There was an ICM voting intention poll released on June 16th. Not many people noticed it; the polling companies aren’t shouting from the rooftops about their work at the moment, for obvious reasons. Mostly, they keep doing them so that there aren’t historical gaps in polling data (thus ensuring that graphing trends over time is possible into the future). However, the June 16th one was interesting when you dug into the crosstabs and got to the meat of the data.
Top line is that the Tories are on 37% and Labour on 31% – a 6 point lead. No real surprise there. UKIP are on 13% and the Lib Dems on 8%. So essentially, the whole thing is roughly in line with how people voted in the general election – again, not surprising. Which is why when you look at some of the deeper info contained within, the poll throws up some scary stuff for Labour.
Amongst C1s, or the lower middle class, the Tories have a 12 point lead over Labour (40 v 28%). That’s bad, but not the end of the world. You could look at any number of historical reasons for why the lower middle classes might vote Tory, particularly in a climate such as the one we are faced with. But when you look at C2s, the skilled working classes, The Tories still lead by eight (35 v 27%). In fact, UKIP are biting at Labour’s heels amongst this socio-economic group, just five points behind on 22%. That is very bad for Labour.
Labour is only ahead of the Conservatives amongst one socio-economic subset, that being Ds and Es (taken together in the poll), which are the non-skilled working class and the non-working class. Even here, it’s Labour 34 to the Tories 28 (UKIP on 15), a paltry six point lead.
Basically what I’m saying is that we heard a lot pre-election about how people regard the Tories as only out for the rich and powerful, and that people outside of the A and B classes felt alienated by them. Yet here we are, and the Conservative Party has a commanding poll lead amongst this group of people. Go figure.
However, all that isn’t even the real problem for Labour: it is that their support is now socio-economically bow shaped. They do all right amongst the richest actually (33% of A and Bs support them, slightly higher than their national rating) and amongst the poorest, but in the middle they are getting beaten by the Tories badly, with UKIP, as I say, coming up from behind. Given these are the people who should be their base, that should be very worrying for Labour.
I can hear people with their defensive comments on what I’ve just said already. It’s one poll. Besides, the pollsters don’t know what they’re talking about anyways, right? If there are people out there who wish to take solace in these excuses, by all means. I understand. But I can see the reality behind these numbers and so should those in the higher echelons of the Labour Party.
Mick Taylor says
I may be a pedant but I do wish you would learn the difference between there (over there) their ( belonging to them) and they’re (they are). I’m sure it was taught at school
Mick: if you would be so kind as to point out the specific uses of the above words that are not grammatically correct in the article above – having re-read it, thinking there was a typo somewhere, I can’t see an incorrect use of there, their or they’re anywhere in the body of the text.
Donald Cameron says
Nick you are quite correct with your use of there.
“the pollsters don’t know what their talking about”
Thank you, Adam. For whatever reason, I was just blind to that typo. Couldn’t see it somehow. Anyhow, amended now.
Keep in mind the margin of error! With those subsamples you’re looking at +-6-7% so I’d take this with a massive pinch of salt. The results don’t surprise me and I could easily believe them, but I don’t think this is a good way to show them.
Donald Cameron says
Unfortunately the big money is with the Tory Party who do indeed favour the rich and powerful. They also have their Tory favouring media of the press, who constantly malign and lie about members of the Labour and Liberal Democrat parties, that press is read by social classes A, B, C1 and C2 who believe their propaganda. Labour and the Lib Dems suffer severely from lack of media support. The Tories may be in power until they mess up again as they did in 1960 – 64 and 1990 – 97. I am not surprised at the relative Left Wing support in A and B because that is where the non-aristocratic intelligent are found.