Sunday, 14 December 2008

Polls and the changing political scene

. A glut of polls was expected this weekend as pollsters moved their activities forward to account for the Christmas break. Two more today with ComRes showing no change on it's 1% Conservative lead and YouGov showing a slightly increased 6% Tory advantage.

It seems that the Conservatives, by wrongly focusing on the Damian Green affair, have frittered away their commanding advantage. We are defiantly out of the territory where a Cameron victory seemed like an inevitability and the only question was how big would the landslide be; Liberal Democrat support meanwhile remains pretty static.

We are caught between somewhere between the devil and the deep blue sea. On the one hand we are going to struggle to attract our target Labour vote; as the Conservatives look more menacing it's traditional supporters will huddle round Labour for warmth. Obviously, Conservative support is rising with people who previously abandoned it feeling confident enough to return.

Brown's best shot of winning an election is to go to the polls in early 2009. If he tries to continue on until 2010 he runs the clear risk that the Conservatives will be able to build-up momentum again and we will be straight back to landslide territory. ComRes asked a variety of questions which indicated that he doesn't have people convinced but all the evidence suggests that neither do the Conservatives. So, while 52% are convinced that Brown's package isn't working this is not reflected in increased headline support for Cameron.

Two possibilities exist for us; we will be squeezed which has always been the danger of this situation. The other is that if we can be aggressive in pitching a new kind of politics then we can start making much needed headway...

No comments: