Recent polls, and what they are saying (if they can be believed)

Those of us who voraciously devour opinion polls were somewhat shocked and disappointed by just how wrong they were on May 7th. Whilst we all accept that polling was not foolproof, we can become used to the idea that they are pretty accurate, certainly when you take an average across the various polls.

It will be recalled that in the run-in to May 7th it was agreed by every pollster that we were in hung Parliament territory, that the Tories were probably going to have a few more MPs than Labour, but that Labour was likely to be able to attract more friendly faces from other parties and therefore form a minority administration. I certainly recall debates with colleagues as to the timing of the next General Election, with either autumn 2015 or spring 2016 as the likeliest of dates. How wrong we all were.

There has been polling since, but what confidence can we have in it? I cannot answer that, except to say that in the absence of anything better then what we have is what we have to go on.

So, bearing in mind that your own prejudices can have free reign when deciding to accept or reject these numbers, here is a summary of recent polls.

Lab Con LDem UKIP Grn
31 July 2015 ComRes 28 40 7 10 5
24 July 2015 Ipsos MORI 31 37 10 9
13 July 2015 ICM 34 38 6 13 4
18 June 2015 Ipsos MORI 30 39 9 8 6
15 June 2015 ICM 31 37 8 13 5
04 June 2015 ComRes 29 41 8 10 5
Average 30 39 9 10 5
GE result 30.5 36.8 7.9 12.7 3.8

What do these tell us? Within the accepted margin of error it can plausibly be argued that there has been no change since May 7th, which I find surprising.

I have found, in the few doorstep conversations I am having, that support for the Conservatives has firmed up. I also suspect that our leadership contest whilst igniting debate and making for many column inches, is portraying us as divided and flirting with a lurch leftwards. That none of this has affected polling is extraordinary.

If the averages are accurate (yes, a big IF), then we are seeing Tory support moving up a little, as are the Liberal Democrats and the Greens. Losing out are Labour and UKIP.

3 Responses to Recent polls, and what they are saying (if they can be believed)

  1. I think it is useful to separate the various polling organisations and then graph the results.

  2. Can’t paste a graph or use IMG tab – so trying a link!

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