But survey shows he’d be 5 point behind Brown
As a curtain-raiser for their Tory leadership debate today Sky News has commissioned YouGov to test different Tory-Labour leadership combinations. It’s headline conclusion is that the 39 year-old cyclist, David Cameron, is ahead of Tony Blair. In a form of polling that forces respondents to choose between two options without any regard for any other party these were the main splits:-
We’ve said it before in this leadership contest and we will say it again – we do not like this form of forced questioning because the answer is artificial and it completely ignores the Lib Dems and support for other parties.
There has been no indication in any of the main General Election voting intention surveys that the leadership contest has given the Tories a boost. The last main YouGov poll at the end of October had Labour eight points ahead of the Tories with the Lib Dems on 19. Two days ago ICM was showing a Tory deficit of five points with Cameron’s party still stuck on 33% – the share it got on May 5th.
For the Tories the significance of the poll is that it’s a taster for the likely media honeymoon that Cameron will enjoy after, as he surely will, he is announced as formal winner of the contest on December 6th.
For Labour the survey will have little effect. There have been many polls showing that the party would do better under Brown than Blair and the incumbent of Number 10 is still firmly entrenched.
The key polls will be the General Election voting intention ones from December onwards. Latest prices on the betting markets rate Labour’s chances of being top party in terms of seats next time at 59%.
With so many votes having been posted in the Tory leadership contest the latest poll and today’s SkyNews debate will have little impact.