There are three new polls tonight, and they all show a post-budget swing towards the Conservatives.

YouGov/Sun: CON 39%(+2), LAB 32%(nc), LDEM 18%(-1)
ComRes/Independent: CON 37%(nc), LAB 30%(-2), LDEM 20%(+1)
Opinium/Express: CON 38%(+1), LAB 28%(-2), LDEM 18%(+3)

YouGov’s daily poll for the Sun has a 7 point lead, up from 5 in their Sunday Times poll and equalling the highest they’ve had the Conservatives this month. ComRes show the Conservatives unchanged, but Labour dropping two since the end of last month. Opinium have a ten point Conservative lead.

The changes themself are not massive, but every poll since the budget has shown a trend back towards the Conservatives. There seems little doubt that the budget has shifted things back towards the Tories a bit. The question now is whether it lasts, or whether it is just a brief downwards blip for Labour that will pass as new events (like the Conservative tax announcement or whatever coverage tonight’s Chancellor’s debate gets) take over the political news agenda.

UPDATE: Lib Dem figure from Opinium corrected (you’ll have to wait till tonight for tonight for it to get corrected in the sidebar)

508 Responses to “YouGov, ComRes and Opinium show Tory lead growing”

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  1. All still to play for

  2. I predicted this lead earlier – only a blip and will return to 4 points in a couple of days especially after Osborne’s performance under goes scutiny.

  3. While it feels like ‘normal service is resumed’, a batch of just five polls doesn’t necessarily constitute a trend.

  4. I think it depends how the public viewed tonight’s debate. If Osborne was perceived as worse than the polls may slide again, if him and Darling come out looking equal then this may continue.

  5. Average of these 3 polls, with changes from the 2005 election:

    C – 38% (+5%)
    Lab – 30% (-6%)
    LD – 18% (-5%)
    Others – 14% (+6%)

  6. As I said on the previous thread I await tomorrows poll with interest. I will be very disappointed if the YG figure for the Lib Dems has not increased significantly after tonights debate.

  7. The tories are not benefitting by a big increase in their vote… this will still worry them

    ICM 8%
    YG 7%
    Cres 7%
    Opinium 10%

    Is there another I have forgotten?

    these four average at an 8% lead…. I’ll have go away and tinker with a swingometer but that is I think HUNG PARL.

    Tory % still doesnt seem to get anywhere near 40%. Maybe tonight’s debate & tax cut will change that?

  8. Confirmation, if any were needed, that it’s still the economy that sways the voters polled. Labour will need some good news in the next few weeks. At least this makes it clear where the emphasis needs to be.

  9. A brief glance through various opinions of the Chancellor debate would seem to suggest that Cable was significantly ahead, with Darling and Osborne more or less level, although there has been more negative reaction to Osborne than Darling. In a logical world, the LibDems would gain a couple of points from both, but who can tell how it will play out over the next couple of days?

  10. What I thought was telling in the debate last night was that during the summary statements at the end, the only person to get a round of applause was Cable after he knocked the Tories for wasting North Sea Oil revenue, selling off the utilities and just wanting to help out their “wealthy backers”.

    Makes me think that Cameron hasn’t really succeeded at “detoxifying the brand” of the Conservatives.

  11. WMA 38:31:19. One month trend remains flat, 2 week not convincing either. Visually it looks as though the downtrend in the CLead stopped on the 25th but it is far too early to tell.

    The debate worked well for all 3 paticipants (if Darling were PM Labour would be in much better shape) but I don’t think it will change much. Osborne’s NI change will be a vote winner: quibbles about affordability when there is so much clear govt waste won’t wash.

    But we shall see…

  12. would like to know what the audiance figures are. doubt it was great as it was on the backwater channel of C4 and clashed with the soaps eatsenders and Corrie. Sad but probably true

  13. Peter Bell – remember much of tomorrow’s poll will have been conducted prior to the debate, and the overwhelming majority of people didn’t watch it. It’s impact may be how it is reported in the newspapers tomorrow, in which case even less will show up tomorrow’s poll. If there is an impact, you may not see it until Wednesday.

  14. Eoin Clarke:

    An 8% lead would probably be enough for a small Tory majority if there is a larger swing in the marginals.

    In 1992 the swing in the marginals was double the national swing: 4% vs 2%.

  15. Yougov shows no change to Labour while the other two both show -2.

    Yougov shows -1 for the Lib Dems while the other two both show 1+


  16. “What I thought was telling in the debate last night”

    Incidentally, the future’s great, you won’t have seen it yet but Boris Johnson slipped on a banana skin outside City Hall on Tuesday morning, it was caught on camera.

    Absolutely hilarious.

  17. For me it’s a hung parliament.
    The range of MP’s, from a tory perspective, would be a tiny majority i.e. 330 seats, to Labour being marginally the largest party i.e. 280 tory seats.
    I would guess that would give a range in the overall share of the vote for the tories being anywhere between 36% and just over 40%.
    That 4% or so of votes would equate to around 1.4 million of votes cast.
    What IMO will decide the outcome of this GE will be how many floating voters, who leaned towards Labour last time, decide to vote along the lines of
    a. Of-course this govt. and this PM aren’t perfect, but which govt. and PM ever are ?
    b. Do we like / trust the tories enough to risk change at this delicate time ?

    In short, as the old saying goes, “better the devil you know” ?

  18. if I were a Conservative supporter I would still be worried that they are still not hitting 40%

    however it is also slightly worrying for Labour that they appear to be down to 30% again

  19. Most probably the present situation is Cons 38 Lab 30 Lib Dems 19/20

  20. Wonder if all those posters who have been attacking the Yogov daily poll now think they are ok again because they are now seeing a rise in their supported party?

  21. 6 and a half weeks and it is still an open race. I think the affect of the debates will take a few days to sink in as media coverage etc picks up on it.

  22. I was looking back at the the report by Anthony Wells posted on March 23rd on the effect of previous budgets.

    Clearly there has been a small shift to the tories that is quite akin to 2007 which wasn’t bad for Labour, certainly not as bad as 2008 and 2009. Labour might be a bit relieved about that and the Conservatives will be relieved that the narrowing has currently eased

  23. A mini budget bounce confirmed then, though pretty small movement. Opinium is not politically weighted so will be all over the place – I tend to ignore. Lead still around 7-8%, having crept to 6 briefly in the UKPR average.

    Will be next Sunday before we know if it will last.

  24. Anthony when were the polls done?

    Interesting that the CON numbers differ by 2 while LAB and LD differ by 4 margin – highest to lowest.
    YOUGOV Lab % did not change.
    Is it just different methodologies or just MOE

  25. There has been a shift to the Conservaives since the budget. I think it’s accepted that a drop in Labour support follows the PBR and Budget so this shift is not unexpected.
    We now wait to see the trend over the next week or so,but my guess would be the same as Chris’s – this isa blip and the polls will close again.

  26. Osborne bombed in the Chancellor deabte, I think this will have an impact on any Tory recovery, as will their National Insurance Tax policy. The British public are not fools, they will realise that it don’t make sense in the context of the wider Tory message, or the economic climate.

    May I congratulate you as a realist and a good sport Amber. As a regular Labour contributor on this site you have taken these polls as not very good news. The comments some of the usual suspects make are just silly and dont do sensible Labour supporters justice.

  28. Percy – looking up the dates now to add them to the list of polls.

  29. Tonights YOUGOV is particularly strange.

    The Labour vote was unchanged.

    Where did the Tories pick up 2% from?

    Did BNP or UKIP suffer a dip?

    ICM/YG have Tories on 39% that is heading back towards majority territory

  30. BtW i did notice the -1% on the yellows

  31. So 39 is not near (or indeed ‘anywhere near’) 40 ??

    Labour have played their budget. LibDems have played Vince [snip – AW] (and given a good warning to Cameron that the LDs will side with Labour in the debate). Osborne is still standing intact.

    What is left? How many more shots in the locker?

    Tomorrow is the last day in March. How long to April 5th – which is the last day of the campaign. 36 days? 36 days with one poll putting labour on 28 another on 30 and one on 32. Is there really a groundswell of a move to put Gordon back in?

  32. Prediction for next ICM poll Con 39 Lab 29 Lib Dems 21

  33. @Anthony
    “Peter Bell – remember much of tomorrow’s poll will have been conducted prior to the debate, ”

    Anthony, thanks for the info. Can you confirm the approx polling period for each YG poll so that I can better understand whether any specific event has had an effect on the poll.

  34. @Trevorsden,

    your right about the 39% when I saw 7% lead I lazily though a -1% Lab a +1% tory sorry!

    @Amber, Sue , AL J – ICM and YG had a 31.5% average for labour… for sue’s magic 34% its still only 2.5% off

    Tories magic 40% is 1%….. I use the word ‘magic’ tongue in cheek before the die hard psepologists bite me….

  35. Trevor you’ve been in your den too long ;-)

    You’d better check your calendar.

  36. Eoin
    It’s of course ‘others’ that vary a lot in each – we have 14, 11, 18 (the last from Opinium is greater than Lib Dems.

    I don’t know when the survey days were (except YouGov) but those are greatly more at variance than MOE. I think Opinium looks the doggiest.

  37. @Geriant. Please stop partisan rants. The “online voting” showed even support for all 3. Lots of consensus.

    @All: please remember the 3% MoE. If 2 polls are taken on the same day with identical methodology the results will vary by roughly 3%. So small changes between one poll and another are meaningless.

  38. The variability of the YouGov polling is very surprising – only last week we had a 2 point margin which has now risen to a substantial 7 point lead for the conservatives. This level of variability must raise significant questions with their methodology given that there has been very little to change voting intention over the past few weeks.

    On a separate note, the PB website are suggesting a further delay in the planned election date with speculation that it could be put back to June 3rd. Given that this date is in the middle of half-term week with many families planning holidays, could this have an impact on voting in the general election? For example, which voters are more likely to be on holiday during this week? My guess would be that this could affect Conservative voters more than Labour…..maybe?

  39. @Howard

    I suspect Comres is the dodgiest, I really hope they didnt take their smaple from the crowd who gave their immediate reaction to the budget. It had millionaires voting for taxes…. do’ya remember?

  40. Eoin:-

    “that is I think HUNG PARL.”

    “”ICM/YG have Tories on 39% that is heading back towards majority territory”

    I know-it’s “nuanced ” again……

    …..but why not just slow down a little Eoin & think things through first.

    You are becoming a tad hyper-and it’s militating against your usual thoughfulness.


  41. Andy JS

    I’d expect 8% lead (to still not be enough, though very close. It would depend critically on how well the Lid Dems hold up. The 6.5% swing notionally required to win does not differentiate between Labour and Lid Dem seats.

    23 of the 120 seats the Tories need to win for a majority are Lib Dem held (another 2 or 3 are Scottish seats). At the extreme, if the LDs and Nats hold all of their current seats, the Tories need to win another 23 from Labour – requiring a 7.98% swing – that would need up to Edinburgh North and Leith to turn Blue (which ain’t going to happen!). It really is very difficult for the Tories to win outright.

  42. The trend, very gradually across all polls is for the Conservative lead to grow – I think we can say with some confidence that Labour has been damaged by the budget.

    If the trends of the past two post budget periods are anything to go by Labour will not recover and it’s downhill all the way to polling day.

  43. Mitz / Great Gonzo,

    Comments on the Channel 4 site would appear to indicate that Vince Cable had the best response, but will it actually swing many voters ? If so, which ones ?

    I suspect that, despite his digs at Osborne, Cable will win more votes from Lab than from Con – especially disillusioned Lab supporters.

    On the other hand, he may well alienate many others who conclude that since LDs are more likely to support Lab than Con, then an LD vote is a vote to keep Brown as PM.

    I would expect some boost for LDs in YouGov daily polls this week, but no negative effect on Con lead over Lab.

  44. There is talk tonight over on Political Betting that Brown may yet delay until June 3rd. Interesting to see if that will be the case.

    To me it is looking like the best has passed for Labour. In tonights debate the “weakest link” scored exactly the same as Alistair Darling and only marginally behind Vince Cable so it can only get better for the Tories from here on in?

  45. Where the hell did all that lot come from?

  46. Eoin
    I just meant the ‘others’ figure. I hope my arithmetic is correct -check someone please?

  47. Trevorsden

    You are entitled to your views on Cable but they are just views and it seems across the political spectrum people don’t agree with you.

    However, mustn’t get upset by the minority who try to be partisan here (really, what is the point?).

  48. “Where did the Tories pick up 2% from?
    Did BNP or UKIP suffer a dip?”

    Tories losing/gaining votes from UKIP I can imagine, but haven’t the BNP been picking up votes in mainly labour supporting areas, judging by the Euro Elections for example?

  49. Pardon me but critic of YG that I am – how can anybody say that this poll is ‘strange’??

    Do tories always have to pick votes up from labour? There is an unprecidented number of ‘others’- there is plenty of options of where all the votes might have come and gone from.

    Geraint – ‘National Insurance Tax policy’ — Darlings policy is to plug the spending gap before the election with a tax on jobs – hitting the middle classes and employers and ultimately jobs.
    Osborne is pointing out that you can cut out inefficiencies highlighted by Darrling now, not next year, and prevent this attack on jobs. Why should Darling subsidise inefficiencies by a tax on the middle classes and jobs?

  50. Peter Bell – it depends when the quotas get filled and when panel set it live, but the switchover is around about 4pm-5pm

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