Polls suggest 'Brown bounce' over

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Indy Politics

A revival in Prime Minister Gordon Brown's re-election chances evaporated on Sunday as two polls forecast victory for the Conservative party in a parliamentary election due by mid-2010.

Polls at the end of last month had suggested Brown's Labour government was narrowing the gap with David Cameron's Conservatives, with the surveys saying an election would result in a hung parliament and no party in overall control.

But the latest opinion polls gave Cameron double digit leads that would see him end more than a decade of Labour rule and enjoy a parliamentary majority of between 20 and 50 seats.

A YouGov poll for the Sunday Times put the Conservatives down one point at 40 per cent, with Labour and the Liberal Democrats unchanged on 27 per cent and 18 per cent respectively.

The ICM poll in the Sunday Telegraph said 40 per cent of voters backed the Conservatives, down two points since the paper's last poll in October, with Labour up four points on 29 per cent and the Liberal Democrats down two points on 19 percent.

The figures will disappoint Brown, as his Chancellor Alistair Darling readies budget plans expected to target tax rises on the rich to pay for continued support for the recession-hit economy and reduce a record budget deficit.

Wednesday's pre-budget report has been billed as Brown's last chance to dent Cameron's opinion poll lead.