12 March 2010

The polls: It’s the message, stupid

Today’s YouGov poll has the Tory lead narrowing to just 3%, while Angus Reed indicates a 13% lead.  The latter bucks the recent trend.  The clever people will work out what is going on.

Meanwhile, down in The Voters’ Arms, Labour simple message may be sinking in, as James Kirkup explains:

After Gordon Brown’s appearance at Reuters’ Canary Wharf base on Thursday, I spoke to a City type who also attended a similar event last week with George Osborne, David Cameron and Kenneth Clarke. For all the undoubted anxieties in the City about Labour’s (lack of) fiscal plans and all the doubts about Mr Brown’s own agenda, my financial friend was clear about which presentation he found more credible.

“Whatever you think of it, Brown looks like he’s offering a clear message. I can’t say that for the Conservatives,” he said. It was not an unusual view in such company.

It all comes back to the old chestnut of Cameron failing to have a strategy and a “sharp and simple” message that he can sell.  Despite Brown’s unpopularity, that is why the polls are narrowing.

To quote Alastair Campbell’s often repeated phrase: ‘The Tories haven't done the heavy lifting on policy needed to turn an opposition party into one of power’.

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