Labour Poll Lead Grows Even After Tory Policy Blitz, YouGov Says

(Bloomberg) -- Keir Starmer’s opposition Labour Party extended its poll lead over the Conservatives even as Rishi Sunak’s party unveiled a series of pledges intended to build momentum early in UK election campaigning, YouGov said.

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Labour was 27 points ahead of the Tories in the survey by YouGov, which was commissioned by Sky News and conducted from May 27 to May 28. The poll, with a sample size of 2,128 adults, found 47% of voters backing Labour, compared with 44% three days earlier. Tory support fell two percentage points to 20%.

Read more: Inside Sunak’s Hail-Mary Plan to Narrow Poll Gap With Labour

Though it’s only one survey and the election campaign is less than a week old, YouGov’s findings will still gain attention because the Tory strategy is to put a dent in Labour’s lead as quickly as possible, in order to create the sense that the mood is shifting as voting day draws near.

Whereas three polls published Tuesday pointed to little change in the picture, YouGov’s fieldwork was conducted after a series of eye-catching promises by Sunak, including the reintroduction of mandatory national service for young Britons and a pledge that state pension payments would not be subject to tax.

Both were aimed squarely at winning back core Tory support that polls suggested were shifting toward the right-wing Reform UK party founded by Brexit campaigner Nigel Farage. The pensioners tax break was also designed to challenge Labour to match the commitment, knowing Starmer’s party would struggle to show how it could pay for the measure on top of its other priorities.

YouGov’s findings suggest the Tory strategy may be having an effect on one front, with support for Reform UK down two percentage points. But that was offset by the gain by Labour, which is focusing on issues including the patient backlog in the National Health Service and the economy.

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