It’s not just been LDs moving to the Tories?
Whenever a new poll comes out now the standard explanation from Labour observers is to observe that much of the change that has seen the Tories move above a 40% share in six consecutive surveys has been the result of Lib Dems switching. Once a replacement for Ming is in place, it is argued, then the Tories will decline.
We saw that overnight with the Independent‘s ComRes survey that had with changes on mid September – CON 41%(+7): LAB 33%(-4): LD 16%(+1)
Yet looking at the detailed data the biggest move to the Tories has not been from the leaderless Lib Dems but from Labour.
One in eight of those who said they had voted for Tony Blair’s party in May 2005 now say they are supporting the Tories. This is about the same proportion as the LD>CON switchers but, of course, there are far fewer of them.
Hopefully we will have the October ICM survey for the Guardian tomorrow and it will be interesting to compare. Both pollsters follow similar methodologies and, indeed, ComRes often uses ICM to carry out its fieldwork.
Another detail from this latest poll also suggests there has been second big trend as well – support for “others” has been showing a marked decline.
In the latest ComRes poll, like last week’s survey from Ipsos-Mori, the total for “others” is down at 6% which is just about the lowest share since the 2005 general election and is even more remarkable given the progress that the SNP is making in Scotland.
Thus just a month ago ComRes had a balance of 14% for “others” while Ipsos-Mori had this at 10%.
Part of this seems to have been caused by a decline in recorded support for UKIP and BNP which looks as though it has gone to the Tories.