Pollwatch Day 19 #GE2010 – Lib Dem surge still strong (except for News of the World)

Four polls for the Sunday papers have already been published – they are as follows:

    ComRes for Sunday Mirror / Independent on Sunday … CON 34%(-1), LAB 28%(+3), LIB DEM 29%(+2)
    ICM in the Sunday Telegraph … CON 35%(+2), LAB 26%(-2), LIB DEM 31%(+1)
    Ipsos MORI in the News of the World … CON 36%(+4), LAB 30%(-2), LIB DEM 23%(-9)
    YouGov in the Sunday Times … CON 35%(+1), LAB 27%(-2), LIB DEM 29%(nc)

There is also a OnePoll for the People showing the Tories and Lib Dems tied on 32%, with Labour way back in 23%; however, OnePoll, it should be noted, are a new company which do not comply with industry-standard transparency. So – even though it’s a good poll for the Lib Dems – it’s best treated sceptically.

Three of the polls show a similar story: the Tories edging up into the mid-30%s, the Lib Dems hovering around 30%, with Labour in the mid-to-high 20%s. There is one outlier, Ipsos MORI’s poll, which shows Lib Dem support collapsing, and which the News of the World has reported in customary understated fashion as Lib Dem bubble bursts.

Such is the suspicion of Murdoch’s newspapers now, this poll is being dismissed by many as evidence of clear bias. That’s understandable, but I doubt it. Ipsos MORI’s methodology has a habit of producing big and often inexplicable swings. And as Anthony Wells’ UK Polling Report blog notes:

Ben Page of MORI has has just been on Sky – and hats off to him for giving a responsible and measured account of the poll rather than claiming it shows something spectacular. Ben said they’d checked their figures very carefully, scratched their heads, but they have to publish them… but he did re-iterated that one in twenty polls are rogues. That’s about as close as pollsters come to warning that one of their own polls they’ve just released might be a rogue!

Naturally Lib Dem fingers will remain firmly crossed that this is indeed the case!

Read more by .
This entry was posted in General Election and Polls.


  • Philip Young 24th Apr '10 - 7:13pm

    Hmmm….ten days for the Tories to either get through the glass ceiling of 40 per cent, or, benefit by a total collapse of the Labour vote. in order to get to a majority…..and ten days for Labour to ensure Brown doesnt do even worse than the Michael Foot meltdown of 27 per cent….now that Labour have brought in Elvis Presley look-alikes to sing “nobody understands a thing I do” at today’s Gordon Brown photo-call, the campaign-team must be now hoping this new glitz initiative turns the tanker around.

    Cameron has had four years to convince everyone he’s the deal – what on earth are the Tories going to do if they fail for a fourth time?

  • The NoTW is clearly a rogue poll as explained by Mark Senior http://ukpollingreport.co.uk/blog/?p=2635&cp=all#comments

    “The Ipsos Mori data tables are up .
    Voters in 2005

    LibDems gain 22 voters from Con but lose 14 net + 8
    LibDems gain 53 voters from Labour but lose 11 net + 42
    LibDems gain 3 voters from Others

    Total + 53 voters ( 7 1/2% ) of the sample

    That in itself should tell Mori that their headline figure showing LibDems at the same level as 2005 cannot be correct .

    Why is it wrong – simple look at their sample who voted in 2005 It was
    Con 33 Lab 43 LD 15

    It is no good Ben Page scratching his head , the data tables show what is wrong with this poll and why .”

  • Tony Greaves 24th Apr '10 - 8:09pm

    In which case we are up 8 on the last GE? Other polls would have adjusted for this.

    Tony Greaves

  • Well that’s a convincing explanation. Of course part of the problem is people don’t accurately recall how they voted or if they voted – making it difficult for polling companies even if they use weighting.

    The misreporting of this election has been phenomenal. The Times website is running the polls with the view Cameron was widely seen to have won or drawn the 2nd debate – despite all the evidence that it was Clegg who won.

  • 35% is a terrible score for the Tories by any standard, but there is a still a risk that their tough talk on immigration and defence will lure enough working-class Labour voters over to get them past the fnishing post.

  • Mouse, if the UK print media ever had any credibility in the first place, it has well and truly lost it. What is really significant about the current newspaper antics (as Stephen Tall has pointed out) is that two of the so-called quality papers have sunk to similar levels of depravity as the tabloids. Calling Nick a eurocrat and a public school boy is fair game, I suppose, but how did any sane editor think he could get away with smearing Nick as a Nazi?

  • UK polling report says:

    “The Ipsos MORI poll showing a huge drop is probably meaningless, it looks like a rogue, and a lot of the fall will just be down to the sample being less-Lib Dem inclined (10% of the survey reported voting Lib Dem in 2005, compared to 13% in MORI’s previous poll”

    Not sure how that ties up with the 15% quoted by John G.

    Senenco – they still have great power – not least as we have seen by not giving coverage .

    But hopefully this will be the election that broke their power. Even the Daily Mail comments section is
    having trouble copoing with the number of pro-lib dem comments !

  • Anthony Aloysius St 24th Apr '10 - 8:53pm

    Despite the high Lib Dem rating, it will still essentially be the size of the Tory lead over Labour that determines whether Cameron will get a majority. The worrying thing is that – if we discount MORI – that lead is now quite high in two out of three of these polls: 8 points in YouGov and 9 points in ICM. The lead is also 8 points in a BPIX poll released today. Given the expectation that the Tories will perform better than uniform swing would indicate in Lab/Con marginals, on these polls they look like being the largest party and may not be too far from an overall majority.

    Although the ratings have changed by only a few points, the situation looks a lot less favourable than it did last weekend.

  • Anthony Aloysius St 24th Apr '10 - 9:25pm

    “YouGov in the Sunday Times … CON 35%(+1), LAB 27%(-2), LIB DEM 29%(nc) “

    Apparently the Lib Dem figure here should be 28% (-1).

  • Going back to the IPSOS Mori poll, my crude calculation suggests weighting by actual outcome of 2005 results, gives for this latest poll:

    CON 34%
    LD 33%
    LAB 24%

    ..much more encouraging!

  • A hung parliament is still not assured. Lib Dem support should be:
    1- Pursuing every vote in seats where the LDs are first, second or a close third.
    2- Voting Tory in Lab-Con micromarginals to stop another Brown majority
    3- Voting Labour in Lab-Con marginals where Labour start 10%+ ahead to block a Tory majority

  • *Did the NOTW buy an off-the-shelf rogue poll in their latest desperate & shabby attempt to steal the election for the Tories?*

    MORI normally do polls, then sell them, rather than being commissioned by newspapers, and tomorrow’s NOTW carries a poll putting the LibDems third with 23%, way out of line with all the other… polls in tomorrow’ s papers.

    I wonder, just why would the NOTW buy such an obviously rogue poll ?

  • Anthony Aloysius St 25th Apr '10 - 8:52am

    Interesting to see the line Nick Clegg is taking now:
    “Nick Clegg has described Labour as “increasingly irrelevant” and suggested voters face a straight choice between his Lib Dems and the Conservatives.”

    But encouraging further movement from Labour to the Lib Dems in the current situation will almost certainly be of net benefit to the Tories. I suppose it may be that he thinks that if Labour is out of the picture he will also pick up more support from soft anti-Brown Tories.

    But an alternative interpretation is that he may be trying to push Labour into third place in terms of seats. Would he prefer to be the leader of the opposition to a Tory majority government faced with a horrendously unpopular task, rather than holding the balance of power in a hung parliament? If that’s the idea I think it’s a huge misjudgment. Yesterdays polls show the Lib Dems are nowhere near overtaking Labour in terms of seats. I’m sure there’s a limit to how far the Labour vote can be squeezed. Surely it’s time to devote all efforts to attacking the Tories.

  • Anthony Aloysius St 25th Apr '10 - 1:44pm

    “Given the expectation that the Tories will perform better than uniform swing would indicate in Lab/Con marginals, on these polls they look like being the largest party and may not be too far from an overall majority.”

    On the other hand, there’s an article by Peter Kellner in the Sunday Times discussing the effect of the Lib Dem surge in Lab/Con marginals. This is based on aggregating YouGov polling data in 115 marginals before and after the first debate. Surprisingly he finds that, whereas before the debate the swing to the Tories in these constituencies was 6.5% compared with a national swing of 5%, after the debate that difference vanished: the swing in the marginals was 4%, the same as the national swing.

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