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Mori poll gives boost to Tories and Lib Dems

January 31st, 2006

    Cameron gets approval rating of nearly 2-1

The results are out of a massive poll involving face to face interviews with more than 2,000 people by MORI. The main party shares based on those “certain to vote” are CON 40% (+1): LAB 38%(-1): LD 17%(+2). The comparisons are with the Sun Mori poll eleven days ago.

Asked how they saw David Cameron’s performance as Tory leader 31% were positive and 17% against. In an excellent commentary on the MORI site the pollster compares Cameron’s position at this stage with the last three Tory leaders and Tony Blair in September 1994.

The commentary notes: “David Cameron is currently perceived more favourably than any of his three immediate predecessors two months or so after each had been elected leader. However, the key figure to watch over the next few months is the “don’t knows” — will more of the public become satisfied with David Cameron’s performance as they begin to make up their minds, or will they be turned off — as has happened with every Conservative leader since 1997 as shown below?” Noting that Cameron’s 14% plus rating is the same as Blair’s at the same stage of his leadership MORI goes on: ” Here we see almost identical satisfaction ratings from the public. And in contrast to Conservative leaders post-1997, Tony Blair’s approval ratings rose as the public got to know him and he regularly recorded satisfaction ratings in the high 40s and low 50s in the three years running up to the 1997 General Election.”

On the main poll findings the Tories will be pleased to be back at 40% and the Lib Dems will feel much more comfortable at 17%. But the interviews took place from 19-23 January so would not have included the Simon Hughes news and only a part of the survey covered the period after Mark Oaten’s departure from the Lib Dem race.

Mori do not weight by past vote recall and their top-line figures are restricted to “those certain to vote”. If MORI had included the “less certains” then Labour would have had a 7 point lead. Unlike some previous MORI surveys this was not a phone poll. I am much happier with MORI’s approach with face-to-face surveys than with phone polls.


Mike Smithson






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