ComRes has released a new poll on the AV referendum commissioned by the NO2AV campaign. Topline figures, weighted by likelihood to vote in the referendum and excluding don’t knows have the NO campaign ahead by 60% to 40%, the biggest lead the NO campaign have recorded so far.

I always urge some caution in polls commissioned by the campaigns themselves – but in this particular case the tables appear wholly and entirely above board. It is a standard survey asking how likely people are to vote, and then asking them the bare, unadorned referendum question. Note that the regular ComRes polls on AV for the Independent on Sunday are carried out online, so this is the first recent ComRes telephone survey on AV.

There is also a new poll by a company called ICD Research in the New Statesman, which shows NO ahead by 14 points: NO 53%, YES 39%, undecided 9% (repercentaged to exclude don’t knows it would be a 16 point lead for NO).

I’m not aware of any previously published political polling by ICD, but it appears to have been an online poll, weighted by age, gender and region but not politically. Both the ICD and ComRes polls were conducted over last weekend, so both slightly predate the YouGov/Sun poll conducted early this week.


413 Responses to “Two new polls show NO campaign well ahead”

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  1. It is looking all but over for ‘Yes’…..

    I guess that the question now becomes: ‘how big a “no” will destabilise the Lib Dem activists and members’ such that Huhne and Farron get their chance later in the summer.

    I’d say Clegg is safe even with a double digit defeat- as long as the first digit does not begin with a ‘2’ or above.

    But an utterly bungled campaign by ‘yes’: though if you were balanced you might also say that the ‘yes’ campaign was doomed the day of the Downing street joint press conference.

    In retrospect a sunny day for DC only!

  2. I find the AV polling particularly interesting – the Yes campaign were pointing out recently that polling may be unreliable due to hard-to-predict regional differences. Is there any kind of case study of referendum polls which were wildly inaccurate?

    For example, turnout in Scotland (which is more pro-AV) is likely to be much higher – how will this impact the result if turnout in England is as low as feared? (I hear the figure of 15% bandied around quite a lot, not sure where this came from). I know some Tory MP’s were complaining that ‘Scottish voters may decide the outcome of the referendum’.

    It also strikes me as interesting that despite widespread apathy regarding the poll, and predictions of extremely low turnout, the polls don’t show this at all, with only a small number of people saying they will not vote. How can this be explained? And how might it impact on the accuracy of the polls come May 5th?

  3. @Rob S
    Without for one minute disagreeing that a “No” vote will bring pressure to bear on Clegg, I don’t think that the margin itself will make that much difference. More significant will be the extent of the LD losses in the local/WA/Holyrood elections, which will surely be disasterous for them. If so I’ll be very surprised if we don’t see a leadership challenge in the next 12 months. That said, on this question, the views that matter are those of the LD posters on here, not those of us reds.

  4. The irony is this could be a pyrrhic victory for the Conservatives. The No campaign has concentrated their efforts on a Nick Clegg hate campaign. Okay, No2AV isn’t the Conservative party but the Conservative party could easily have asked them to concentrate more on the arguments and less on their coalition partners and they clear haven’t. Now people on the Yes campaign are retaliating by suggesting a Yes vote will give the conservatives a kicking because no-one likes the Tories.

    However, before anyone gets too excited about a No vote ending the coalition, neither party is going to pull out because it would be political suicide at this stage. In any case, a Yes vote will cause just as much outrage within the coalition as a no vote will now. Instead, I fear we are in for four years of a dysfunctional government with ministers at each other’s throats.

    And it was all completely avoidable.

  5. We haven’t seen many big leads for yes and certainly not recently: when they do get a lead it is quite small.
    Whereas the no leads have been big for a while and seem to be getting bigger.

    So I think it safe to say if it is Yes, it will be a very slim margin, and if No, then easily by double figures. The don’t knows are worryingly numerous and I wonder if they will ever make up their minds.

    Agreed the Yes campaign has been poor.

  6. Turnout seems very odd on these polls considering at the equivalent elections in 2007 it was around 34%. These ones predict something in the upper 60s, if not even higher. Either they’re completely wrong or an unusually high turnout will have a significant effect on local election results.

  7. Something that no-one has mentioned but that occurs in Irish referenda is an exaggerated lead for the most energized campaign on polling day.

    It is a phenomenon that occurs when it is believed that defeat is a forgone conclusion.. ie some soft yes2av’s stay away because the ‘game is up’.

    It could end up meaning that every single pollster underestimates yes… by a few %.

    Will be interesting to see on the day but a 61% v 39% or something like that wouldn’t surprise me..

  8. *underestimates NO..

  9. Rogerh – expect a normal sized turnout. For a variety of reasons, polls almost always grossly overestimate likelihood to vote.

    The reasons are largely…

    (1) People overestimate their own likelihood to vote, probably though social desirability bias. We know from comparing surveys with the marked electoral registers that there is a very good correlation between how likely people say they are to vote and how likely they are to vote, but people consistently overestimate their chances. In other words not all those people who say they are 10/10 likely to vote actually do, but they are more likely to vote than those people who say they are less likely to vote.

    2) Turnout is actually higher than figures suggest. Official turnout figures are the percentage of people on the register who vote…but the electoral register includes some dead people, or people who have moved away, or people on twice, so 100% turnout is impossible.

    3) Polls probably don’t pick up the people who are least likely to vote. People who are the most detached and alienated from the political system and who are the least likely to vote are probably also least likely to answer opinion polls.

    Put together, estimating turnout from polls is a mug’s game. What is factored into the polls is differential turnout across the country – those polls that are weighting by turnout should be picking up the highest turnout in Scotland and the lowest in London, so that should already be “priced in” to the topline figures.

  10. In the ComRes poll NI splits 65:35 in favour of ‘yes’ (admittedly a sample of only 20 people, though!).

  11. Thanks, Anthony.

  12. @Chris Neville -smith – one option that I haven’t heard many people talk about is the prospect that the coalition breaks but there is no GE. Clegg has the option to retain Cameron as a minority PM or possibly go back to the rainbow coalition idea – unlikely as this may be.

    I do wonder what impact the first option would be on Lib Dem support, although I’m under no illusions that such an event would be unexpected.

  13. “I guess that the question now becomes: ‘how big a “no” will destabilise the Lib Dem activists and members’ such that Huhne and Farron get their chance later in the summer.”

    Or next.
    Whenever it happens I can’t believe he’ll be there fronting an election campaign and trying to sell the public a Lib Dem manifesto at the next general election after this.

    When politicians get so toxic you can’t use them in a campaign because they are a vote killer, they stay toxic.

    “That said, on this question, the views that matter are those of the LD posters on here”

    Well it’s closest to their hearts certainly and they will be the ones who can most clearly articulate their satisfaction or otherwise with Clegg and how things have gone.
    But it’s not going to be the activists that strike against Clegg. As we know from Menzies Campbell and CK, it’s the fellow ministers and senior members who start briefing against the leader.

    We did seem to get an illuminating look when Clegg, Huhne and Hughes were vying, just that bit too competitively, to see who could be the hardest on the Conservatives over AV.
    I think the scales finally fell from some Lib Dems eyes as to just how much “new politics” was simply public relations spin. When they scratched the surface the same old tribal politics was ready to resurface with a vengeance at a moments notice.

    There will be a concerted effort to get back to ‘normal’ after May and they could paper over the cracks, at least for a while. But memories will be long and knives may be sharpened behind closed doors. If things get out of control again on any important policy or some unexpected event causes trouble then there’s no telling how things will play out.

  14. @ the green benches

    A very good analysis on the more energised campaign gaining a last minute boost on relative turnout.

    I think this shambolic AV campaign will significantly weaken the Lib-dems within the coalition – their influence will go from minimal to nil basically. I expect more Cable and Huhne grumping and complaining but it will be pointless as they know that any decision to leave the coalition will mean the end of the Lib-dems almost entirely in an early election ( I think they would have fewer than ten seats in an election fought under these circumstances ) which would be a straight-forward Red/Blue battle, the outcome of which I think is unclear but probably just favours Labour at the outset assuming a successful campaign ( by no means a foregone conclusion).

    Cameron can basically do what he wants in government from here on in and the Lib-dems have to lump it. He has a realistic chance of an OM ( but it will be tight) in an early poll – especially one triggered by the Lib-dems whereas he knows, and the Lib-dems know, they are stuffed. He has them right where he wants them really.

  15. @ Chris Neville Smith

    You say its political suicide to pull out the coaltion… completely true for the Lib Dems, but I wonder why you say that of the Consevatives?
    DC will be on a winning streak from the AV referendum, Labour party has yet to rebuild itself properly and the Lib Dems have collapsed, spending cuts yet to fully bite, economy growing, Libya a new conflict that hasn’t yet dragged on and become unpopular, and that comparison to Brown backing away from a snap election will give them a boost.
    In all truth, I think now will be the best chance the Torys have of getting a majority for a long time, and Cameron knows that. If he just pulled out it would look bad, but they could easily engineer a falout and we would have 5 years of a Tory majority.

  16. “expect a normal sized turnout.”

    I’d say in the scottish elections at least because it’s such a battle and still all to play for that could push the turnout up. Then again it couldn’t have been any closer the last time so the 2007 turnout figures may still be a good guide.

  17. @Alec
    “one option that I haven’t heard many people talk about is the prospect that the coalition breaks but there is no GE”

    IMO a likely scenario if Clegg is eventually replaced, with a new leader needing to distance the LDs from the Cons, but unwilling to risk a GE in the short term. Less likely with Clegg as leader.

  18. I’ll say this about the idea of Cameron trying go an early election. If he seriously thought he could win one he’d do it. But one of the amusing problems he has is that because he and Clegg are close with Lib Dem ministers in the cabinet and junior ministers everywhere is it’s not like he could spring that one on them out of the blue.
    Any preparations for an early election would get noticed very quickly.

  19. Betting update:

    a) Ladbrokes have just totally suspended taking bets on SNP Most Seats (you can still bet on LAB Most Seats though: currently 7/2). This either means that vast sums are going on the SNP, or else Shadsy has got sniff of a new poll.

    b) Shetland constituency: Tavish Scott (LIb Dem leader) price now lengthened to 1/4 with Paddy Power (he started at 1/250 !)

    c) Victor Chandler have just published new prices: Year of Scottish independence?

    2020 or later 3/1
    2017 4/1
    2018 9/2
    2014 or earlier 5/1
    2016 5/1
    2019 5/1
    2015 11/2

    http://victorchandler.com/vcbet/en-gb/coupon/show/22888/104040798/98/229/5699315/1

  20. @Jon.

    I say it’s political suicide for the Conservative to end the coalition because I think a long-term bounce in the polls from a referendum result is, at best, optimistic. Even if there is, they would have to convert a 5% trail to a 7% lead to get back to where they started. Okay, it will be easier to get an overall majority with the Lib Dems being squeezed out, but it’s still a tall order to achieve in the next year. Spending cuts are beginning to bite already (I’ve certainly noticed the effects) and it will get worse for quite a while before it begins to get better. I agree that DC will look better if he can engineer a split that looks like the Lib Dems’ fault, but that will take months when the effects on cuts will look even worse.

    I can just about see the possibility of a Lib Dem leadership change leading to a snap anything-but-Tories coalition. Until now I have ruled that idea out on the grounds that you’d have to utterly outrage the Lib Dems for this to happen – but the Conservatives seem on track to achieve this.

  21. @Phil

    @Alec
    “one option that I haven’t heard many people talk about is the prospect that the coalition breaks but there is no GE”
    IMO a likely scenario if Clegg is eventually replaced, with a new leader needing to distance the LDs from the Cons, but unwilling to risk a GE in the short term. Less likely with Clegg as leader.”

    If Clegg does get moved out then this is the obvious best tactical solution for the new LD leader: support a minority Tory administration on the central economic policy and on a vote of confidence ‘in the interests of political and economic stability’.

    This then allows blocking actions from them on anything with a remote whiff of swing voter turn-off and actually genuinely delivers to the LDs the moniker of those ‘civilizing/ restraining the Tories’- unlike the current situation.

    The party can hold to this ‘C&S’ position for 12-18 months before pulling the plug properly over something Osborne and Cameron propose in 2013.

    In this scenario they will look both sensible (‘we held this government together for the last 3 years in the interests of the country’) and principled (‘we stayed as long as we could but every party has their breaking point’).

    Far from lose-lose I can only see the scenario above as a win-win for the Lib Dems.

    But IMHO as said I think Clegg is safe if the defeat is less than 20 points. It would be a very bad defeat but it would not quite have that ‘air of complete catastrophe’ about it.

  22. I think the worst outcome for the coalition would be a very narrow yes vote – especially on low turn out. The Tory backbenchers would be livid, and I could see many attempts to block the change…

    However, I’ve got to say that I think that’s a highly unlikely outcome given the polls. I also think that there is zero chance of the coalition breaking up over this.

  23. On the energised campaign …

    Can’t it work the other way round as well? The polls suggest it is going to be a cake walk for one side or other and so a few undecideds can thus vote “yes” without changing anything. It’s a safe “anti-Tory” vote that wont make any difference.

    Aren’t there any examples of this happening. I know Thatcher beat Heath because she kept lowering expectations that she could win and so people voted for her thinking it was a safe way of giving Heath a beating. She then won!

    On the other side, I also remember that episode of the West Wing where the dead Democrat won because the GOP voters stayed at home cos they’d already lost.

    Which maybe raises the question of whether even more LDs will stay at home (and so their result will be even worse) if the only reason they could think of getting to the polls was to vote for AV. If they think it’s lost they might think “sod this, we’ve ditched our principles, I’ve got no reason to get out and vote”.

    Thoughts anyone ??

  24. Stuart Dickson

    Sorry to butt in . Is there any feedback from local canvassing on the trend of opinion in Scotland. For example could Lab lose South Cunningham?

  25. If the AV ref outcome is No (by whatever margin) AND the LDs get thumped in the local elections, NC will be a lame duck.

    IMO, NC’s power over and in the LD party will be (totally) shot. LD MPs will be jockeying for position in an inevitable leadership challenge.

    NC will try to avoid collapse of the coalition but DC will be aware of this. So…DC and the Con party will adopt increasingly tough positions on all issues.

    IMO NC will face a revolt in his party and by the time of conference a leadership challenge will occur leading to replacement of NC. Subsequently, the LDs will leave the coalition.

    If NC and the LDs attempt in gov to stand firm against the Con colleagues then their position will become untenable and collapse of the coalition will occur anyway IMO.

    A November GE looks probable, IMO. I wonder what odds are being offered by bookies?

  26. @Stuart D
    re. betting update

    That’s pricing in the LDs as more likely to lose Shetland than Orkney!

    Meanwhile (unfortunately) the Cons have moved back to fav with PP in Galloway, with the SNP drifting. VC still have the SNP as favourties. It means that there is another arb opportunity there (ignoring other parties) i.e.
    SNP 5/4 PP
    Con evens VC

    I suspect that PP’s pricing is rather artificial and just reflects them covering the heavy bets they must have taken on the Cons when their mistake created the big arb a couple of weeks back.

  27. @Stuart, you got your premature party celebration novelty cakes and beer yet?

    I suspect that it will be closer than 60-40 on the final result, campaigns always narrow towards the end. If No does lose now the pollsters have some explaining to do.

    Although saying that such a big poll lead could lead many to simply stay at home thinking it’s a forgone conclusion

  28. @Anthony Wells

    “Turnout is actually higher than figures suggest. Official turnout figures are the percentage of people on the register who vote…but the electoral register includes some dead people, or people who have moved away, or people on twice, so 100% turnout is impossible.”

    Do we know, or can we estimate, the percentage of people of voting age who aren’t registered to vote and who, therefore, do not appear on the electoral register in the first place. My understanding is that this is a growing and surprisingly large number, thereby making the real turnout actually LOWER than the percentages quoted. For example, the turnout at the last election was 65% of those on the electoral register but, if I’m right, the percentage of people of voting age who voted, was lower than 65% because of the number of adults missing from the electoral register. In other words, the level of non-voting is even worse than the official turnout percentages are telling us.

    Voter registration is probably disproportionately lower in inner city and deprived areas and this factor, combined with low turnout, probably goes some way to explaining the lower numbers required to elect MPs in those constituencies where significant numbers fail or decline to register. The actual population of people of voting age living in those areas is, I suspect, much higher than the electoral register denotes.

    Is the number of people not on the electoral register what we would call a “known unknown” and will the 2011 Official Census shed some much needed light, I wonder?

  29. “I also think that there is zero chance of the coalition breaking up over this.”

    I think there’s zero chance of the coalition breaking up the day after the vote or just over this. But I also think there’s zero chance of it not affecting the coaliton whatever the result.
    It’s cumulative.

    There’s also talk of a new agreement some time hence for the Conservatives and the Lib Dems along the same lines as the Downing Street rose garden love in. That sounds like it could be a quick fix to stress common goals and refocus on agreed policy. Problem being that some on both sides may want a renegotiation or a brand new document and it could end up opening rifts instead of closing them.

    It’s likely that Lords reform will be wheeled out for Clegg as some kind of consolation prize pretty soon after May. I wonder if the Lords will feel amenable and comfortable with this as they didn’t strike me as being too cooperative lately.

  30. Exile,

    Fraid I have zero on-the-ground info from Cunningham South.

    Phil,

    NOTE: SNP also drifting now in Airdrie & Shotts

    Alex Neil (SNP) now lengthened to 5/4 with Paddy Power. Karen Whitefield (Lab) still 6/4 with Victor Chandler.

    *** This is the first significant SNP to Lab movement in the betting markets for weeks! ***

    Maybe there IS a new poll out there. And maybe not all so rosy for my team?

  31. Phil,

    I’m not touching Galloway &WD again just now. I got CON at 2/1 when PP were having their brain storm, and I got the SNP lassie at very long odds. I’ll review again if prices move dramatically.

    I think we can safely rule out a LAB win from 3rd place in Galloway &WD … unless this new poll is a real shocker !?!

  32. With all the talk on this thread of a coalition break up I thought this recent (25th) offering in one of the daily’s of a prominent politician interesting reading.

    “Today the only, but all-important, shared objective of the LibDemCon Coalition is to stay in office. Even on that there are shaded nuances. Some Lib Dems would rather be in coalition with Labour, the party in which they were brought up, and which they left only because of its then anti-European stance. Others are more comfortable with Mr Cameron, even though they loathe conservatism and the Conservative Party.

    Probably most Lib Dem MPs, like many Conservatives in marginal seats with Labour in second place, now troop through the Government lobby simply to avoid a general election which might cost them their seats and, I suspect, will continue to do so almost whatever the outcome of the elections and referendum on May 5.

    That is why, despite all the posturing, the Coalition is unlikely to fall. It is as true as ever it was that turkeys are reluctant to vote for an early Christmas. Unhappily, that means it is likely that we will see more of the ridiculous nonsense of a Prime Minister pledging himself to the objective of a “reduction in net immigration to tens of thousands” only to be publicly rebuked by his Business Secretary Cable and his Deputy PM Clegg. In the end they all agreed that whilst that may, or may not, be the policy of the Government it is not the objective of the Lib Dem members of the Government (who hope that it will fail) so collective responsibility could be upheld.”

  33. Jack93,

    – “Stuart, you got your premature party celebration novelty cakes and beer yet?”

    No, I most certainly do not!! This election is very far from won yet.

    IMHO anyone who has backed the SNP Most Seats below evens is taking a very, very big risk. Wise advice: never ever bet more than you can afford to lose.

    I would say that it is almost 50 : 50 at the moment (or maybe ever so slightly in the SNP’s favour, say 52 : 48). In other words, the betting markets have moved far too far in the SNP’s direction. I’d be a LAB backer if the very thought of it didn’t make me queasy ;)

  34. Crossbat – you’ve pretty much answered the question yourself, the best measure of completeness and accuracy of the electoral register is by comparing to the census, which we haven’t been able to do for 10 years, but will be in some position to do so quite soon.

    That said, there are two significant drawbacks even to that best measure. Firstly, the people who don’t put themselves on the electoral register are probably also less likely to complete the census. We shouldn’t kid ourselves that the census is perfect either.

    Secondly is the timings. The electoral register is at it’s most accurate every year on Dec 1st, when the new canvass data is brought into force, it then degrades over the year as people die and move house, until November 30th when it is pretty ropey – so the electoral register in March 2011 would have already become less accurate than it was in Dec 2010.

  35. Yikes, Alex Neil price just lengthened again in Airdrie (to 11/8), and LAB have just gone ODDS-ON in Almond Valley !?!

    This is starting to look like a trend…

    I definitely sniff a poll now.

  36. Debbie Abrahams made one of the more significant contributions to PMQs yesterday when she pointed out that undercover of an electioneering “pause”, some of Landsley’s reforms are actually being brought forward by a month to May 3rd.

    Nothing stands still in politics and if LDs and Tories are not (as we were at one time told) enjoying the oppourtunity of finding new ways to work together, then they are moving apart. With the exception of Danny Alexander few seem totally on board atm… and when it comes, the fracture could be quite sudden.

  37. SNP lengthening in Ayr now. CON shortening.

  38. “It is as true as ever it was that turkeys are reluctant to vote for an early Christmas.”

    It’s also true that politics is not always a rational business.

    Brown had to see off two challenges, Blair and Brown battled for years, Major told them to put up or shut up,Thatcher was brought down by a dead sheep. All if which was done with little thought in the moment of which MPs had safe seats or what percentage in the opinion polls made these things tenable. Once things got going then the calculations start in earnest and before they occur all manner of factors pushed the situations to boiling point.

    The point being if you apply enough pressure to a situation then something will have to give. Clegg can’t go on by simply pretending electoral reform wasn’t important to the Lib Dems, or that keeping his Party as a viable political force can be sidelined indefinitely, or that having a nice ministerial job will keep everyone happy for four years. It won’t.

  39. @Stuart Dickson

    Yes I see that Labour is only at 2/1 in Kilmarnock, 11/4 in G Southside but the SNP are favourites in Midlothian North and Muss.

    Surprised the SNP are joint favourites in Edinburgh Western though?

  40. Aside from everything, I really cant stand the ‘want PR – AV is a roadblock to PR’ ad at the top of this page.

    This is an ad funded and made by the no2av campaign / taxpayers alliance / bankers, who are even more opposed to PR than they are AV!

    Am really staggered that the no campaign is still surging, it seems to be down to Labour voters who haven’t thought this one through, but are determined to hurt Clegg (who of course is more likely to lose his seat under AV than FPTP).

    I just hope that the unchartered territory of a referendum means the polls are unreliable, but that is not looking very practical now.

  41. @Crossbat

    This report from the Electoral Commision covers a lot of the stats re electoral registration

    http://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0018/87111/The-completeness-and-accuracy-of-electoral-registers-in-Great-Britain.pdf

  42. @Anthony

    “Firstly, the people who don’t put themselves on the electoral register are probably also less likely to complete the census. ”

    Thanks for the swift response. Another question on this register vs census point has occurred to me, however. Does the Boundary Commission, when redrawing parliamentary constituencies, base its work on the population data provided by the electoral register and, if so, I wonder how accurate the newly drawn constituencies are going to be in terms of reflecting the real population sizes contained within their revised boundaries? Or are the Commission going to wait for the Census data before finalising their calculations?

  43. As a Lib Dem party member I can say that there would be two questions in the mind of anyone considering the validity of a leadership challenge to Clegg:

    1) Could anyone else do a better job of leading the party under the circumstances?
    2) If a more anti-Tory leader were elected, would any resulting break-up in the Coalition help us to implement Lib Dem policies or protect the long term interests of the party?

    The answer to both has to be a resounding “NO”.

    As for Nick Clegg being a “toxic” brand, the Labour brand was totally and utterly “toxic” in June last year, yet somehow it has managed to benefit from massive electoral amnesia about its management of the economy.

    Nick Clegg is only deemed “toxic” because he has been consistently demonised for over a year (since the first leaders’ debates) by press on both the left and the right, virtually without let up, and as a result he has been manoeuvred into being the scapegoat for everyone’s hard feelings about cuts having to take place and, to quote Liam Byrne, the fact that “there’s no money left”.

  44. Stuart

    I’m presuming that any poll is unlikely to be YouGov. I just completed one for them today.

  45. Hmmm… a seat moving the other way though: East Lothian, where Iain Gray price is actually lengthening (now 2/7 with PP).

    The only thing I can conclude is that a lot of money is being staked today. But the question is: why??

    I must now admit that I’m confused. I’m therefore gonna log out and chill out. After all, there is more to life than politics, polls and punting. Apparently.

  46. @Jon

    “I can just about see the possibility of a Lib Dem leadership change leading to a snap anything-but-Tories coalition.”

    I wonder what impact the Scottish Election might have on a GE if one occurred this year. Generally GE’s don’t favour the SNP as much as Scottish elections, but that might be a different story if the SNP get a decent showing in May.

    The Nats might even campaign on an ‘anyone but Labour’ ticket based on their recent history of not compromising with other parties. Labour can’t afford to lose Scotland in a GE. It’s not likely, but if the Nats did well, the Tories might have to turn to them for a majority in return for…

  47. Sorry. That should have been:

    @Chris Neville-Smith

  48. Stuart – East Lothian

    Dave Berry (SNP) Candidate is now only 9/4- was 25/1

    Iain Gray was 1/200 !! only a few weeks ago- now 2/7

  49. ROB SHEFFIELD & MIKE N

    Liked your comments between you i think you could be getting close to what realistically could happen.

    May 6th and May 7th 2011 are going to be the worst days electorally for the Lib Dems since 1931/35/45/50/51 (take your pick). Clegg is becoming history but under a new leader who is seen as actively opposing a lot of Cameron’s pet projects theLib Dems could recover some of their lost vote quite quickly.

    I go for a spring 2012 GE rather than an autumn 2011, as I think the coaltion breaking/move to confidence and supply could be this autumn and it’ll take a while from that position for the Lib Dems to bring down the government on a matter really advantageous to them.

  50. Crossbat – the boundary commission use the electoral register data on the 1st December 2010. They can take into account other data if they want, but the electorate of the proposed seats (defined as people on the electoral register on the 1st Dec 2010) must by law be within 5% of the quota.

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