Labour appears to be winning the battle for the support of voters in the “squeezed middle”, according to the latest ComRes survey for The Independent.
As Ed Miliband identified people on low and middle incomes as the key political battleground, the poll showed that Labour is ahead of the Conservatives among the three demographic groups covering these voters.
Overall, the survey gives Labour a four-point lead, down from the six-point advantage it enjoyed in the most recent ComRes poll for The Independent on Sunday two weeks ago. Labour is on 39 per cent (down three points), the Tories on 35 per cent (down one point), the Liberal Democrats on 12 per cent (up one point) and other parties on 14 per cent (up three points). At a general election fought under the current first-past-the-post system, these figures would give Labour an overall majority of 44.
Labour is ahead of the Tories among the bottom DE social group (by 45 to 30 per cent); among the C2 skilled manual workers (by 44 to 33 per cent) and the C1 lower middle class (by 38 to 33 per cent). However, the Tories enjoy a big lead (by 41 to 33 per cent) among the top AB group.
Although Labour is ahead in every other region, it trails the Tories by 46 to 29 per cent in the South East, which includes London. There is also a divide between the young and the old. Labour is ahead among voters between the ages of 18 and 54. It is neck and neck with the Tories among 55-64 year-olds but David Cameron’s party has a big lead (50 to 30 per cent) among those aged 65 and over.
Although last year’s slump in Liberal Democrat support appears to have bottomed out, only half (50 per cent) of those who voted for Nick Clegg’s party at last year’s election say they would do so now, while 29 per cent say they would back Labour.
ComRes interviewed 1,007 GB adults by telephone between February 25-27, 2011. Data were weighted to be demographically representative of all GB adults. Data were also weighted by past vote recall.