Beyond belief? An ICM Poll suggests the BLP and Tories are neck and neck… March 24, 2016Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
Earlier in the month a Guardian poll had the following results…
Conservative 36% (-3)
Labour 36% (+4)
Lib Dem 8% (+1)
UKIP 11% (nc)
Green 3% (-1)
SNP 3% (-1%)
Plaid Cymru 1% (nc)
Other 2% (nc)
However, the headline figures are somewhat misleading, and few should be in any doubt of ICM’s view of our own survey. Firstly, both the Conservative and Labour shares are affected by rounding, with the Conservative’s 36.4% being rounded down and Labour’s 35.6% being rounded up, thus creating parity. However, if only 1 or 2 people had fallen a different way on this poll, there would have at least been a 2-point Conservative lead.
Secondly, ICM has developed a new method of turnout modelling, which, we think, much better controls for raw poll samples’ often observed tendency to contain too many Labour voters/intenders. Had we applied our new model, it alone would have resulted in a 3-point Conservative lead on our headline figures. We plan on launching this new modelling in the very near future, although it will remain a work-in-progress.
On the other hand, even if the absolute level of the lead in this poll is off, there has been a significant change in the lead since last month’s poll, and one that is consistent with the ComRes poll at the weekend. Sure the absolute levels of the Tory lead in the two polls is very different (because ComRes have adopted a very different turnout model to ICM), but the trend in the two polls was the same – ComRes had the Tory lead dropping by five points, ICM had the Tory lead dropping by seven points.
Even if there is reason to doubt the size of the lead in this poll or the ComRes poll, the common trend appears interesting – could the Conservative infighting and division over Europe be damaging their support?
I find the dynamics at play here fascinating. It’s as if – and we hear this refrain from Nick Cohen, etc, that the very idea of an LP led by J. Corbyn to be so beyond the beyond that it is impossible it can resonate with the UK electorate. But what if that thesis is incorrect in and of itself. Some who comment here are no fans of Michael White of the Guardian (I like his stuff myself, even if I disagree on some pretty fundamental issues). But he made a point when Corbyn was elected that the latter’s steadiness and patience might begin to appear very attractive as time went one when compared and contrasted with Cameron and a range of other contemporary UK political figure. This doesn’t mean the LP is cruising towards a victory – anything but, but it might mean that the space is there for a consolidation of a somewhat more left wing approach as one that is valid and legitimate in UK politics. That’d be a change.
Meanwhile voting intention stands at CON 33%, LAB 34%, LDEM 6%, UKIP 16%.
UK Polling Report put it nicely:
People were understandably wary of reading too much into one poll, but we now have two polls both showing Labour and the Conservatives neck-and-neck, suggesting something is genuinely afoot.
Perhaps that point White made was indeed prescient.