The dire polling numbers will cause jitters in Stoke and Copeland
Just days before the key by-elections in Stoke and Copeland, a new ICM/Guardian poll puts the Conservatives 18-points ahead of Labour nationwide.
Although a lead of this size is not unprecedented, ICM has only recorded three larger leads in its 34-year history, two of which were in 1983 — immediately before Margaret Thatcher flattened Michael Foot.
In the current term, one other poll — published by Ipsos MORI last October — has given the Tories an 18-point lead.
Moreover, Labour is ‘within touching distance of its floor’. In ICM/Guardian polls, the party has only dropped to 25 per cent twice, in 2008 and 2009 when Gordon Brown was battling the worst of the financial crisis.
Here are the full figures:
Con 44% (+2)
Lab 26% (-1)
UKIP 13% (+1)
Lib Dem 8% (-2)
Green 4% (nc)
SNP 4% (-1)
PC *% (-1)
Other 1% (+1)
In the same poll, 42 per cent of respondents said that the rights of EU citizens in the UK should not be guaranteed until EU states make a reciprocal commitment to their British residents.
However, almost as many (41 per cent) responded that guaranteeing their residency is the right thing to do, and could benefit the UK in negotiations.
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