Measuring what Lib Dem members think the party is achieving in Coalition

Lib Dem Voice polled our members-only forum recently to discover what Lib Dem members think of various political issues, the Coalition, and the performance of key party figures. Some 500 party members have responded, and we’ve been publishing the full results. This is the final part.

Party members give Lib Dems 7 out of 10 for influence within the Coalition

How would you rate the extent of the Liberal Democrat influence within the Coalition Government, where 10 is highly influential, and 1 indicates no influence.

    1: 1%
    2: 6%
    3: 15%
    4: 11%
    5: 10%
    Lacking influence = 43% (+12%)
    6: 19%
    7: 23%
    8: 11%
    9: 3%
    10: 1%
    Achieving influence = 57% (-11%)

This is the third time we’ve asked the party members who participate in LibDemVoice’s surveys this question, asking you to rank on a scale of 1-10 the level of influence you think the party is exerting within the Coalition. This survey was conducted during the period of controversy over House of Lords reform being dropped, and I suspect that has had some bearing on the results: though 57% give a mark in the upper range (6-10) — indicating the party is exerting influence — this is markedly down on June’s equivalent figure of 68%. The corresponding lacking influence figure is up significantly, to 43%. In other words, Lib Dem members now feel like they are getting much less out of backing the Coalition than they did a couple of months ago. Given the Tories’ breach of faith on the Coalition Agreement over Lords reform, this is unsurprising.

  • Over 1,200 Lib Dem paid-up party members are registered with Some 500 responded to the latest survey, which was conducted between 3rd and 6th August.
  • Please note: we make no claims that the survey is fully representative of the Lib Dem membership as a whole. However,’s surveys are the largest independent samples of the views of Lib Dem members across the country, and have in the past offered accurate guides to what party members think.
  • For further information on the reliability/credibility of our surveys, please refer to FAQs: Are the Liberal Democrat Voice surveys of party members accurate? and polling expert Anthony Wells’ verdict, On that poll of Lib Dem members.
  • The full archive of our members’ surveys can be viewed at
  • * Stephen was Editor (and Co-Editor) of Liberal Democrat Voice from 2007 to 2015, and writes at The Collected Stephen Tall.

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    This entry was posted in LDV Members poll.


    • Where is the 7 out of 10 figure coming from? Is it from June’s 68%?

    • To put these figures in context…
      The mean (average) score from this survey is 5.52.
      If integer numbers were selected at random from 1 to 10, the average would be expected to be 5.50.
      So the score of 5.52 means that party members think that within the coalition, the party neither lacks nor exerts influence but is somewhere in between.
      The results represent a rather more lukewarm judgement than the editorial spin being put on them.

    • Tony Dawson 26th Aug '12 - 2:06pm

      Means and medians are pretty useless with that sort of shaped graph. There are clearly two ‘peaks’ indicating a very-far-from-normal distribution. The Party is split between a group which feels there is rather little influence (about 4/10) and a group which feels there is a moderate amount of influence (about 7).

      Unfortunately, the matter is confused even more by the lack of a clear agreed definition of what ‘influence’ really means.

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