Two new voting intention polls today. The first by Survation for Good Morning Britain had topline figures of CON 48%(+1), LAB 30%(nc), LDEM 8%(+1), UKIP 4%(nc). Clearly there is no substantial change since their poll a week ago. Fieldwork was conducted on Friday and Saturday, after the leak of the Labour manifesto, and doesn’t show any sign of any impact.

The second was the weekly ICM poll for the Guardian. Topline figures there are CON 48%(-1), LAB 28%(+1), LDEM 10%(+1), UKIP 6%(nc). As many have noted, ICM are now are, along with TNS, one of only two pollsters still showing Labour support below thirty points (MORI last poll did the same, but that was several weeks ago when everyone showed Labour that low). It’s not that ICM haven’t shown Labour support rising a little. ICM have been showing Labour recovering slightly, it’s just they’ve been doing so at a slightly lower figures: at the start of the campaign ICM had Labour at 25-26% and they now have them at 27%-28%.

This seems to be a consistent methodological difference. The methodological differences between pollsters are complicated and various, and some of them work in opposite directions (ICM, for example, also reallocate don’t knows in a way that helps Labour) but the most obvious one at the moment is probably the approach to turnout. Traditionally British pollsters have accounted for people’s likelihood to vote by getting respondents to estimate their own likelihood to vote – put crudely, they ask people to say how likely they are to vote on a scale of 0 to 10, and then either weight them accordingly (someone who says they are 8/10 likely to vote is only counted as 8/10ths of someone who says 10/10), or apply a cut off, ignoring people who rate their chances below 5/10 or 9/10 or 10/10. Since 2015 several companies, including YouGov and Ipsos MORI, have also factored in whether people say they have voted in the past, weighting down past non-voters.

ICM and ComRes have adopted new approaches. Rather than basing their turnout model on people’s self-reported likelihood to vote, they base it on their demographics – estimating respondent’s likelihood to vote based on their age and social grade – the assumption being that younger people and working class people will remain less likely than older, more middle class people to vote. This tends to have the effect of making the results substantially more Conservative, less Labour, meaning that ICM and ComRes tend to produce some of the biggest Tory leads.

Full tabs for the ICM poll are here and the Survation poll here.

263 Responses to “Latest ICM and Survation voting intentions”

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  1. @Richard

    View seems to be the Tories are relying on Chairman May. Some of the activists are very upset that she praised the EU.

  2. One thing I notice in the ICM poll is the proportion registered to vote, which is sitting around 99-100%, except for students where it is dropping to 78%.

    Surely 99-100% is far too big for a representative sample of the population? I havnt heard any scandals of late about the proportion of voters who are not registered, but this seems miraculously high.

    Since the name of the game is to predict the result of an election, being registered is a prerequisite and pollsters are likely to disregard such people, so not much point talking to them. However with regard to determining the real view of the population, this seems to undermine the validity of the result.

    If an approximation can be made that those registerd have similar views to those not, then it might validly represent the population at large, but presumably the non registered group is biased against supporting any of the established parties (or they would have made efforts to register), and might be supposed disproportionately not to support any of them.

    Presumably the high proportion of students registered at the wrong address reflects difficulties imposed by living in two places for parts of the year. Does being at university in practice discriminate against ability to vote, and to what extent does this difficulty acount for perceived youth apathy?

    While tories will claim the headline 49% support, based upon 35% support amongst those asked which has been corrected up, the lower figure must still be a national overestimate, because of the missing unregistered voters.

    When asking questions about Brexit it is not simply the outcome of an election we are interested in. We want to know what proportion of the nation is leave/remain. How badly are the answers to such questions skewed by the invalid starting sample?


    “For Labour I think the poles are now as good as it gets”

    Oh I don’t know. I don’t think any group of people are beyond improvement.
    (Sorry, couldn’t resist it)

    As regards the ‘polls’, I think you might be right that they won’t improve for Labour, but it will be interesting to see if your precise sequence of events happens as you set it out.

  4. Morning all,

    Looking at the detailed ICM questions the Tories are well ahead in most questions and only slightly behind in three.

    Best PM 47/13, +34 to May and Tories
    Negotiating Brexit 47/13 +34 to May and Tories
    Fairer Britain 29/30 -1 to May and Tories
    Improve public Services 29/31 -2 to Tories
    Best for NHS 29/32 -3 to Tories
    Controlling immigration 42/13 +29 to Tories
    Ensuring good education 31/27 + Tories
    Protecting from threats from abroard 44/14 +30 to Tories
    Pensions 29/28 +1 to Tories.
    Labour only just ahead on NHS and improving Public services. How times have changed.

    May’s lead as best for PM is also 34% in the Survation poll.

    Survation also asked – if you were stranded on a desert island, which of the following party leaders would you want with you the most?
    May wins that by 16 clear points, with Corbyn second.

    Not good reading for Labour in these figures. The cons might have a small concern at the pensions question.

  5. I don’t get this I am going to give May a huge majority to strengthen her hand in EU negotiations and so we will get a good deal.

    Firstly, the EU don’t care how big May’s majority is, it doesn’t effect the EU interests at all.

    Secondly, it is far more likely May needs a majority so she can walk away from EU talks and by giving her huge majority you are actually strengthening the no deal option.

    In my opinion May called the GE to buy herself time – 5 years to weather the shock of WTO.

    I double there will be a deal, getting 27 countries to agree the deal, on terms the UK finds acceptable, is very unlikely full stop and not really credible within 2 years, if the UK does try to get a deal on its terms it is likely UK will still be negotiating in 2022,

    So I reckon the plan is:

    Huge row over summer on ‘divorce’ payment and timings.
    Press stirs up anti-EU sentiment
    Walk out of EU onto WTO in the Autumn
    Weather the massive economic shock
    2022 ‘green shoots’ etc

  6. Further to discussion regarding a section of the Labour PLP uniting with the LibDems, I took a look at the LD web-site.

    The truth is that there are very few areas of policy discord between the Labour right and the LDs. As Carfrew has been quite persuasively pointing out, they are all liberals at the end of the day.

    So there is no ideological barrier to such an alliance. And I suspect they would be temperamentally comfortable with each other.

    And there will be a vacancy at the top: Farron is not going to survive this election.

    So a realignment makes sense. It does need a credible new Leader. David Miliband?

    The key must be securing sufficient numbers amongst the PLP. If they can collectively get to more than the Labour rump then they might well prosper. They have to do it with the LDs as further splitting of the anti-Tory vote in FPTP is a non-starter.

    Oddly enough, the anticipated poor performance of the LDs will facilitate this outcome.

    It would, of course, be New Labour reconfigured.

    It probably won’t happen because of tribal loyalties and instincts, but my point is that there is no serious practical obstacle.

    The name? Probably Progressive Democrats.

  7. COUPER2802

    Interesting scenario, and one I could accept if necessary, since I have waited more than 40 years to leave the EU totally.

    However I think you are too gloomy. I think the EU will come to terms, it’s in their economic interest as well but if not fine by me.

  8. Old Nat – 1.09

    I agree. The Home Office’s behaviour in this, as in other previous cases where religious leaders (usually Christian) have been barred from entering the UK on absurd grounds, is appalling. Unfortunately, with the Telegraph, Mail, Express and other racist newspapers constantly lying to the the population about ‘immigrants’ what can we expect?

    I see that, in the link, John Chalmers is shown wearing his Queen’s Chaplain robe. Perhaps HM ought to be contacted.
    HRH The Princess Royal is this year’s Lord High Commissioner and, for the period of the General Assembly she outranks anyone in the UK other than the Queen herself. Perhaps HRH could overrule the Home Office? It’s worth a try!!

  9. John B

    “Unfortunately, with the Telegraph, Mail, Express and other racist newspapers constantly lying to the the population about ‘immigrants’ what can we expect?”

    I think that’s nonesense.

  10. @Couper

    I think May’s decision to call a GE was motivated mainly by the polls being so favourable. It gave her the clear opportunity for five more years and an increased majority. Simple as that.

    Still in her honeymoon period, anti-Brexit opposition divided, Corbyn in charge of Labour, UKIP collapsing, economy doing better than expected: all circumstances that are favourable.

    And she must have been fearful of a continuing LD revival and a change of Labour leader.

    It looks like a very clever move indeed. I think we can probably all agree on that.

  11. @COUPER 2802

    It’s not about strengthening May ‘s hand in negotiations with the EU. They will decide what they decide. It’s about May ‘s ability to get any deal through parliament. It might, however, concentrate a few EU minds on the idea that if May did decide we needed to walk away there would be nobody who could stop her, always assuming that this is not the EU’s preferred option.

  12. As, indeed, Chris Lane pointed out at 8.30 this morning

  13. And, TOH, it is not ‘nonesense’ (sic) to speak the truth.

  14. @ Millie

    While I agree people may be trying to engineer this I think it would be hard to take along the hard core liberal activists with this approach – in their heartlands like the west country, south west london and scotland they would be very ‘anti’ a merger and suspicious of someone like Milliband just like the previous generation were with David Owen.

    Perhaps with a totally new non-aligned leader, but I still think you would get a rump retaining the Liberal moniker.

    I also struggle to see the USP for such a party, given the LibDems already exist what would be new and attractive about it to the populace at large?

  15. John B

    “It is not nonsense to speak the truth”

    I agree. You should give it a try sometime.

  16. Big jump in inflation to 2.7%. Real incomes now falling.

  17. @John B

    Tarnishing the whole country for the first time blocking of a Church of Scotland invitee is both ridiculous and hyperbolic.

    If indeed there is an unfair visa policy towards certain religious leaders from certain countries then this should be taken up by the local churches with their MPs to enact a change.

  18. @Millie

    Given the small number of Lib Dem MPs, any such merger would basically amount to the hijacking of the party by the Labour right. I can’t see them going along with that.

    Furthermore, while they may be close on some issues, it only takes one disagreement to sink an alliance. And the Labour party is fundamentally illiberal on issues such as surveillance and civil liberties. The sort of people who backed Blair’s push for indefinite detention without charge are not going to find a welcome among the Lib Dems.

  19. @TOH

    I think it’s the only way you will actually get out of the EU. Otherwise it will be a decade of fudge. Every EU country will want their pound of flesh, that’s 27 pounds of flesh. Trade deals with the rest of the world cannot be negotiated until U.K. out of EU, so you can see how this will drag on.

    I am not sure of the mechanics of leaving and going onto WTO.

    The border with NI, the EU will want to secure that border as its the border of their single market? So we could probably do nothing at the border in the first few months and leave that to the EU. I.e. Make it a EU problem

    The move to WTO tarrifs but this will mean a big increase in customs work so we’ll need lots more customs people. The tariffs are set out and other than needing more capacity at customs posts it could work.

    Rights of EU nationals would still be a negotiating but no reason that can’t be negotiated from outside the EU.

    So it is not impractical.

  20. @BARDIN1

    Agree with all of that – I am not an advocate.

    But the big differences are: firstly, with sufficient PLP numbers the party would have instant credibility, and secondly, a new image is probably desirable – its a chance to drop a lot of baggage.

    So its no good going back to Blair, Mandelson and Clegg.

  21. @ Alec – indeed , and my wife returned from a trip yesterday seething at a 30p price hike for coffee at Starbucks – can’t see if that is true across the board, but if so it would follow a 20p increase at Costa on February – both way ahead of inflation.

    May calling the election before this filters through and people wake up and smell the coffee price hike?

  22. @ Millie

    yes, good points and probably worth a shot for the right/ centrists in the PLP, maybe with some of the older hands (eg the ex cabinet members?) at the LibDems in tow

  23. @Imperium3

    You have a point, but the divisions within Labour are far greater and more acrimonious than those between the Labour Blairites and the LDs. All parties are coalitions.

    I would imagine the Labour right could be comfortable with every current LD policy, probably with the exception of legalising cannabis.


    I forgot to mention another big difference – the new party would only be taking on the Corbynite rump of Labour rather than the entire party.

  24. @Milile @Bardin1

    Such a move would make for an interesting spectacle – morphing the current Labour Civil War into a new Lib Dem Civil War.

    I think we could book the Tories in until the mid-2030s if we are left with a hard left Labour and a ripped apart Lib Dem party.

    Realistically there will have to be a new party formed.

    Maybe they can call it the SDP?

  25. @alec,

    Yep 2.7% big increase. What’s worrying is that anecdotally it still feels higher to me.

  26. Social Democrat Wars 2: The Force Awakens

    Starring David Milliband as David Owen, Harriet Harman as Shirley Williams and Nick Clegg as David Steel

    … well maybe not…

  27. @couper2802

    Re WTO the UK would need to agree tariff schedules and quotas for all products etc with all 160 WTO members. The UK Govt has already begun the task of preparing schedules based on the EU’s Common External Tariff.

    You are right to point to the customs issues. It’s not simply a question of numbers of staff (although somewhat incredibly HMRC said a fewmonths ago that they don’t know how many staff they have where!). It’s also a question of physical infrastructure capacity at ports.

    The Irish/NI border is very difficult as presumably the UK Government would not want a leaky border as it clearly invalidates the whole point of “taking back control”. Perhaps special status for NI with UK border controls on Great Britain? Not great for the Unionists in NI and of course reads across to Scotland.

    The EU’s CET would be pulverising for agriculture, foods and drinks (very important for Scotland) and we would probably see the migration of major car manufacturing to the EU. A recent survey of EU firms already showed iirc nearly half planning to reduce their UK sourcing of supplies and a quarter planning to source entirely in the EU. Without agreement on passporting, expect major dislocations in financial services.

    So WTO terms in March 2019 ( just 22 months from now) would be disastrous for the UK probably not so much for the EU.

  28. @Bardin1

    Exactly as well as the WTO issue there is also the issue that people have not felt the effects of Brexit yet but we shortly will.

    It worries me that Scotland after 7 elections in 3 years are not paying enough attention to this one – and we could end up undermining the case for another referendum – which will box us into Brexit we didn’t want no matter how bad it is.

  29. Sea Change 9.34

    ‘Tarnishing the whole country for the first time blocking of a Church of Scotland invitee is both ridiculous and hyperbolic.
    If indeed there is an unfair visa policy towards certain religious leaders from certain countries then this should be taken up by the local churches with their MPs to enact a change.’

    This is not ‘the first time’ as you claim. My own church has, on several occasions, had invitees to Assembly blocked from entering the UK.
    And also people refused visas for attending weddings.
    And visas refused for attending funerals.

    On no occasion was there the slightest possibility that the people concerned would stay beyond the time requested, but the Home Office sees fit to assume that everyone is a criminal until proven otherwise.

    Old Nat is quite correct: the UK is not a very pleasant place to live at the moment.

  30. On a new party emerging like a phoenix. I agree that the Labour brand is possibly so tarnished it might be as well creating a new party. BUT it needs a leader, I am waiting for a leader to emerge but I don’t see one. David Miliband is the only person mooted would he be good & charismatic enough?

    That would leave the rump Labour under Corbyn – what % would that party command. The people that always vote Labour and those that are left wing so say 20%.

    The centrist ‘New Labour’ party would have to steal voters from the Tories, pushing Tories right into UKIP territory.

    So you end up with

    Labour 20% (similar to LibDems pre-2015)
    Tories 35% (2015 UKIP + right wing Tories)
    New Labour 35% (Tories, LibDems, Labour)

    So in 2022 we could be looking at a battle between Cons and New Labour – with a chance of a New Labour win,

  31. Some painful reading on inflation for Brexiters.

    UK – 2.7%
    France – 1.17%
    Italy – 1.81%
    Sweden – 1.87%
    Germany (March) – 1.58%

    It’s getting a bit difficult to argue that inflation is nothing to do with Brexit, as some have done by comparing our rates to other EU country rates.

    It’s also worrying that the core inflation rate, which strips out volatile things like food and energy, has jumped by 0.5%, which suggests more and longer term inflation is still to come.

    There is a grim satisfaction for me in these figures, and also the fact that the BoE increased their 2017 forecast last week from 2.4% to 2.7%.

    Earlier in the year I did raise the point that the BoE seemed way off the mark with their inflation forecasts, and it hasn’t taken very long for me to go one nil up in my 2017 match up with Carney.

    As with @Rich, I suspect there is more to come. It could be 2-0 by half time.

  32. Here is my weekly round-up of VI averages with Week 4 now concluded:

    Week 1: 47-26-11-8-3 +21
    Week 2: 46-29-10-7-3 +17
    Week 3: 47-28-10-7-3 +18
    Week 4: 48-31-9-5-2 +17

    Cons-Lab-LD-Ukip-Grn Cons Lead

  33. @Hireton – if we don’t get customs free trade it we certainly be a massive issue.

    A few months ago the hauliers groups warned of the issues at Dover. Since we joined the EU, traffic volumes have expanded massively. The geographic location of the port means that there simply isn’t the space to add any new customs processing areas, even if the staff were available. The only option would be to cut traffic to around 30% of the current level or use the road network aka Operation Stack.

    They argued that there is no recognition of these basic facts within government, nor any planning to mitigate them.

    Either this means that the government really is completely stupid and deaf to common sense, or May knows full well that a deal will be made.

    If it’s the former, then that is bad news all round. If it’s the latter, it means the EU have us over a barrel, and that could still be somewhat bad news all round, but very bad for Brexiteers and mildly amusing for the more sensible ones.

  34. John B

    “And, TOH, it is not ‘nonesense’ (sic) to speak the truth.”

    Except it’s not true IMO.

  35. Inflation, well it feels higher to me as Tesco appear to have done away with their value range. I don’t think this has been mentioned in the media.

    This has made a significant difference to our household.

    Alternatives are double or more the price of the removed value product.

  36. ALEC
    Big jump in inflation to 2.7%. Real incomes now falling.

    No surprise to us both.

  37. @Alec,

    Don’t you think interest rates should have gone up slightly a while back? Maybe politically they can’t at the moment, but surely next parliament they have to.

  38. John B

    “Old Nat is quite correct: the UK is not a very pleasant place to live at the moment.”

    That’s just the opinion of OLDNAT and yourself. Many would disagree as I do. In some ways despite my age and health issues i have never been happier. I know you have some personal worries and understand why you don’t feel that way.

  39. Well my grandparents who lived to mid 90s both said in nearly a century of living, the worst period they lived under was Labour the 70s. Just to offer a different perspective to Oldnat. My grandad said he had to walk to work past rubbish piled high and the streets stank, with even rats running round!!! Loads of industries on strike, 3 day week etc.

  40. Bardini
    “….but I still think you would get a rump retaining the Liberal moniker.”

    As I pointed out a few days ago, there already are candidates standing as Liberals, and some as ‘Lib GB’ – presumably a splinter group of a splinter group.

    “Trade deals with the rest of the world cannot be negotiated until U.K. out of EU…”

    Perhaps they can’t be signed off, but do you really think no negotiations are taking place on the quiet?

    “Tesco appear to have done away with their value range. ”

    Not true round here.

    I agree entirely with your stance that a bit of short-term economic inconvenience is a price worth paying for independence. I presume that this is a similar attitude to that of the Scots Nats. Also, to those of us who remember annual inflation in the 20% range 2.7% is insignificant.

  41. Brexit unpleasantness does seem to be real.
    To avoid blow ups please remember I am not accusing anyone here of anything.

    Twice in the last week two different groups of people have shouted abuse at my partner, both times leaving the EU was part of the diatribe.

  42. Alec

    You seem to be glorying in bad news on inflation that we both forecast and I see you make a silly comment about 2-0 at halftime. I find it a rather childish attitude for a mature person.

    The thoughful Brexiteers like myself have always forecast there would be some initial pain as we leave and were prepared to accept that cost for the long term benefits we expect, so you are crowing too soon. Yes, there will be more pain to come, and yes it will be worth IMO.

  43. RICH

    Your grandparents got it spot on. I lived through the 70’s and it was a dreadful time. The 80s were like a huge breath of fresh air.

  44. A new UKIP hoarding in a farmer’s field on the M40:

    “Say No to Sharia Law”

    Because that’s such a major issue in rural Oxfordshire.

    Confirmation that, now that their raison d’etre is gone, UKIP are devolving back into BNP Lite. And their VI is accordingly headed in that direction.

  45. Pete b, see if they still have value dog mixer, washing liquid, laundry liquid, Value flan, bacon, tissues, toilet roll, coffee, orange squash.

    All gone, it must just be Bristol then. Gits.

  46. MARKW

    Totally unacceptable behaviour and nothing to do with people like myself who strongly favour Brexit. You have my sympathy and support.

  47. @johnb

    I think we are also seeing the racist and extreme right emboldened by Brexit and the atmosphere being created by the Tory party election strategy.
    Recent examples are the Conservative Party candidate and previous MP thinking it appropriate to tell a schoolgirl in a school political debate to “f*** off back to Scotland” because she expressed support for Scottish independence. A Conservative councillor tweeting racist remarks against Ireland and gypsies over the weekend. Several Tory councillors in Scotland who have been shown to have had active links with organisations such as Britain First and the BNP or to have publicly expressed extreme views with no action taken by the Scottish Conservatives beyond a mild rebuke. And of course the head of the Orange Order in Scotland in a recent newspaper interview envisaging circumstances in which it would become a paramilitary resistance organisation to an independent Scotland.
    Not.of course representative of all or even the great majority of British nationalists but there does seem to be a growing problem in their ranks and it would be reassuring to see the British nationalist parties such as the Tories recognising it more by word and action.

  48. ToH, thanks Howard. I know you are a good man.

  49. @Rich – “Well my grandparents who lived to mid 90s both said in nearly a century of living, the worst period they lived under was Labour the 70s. ……. Loads of industries on strike, 3 day week etc.”


    For the thousandth time, the three day week was under the Tories.

    Interesting to note though that in certain ways, people’s perceptions are simply wrong. The 1970’s was much better for rising real living standards for ordinary people, but this gets lost in the folk memory and the sense that everything was falling apart back then.

    @Rich (again) yes – I’ve said for a long, long time that interest rates should have risen. They were actually cut in the immediate aftermath of the Brexit vote, which was, I think, a mistake.

    The BoE should have allowed markets to readjust to the result in a more honest manner. This would have been somewhat painful, but was a necessary correction to the myths that have and are being created by Brexit supporters, which may, ultimately, lead to a disastrous leave strategy. A proper dose of reality in the immediate aftermath of the vote would have increased the chances for a reasonable and less painful leaving deal.

    Wider than that, I have been arguing for a signal that rates have turned for a long time before the referendum. On many metrics we are now at a similar point to where we were prior to the crash with regards asset values, debts and consumer overreach. The government has handed over responsibility for generating growth to the BoE, which isn’t it’s job, and the imbalances are very serious.

    There was a case for ultra cheap money in the immediate post crash period, but this has now become the new normal, and at some point this is going to come back to bite us.

  50. @TOH – “You seem to be glorying in bad news on inflation that we both forecast and I see you make a silly comment about 2-0 at halftime. I find it a rather childish attitude for a mature person.”

    Read again, carefully. I wasn’t saying anything about Brexiters there, but instead glorying in the fact that I got it right and ex Goldman Sachs banker Carney got it wrong.

    This is, however, still ‘a rather childish attitude for a mature person’, but if they paid me 2% of what they pay Carney I would stop it straight away! :)

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