Tuesday round up


D minus 30.
Tonight’s polls:
YouGov/Sun (5th Apr-6th Apr) CON 40%(-1), LAB 32%(+1), LDEM 17%(-1)

As far as I know the only new GB poll tonight is YouGov’s daily poll in the Sun. I’m sure I heard something in the BBC newspaper review about a marginals poll in the Indy, but nothing has appeared yet so if it does exist it will have to wait for tomorrow. For publication tonight most polls would have had to start their fieldwork over the bank holiday weekend and I expect most will have waited until after to start. Populus for one started the fieldwork for their new poll this morning, and we will have their first poll of the campaign tomorrow night. Ipsos MORI have a new marginals poll due out on the 8th.

YouGov’s poll doesn’t show any significant change – all the figures are within 1 point of yesterday’s poll. The lead is back in single figures, but Conservatives are still on the psychologically (but not electorally) important figure of 40%. For those who follow the methodological intricacies of polls, without the turnout weighting it would have had a 7 point lead, so the same as the Tories were on through last week with YouGov.

The Lib Dems are back down to 17% points, a low score by YouGov’s recent standards. Amongst other things, the BBC producer guidelines for the general election come into play today with the announcement of the election date, so the Lib Dems can look forward to having a higher level of coverage in the broadcast media.

Another interesting development is that after the election Parliament will not reassemble until the 18th May, 12 days after the election compared to just 6 days in 2005 – presumably agreed in order to allow extra time for horsetrading in the even of a hung Parliament (UPDATE – nope, it is to allow a longer period for desk clearing and settling in, it was decided by the Commons Modernisation Committee long before a hung Parliament looked on the cards)


414 Responses to “Tuesday round up”

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  1. i like the countdown…

  2. Trends are important. In polls they are all that matter. When a company changes its methodology trends become ahrder to follow. Not with YouGov their change and its effects are transparent.

    But overall, I am now quite confused I must admit.

    Is an AR 13% a 10% or is an AR 10% a 13%
    Is an ICM 4% a 4% or is an ICM 4% a rogue.
    MOri, BRMB both think 5%
    Harris and Opinium are certain its 10%.

    When it was months before an election, these things did not bother me. Now they do.

    Over the last 528 polls the Tories have been 38-9%
    Over the last 528 polls the Reds have been 31-32%

    Where are we now?

    Please help……….

    I still forsee a tightening…. with AR narrowing, ICM narrowing, Ipsos narrowing I am beginnign to think I see fruition

    With YouGov and Harris widening I am not so sure……

    On balance, my gut tells me ICM is a rogue and the lead is 7%.

  3. I’ve checked the FT. What they’ve done isn’t an opinion poll in the marginals, its an economic assessment. They’ve found that the marginals have a much larger increase in unemployment than average. No mention of any voting intention (or indeed any other kind of question) in their article.

  4. @ Éoin

    Lead is only 4 – 5.

  5. Interesting article in The Times online, UK polling gets a mention too. http://timesonline.typepad.com/election10/poll-watch/

  6. I am at a loss as to which way we are heading. I will reserve judgement and further comment until a few more photo shots of the main candidates with babies, and until Wednesday night. Goodnight. :-)

  7. @Amber,

    I have no doubt it will be soon… ;)

    ps. what constit are you?

  8. Frankly, I don’t think anyone has presented any real reason to believe that the WMA figure calculated on UKPR isn’t the most accurate assessment of the current poll ratings. The only fly in the ointment was the occasional AR poll but they have started to conform now.

    We all have our favourites and our betes-noire, but AW crunches them all together and weights them fairly sensibly. I am guessing the lead is within spitting distance of 8% currently.

    A Labour majority is possible, but vanishingly unlikely. Any other result is quite possible to envisage from this starting position.

  9. @Surb,

    I will make sure my son (Catháil) can recite that :)

  10. Edinburgh & Leith :-) And we are working hard to hold it. It was very safe for Lab until the boundary changes – now we have some work to do.

    It is an amazing contituency that includes Princes Street, the New Town & also some of the least wealthy parts of central Edinburgh & Leith.

    There is nowhere in the world I’d rather live & I have been to some very nice places.

  11. sorry about the typos, got coffee on my keyboard.

  12. @RICHARD O
    “I am at a loss as to which way we are heading. I will reserve judgement and further comment until a few more photo shots of the main candidates with babies”

    You will not see photos of all the candidates with their babies – Nick Clegg will not be using his on the campaign. Possibly because they all have Spanish names and he doesn’t want to wind up the tories with Lib Dem leanings, or maybe as a matter of principle.

    The other two though will certainly be touting their children and pregnant wives around.

  13. @RICHARD O
    “I am at a loss as to which way we are heading.”
    I’ll let you know at around 4am on May 7th :) . That’s unless we have to wait for the results from Northern Ireland…

  14. John Fletcher:

    I just nicked it from the Guardian. I am sure Labour Election Campaign HQ have lots of capable people.

  15. @Amber
    A few years ago I visited Edinburgh & the Castle -beautiful city. ;-) Do hope you keep hold of it -I’m just going to see Anthony’s constituency list to find out what the party %’s are.

  16. @Surbiton

    You can’t delete it yourself, you’ll have to wait for Anthony to moderate it.
    So a simple apology would probably suffice :)

  17. I suspect that the Lib Dems are going to get a real boost in this campaign. BBC News today was showering them with attention unseen for most of the year (same with the Nats), although Paxman was a little sneery on newsnight.

    Which side the LDs pick up voters from isn’t clear however. My instinct is that they’ll draw support roughly equally from Labour and the Tories, but there’s no way of telling yet. By next Tuesday they will have been given plenty of the oxygen of publicity, so the polls should be able to show whether they’re raiding support from one side more effectively than from the other.

  18. Wise choice that should end it….

    now AR, YG and ICM all have th epolls narrowing, do we agree?

  19. “Another interesting development is that after the election Parliament will not reassemble until the 18th May, 12 days after the election compared to just 6 days in 2005 – presumably agreed in order to allow extra time for horsetrading in the even of a hung Parliament.”

    It was a change put forward by the Commons modernisation committee three years ago to allow more time for old MPs to clear their desks and new MPs to be allocated offices/ learn their way about etc.

    It had nothing to do with the possibility of a hung Parliament – although it might turn out to be useful!

  20. @Surb,

    I’ll let you off then. You sound very reasonable. :-)

    My friend has just put £50 on tories at 1.8 on betfair. He’ll get £90 back if they win a majority.

    I am actually a bit nervous for him and not confident at all. :-(

  21. @surb, dont bite

    @Jack he (I presum he but apol if i am wrong) withdrew lets move on

  22. @Amber

    “Lead is only 4 – 5.”

    Then why doesn’t that show up in the polls? What evidence do you have for that assertion?

  23. I don’t really like the fact that the date for parliament reconvening is going to be a week later than usual because it could be argued that it gives a psychological boost to those who would like to see a hung parliament.

  24. Good, Surbiton. I totally agreed personally with what you wrote, but having excoriated Craig for his partisan stuff on the last thread, I have to be consistent and say I’d rather not see partisan pro-Labour stuff either. Not here anyway.
    I’m interested in your handle. If you live in Surbiton I was leafletting in your constituency on Friday (in Norbiton Ward). Are you a K & S Labour Party member?

  25. @ AL J

    I’m really glad you’ve been here. Pictures can’t convey the magnificence of the castle & the shabby grandeur of the Old Town, New Town & Leith. I am going to have to stop or I will be turning Anthony’s site into a travelblog.

  26. Jack Jones – 2 wrongs don’t make a right! Please desist!

    I hope your post is deleted, as well as (for the sake of balance) the offending one by Surbiton.

  27. @Eoin

    Re: 12:13

    If the lead is 7%, then ICM showing 4% is not a rogue.

  28. @jack,

    polls narrowing,

    would you agree?

  29. AMBER – I too absolutely adore Edinburgh & have frequently visited. It would be nice to visit when the festival ISN’T on one of these days. I enjoy going to the Oxford (like Rebus) and Bennets in Tollcross.

  30. @Yariv,

    but if it was 7.5% lead then it is..

    my 7% is slightly, and I say slightly, on the optimistic side…….

  31. Simon N – I would imagine that if they pick up votes – and that is becoming doubtful by their current showing in the polls – it will come from Labour. The major two reasons for this are:

    – Labour supporters hold ideas on policy nearer those of the LibDems than do Conservative supporters

    – Conservative supporters want to get rid of Brown & Labour and by switching vote to LibDem will not achieve this goal

    It would therefore seem logical that as has been pointed out on other threads by other posters that some swing between Labour and LibDem will occur in the polls. Presently this does not seem to be manifesting itself to the LibDems advantage. In the meantime Conservative support seems to be solidifying and even increasing.

  32. @Amber,

    Am i correct ot say the libs and SNP and Tory all have a presence there…?

    I travel to Glasgow quite a bit but only been to Edinburgh twice…

    my son’s family are from rossshire (charlei kennedy land)

  33. @Barnaby Marder

    I can tell you without doubt that Surbiton’s and Jack Jones’ posts are both going to be deleted, and quite rightly too.

    Lots of people get sick of being harrassed by political activists all the time, but when it’s in a place where it’s explicitly prohibited it’s just inexcusable, really. I know people will get overexcited with an election coming up, but let’s all try and control ourselves!

  34. @SURBITON

    In which case I withdraw my comments too.

    @EION
    “@jack, polls narrowing, would you agree?”
    I don’t see any evidence of it yet – the Tory lead seems to be around 8% and not going anywhere much over the past few days, given the MOE.

    I find it hard to see what event is going to make people shift from one party to the other in the masses needed – I guarantee it won’t be the stilted leaders’ “debates”.

    There do appear though to be an awful lot of undecideds in these polls. I have to admit I find it quite frightening that the people who are going to decide on the next government really haven’t thought yet as to who they are going to vote for. If you haven’t made your mind up one way or the other after 13 years then we should question whether they should be allowed to vote!

    It’s scary that people care so little about how we are governed, and by whom.

  35. @Eoin

    Sorry to bore you with details again, but 3% is the MoE on each party’s score, not the lead. The MoE on the lead is almost certainly over 3.5%.

  36. @ Yariv

    TNS & ICM. Neither are panels. TNS is face to face interviews with confidential headline voting. ICM is a phone poll.

    People on panels choose to be on them. This doesn’t matter most of the time but when it gets closer to an election the random, off-line sampling gives a better result IMO.

    Panels are a fairly new thing. How many GE’s have there been where panels are used? I’m not maligning them BTW. They are very good & daily polls would be impossible without them – but I am expecting ICM to be closests to the actual result at the finish.

  37. @Yariv

    In all probability but in the interests of common sense what would be the point of a WMA if a 7 could be a 12% or a 2%…..

    Have you not seen the pub landlord…. British common sense!

  38. @ Amber

    Not forgetting Arthur’s Seat surely – hope Beltane sees in a fertile political new year!

  39. “I can tell you without doubt that Surbiton’s and Jack Jones’ posts are both going to be deleted, and quite rightly too.”

    I agree – but I would point out that I am NOT a political activist, nor am I a member of any political party (but I was about 10 years ago). I just thought that Surbiton should not be allowed to get away with just spouting what is clearly being fed to Labour activists to spin onto as many web forums as possible.

  40. Bill Roy – I have spoken to several people recently who are voting LD in various constituencies near to my own one. They were all without exception former Tory voters; indeed one was a Tory candidate. Only one had ever voted Labour, in 1997.
    The truth is that the picture is different in different areas. Where I live quite a lot of the LD vote is indeed ex-Labour, but it tends to be less so in most seats near, but outside, where I live.

  41. @ Éoin,

    Am i correct ot say the libs and SNP and Tory all have a presence there…?
    ————————————————————–
    Yes – & they are all good candidates too. None can be dissed in any way whatsoever.
    ————————————————————–
    I travel to Glasgow quite a bit but only been to Edinburgh twice…
    ————————————————————–
    I like both cities – but Edinburgh definitely has the magic. Both have large universities & a big student population – I guess you come to Glasgow ‘on business’.
    ————————————————————–
    my son’s family are from rossshire (charlei kennedy land)
    —————————————————————
    Parts of Rosshire are beautiful. Even we reds are fond of Charles Kennedy.

  42. @ Bill Roy: Hmmm, perhaps but I think that there also lots of similarities between the soft Conservative vote and the soft Lib Dem vote. When the Conservatives wobbled at the start of the year I seriously considered switching my support to the Lib Dems, a notion that I only rejected after discovering how bad my LD candidate was! I suspect that there will be quite a few others in my position, prepared to abandon ship at the first sign of sinking – but then again, the same could be said of soft Labour voters. I know one or two people who would vote Labour to prevent a Tory majority, but Lib Dem if a hung parliament looked likely.

  43. @AMBER
    “but I am expecting ICM to be closests to the actual result at the finish.”
    Looking at the 2005 election YouGov got the final result closest:

    YouGov (3 May) – Lab 36, Con 33, Lib 23, Oth 8
    Mori (3 May) – Lab 38, Con 33, Lib 23, Oth 6
    Harris (3 May) – Lab 38, Con 33, Lib 22, Oth 7
    Populus (2 May) – Lab 38, Con 32, Lib 21, Oth 9
    ICM (1 May) – Lab 38, Con 32, Lib 22, Oth 8

    Actual Result: (5 May)
    Lab – 35.3, Con 32.3, Lib 22.1, Oth 10.3

    All of the last few polls got the Tory vote pretty close, but most overestimate Labour and underestimated the Others. Difference was around 3% in most polls.

    If a similar pattern emerges in this campaign – voters for one or other of the big parties deciding to pick one of the minor parties at the last minute (or differential turnout) then we might see Labour underperform once again.

  44. @Surbiton
    Thank you for alerting me to the Guardian article -there seems so much to read all of a sudden -but I will have a look soon.(some people are so touchy) lol ;-)

  45. @ GREEN GRASS

    Thank you – I love Arthur’s seat & all the legends/ history that surrounds it. And I do the whole Beltane thing, so if that was a guess about an aspect of my character – well done!

  46. Actually looking at each of the last 5 election campaigns it appears to me that the last few polls before the actual election day overestimated the Labour share of the vote by around 3%-5%.

    I could understand this for the times when they were in power and likely to be reelected (2001 and 2005) because Labour voters could switch to one of the minor parties and not feel they’d let the Tories in.

    But I can’t understand this in important elections like 1992 and 1997 – presumably in those days the polls were just more unreliable?

  47. @ JACK JONES

    Yes, I knew YG were closest last time… but it’ll be ICM this time. YG have made one tweak too many to their weighting. ;-)

    As to the Labour last minute fade in 2005 – that was because, safe in the knowledge that Labour would win, voters could protest, vote their conscience or pick a good local candidate from any party without worrying they’d get the ‘wrong’ government.

    The last minute swaps will be for the opposite reason this time around, IMO. Labour will benefit.

  48. @Jack Jones

    **Actually looking at each of the last 5 election campaigns it appears to me that the last few polls before the actual election day overestimated the Labour share of the vote by around 3%-5%. **

    You need to read Anthony’s polling guide to understand why Labour’s vote was overestimated in those elections.
    The ‘weighting’ seems to have ironed out that problem now.

  49. @Jack Jones/Amber

    There are fairly simple explanations to both problems raised… but they take wee while to explain (I’ll do so tomorrow)

    For now, ICM have acquired the repuation for the most accurate polsters- for a reason…. see 1997 result

    regarding overestimating Labour’s vote… due to the public embarassment of admitting you were an actual tory, a portion of them kept it hush hush- they are called shy tories… we have pretty much nailed it now so it need not affect this result… if anything there is a grwing embarassment about liking gordon brown’s crew hence the arrival of the bashful brownites. this is not calculated at present, since the proff is as yet only anecdotal….

    alos there may still be some shy tories.. among young people and northerners one might imagine.. where the stigma abou tliking blue perists… equally south of the M25, there may well be a stigma to liking brown….

    i hope that explains for now….

    nite nite :s :s

  50. @Bill Roy (12.55)

    “Simon N – I would imagine that if they pick up votes – and that is becoming doubtful by their current showing in the polls – it will come from Labour. ”

    Bill,
    you are omitting the fact that IMO currently there seems to be as much intention to keep the other party out as there is to keep your own party in.

    Here in Geordieland we have two Labour seats which may be winnable by the Lib Dems. The Tories are nowhere. Consequently there is big push by the LDs to encourage the few tories to vote LD in order to remove the Labour candidates one of whom is Nick Brown. I can see this happening in other Labour seats where the tories have no chance of winning.

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