A very quick update on voting intention polls over the last few weeks. As usual August is a relatively quiet period – opinion pollsters have holidays too. The fact that we have a new Prime Minister hasn’t made much change to that. In August so far we’ve had five voting intention polls:

BMG/Independent (Dates TBC) – CON 31%, LAB 25%, LDEM 19%, BREX 12%, GRN ?
ComRes/Telegraph (11th Aug) – CON 31%, LAB 27%, LDEM 16%, BREX 16%, GRN 4% (tabs)
Survation (11th Aug) – CON 28%, LAB 24%, LDEM 21%, BREX 15%, GRN 3% (tabs)
Opinium/Observer (9th Aug) – CON 31%, LAB 28%, LDEM 13%, BREX 16%, GRN 5% (tabs)
YouGov/Times (6th Aug) – CON 31%, LAB 22%, LDEM 21%, BREX 14%, GRN 7% (tabs)

Note that the BMG tables aren’t up yet, hence I don’t know the level of support for the Greens or their fieldwork dates. These polls continue to show the boost in Conservative party support following Boris Johnson’s accession filtering though. It is the first “Post-Johnson” poll for BMG and Survation, and they show the Conservatives up by 3 and 5 points respectively. We’re now at a point where the most recent polls from all the regular polling companies show the Conservatives back ahead, though the size of their lead differs given the variation in figures between pollsters.

Normally I would be speculating about how long the government’s honeymoon boost would last. It’s not really the case here given how many political events are going to be crammed into the next few months. Events will likely preempt its natural unwinding: whatever diplomatic negotiations or stand offs occur between the government and the EU (starting with the G7 meeting this week), whatever Parliamentary moves there may be against the government or against No Deal, the party conferences, whatever preparations or announcements there may be on No Deal and, of course, the actual outcome at the end of October. The current levels of party support seem rather irrelevant in the face of that – the Conservatives are probably happy to have a lead at the moment, but there are ten weeks ahead of us that are packed with events that can throw everything up in the air.

1,511 Responses to “Voting Intention Update”

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  1. @EOTW @DunhamIII

    “He is not deranged.”
    I beg to differ.

    Beat me to it!

  2. Good morning all from a rather pleasantly warm PSRL.

    @Millie – I tend to agree re his plan being on agreeing some minor changes with us leaving on 31st October and them him calling an election based on delivering Brexit (I remember posting something along those lines back in June), Whilst that’s plan A, his narrative may be torpedoed by events at Westminster next week which will lead him (in my opinion) to go for plan B – GE on 17th October.

  3. As to the interim interdict decision in the Scottish courts if the law is anything similar to that in England and Wales then I am not at all surprised by the decision:

    The approach of the courts on interim injunctions in England and Wales is based on the questions set out in the case of American Cyanimid Co Ltd v Ethicon Ltd [1975] AC 396 which are:

    (1) Is there a serious issue to be tried? This requires the claimant/petitioner’s case to be taken at its height. It is likely that the court would consider this a serious issue because of the complex arguments advanced involving a significant constitutional question and it is not obviously without merit. (First stage to the claimant/petitioner)
    (2) Will damages provide and adequate remedy? Clearly the answer to this would be no! This Could not be the case in a question of constitutional propriety which might result in an irreversible change in the UK’s constitutional arrangements (so two points up for the claimant/petitioner).
    However these two points only get the claimant/petitioner over the line, if these aren’t crossed the application must be refused. At the next stage (which is the one on which most cases that reach court revolve) the court must consider the balance of convenience
    (2) The balance of convenience is decided (if tis is equal then the court will favour the status quo) at this stage the court is entitled to consider any relevant matter including the relative strengths of the parties cases. Just from the outside I would have thought that the Judge would be unlikely to have considered strength of cases at this point, however the key element could be that the case can be heard, and therefore a full interdict ordered, before the action which the government intends to take comes into effect, whereas to impose an interim order would prevent the government taking any steps in the preparation for the action thus, potentially interfering with its position if the government wins on the main action.
    With that in mind I am not reading anything into the interim decision as to its relationship with the final outcome. I have won permanent injunctions for a number of clients when I was at the Bar where the interim application had been roundly defeated!

  4. Increased tension and possibility of violence in NI.

    “”Anything that brings the border issue into question in Northern Ireland brings tension,” Ms Gray said.

    “I think in the last few weeks, probably since the new Cabinet, the new PM and his announcements (on the exit date) that ‘this is October 31, this is what we’re looking at’, I think generally you can almost feel at bit of anxiety rising across society.”

    Ms Gray said policing the border in significant numbers to support any checks or controls that might be required in a no-deal scenario would bring risks for officers.

    “If questions of the border are being brought into play that does bring with it pressures,” she said.”


  5. New thread

  6. @ BRXT

    “So you can ignore the Referendum result”

    Not exactly. If the referendum had been a “mandatory” one, because Vote Leave overspent and we’re fined for doing so, automatically (like an MP election) it would have to be re-run. However, because the referendum in 2016 was legally only “Advisory” – no re-run is required. It seems to me that the Leave side have promoted an advisory referendum from “advisory” to the status of “Holy Writ” that cannot be reviewed and re-visited. They are definitely “having their cake and eating it” because they illegally overspent but because of the technicality that it was only “advisory” rather than “Mandatory” they are having it their way both ways. I wish the 2016 Referendum had been “Mandatory” because if so we’d have to have it again without illegal spending skewing the result and now that we know much more. If it was a Leave result again on that basis I’d accept it as a properly democratically arrived at decision.

  7. Peter W

    Thanks! That makes sense (both in terms of the grammar and analysis).

  8. @Dunham111

    “When push comes to shove, the EU will try to shaft the UK.”

    Of course they will. They have a position to maintain. Do you really think the US would be any different? The UK any different if the boot is on the other foot?

    Bear in mind that the UK started all this, the US has practically declared it will shaft the UK to get its own way, and that the UK was already part of the EU, so had a hand in things if it wanted it.

    Of course, the definition of ‘shaft’ changes from nation to nation, and situation to situation. Albion has been perfidious, as always. They want their cake, and they want to eat it too. They want all the up sides, and no downsides.

    Remember back in 2014, when Indyref folk said they would take their share of UK debt? Suddenly the amount of regional debt was a big thing. Scotland had a fiscal black hole, and the UK was running a normal deficit.

    Now we have the oddest data suggesting that more than half of UK deficit is in Scotland. 8% of the nation is generating 60% of the deficit? Really? The part of the nation with the oil is costing the whole the most?

    Once again, Scotland is the one nation on earth that is poorer for having oil. Who’s shafting who?

  9. [email protected]: I am merely agreeing with the esteemed political commentator Peter Hitchens, who stated in 2015 that “The EU is the Continuation of Germany By Other Means”.

    He is not deranged.

    Well, argue the case, then, rather than post deranged “Europa, Europa über alles, Über alles in der Welt” smears.

  10. Obvious time to call for an Election, avoiding not being allowed to put the same motion twice, is when Parliament returns for the Queen’s Speech!

    As it’s a New Parliament no problem asking again but;

    If Boris really has a bold new programme for Government possibly zero tariff low tax turbocharged WTO make Britain great again, then what better to fight an election on!

    If it’s more bluff and mumble with little substance then it will show it was only ever about thwarting Parliament and then he’s in trouble.

    I suppose if your cynical you’d think he wants it before the Queens Speech because it was always just a gambit!


  11. The risk for the Conservatives is beyond 2019. In the short term they might get a majority or flop and lose badly in such a one off one issue election.
    Even if they win a majority they would risk losing lots of constituencies to the LIb Dems in the South/ South West for a generation and might struggle to hold on to any northern constituencies they gained from Labour next time . Hence they would have lost the traditional core vote/ stronghold areas they had previously relied upon.

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