The latest Guardian / ICM poll for July 2013 shows a substantive move back to the Conservatives, wiping out a 7-point lead for Labour last month. The main two parties stand on 36% apiece, with Labour unmoved as the Tories climbed +7 to their best showing since March 2012.
The Tory gains pretty much translate into UKIP losses. As the gleam of their local council election showing rubs off, UKIP suffer as they return to the political shadows with a 5-point fall this month on top of a 6-point fall in the previous month. Nigel Farage’s hope must be that he can somehow persuade the electorate that UKIP is more than just an opportunity to send a message to the main parties in second order elections; but as some minor parties of the past can attest, being seen as a legitimate and strong alternative in General Election’s is a different ball game to breakthroughs at council or European level.
The actual vote shares for publication are:
Con 36% (+7)
Lab 36% (nc)
LD 13% (+1)
UKIP 7% (-5)
Oth 8% (-2)
George Osborne may be less happy than his boss. Two in three (65%) don’t believe that the deficit can be cut without adding in tax rises to the mix. There is a majority on this across the board, with 57% of Con 2010 voters agreeing (2010 Lab: 70%, 2010 LD: 75%). This may well be a difficult idea to fix the Tory manifesto on, but then we should also consider that few people believe the promises like these that come out of politicians mouths.
The public is entirely split on Trident. Three in ten (31%) think it should be replaced (rising to 45% of 2010 Tories), while an identical number (31%) think it should be slimmed down (rising to 37% among 2010 LDs which does suggest that their policy is somewhat in line with their supports’ expectations), and 30% think we should no longer have any nuclear deterrent (39% among Labour 2010 voters). On this matter, it is hard to think any government could win irrespective of the decision they arrive at.
Senior Tories are right to suggest that the IPS ‘sticks’ its suggested pay rise for MPs. The public believe that MPs should be paid a shade over £50k (£51,620 on average). Men (£54k are happier to pay them more than women (£49k) and there is a clear correlation between social grade and pay. For example, the most affluent AB group suggest MPs should get £58k, C1s suggest £55k, C2s £46k and DEs £45k. LD voters are the most generous (£61k) as are people living in the South (£54k).
ICM Research interviewed a random sample of 1,003 adults aged 18+ by telephone on 12-14 July 2013. Interviews were conducted across the country and the results have been weighted to the profile of all adults. ICM is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules.