The last of February’s regular monthly polls has rolled in – Ipsos MORI for Reuters have topline figures, with changes from January, of CON 35%(-3), LAB 41%(+3), LDEM 12%(nc). A six point Labour lead is the largest any poll has shown since before Cameron’s European veto in December.

The normal caveats apply of course, sure, it could be a sign that we are headed back to pre-veto situation, but equally it could be a blip. Looking at the wider pattern of polls we can be relatively confident that there has been some level of movement back towards Labour since January, but the polls seem to be averaging at around a 1 or 2 point Labour lead, so we are not yet back to the 4-6 point leads we were seeing last Autumn.


164 Responses to “Ipsos MORI/Reuters – CON 35%, LAB 41%, LD 12%”

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  1. On the growth figures, I’d imagine that Mervyn King is probably going to be the one proven right – that we’ll see a zig-zag pattern of quarterly GDP figures, much like we saw in 2011.
    Also given that 2011’s figures were all recently downgraded, expecting Q1 2012 to be slightly better isn’t much of a leap.

    Previous GDP figures-
    2010Q4 £350812m -0.49% growth
    2011Q1 £352254m +0.41% growth
    2011Q2 £352212m -0.01% growth
    2011Q3 £354224m +0.57% growth
    2011Q4 £353516m -0.20% growth

    Updated GDP figures –
    2010Q4 £350812m -0.49% growth
    2011Q1 £351909m +0.31% growth
    2011Q2 £351986m +0.02% growth
    2011Q3 £353863m +0.53% growth
    2011Q4 £353124m -0.21% growth

  2. TF

    So, from Oct10 to Dec11, GDP grew by 0.17%.

    Might not match LBJ’s arbitrary definition of a recession, but by any rationsl practical definitions, we’ve now been flat lining for 15 months. The longer we go on like this, the longer the slog is going to be to get us back to the long-term growth trend.

  3. @Jim Jam

    Valid points. Just speculating that (in veiw of the fact that IpsosMori judge likelihood to vote on a 1-10 scale) if they took the certainty down a notch to include nearer 65% of voters, then we could see a more accurate (absolute) measure.

    That Con goes from 35-33% and Lab from 41-43% as turnout moves from a notional 55-80% turnout is worth thinking about. Returning more to the region of a 70% turnout has to be a good thing for Labour atm.

  4. SoCalLiberal

    While Anthony may not want us to discuss this polling question! I found an interesting point to be the question structure. There would have been a validity in asking the questions in contrasting format (independence v remaining in the UK), as opposed to their confused format (independence v “over the next 5 years”).

    That Yes supporters were much more positive than the Noes in both scenarios was also notable.

  5. Len Mcluskey trying his best to halt Labour`s momentum…If there is one thing guaranteed to increase Con VI,it is militant unionism

    Cameron overegging it by asking Labour to return Unite`s donations…I am not sure the Tory party has returned the donations of people who were convicted for fraud later.

  6. @SMUKESH

    “I am not sure the Tory party has returned the donations of people who were convicted for fraud later.”

    Or the donations of the Bankers who have brought havoc on this country.

  7. @SMUKESH
    “I am not sure the Tory party has returned the donations of people who were convicted for fraud later.”

    Or the unpatriotic businesses that are evading and avoiding paying taxes.

  8. @SMUKESH
    I meant of course donations of the unpatriotic businesses.

  9. LIZH
    `Or the donations of the Bankers who have brought havoc on this country.`

    Fair point…About 50% of Tory party donations come from the city

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-12401049

  10. What’s Ken been up to?

  11. “So, from Oct10 to Dec11, GDP grew by 0.17%.”
    If you mean ‘Q42011 was 0.16% (remember roundings) higher than Q32010’, then yep – that’s true.
    But you could put it another way and say that Q42011 was 0.66% higher than Q42010, that sounds a lot better. ;)

    It’s one of those things where you can pick and choose which figures to look at – so Ed Balls for Q3 decided to look at Q32011 vs Q32010, which showed 0.53% growth (now downgraded to 0.37%) to prove that the economy was flatlining – but he decided to completely ignore the Q42011 vs Q42010 which was 0.77% growth (now 0.66%) when those figures came out.

    However, it’s pretty clear that over the last year or so, the economy has been flat-lining – but that doesn’t indicate that it wasn’t just a rough-spot and we aren’t seeing growth now.
    There were pretty good numbers for Jan and CBI thinks Feb numbers are also going to be pretty good. And Yougov’s consumer confidence figures (IIRC) are picking up.
    IMHO, We’ll have to wait to for at least Q2 2012 figures to see if anything has changed.

  12. Hi Ken!!! I worried about you for a while, didn’t know you were back over here.

  13. @NickP
    “What’s Ken been up to?”

    Apparently Livingstone forgot to close a company called Localaction Ltd. into which he paid all his media appearance fees while he was mayor. The funds in this company account were sent to an Indian charity for the education of orphan children.

  14. LIZH…………Don’t forget Ken’s current tax vehicle, Silveta Ltd, saves him a fortune by avoiding tax at the higher rate on a significant income……….incidentally, the gifts to charity only appeared when he became Mayor, prior to that he was dodging tax with Localaction Ltd. :-)

  15. SUE MARSH………….Hi Sue, I can’t adequately express my admiration for you and the activities you undertake so selflessly, more power to your elbow. Even though we don’t agree on fundamental political strategies, I love your integrity and sense of purpose. Thanks for worrying about me, you’re a star. :-) :-)

  16. @KEN
    If that is true, then the government should close such loopholes so that people don’t avoid paying taxes. But I understand our Chancellor does the same with some trust fund so maybe that is expecting too much.

  17. “Cameron overegging it by asking Labour to return Unite`s donations…I am not sure the Tory party has returned the donations of people who were convicted for fraud later.”

    Don’t forget our old friend Asil Nadir either. He’s an old friend of, and large donor to, the Conservatives and is currently on trial, after many years of exile, charged with larceny and fraud on a grand scale. If I was Cameron, I’d get ready to hand back the £440,000 his party trousered from Nadir when he was pilfering his money from Polly Peck.

    As for this Ipsos poll, it lends credence to the theory of a steadily growing Labour lead.

  18. LIZH………….What about ISA’s etc., everyone is at it, apart from people at the bottom of the food chain, all tax relief is questionable, closing one loophole simply encourages the search for another, I certainly don’t know what the answer is, but I do know you can’t rely on politicians, of any stripe, to give a moral lead………it seems that politics is now simply a stepping stone to satisfying commercial ambition.
    Incidentally, I must ‘fess up, as a banker I have, occasionally, taken advantage of available instruments to advance my interests. :-)

  19. @KEN

    If politicians can’t pass the necessary laws or give a moral lead then they should just belt up like our PM.

  20. LIZH………I’m afraid they won’t shut up, we elect them to, ‘represent’ us, they feel obliged to tell us what they think will get them elected, Tony Blair and Gordon Brown are raking it in, both using available tax efficient schemes to reduce their tax liability to our State……….in other words, they’re all at it, given a chance. :-)

  21. @KEN

    Maybe the Wont vote section of VI needs to increase even further.

  22. LIZH………..I am already disenfranchised, as a Tory living in Southwark. I vote LD to keep Labour out, but I must be fair to my MP, Simon Hughes………he is a good local rep. :-)

  23. C 38
    L40
    LD 9

    App -22

    :-)

  24. @KEN

    I was a LD voter in a Tory/LD marginal. As I have now joined the Labour Party, I am not voting LD tactically to keep Tories out. I am hoping there are more like me here who will vote Labour and we may be able to change this constituency and make history.

  25. The review of the murder of Daniel Morgan and specifically NI involvement has the potential to take the hacking investigtion into a whole new area.

    It’s possible nobody at News International will be considered suitable to run a tap, let alone control major UK broadcasters when it’s all done.

  26. @LizH

    “I am hoping there are more like me here who will vote Labour and we may be able to change this constituency and make history”

    You mean by electing a Tory MP?

  27. @ Ken

    There is no reason why people in any Party have a company for income from corporate activities i.e. where they have several customers whom they invoice for appearances, lectures, professional advice etc. What is objectionable is where no corporate type income is being earned, i.e. a salary from a single employer is being chanelled through a company simply to avoid paye & nic.

    Evidence has yet to be presented that Ken or Gordon or Tony or whoever has been receiving a systematic income stream from a single customer aka, a salary, & actually saving tax/ nic by chanelling it through a company which would be done by the company paying them dividends instead of a director’s salary.

    And, if they have not taken dividends instead of a salary then no tax or nic has actually been avoided by the individual.
    8-)

  28. @RobertC

    “You mean by electing a Tory MP?”

    I see no difference between Nick Clegg and the Orange Bookers and the Tories. Either way a Tory blue or Orange will get in so I might as well have the satisfaction of voting for my Party.

  29. @lizh

    Well said. I live in a Lib/Lab Marginal with a large student population. The Lib Dem won last time by a few hundred votes. A major plank of his campaign was no increases in tuition fees. I think he’ll get short shrift next time.
    8-)

  30. NickP

    I don’t know which is stranger, the Daniel Morgan murder story or the way it has been ignored by most of the media (Private Eye the honorable exception). Even yesterday when all this came out at Leveson hardly any notice was taken (the BBC as usual letting the public down) and what coverage there was, was about that b****y horse[1] (still it made a very funny Steve Bell cartoon).

    I don’t understand the attitude that the BBC has to the Murdoch empire. While it hurries to report anything, however minor against itself, failings by NI or Sky get downplayed. It certainly doesn’t happen vice versa.

    It’s like the bullied kid in the playground doing whatever the bully want and refusing to tell. Whether it’s fear or BBC staff not wanting to spoil future prospects with the biggest employer around I don’t know.

    [1] Cynic that I am, I suspect if the story had been about a celebrity other than one of their own, we would have seen headlines like “Why was police horse taken back off violent Rebbecca?”

  31. AMBERSTAR………..It’s obviously only us horrible Tories that take advantage of available opportunities to avoid maxtax…..I’m sure that Ken has good reason to run 2 companies and pay himself divi’s., ( a quick check at Companies House, gives you a clue ) other than tax avoidance…………can’t think what it could be though. :-)

  32. @Valerie

    I hope all who defected from the LDs don’t vote for them even tactically.

  33. @Robert C
    From your reply to LizH, you seem surprised that a Labour supporter might choose no longer to vote LD tactically in a seat that is currently a Con/LD marginal. I’m surprised that you seem to think that votes from Labour supporters can still be taken for granted where the LDs need them, irrespective of your party’s antics over the last two and probably the next three years. You won’t be able to wipe the slate clean and pretend in 2015 to those on the left that you’re a changed party and that the past five years of Conservative government were just a bad dream.

    At the next election, Labour will be looking to take advantage by replacing the LDs in 2nd place in a number of Con/LD seats where previously it had been squeezed tactically by the LDs. Once the LDs have been replaced as the main challenger, there’s then the prospect at subsequent elections of Labour taking on the Conservatives to win the seat. That is precisely the same multi-election strategy – first get into contention, then win the seat – that your own party adopted successfully in the past in many seats that it now holds.

  34. LizH,
    Of course in Lab/Tory marginals there is little LD left to share massively in Labour’s favour.
    The movement of 2010 LD voters to Lab may well be dispropotionately people like you in seats like yours.

    Would you feel differently if the LD was not an orange booker, Farron for example?

  35. Good Evening All.
    Lib Dem crisis must be deepening.

    The Bournemouth LEA are now saying the pupil who was killed tragically in the school was not killed in a riot on the yard.

    VALERIE.
    education again:
    The stat that says it all for me is that the 7% in public schools get the majority of 3 A Levels in the ‘Facilitating Subjects’; the Russell Group subject list.

    And in some boroughs no pupils achieve A levels in these subjects.

  36. @ Ken

    Well none of the reports say that Ken Livingstone did pay himself dividends. They say that if he had done so, he’d have made a tax saving but none are actually saying that he has. I guess they just haven’t got around to checking companies house yet….

    …Or maybe they’ve run with assertions but the facts don’t support their allegations. It will be interesting to see whether or not they come up with some actual evidence.
    8-)

  37. @LizH

    I used to be ABTT – Anything but the Tories, so would have voted LibDem if the situation warranted it. Not any more.

    Why vote for an orange Tory when you can get the real thing.
    I figure lots of former LD voters feel the same way.

  38. @JIM JAM
    “Would you feel differently if the LD was not an orange booker, Farron for example?”

    No I wouldn’t because I don’t trust any of them. Did you know Farron abstained rather vote for to get the NHS Risk Register published and Simon Hughes voted against?

  39. Chris Lane,so where was he killed then?

  40. @Jim Jam
    I’m struggling to recall a major Commons vote that the Government have lost on the back of a LD rebellion. Or for that matter a serial LD rebel of the order of a Bob Marshall-Andrews, for example. Are there any LD MPs whose record of voting against this Government holds forth the serious prospect that they might sometime soon jump ship?

  41. ANN MILES.
    Good Evening to you. The boy did die in school. Very very sad and very worrying events.

    ANDY BURNHAM is doing well with Mr Paxman, passionate and normal looking. And very clear.

  42. PHIL.
    The Lib Dems are very loyal members of the Coalition.

    I think that none of them will jump ship.

    As RAF said yesterday the ‘National Liberal’ looms.

  43. @ChrisLane1945
    Agreed. Regarding both the LDs and Burnham.

  44. @Phil – “first get into contention, then win the seat”

    The Ascroft polling showed Labour already ahead of LD in the underlying VI in Con/LD marginals – it was only when a supplementary question was asked that the position reverted somewhat.

    However, if there is some local opinion polling – in this instance the Hastings Observer – showing that LD is no longer a challenger….a dramatic example of what can happen in one step (admittedly with a large Con-Lab swing in this case):

    Hastings and Rye 1992:
    Con 47.6%
    LD 35.2%
    Lab 15.7%

    1997:
    Lab, 34.4%
    Con 29.2%
    LD 28.0%

    In the three subsequent general elections LDs have polled 10-15%.

  45. BILLY BOB.
    When in 1997 the news came through that Labour had won Hove, the Labour leader said: You are winding me up. Next you will tell me ‘we have won Hastings and Rye’

    That leader then fell about laughting when he was told:
    We have won Hastings and Rye.

    May 2 1997 early morning. Bliss was it to be alive that early morning.

  46. Before saying good night:

    Harold Evans was very eloquent on the Media tonight on BBC 2 with Jeremy Paxman.

  47. AMBER STAR………I’ll wait with you…… :-)
    By the way, isn’t it nice to see Sue back on here, she adds class. :-)

  48. I remember 1997 too, it was an extraordinary night I had long awaited. It’s just that such nights are few and far between. We’re going to see something rather muddier next time, and probably the time after that too.

  49. CHRISLANE1945

    Some of us have had a similar experience – rather more recently.

  50. @Billy Bob
    In a similar vein, in this neck of the woods, I recall the Mid-Staffs by-election in 1990. Labour would probably have won it anyway, having (just) clawed its way back from 3rd place in 1987 (22.4%) to 2nd place in 1992 (24.7%), in the middle of the poll tax row. But I’m sure that a (dubious by modern standards) poll by Birmingham University in the middle of the campaign helped the subsequent leap in the Labour vote share to 49%, by making it crystal clear which party was in contention and which was not.

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