The Times have released a new YouGov poll of party members – the report is here and the tables here.

Theresa May’s time is essentially up. Party members are normally the loyalist of the loyal, but even here there are few good words to be said. Only 20% of her own members think she is doing well and 79% think she should resign. Asked about her record, 25% of Tory party members think she has been a poor Prime Minister, 38% a terrible Prime Minister.

Let us therefore move swiftly onto her replacement. The obvious frontrunner with party members remains Boris Johnson. He is seen as a good leader by 64% to 31%, and is the first choice of 39% of party members, easily ahead of his rivals. He has the highest positive ratings on every measure YouGov asked about – 77% of party members think he has a likeable personality, 70% that he would be able to win a general election, 69% that he shares their outlook, 67% that he is up to the job, 69% that he would be a strong leader, 61% that he would be competent.

Johnson is very clearly in pole position – yet in past Conservative leadership elections the clear early frontrunner has not necessarily gone on to win (and indeed, there is no guarantee that Johnson will even reach the final round or get to be voted on by party members). One can recall the time when Michael Portillo was the obvious frontrunner to succeed William Hague, or David Davis the obvious frontrunner to succeed Michael Howard.

Looking at the rest of the field, Dominic Raab is in second place in first preferences on 13%. As the other candidate to have resigned from the cabinet – and likely to be see as a “true Brexiteer” by members – he comes closest to Johnson in the head-to-head match ups and beats ever other candidate in head-to-head figures. Considering he has a substantially lower profile than Johnson, it is a positive finding.

Of the Brexiteers in the cabinet, Michael Gove is the second best known candidate after Johnson, but polls badly on many counts. While most see him as competent and up to the job, he is not seen as capable of winning an election or having a likeable personality. Andrea Leadsom is seen as likeable, but not as an election winner. Penny Mordaunt receives high don’t know figures on most scores.

Looking at the candidates who backed Remain in the referendum, Sajid Javid seems best placed candidate from that wing of the party. In first preferences he is in joint third with Michael Gove, and in the head to head scores he would beat Hunt, Hancock, Mordaunt or Stewart (and tie with Leadsom). He scores well on being likeable, competent and up to the job, but his figures are more mixed on being seen as an election winner.

These are, of course, only the opinions of party members. While they will have the final say, they do not get a say on who makes the shortlist. That is down to MPs, and as things stand there is very scant information on who is doing well or badly among that electorate.


955 Responses to “YouGov polling of Tory party members”

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  1. I’m voting green tomorrow, partly because they’re a properly European party, and partly because we have a good Green MEP (Molly Scott Cato) and I’d like her to continue – assuming the exercise turns out to have any point at all.
    Anecdotal evidence suggests Greens doing quite well, but not spectacular.. Anything above 30% for Farage will be spun as a massive triumph. So the questions are: will the Lib Dems beat Labour, and will the Tories be in single figures and be in fourth or fifth place? And just how many of our fellow citizens are going to bother to turn out to vote?
    Looking forward to everyone’s predictions over the next few days. Then we can move on to polling a Tory leadership contest and probably a Lib Dem one too – though everyone seems to have forgotten about that one for now :)

  2. Anyway, looks like May is on her way out tonight….

  3. I could hold my nose until it bled but I couldn’t vote for a party led by Cable who was one of the architects of austerity & enjoyed sacking people. He, Clegg & others caused the 2015 collapse of the Lib-Dems which weakened the anti-Brexit position.
    That leaves me with the Greens: but having looked at various blogs it appears that will not help the so-called anti-Brexit parties in the NWest to win more seats. It looks more likely to increase Brexit seats. So I shall vote Lab.
    Why I/we are going thru ll this public breast-beating is beyond me. But I no longer follow the polls except in the most general sense. Why bother with the daily twists & turns? They have been “wrong” too often, so what is the point?

  4. @Norbold

    Probably locked herself in the bunker.

    Several weeks worth of food down there.

    Boris is going to need a bigger winch.

  5. @norbold
    “I can’t really understand”

    I’m really struggling to understand why some of the more loyal labour supporters, activists and commentators are unable to comprehend why so many voters have left them over this.

    If you offer voters policies they’re not keen on they aren’t going to vote for you, particularly when the voting system allows it. Seems pretty logical for me. It strikes me there’s an arrogance and stark lack of responsibility and self awareness here. There’s always been the sense from parts of labour that they consider themselves to be the ‘rightful’ left wing party, and that this ‘splitting the vote’ is entirely the fault of the others and not perhaps their own inability to commit to what the vast majority of their own voters wanted.

  6. Steven Swinford of the Telegraph with a couple of interesting and informative tweets:

    Thread
    Conversation

    Steven Swinford
    @Steven_Swinford
    Exclusive:

    Here’s A36 of the WAB which has enraged Cabinet today

    It explicitly sets out path to a 2nd referendum via an amended motion, which it sets out as follows:

    ‘That this House agrees there should be another referendum before the withdrawal agreement is ratified

    Thread
    Conversation

    Steven Swinford
    @Steven_Swinford
    ·
    12m
    Exclusive:

    Here’s A36 of the WAB which has enraged Cabinet today

    It explicitly sets out path to a 2nd referendum via an amended motion, which it sets out as follows:

    ‘That this House agrees there should be another referendum before the withdrawal agreement is ratified’

    Steven Swinford
    @Steven_Swinford

    It’s explosive stuff.

    The WAB is in black and white proposing an amended motion for a 2nd referendum

    Here’s the killer line:

    ‘In this section ‘another referendum’ means a referendum provided for by *an Act of Parliament* (my emphasis)…’

  7. Norbold,

    I don’t understand either.

    If Labour supporters don’t want Labour to implement brexit, why would they vote Labour in a general election?

  8. Re May about to resign…

    How many times have we heard that before!

  9. JamesB

    “I’m really struggling to understand why some of the more loyal labour supporters, activists and commentators are unable to comprehend why so many voters have left them over this.”

    I think you misunderstood the point of my post. I was talking about some of the more committed Labour Supporters who post on here. I wasn’t referring to voters in general who may well have different priorities and, of course, you are right, Labour shouldn’t take any votes for granted but it is just that I am fairly sure some of the people on here who have said they will not vote Labour over Brexit will vote Labour in a GE because basically they agree with their, shall we say, non-Brexit policies and what they stand for in general. I was trying to make the point that what they are doing may harm Labour’s chances in future even though it they are fairly committed Labour supporters.

  10. @Danny

    “Surely, not in britain, where we gave up such things since Thatcher? isnt this another straw man argument?”

    ——

    Lol, it’s an important part of Corbyn’s platform.

    And in any case, we often give up things and revisit them. (Thatcherism itself incorporated earlier economics).

  11. According to Peston Theresa May has apparently gone to see the Queen……..
    :).

  12. @Norbold

    It looks like May is already in the bunker and has locked the door:

    https://www.standard.co.uk/news/politics/chief-whip-tells-1922-executive-that-theresa-may-will-not-stand-down-a4149111.html

    I can see the Tory backbenchers going nuclear when the results of the euro-elections come out on Sunday evening. Could we have a VoNC from JRM and the ERG next week?

  13. Davwel

    “The polls are giving us confident advice on which way to vote to secure a winner who is definite Remain but not SNP.”

    I can fully understand a Unionist not wanting to vote SNP, but they presumably wouldn’t want to vote SGP either, on that basis.

    So, if hoping to get the maximum number of Remainers elected, their choice is limited to Lib-Dem or ChUK (who have chucked in the towel).

    Doesn’t need any polling to come to a conclusion there.

  14. @ Robbie Alive

    It’s all guesswork but I would say that voting Green in North West is not certain to be a wasted vote.

    On the yougov mega poll, being the only one with a full sample size, the Greens were one of four fighting for the final two seats. However you have to put a lot of faith in Yougov being right when other polling companies are showing different results nationally and of course with Labour at 22% on their poll any further drop means you will be making sure of their two seats rather than them losing one.

    Honestly I think D’Hondt was designed to stop tactical voting at least from a who gets final seat basis.

  15. Looking forward to seeing the results and how accurate the polls are. It depends a lot on turnout – and whether the “don’t knows” decide to vote after all. I suspect we will see the committed on both sides vote, but that the turnout won’t be a lot above last time.

    When does the count take place? Is it from Sunday evening so it doesn’t get announced while the other EU Countries (apart from the Netherlands) vote?

  16. This whole Brexit Custerf*#k was started by a Tory not so cunning wheeze to see off Farage. Now, with the Tories deeply holed and Labour baling like crazy because neither can see a safe way to deliver Brexit that satisfies Leavers it could possibly fall to Farage to deliver Brexit. It’s a thought that makes my teeth curl, though you can’t but admire the poignant irony. My feeling is that if Farage did progress that far, he too would realise the problems involved, or maybe he already understands but either likes prodding dying horses or can’t bring himself to apologise.

  17. @ JJ – I fully agree we should have at least tried but current lot want to “play nice” (aka be the gimp) :<

    G.Clarke is an Arch ne0-liberal Remainer who is close to Hammond on the CON "biggest baggage" (aka toxic) list[1]

    The EU "rules" are repeatedly bent and broken by others (such as the largest member that deliberately runs a massive trade surplus – including in steel of course).

    However, the British Steel example also shows us how bad May's deal would have been. We're already being excluded from the "cabal" (going from junior "never pushed our luck" status to outright exclusion) yet they would continue to expect UK to play by their (subjectively applied) rules – under ECJ jurisdiction. Scr3w that!

    Oh yeah and CU would be even worse. If/when US-Germany trade war starts we'd be forced into the German front-line and turned into cannon fodder. F that!

    A jobs first Brexit is a No Deal Brexit – free of EU rules on State Aid and free of ECJ jurisdiction

    Corbyn and I would agree on this!

    [1] The damage they are doing to CON “brand” in areas like the NE.Eng is irrecoverable and why “Leave” will need a Boris/Raab-Farage pact. You let BXP contest unchallenged by CON in “left behind” areas with genuine commitment to state aid and reinvigorating those areas, “co-op” in areas of “mutual” appeal and CON contest unchallenegd in SE.Eng seats where CON MP votes down May’s deal (any CON MP who backs her toxic deal is then over the wolves of deselection or contesting up against BXP and all other parties – so even folks like Gauke and Lidington might lose their seats!)

    @ LEE MOORE – “There’s about four hundred people in the whole country who could name more than SIX current MEPs”

    Interesting YG just asked if folks could name just ONE of their current MEPs.

    Only 8% could name ONE of their MEPs

    (emphasis added)

    They didn’t test if folks got one name right so 8% is possibly even an exaggeration?

    So perhaps 400 in whole country that could name six?

    I can name 3, hopefully 4 of the new MEPs about to be elected in my area:

    Richard Tice
    Michael Heaver
    June Mummery (future MP for Great Yarmouth and minister for fisheries)
    Paul Hearn

    https://d25d2506sfb94s.cloudfront.net/cumulus_uploads/document/be7in6sh0q/YouGov%20-%20EU%20elections%20impact%20and%20knowledge.pdf

  18. Lee Moore (4:42)
    Great explanation of the free market.
    ———————–
    Shevii
    “This has moved the headline from Farage won by a bit to Farage wins by a landslide as well as having far-ish right much more heavily represented in the EU parliament than otherwise. ”

    So 17.4 million voters in UK are far-ish right? You live in a strange world.

  19. @Patrickbrian

    “Then we can move on to polling a Tory leadership contest and probably a Lib Dem one too – though everyone seems to have forgotten about that one for now :)”

    I pray we get a hat trick! :)

  20. In the news:

    “The prime minister wants the House of Commons to vote on her WAB — said to be half an inch thick — during the week starting June 3.”

    In Northern Irish slang, wab = penis.

  21. Prof Howard

    But does she have the balls to …… (insert your own punchline).

  22. I’ll be voting Labour. We need them as emboldened as possible to head off Brexit when the frothing loonies take over the Government.

    Quite soon.

  23. Trevors
    “I hope BXP are making that case in NE.England.”

    You need a history book not an atlas. The steelworks in NE England was the one that closed four years ago.

  24. That’s OR an atlas. B…y autocorrect

  25. Remainer Pop Quiz

    Which of the UK parties contesting the EPs actually has MEPs in the current EP coalition (ie MEPs who might actually have any impact of EP matters)?

    Name the UK party and the EP “party” without checking on google!!

    If you got it right (or had to check google) then maybe that effects which box you put an X in tomorrow?

    (ie if you want your MEP’s vote to count maybe consider making sure your vote counts)

    [JJ – you owe me!]

  26. Yes Peter and the Coalition did nothing about it even though EU rules did not prevent them, I think Cable was business secretary at the time as well.

  27. “Which of the UK parties contesting the EPs actually has MEPs in the current EP coalition (ie MEPs who might actually have any impact of EP matters)?”

    You mean the coalition that by some predictions is at risk of losing its majority? You’re rather fond of the phrase ‘all to play for’, in this case it’s perhaps actually relevant.

    That aside, I’m not sure voting on the basis of purely who or who isn’t governing right now is a particularly great way to go about things…

  28. Theresa May` position has worsened more than I was allowing when I put out last Monday morning some calculations on the Scotland 6 seats. And I reckon some voters will now desert CON here, since it is clear that Boris Johnson is favourite to succeed her. Also I have seen a letter in the local paper actually praising Nigel Farage.

    So instead of putting BRX in the mix for the final 6th Scotland seat, I shift CON to there. Which means my prediction is now 3 SNP, 1 BRX, 1 Lab and for the 6th seat it`s between LibDem, CON and Green in descending likelihood.

    Therefore Green tactical voters wanting Remain should vote LibDem to ensure CON are kept out.

    I am now hopeful of a good turn-out in NE Scotland, since the prolonged rain we have had since Monday morning has stopped. The elderly who don`t like wading through puddles or bothering with anoraks and brollies, might be tempted to the polling stations.

  29. Norbold

    As a Labour voter who switched to the Lib Dem’s in the local elections and will vote Green tomorrow I have to say that unless Labour switch to a clear Remain position they have lost me long term.

    I gave the party small donations during the run up to the 2017 General Election and fully backed their manifesto. However given the choice of a Labour Govt or remaining in the EU I would chose the latter.

  30. SteamdrivenAndy : My feeling is that if Farage did progress that far, he too would realise the problems involved

    You do realise that there are 167 countries in the world that manage to strugge by without being members of the EU ?

  31. Davwel – is the SNP 4th seat for 6th place possible with 10%?

  32. Chris in Cardiff
    Davies refused to give her his name and constituency and resorted to insults like “Thank God you are not my constituent” She was very persistent of course but she was not some loony bigot. Rule 1 of being an MP is to treat people with respect even if you disagree with them.

  33. @ PETERW – ??

    “workers at the company’s plants in the UK, in Skinningrove and Lackenby in the North East

    https://www.itv.com/news/tyne-tees/2019-05-21/steel-jobs-on-teesside-at-risk-if-government-talks-collapse/

    Perhaps you need “google” or a news feed? ;)

    I’m aware how hollowed out our steel industry was even BEFORE this latest announcement and how the EU state aid rules (and our own unwillingness to “bend” the rules) have been a large reason for the decline of this vital industry (as I’m sure most folks in NE England are!!)

    They are not th!ck racists they knew why they voted LEAVE and they know they want someone to get on with Leaving and start standing up for British job and British industry.

  34. @ Mike Pearce

    It is unlikely to be that simple a choice. I think you will be faced with a Tory/BXP Brexit or a Labour Brexit (although I don’t think it will come to a Labour Brexit anyway).

    Ultimately I think people voted Labour in 2017 knowing they would get a softer Brexit and hoping they would get no Brexit and didn’t want to waste their votes elsewhere. Let’s not forget that if Labour had come out for remain in 2017 there would probably be a 100 seat Tory majority now and Brexit done and dusted. Times do change and it may be different now but I think unless we see Lib Dems on 35% then the same applies now.

  35. Blimey! Andrea Leadsom will be a big miss on the front bench…

  36. Which ones haven;t we done yet?

    European Parliament voting intention:

    BREX: 27%
    LAB: 24%
    LDEM: 15%
    CON: 13%
    GRN: 8%
    CHUK: 5%

    via @KantarPublic, 14 – 21 May

    BREX: 35% (+9)
    LAB: 18% (-4)
    LDEM: 17% (-2)
    CON: 12% (-)
    GRN: 8% (-2)
    CHUK: 4% (-)
    UKIP: 2% (-1)

    via @BMGResearch
    No dates given

    European Parliament voting intention:

    BREX: 30% (+10)
    LAB: 25% (-8)
    LDEM: 15% (+8)
    CON: 12% (-8)
    GRN: 7% (+3)
    CHUK: 3% (-2)
    UKIP: 3% (-2)

    via @Panelbase, 14 – 21 May

    BREX: 38% (+4)
    LAB: 17% (-3)
    LDEM: 15% (-)
    CON: 12% (-)
    GRN: 7% (+1)
    CHUK: 3% (-)
    UKIP: 2% (-)

    via @OpiniumResearch
    Chgs. w/ 16 May

    BREX: 37% (+3)
    LDEM: 19% (+2)
    LAB: 13% (-2)
    GRN: 12% (+1)
    CON: 7% (-2)
    CHUK: 4% (-)
    UKIP: 3% (-)

    via @YouGov, 19 – 21 May
    Chgs. w/ 17 May

  37. Jim Jam

    Assuming that the Lib-Dems have picked up sufficient (probably Unionist Remainer) votes to get a seat, and BxP have gathered most of the Unionist Leaver vote – both of which seem likely – then the SNP would have to get double the BxP vote +1 to get 4 seats, and prevent BxP getting 2.

    That could happen (on the latest YG figures) If just over a third of those with a Lab or SGP VI voted SNP.

    Again (if YG is right!) then adding yet more votes to the LDs achieves nothing, except to give BxP a 2nd seat.

    All of which simply demonstrates that trying to guess what the electorate will do and advising people with the certainty that some employ is a worthless exercise (though fun to do!)

  38. BXP- 27-38
    Lab 13-24
    LD 15-19
    Con 7-13
    Green 7-12

    These are big differences and Yougov are on their own BUT possibly they have later polling, bigger samples sizes and my gut feeling they may be closer.

  39. TONYBTG YOUR COMMENT IS AWAITING MODERATION.
    Leftieliberal

    “I can see the Tory backbenchers going nuclear when the results of the euro-elections come out on Sunday evening. Could we have a VoNC from JRM and the ERG next week?”

    Parliament is in recess next week, unless that can be cancelled…..

    We really need a Jon Snow to finish May off in dramatic Game of Thrones style because she is completely convinced that her path is the right one and everyone else is wrong.

    Looks like the Queen of Drag-ons and Breaker of Promises has kicked the can for two more days at least.

    Ps. At time of writing Andrea Leadsom has just resigned, is this the fatal blow…

  40. JimJam
    “Yes Peter and the Coalition did nothing about it even though EU rules did not prevent them, I think Cable was business secretary at the time as well.”

    To be fair the final collapse is not one to blame the Lib Dems for. It was not quite four years ago. And so it was Javid. Although nothing happens overnight.

  41. “Parliament is in recess next week, unless that can be cancelled…..”

    It can be but it won’t be. They value their generous holidays as much as their four day weeks* and their snouts in the trough.

    * granted lots of them use this to pretend earnestly to be welfare case workers or social workers back in their constituencies but they would be better off doing the jobs they’re paid for and if not, probably do less damage down the pub.

  42. Looks like Cersei has bought herself some time by fleeing through a secret tunnel in the Citadel as the White walkers storm the walls!

    Peter.

  43. Peter Cairns

    “Looks like Cersei has bought herself some time by fleeing through a secret tunnel in the Citadel as the White walkers storm the walls!”

    Maybe the roof will fall in on her.

  44. Apparently the milkshake thing is getting serious:

    https://twitter.com/Steg68/status/1131246088403456005

    :D

  45. Any LAB-Leave (aka Corbynites) on UKPR or are all UKPR’s LAB VI the cosmo-metro types (aka Corbynistas)?

    RUDYARD was a genuine Corbynite but he was tr0lled off UKPR by the Corbynistas

    So whilst I disagree with the full Corbyn-McDonnell plan I am happy to called “Corbyn-lite” and agree with many of the reasons that Corbyn and McDonnell have been lifelong Eurosceptics.

    Perhaps some LAB VI should get out some history books and read up on the two old white men who lead their party and what they actually believe in (the “lite” version at least)

    Leave is not Left or Right but should IMHO simply be “post ne0-liberal” and take a mix of policies to work for the actual people who vote for their elected representatives – those being British people and UK MPs (ie no more kowtowing to unelected bureaucrats and the “cabal” in Brussels)

    The recent Welsh poll clearly showed us that BXP can eat into LAB heartlands and they don’t even have a manifesto yet. Just wait until they say 50million to rescue British Steel, Xmillion to rescue Y industry in LAB heartland Z. How is Corbyn going to respond when he wants to keep UK in CU (or have a new ref to keep us in full EU)?

    Yep, BXP will be after LAB VI and LAB seats but not Cardiff Central, Bristol West or Islington North.

    They’ll want “beer” socialists in “left behind” constituencies not the champagne version living off mummy+daddy’s inheritance.

  46. Leadsom gone first, but there will surely be others.

    Death by a thousand cuts. Surely it’s better to resign now and walk out with dignity?

  47. Leadsom gone first, but there will surely be others.

    Death by a thousand cuts. Surely it’s better to resign now and walk out with dignity?

  48. Oh what the hell lets go for it…

    If right now May is Cersei…then filling the rest of the cast!

    Peter.

  49. Wow and double wow.

    “Nigel Farage was reportedly trapped on his Brexit Party bus today after being approached by men ‘armed with milkshakes’.”

    Read more: https://metro.co.uk/2019/05/22/nigel-farage-trapped-brexit-party-bus-men-arrive-armed-milkshakes-9654486/?ito=cbshare

  50. The significance of a big Farage win is that it will probably rule out a stitch up referendum between “Remain” and “Almost certainly worse than Remaining if you support Brexit”. Remainers have pretty much convinced themselves that this will be the appropriate referendum, and all will be fine.

    But this will be hard to maintain if Farage wins big. On the other hand, if LibDem+Green+Change+SNP+PC is clearly more than Brexit+UKIP, then Remainers will convince themselves that they can get away with it.

    Meanwhile, the EU have no incentive to compromise.

    At the moment, the possibilities for the EU are:

    – Remain
    – Getting their first colony, as one of Verhofstadt’s people charmingly put it
    – Getting to decide if they actually want “no deal” if the UK rejects the above

    So it will stay put. At the moment, the EU can be confident that Parliament is not going to suddenly support a government in saying “no” to the UK.

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