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Poll Digest - Political - ComRes Battlebus: The Independent Marginal Seats Political Poll

 LABOUR NARROWLY AHEAD IN KEY MARGINAL SEATS 

In the first in the series of ComRes / Independent Battlebus polls of the 40 most marginal Labour-Conservative constituencies, Labour holds a narrow two point lead over the Conservatives as UKIP’s rise sees both parties share of the vote fall from the General Election.

35% of people in these battleground constituencies would vote Labour if there were a General Election tomorrow, compared to 33% who would vote for the Conservatives. However, both parties see their vote share fall since the last General Election – in a large part due to the rise of UKIP who move from 3% of the vote in 2010 to 17% now. The Liberal Democrats have fallen 10 points since the last General Election to 8%.

Con      33% (-4)

Lab       35% (-2)

LD        8% (-10)

UKIP     17% (+14%)

Other    7% (+2)

 Figures in brackets show changes since the 2010 General Election results across the constituencies

Despite Labour leading across the 40 marginal constituencies as a whole, both main parties are ahead in the seats where they are currently incumbent. In current Tory seats, they lead Labour 35% to 33%, while in current Labour seats, Ed Miliband’s party leads 39% to the Conservatives’ 31%.

Tom Mludzinski, Head of Political Polling at ComRes said: “This is the battleground where next year’s General Election will be won and lost and as our new poll shows, the race is incredibly tight, with both parties suffering at the hands of UKIP. What will worry Labour most is that they have not yet managed to claw ahead of the Conservatives in their target seats. These constituencies will be the ones to watch as we turn the corner away from the European elections and towards May 2015.”

 

Election Issues

·         The most important issue voters in battleground seats say will influence who they vote for is keeping down the cost of everyday items, such as food, energy and travel. Nearly half of those in battleground seats (47%) say this is one of the top three issues in deciding who to vote for.

·         Controlling immigration (44%) and managing the NHS (42%) make up the top three priorities. Promoting economic growth comes in as the fourth most important issue for voters in battleground seats, while of the ten issues tested, reducing the Government’s budget deficit, and improving the education system are considered the least important (16% each).

·         Labour leads on the top issue of keeping down the cost of everyday items (28%) as well as managing the NHS (29%).

·         UKIP lead the three main parties when it comes to controlling immigration (37%).

·         It will worry the Conservatives that they lead on none of three issues most important in the battlegrounds. However, they are most trusted when it comes to promoting economic growth (34%), reducing crime and anti-social behaviour (28%) and reducing the Government’s budget deficit (37%).

·         Voters in battleground seats are divided over which of the two main parties are most trusted on improving the education system (Lab: 25%, Con: 24%) and making the welfare system fairer (Lab: 25%, Con: 24%).

Q: Below is a list of priorities for a potential Government to have, please select the three which you would consider most important when deciding who to vote for at a General Election.

Rank

Issue

% selecting it as a top 3 priority in deciding who they will vote for

Party most trusted on the issue

1

Keeping down the cost of everyday items, such as food, energy and travel

47%

Lab

2

Controlling immigration

44%

UKIP

3

Managing the NHS

42%

Lab

4

Promoting economic growth

26%

Con

5

Making the welfare system fairer

25%

Lab / Con

6

Redefining Britain’s relationship with the EU

23%

UKIP / Con

7

Reducing crime and anti-social behaviour

23%

Con

8

Improving housing affordability

21%

Lab

9

Improving the education system

16%

Lab / Con

10

Reducing the Government’s budget deficit

16%

Con

 Methodology Note:

ComRes interviewed a representative sample of 1,030 GB adults living in the 40 most marginal constituencies where the Conservatives and Labour shared first and second place between them at the last General Election in 2010. Of these 40 constituencies, 25 currently have a Conservative MP and 15 currently have a Labour MP. Each constituency is represented in the sample equally, with results weighted to be representative of all adults in all 40 constituencies as a whole. Data were also weighted by past vote recall. ComRes is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules.