New research from the Fabian Society shows that the Labour party is winning the battle of values. At a time when there is little to separate the two main parties in the polls, a survey finds that Labour has a clear lead with respect to voters’ deeper instincts. The findings come from Fabian Society/YouGov polling conducted in November.
- 41 per cent of adults said that the Labour party shared many or all their values, while only 17 per cent said that the party did not share any of their values.
- 33 per cent of adults said that the Conservative party shared many or all their values, while 24 per cent said that the party did not share any of their values.
Labour’s lead on values is seen among men and women (with women slightly closer to Labour than men) and among both ABC1 and C2DE social classes.
This is promising news for Labour as many more people say the party shares their values than voted for the party at the last election. There is therefore a significant pool of voters the party should be able to reach out to. 31 per cent of adults say they’d vote Labour in an election tomorrow, compared to the 41 who say the party shares their values. By contrast, 29 per cent of adults said they would vote for the Conservative party, leaving a much smaller pool of people who share values with the Tories but are not already intending to vote for the party.
However, Labour is badly behind the Conservatives on values with regard to two (overlapping) groups – people aged over 65 and people who voted Leave in the EU referendum. Only 25 per cent of over-65s said that the Labour party shared many or all of their values, while 54 per cent said the same about the Conservatives. Among Leave voters the figures were 28 per cent and 48 per cent respectively. But even here things could be worse for Labour, because older people and Leavers do not identify with the Conservatives on values nearly as much as Remain voters and younger people do with respect to Labour.
The Fabian / YouGov survey also asked people how well the two main parties understand people who live in their area. On this question Labour’s lead was even more commanding.
- 38 per cent of adults said that the Labour party understands people in their area very well or fairly well, while only 18 per cent said that the party did not understand people in the area at all.
- 27 per cent of adults said that the Conservative party understands people in their area very well or fairly well, with another 27 per cent saying that the party did not understand people in the area at all.
Overall, considerably more people think that Labour understands people in their area than currently say they would vote Labour. For the Conservatives it is the opposite – more people say they would vote Conservative than believe that the party understands people in their area very well or fairly well.
Labour’s task is clear. The party needs to reach out to people of every age and background who are not Labour voters now, but believe that the party shares their values and understands their community. If it can do that then Labour victories at local and national level will come.
YouGov poll conducted on 7-9th November with a sample of 3,619 GB adults