In a massive poll of more than 5,000 people for the Daily Telegraph YouGov are reporting a slight shift back to Labour compared with the “quickie” survey that was carried out for Sky News in the aftermath of the General Election announcement.
The headline figures are LAB 36: CON 35: LD 21. The poll was carried out on the 5th and 6th of April and is almost identical to the YouGov poll carried out for Sky News on the 5th April – the only difference is that Tory support is one point lower.
Given the size of the sample – YouGov surveys for the Telegraph usually have about 2,000 respondents – this latest poll should be more accurate.
What might be worrying for Labour strategists is that 35 per cent said the the issue that was “most in their minds” was that “Tony Blair and many of his ministers cannot be trusted: they have constantly lied to the public and broken their promises”.
According to the Martin Baxter calculation based on applying these shares on a uniform swing since the last election this is what the poll means in terms of seats LAB 353: CON 208: LD 55 – a Labour majority of 60 which is not too far off Politicalbetting’s latest “Balance of Money” prediction of a 51 seat majority.
Another way of projecting the number of seats is to take the swing, adjusted for Scottish boundary changes, from the 1997 General Election result. The Hill&Knowlton calculator produces LAB 325: CON 230: LD 62 – a Labour majority of 4.
We think that on May 5th the final seat distribution will be between the Baxter & Hill&Knowlton projections because of extraordinary way four years ago that Labour held onto its seats even though its vote lead was cut by a quarter. We cannot assume that the same factors will apply this time.
Whichever calculator you use Labour gets many many more seats for its vote share than the Tories or the Lib Dems – an issue that we believe will dominate the post-election environment, particularly if the Tories come top on votes.
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