How do they respond to 9 days of polling reverses?
While all our eyes have been on Washington Labour is only just assimilating the series of huge poll reverses over the past nine days and the question must be asked – is there anything the party can do now to turn things round again.
Just to recall: a week yesterday the Times Populus survey came out putting the Tories on 43% – upping the January deficit from 4 to 10 points.
That survey of itself could have been a rogue till we got YouGov and ComRes at the weekend reporting shares in the same area. The former’s deficit of 13 points compared with the 7 point margin on just a week before. ComRes, which in consecutive surveys at the end of November and early December had reported a margin of just one point now had a deficit of 9 points.
Then to add to all of this there was the dramatic movement in the Ipsos-MORI monitor where the Tories moved 5 to 44% while Labour slipped a similar amount to 30%. Only ICM, of the main pollsters is left to report this month and fieldwork will probably be taking place over the weekend.
It’s hard to conclude anything other than that the Brown “bailout bounce” from October has come to an end and that the “do nothing” charge against the Tories has lost its potency
Even worse, of course, is that we have not seen a survey that was taken after Monday’s dramatic second bailout and the RBS moves. What numbers will these be coming up with?
In many ways the reverses are much harder for the party to swallow because they had just got used to being in the game again and there was maybe a glimmer of hope that the general election could be saved after all.
Meanwhile time moves on and it won’t be long before we’ll be less than a year away from the campaign starting.
Brown showed he had a magic touch in his autumn re-shuffle – does he still have it within him to produce a Plan B?
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