Tories take 9% lead in new ICM poll

Tories take 9% lead in new ICM poll


    But Brown rated “Best PM” by 29-25%

A new ICM poll for today’s News of the World shows a sharp increase in the Tory lead over the past survey by the pollster twelve days ago. The shares are with changes on the last survey CON 39% (+2): LAB 30% (-2): LD 20% (-2).

In slightly contrasting figures Gordon Brown was rated at 29-25% over David Cameron when those in the survey were asked who they thought would be the “best PM”. Cameron beat Brown by 44-34% as being “more in touch with their concerns” and was rated as being “more trustworthy” by 38-33%.

The reason why the voting intention questions and the Brown-Cameron questions seem to be coming out with different pictures is that they are based on different sets of calculations. The former is weighted for likelihood to vote – the latter includes the views of all who were questioned including non-voters.

When the detailed data comes out I would expect that the voting intention result was derived from the answers of about 54% of the sample – the Brown-Cameron numbers from 100%.

I sometimes wish that pollsters could issue two sets of data for their non-voting questions. Those weighted in accordance with likelihood to vote and those based on all the sample.

    For the views of those who say they have little likelihood of voting can really be discarded by those trying to predict and bet on the outcome of elections.

For the Tories there will be some relief that they are back to a significant margin over Labour which would, if repeated at a General Election, put them in with a chance of winning an overall majority.

For Labour
there will be some relief that Brown is rated ahead of Cameron as “Best PM”.

The the Lib Dems there will be disappointment that the pollster that usually shows them with the biggest shares is reporting a fall-back in their position.

In the Labour leadership betting the Brown price has eased somewhat in the past few days from 0.21/1 to 0.25/1. I cannot think of an explanation.

The next scheduled survey by a pollster which qualifies to feature in the PBC Polling Average will be Populus a week on Tuesday.

Mike Smithson

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