Skip to Content


Blair’s poll dip before his 1997 landslide is reassuring for the Tories

Also in Barometer: what kills us on the roads; where did the white afro begin; how do police use terrorism powers?

3 June 2017

9:00 AM

3 June 2017

9:00 AM


Diane Abbott likened her rejection of earlier pro-terror sympathies to losing her afro hairstyle. To African-Americans in the 1960s, the afro was a rejection of black attempts to ape white styles. Yet 100 years earlier it was seen as an epitome of white beauty. In 1864, a P. T. Barnum show in New York, featured a ‘Circassian beauty’, said to be from the Northern Caucasus. A German physiologist had cited these Black Sea people as the ‘purest example’ of the white race. The woman had a huge ball of moss-like hair. Some say the style came from Circassian women captured as sex slaves for Turkish harems — their hair was shampooed in beer to appear African.

Lucky dip

The Conservative poll lead fell to just 5 per cent. Toris can take heart from ICM polls leading up to Tony Blair’s 1997 landslide:

Lab %
2 March 48
31 March 46
7 April 46
14 April 45
21 April 42
30 April 43
Result (1 May) 44.4

Source: ICM/Guardian

Con %
2 March 30
31 March 32
7 April 34
14 April 31
21 April 37
30 April 33
Result (1 May) 31.4

Source: ICM/Guardian

Terror by numbers

Temporary exclusion orders, which can stop British citizens re-entering the country, have been used just once. How often are other anti-terror measures used?
Section 44 stop and searches (allowed without reasonable suspicion): 550,000 were carried out from 2007-08 to 2011,
of which 3,000 led to arrests.
Section 43 stop and searches (requiring reasonable suspicion that the subject is a terrorist): 5,046 since 2011.
Control orders: used against 52 people from 2005 to their abolition in 2011.
TPIMs (watered-down control orders):
6 had been used up to last October.
Prosecutions for terrorism offences: 242 from 2009 to 2015; 193 led to convictions.
Source: House of Commons Library

Driven to death

200 motorists a day are being caught using a mobile phone, despite tougher laws. How were 2015’s 1,566 road deaths attributed?

Impairment by alcohol 137
Illness or disability, mental/physical 121
Fatigue 68
Impairment by drugs 67
Distraction inside vehicle 66
Driver using mobile phone 22
Defective eyesight 10

Source: Department for Transport

Show comments