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16 September 2010

Clegg now more popular with Tory voters than with Lib Dems

New poll shows net approval of 66 per cent from Tories but just 46 per cent from Lib Dems.

By George Eaton

If Nick Clegg was hoping to avoid claims that he’s swerved to the right, the latest Ipsos MORI poll won’t do him any favours. The survey shows that the Lib Dem leader is now more popular with Conservative supporters (net score +66) than supporters of his own party (net score +46).

Clearly Clegg’s U-turn on spending cuts (remember, Greece changed “everything”) delighted those previously put off by such radical ideas as delaying cuts until the economy had recovered fully.

The Lib Dem leader is also getting better write-ups in the right-wing press. Earlier today, the Spectator editor, Fraser Nelson, tweeted:

Powerful piece by Nick Clegg in Times today on welfare reform. Shows political courage and sense of mission. More impressive by the week.

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Can you remember the last time a liberal commentator said anything that nice about Clegg?

Meanwhile, the topline figures from the poll show Labour and the Tories neck and neck on 37 per cent (the first time MORI has shown the two parties level since January 2008), with the Lib Dems on 15 per cent.

The YouGov daily tracker has the Tories up 2 to 42 per cent, Labour unchanged on 39 per cent and the Lib Dems unchanged on 12 per cent.