Do the Conservatives have an 11-point lead?

The Conservatives aren't 11 points ahead of Labour. And, to be frank, if they were, that's the least of Labour's problems.

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The first post-election YouGov poll shows the Conservatives in a commanding lead, with 41 per cent of the vote to Labour's 30 per cent, putting them on course for an even bigger majority than the one they have now. As you would expect, Twitter is reacting to it with its usual equanimity. Are the Conservatives on course to rule for 100 years? Should Andy Burnham, Liz Kendall, Yvette Cooper and Mary Creagh pack up and go home?

The short answer to all these questions is "No".  The pollsters will now be adjusting to the results of the last election, so expect to see these crushing leads for the Tories quite regularly. Labour has a mountain to climb if it is to take back power - but we knew that anyway. To be honest, a few bad polls are the least of Labour's worries. Here's something more worrying: after boundary reform, if Labour were to get 41 per cent of the vote, and the Conservatives just 30 per cent...Labour still wouldn't be in office with a majority.

And should be far more distressing for the party than one or two bad polls. 


Stephen Bush is political editor of the New Statesman. His daily briefing, Morning Call, provides a quick and essential guide to domestic and global politics. He also co-hosts the New Statesman podcast.

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