Is the detail from ICM a life-line for Cameron?

Is the detail from ICM a life-line for Cameron?

ICM July 07 Cameron response.JPG

    Should the Guardian’s pollster have followed the Mori approach?

Reproduced above is the detailed finding from the Guardian’s ICM poll that was played big by the paper yesterday and which has sent shock waves throughout the Tory party. It also has been covered extensively in other parts of the media and was the main reason why William Hill opened its “next Tory leader” market.

Yet looking at the options that were put respondents were not offered the chance in both cases of saying “I don’t like the leader and I don’t like the party”.

It does not seem plausible that such a high proportion of non-Tory supporters, – a total of 38% of Labour and 39% of the Lib Dems – were ready to say they liked the Tory party but not the leader or that they liked both. This is hard to credit. The proportion is almost the same with Tory supporters when they gave their view of Labour.

Also a massive 68% of Labour voters were ready to say that they either liked Cameron or the Tories or both. This compares with 53% of the Tory voters who were ready to say the same of Labour and Brown. Eh?

There’s no getting away from the fact that the finding from Tory voters is not good for Cameron but it would have been a lot more damaging if the same response had come if the question had been asked with a full range of options.

I cannot recall a similar question being asked before by ICM and the nearest I can find from another pollster is this from Mori two months ago. The pollster did not provide a party break down but as can be seen the option of not liking either the party and the leader was put.

mori brown v cameron.JPG

From the way I read this the Mori questioning was a lot more coherent.

Whatever the ICM outcome is not good for David Cameron but the finding would have a lot more credibility, surely, if the pollster had followed the Ipsos-Mori approach?

Mike Smithson

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