Sunday polls

Two polls in the Sunday papers: YouGov have topline figures of CON 41%, LAB 36%, LDEM 14% – which is still very much within the margin of error of the CON 42%, LAB 35%, LDEM 15% figures that YouGov have been floating around for the last few weeks.

There is also a OnePoll survey in the People with topline figures CON 40%, LAB 30%, LDEM 23%. Regular readers may recall I gave these no credence to their polling during the election campaign, given did not publish the necessary information to judge whether their sampling and methodology were likely to produce representative findings. In the event their final poll bore virtually no resemblence to the election result, with shares of CON 30% (out by 7), LAB 21% (out by 9) and LDEM 32% (out by 8) – in the same way as I do not know how they conducted polling prior to the election, I have no idea if they have changed their methods since then.

Rumours of ICM and MORI polls tonight were false apparently, though both are due polls in the coming week.

172 Responses to “Sunday polls”

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  1. Actually Ben, I just read your post again and realise you said there are few Lib voters who will vote Labour.

    Well, that’s just silly. A lot of Lib voters vote Lib because they know Labour can’t win ion their area!! In my seat alone, this accounts for about 8,000 votes!!

    The 6% Lab have gained since the election are probably almost all Lib voters.

    Of course there are many Lib voters who will never vote Lab for the reasons you suggest, but to say “few” would is ridiculous.

    Unless I was the only person in the country who previously believed the Libs were a left of centre party, many WILL now vote Labour as they feel there is no other option.

    Apparently, 6,600 of the 20,000 new Lab members since the election were disenfranchised Libs

  2. Amber Star,

    He got told off repeatedly by the chair for refusing to listen to the chair and butting-in. I would be very interested to know where the positive feedback came from.

  3. Nick Hadley,

    Although not a Tory, I am certainly anti-Labour and I fear David Miliband. Aside from a slip-up with the challenge that never was and the fact that he’s more solid that oustanding in the charisma game, he’s a terrifically strong candidate. Youth + experience + calm + backing of the Labour power barons = a fearsome candidate.

    My advice to Labour supporters would be this: think about PMQs, think about debates and think about interviews. Who will best able to cope under the tremendous pressure? Many of the most effective leaders of the TV era haven’t been really charismatic, but had the ability to handle pressure. Thatcher was unlikeable, but was brilliant at interviews and PMS. Blair was likeable and charismatic, but his best gift in my opinion was interviews.

    I can see almost all of the candidates making Brown-esque mistakes and getting ratty with the press, except DM. He seems to have come to terms with the fact that not everyone is going to like him and knows how to just press (excuse the pun) on. That quality really makes a difference, especially over the long course of a whole parliament. It’s a cliche, but it’s a fact: getting back into government is a marathon, not a sprint.

  4. Sue,
    I didn’t use the word ‘voters’ anywhere in my post. Yes, there are natural Labour supporters who the LDs persuaded could vote LD to stop the Tories who will go back to Labour, but that wasn’t what I was talking about.

  5. Unfortunately and typically, my post on Lib Dem votes going different ways under STV, was interpreted as some form of defeatist post instead of a factual one citing evidence of where such voting systems exist

    What the replies failed to acknowledge or even think about, is that the 43% Tory vote and the 35% labour vote will also go in diiferent directions, including liberal ones.

    Before the last election 59% of people said they would vote Lib Dem if they thought ‘they had a chance of winning’. That vote could clearly only come about at the expense of the other two main parties.

    So please don’t be deluded, we have a plurality of political opinion which is not to be glibly summarised as ‘anything but’ (fill in Lab or Con).

    They are not being rewarded by our present system, which is why they float from one end to the other seeking solace. They won’t get it and the confidence polling shows they know they won’t get it under the present arrangement.

  6. Ben – “I get the impression there are few left leaning LibDems who will ever join Lab.”

    Alright, forget voters then, the figures we’re all here to discuss make that a silly statement.

  7. Sue
    I am not sure about ‘joining’ but I am sure they are considering ‘supporting’ Lab where they feel they can be effective with their vote.

    But as was pointed out the reverse still applies, in five years time, peopel will be as reluctant to vote in a way that slings their patch (if they know where that is) left or right as ever. The tactical vote will survive, beacause under FPTP, any other action is disenfranchising petulance.

  8. @RichardP
    Thanks for the correction about the german system. however I cannot agree that as you describe it it is anything like real PR. For example if you take the results of the last election in UK and apply the german rules then the SNP might have finished up with 11 seats and UKIP with none although UKIP got almost twice the vote of the SNP – that cannot be described as either fair or as “reasonable PR”.

    My proposed system would not require thousands of MPs particularly if the number of constituenccies was reduced to about 400 – making all the seats the voting size of the IOW and the lowest total of votes to qualify for any AMS seats was 1 %. That is prettty close to PR!

  9. Glad to see the “pupil premium” is going ahead.

    This will help the Lib’s polling surely?

  10. RichardP

    Sorry for the very late response but i don’t spend all day on here – I have other interests – for example Iwas at the Citizens Advice Bureau this morning. Incidentally that (CAB) is an excellent example of the the Big Society which just goes to show that the BS is nothing new (CAB is 70 yrs old) and that it can be made to work very well

  11. I have taken a first pass at the effects of the boundary changes throughout all the UK & Ireland now.

    A lot of it is just number crunching, based on maths type assumptions rather than real local knowledge – but for what it’s worth my interim conclusion is:

    CON -11
    LAB -29
    DEM – 4
    NAT+ OTH -6

    The above is very much what people expect to happen. CON make out like bandits & LAB gets by far the worst of it.

    But when I take a look at the votes that will be pushed out from the lost constituencies, a different picture emerges:
    CON -15
    LAB -20
    DEM -9
    NAT+ OTH -6

    This is a first pass, & I’m hoping lots of people start looking into their own areas & feeding back their local knowledge – but until I have more time & info., I am concluding that the changes are traumatic for Labour initially but (with a little luck) the outcomes could be better than expected. 8-)

  12. @Johnty,
    “Labour could of course refuse to take part or demand that Clegg is removed – now how would that play with the uncommmitted 30-40% of the electorate?”

    Well, in the past, when a major party has refused to take part in televised debates, it’s meant that the debates haven’t taken place at all. I think the same would happen again if Labour rejected the terms – I don’t think the broadcasters would have a debate with an empty chair: I suspect that would be rather risky from the point of view of their legal obligations.

    And also in the past, I don’t think the fact that one or the other side has prevented the debates from going ahead has ever had any great effect on their standing with the country. Obviously, it would be a bigger risk today, but perhaps not as great a risk as you’re suggesting.

  13. The debates will always go ahead now.

    It would be more than any party could risk to not be there.

  14. Some polling about Lib attitudes toward the coalition by ComRes for Newsnight

    h ttp://

  15. “On the scale of the planned cuts, more than half of all people (57%) agreed that the coalition’s proposed departmental cuts of at least 25% were too severe.”

  16. @ Sue

    Did you see the AV referendum question thread just up?

    Anthony also notes that 58% Dem voters say they definitely wouldn’t have voted Dem, had they known about a ConDem coalition. 8-)

  17. Wrong way around, Sue – 58% of those who said they voted LD on May 6 said they still would have done so, if they’d known there would be a Con-Lib coalition.

  18. (Sorry that should have been to Amber Star)

  19. Amber,

    While I understand what you are trying to do with your estimate of effect of boundary chanegs, may I suggest that if we have a combination of new boundaries plus a switch to AV at the next election, then all your efforts are wasted. It is futile to second guess how second / third preferences will pay out in seat boundaries which do not yet exist.

    Some time ago (well over a year ago) there was extensive discussion on this site of different polling systems (and the alleged in-built bias of current boundaries). One of the points I made back then – and which I believe will still hold true in 2014/5 – is that if there is AV, then we may find that the distribution of first preferences is wildly different from previous elections. I have no doubt that we would see a big shift away from the major parties (Con / Lab / LD and SNP / Plaid) to minor parties – including BNP, Green, UKIP and all manner of minor parties / independents .

    After all, what has a voter to lose by “lending” their vote to a fringe candidate knowing that their preference between the two front runners at position 6/7 on the ballot paper will have just as much weight as a first preference vote which does not get transferred ?

    Of course for people like you and me, our vote will just go to our first choice and stay there. But not every voter is that committed to their preferred cause.

  20. It really doesn’t matter whether people though left or right. Most people believe what they want to believe. But chosing a side will definitely lose half the vote.

  21. PAUL H-J

    “Of course for people like you and me, our vote will just go to our first choice and stay there. But not every voter is that committed to their preferred cause.”

    Your remark made me think about AV in a new light.

    How many voters will bother to vote beyond first preference?
    It takes a degree of political interest/sophistication/awareness/intent which I suspect most people simply do not have.

    Are there any stats on the proportion of voters under AV systems who only indicate a first preference?

  22. Paul H-J
    Yes and no. The mayoral elections give us some evidence that first preferences are not so very differently distributed from how they would be under FPTP. It is possible, and I am hopeful from evidence from other countries, that once voters get used to AV then they will give their first preference to who they really want to win, but in the shorter term, it doesn’t look like there is so much disruption (I would put the relative success of independents in mayoral elections down to them being 2nd order elections, much more focussed on personality, and having a lot of media attention on the election).

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