Is it because Cameron has been out of the news?
When the MORI poll came out this morning my initial reaction was that what had driven the decline in the Tory share and increase in the Labour one was a big increase in the number of the latter’s supporters saying they were “100% certain to vote”.
We have now just got the detailed data and I was wrong. The level of overall Tory support in the poll was not that much different from February – what has caused the move from a 20 point lead to a 10 point has has been a big fall-off in the Conservative “certain to vote” number. This is absolutely critical with MORI because only those answering 10/10 get included in the final headline figures.
So as the table above shows just 61% of Tory voters answered thus in this latest poll. This compares with 71% in February. Labour had a slight increase in this proportion – from 52% to 54% – but it was a decline in Tory commitment that has caused what must be a disappointing polling outcome for the leader and his close advisers – the group I’m calling the Cameron Quartet.
My long-standing view, as regular PBers will know, is that there is a close correlation between the amount of media coverage that David Cameron gets and Tory polling ratings. Maybe with his return to full-time work he’ll get a lot more attention – and if I’m right then next month’s certainty proportions might be different.
Elsewhere in the detailed numbers the gap between the voting intentions of public sector workers and the rest got much wider. Amongst the “certains” it was CON 31% – LAB 43% amongst taxpayer funded respondents but CON 44% – LAB 30% amongst the rest. In February the public sector Labour lead was just two points.
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