Today’s YouGov poll for The Daily Telegraph gives the Conservative Party a 2% lead over Labour – confirming YouGov’s weekend poll for The Sunday Times. A 5% gain for the Conservatives since May’s General Election has entirely been at the Liberal Democrats’ expense.
The YouGov poll finds more bad news for Charles Kennedy. Only 11% now think that he would make the best Prime Minister. That’s down from 18% in May. Mr Cameron is level-pegging with Mr Blair. Each has the support of 30% of voters as the best PM.
Charles Kennedy received some support from Ming Campbell on this morning’s Today programme. Mr Kennedy’s Deputy said that the Liberal Democrats were at their best when Mr Kennedy was in full flight. He did imply that Mr Kennedy had not been firing on many cylinders recently, however. Sir Ming said that he would certainly consider standing for the LibDem leadership if a vacancy emerged. LibDem Home Affairs spokesman Mark Oaten used an interview in The Telegraph to say that he wanted to be leader but that he would not challenge Mr Kennedy.
Mr Cameron will speak in Hereford later today. He will invite Liberal Democrats to join his modern compassionate Conservative Party and its new emphasis on social justice and environmentalism. ConservativeHome will digest the speech later.
The Telegraph’s YouGov poll shows that Mr Cameron’s honeymoon is much more modest than that enjoyed by Tony Blair in 1994. Mr Blair enjoyed a 70% over 10% advantage on “caring”, for example. Mr Cameron’s advantage is only 32% over 12% because of a much greater number of ‘don’t knows’. Mr Blair was regarded as decisive by a margin of 60% over 15%. Mr Cameron’s advantage is only 36% over 10%. Unlike previous Tory leaders, however, Mr Cameron’s ratings are consistently positive.