Following the TNS poll earlier this week that showed the SNP catching Labour in Holyrood voting intentions, there is a new YouGov poll for the Scotsman that shows them ahead in constituency voting intention. Voting intentions stand at…

Westminster: CON 17%, LAB 46%, LDEM 6%, SNP 26%
Holyrood Constituency: CON 11%, LAB 39%, LDEM 5%, SNP 40%
Holyrood Regional: CON 12%, LAB 39%, LDEM 5%, SNP 32%, Greens 6%

Note that YouGov polls for the Scottish Parliament and Welsh Assembly have now moved onto a campaign footing, so are being weighted by likelihood to vote, hence I haven’t included changes from the previous poll. In this case likelihood to vote didn’t actually make much difference – increasing SNP & Lab by 1 point each in the constituency vote, and decreasing the Lib Dems by 1 point in the regional vote. The poll was conducted before the first Scottish leaders’ debate.

The SNP have overtaken Labour in the constituency vote, but Labour remain ahead in the regional vote, which tends to be more important in deciding who actually ends up with more seats. John Curtice’s projection in the Scotsman has these shares of the vote translating into 57 seats for Labour, 48 for the SNP, 13 for the Conservatives, 6 for the Greens and 5 for the Liberal Democrats. Historically Labour have actually tended to do worse, not better, in the regional vote, so the pattern here is somewhat unusual – looking at the data it seems to be because people who would vote Green or SSP in the regional vote are more likely to vote SNP in the constituency vote.


83 Responses to “Latest YouGov Scottish polling”

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  1. Just wondering if any Scottish posters have a view on the likely impact of the budget move on North Sea oil and gas taxation on the Scottish elections?

    This morning two more companies have either cancelled or signalled an intention to cancel development work and many more are reviewing their exploration options with a view to moving them into Norwegian waters.

    I recall a poster on an earlier thread claiming to the effect that Norway had higher taxation than the UK even after these changes, but what he didn’t mention is that while Norwegian tax rates are higher they have much more substantial relief available one year after investment, while Osborne is taking our tax reliefs the other way. And this at a time when countries are turning away from nuclear which will result in a substantial increase in demand for gas in particular.

    It’s looking highly likely that his move will backfire in spectacular fashion and apart from the potential that he won’t raise the £2b he needs for the fuel tax reductions there must be some serious implications for Scottish jobs on the east coast?

  2. OT: Interesting to listen to BBC Radio5live’s mock election (the Victoria Derbishire programme which has just finished, so will be on iplayer soon). The pattern of votes cast in the AV election was noticably different from those in the FPTP election. Makes me wonder the extent to which people’s votes are currently distorted by the electoral system.

  3. Alec

    Hello from Aberdeen! I don’t think its clear yet what actual impact the tax hike will have especially with the price of oil so high. Most of the immediate impact will be felt in Aberdeen and nearby service centres but we are also a centre of expertise for the global oil/gas industry so again that may mute some of the impact. So I doubt whether it will have a huge impact nationally across Scotland on voting intention. Having said that, it does seem to me to add grist to the SNP mill about Westminster control over taxation in Scotland – it will be interesting to see how far it figures in the campaign.

  4. @Ben Foley – I’ve often wondered about that when reading projections of what would have happened if previous elections were conducted under AV.

    Apart from not being able to assess accurately how voters might change their behaviour, I’ve also long held that political parties would also change their own campaigning to reflect the need to position themselves for second and third round votes.

    In our own narrow partisan interests, I would expect to see various steps taken, possibly with attempts at some formal agreements, to secure second round backing from Green Party voters, but I would certainly expect manifestos from the main parties to contain nuggets that would appeal to more minority parties.

    In short, politics itself would change with a new voting system, which is the main reason why I’ll be backing AV.

  5. SSP are 4% in regionals which puts them 1% behind LD. I wonder what the chances are of LDs finishing sixth in the regionals in May?

  6. The North Sea issue is a live topic in the Aberdeen area – the local press rather hostile to the Budget move.

    Looking back to the 2007 campaign, the SNP never polled 40% at all during that campaign in a Yougov poll. As the campaign was coming to an end the frightners were being put on the electorate by the press that if the SNP would be elected, life as we know it would end. It didn’t and the press cannot do the same this time. Quite a lot would like the status quo to continue, they may not support Independence but would be happy for more of the same.

  7. It looks like it is going to be a LDem bloodbath in Scotland. Bizarrely that might make it impossible for Lab to form a stable govt as they wont have enough to make a coaltion.

    Having said that a Lab-Con coaltion would have enough seats. … Come on … where’s your sense of adventure … Hasn’t been tried yet … could work …

  8. Adrian,

    Did you watch the leadership debate? Goldie/Salmond got along quite well?

    I am a Labour Party member but I am hoping for an SNP victory in Holyrood.

  9. “As the [2007] campaign was coming to an end the frightners were being put on the electorate by the press that if the SNP would be elected, life as we know it would end.”

    Whereas at now, the frighteners are being put on the electorate by the SNP that if Labour were to be elected, and Iain Gray become FM, life as we know it would end.

  10. Labour’s vote is much better distributed which is why it achieves the higher seat count – the SNP vote is more evenly spread.

    Any bets on the SNP getting the higher vote share, but Labour ending up with most seats (maybe even just short of a majority?)

  11. Looks like Labour would have to find someone to rub along with in order to create what we would normally recognize as a stable coalition, yet there are problems hooking up with anyone else. Lab-Con would be interesting. Lab-LD-Green might work too. We’re going to see some strange bedfellows.

  12. Firstly regarding the oil tax issue I saw both tory and lib-dem spokesmen floundering about this on newsnight. I then heard a very competent Stewart Hosie taking chunks out of George Osborne in Westminster. I think this will play out well for the SNP as it affects their heartlands in the North East and they can spin it as anti-Scottish because any jobs going would mostly be here.

    On the latest polling I think a lot will depend on the distribution of the regional vote. Labour will likely poll well in Glasgow and the West Central Belt and other strongholds like Ayrshire. But in these areas they will have mopped up the majority of FPTP saets and so will not benefit from the regional list votes. They would need to poll better in places like the Highlands and North East and a lot will come down to where the disappearing LD vote ends up.

    Analysis of this in the last election showed it was evenly split between SNP and Labour – but I would think more likely to go to Labour in cities (Edinburgh and Aberdeen) and more likely to go to SNP in more rural areas (Argyll, Inverness, Lothians).

    I also note Ladbrokes have cut the odds on SNP from 7/2 to 7/4 – looks like a tight race – can’t wait!

  13. Notice no-one here is demanding an end to PR in Scotland and a move to FPTP “because it produces stronger governments”. i.e. a majority where none really exists. In Scotland, people now recognise the formation of coalition governments as being legitimate responses to how people vote and not a “betrayal” by some group or other.

    Holyrood’s politics are, in this respect at least, much more grown up than those at Westmnister.

  14. The low Lib Dem share of the vote in this poll seems to reflect a wider problem. Apparently they have failed to field candidates in at least two constituencies.

  15. Alec,

    “Just wondering if any Scottish posters have a view on the likely impact of the budget move on North Sea oil and gas taxation on the Scottish elections?”

    Yes, I have a view. I am of the opinion that this means curtains for the Lib Dems in the re-drawn Aberdeen South & North Kincardine constituency. The former Lib Dem leader Nicol Stephen, although retiring at this election, has made himself a laughing stock both locally and nationally.

    Under the new boundaries, the SNP only need a 3.7% swing to take it. In nearby Gordon in 2007 the LD to SNP swing was over 10%, and that was before the London Lib Dems committed hari kiri.

    On top of the post office closures and the petrol price rises, etc etc etc, we could seriously be looking at the Lib Dems only holding on to Shetland, Orkney, NE Fife, and perhaps Edinburgh West (although that looks decidedly dodgy too if you examine the 2010 Westminster result closely).

    Then add in the fact that the Scottish Lib Dems only have about 2000 members left, and are utterly skint, and, well, you get the picture.

    In fact, if you are a real Lib Dem pessimist, even NE Fife could be at risk.

  16. In the end, most of the discussion is academic as, in a close election, it is the ‘get-the-vote-out’ machine that matters. I predict that Labour will get the largest number of seats on the basis of a renewed enthusiasm amongst its members and supporters and the collapse of the Lib Dem vote which seems to have flowed mostly to Labour. I also think they will get the largest number of votes.
    The Conservatives will struggle to hold some of the constituencies, but will do okay in the regional pickup.
    The SNP will lose a fair number of constituencies back to Labour as the bounce from the Conference fades and the difficult decisions of governing have to be defended.
    As for Lib Dems – I cannot really gauge how bad it could be – it feels a bit like 1997 for the Tories when we didn’t really believe it could be so awful. We all know how that worked out.

  17. I personally hope that Labour win with a small majority of one or two MSPs and where a coalition with whats left of the Lib Dems would still mean a minority government.

  18. @Stuart Dickson

    Aberdeen S & NK might end up being SNP vs Lab fight with LDs in 3rd as Nicol Stephen had a large personal vote.

    I think the LDs might possibly hold Edinburgh W due to tactical voting from tories in Cramond and Davidsons Mains.

    Mike Rumbles might narrowly survive with the SNP in 2nd.

    Fife NE is the LDs safest mainland seat as the opposition is so split.

  19. @Alec

    ‘In short, politics itself would change with a new voting system, which is the main reason why I’ll be backing AV.’

    My view too. I am against the negative campaigning implicit in the 2nd party telling me that a vote for the third/fourth party is wasted because they can’t win here. Under AV a least that line of campaigning would be downgraded and parties would have to offer a positive message. The effect of the third party squeeze is to leave a false picture of the underlying support for certain parties in certain regions. The SE is not empty of Lab supporters nor is the NE empty of Tories. The tactical vote boosts the relative popularity of 1st and 2nd in any constituency over the Others.

    My other reason to support AV is that success under FPTP requires a critical mass leading ultimately to a two party system. The merger of the Libs and SDP was an attempt to acquire the critical mass needed to compete and that is under some pressure now. Both the two main parties in England are coalitions of unlikely bedfellows seeking power. I would hope that over decades a move away from FPTP would start the break up of these juggernauts into smaller units that more of us can vote for rather than large parties that we can vote against.

    BTW from previous thread. 3.85% fixed for 2 years with Tesco looks a safer haven.

  20. If you get in bed with the Tories you are get votes from Tories…and nobody else.

  21. Yes, the question here (as at westminister and elsewhere) is where the LD vote will go and hence who will pick up stray seats because their vote has collapsed. It’s not easy to predict and election night will be interesting. The result will be as before but probably with Labour largest not SNP. I wonder what happens if SNP and Labour end up with an equal number of seats?

  22. KEITHP – I can’t see it happening. The last election was as close to that as we will ever get. I think Labour will be clearly ahead this time. However, I just don’t know where a coalition will come from if Labour is far short of the 65 seats. It depends on the Greens doing really well as the Lib Dems are a toxic brand right now and I can’t see them in coalition with Labour at the moment. Who knows?

  23. The SNP have done a creditable job as the Scottish Government and proved that they are not the basket cases that the Unionists made them out to be pre 2007 (in fact Iain Gray and his team are the ones increasingly looking like the basket cases, I mean Richard Baker for Gods sake…). They have not been able to implement their full programme but that is minority Government for you. But at least they tried! Unlike both the Tories and the Lib Dems in England who ditched their programmes ASAP and played the “necessary under coalition” card as the excuse.

    It is more creditable for a Government with a watching brief to hold the fort and get on with the business of government and not push the ludicrous reform agendas that we see so often in Westminster and that eventually come to grief. Witness Thatcher and Blair. Those are, I think, change for the sake of change.

    Also if Gray wins people will doubtless be able to look back on the halcyon days of the SNP with fondness. And this will serve them and their independence agenda, and hence Scotland, well in future elections.

    Additionally the SNP do better in opposition (being an anti-establishment party by wanting to dissolve the Union) when they are not part of the establishment they want to change. I want them to get back to pressing for Independence and not worrying about the name of the replacement crossing for the Forth.

    I think also that Iain Gray will be an incompetent First Minister and his team of Andy Kerr and Richard Baker are second, if not third, rate and will do untold damage to the Labour brand when held up against Alex Salmond and his very competent team.

    Lastly if the SNP lose the election they will not be forced to implement the Tory cuts coming down the line and Labour will.

    So thinking about the longer game (even longer than Nick Clegg) the SNP should lose this election but win the next one.

  24. @ ‘Munguin’

    You basically seem to be implying that if the SNP get reelected there will be a funding crisis for local gvt etc. That’s not a good endorsement of the SNP!

  25. NE Fife very much at risk if Nats get organised it’s there for the taking. There are no signs of them however. I think Fife NATS are wasting their energies on the fruitless task of holding Glenrothes – They are much more likely to win in NEFife.

    I genuinely don’t see any constituencies on the mainland returning a lib-dem MSP – They may well be fourth in many that they hold already – Aberdeenshire West springs to mind – and possibly even NE Fife – It’s not Westminster and Iain Smith is no Ming ( I even voted for Ming – I think it’s unanimous here – seriously at next election he would win as an Independent – but night lose as a LIb-dem – if he carries on at all!!)

    These figures don’t make sense on regional poll. If anything more Labour votes normally spread out amongst greens and socialists than SNP – Something odd about the figures

  26. I am delighted that the LibDems are doing so badly in Scoitland and are likely to lose at least half the councils they control in England.

    Liberal activists are going to be incandescent and I agree with posters above that a challenge to Clegg (remember only 75 LibDem constituency parties requesting a leadership election are needed) an increasingly likely outcome.

  27. @Aleksander – my views entirely, from the opposite end of the spectrum though. Although no system is perfect, I’m hoping AV might help break down the obsession that all major parties have with a small number of swing voters in a small proportion of swing seats. This has greatly distorted policy making and materially damages politics by failing to represent large swathes of voters.

  28. @ David B

    “Liberal activists are going to be incandescent ”

    I think we’re mostly incandescent at the ceaseless scapegoating of our party in general and of Clegg in particular by both the media and the political establishment who’ll do anything they can to blame us for everything under the sun.

    Anyone with half a brain knows that (1) There was no practical alternative to the Westminster deal done last June. (2) A replacement leader who pulled the Lib Dems out of the coalition government before the job of dealing with Labour’s mess was completed would be committing the party to an even worse fate than awaits it in 2015.

    Besides, with one recent UK poll putting us on 16%, another on 13%, while there appears to be melt down in Scotland for local reasons, our level of support elsewhere is, weirdly, not bad under the circumstances.

  29. @Robert C

    “Anyone with half a brain knows that (1) There was no practical alternative to the Westminster deal done last June. (2) A replacement leader who pulled the Lib Dems out of the coalition government before the job of dealing with Labour’s mess was completed would be committing the party to an even worse fate than awaits it in 2015.”

    Yep. But most people with a full brain know that both of those statements are nonsense. (1) confidence and supply was perfectly OK; (2) a replacement leader who apologised for going along with Clegg and his like would have at least some chance of regaining a portion of the votes lost to Labour. Seeing the parliament is going to lose those voters pretty much permanently. The electorate is not going to forgive what is about to be inflicted on them.

  30. @robin

    “confidence and supply was perfectly OK”

    Not really. It wouln’t have worked well as government would struggle to get anything through. Neither would it have lasted for more than a year I’d have thought. Of all the options available, coalition was the least bad, A Con minority the next least and a rainbow coalition the worst. Certainly in terms of stable government and probably in terms of outcomes. Recovering from the deficit and debt is unpalatable, but it would taste just as bad no matter the colour of government.

  31. @ Robin

    Under confidence and supply, the Conservatives would have waited a short while until they could have called a second general election. With Labour and the Lib Dems bankrupt, they would have romped home to a majority with Ashcroft’s money shouting “We need firm government in a crisis”.

    h ttp://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/election-2010/7691881/General-Election-2010-Britain-to-go-to-polls-again-within-12-months-experts-say.html

    Let’s not have this pet “confidence and supply” theory warmed over again like some leftover stale old tripe.

    I’m sure everyone here has heard it time and time again and it doesn’t get any more convincing with repetition.

  32. @Colin Green

    “Not really. It wouln’t have worked well as government would struggle to get anything through.”

    And that would have been a bad thing because…?

    Yes it would have been a struggle. But that means everything would have been properly negotiated. And It would have been possible on occasion for the Tories to go to Labour for support on particular policy items. It would have been better for the country, and also better for the LDs.

    Recovering might be tough, but what is being done has nothing to do with that. The deficit is being used as cover for a hard-right wet dream, and you are right there, playing your part in pulling it off, so to speak.

  33. I notice the SNP are getting to put ‘Alex Salmond for First Minister’ on the regional ballot paper. This was particualry successful in mopping up list votes in the last election.

    Given that no other leader has such a strong personal appeal I think this could be another string in the SNP bow.

    On another note I would be interested in seeing the betting odds for specific constituencies – does anyone know if these are available?

  34. Robert C

    Under a S and C agreement – where they are guaranteed not to lose a confidence or supply vote as long as they stick to the agreement – what basis would they have had asking the Queen for a dissolution? The much lauded and studied New Zealand system includes S and C agreements and I think there is currently one in place.

  35. Keithp,

    It’s unlikely that Labour would go into a formal coalition with anyone, except MAYBE the Greens if the arithmetic is just right (e.g. Labour have 60-62 seats and the Greens have 4-6 seats).

    All the other possible coalition partners are unworkable-

    Lib Dems: as if the Liberals don’t have enough of a problem with coalitions! However, while I think that the Liberals would rather like such a coalition to soften their image a bit with the left, Labour are not touching that brand for at least another four years.

    Conservatives: no.

    SNP: no matter how much they agree, they’re the two big gangs in the grounds and so they cannot mix.

    Most likely Labour would have a stab at minority government, which would be hard because all the other parties would have an incentive to make their lives difficult. The SNP have only really managed because the Tories have calculated that “constructive opposition” was their best strategy. I don’t think the Tories would be so forgiving to a Labour minority government.

    Also, any Labour government would be caught between either good statesmanship (cool pragmatic negotiations with the coalition in London) and party orders (pick fights with the coalition). I don’t think we’re looking at an 80s Liverpool situation, but I wouldn’t be surprised if Scottish Labour make sacrifices for the sake of making life difficult for the coalition in 2015, even if the people falling on their swords are the Scottish people rather than Labour per se.

    This could be a good election for Labour to lose.

  36. I’m going to look carefully at tactical voting during this election. Who will suffer the most? The Tories? The Liberals? Labour?

    One advantage for the SNP is that there’s no passionate anti-SNP feeling in the way that there is passionate anti-Tory/Lib Dem feeling. On the other hand, I can imagine some people holding their noses in the constituency elections to make life hard on Labour.

  37. Under an C&S agreement, there would have been all the pain and blame of supporting a government making cuts without any of the benefits of having things like the £10,000 personal allowance and pupil premium.

    Labour would still be putting all of the blame for cuts on us, whatever the outcome.

    Also, being in government makes sure you have to have some media coverage and ability to make your case, rather than being denied any chance at all, as is usually the situation for the LDs between elections.

  38. Some Lib Dems may be happy to be in coalition with the Tories but this one is certainly not. The past 10 months will be a disaster for the Lib Dems in NE England come the local elections. LDs have formed an excellent council in Newcastle during the past 7 years recovering from many disastrous Labour years before that. However, through no fault of their own this is likely to come to an end come May.

    After the GE results I was in favour of sustaining a minority Tory or Labour government but only on issues which were not against our principles. I conceded that the situation re the bond markets required stable government and therefore reluctantly accepted going into coalition. However I did not, as my son says, agree to sell our souls and the decision to back the Tories on tuition fees, NHS reform, free schools etc is an anethma to me.

    I agree with Robert C that the media have treat us badly but we have not helped ourselves and imo the only option to save the party will be an autumn conference vote to replace Clegg

  39. Anthony – would you be able to advise us why this new methodology from yougov has increased the SNP and Labour vote – when in the most recent Scottish elections yougov overestimated the SNP and underestimated the Conservatives and Labour in 2007 and 2010? I fear that yougov are badly underestimating the Conservative scores and overestimating the Nationalists – yet nothing has been done about this for the last few elections? Indeed coudl you also be having ‘shy’ LibDem syndrome perchance? Jess.

  40. @ Peter Bell

    the only option to save the party will be an autumn conference vote to replace Clegg
    ___________________________________________

    You can only replace him as leader of your party. You cannot replace him as deputy PM or as an MP.

    All it needs for this Govt to survive is for 15 or so of the LD MP’s to stay loyal to the Coalition Government and the Govt cannot be removed.

  41. PETER BELL

    I am not a Liberal Democrat but I admire your candour and honesty.

    So many people I talk to (of many political persuasions and none) think that the Liberal Democrats are now interested in power at any price and Clegg, Cable and Alexander are in effect Tory stooges. This may well be a result of unfair media manipulation but that’s politics and that’s a free society.

    I think it is incredibly sad that all that campaigning, door stepping and generally effective local politicking (which dates back to the beginnings of Liberal resurgence after the Orpington by election in the early `1960s) is going to go to waste in many, many parts of the country. Clegg and Co are going to be seen as wreckers by many in their party who will be devastated after May 5th.

  42. @ Robert C

    One of your comments says:
    “I think we’re mostly incandescent at the ceaseless scapegoating of our party in general and of Clegg in particular by both the media and the political establishment who’ll do anything they can to blame us for everything under the sun.”

    Then a later comment says:
    “Also, being in government makes sure you have to have some media coverage and ability to make your case”.
    —————————————————-
    So which is it, Robert? Is media attention a good thing or a bad thing? Because, when it comes to the media, you don’t get to decide what they’ll cover or the slant they’ll put on it. Basically, you take what you get.
    8-)

  43. @John Fletcher

    “You can only replace him as leader of your party. You cannot replace him as deputy PM or as an MP.

    All it needs for this Govt to survive is for 15 or so of the LD MP’s to stay loyal to the Coalition Government and the Govt cannot be removed.”

    I realise this, but at least the party will be able to act as an independant party and may regain some of the electorate’s trust. In fact, in one sense it may be better if Clegg and Alexander remain in the government because it will make the split more obvious. However, I would doubt that Clegg will persuade 15 LDs to remain in government and I I will be surprised and very disappointed if Vince stayed.

  44. @ Peter Bell

    I think this is probably a conversation better held on Lib Dem Voice, but I do agree with you about the need to replace Clegg.

    However, I totally disagree about the timing. Do you think someone like Farron would be able handle the constant behind the scenes conflict and war that the current team under Clegg has to endure at the moment. Conflict is raging on everything from taxes and benefits to human rights and Europe. Charles Kennedy called Clegg’s role a “bed of nails” and it must be just that. No-one wants to make unpopular decisions, but Farron, Huhne or whoeever would have to do almost exactly the same under the circumstances. Or pull out of the Coalition and be annihilated immediately rather than in five years time.

    Our public finances are in an appalling mess and cuts have to be made. Labour absolutely rained money down on certain regions creating areas of unsustainable (65% plus) dependence on the public sector.

    A new leader while we remain in government is not going to help us win local elections, but pulling out of the coalition now would mean none of our policies get enacted nationally at all – in the next five years or in the next five decades.

  45. @ Amberstar

    You’re right, media coverage is a two edged sword. In terms of newspapers, both sides are out to get us, particularly the Telegraph.

    On the BBC at least we get to put our case, although their coverage is desperately slanted sometimes. E.g. on the EMA, where they invited the Principal of Newham College on to slag its replacement off as if he was some kind of neutral expert teacher figure, when in fact he is a member of the Socialist Education Association, a fact they carefully failed to mention. They also failed to mention that a replacement to the EMA was always planned, a key LD policy, presenting it as a “climb down”.

    They also give continual and uncritical prominence to “cuts could mean…” stories, almost all of which are scare stories promoted by vested interests. e.g. today’s story about how according to one police authority almost all police staff are “front line” therefore, hey presto, any cuts at all are supposed to result in “front line” job losses.

    So yes, sometimes we do get to make our case, but very rarely. Most coverage of the LDs is negative and always has been because of the vested interests at large in our society – greedy, rich media owners on one side and trade unions and those dependent on the public sector on the other.

  46. No comments about YouGov weighting?

  47. @ Peter Bell

    However, I would doubt that Clegg will persuade 15 LDs to remain in government and I I will be surprised and very disappointed if Vince stayed.

    ______________________________________________

    Glegg/Cameron only has to find a few (Orange Bookers?) who are currently ministers and do not want to loose the perks of office and the adrenaline of Power. If their majorities are slim and they are likely to loose their seats at the next election anyway what have they to gain by leaving the government. Remember there are more than 20 LD ministers (I think).

    It could be a nightmare for the LD’s. Those who stay loyal to the Govt stay sitting on he Government benches. The remainder cross the floor. The LD’s end up a split party.

    Even if only a few LD MP’s stay loyal the Government could go on as a minority Government. The LD’s are in no state to fight a GE and Lab are broke.

    Most of the tough legistlation has already been pushed through so there would be little need to bring forward contentious legistlation. To get the Govt out you would need
    vote of no confidence. Meanwhile they could just “Administer”

  48. @ John fletcher

    “Most of the tough legistlation has already been pushed through so there would be little need to bring forward contentious legistlation. ”

    Correct me if I am wrong, but I believe that there are still votes to be taken on the NHS (certainly in the Lords) and there is nothing more contentious than the NHS. If Tory privatisation goes through then my LD membership goes out of the window. This is one LD with principles.

  49. @ Peter Bell.

    Correct me if I am wrong, but I believe that there are still votes to be taken on the NHS
    _____________________________________________

    Your conference isn’t ill Autumn. Plenty of Time. :D

  50. John Roddy:

    The outcome you suggest is entirely possible.

    Stewart Dickson/A Brown

    There is an interesting analysis on Newsnet Scotland on where lost LibDem votes might go. They seem certain to lose two uncompensated constituencies in Highland where incumbents have a huge or significant personal vote but the SNP may see their gains offset to the benefit of the Greens (very likely) and maybe Labour.

    Munguin

    Projections that don’t take account of compensation on the list are useless. The SNP may very well win.

    Alex Salmond is good, but only if you compare him with other party leaders. Some of his ministers are much more impressive vote-gatherers. The national media can’t see it (or don’t want to) but readers of local and trade press do.

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