Two voting intention polls in the Sunday papers. Deltapoll in the Mail on Sunday had CON 42%, LAB 38%, LDEM 6% (report here). Opinium in the Observer has CON 39%, LAB 42%, LDEM 5% (report here).

I expect rather more attention will be given to the poll from Opinium as the Labour lead is the first we’ve seen since July 2019. We’ve had a couple of polls showing the main parties neck-and-neck in recent weeks (there was another one yesterday from Redfield & Wilton, showing them both at 40%). Looking across the various polls it is clear that the two main parties were heading towards roughly equal levels of support and, therefore, normal margin of error was going to spit out a Labour lead soon enough.

The question is what impact this starts to have upon the political environment – assuming the pattern continues – voting intention polls this far out have little predictive value (4 years to go!), but do have an influence on how the parties are perceived to be doing by their own supporters, their own MPs and the media. It helps Keir Starmer to be seen as a winner, who has put the Labour party back into the lead. It risks doing the opposite for Boris Johnson, especially given one of his selling points to the Tory party was his popularity with the public.

5,657 Responses to “New voting intention polls from Opinium and Deltapoll”

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  1. Never been first

  2. Never been second

  3. it is clear that the two main parties were heading towards roughly equal levels of support and, therefore, normal margin of error was going to spit out a Labour lead soon enough.

    And presumably, given current events and government performance, it is equally likely (though of course not certain: events, dear boy…) that the movement will continue.

    The question for me is whether we are seeing an ’emperor has no clothes’ moment, where the previous solid level of Tory VI suddenly crumbles as this is perceived an an omnishambles government, or whether Tory VI remains unmoved and the Labour advance stalls as it runs out of LDs to mop up.

  4. These days I’m not sure polling means anything.Public seem to change their minds so quickly. Didn’t Miliband and Corbyn lead at times?

  5. Thank you AW for this site in general and for updating with the data and your commentary
    LOC ‘joy’ tempered by the Mail’s DELTA poll.

    Labour making some capital from the perceived threat to family Christmas; the shadow education secretary, unlike RLB has picked a topic with some appeal.

  6. Thank you AW for this site in general and for updating with the data and your commentary
    LOC ‘joy’ tempered by the Mail’s DELTA poll.

    Labour making some capital from the perceived threat to family Christmas; the shadow education secretary, unlike RLB has picked a topic with some appeal.

  7. This movement in the polls can be confirmed in the contact I have had when delivering Labour Party leaflets. While we are still not knocking on doors due to the pandemic, you can not avoid bumping into people in their gardens or clean cars and so on.

    In May last year and in December the reaction on the doorstep was beyond negative, it was so aggressive and hateful, at times I wondered if after 45 years of canvassing I was about to be physically attacked, this in a safe Labour Red Wall seat, which Labour held onto. There was no debate just hate, normally. Have always been able to have polite conversations even with those who would never vote a Labour. Now it is almost as if that poison has been drained and we are getting a positive response.

  8. Fieldwork for Opinium 23Sep (Pre-Rishi), Deltapoll 24-25th (Post Rishi) – possibly a factor?

    Within Opinium tabs then 19% (+1) of CON’19 are now DK although a few more have switched to LAB, 6% (+2%). 0% of CON’19 have moved to LDEM (-1)

    The CON’19 gains x-break has bizarrely moved the opposite way to the overall numbers, with CON now 2pt lead (+10) on seats they gained in 2019 (smaller sample MoE, etc). CON holds’19 seeing the biggest drop in CON VI.

    LAB under management possibly means he can win seats in the “Blue Wall” of Southern England – CHRISLANE will be pleased ;)

    Good poll for Sir Keir and LAB overall – come on Boris, get a grip!

    *Above all using V003 sheet that includes DK.

  9. Any one know what the figures for the last delta poll were?

  10. TREVOR
    Good Morning to you. Thank you for the mention.

    It is sunny down here in the land of Tobias and Conor; the latter person was on Radio 4 in discussion with Toby Young yesterday morning. Mr Burns was defending the Boris, while Toby, son of the great Michael Young who wrote Labour’s 1945 Face the Future manifesto, was critical of the PM, who does have too much on his plate, personally and politically.

  11. On the Opinium crossbreak Scotland has;
    Con 22%, Lab 17%, LibDem 4%, SNP 55%, Grn 3%.

    Rounding makes it 201% but Electoral Calculus puts it at Westminster;

    Con 0, Lab 1, LibDem 0, SNP 58, Grn 0.
    SNP 1 short of taking every seat in Scotland.

    The longer this keeps up the harder it gets to stop another Referendum whether people want one or not.


  12. Answered my own question.
    44% to 38% in favour of Tories July 10.
    So trend to Labour there as well.

  13. It’s not so surprising when all the media are giving it Welly, seizing on and fanning internecine half-rumours. Half the country wants a tighter lockdown, the other half wants it opened up. No govt can win in that situation. Starmer’s job is easy.

  14. Interesting interview with a representative from NHS providers this morning.
    Amongst other things he said survival rate in hospitals from covid has moved from around 65% to 80% which is significant.

    It also indicated that those saying that in three weeks time mortality will be around 100 a day when current hospital admissions are around 200 are being alarmist.
    Given that if you are going to die from covid you normally do so within three to four weeks I can’t see how the higher figure has been arrived at.

  15. @ PETER (SNP) – If Boris/HMG, HoC don’t want another Indyref then you won’t get one, not this parliament anyway.

    So what is Plan B. Anything from Cherry on the legal side?

    Sir Keir will back IndyRef2 if you win a majority in Holyrood’21 but he is not the PM.

    Either get the first ask for ref and NO from Boris out of the way soon or at least state a majority will in itself be a mandate for Indy.

    Polling might not be so strongly supportive of Indy (or SNP) forever – grasp the moment to Leave.UK, else we end up stuck with yee for at least a generation.

  16. It looks increasingly certain that the Tories have a Johnson problem and that he cannot do anything to change that. Buyers remorse setting in amongst backbenchers, Sunak carefully cultivating backbench support, full Brexit shock yet to hit and all less than a year after a convincing General Election victory.

  17. Labour need a niche party to take a few % out of Tory Vote share. Maybe Brexit Party/ Ukip resurgence. Or another niche party like proposed by actor Laurence Fox

  18. Hireton.
    Ships leaving the sinking rat time?
    He can take that weasel Cummings with him.

  19. @Peter Cairns

    “The longer this keeps up the harder it gets to stop another Referendum whether people want one or not.”

    Holyrood 2021 will be decisive, a big win for the SNP and a 2023 referendum possibly?.

    Another referendum is inevitable, although I suspect the Unionists will try and draw the sting with a simultaneous question on true Federalism.

  20. TW

    “The CON’19 gains x-break has bizarrely moved the opposite way to the overall numbers, with CON now 2pt lead (+10) on seats they gained in 2019 (smaller sample MoE, etc). CON holds’19 seeing the biggest drop in CON VI.”

    Using the figures from Opinium’s ‘VI baseline’, their ‘ConGain 2019’ sample shows a 3 point Lab lead (44-47), which is pretty much identical to the average this has shown in the last 5 Opiniums (44-46). This compares to a 10 point Tory lead in these seats at GE2019, hence a 6 point swing. It’s a small subsample (of 104) so very prone to big fluctuations.

    It would be useful to know what the baseline is for Opinium’s sample of ‘All seats labour has lost since 2005’. My guess would be that the Tories won these by an average of 20-25 points in 2019. Of their other sub-samples, I believe that ‘Con Gain 2019’ was 48-38 for the Tories at GE2019, Con Hold was 58-23, and Lab Hold 28-54.

  21. @ CHRISLANE – The regional x-breaks are worth a look. JAMES E provided some info on last thread and CMJ, if he’s around, usually looks at them.

    In latest Opinium the LAB have slashed CON’s lead in the South from 31% in GE’19 to only 6%. (changes since GE’19)

    CON: 49 (-5)

    LAB: 35 (+13)
    LDEM: 7 (-11)
    Green: 6 (+2)

    It’s actually less seats changes than folks might expect tho. Baker and Sharma might lose their seats and DANNY’s seat might turn Red but it would only likely turn 9 seats from CON to LAB.

    For Tobias and Connor they’d see their large majorities shrink but probably keep their seats – not even Blair in GE’97 managed to turn them Red, but it’s certainly not impossible Sir Keir can?

    London is moving the other way but again, due to the very safe status, this time LAB, in most London seats it would unlikely make too much change, CON taking 2-4 from LAB? Although the dead sheep IDS would maintain his lifelong hold on Chingford and Woodford Green surely it is time he retired?

    A roundabout way of saying the ‘South’ (including London) is starting to see Sir Keir as Blair2 (not Corbyn2) but the “Blue Wall” is much harder to chip away at. Maybe net -6 seats for CON (I’d previously though CON might lose net 3 but from London not rSouth)

    I would still expect the Midlands-North “Wall” to where the next GE is again decided.

  22. @ JAMES E – There are some differences between the V003 sheet (including DKs) and VIHeadline.

    My inspired guess is that in the “Northern Wall” a lot of CON’19, who were possibly xLAB (discussed at length) but then in places like London perhaps a lot of Corbynistas have moved to DK (not so keen on the “new management”)

    It’s possibly confusing in my posts. 9:34am was posted with a look into the DK issue. 11:14am is back to more normal way of looking at x-breaks (ie headline)

    As PETE B and other have commented then Sir Keir can win a lot of seats on Leaver ‘apathy’ but as JJ will have mentioned then to get an outright majority he needs to get more direct CON’19 to LAB’24 votes.

    LDEM? Disappearing and although Sir Keir as Blair2 is snaffling up their VI then it doesn’t help so much in seats as LDEM has become very “lumpy” (ie tactical voting) over the last few GEs.

    The “hope” that Sir Ed could be kingmaker to Sir Keir is more of a “dream” at the moment. Although post GE’24 then LDEM MPs get togethers should be able to adhere to the “rule of six” and instead of a small minibus they might all fit into one taxi ;)

  23. TREVOR.
    Thank you again.
    Yes, our seats down here even had a swing towards Tories in 1945, so not expecting change of seats in Bournemouth West and East.
    Labour have started to become respectable again with ‘non political’ voters.

    As always it is the ‘Midlands’ and ‘The North’ where GE 24 will be decided

  24. TW

    My own analysis by regions show Labour get roughly equal swings in the South, Midlands and North – I posted a few details from some Redfield and Wilton polls a few days ago, which showed the Tory vote holding up best in the South West and in Wales.

    Yesterday’s Opinium actually shows larger swings in the English Midlands(12%) and North (10%) than the 9% swing in their Southern sub-sample.

  25. @ JAMES E –

    I was looking at the new Opinium today but it is only one poll (column AC for ‘South’ in both VIHeadline and V003 sheet). FWIW then it shows CON ahead in Wales (but small sample size and with no disrespect to Wales then seat changes there might be 2-4 one way or t’other but it’s unlikely to be a deciding factor unless/until PC can start to replace LAB more widely as the ABC/Indy party)

  26. @ JAMES E – Also possibly a SW-SE issue?

    If SE (eg seats like both Milton Keynes) see Sir Keir as not Corbyn then younger folks worried about Corbyn’s tax rises etc might move to LAB but SW is a totally different kettle of fish. They might also be less keen on a “Clean Brexit” and tend to read the Guardian or Times (who have moved quite anti-Boris recently)

    On last thread I posted some thoughts on SW and how CON can and should seek to keep it Blue. Maybe not GSW thing but some “surf+turf” bungs to show SW that Voting.Leave in 2016 and 2019 was the right thing. ie “The SW remembers…”

    CON also need to do something about younger voters. IMO housing is the key to that kingdom and especially in SE and London.

    3.5yrs to next GE so all to play for

    If Boris doesn’t get a grip soon then perhaps CON need to move to a new manager? IMO Dom’s work is nearly done.. but keep Boris+Gove+Dom in control until after Holyrood’21 ;)

  27. Hopefully a polling company will undertake a larger than normal sample at some point so that rather than trying to extrapolate from very small cross-sample sizes with large margins of error we can have a poll with cross-samples which have a much lower margin of error. They don’t come along very often but maybe one or two companies may do some larger polling at some point, eg ‘a year on from the election what has changed’ etc.

  28. Labour must have sensed some turning in the last few weeks as (at least here in the NW) there has been a very strong push for recruiting members since the beginning of September.

  29. @ Peter Cairns (SNP)

    Read my post again. The entire media, left and right, is laying into Boris, fanning every ember, real or imagined, and in England at least, the public is split on the remedy. No one can win in that situation. Perhaps the media is not so hostile, or the public so divided, in Scotland.

  30. @ PTRP

    Very nice to see you back at the end of the last thread and sorry for your loss.

    As you must know by now, I appreciate your posts and they tend to dig deeper down into demographic changes over time compared to most who will look at polling trends in isolation.

    I think individual elections can buck the trends to some extent and we have a volatile electorate who have picked up on single issues in the last 2 or 3 Genereal Elections (mainly brexit) so it is certainly not beyond Labour to win back the red wall they lost in 2019 just by the government not having been very good or not achieved what was expected of them. This may be simply because of pro brexit/get brexit done moving to will not vote but ultimately Labour is going to have to start offering more to these areas if they want to reverse the demographic trend. Your guess is as good as mine as to how they could go about achieving this.

  31. Although more recently “clarirfied”[1] then…

    “Chancellor Rishi Sunak ‘argued England should break away from UK'”

    [1] More recent comments. “Now is not the time..” (but maybe post H’21, hopefully C19 is past tense by then?!?)

  32. Looking at the last 4 Opinium cross-breaks by geography supports the notion of a fairly even swing across England-outside-London. These polls average to around a 5 or 6 % Con>Lab swing across GB as a whole.

    There are, as expected big variances from one sub-sample to another, but the averages from the last 4 are:

    English Midlands: Con Lead by 8 pts (GE2019 saw Con lead by 21 pts)
    So a 6.5% swing.

    North: Lab lead by 18 pts (GE2019 saw lab lead by 4-5 pts)
    So again a 6.5% swing.

    South: Con lead by 10 pts (GE2019 saw Con lead by 31 pts)
    So a 10.5% swing.

    These figures are tempered by Labour making little-to-no progress in Scotland, Wales and London.

  33. Detailed analysis of OP demographics , and seat calculations are really academic , 4 years out from a GE.

    What is much more important & relevant, is what effect the headline VI will have on the Con Parliamentary Party.

    If BJ is being swayed by Whitty/Vallence, rather than Sunak, then he has accepted that disruptive economic effects will be a feature of the winter as he/they react to constantly changing infection patterns .
    He must be banking on his moonshot to get him out of that politically unsustainable policy.

    ST has an article about that project-they are throwing everything at it.

    If a rapid population wide test doesn’t appear BJ’s whole CV19 strategy is shot.

    On the other hand , he might suggest , we don’t hear the Sunak side quantifying the mortality rate they would accept , so that we can live without fear ( of the deaths of other people).

    Assuming there is a Brexit deal , the VI boost which BJ should get will, I think be very brief if The Virus still disrupts our economy & lives.

  34. Frosty

    We do already have properly weighted polls for Scotland, Wales, and London, and in each case it appears that there is only a 1-2 point Con>Lab swing; and in Scotland and Wales, this is down to the Tories losing support rather than Labour gaining.

    So with GB polling as a whole showing around a 5% Con>Lab swing, it seems reasonable that the swing in England-outside-London is a point or two higher. My analysis of aggregated sub-samples suggests that this is fairly even – perhaps somewhat higher in the South East.

  35. From the previous thread, welcome back @ptrp and condolences on your bereavement.

  36. @jonboy

    “Perhaps the media is not so hostile, or the public so divided, in Scotland.”


  37. Colin.

    From what I can gather any perceived threat to Johnson is more a media story than a reality.

    We should always take opinions in the media with a pinch of salt the latest opinium poll is a good example of the media in full tilt , not a mention of course of the delta poll which showed the opposite.
    It always surprises me especially on a forum dedicated to polling that a few make rather silly comments based on one rather small poll ,usually in the what ifs or in the next few months this or that is going to happen as if it fact rather than opinion.

    Johnson’s premiership is at present in his own hands the Conservative party are not about to ask him to go nor is there any such movement within the party to replace him.

    As to the pandemic well testing is improving and over the next few months no doubt it will be somewhere near where it needs to be, on top of that it looks like the death rate will be lower than the last peak because of treatments and greater control of the care home environment.

    Brexit still rumbles on but given the mood music over the last couple of weeks from Brussels has become more conciliatory it looks like some sort of deal is possible.

    What we have is a hostile media and opposition who have turned the pandemic into a political football for there own ends. Nothing new there of course but non of this really threatens Johnson at the moment.

  38. BREXIT

    No Swiss Brexit then, by 63 – 37:

    No other countries are thinking of leaving, looking at their polls. Plenty queueing up to join though.

  39. @ HIRETON

    It looks increasingly certain that the Tories have a Johnson problem and that he cannot do anything to change that. Buyers remorse setting in amongst backbenchers, Sunak carefully cultivating backbench support, full Brexit shock yet to hit and all less than a year after a convincing General Election victory.”

    Yes, but we must temper this with the reality that the Tories poll performance is nowhere near the depths plumbed by the hapless Theresa May.

    It’s going to be a rough ride with Covid, but if Boris brings home the BRINO bacon from Brussels then the economic impact of Brexit will be mitigated to the max.

    It’s what the Tories are going to offer as an USP post Brexit versus Starmer and his Blair-lite offerings that’s interesting.

    2024 is up for grabs in my view and the Tories need to get competent pretty damn quick.

  40. PTRP

    Sorry to hear of your loss, but welcome back.

    You may be interested to see Prof Mitchell’s new essay “The Scottish Question revisited” to be published on Thursday. He has a couple of articles trailing some of his ideas on Scotland’s constitutional position – but they have implications for how we might think about the wider principles of centralism/autonomy/subsidiarity, and the challenge for political parties.,scottish-labours-problem-is-not-its-leader-but-a-lack-of-vision

  41. Good afternoon all from a pleasant sunny Winchester.

    BoJo and his scruffy outlook are problematic. If you watch the right wing buffoon up against the Labour leader at P M Q’s then the problem is very evident. It’s like a wee sweaty rugrat being told off by a very smart and we’ll dressed teacher.

  42. Turk.


    You have Party insight which is not available to me.

  43. @SHEVII

    I agree individual elections and single issue items can seemingly buck the trend but I would argue that most single issues come down to if you identify as a social conservative or a social liberal as much of our economic arguments while can be seen a rhetorically different are often in practice a rounding error in terms of costs.

    If you look at say the Miliband/Balls budget Budget 10B of difference in a 660B budget is hardly going to make huge changes and yet it was called Marxist in the press and even Blair called it a left wing prospectus, Yet 15 months on everyone was essentially saying that is the new normal. Indeed I see this happening again.

    Much is made of the swing from CON>LAB but I think we have to accept that firstly a national picture does not give insight to what happens in different seats it is why I have used the Bristol North West versu Walsall as an example indeed one person on this site produced a better example where JLR plant where a constituency provides a lot of the workers voted remain and Labour and the constituencies that did not appear to gain voted leave and tory.

    The thing I see is that there is a change in the demographic of Labour a new middle class that see their status gained not from tax cuts and traditional Toryisms but from expansion of education they are seeing their towns being successful because the are outgoing welcoming to others and other soft polices that make them successful. These peopel ply their trade on those soft skills and interactions. Whereas the left behind towns don’t. There was an interesting sstudy performed in Florida as to why it was a booming state and they found that actually pumping money into an area would not make it ‘better’ it starts with the right set of people seeding the sort of things that make the place attractive. Part of that is on the people themselves.

    I often relate this to many of the changes that have occured in London. On my mums street in 1972 there were 100 houses and all were owner occupiers. there were 3 houses where the people could be called BAME my own family a family that was mixed race and a turkish family. If you looked at the school down the road it was an OK just about scraping through school. Today the school is an excellent school with high achievement it is also mostly BAME pupils and my street is most a mix of BAME and eastern europeans and there is actually litte of yor old style white working class cockney. The area is still know for poverty but I suspect they feel part of a bigger whole in London. I am not sure that someone in an ex coal mining town will feel connected to Leeds even though it is only 10 miles away and that lack of connectivity to any form of success is why I see the problem for Labour. In the end the connectivity for success is driven by education and that anyone who is successful tends to leave because they have assets that they can leverage for the move. I think that is why I am not certain that ANTY party can help the left behind towns. The reason they existed had gone and thus their ability to attract talent has gone also the skillset needed for success have changed and these communities are socially conservative and thus are against adapting. As in FL in the end is yuppies and creatives that seemingly drive change even when benefactors are social conservatives. I suspect one of the more interetsing points of GE19 is that Labour could win putney and lose the red wall kind of misses the point Labour did better in what was traditional tory suburbs because of that recognition.

    lastly I don’t think Labour offers anything that he left behinds haven’t already been given but I fear that they relate the lack of success of local goernment to the labour councils rather than the cuts to LGGs this is a double whammy for Labour in that they are seen to ‘fail’ locally and seemingly can’t get traction nationally.

    I think there are interesting times ahead


    I agree health and economics are somewhat interlinked but I also would say good governance with regards health is not really that expensive. That is why for example Cuba a very poor country has better infant mortality than many southern state in the USA. To that point. The same issues could have pertained to ebola or any the infectious diease. I often argue polio was eradicated not because of improved economics but because of improved medicines. Same with smallpox etc having strong economies often happen last in basis of health since good health promotes less children which gives you more money to spend on each child. improving mortality is a big key to improving education which in turn improves the economy. In scientific parlance often it is health that leads economic indicators

  44. Toby Ebert
    “No Swiss Brexit then, by 63 – 37:
    No other countries are thinking of leaving, looking at their polls. Plenty queueing up to join though.”

    You do know that Switzerland isn’t in the EU?


    The Swiss aren’t part of the EU. They were holding a referendum to end the free movement of people and it looks like voters have rejected to end free movement.

    That’s the EU for you… Reject cheap labour and say bye bye to trade deals.

  46. If the Tories grant Scotland IndyRef2, it will be when they feel the next General Election is lost and during the run-up. Get Scotland out of the way and they then only have to fight in England & Wales, and Scotland then becomes a massive Labour headache, while they (Tory) can sit on the sidelines as the opposition and carp, uttering little of any substance, much as Labour are doing now.

  47. I am not sure about the conciliatory messages from the EU. The weekend French newspapers (Ok, I read only two of them) are pretty un-conciliatory so is the SDZ (I haven’t had the time to read other German ones).

    It has to be added that these are not on the front pages.

  48. JONBOY

    “Perhaps the media is not so hostile, or the public so divided, in Scotland”

    I think what the public want is a clear and consistent message and proper leadership. They get that in Scotland with Sturgeon.

    I do have to laugh at the hostile media part though!! The Shi*e that is the Scottish MSM have been extremely hostile towards the SNP ever since the SNPs arrived on the political scene.

    The MSM in Scotland is ridiculous and half of it still hangs onto the dying embers of Scottish Labour and the other half is London-Centric despite the Scottish public moving away from both and growing some balls.

  49. Colin,

    I think Turk’s inside (albeit from a distance) insight is right that Johnson is under know threat. Like Blair in 1997 he has a bunch of new MPs who are sycophantically loyal and grateful to him for getting them Elected. Plus neck and neck or thereabouts is no big deal and even a defecit of up to 10% is not alarming.

    My assessment is that 2022 and the May Local elections is pivotal as a forced changed of PM in 2023 is probably too late to recover the deficit that would have to have opened up to induce that forced change.

    My judgement is that if he does go, therefore, it will be in 2022 sometime and probably by conference to allow an inauguration.

    Views on whether this will happen in 2022 are naturally affected by partisan outlooks but that 2022 is the most likely time if it is to occur is intended as a non-partisan assessment on my behalf.

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