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Consolation for Theresa – in spite of the Tory turmoil LAB isn’t pulling away

October 24th, 2017

We get so few voting polls these days that any new one is something of an event and today we had ICM for the Guardian which once again has the two main parties level pegging.

Looking at the Wikipedia polling table above the big message is that the Tories have less to fear than might, at first, you would expect. Sure Labour is ahead in many of the polls but the picture is far from clear cut and it is not obvious that if there was a general election tomorrow that the Tories would be defeated.

For whatever reason Labour has found it enormously difficult to widen the gap following what was a very considerable boost in the general election when they massively beat expectations.

What is odd is that the voting numbers are not following the leader ratings where Jeremy Corbyn has been enjoying a pretty good run of polls. He is ahead of Theresa May whatever the question whether it be leader satisfaction, favourability, or good job bad job.

Last month Labour had the best September conference which had the feel almost of a victory rally even though the seat total achieved on June 8th was just four more than that which Gordon Brown got in 2010.

Labour’s policies, particularly on nationalisation, appear to be well supported according to the surveys yet this doesn’t seem to be reflected in the voting numbers.

Maybe we simply have to accept that Brexit means that these are times for which there is no precedent and we have to adjust our expectations accordingly.

Mike Smithson