New poll: Voters credit low-earner tax-cuts to Lib Dems, Clegg’s ratings spike following Farage debate challenge

by Stephen Tall on March 13, 2014

Here’s a poll finding that will relieve Lib Dems and worry Tories – according to Ipsos-Mori more voters (45%) credit the Lib Dems with the Coalition’s tax-cuts than credit the Tories (33%):

tax cuts lib dme credit ipsos mori

evening standard tax cutsThe findings are in line with some of the Lib Dems’ own private polling I’ve seen.

While it might seem self-evident to Lib Dems that the party should get the credit – it was the top demand in the party’s 2010 manifesto – the Tories have been trying hard to associate themselves with raising the tax threshold, taking two million of the lowest paid out of income tax altogether.

As I always do on these occasions, it’s worth recalling what the Tory tax pledges were in 2010:

  • reverse Labour’s proposed increase in National Insurance contributions (what the Tories termed the ‘jobs tax’);
  • raise the inheritance tax threshold to £1m;
  • freeze council tax for two years;
  • tax breaks for married couples;
  • reduce corporation tax.
  • No mention at all of the personal allowance.

    And here’s what David Cameron had to say about the policy in 2010:

    But for all this “it’s obvious, isn’t it” fact-mongering, there’s always been the risk the Tory propaganda machine could win out – and that one-third of voters do credit the Tories shows it’s had some impact. But, overall, it’s the Tories who’ll have more cause to fret than the Lib Dems.

    Here are a couple of other interesting findings from Ipsos-Mori’s polling…

    First, none of the leaders are very popular. David Cameron has the highest favourability, but Nick Clegg, Ed Milband and Nigel Farage all poll roughly the same (though Clegg’s higher dissatisfaction pulls down his net rating):

    ipsos mori leader satisfaction ratings march 2014

    Better news for Nick Clegg on his satisfaction ratings among the 13% of Lib Dem voters Ipsos-Mori found – his net satisfaction rating of +32% is up massively on the previous month, when it was just +1%. That suggests Clegg’s decision to take the fight to Nigel Farage has achieved at least one of the objectives it was designed to do: galvanise Lib Dem supporters.

    ipsos mori clegg satisfaction ratings march 2014

    * Stephen Tall is Co-Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice, and editor of the 2013 publication, The Coalition and Beyond: Liberal Reforms for the Decade Ahead. He is also a Research Associate for the liberal think-tank CentreForum and writes at his own site, The Collected Stephen Tall.