By Lord Ashcroft
In my latest round of battleground research I have returned to the fourteen Conservative-held seats with Labour in second place that I first polled in the spring. The most striking feature is that rising support for UKIP has eroded the swing to Labour. Though the Tories are down a point on their share in March and April in these seats, Labour are down by three points and UKIP are up five.
There are three points worth noting about this. First, the most immediately striking effect of this shift is that UKIP now lead in two seats – Thurrock and Thanet South. They have also jumped to second in Great Yarmouth, where the Tories are now ahead, having been behind Labour in my previous round of polling. (more…)