He who laughs last in May will laugh the loudest, but David Cameron may allow himself a wry chuckle today after the results of a new poll put his personal rating at 41per cent, 18 points higher than that of Ed Miliband.
According to the Opinium poll for the Observer, Cameron’s rating is the highest it has been for four years, and puts him at a deficit of just one percentage point, with 42 per cent of the population disapproving of him and 41 per cent approving. Only 23 per cent of those polled said they approved of Miliband, while 52 per cent disapprove.
Cameron will be relived that potentially toxic discussions surrounding HSBC and tax evasion have seemingly not been laid at his feet, while Miliband can take some comfort in the fact that, despite his own personal ratings dragging along the floor, Labour remains two points ahead of the Conservatives in the polls. Miliband's party is on 35 per cent to the Tories' 33, Ukip is on 14 per cent, the Lib Dems on eight and the Greens six per cent.
Interestingly, voters seem to be ready to switch allegiance readily, which could point to a riveting battle in the lead up to the election. 27 per cent of those polled indicated they would or might change their mind before the big day.