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10 October 2016

Theresa May’s “just managing“ strategy is paying off handsomely in the polls

The Tories are winning over Ukip and C2 voters. 

By Julia Rampen

The Conservatives are leading Labour by 17 points after the party conferences, according to a Guardian/ICM poll published on Monday. 

In early October, 43 per cent of voters planned to back the Tories if an election was held tomorrow. This is up from 41 per cent in late August

It’s the highest polling for the Tories since 2008

Blue Ukip

The Prime Minister Theresa May’s promise to be tough on immigration appears to be resonating with Ukip voters – 18 per cent of Ukip voters in the 2015 election would now vote Tory, compared to 12 per cent of those surveyed in August. 

However, May has also benefited from a nightmare week for Ukip, in which Diane James, the new leader, quit, and two MEPs ended up in a brawl. 

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Classless Conservatives 

The Conservatives enjoyed more support among all social classes, with more than half of the wealthiest AB class voters now planning to vote for them and 37 per cent of the poorest voters, up from 20 per cent in August.  

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May’s relentless focus on the “just managings” appears to be paying off – the proportion of C2 voters backing the Tories has doubled to 44 per cent. 

Lacklustre Labour

Jeremy Corbyn’s re-election appears not to have had the same effect for Labour –  support for the party dipped slightly, to 26 per cent.

Support for the Greens and the Liberal Democrats edged upwards, with the Liberal Democrats backed by 8 per cent of voters. 

Nevertheless, Labour’s losses disguise a couple of quiet gains. 

Labour may be losing out to the Lib Dems in some areas, but it is wooing them in others – the proportion of 2015 Lib Dem voters now willing to back Labour has risen from 9 per cent in August to 14 per cent in October.

There also appears to be a surge of support in Wales, with 38 per cent voters now backing Labour, compared to just 26 per cent in August.