With only ten days left before the election, the Tories fractionally increase their slim lead over Labour, up 1-point this week to 3-points. Their share is 35%, with Labour on 32%. The Liberal Democrats (9%) shed 1-point this week to leave them perilously close to their floor in the ICM\Guardian series, but UKIP continue to rise – now up to 13% – their highest with ICM since December last year.
The vote intention figures for publication are:
Con 35% (+1)
Lab 32% (nc)
LD 9% (-1)
UKIP 13% (+2)
Green 5% (nc)
Other 6% (-2)
Politicians approval ratings suggest little change from a fortnight ago, although the Prime Minister drops from +18 to +12. Ed Miliband has seen his scores improve of late, but this poll suggests stasis for the opposition leader, now on -29 compared to -30 earlier in the month. Nick Clegg may not have been seen much on the campaign trail, but his approval rating has also stabilised at -19 (considerably better the -42 we saw in October last year).
In other questions, we found that, much like the shares of the vote, the public find it tricky to decide between the two main party’s central policy themes, with 40% saying the Tories are more extreme for their budget deficit cutting proposals, and 43% saying Labour are more extreme because of their higher borrowing potential.
In terms of the political outcome of this election though, there is more certainty. Nearly half (47%) think that a coalition government is preferable to both a minority government (24%) and an early second election (22%).
Much has been made of negative campaigning of late, particularly around the Tories focus on Ed Miliband, and the public do perceive that the Tories’ campaign has been slightly more negative than their opponents. Overall, 44% think the Tories have campaigned positively with 45% saying they have been negative, but Labour have 48% on their side suggesting that on balance they have campaigned positively (40% negative).
ICM Unlimited interviewed a randonm sample of 1,004 adults aged 18+ by telephone on 24-26th April 2015. Interviews were conducted across the countryand 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.