The Lib Dems do 2 points better if Davis wins
The Tories would only perform marginally better against Gordon Brown under David Cameron than David Davis according to an ICM poll in the Sunday Telegraph this morning.
The report makes no reference to the general question on voting intention. We are sure it was asked and we will have to pick it up in a day or so when the full data-set is made available. The last ICM poll two weeks ago had CON 33: LAB 36: LD 22
As a general rule we treat these “what if” polls with some caution but the message is relatively clear – the Tories have a long way to go to compete with a Brown-led Labour under either of the Davids. Even so the 34% Tory share with Cameron has been topped by the party only once in the 56 ICM polls that have been carried out since the 2001 General Election.
For the Lib Dems the poll is worrying with a share of 18% if it’s Brown versus Davis and down to just 16% if it’s Cameron. In the last full ICM poll the Lib Dems were on 22% – so the party would get squeezed with leader changes in both the main parties.
The 16 point Lib Dem vote share facing Brown and Cameron would be lower than the party has achieved in any ICM poll since the 2001 General Election.