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Fact check: How close are Reform UK and the Conservatives in the polls?

10 Jun 2024 2 minute read
Leader of Reform UK Nigel Farage (right) and Richard Tice announce their party’s economic policy during a press conference.Photo James Manning/PA Wire

Full Fact via Election Check 24

Reform UK leader Nigel Farage claimed on the BBC’s Sunday with Laura Kuenssberg that “right now” his party was “just two to three points behind the Conservatives”.

However this is a selective take on what recent polls show.

Of the polls we’d seen when Mr Farage spoke on 9 June, there had been three where the gap between the two parties was that small.

YouGov’s from 3-4 June had the Conservatives on 19% and Reform UK on 17%, while its more recent poll from 5-6 June put Reform UK on 16% and the Conservatives on 19%. And Redfield and Wilton’s from 5-6 June had the Conservatives on 19% and Reform UK on 17%.

Wider gap

However, there have been a number of other polls which show a wider gap.

For instance, Deltapoll from 6-8 June put the Conservatives on 21% and Reform UK on 12%, while Whitestone Insight (7 June) had the parties six percentage points apart and WeThink (6-7 June) five.

Meanwhile Opinium from 5-7 June had the Conservatives on 24% and Reform UK on 12%, and Savanta (5-7 June) on 26% and 11% respectively.

Speaking on the programme, Mr Farage said he had concerns over how some pollsters prompted for Reform UK when recording voting intention.

Labour’s tax rise claim

Tax has been a key battleground between Labour and the Conservatives so far in this election, and we saw that again in the BBC seven-party debate last Friday, when Labour’s deputy leader Angela Rayner claimed there have been 26 tax rises under the Conservatives.

This is similar to a claim we’ve seen Labour make before, about there having been 25 tax rises since the last election.

It’s not clear how Labour arrived at this exact figure. A list we’ve seen previously of what appears to be the 25 tax rises includes a range of tax changes that have occurred since 2019, such as an increase in corporation tax and freezes to some tax thresholds, but seems to omit others.

The Institute for Fiscal Studies said in January that it’s likely there have been hundreds of specific tax rises (and cuts) since 2019, and what’s more significant is that this was “the biggest tax-raising parliament in modern times”.

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Steve A Duggan
Steve A Duggan
4 hours ago

I suspect on the day the Conservatives will do slightly better than the polls suggest and Reform will probably get no seats. I wouldn’t be surprised if the LibDems become the main opposition party.

2 hours ago
Reply to  Steve A Duggan

I disagree, I fear They want reform to succeed because they will actually try and get rid of our parliaments in Scotland and Wales, as opposed to The Tories just being all talk.

8 minutes ago
Reply to  Steve A Duggan

As much as I would love to love the Lib Dems being the main opposition party, I cannot see that happening, although I can see them making big gains. If Reform continue to drag the Tories further to the right then the moderates will either stay with Starmer’s Labour or switch to the Lib Dems. People forget that when Boris took over he purged all the moderates in his party, those moderates haven’t gone away.

Y Cymro
Y Cymro
1 hour ago

Seeing Reform UK are effectively made up of extreme Conservatives who are former Ukip & Brexit party politicians, find it puzzling how gullible the electorate are. Don’t they ever learn? They change their name, again, and lo and behold, it’s a new party promising a land of milk and honey. Oh but there’s a caveat. It can only be realised if we hate asylum seekers and drive them out with fiery pitchforks, who as you know are the root of all our problems.

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