Is this pointing to another Brown come-back?

Is this pointing to another Brown come-back?

CON 36 (-5) LAB 24(+3) LD 19 (+4)

Blow for Cameron in new Populus poll

The latest Populus poll in the Times looks like a serious blow for the Tories following nine terrible days for Labour.

The voting intention figures above are bad enough but one of the other findings could be very worrying. As the paper puts it “..faced by a straight choice, 44 per cent would still prefer a Labour government and 42 per cent a Conservative one. This is despite 72 per cent dissatisfaction with Labour.

This goes very much against what we’ve seen from other surveys. Almost every month the Telegraph’s YouGov survey asks whether people would prefer to see a Conservative government led by David Cameron or a Labour government led by Gordon Brown?”. In April it was CON/CAMERON 54%: LAB/BROWN 32%.

The difference between YouGov and Populus here is that with the former the leaders’ names are mentioned. Maybe there’s a lesson for Labour there?

The Populus fieldwork took place when the big story was about Labour with the the Tories and Cameron hardly getting a look in – something that can affect outcomes. Also the minor parties are doing particularly well – a hangover from the Euro election and a trend that almost always happens every five years around the time of this election.

It’s always a good indication of how a newspaper regards the findings of a poll that it has commissioned by the reporting. What could be seen as sensational voting numbers here are tucked away near the end of the story.

A few more polls like this, though, and the media narrative might turn – another Brown come-back?

Mike Smithson

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