Is Clegg on his way out? Another poll shows him trailing to Labour in Sheffield Hallam

1st April, 2015 12:40 pm

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Yet more constituency research shows that there is a very real chance that Nick Clegg could lose his seat to Labour in May. Lord Ashcroft’s latest batch of Lib Dem marginals polling shows that Labour’s Oliver Coppard currently holds a two point lead over the Deputy PM.

This follows a previous Ashcroft poll in the seat, which gave Labour a lead of three, and an earthquake poll from Survation last month which saw Labour 10 whole points ahead.

The latest poll gives these figures for the constituency voting intention:

Labour 36%, Lib Dems 34%, Tories 16%, UKIP 7%, Green Party 6%

In such a close race, it could come down to supporters of other parties deciding to vote for one of the two frontrunners.

Among the Green Party’s support, only 28% would definitely not vote Labour, while 44% would definitely not vote Lib Dem, suggesting that there is some scope for Labour squeezing the Green vote to the Lib Dems’ disadvantage.

However, among Conservative voters the trend is reversed: 49% would not consider voting Lib Dem, and 76% would not consider voting Labour. If the Lib Dems, who have a contact rate of 76%, are able to target their messaging to Tory supporters, Labour could face an uphill struggle.

The only other Lib Dem/Labour marginals polled by Ashcroft in this series is Cambridge, where Labour have a national lead of five but the Lib Dems have a local lead of nine. This suggests that Julian Huppert could hold his place in the Commons comfortably.

All of the other six seats polled are Tory/Lib Dem marginals. Three see Lib Dem leads in constituencies where they already have an MP (Torbay, St Ives and North Cornwall), while two see Tory leads in Lib Dem areas (North Devon and St Austell & Newquay).

In Camborne & Redruth in 2010, the Conservatives had a majority of just 66 over the Lib Dems. The last Ashcroft poll gave the Tories a lead of just three over UKIP, and today’s poll suggests Labour are now comfortably in second place, although 13 points off the Tories.

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