a consequentially large margin of error, and would only have been weighted as part of the larger sample, not weighted in its own right.
UPDATE2: On Thursday I said keep an eye on the 60+ crossbreak. Now, age crossbreaks are very volatile and it’s wrong to read too much into one wacky result, but now we’ve got three YouGov polls since the budget showing sharply reduced Tory leads amongst over 60s (Labour are marginally ahead today). In ComRes’s poll there is a hefty Labour lead amongst 55-64 year olds, and a single digit Tory lead amongst over 65s. In contrast ICM at the weekend still had a big Tory lead amongst the elderly, so the traffic isn’t all one way. Keep an eye on it, but it’s starting to look like the Conservatives may have taken a knock amongst those affected by the granny tax.