Boost for Cameron as he reflects on his first six months in the job
A Mori poll in the Sun this morning has some remarkably good news for David Cameron as he ends his first half year as leader. The projected vote shares are with the changes on last month are: CON 41%(+5), LAB 31%(-1), LD 18%(-3).
Such vote shares at a General Election would, according to the Baxter calculator, produce a Commons of CON 344 seats: LAB 251: LD 20 – a Tory majority of 42.
Before we get too excited I will repeat what I always write about Mori polls – whatever the figures are showing. Unlike the other pollsters Mori does not make past vote recall or allegiance calculations to ensure that it has a representative samples. The headline figures are based on those saying they are certain to vote. This is the reason, I believe, why the pollster produces the most variable figures each month. Since November last year the Tories have been in a range of being ten points behind and ten points ahead.
Having said that the trend in the poll is in line with the other pollsters and it does appear that there is real resilience in the Tory position. A month ago, on the Monday after the local elections, I suggested that we might have reached a tipping point. The Mori figures certainly reinforce that.
The big danger for Labour comes when the Tories start being seen as the next Government and people and big interests adjust their positions accordingly. Today’s poll is in the Sun and it’s an interesting question whether Rupert Murdoch will continue backing NuLab – a party that is starting to look like a loser.
The poll comes at an opportune moment for Cameron as those in his party opposed to the way he is taking it are making themselves heard more widely.
For the Lib Dem the 18% share will be a disappointment but they will console themselves with the fact that Mori traditionally gives them low figures.
The big interest is whether the current poll findings will have an impact on the Labour succession – the focus over the weekend.
UPDATE 0800 An aspect of the sample to highlight is that 41% listed “Race Relations and Immigration” as one of their “most important issues facing Britain today. By a big margin this is the highest figure in a Mori poll since the General Election. A brief look back over Mori’s figures seems to indicate a correlation between a high score on this question and the Tory performance.
Thus in November 2005, when Mori was reporting a 10% Labour lead, the proportion was only 25%.