ICM were the most accurate pollsters in 2010.
This could shift the narrative this week…
This is the leaflet being delivered by the LibDems to key target seats this morning. Nationwide…
Last year Guido reported on the concern of close Clegg family friends, who were worried the Deputy Prime Minister was ‘in a really bad place’. Despite Cleggy claiming he is far chirpier than his demeanor let on, today’s Survation poll of his Sheffield seat makes for grim reading:
LAB 33% (+17), LD 23% (-30), CON 22% (-2)
Even though this union funded poll is not weighted to take into account previous voting intentions, that ten point Labour lead will be eye-watering for Lib Dem strategists.
Nationally the Tories lead by a point:
And the LibDems a point behind the Greens…
Senior LibDem Don Foster, MP for Bath for the past 23 years, clearly thinks he can do the job in his sleep. The chain-smoking chief whip has been struggling to stay awake even during Cabinet meetings. As revealed in yesterday’s Sun, Tory ministers have been unable to hide their giggles as the 67-year-old dozes off, out of sight from his leader Nick Clegg but in full view of the Prime Minister. Gambling coalition cabinet colleagues have opened a book, taking bets on how long into the Tuesday morning meeting the old dear’s eyelids will start to droop. Sounds like a dream job.
LibDem MP Annette Brooke’s cat named Billy has won the esteemed Battersea Dogs & Cats Home Cat of the Year prize, clawing 23% of the vote:
“I’m really thrilled that Billy has won, as I’m sure he will be, and he will be getting lots of extra treats! It has been a pleasure to be involved in this opportunity to promote rescue centres such as Battersea Dogs & Cats Home, who do such good work. We acquired Billy from a rescue centre in Dorset last July, and were so impressed with them. My family stay in touch, letting them know how Billy is getting on, and I would really encourage anyone looking for a new pet to rehome from a rescue.”
Larry was unavailable for comment.
It is 100 days until the election and the LibDems are marking the occasion by releasing this new poster, which they helpfully explain is “deliberately playing on a previous Conservative poster”. See what they did there…
All well and good, but is it a German road?
The gloves are coming off between the Tories and the LibDems in the dying days of their coalition. Downgraded Business Secretary Vince Cable has been allowed to appoint a new taxpayer funded adviser – his third – despite there being only 2 months left before the government is dissolved. This infuriates the Tories, and they have let rip: “We all know the LibDems are on the brink of bankruptcy”, says Tory MP Julian Smith; “this is a naked attempt by the them to plunder the public finances to bankroll their faltering election campaign.” Victoria Pine, a former lobbyist, will be paid by the taxpayer until the end of March, during which time there will be almost zero government activity. Cable’s other two spin doctors are paid £60,000 each, though Pine’s salary remains a mystery. “You can’t trust a word the Lib Dems say,’ claims Labour’s Sheila Gilmore. “They used to say Special Advisers shouldn’t be paid for by the taxpayer but in Government this has become just another broken promise. Taxpayers will rightly be asking why, at a time when this Zombie Government is barely staggering along, the Libs think it’s appropriate to add more and more advisers to the payroll.” A spokesman for Vince Cable tells Guido lamely: ‘There are already 3 Tory special advisers in BIS and so, as approved by David Cameron, we have brought the number of LibDem spads in BIS up to parity’.
Nick Clegg has also pulled a similar stunt. The Deputy Prime Minister has two dozen taxpayer-funded Special Advisors, and has added another to the list just in time for the election. Ruwan Kodikara has joined Clegg’s team as the his spin-tastic “Head of Media & Brand”. It would be a tough job for anyone to turn around the Lib Dems’ toxic image in just 107 days, but Kodikara has years of experience spinning for the bad guys. Having been a lobbyist for big energy, bad banks, private healthcare and nuclear energy, is he ready for his toughest job yet? Presumably Clegg’s promise to clamp down on lobbying and create a “cleaner, better politics” has gone the same way of his pledge not to raise tuition fees…
Read the latest Ward comments causing controversy here.
UPDATE II: A LibDem spokesperson says:
“David Ward does not speak for the Liberal Democrats on this issue. He has well known and strongly held views on this issue but this tweet was clearly in bad taste.”
As the #JeSuisJuif (#IAmJewish) hashtag trends in memory of the victims of the Kosher supermarket murders, reinstated LibDem MP David Ward tweets: