Saturday, 2 July 2011

The swing to Labour and the margin of error

It does shame me somewhat that I have so little to say on politics at present, which is why I've not said it. Recently I felt my sense of malaise and stagnation on burning issues of the day was expressed to some extent by this PoliticsHome/YouGov poll on the NHS that found 'while voters largely support reforms in principle, they don’t trust the Conservatives to deliver them in practice.' Which leaves us where exactly? Meanwhile, flinching and flip-flopping seems to have become the Cameron Way, and if he thinks that's the way by which he'll win an outright majority in 2015 then he's a braver man than I thought. The creeping lack of assurance, the tendency to panic would be more dangerous for Cameron in the short term, I'm sure, were it not for the peculiar character of the Leader of the Opposition.
Ed Miliband has quite clearly had a result or two at PMQs lately, and Labour's poll lead looks to me to be six points more often than not. This ought to have the look of a strong position: not least since there is no realistic chance of Ed being ousted from the post, no real money in the Labour current account that hasn't come by way of Ed's avowed admirers in the Movement, and no form in the Labour Party for ditching leaders other than those who have won three general elections. And yet... are Labour behind this leader? Are Labour voters actively keen on him? Are undecided voters persuaded by him? I only ask these questions at this time of night because there's no need to answer them.
The delightful photo above I have borrowed from this Jim Pickard piece in the FT.

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