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BBC Sunday Politics Labour Candidates Survey

ComRes interviewed 73 Labour candidates online from 1st August and 16th September. 

Date Published: 20 Sep 2014


English votes in Parliament

Two thirds (66%) of Labour Parliamentary Candidates oppose not allowing MPs from Scottish constituencies to vote on issues that do not affect Scotland, while a quarter support it according to a ComRes survey of Labour’s parliamentary candidates for the BBC’s Sunday Politics.

Public spending

Asked about the level of public spending under the last Labour government, 85% of said the level of spending was “about right”, 10% said it was “too low” with just 4% saying it was “too high”. Asked how a future Labour Government should reduce the deficit, 42% said it should be done mainly through raising taxes, 18% by cutting spending, 7% by increasing borrowing and 4% said there was no need to reduce the deficit. 


On policy, half of the candidates surveyed (51%) want to scrap the UK's nuclear deterrent, Trident with 37% opposed to the scrapping of Trident.  Four in five (81%) want to nationalise the railways.

Relationship with the Trade Unions

29% of Labour candidates believe that their Party's relationship with the trade unions is not close enough with 71% saying it's about right. Not one Labour candidate surveyed thinks the relationship between Labour and the Trade Unions is too close.

Ed Miliband

The poll of Labour candidates reveals strong backing for their Leader, Ed  Miliband  is  the  senior  figure  Labour  candidates  most want  to  have  on  the  doorstep, campaigning  with them, Yvette Cooper is the second most desired fellow campaigner (64% and 38% respectively). Yvette Cooper meanwhile is the most popular choice as the next Party Leader, chosen by 19%.

TV Debates

An  overwhelming  majority  (88%)  of  Labour  candidates  believe  there  should  be  televised leaders’ debates in 2015, however, just one in three (32%) think Nigel Farage should take part.

Coalition or minority government?

Around two thirds (64%) of Labour candidates would rather Labour form a minority government than form a Coalition with the Liberal Democrats (which is supported by 34%) in the event of a hung parliament next year.

Tom Mludzinski, Head of Political Polling, ComRes said: “While the public find it hard to warm to Ed Miliband, our poll shows that Labour candidates are keen to support their leader. He’s the most popular choice as the politician they want with them knocking on doors in their constituencies and there is very strong backing for his Prime Ministerial credentials. While this doesn't chime with Mr Miliband’s poor public image, the candidates appear unwilling to criticise the man who could lead them to victory in 2015.”

Methodology note:

ComRes interviewed 73 Labour candidates online from 1st August and 16th September. ComRes is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules.