There is a new YouGov poll published in today’s Sunday Times newspaper showing the Conservatives stretching their lead over Labour to 5%:
Conservative 41% (no change)
Conservative 38% (no change)
Labour 38% (no change)
Lib Dem 11% (down 1%)
They then asked how people would vote if the following were Labour leader, and this is what happened to the Labour lead (zero under Ed Miliband):
David Miliband +3
Ed Balls -6
Tony Blair -6
Alistair Darling -13
Harriet Harman -15
Yvette Cooper -20
Chuka Umunna -26
If David Miliband were leader, the vote shares are Lab 38%, Con 35%, Lib Dem 9% — but the “Others” figure goes up to 18%, which suggests that changing the Labour leader reminds voters that there might be other options.
With David Miliband as leader, Labour attracts support from 8% of Tory voters and 15% of Liberal Democrats.
Andrew Hawkins, chairman of ComRes, says: “Chuka Umunna and Yvette Cooper both are too low profile to reflect fairly how they would rate against the Conservatives.” Their don’t knows (excluded from the figures above) are 50 and 45% respectively.
The poll also suggests that Ed Balls’s change of emphasis this week has gone down badly with Labour voters.
Ed Balls, the Shadow Chancellor, was correct to say that a Labour Government would have to keep all the Coalition Government’s spending cuts
Agree: 43% (Labour voters 33%)
Disagree: 26% (40%)
The leader of the Unite union was right to criticise Labour shadow ministers who “endorse savage spending cuts”
Agree: 31% (Labour voters 43%)
Disagree: 38% (29%)
We also asked about the plan for a present for the Queen’s diamond jubilee:
It would be wrong for the taxpayer to be required to contribute towards the cost of a new royal yacht
Finally, the Prime Minister personal ratings have improved sharply since last month:
David Cameron is turning out to be a good prime minister
Agree 34% (last month 27%)
Disagree 43% (52%)
Net agree -9 (-25)
Ed Miliband is turning out to be a good leader of the Labour Party
Agree 18% (last month 20%)
Disagree 53% (52%)
Net agree -35 (-32)
Nick Clegg is turning out to be a good leader of the Liberal Democrats
Agree 22% (last month 18%)
Disagree 54% (61%)
Net agree -32 (-43)
ComRes surveyed 2,050 GB adults online on 18-19 January 2012. Data were weighted to be demographically representative and by past vote recall.