Has Dave got a poll dividend from the Co-op?

Has Dave got a poll dividend from the Co-op?

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    Is the Co-operative Party’s specially commissioned poll an own goal?

We have not had a new voting intention poll for nearly a fortnight and with so much going on I’ve popped into a cyber cafe (I’m still in France) to see if there’s anything that can point to the way opinion is moving. This from YouGov is a poll that had been commissioned by the Co-operative party – which is an integral part of the movement – and we can assume that Labour’s spin machine was involved.

The survey finished on September 6th, almost a week later than the previous poll from the firm, so would have been affected by Gordon Brown’s frenzied first few days of activity after his break. It’s clear that voting intention questions were asked of the 2160 people in the sample but these were not computed into headline voting figures.

From what is available it is possible to make an extrapolation of the figures. This produces approximate shares of CON 36%: LAB 39%: LD 15% with the rounding up and down indicating a Labour lead of 2-3%. So overall it is very similar to the previous one a week earlier – indicating at that stage very little reaction to Brown’s “big tent” moves.

    So why were these figures not included? Could it be that when the Co-operative Party commissioned the survey YouGov had Labour at 8-10% ahead and when the figures came back the lead was nothing like what they expected?

As we saw with the ‘”leaked” Populus survey from the the Tories a fortnight ago both main parties are using polls as key weapons and we should not take anything at face value. Labour desperately wants to destabilise Cameron while the Tories are equally desperate to show they are still in the game.

Just to reiterate – these numbers are based on my calculations not YouGov’s. Anyway let’s hope there are some proper surveys this weekend.

Mike Smithson

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