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Yes - hopefully the DimLibs will keep Labour-leaning Ming for the next election. We need to be running a Save Ming campaign.

What this site needs, editor, is a permanent thread showing the development of the poll figures over time perhaps annotated with important preceding political events in case a pattern emerges. As I have said before the only poll I place any faith in is Yougov (as I am on its panel and they can always ask me) as it has been the best predictor of the last few elections.

However, this poll is disastrous for us. The Labour party is imploding before our eyes. Pensions, gold reserves, Labour hates Brown, Blair's entire entourage allegedly criminals - and we are down four points. The poll of polls has had us 37% +/- 1% ever since I joined this blog months ago.

Cameron's strategy is not working if he intends a Conservative government. People are voting BNP rather than us - how desperate for hope and trust do they have to be to do that?
Of course, some people think he intends a Lib/Con pact, in which case he is playing a blinder.

The poll is from a real and highly reliable pollster in ICM. A 4 point drop in a month is not good news. However as a canvasser, I am just sure this is MOE stuff. I feel certain we will make enormous gains on May 3rd.

I don't see the LDs doing well, but agree they need to keep Ming, perhaps wish them on to big gains vs Lab, big losses to us and a net 85 gain?

Jonathan, I make no bones that this figure is disappointing after last month, but as Graeme Archer (a professional statistician) and many others have constantly pointed out, the ConHome poll of polls truly is meaningless due to its methodology.

Martin Baxter's current "poll of polls" predictor has the Conservatives short 1 of a majority, for example.

Given that we are contesting 88% of the seats up for grabs vs. 64% for the Lib Dems and 10% for others, I expect Conservatives will do well - who are Lib Dem and UKIP voters going to support is there isn't a candidate standing for their party? Cons, me thinks.

"Where the Tories need to do the work is stop support flowing to 'The Others'. A massive effort needs to be made over the next two years of persuading voters that the only sure way of ousting Labour is to vote Conservative".

That surely is the key message and we should stop bothering whether we go up or down slightly in succeeding opinion polls.

Only a major party can get rid of this "dishonest, dishonourable and dishonoured" government and we must produce policies to stop would-be conservatives from flirting with minor parties.

The party has not been focused enough on defeating the Lib Dems. Cosying up to them over Greg Dyke indicates that the folk in CCHQ are not focused on defeating them.

who are Lib Dem and UKIP voters going to support is there isn't a candidate standing for their party? Cons, me thinks.

I think they'd rather do a 'Zizzi' before doing that Justine.

Thanks David. We're in strong agreement.

It matters enormously where the Lib Dems support is coming from. This poll suggests a Tory fall and Lib Dem rise, but the trend in polls across recent months suggests that the Lib Dems are drawing from Labour while losing voters to us. If so, their poll position could be flattering in terms of seats (council and Parliamentary) as they pick up votes in safe Labour areas and lose them in the south and Midlands....

Remember Liberals in the early/mid 20s works for us if they take predominantly from Labour. The Alliance scored 26% in 1983 at the high watermark of Tory success and the Labour Party scored 28%. We could be moving towards such a dynamic again....

At the risk of raining on this parade, I think Conservatives are getting too complacent about the Lib Dems and Brown. Look at it from the other side, Libs are essentially a 'local' party and the leadership is far less of an issue for voters even at the General election. The voters know that they aren't likely to be electing a Lib PM. Cons should be much more concerned that Nationally they get a boost from good results, after the May elections. Also Gordon Brown will take some heart from this poll. Even after a series of disasters for the Govt, with avery unpopular PM, the principal Opposition is still below 40% in the polls. Remember in 2003, when the Govt was still very strong and the PM popular the Cons made 600 gains on 35% in the polls. There is still a great deal to do to persuade the electorate that even though at the mid term point, they think it is, 'time for a change' it is time for the Tories. They can be quite fickle sometimes and even say, 'none of the above....'

I think you'll find a large number of Lib Dem and UKIP voters would vote Conservative in the absence of a candidate from their party.

By the way, it's Justin, not "Justine" - unless you know something that I don't!

Why vote Tory is my question? At least you know who the LibDems are. You could end up with a government stuffed with Greg Dyke appointments if you vote Cameron.

One further point, I think the strategy to woo over Lib Dem voters, not supporters of minority parties, is essentially right. This point has been made again and again on other threads, so I won't repeat the arguments.

"Why vote Tory is my question? At least you know who the LibDems are"

You 'aving a bleedin' lauff?

Umbrella man: "You could end up with a government stuffed with Greg Dyke appointments if you vote Cameron."

Thank you. A killer quotation and the real insight provided by Dykegate. It is impossible now to believe that Cameron will defend conservatism. He'll make any deal, any appointment, any policy change that'll get into into power and then keep him in power. People are increasingly seeing him as an opportunist and I'm glad to see his poll rating DOWN 4%.

Remember Liberals in the early/mid 20s works for us if they take predominantly from Labour. The Alliance scored 26% in 1983 at the high watermark of Tory success and the Labour Party scored 28%. We could be moving towards such a dynamic again.
There is a difference in that the Liberal Democrat vote is much more focused than the Alliance vote was back then, in 1997 on 16% of the vote they got more seats than the Alliance ever had even before the 1983 General Election. On similar votes to the Alliance in the 1980's with the other 2 main parties on a low vote they could end up with over 100 seats, in such a situation in a Hung Parliament it would be possible that Menzies Campbell could end up leading a minority Liberal Democrat government just as in 1924 Ramsay McDonald ended up leading a minority Labour Government with only about the same number of seats as the Conservatives got in 1997 & 2001.

"Why vote Tory is my question?"

Well I vote Tory as I want a a party that sharply increases 'green' taxes, outspends Labour on the NHS, protects europhile MEP's and uses discrimination to impose candidates of one sex into a prime selection position.

09:33 post by David is spot on.

It might be interesting to analyse the local election results in Warrington, particularly the 12 wards of Warrington South that are up for election this time. The L/Ds are the dominant force, however there is a belief that they have peaked, coupled to which the Conservatives are at long last moving forward and Labour are either static or more likely continuing their decline.

In 2004 for Warrington as a whole the share was as follows (all 57 seats up for election):

C 20.3%
L 34.4%
L/D 41.9%
O 3.4%

In 2006(19 seats up for election):

C 25.2%
L 28.6%
L/D 43.2%
O 3.1%

Both on similar turnouts of about 35%

In the Appleton Ward where I stand last year I managed to increase our share of the vote from 23% to 29% with 1015 votes compared to the L/D with 2341. Turnout tends to be similar each year so the task I have to get to 1800 votes to be in with a chance is no small one.....but you never know!

Further confirmation that the Liberal Democrats are on the way up.

If there is no Lib Dem candidate why on earth would a Lib Dem supporter vote for the enemy?

This is no surprise. The Tory lead is soft.

Several friends and close relatives are very disappointed by Cameron's performance, especially the political correctness and new air travel taxes and rationing. They see Dave as a Blairite phoney and are switching to the Lib Dems and UKIP. These figures suggest that they are not alone.

It would be interesting to see the poll figures if the Lib Dems were led by Nick Clegg. He would give Cameron real competition.

Justin said - "Who are Lib Dem and UKIP voters going to support if there isn't a candidate standing for their party? Cons, me thinks".

They will stay at home as they did in Bromley. No point in turning up for 3 parties with identical policies and media packages, none of which reflect real voters' views, and few of which can be delivered due to EU and goivernment interference in local governament. Either that or they will go in order to spoil the ballot paper by writing their party of choice across it... which a number of people have told me they plan to do.

Fortunately this time over 1000 wards and Assembly divisions have UKIP candidates, so more voters than ever (several million) will have a choice, instead accepting the vanilla politics of the big 3 parties.

There is a big difference between Cameron and Clegg, TFA Tory... Clegg is not all things to all men.

As previously highlighted:
“Where the Tories need to do the work is stop support flowing to 'The Others'. A massive effort needs to be made over the next two years of persuading voters that the only sure way of ousting Labour is to vote Conservative.”

Agreed. Being the biggest opposition party is a huge advantage, but there is a risk in thinking that that fact alone is enough and that we can get away with “more of the same”. We need distinctive policies presented with conviction.

New poll shews Tory lead decrease: cue Horde A telling us this proves Cameron is an election-loser, and Horde B telling us this proves Cameron needs to modernise the party even more.

New poll shews Tory lead increase: cue Horde A telling us that Cameron should be leading by 90% or whatever, and Horde B telling us Cameron is infallible.

Other news elsewhere: England cricket team beaten; it's raining in April; police promise big crackdown on drugs; famous sportsman dies; lawyers accused of making too much money; media criticised for intrusiveness; Pope still Catholic.....

God's in His heaven, all's right with the world.

The rest of the Guardian article makes pleasing reading:

"Mr Brown has a narrow one-point lead - 40% to 39% - over David Cameron as the man voters think would be most likely to take the right decisions when the going got tough. But the Tory leader has closed the gap since September when the question was last asked. Then, he trailed the chancellor by seven points, 32% to 25%.

That strengthening of Mr Cameron's underlying position is mirrored in two other character questions. He has a six-point lead over Mr Brown as the man voters think has the most potential as prime minister, 43% to 37%.

He also has an 11-point lead as the person voters think would be most likely to take Britain in the right direction. When asked in September last year, voters picked him by six points over Mr Brown, 31% to 26%. Now he scores 45% to Mr Brown's 34%.

The poll, in line with recent results from ICM and other companies, also suggests that Mr Cameron could be headed for a narrow overall majority in an election facing Mr Brown as Labour leader.

In that situation, Conservative support would rise to 40% - three points lower than ICM's finding last month. Labour lags 12 points behind on 28%, the same as last month. The Liberal Democrats would score 20%."

[email protected]:01, Although I'm not part of the ConservativeHome team, my new website may prove to be of interest to you. You will be able to plot graphs of selected poll results, and view seat prediction figures which will have been formulated using a variety of techniques. The end aim is that by looking at a single page you should be able to see the best, worst and most likely outcome for each of the parties.

The site will hopefully go live by the start of July.

It will be interesting to see what effect the rubbish collection issue has on the vote in the local elections. Tory councils seen as responsible for fortnightly collections may suffer.

Oh dear. I thought the Lib Dems were supposed to be on the way out, and here they are going up in the polls. Have I been given duff information on Conservative Home?

The poll shows Conservative support leaking away. Perhaps it s time for Mr Cameron to put his finger in the Dyke.

Sounds good Chris, I look forward to it.

Maybe this is all a stunt of fate to make Tory gains on May 3 look even better, like last year when everyone thought we'd be going backwards.

I recall that although polls show a large gap when the issue is between Cameron and Brown, when the issue is Cameron and the Conservative party and Brown and the Labour party the gap narrows. At election time, therefore, we should expect the gap to narrow, particularly local elections.

Perhaps we need to ask why electors are put off by Conservatives in general. I suggest some of the postings on Conservative Home would encourage people to believe Labour's rhetoric.

Good news. I think the opposition have to take a small part of the credit for Labour's poorer showing recently. Effective opposition is as much about attacking the record of the government as promoting your position, in-fact the two should jive nicely together. The Conservatives, as Blair conceded this week, are at last effective in opposition, and (I would like to add) he has a dammed cheek accusing us of being policy light. His government are in power now, today, and are doing nothing creative or positive to improve the lot of British people, are going to get kicking in Scotland – threatening the Union, a kicking in England locals and are blundering from one ill conceived reform, ban, criminalising act, cut or re-organisation be it Health, Tax, Economy, Education or Defence.

As for the Lib-Dems: out-of-date, irrelevant and essentially pointless. This shower harbour the lofty ambitions of wooing a disaffected Labour vote, many of whom are really disaffected Tories we lost to New Labour years ago, but are now very close to by-passing Lib-Dems entirely on the route to us.

No, Project Cameron does have a long way to go, but considering the depths we plunged to, I believe it’s on track, and doing remarkably well.

Oberon

Thank you for the second opportunity at 1940 on this thread to read again the post you originally made at 1902 on another thread.

Mr Brown has a narrow one-point lead - 40% to 39% - over David Cameron as the man voters think would be most likely to take the right decisions when the going got tough. But the Tory leader has closed the gap since September when the question was last asked. Then, he trailed the chancellor by seven points, 32% to 25%
This amounts to those unsure making up their minds on David Cameron and Gordon Brown. It leaves only 21% still unsure or thinking there is no difference.

Perceptions of Gordon Brown will alter once he has become Prime Minister, he has been a backroom figure although a very powerful one and now is moving to being right on the frontline.

People are getting sick of endless policy by focus group and actually Gordon Brown's clear view of things more deeply philosophically based than Tony Blair's probably will go down much better.

Oberon Houston - go on underestimating the Liberal Democrats at your peril.

Bill, yes sorry, I posted it onto the wrong thread the first time. oops.

TimberWolf - Yes you are right, we shouldn't underestimate the Lib Dems, my comments were personal feelings rather than electoral ones really. Their underhand and often opportunistic hipocritical positioning to grab any votes going has proved a thorn in our side.

I would expect a Conservative so knowledgeable about hypocracy to know how to spell hypocritical.

TimberWolf - Surely you are not suggesting that a Conservative could not be anything other than absolutely straightforward, truthful and honest?

Stranger things have been known to happen.

Shame on you.

Yes TimberWoof I've got a dyxlexic tendency and my spelling can be atrosious somethimes.

Problem in Chipping Norton where Cameron is MP with a masssive majority is talk in the pubs about Dave's "all things to all men"attitude and support for Tory and former Tory (now Ind)candidates who had poor references and were known as very dodgy characters.If Dave can't get his local party to check out candidates he is endorsing what chance will there be if he makes it to PM.The cash for honours scandal will be mild by comparison

Why would anyone vote ukip ata local electtion! what would they do pull out of the town hall. UKIP seem to be there to hurt the tory vote which ironically is the most euro sceptic party of the three that matter a vote for ukip is as good as voting labour or Lib Dem.

As for knowing what you get from the Lib Dems there whole policy is based on the last person they spoke to

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