By Matthew Barrett
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In a poll for the Independent carried out by ComRes, Labour are given a 10% lead. Voters put Labour at 43%, the Conservatives at 33%, and the Lib Dems at 11%. These latest figures show Labour up three points since last month, and the Tories down four points. This is the biggest lead for Labour in a ComRes poll since the election, and indeed since March 2005.
An interesting note from the poll, which will indicate the extent of the damage to Tory support caused by the Peter Cruddas/Downing Street access affair, is that the interviews ComRes conducted on Saturday, before the Sunday Times broke the story, show a Labour lead of only four percent, but in the similar number of interviews that took place on Sunday and today after the news broke, Labour was 17% ahead, on 47%, with the Tories on 30%. It's worth noting, however, that while ComRes give Labour a 10% lead, Populus for the Times only gives Labour a 4% lead.
ComRes also asked what percentage of people agreed with the statement that “the measures announced in the Budget show that the Conservatives are the party of the rich”. 66% of voters agreed with this, and only 27% disagreed. Clearly being seen as the "party of the rich" is a vulnerability, but what voters ultimately want is economic strength. YouGov for the Sunday Times showed 60% of voters want economic strength rather than economic "fairness" (32%). On that measure, the Tories are ahead, being seen as the party of economic strength by 31% of voters, while Labour are only seen as strong by 24% of voters. However, Labour are seen as the party of economic "fairness" by 29%, with the Tories on 21%.