This week’s YouGov results for the Sunday Times are now up here. Voting intention is CON 33%, LAB 43%, LDEM 10%, UKIP 6%. As ever, it is wrong to judge by a single poll, but this one is very much back to the normal holding position. We had a couple of 14 point leads after Labour conference and a couple of 7 points straight after Tory conference, but if other polls this week are like this they have all cancelled each other out and we are back to normal.

The leader approval ratings are minus 24 for Cameron (from minus 20 last week), minus 14 for Miliband (from minus 9 last week) and minus 58 for Clegg. Miliband’s boost from his party conference last week has started to unwind, while Cameron has only a small boost from his own conference – far less than the one Miliband enjoyed.

On economic policy 34% of people said the government should stick to its current course (up from 29% last time YouGov asked), 38% said it should change strategy to concentrate on growth (down from 42%). This is the smallest lead for changing course since back in April.

While Cameron has a slight increase in his ratings and in support for the government’s economic policy, public perceptions of the conference are that it made very little difference – 59% say it made no difference to their views of David Cameron (10% more positive, 12% more negative), 46% say it made no difference to the Conservative’s chances of winning the next election (11% more likely, 13% less likely). Of the three main party leaders Ed Miliband is perceived as having had the most successful conference – 32% think his was the most successful, 22% David Cameron, 3% Nick Clegg.

On the details of the Conservative conference, people think Cameron’s “aspiration nation” is the right vision for Britain by 49% to 27%, and he leads Ed Miliband by 35% to 27% as the leader people would most trust to help Britain to swim rather than sink.

People are evenly split on the principle of cutting an extra £10 billion off the welfare bill (43% support, 43% oppose) but they support the specific ideas floated at the party conference – 51% support stopping housing benefit for most under 25s and 67% support stopping unemployed parents from receiving extra benefits when they have another child. They would, however, have been even more supportive of the mansion tax that George Osborne ruled out – 73% say they are in favour of a new tax on homes worth over £2 million.

Finally in the conference questions, people think that Boris would be a better leader than Cameron by 36% to 34%. Amongst the Conservative party’s own voters Cameron has a large lead – ahead of Boris by 58% by 29%. Looking at the hypothetical voting intention questions, the control question with the current leaders has the parties at CON 33%, LAB 42%, LD 10%. Asking how people would vote if Boris replaced Dave the figures switch to CON 38%, LAB 40%, LDEM 10% – so the figures still suggest Boris would win over more voters than Dave.

60% of people said they think there should be a referendum on Britain’s membership of the EU (although to add the usual caveat, people support a referendum on almost anything you ask them about, given it is the equivalent of asking whether people would like to have a say on something or let politicians do it!). 32% of people say they would vote to remain a member of the EU, 48% say they would vote to leave (pretty typical YouGov’s recent results for this question).

UPDATE: It doesn’t look as though there was an Opinium poll in the Observer today – when they announced the link up they said they would move to fortnightly polls following conference season, so presumably this is the “off-week”. There is, however, a “Vision Critical” poll in the Sunday Express. Vision Critical are the parent company of Angus Reid, so I am assuming this is just a differently branded Angus Reid poll – topline figures there, with changes from the last Angus Reid poll back in August, are CON 31%(+1), LAB 43%(+2), LD 8%(-3), UKIP 8%.

375 Responses to “YouGov/Sunday Times – CON 33, LAB 43, LD 10, UKIP 6”

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  1. @ Allan Christie

    …makes Scottish Labour look rather outdated and ragtag!!
    That’s exactly how I like to think of myself. Outdated & ragtag but with a certain je ne sais quoi. ;-)


    Agree with your post.

    Scotland was conquered on a number of occasions by England.

    The reason that Bannockburn is so celebrated is that was one of the few occasions that we won!

    None of that, however, is anything to do with what Scotland’s constitutional status should be in the 21st century.

    Every nation has defined itself through myth – usually concerning wars.

    The UK could have defined itself by any of its wars since 1707, but chooses WWI? How odd.

  3. Amber

    “Outdated & ragtag”

    That image of you in punk gear is irrevocably burned in our minds! :-)

  4. leftylampton


    Whilst we’re on the subject of history, the Act of Settlement paid off the debts incurred by the Scots in their Darien attempt to establish an Empire. The sum of £398,000 was transferred to the Scots to re-float their economy after this madcap experiment (I wonder if Sir Fred’s ancestors were involved?)

    Anyway, as part of the 2014 divorce, presumably this will be re-paid. With, say, 5% compound interest, the debt comes to £1.1 trillion and rising

    LOL. Save that one for Halloween.

  5. Allen

    Pink doesn’t match my eyes, unless I’m really hangover!!

  6. @ Lefty, Jay,

    Anyway, as part of the 2014 divorce, presumably this will be re-paid. With, say, 5% compound interest, the debt comes to £1.1 trillion and rising.
    It was paid already via BP & the electricity board. Did somebody sell all that for a song to the private sector? You can’t really blame Scotland for that, can you? ;-)

  7. @Lefty

    Well, in the (what appears to be unlikely) circumstances of an Independence motion passing; Parliament would have to decide the terms of settlement over a wide range of assets. It’s not at all likely that Scotland would get as good a deal as certain parties say, particularly as there’s no actual legal obligation on Parliament to give Scotland good terms. But it could be quite good economically for England, Wales and Northern Ireland.


    @ Alan Christie
    “Richer or poorer the Scots were never in favour of the Act of Union and were sold down the river by the Liberals.” Um

    I’m jesting, I don’t mean Charles Kennedy’s era!! ;)

  9. @ Allan Christie

    …makes Scottish Labour look rather outdated and ragtag!!
    “That’s exactly how I like to think of myself. Outdated & ragtag but with a certain je ne sais quoi”

    Am saying nothing!! ;)

  10. @Robbie

    Temporary occupation of Edinburgh does not equate to conquering of Scotland or ending the chain of sovereign power Scotland held up to the Acts of Union.


    You haven’t actually read the agreement, have you?

    More Horrible History:
    When Cromwell occupied Edinburgh, and told the Burghers that he was going on to occupy Glasgow, they replied “Ye should nae bother.”

  13. Jay Blanc

    I get the impression that the398,000 was a gift in Exchange for a Scottish commitment to help fund future English(British) debts. Although it could be seen as a dowry, anyhow it doesn’t seem to have been a loan so the issue or repayment does not arise

  14. I reckon Salmond should just call upon The Auld Alliance to carry out a few air strikes over number 10 then set out negotiations for Berwick Upon Tweed. ;)

  15. If the debate on how the future will be depends on people trying to calculate the comparative costs of Bruce’s raids into England and Henry VII’s Rough Wooing, then all the participants in such debate should agree to mutual self immolation.

    We are where we are.

  16. OLDNAT

    “The sum of £398,000 was transferred to the Scots to re-float their economy after this madcap experiment (I wonder if Sir Fred’s ancestors were involved?)”

    Come on you have to admit that was rather funny. :)


    OK I’ll give you that one! :-)

  18. Old Nat.
    Are you suggesting that the debate should not take cognaisance of (ugly phrase, I know) the historical narrative between our two nations?

    So one assumes that you’d disapprove of, nay, demand immolation of, any SNP grandee playing the Bannockburn card in 2014?

  19. ugly and mis-spelled…


    Interesting that you use the phrase “our two nations”.

    There is no conflict between mine (Scots) and yours (English?). The conflict is between the Scots and the British, in terms of political sovereignty. In social union terms there is no conflict – just as you have no conflict with the Channel islands.

    I’ve said before that every nation/country defines itself through myths. Bruce (and his bloody spider!) is one of ours, Alfred (and his burnt cakes) is one of of yours.

    We can both understand how these mythologies have developed.

    What I find incomprehensible is that the British (in a political sense) seem to be defining themselves around a WWI myth.

    200 years of imperialism before that, and they can’t find a single myth in that to rally around nowadays?

    it was very different when I was at school and there were lots of glorious British imperialist stories that we were taught.

    Why have these been abandoned?

  21. @RiN

    You’re quite right in that’s entirely irrelevant… Because the Act of Union had no severability clauses to untangle it all to grant a clear return to two separate nations on the same footing as before.

    So really, legally speaking, if there is a recognised plebiscite of independence from the Scottish people, the UK can simply hand over the territory. *And Nothing Else*. Everything not affixed to the geography could be put on a truck and shipped down south. Even Scottish members of the military could be told they signed up to service of the UK, and will be expected to serve out their due, particularly if they’re not living in Scotland at the time. Of course, that would be really rotten of us to do, so it won’t be quite like that… But aside from simple territory, Scotland would be negotiating what the UK allows it to keep, not what to split.


    To repeat –

    You haven’t actually read the agreement, have you?


    So we have no liability for any of the UK Debt?

    Seems a bit unfair to lumber you with all of it – but if that;s what you want …..

  24. @OldNat

    Yep. But you don’t get any of the Crown or UK Government funds either. You might, possibly, be able to argue that the Scottish Parliament and local authorities can keep what ever are in their own current accounts without UK accent. But to keep any UK Government owned assets other than territory, Scotland’s going to have to negotiate…

  25. OLD NAT
    Grunge rather than punk, I thought.
    Mount Ararat and its neighbouring peak evoke urgings of Encounters of the Third Kind. The guest house I stayed at is called the Villa Delenda, as in Omnia Memoria Anteriora Delenda Sunt.
    Actually, Ann in Wales, it was named by the witty Italian, to denote the fact that this charming 18C merchants house is due to be demolished to make way for another post-Soviet tower block.
    Amber; Just in case you are still searching for identify renewal, but on the whole I’ld rather you stayed with your je ne sais quoi. How can Croftee be leaving us in the face of your entreaties?

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