The weekly YouGov/Sunday Times poll is out and has topline figures of CON 37%, LAB 41%, LDEM 9%. Four points is a slightly lower Labour lead than we’ve seen from YouGov lately, but nothing that couldn’t easily be just normal random variation.

Meanwhile the figures for the latest YouGov/Scotsman on Sunday poll have briefly appeared on the Scotsman’s website, and then disappeared again! While they were there they apparently showed the SNP ahead in both the constituency and the regional vote. I don’t actually have the figures, so can’t confirm if these are correct, but I’ll update properly on both the Sunday Times and the Scotsman on Sunday polls tomorrow.


59 Responses to “YouGov/Sunday Times – 37/41/9”

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  1. Any idea on whether the YouGov/ST’s poll has the AV voting intention figures?

  2. There has been a slow drift away from Lab to Con over recent weeks in YouGov polls, I do not think that this is an aberration.

    On the door today I still found a lot of anger with the Coalition, but it was not being translated into support for us – the largest group being Undecided.

    I wonder if people are waiting to see if the economy does turn +ve

    Also we are still not seen to be ready

  3. A sense of disappointment in Labour ranks I would think with this poll and the apparent situation in Scotland.

    Tory support has been pretty resilient considering the news agenda and what I would describe as a generally flaky performance. There are few ministers appearing in control and competent, and Cameron keeps tripping himself up with inaccuracies and wrong headed claims, but I guess there hasn’t been enough distance from their defeat for Labour to really capitalise on any government slip ups. They still have their penance to serve before widespread rehabilitation occurs.

    One thing does surprise me (actually, it doesn’t really, but I had hoped that Cameron’s claims to want better government behaviour actually meant something) is the spate of officially sanction lies and distortions coming from various departments. The latest is Working Together for Stronger NHS, a leaflet on the Dept of Health website, so supposedly non political. It makes claims that are completely wrong, with no basis in fact and is deeply biased.

    This just isn’t the sort of thing that should be done on civil service time and something Cameron got very heated about in opposition. I suppose he’s a politician, so I really shouldn’t be too surprised. Like Gordon Brown and Tony Blair before him, he’ll have a certain amount of time available to him when people still believe what he says, and then they’ll believe nothing at all, whether true or not. He’s just playing a more cavalier hand with the truth I guess.

  4. @Eric Goodyer
    Of course Labour could do better, and voters maybe expect more from them, but the fact remains that in no other country among those that have had GE between Oct. 2009 and March 2011 the main opposition party does not seem to take the lead. Some examples: The Netherlands (GE 2010): Labour’ score is now estimated at 15-17%, whilst a year ago it was 19.5. Greece (GE Oct. 09): Conservative ND is now estimated at 27-28% (33,5% in 09, already an all-time-low), despite the decreasing of governing socialist’s vote due to austerity measures. In Hungary and Sweden (GE 2010), socialists only marginally ameliorate their scores, but are still far from overtaking the right-wing incumbent parties. The only exception seems to be Slovakia, where the socialists have jumped in the polls from 35% last year to 44%, but there the were already the first party back then, and lost power only because their allies collapsed, which was not the case of Labour, that have had one of its most deceiving results (29%). So being constantly around or above 40% is an exploit that must not be underestimated – of course I agree that they can do better and we all wish for it.

  5. As a Labour Party member I argued long and hard that Ed Miliband could not profit from public anger at the coalition government.I expected Labour to move ahead in the polls , as they did with Neil Kinnock at the helm , but winning elections requires a direct shift in votes from the Tories to Labour .I don’t believe Ed Miliband can deliver this and I believe this is born out by the polls.

    Naturally I hope I am wrong.

  6. Correction: in NO other country… the main opposition party DOES seem…. (erroneous repetition of the negative, perhaps mentally translating from French: dans AUCUN autre pays… l’opposition NE parait pas en mesure de…, which my late uncle, who taught me English when I was a kid, strictly forbade me to do).

  7. Some odd things on the ComRes tables at http://ht.ly/4BKjg.

    Pages 16-18 show a weighted base of 1,533 (implying VI of 39/35/10 – as per the headlines), but pages 19-21, apparently with the same question, filtering and weighting, show a weighted base of 1,472, implying VI of 41/37/11.

    Mysteriously, the weighted hole-counts for the other parties (UKIP, Greens etc) drop substantially in the second set of tables, whereas they are the same for the three main parties.

  8. The Labour momentum certainly seems to have stalled-if not actually reversed.

    I still don’t understand why .

  9. Labour have gained this advantage, by just being in opposition. Who ever was in goverment would lose support from the amount of unpopular decesions they would had to have made. All this talk of labour have gained all this support in such little time, is because they are seen as opposition to the cuts. It would be exactly the same for Tories if we still had a labour goverment.

    If we had a situtation where the goverment was not taxing more and having to cut, i doubt we would be seeing their support falling and labour over 40% When labour came to power in 1997 they didnt need to make the cuts The coalition is making, which is why their support stayed strong for a longer period.

    Sorry this was on composed on my phone.

  10. @Eric Goodyer

    Interesting.

    I’ve been out all day and have been confronted by a wall of- sometimes amazingly pejorative- anti Lib Dem sentiment. Particularly when I have argued in favour of AV.

    It really does look like the Lib Dems are going to get shelacked in Cleggs ‘home’ town. Of course I use that word advisedly as he was parachuted into the seat and spends most of his time at one of his several other homes nowhere near Sheffield- and did so before becoming DPM.

    I did another bout earlier this week in rural Notts and there I did not come across much pro Labour sentiment. Moreover an anger towards Cameron from traditional Tories over a variety of traditional Tory agenda items- and a warming towards UKIP.

    As for Labour ‘not being ready’? Well that’s something no one will ever be able to quantify!

    The bottom line is this: in a two party system and with FPTP Labour just needs a small lead over the Tories for a majority of 1 in the 600 seat UK parliament . If the Lib Dems don’t pull the plug on the coalition they have zero chance of reclaiming some of the 60-70% of their 2010 vote who have upped sticks (a vote they had held onto pretty consistently from the early noughties). Most of which has transferred itself to EdM’s Labour- most of that having been Labour previously before switching away from Blairite Labour to the Lib Dems over the last decade. This small lead calculus is the case whether the economy picks up or not- by which I mean, significant reductions in unemployment, significant increases in household income and low credit interest/ mortgage rates- the only three economic policy outcomes that most non-combatants are concerned with.

    We are in a totally different scenario to what we have seen since before 1981: I would anticipate- subject to events laden fluctuations and poll methodologies (and the occasional rogue)- Labour and the Tories to be 3-6% apart all the way till the next election and into and throughout that GE’s campaign. I for one am not expecting 10% – 15% leads (not ones that last longer than a week anyway). The current dynamic just simply does not suggest that as a possibility- the country is split down the middle. WE have become a little like the States in that regard. Ergo, the current scenario- and electoral arithmetic and psephological context– is not ‘clawback’ territory IMO. Nor is it a split centre left scenario either that can let the Tories through to govern on their own.

    Look for- in the English locals- noteworthy gains for Labour and worse losses for the Lib Dems than even Mark pack has been trying to tactically talk up. Look also for some peeling away of the Tory vote rightwards.

    Plus- if my experiences this week in urban South Yorkshire and rural north Notts are any guide- quite a big win for ‘NO’’ on a switch to AV.

  11. @ Anthony

    I’m glad you’re feeling better. Being under the weather is no fun.

    I’m not surprised that No has taken the lead in the referendum campaign. It seems like Labour has a lead but with weekly fluctuations from a mid single digits to low double digits. Whether polls are just off due to sampling error or whether people are continually changing their minds, it’s not entirely clear.

  12. Constituency SNP 40 : Lab 37 : Con 11 : LD 8

    List SNP 35 : Lab 33 : Con 12 : LD 7 : Grn 6

    Projection by Curtice

    SNP 55 : Lab 49 : Con 14 : LD 6 : Green 5

    “Salmond’s appeal among voters is also strengthening, according to the poll, with the number of people who would choose him as First Minister over Gray increasing from 48 per cent to 52 per cent over the last fortnight. The number who back Gray has fallen from 33 per cent to 27 per cent.”

  13. It seems as though there’s a “election effect” with the SNP. Whenever there’s a Holyrood election, the greater exposure seems to give them a lot of momentum.

    It looks like we’re looking at another 4 years of SNP government, with Big Eck manuevering with the Lib Dems and the Tories to get bits and pieces of his programme through. Until Labour can get on the Lib Dems good side or get the Greens on board, it will be very hard for them to return to government at Holyrood.

    As for Ed Miliband, I think he’s looking at a mixed night on the 5th: good news from Wales and England, bad news from Scotland. It’s a far cry from Labour’s momentum in 1980, 1989 or 1994, when they seemed like the obvious next party of government, but two of those three examples show that early performance is no guarantee of ultimate success.

  14. The SoS report which was dropped is unchanged in its new form – except for additional comments from other party leaders.

  15. @Bill Patrick

    It looks like we’re looking at another 4 years of SNP government, with Big Eck manuevering with the Lib Dems and the Tories to get bits and pieces of his programme through. Until Labour can get on the Lib Dems good side or get the Greens on board, it will be very hard for them to return to government at Holyrood
    ___________

    If the SNP do win them this term will be for 5 years.
    I’m not sure if the Lib Dems will be in any position to form anything with Labour, they look like loosing up to 5 or possibly even 6 seats to the SNP and loosing a couple to Labour.

  16. In addition to the main poll article, there’s a 4-screen opinion piece, also by Barnes worth a look.

    http://scotlandonsunday.scotsman.com/opinion/Eddie-Barnes-and-Tom-Peterkin.6753094.jp

  17. Cyberkarst
    You’re absolutely right about the ComRes poll. There are 59 more “Others” in one table than the other with the main parties’ totals being unchanged. And it seems that the 2nd table is a duplicate of the first but for this change. Clearly one set of tables is a duplicate with some corrections from the other, so the question is whether ComRes have used the right one for their headline.

  18. Thanks BZ

  19. @Eric Goodyer

    “There has been a slow drift away from Lab to Con over recent weeks in YouGov polls, I do not think that this is an aberration.”

    Er, no. Apart from brief blips in either direction depending on the news story of the moment, the polls have been completely flat for at least the last 2 months, possibly longer.

    @Colin

    “The Labour momentum certainly seems to have stalled-if not actually reversed. I still don’t understand why.”

    What’s the problem? Labour has picked up the betrayed LibDems and the Tory honeymoon effect has worn off. Apart from that, government policies have only just started to have an effect. The real shift was always going to be seen after the cuts really started to bite.

  20. The SOS poll is bad for Labour but that’s mostly down to a very weak leader. Gray makes John Major look like John F Kennedy.

    Salmond is hugely respected in Scotland, and across the UK, as a man of the people communicator who can take on Paxman and win.

    Labour supporters shouldn’t be concerned, however, about the YouGov poll. On the running average, a GE tomorrow would give Milliband a majority of 86.

    It’s incompetence I think that will undermine the Tories and the LibDems ultimately. Voters don’t care about arrogance, lies or even callousness. They do care deeply that the country is competently run.

    The current Tories aren’t the children of Thatcher. They are the acolytes of Major.

    Sorry for mentioning Major twice. But we do seem to have moved into an era horribly reminiscent of 1992 and later: a shambolic war, an economic crisis, incompetent leadership and a government deeply divided…

  21. SoS are obviously milking the poll for all it’s worth with a leader: Salmond turns the tide ending with:

    But the hard, unforgiving truth in these findings is that the more people get to know Gray, the less they want him as first minister. Not only that, he lags behind Salmond on key personality traits such as trust, honesty and likeability. Maybe deciding to fight Thatcher not Salmond wasn’t such a good idea.

    One can only presume that any bad news in the poll detail is being saved for Monday’s Hootsmon, in best Pte. Frazer mode.

  22. 2011 sees record taxes for UK citizens… Based upon 2004 taxation [inflation adjusted] Goerge Osborne is set to recoup £36bn in extra taxes this year..

    2.5% VAT
    1% NI [er]
    0.5% NI [ee]
    Excise/Duties/Oil/Bank etc.

    Make little mistake, this is a Taxing Chancellor [and hurray for that].

    In addition in Oct. ’10 week 3, the CoE said in the CSR he wud spend c.£700bn this financial year.

    But in Mar. ’11 week 4, he added c.£10bn to that.

    Given that in the intermittent period he undershot borrowing, this cannot be put down to debt interest payments.

    George Osborne opted for a plan B..

    with £36bn+ in extra taxes [real terms since 2004]
    + £10bn extra spending that CSR Oct ’10

    George Osborne’s method of cutting the deficit is different to what he protrays..

    He fantasises about being viewed as a low tax, low spend chancellor

    In reality he spends and taxes.

    Personally, that helps me sleep better at night. So there is zero criticism towards GO. It would have been nice if VAT inc. was Income Tax inc. but its in the past, I’ll deal with it.

    Now, cue a long list of vitriol and rebuttals- they’ll mostly go unanswered. I print this data here simply to inform.

    If you disagree bravo, all well and good. There is as with all things equal chance I am right, as there is i am wrong.

    Anthony’s lurkers, browsers, readers simply might gain something from an alternative point of view so this post was for them.

    Before i depart.. unemployment dropped by 17k this week. Inflation dropped by c.9%. Employment climbed 156k. All of these matters lower borrowing and low debt interest. The lower social security spending also. As with ’09 forecasts and ’10 (a) forecasts and ’10 (b) forecasts, this year will also prove to be a modest year’s forecasts. Thus the deifict instead of being the forecast c.£175bn that AD said in his red book ’09, this will be c.£118bn [my estimates] for ’11-12.

    All of that will have been achieved by

    a) increased taxation
    b) record spending raw figures
    c) 0.6% cuts real terms
    d) £10bn extra spending that forecast in the CSR for 11-12
    e) £36bn taxation extra over and above what 2004 levels where [inflation adjusted].

    I humbly submit these to Anthony’s forum in the hope that one lurker may find them interesting. :) :) :)

    Apologies for typos- I am dyslexic :(

  23. Barbazenzero

    That’s a very cutting end to the SoS editorial

    “Maybe deciding to fight Thatcher not Salmond wasn’t such a good idea.”

    A masterpiece of Scottish understatement. :-)

  24. OLDNAT
    A masterpiece of Scottish understatement.

    Quite so. Initially I planned to quote just that last sentence, before deciding the whole para is needed to set the context.

  25. I’m sure Labour will extend it’s lead at some point – that may not arrive for some time though.

    They will gain about 1,500 council seats this May.

    The real question is – what will Ed Balls look like in a few years time if the economy is growing nicely, and in a balanced way?

    Con gain Morley and Outwood,
    Wakefield.

  26. Here are the changes on the last YouGov:

    YouGov/Scotland on Sunday
    (+/- change on YouGov 25-28 March)

    Constituency vote (FPTP)

    SNP 40% (n/c)
    Lab 37% (-2)
    Con 11% (n/c)
    LD 8% (+3)

    Regional vote (AMS)

    SNP 35% (+3)
    Lab 33% (-6)
    Con 12% (n/c)
    LD 7% (+2)

    http://scottish-independence.blogspot.com/2011/04/snp-ahead-with-yougov.html

  27. John Curtice seat projection
    (+/- change from notional 2007 seats after boundary changes)

    SNP 55 seats (+9)
    Lab 49 seats (+5)
    Con 14 seats (-6)
    LD 6 seats (-11)
    Grn 5 seats (+4)
    (oth 0 seats (-1))

    Total = 129 seats

    65 seats are required to form a Majority government

    SNP + LD + Grn = 66 seats

    Unionist grand alliance: Lab + Con + LD = 69 seats

  28. Bad news for UKPR’s very own Barney Crockett.

    Ominously for Labour, Victor Chandler have suspended their Aberdeen Donside prices. Over at Paddy Power they are pricing this newly-drawn marginal (notional SNP maj over Lab = 3,551) as if it were a safe SNP seat!

    Aberdeen Donside (Paddy Power)

    Brian Adam (SNP) 1/9
    Barney Crockett (Lab) 4/1
    Millie McLeod (LD) 100/1
    Ross Thomson (Con) 150/1

  29. Hmmm… now VC have also suspended another Lab/SNP marginal: Airdrie & Shotts. Is money going on a shock Alex Neil victory in Labour’s Lanarkshire heartland?? Looks like it.

    We live in interesting times.

  30. @The Green Benches

    I totally agree with you but as an economic libertarian I am very unhappy with the policy. It is also why I said I felt this government was left wing in a post the other day on a previous thread. My only hope is that the economic policy is so apparently successful that we get a truly right wing Tory government elected in 2015 which really does reduce the size of the state. If we do not, longer term this country is bankrupt!

  31. The O Howard,

    Thanks. :)

  32. Anthony

    One small typo in your header when you are entering the SoS numbers:

    Your Scotsman on Sunday should read Scotland on Sunday.

  33. @ Stuart Dickson

    “Bad news for UKPR’s very own Barney Crockett.

    Ominously for Labour, Victor Chandler have suspended their Aberdeen Donside prices. Over at Paddy Power they are pricing this newly-drawn marginal (notional SNP maj over Lab = 3,551) as if it were a safe SNP seat!

    Aberdeen Donside (Paddy Power)

    Brian Adam (SNP) 1/9
    Barney Crockett (Lab) 4/1
    Millie McLeod (LD) 100/1
    Ross Thomson (Con) 150/1”

    Awwww…don’t tell me that. I’m rooting for Barney. :(

    I know local elections are a relatively new thing in the United Kingdom. I don’t get why they’re conducted on a partisan basis though.

  34. Anthony, or someone else if you know…

    I am looking at the ABC1 C2DE Social Grade Classification.

    Although it is not defined by occupation alone, I am interested in what grade we might typically expect to find a “Dental Receptionist”.

    For clarification, I am not interested in the NS-SEC breakdown, simply the NRS method, since the latter is about ‘grade’ and not ‘class’.

    Thanks.

  35. @ Old Nat

    “‘Maybe deciding to fight Thatcher not Salmond wasn’t such a good idea.’

    A masterpiece of Scottish understatement.”

    Another way in which you’re just like the English and belong with them! (The love of making extreme understatements!).

    Yeah, I think whoever made that strategy for them ought to have their head examined. You cannot campaign on non-existent issues in an election (or if you do, you have to be like Dubya and come up with a sophisticated way to turn non-issues into issues and spend massive amounts of money to do it). If you do that, you’re going to lose. Thatcher is a non-existent issue. Cameron is really a non-existent issue too. Because even though voters may not like them, the SNP and Labour are both pretty unanimous in their dislike of them.

    This reminds me of a primary campaign for State Controller my junior year of high school. One candidate ran ads in the race labeling himself as “the pro-choice Democrat in the race.” This would make you think that his opponent was anti-choice and cause concern. Well ironically enough one day I came across volunteers for his opponent who were tabling. I was too young to vote but nevertheless interested (and planning to fill out my mom’s ballot), I asked about the abortion issue. The campaign volunteers for the opponent reassured me that he was pro choice and expressed confusion over the ads. The opponent won the primary. :)

  36. STUART DICKSON
    John Curtice seat projection

    Re the prof’s projection, I’d say he’s probably underestimating Margo and also Gorgeous George’s probability of taking a Glasgow list seat. That’s one where his Daily Record and Sunday Mail readership may support him. I’d be interested in your views, but would guess that Margo would reduce Labour’s list seats by one while GG would likely take a list seat from the SNP.

    Bizarrely, given their usual fare, the Sunday Mail have a positive SNP story today: SNP deputy leader Nicola Sturgeon to the rescue as OAP collapses.

  37. @ Old Nat (from two previous threads but relevant to this one)

    “I’ve argued for a long time that the Scottish election would be decided on the prism through which Scots looked at the election.

    In UK terms, Scotland votes massively Labour (or more accurately, the party that seems to have a chance of keeping the Tories out at Westminster).

    The early polls were taken when Scots were still looking at all politics through a UK prism. Labour have tried to keep that mindset.

    It isn’t a “Labour collapse”. If the UK had a General Election soon, the Scots would probably vote the same way as last time.

    All that has happened is that Scots have started focussing on politics through a Scottish prism. That’s the mindset the SNP wanted to create.”

    And you were absolutely right.

    “I don’t imagine it’s that different from Americans voting differently in State and Federal elections.”

    It isn’t and it is. Ticket splititng usually happens at a federal level too. After an incumbent is no longer a freshman, they’re very hard to get out of office. What can happen is that fluke elections and coattails can pull in surprise candidates to victory who never leave. So in this case, disenchantment with Tony Blair and fatigue with Labour brought the SNP to power in 2007. Well Blair disenchantment and Labour fatigue have left but that doesn’t mean Labour will return to power in Holyrood.

    This reminds me though of election day 06′ in Virginia where I stood out for hours handing out “Democratic Sample ballots” to any voter who was interested at this traditionally Republican precinct while volunteering for Jim Webb. At the time, I kinda thought it was a silly exercise. But now that I look back on it, it was probably quite useful. Most of the whites who were showing up to vote were grabbing the Republican sample ballots. Most of the blacks and Asians who were showing up to vote were grabbing the Democratic sample ballots. But then, there were whites grabbing sample ballots from me but they all had European or foreign accents (or some were young voters). Now that I think about it, in most European nations, you have Parliamentary systems where you only get one single vote. You don’t have multiple offices to vote on (or even if you do, you have separate elections for them like in France). If you were a naturalized citizen from the UK and you wanted to vote Democratic but you were used to just going to the polls and voting either Labour or Lib Dem (or SNP), you might see a whole bunch of different options and be confused or you might just see the first page of the ballot, vote once and leave.

  38. An interesting study in today’s “Journal du Dimanche” by Frederic Darbi, director of Ifop Institute, comparing the popularity figures for French presidents during the 5th Republic (post-1958) one year after their seeking reelection. Both Mitterand and Chirac garnered 56% of favorable opinions in 1987 and 2011 respectively, and they have both been reelected in 1988 and 2002 respectively. On the contrary, Valery Giscard d’Estaing, whose popularity was “just” 45% in 1980, failed to get re-elected in 1981. Now the popularity of President Sarkozy, exactly one year before 2012 PE, is 28%. So, according to Darbi, his chances of being reelected are close to zero, and it is not even certain that he will make it to the second round. All this despite France’s success in Ivory Coast and its active involvement in Libya, which could, in theory, have boosted Sarkozy’s popularity. As for the other pillar of Eurozone, Germany, there is now a remarkable convergence of all major institutes: Red+Green are at 47-51% (average 49.5%), Christian Democrats at 30-34 (average 32) and Liberals at 4%, despite their leadership change, so out of next Parliament. The only unclear point is which of the two major opposition parties is leading the other. Emnid and Forsa give a slight advantage to the Greens, FW and ID to the Reds, average is 25 Reds, 24.5 Greens, although, IMO, Reds will finally win this “race” because the Green vote is softer.
    Finally, in my native Greece, the estimated VI by Public Issue is today as follows: PASOK (Socialists) 33,5 (-10.5 from last GE/2009), ND (center-right) 27 (-6.5), Communist Party 12 (+4.5), LAOS (far right) 8.5 (+3), SYRIZA (Rad. Left) 5.5 (+1), Greens 3 (+0,5), Democratic Left 3 (new party), Dem. Alliance (center) 2.5 (new party). In a scenario like this, the seats would be 141 PASOK, 73 ND, 32 Communists, 23 LAOS, 15 SYRIZA, 8 Green, 8 DL., so no OM for PASOK, but a PASOK-Green-DL majority of 14 and a clear tendency towards “balkanization”.

  39. Correction: 3d line, BEFORE seeking reelection

  40. @ Barbazenzero

    “Re the prof’s projection, I’d say he’s probably underestimating Margo and also Gorgeous George’s probability of taking a Glasgow list seat. That’s one where his Daily Record and Sunday Mail readership may support him. I’d be interested in your views, but would guess that Margo would reduce Labour’s list seats by one while GG would likely take a list seat from the SNP.”

    I thought Margo MacDonald wasn’t running for reelection (or is there a different Margo?). She’s a fascinating political figure either way.

    Old Nat partly disagrees with me but I think this woman was the American version of Margo MacDonald.

    h ttp://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/story/2007/12/17/ST2007121702276.html

  41. SocLib,

    “I thought Margo MacDonald wasn’t running for reelection”

    She wasn’t going to, but then she changed her mind. Tis a woman’s prerogative you know.

    I agree with Barbazenzero regarding Macdonald (Lothians) and Galloway (Glasgow). I have little time for MM myself, and I absolutely detest GG for reasons which I would be unwise to publish on a public forum. He is known to sue for defamation, but what I know about the man is 100% true, and 100% replusive.

  42. SOCALLIBERAL
    I thought Margo MacDonald wasn’t running for reelection (or is there a different Margo?). She’s a fascinating political figure either way.

    Stuart is right. She’s standing on the Lothian list

    STUART DICKSON

    We’re in 100% agreement re Galloway. I’m more ambivalent re Margo, but think it a pity she was never able to kiss and make up properly with the SNP.

  43. Barb,

    Margo’s fall out was not with the SNP per se. Her fall out was with certain key high heid yins. Most especially Nicola Sturgeon.

    It is a shame that hurt egos play such a decisive roll sometimes, but we are all only human.

  44. @Stuart Dickson

    Your “unionist grand alliance” is a non-starter. Far more likely, given the mood music, would seem to be

    SNP + Con = 69 seats.

    On the betting front:

    Donside had been an arbitrage opportunity for over a week so some movement in the market there was bound to occur. It doesn’t indicate that anything’s moved on the ground, just that dozy Chandlers have finally woken up after P Power adjusted their odds long ago. What is of more significance this morning is Chandlers shortening of SNP odds in some other seats.

    It’s not all good news for the SNP. After a period of reflection, Chandler’s have reinstated the SNP in Orkney at 16/1, so maybe we were reading too much into the earlier suspension there.

  45. For Labour supporters wishing to place a bet that keeps the head in line with the heart, the one that appeals most at the moment is in Wales:

    Christine Gwyther 4/9 on with Chandlers to retake Carmarthan West where the Conservatives are defending a majority of just 0.4%. Nationally in Wales, the Lab constituency vote share is 17% up on 2007 according to the latest YouGov. New incumbancy effects ain’t going to stop that one.

  46. Can only take a minute away from campaigning but suffice to say, “Don’t panic. Don’t panic.” On this projection, Labour have more votes and seats than last time, the difference from the last Yougov is small and at this stage last time Labour were, if memory serves, a long way behind. So it is still all to play for.

  47. On the questions of why Lab lead is not growing or has stalled or is reducing…

    The Cons have done nothing ‘wrong’ since the GE. Indeed, DC has done IMO quite well as PM. Yes, there are increasing signs he isn’t quite on top of accuracy of facts and figures, but joe public is willing to forgive these ‘errors’ as meaningless or even necessary to the political point being made. DC also has political nous, and has IMO played his hand well.
    Playing on immigration (and social security scroungers) this last week has played well with joe public too.

    Lab continue to do penance. Joe public are repeatedly reminded that Lab caused the deficit and massive immigration and are therefore to blame for the current cuts and social problems. Breaking away from this association in the public’s mind will be difficult for Lab.

    So, overall, a 4-6% or so lead seems good for now. Indeed, if this were the lead going into a GE I would be content.

    My only concern is whether EM is ‘attractive’ enough for a GE campaign. Although I think he is not as ‘ugly’ as Foot or Kinnock EM does not need to continue improving his presentation skills.

  48. I’m an eejit

    “Although I think he is not as ‘ugly’ as Foot or Kinnock EM does not need to continue improving his presentation skills” should read

    Although I think he is not as ‘ugly’ as Foot or Kinnock EM does need to continue improving his presentation skills.

  49. Anthony has a new thread up on the Scottish stuff

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