Labour move to highest ICM share since April

Labour move to highest ICM share since April

CON 42%(42)
LAB 29%(25)
LD 19%(21)
OTHERS 10% (12)
[LAB/CON 69% (59.5)]

But they are still in the 20s with the Tories in the 40s

The latest survey in the longest standing polling series in the UK – ICM in the Guardian – has some good news for Mr. Brown following Labour’s by election success in Glasgow last Thursday. Although the Tories are on a standstill at 42 Labour sees a sharp move upwards of four points.

My guess is that the detailed data will show that the change has been largely down to Labour supporters being more certain about voting rather than that much switching between the parties – something that I suggested in a previous post might happen in the wake of Glasgow NE.

This will provide Brown Central with a very welcome tonic as we move into the final five months before the election campaign has to start. Movement is movement and this might just impede any last minute effort to find a different leader.

It doesn’t take much change from this and we are in hung parliament territory.

The other distinctive feature about the poll is the relatively low share for “others” – down at just 10 percent which is only 2 points above what happened at the 2005 general election.

Amongst the non-voting finding there was one which might cause Brown Central some concern. As Julian Glover writes: “Tellingly, voters are less afraid overall of a Conservative win than a Labour one. Asked to pick from a range of emotions they might feel when they wake up to hear the election result next year, 53% would be angry or disappointed at news of a Labour win. Only 36% would feel the same about a Tory victory.”

My guess is that the other poll that is expected within the next 24 hours – the MORI monitor – will also see a boost for Brown’s party. If that does indeed happen then we could see changes on the commons seat spread betting markets.

Mike Smithson

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