There is somewhat less confusion about the actual state of the parties with YouGov’s monthly poll, which tallies with the sort of lead produced by ICM and Communicate during the past week. The topline figures with changes from YouGov’s last poll are CON 39% (+3), LAB 32% (-4), LDEM 16% (nc). YouGov’s last poll was conducted immediately after the Labour conference and was probaby the result of a “Blair boost” from his conference speech. Rather than a sudden Conservative boost, this poll looks more like a return to the sort of figures YouGov had been producing prior to the Conference season.

On a forced choice question asking, if they had to choose, whether people would prefer a Labour government led by Gordon Brown or a Conservative government led by David Cameron, Cameron now leads Gordon Brown by 46% to 33%, a thirteen point lead. This compares to a lead of 7 point lead when the same question was asked in September and a 17 point Labour lead at the last election. When YouGov release the full tables for this poll it will be interesting to see how Lib Dem voters split on the question – I’ve always viewed forced choice questions like this as a potential pointer to the way tactical voting may play in the future.

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