This morning’s YouGov poll for the Sun has topline figures of CON 33%, LAB 42%, LDEM 10%, UKIP 7%. It follows another nine point lead yesterday. While it isn’t definite (the figures have a horrible habit of proving me wrong the moment I suggest something may be a meaningful trend, and the underlying lead could still be about 7 or 8 points, with these just normal variation on the high side), but it is looking as if the Conservative referendum bounce is fading already.

181 Responses to “YouGov/Sun – CON 33, LAB 42, LD 10, UKIP 7”

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  1. The referendum bounce is fading but UKIP aren’t rebounding. Bad news for them.

  2. I think you’re right. How disappointing this must be for the Tory right.

    however, I think many of us can say “Told you so”… the public just aint that interested in Europe…. especially when it actually higlights divisions Ken Clarke is doing the rounds this morning)

  3. I hope no one posts “first”. Those people are the worst!

  4. It was not much of a bounce anyway, I fully expect Labour to be back with a 10/12% lead within another week or so.

    If you go back to 74 when Labour made its referendum promise (even with the intervention by Enoch Powell) its difficult to see how much of an extra boost (if any) it gave Labour, they ended up in October 74 with a 3 seat majority that’s all.

    Miliband was probably right not to commit, it’ll cause the Tories more trouble than its worth. On R4 this morning one of the business men who signed the letter supporting Dave, made it clear he only signed because he believed Dave was determined to keep us in, (a Tory donor) he wouldn’t even answer when asked what his position would be if the re-negotation failed, only said Mr Cameron is determined to keep us in. It probably didn’t occur to him that 80% of Tory MP’s who want an In/Out are only interested in the OUT.

  5. Reply to neuroskeptic.

    Yougov have always given UKIP low ratings, 7% is not unusual in their polls.

  6. I think maybe some of the Cons poll bounce has gone back to “don’t know” rather than straight to UKIP. Thus DC has muddied the waters and given waverers something to think about, ie it’s not just UKIP who are offering a referendum… except this one isn’t immediate. And of course there are issues such as Gay Marriage causing further disturbance on the right.

    Is it me or is there a pattern here of using referenda on Europe to hold together divided parties?

  7. Long post on the last thread about the wonders of PR

  8. @David

    In the last 10 polls, UKIP have been on 7 three times. Before that, the last time they were on 7 was in mid November. There’s no doubt that UKIP have had a dip recently.

    Whether they’ll recover has yet to be seen.

  9. David: Just look at thepolls from the past few months; YouGov had them at a solid 10-11% for a few straight weeks. Not any more.

  10. Miliband is proving right on all the big issues .. people are not fooled by cameron PR skills ..

  11. The bad news about the economy may have muddied the effect of EU bounce, but the initial 34s and 35s may give DC’s advisers a notion about what a pre-election repeat or related effort could produce, if handled effectively.

    There is a very good Matt cartoon (Telgraph front page) today on police recruitment – I recommend Neil A to take a glance.

  12. Perhaps there’s a law of diminishing returns working here and each time Cameron uses the Europe card it has less effect. The Euroveto gave him a much greater boost.

    I suspect that he’s looking for a longer term, more generalised political effect anyway – calling a truce on Europe so that his party can start campaigning for 2015 without slitting each other’s throats too much.


    Unhappy that I missed most of the discussion on previous thread about boundaries (real life leaves me with so little time for the internet, what a bore!) but a couple of thoughts for anyone who’s not worn out by the subject:-

    1) If fairness between the two biggest parties is the issue, then equalising the size of consitituencies (either by voters or population) doesn’t necessarily do that. It’d be quite easy to draw boundaries on equal electorates that left one party severely disadvantaged. For example. you could allow Labour a few inner city constituencies with 90% majorities and create a lot of safe(ish) Tory constituencies that were half suburban half rural. This would give the Tories a huge advantage. Of course, the MPs mostly wouldn’t represent any coherent place with a name and their constituencies would have weird, salamander shapes, but they’d have equal electorates – would that be fair? The Boundary Commission is independent, of course, and such gerrymandering would not be its intention, but neither is it obliged to avoid such a result, and the accidental production of grossly unfair boundaries – even when equalised – is a distinct possibility.

    2) Boundaries, populations and electorates are not the only political facts, and Labour and Tory voters are not different species. In 1992, for every percentage point of the vote that they won, the Tories won 8.9 seats and Labour won 7.4 seats. Not fair to Labour. But in 1997 the Tories could only get 5.4 seats for every 1% of their voters, while Labour gained 9.7. This had little or nothing to do with boundaries,but was a result of New Labour’s radical repositioning of the Labour party (and I think we forget how radical that was) and the failure of the Major Tory party to respond adequately to it. New Labour won over previous Tory voters and won constituencies that had previously looked safe for the Tories. In the run up to 2010 Cameron tried to create a New Tory brand, and reproduce Blair’s landslide but he (or perhaps his party) simply did not go far enough to do it. It’s a mistake to blame the boundary commission’s rulebook for that failure.

    I have always been in favour of the Boundary commission using population (including non-voters like children and resident non-nationals) as a basis for their work instead of electorate, becasue MPs should represent all their constituents. But it’s never been a priority for me – until now. Overall I think its regrettable that the Tories have politicised an issue that should be outside party politics. They may come to regret it .

  13. @Howard
    but surely achieving 2% less than he did in 2010 isnt going to get him a victory? He’s not stupid enough to think that will be enough?

  14. David
    “It probably didn’t occur to him that 80% of Tory MP’s who want an In/Out are only interested in the OUT.”

    It would be interestingto see the hard evidence to support that statement, but I suspect that it is a ‘lefty generalism’ statement.

  15. With Cameron prattling about in or out of the EU I think that plenty of British farmers who do benefit from the EU hand outs when problems arise with bad weather or disease will not want to hear the out too much about the out. and they will influence areas in which they live. Has the Tory research Dep’t done its sums here?

    When business make their media case against coming out in the run up on which they will spend a mint, it will be enough to convince the majority of the public to vote NO. The only people he is being dictated to are his rabid back benchers.

  16. The referendum bounce was a dead cat bounce. The fact that it’s politically light years away dependant also his win at the next general election, makes it almost a non event.

  17. Oops, hopes of a brighter future have been dealt a blow by German retail sales, down nearly 5% in December on a yoy basis, the good news is that its not Greece which suffered a 16.8% decline. OMFG

  18. @ David

    I think the Tory ‘Outies’ are somewhere between 30% & 40% (100 – 125) of their current MPs rather than the 80% you mention.

  19. On the boundary front, the Electoral Registration Act has now got royal assent, so the Boundary Commissions have ceased to work on the 6th review. All over, move along now.

  20. @Mr Wells

    Aw Shucks. I was just getting into my stride.

  21. I think DC is still enjoying a modest bounce from both his Europe speech and the Algeria incident when as Paul Croft put is we see him at his best.

    I think Keith P is right that a few waverers moved back in to the Tory VI camp with many being from DK and some maybe moving out again.
    These are the easy votes that imo will almost certainly vote cons at the GE which tells me that in a mythical GE tomorrow (or 4 weeks) the real starting position between the big 2 would be close to 40/35.

    All to play for.

  22. Neuroskeptic

    The referendum bounce is fading but UKIP aren’t rebounding. Bad news for them

    Actually probably better than they might have hoped for. Their average over the last five polls, covering the periods fully after Cameron’s speech, is 8. The previous three groups of 5 give 9, 8.8 and 9.2. So at most they’ve lost a point down from a steady average of 9. They’ve hardly been devastated by Cameron’s secret weapon – as others have stated, the more it’s used, the less effective it seems to become.

    The Conservatives may have picked up a point off Labour as well, perhaps placing them in the 33-34 range as opposed to Labour’s current 41-42. It’s very possible that even this limited success is only retrieving Tories who would probably vote for them anyway, but are saying Labour or UKIP to express dissatisfaction.

  23. Roger – you put it better than me (and Howard is on similar lines) and I agree.

  24. @RogerMexico

    The Great Speech was announced so far in advance, its details were so widely guessed at (or leaked!) and it took so long to actually get spoken that UKIP was already partially discounted in the polling figures. They’ve been slipping over the last couple of months I think.

  25. @JIMJAM

    I agree, all to play for.

  26. John pilgrim

    “most economists don’t do economics in my experience”

    Taken out of context but it made me smile

  27. Anthony

    On the subject of the UKIP vote, a few weeks back YouGov carefully produced a tracker showing voting intention as at present but with an extra column for UKIP going back to the 2010 GE. Unfortunately since then the previous VI tracker has been updated with each new poll, but the “with added UKIP” one left untouched.

    I can’t see why the latter can’t be used as the VI tracker from now on as it has all the same information as the old one, plus the UKIP column.

    And if I was the poor intern who spent time going back over all those hundreds of polls I’d feel really aggrieved at all that work going to waste – it was irritating enough doing 3 weeks worth.

  28. AW
    Take a bow. You have been the most reliable and informative source on this subject of boundaries. It is just a pity, for me, that it does not interest me an iota, except for the outcomes, but I admire your scholarship immensely.

  29. @Roger Mexico

    Wikipedia recently gave UKIP their own VI column (plus a third party lead column starting Jan 2012). I see now the page has been edited to show a UKIP percentage in all polls since May 2010:


  30. As the dust settles, we can see now the increasing evidence that the referendum promise failed to lift Tory VI out of the trough it is in. Peaking at 35% is a pretty low bounce, and is worrying for Tory high command. Labour VI also showed a stubborness, if you strip out methodological changes, so I think that the card has been played, but hasn’t had the winning edge hoped for.

  31. @Alec

    “…so I think that the card has been played, but hasn’t had the winning edge hoped for.”

    I agree. They won’t admit it, but I suspect those close to Cameron and most Tory supporters are fairly disappointed with the relatively small impact the EU Referendum offer has had on opinion. One or two polls detected a modest twitch in the immediate aftermath of the speech, some picked up next to nothing, but I would think the Tories really hoped for and expected a significant surge rather than the slightly more favourable oscillation within MOE limits that we’ve seen.

    From the usual suspects, we even had a few “you watch the polls shift now, Miliband’s dropped another almighty goolie” predictions almost as soon as Cameron sat down. As I said at the time, we’re still where we’ve been for 11 months or so now and people really shouldn’t get so excited about minor political squalls. My hunch is that opinion has ossified and something pretty big is required to move it now. Europe never was, and never will be, such an issue.

    The caravan moves on and we’re edging towards a period in this Parliament when voters will begin to form final judgements on the Government. Not there yet and, in that sense, it’s still all to play for, but if I was in Tory High Command, I’d be getting a bit twitchy now about having had to stare at unchanging polls for nigh on 12 months. That’s quite a long period to be consistently circa 10% behind and it won’t be long before nerves start to jangle and Tory MPs in marginals begin to get anxious.

    Stalking horses and all that.

  32. I’ve avoided making comments here for over a week to see what occurs to VI.

    The game is up for DC.

    He lost the 2010 GE, when it should have been a romp.

    Hopes that EM would be blown away or the Lab party would turn on itself has not happened.

    It is now a matter of when DC is challenged, IMO.

  33. On the other hand being only 2 or 3 points down on the last GE result is not bad when they are in the middle of a 5 year termyear and the economy is doing so badly, of course this is because the libdems have taken most of the pain but even so……….

  34. Not having been around the site for a few months, one thing I’ve noticed is there is a bit less “red Ed is such a geeky wonk, he’ll never be PM”.

    Has his approval rating gone up?

    Valerie x

  35. I would be interested to know whether you have an explanation for volatility in recent polling for 18 to 24 age group. Voting intentions a few days ago gave appreciable lead for Con. over Labour now reversed back to normal large lead for Labour.

    Furthermore, I wonder about the relevance of large lead Cameron has over Milliband as possible Prime Minister when the number of dont knows is 37% in this case.

  36. postageincluded

    The Great Speech was announced so far in advance, its details were so widely guessed at (or leaked!) and it took so long to actually get spoken that UKIP was already partially discounted in the polling figures. They’ve been slipping over the last couple of months I think.

    Mr Cameron’s prolonged revelation may have smeared the impact out a bit, but only over the week before. UKIP seem pretty steady over the previous few weeks. They may have come down a little more since the end of 2012, but maybe only half a point or so – those who keep running totals will no doubt be able to correct me.

    What does seem to have changed is the make-up of the UKIP vote since then. They seem to have lost their very 17-20% support in the over 60s and now be scoring and now be scoring around the 12-14% mark (it’s still the group they’re most popular with). Presumably many have gone back to the Conservatives, though the losses have been countered a bit by gains in younger age groups.

  37. I’ve just realised by last comment was a bit unclear. The change in the UKIP age profile seems have started at the end of last year, not after the ‘speech’.

    Thanks to Billy Bob for the tip about the Wiki page, though they don’t seem as thorough at picking up all the polls as our Dear Leader.

  38. @Mike N,

    £20 (to be paid to charity of choice) says that Cameron will still be Tory leader up to (if not much beyond) the next General Election.

  39. Does anyone have a theory as to what bounces actually are?

    They do not seem to make any difference to the outcome at the subsequent election i.e Cleggmania bounce, Romney bounces, Party Conference bounces. I read in the US where they poll the same people that it was that the ‘in the news’ person’s supporters were more likely to respond.

    I find it difficult to believe that people are so fickle and change their vote so easily.

  40. @Valerie

    I think they stopped doing that, because they realised that people were deciding “You know, might not be a bad idea to have a geeky wonk as a PM.” Perhaps we should call it the “Guy you want on your pub Quiz team” effect.

    Now they’re trying to tar him as “Just another Politician, bad as all other Politicians!” which doesn’t really work when it’s coming from the Establishment.

  41. Changes in composition of the 2010 vote since the last YouGov Poll before The Speech ( 23 Jan) have been:

    Cons :-
    Retained -+ 5 to 79
    To Lab. +1 to 6
    To UKIP -6 to 12

    Retained- -4 to 89
    To Con. +2 to 6
    To UKIP + 1 to 3

    Retained -6 to 38
    To Con -1 to 8
    To Lab +4 to 39
    To others +2 to 15

  42. RE: All the bounce / bounce gone posts…I’ll wait for Sunday’s poll, which should include the reaction to the BC vote against the government. Will Clegg’s VI rise or fall, or will no one notice?

  43. Well,I think that this was the last great throw of the dice from the Tories.Who
    Knows now he is striding the world stage, that is never a bad thing for a
    Beleaguered PM.

  44. Good Evening All, Parents Evening over.
    Seven Points lead.
    Can easily be lost by the Red Team.

    Man United.

  45. couper2802

    Does anyone have a theory as to what bounces actually are?

    They do not seem to make any difference to the outcome at the subsequent election i.e Cleggmania bounce, Romney bounces, Party Conference bounces. I read in the US where they poll the same people that it was that the ‘in the news’ person’s supporters were more likely to respond.

    I find it difficult to believe that people are so fickle and change their vote so easily.

    The first thing to remember is that you don’t need that many people to be ‘fickle’, only a few percent of the population – we tend to exaggerate the effect by looking at changes in ‘lead’ as well. You’ve also got to remember that a lot of people are not attached to any particular Party and maybe not that interested in politics. So their changes in voting intention may be easier and more frequent – perhaps because they feel that no particular Party will be best for them and the country.

    I suspect as well that most movement isn’t between Parties directly but between individual Parties and Don’t Knows. We often refer to these as ‘Non-voters’, but many of them will eventually vote (including some of those alienated enough at the moment to be saying that they won’t).

    A lot of bounces are actually to do with uncommitted voters firming up their intention – often back to their previous one. For example the Romney bounce seems to have caused by this (and started before the debate that he ‘won’); Obama’s potential supporters came in later (perhaps made a bit more hesitant because of his ‘loss’) and cancelled that surge out.

    It’s possible that what a lot of these bounces are is less about people being persuaded to change sides than about them thinking a bit more in ‘voting mode’ and giving a less equivocal answer. Alternatively the ’cause’ of the bounce may make them reconsider how they would have said they vote before and they may shift to Don’t Know.

    And of course a bounce may make a difference if it is still on the way up when election day comes or if it results in permanent changes in attitudes. It’s just in that case we don’t call it a bounce any more.

  46. I think Dave Cameron comes over very impressively today over Libya.

  47. I say just the one thing. Defence policy.

  48. Ann

    Is there one??

  49. @Chris L 1945

    “Can easily be lost by the Red Team.”

    Only if that dastardly linesman, last seen at White Hart Lane, makes an appearance again! Fergie reckons that Mancini has agents operating everywhere, from the corridors of power in the FA, to the Referees Association.

    Paranoia can be an unattractive trait in some, but Fergie carries it off with his customary grace and charm.

  50. @ Neil A

    I agree with you although funilly enough 2 hours later there is an article on the Grauniad about Tory rebels giving him until Summer 2014 before going for confidence vote if the polls don’t improve. Just Westminster gossip in my opinion.

    @ Colin

    An increasing number of millionaires moving to France now (well at least one!) and French GDP expected to return to growth on the back of the sale of Beckham shirts. So your fears about France seem to have been unfounded :-)

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