Good and bad news for Labour from this month’s political trends report by Ipsos Mori.
First the good news: The party is re-establishing a clear lead on the NHS – the issue on which David Cameron has worked so hard to win voters’ trust. Since March 2010, the percentage of people who think the Tories have the best policies on the NHS has gone from 24 to 21, while Labour has risen from 33 to 37.
Ed Miliband’s stag do will be a very “Miliband affair” as it will take place at his home and partner Justine will be there, writes Allegra Stratton of the Guardian in her increasingly must-read column*.
How does this fit with Ed’s attempts to portray himself as a down-to-earth man of the people? Read more
Peter Kellner of YouGov has an excellent piece in the Sunday Times looking at polling in marginals Before Clegg (BC) and After the Debate (AD). It overturns another big election assumption: that the Tories will perform better in marginals.
He uses a combined sample of 10,000 from past YouGov polls to examine the 115 Lab-Con marginals that should turn blue with a swing of eight per cent. Read more
A unanimous consensus is always something to be wary of, particularly when it doesn’t quite reflect the evidence available.
So when eight of Britain’s top pollsters all predict a Conservative majority — in spite of current polls indicating there’s a strong chance of a hung parliament — it is worth unpacking their hunch.
Given all the uncertainties in this election campaign, why do all eight forecasts fit in a range of about 40 seats? Is there something they know that we don’t? Read more
National Insurance: 46 per cent back Tory plans to reverse National Insurance rise. But, if a tax has to go up, 55 per cent prefer to raise National Insurance rather than VAT (YouGov/Sunday Times)
Marriage tax break: 19 per cent are more likely to vote Tory because of marriage tax break (YouGov/Sunday Times). But 59 per cent think the tax break should go to unmarried couples too (ICM Sun/Telegraph) Read more
A remarkable IpsosMori/Reuters poll in some of the marginals David Cameron must win to secure a majority. The overall numbers show a swing of 5.5 per cent to the Tories — which is short of an overall majority.*
But the most striking finding is the renewed confidence in Gordon Brown’s leadership. Cameron loses on every count. I’ll leave it to these charts to tell the story. Read more
What is behind the dip in Tory poll numbers? Read more