What should happen next? What really matters? And how bad is this crisis? My new Brexit deal poll

By Lord Ashcroft

The vote has been deferred while the Prime Minister seeks “reassurances” from the EU, but her message to the House of Commons yesterday was clear – this is the only Brexit deal on the table, and there is no realistic prospect of substantially changing it. Theresa May’s campaign to sell the agreement to sceptical MPs and the public therefore continues. My last survey in late November found that the proposed deal had a cool reception, but with large numbers still to make up their minds. My latest 5,000-sample poll finds shows that more people now have an opinion – but with the balance tipping away from the deal rather than in its favour (more…)

My new Brexit poll: good for Theresa May, bad for her deal

By Lord Ashcroft

After perhaps the most difficult fortnight as Prime Minister, which is saying something, the news from my latest poll, conducted on Wednesday and Thursday, is surprisingly mixed for Theresa May. Though she would probably say this is a side issue and she is focused on other things, her personal standing among voters is actually consolidated. She now leads Jeremy Corbyn by 15 points in the best Prime Minister stakes, and while “not sure” still leads the field over both leaders, the proportion naming Mrs. May has risen while Mr. Corbyn’s numbers have fallen, most dramatically among his own voters (more…)

‘I was like, we have to pick between these two? But honestly, I’m kind of pleasantly surprised’: my final pre-midterm focus groups in California

By Lord Ashcroft

The final round of our American research tour takes us to two districts in California, one in prosperous Orange County, and another further north around the city of Fresno. This is usually thought of as a heavily Democratic state, but the Republicans are defending crucial districts here that could decide whether they keep control of Congress this week. These include districts which elected Republican Congressmen two years ago but chose Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump for President – how they choose this time will help determine the balance of power in Washington.

The migrant caravan making its way to the US from Honduras continued to loom large in voters’ minds as they began to make their minds up. Our groups’ reaction was a combination of sympathy for the families leaving their countries in search of a better life, and resolve that America’s borders – including California’s – had the be protected and the law enforced (more…)

New Ashcroft in America podcast – California

By Lord Ashcroft

In the last of my series of pre-midterm podcasts, voters in key districts in California discuss the latest political developments and consider their voting decisions in the elections that will determine the balance of power in Washington

Ashcroft in America podcast: my interviews with Bob Shrum and Reed Galen

By Lord Ashcroft

In the latest edition of the Ashcroft in America podcast I interview campaigning legend Bob Shrum about the future of the Democrats, how Hillary could have won, and his time working in British politics – and Reed Galen, who once worked for President Bush, John McCain and Arnold Schwarzenegger but now helps run the Serve America Movement, which is aiming to end two-party dominance in Washington.

‘Why should I change what I think or do so I can win? What kind of win is that?’ My interview with Gov. John Kasich

By Lord Ashcroft

John Kasich is the Governor of Ohio, and won over 4 million votes in the battle to become the Republican nominee for President two years ago. He declined to endorse Donald Trump, and even decided not to attend the party’s nominating convention despite it being held in his own state. At the Governor’s Mansion in Columbus, Ohio’s capital, I asked him about his reflections on the bruising encounter that was the 2016 Republican primary.

“Well I don’t think it’s a very good way to pick President is to begin with (more…)

New Ashcroft in America podcast: my interview with John Kasich, Governor of Ohio

By Lord Ashcroft

In the latest edition of the Ashcroft in America podcast, Ohio Governor John Kasich talks to me about the bruising 2016 Republican primary, his criticisms of President Trump, the future of his party and his plans for 2020.

New Ashcroft in America podcast: Iowa and Minnesota

By Lord Ashcroft

Our US focus group tour takes us to Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and Minneapolis, Minnesota, where we listen to voters discuss the Saudis, the Honduras caravan, President Trump and his attitude to women, potential alternative presidential candidates, divisions in American politics, and how to vote in next month’s midterm elections.

Ashcroft in America podcast: my interview with Steve Hilton

By Lord Ashcroft

In the latest Ashcroft in America podcast Steve Hilton, Fox News host and former Downing Street adviser, talks to me about Brexit, Trump and the different effects of populism in Britain and America, and offers some stern advice to Mrs. May.

‘We’re no longer Democrat and Republican, we’re socialism against conservatism’: listening to voters before the midterm elections

By Lord Ashcroft

Next month’s midterm elections could change the balance of power in Washington. As before the presidential election two years ago, I’m conducting focus groups in key districts across the United States to listen to real voters as they weigh up their decision: whether to keep the Republicans in full control, or whether to put the Democrats in charge of the House of Representatives and even the Senate. (You can hear what they have to say – as well as the thoughts of the politicians and commentators I am interviewing along the way – in my regular Ashcroft in America podcast). Our tour began in New Hampshire, where we spoke to primary voters from both parties, and New Jersey, where we heard from independents who had backed the Republicans in the last Congressional elections, and people had voted only reluctantly for Donald Trump (more…)