Tonight’s polls

Tonight we should have the fortnightly Opinium poll for the Observer, plus the usual weekly YouGov poll for the Sunday Times.

Meanwhile the lastest Populus and YouGov polls from yesterday had a four point lead from YouGov – CON 35%, LAB 39%, LDEM 9%, UKIP 10% (tabs) and a seven point lead from Populus – CON 33%, LAB 40%, LDEM 11%, UKIP 9% (tabs).


92 Responses to “Tonight’s polls”

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  1. @AW

    Any ideas on the 4-point lead? Standard MoE?

  2. Can anybody out there explain why weighting should cut a party’s unweighted support in half? Are Populus pollsters regularly mobbed by gangs of pensioners and forced to record spurious UKIP votes?

  3. Very interesting cross breaks in both polls for Scotland.

  4. Some interesting image issues for Cameron with the increased campaigning activity around foxhunting and the Countryside Alliance. I think this is one of those issues he can’t win on, through no choice of his own. Go ahead with a free vote as promised, and open himself up to accusations of snobbery, or decide not to, and antagonise a chunk of his supporters, as well as break another promise. An altogether uncomfortable place. While the issue itself is an absolute irrelevance in terms of VI, I suspect it may have underlying resonance, which is why it is a problem.

    Interestingly enough, the Countryside Alliance have been briefing that thousands of new members from all ages and social classes have joined hunts since the ban, and are using this as a justification for reinstating hunting foxes, as opposed to the increasingly popular drag hunting.

    The people who charged about on horseback after foxes were never the brightest bunch in the first place, but they seem to have forgotten their predictions that the ban would create 40,000 rural job losses and destroy traditional communities. If they are now saying that it has enabled a huge expansion in hunt membership, perhaps they should ponder that the idea of rising without slaughter as the objective is actually more popular, and that the ban has actually helped the rural economy.

  5. @AC

    Given the small sample in Scotland (and the unusually high Green VI), I think that cross-break might be a ‘wait and see’. :))

  6. @ Statgeek,

    MoE I reckon, with a high Tory VI for that day. If you average it together with that 9 point lead from earlier you get 6.5, which is about the average YouGov lead at this point.

    (I realise my opinion on this is somewhat less valuable than Anthony’s. ;) )

  7. @ Stutter,

    It’s probably this lot again: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TgRPY9o9pZM

  8. @Stutter

    We’ve been there in detail many times in the past and it’s all down to the highly questionable way in which Populus see fit to recalibrate their party ID question to fit a survey taken around the time of the last GE, in the absence of any polling data from the GE.

    Incredibly, Populus consider that they’ve come up with a polling methodology that makes them about 9 times more likely to sample a UKIP identifier than should be the case. Those UKIP identifiers are then downweighted to such an extent that they’re all but eliminated from the published VI. It means that the UKIP VI is made up almost entirely of people who say they will vote UKIP but who have usually identified themselves with UKIP – which amounts to less than half those who say that they intend to vote UKIP.

  9. Correction, last sentence should read:

    “It means that the UKIP VI is made up almost entirely of people who say they will vote UKIP but who have NOT usually identified themselves with UKIP – which amounts to less than half those who say that they intend to vote UKIP.

  10. “Incredibly, Populus consider that they’ve come up with a polling methodology that makes them about 9 times more likely to sample a UKIP identifier than should be the case. Those UKIP identifiers are then downweighted to such an extent that they’re all but eliminated from the published VI. It means that the UKIP VI is made up almost entirely of people who say they will vote UKIP but who have usually identified themselves with UKIP – which amounts to less than half those who say that they intend to vote UKIP.”

    Pardon?

  11. @Rosie and Daisie

    “Pardon?”

    Populus and UKIP. Grrr. Wuff! Wuff!

  12. @Statgeek @Spearmint

    The 4 % lead looks to entirely within MOE from I sit too.

    Since the Conference season, these are the Con and Lab VI scores:

    Party-Mean-Std Dev

    Con -31.8-1.390
    Lab-39.9-0.973

    Therefore the Conservatives at 35 % is at + 2.3 standard deviations.

    I’d expect a few VI scores at 35 %, and the presence of few doesn’t show the mean has changed at all.

    The Conservative VI (5 poll rolling average) is 33.0 %. That makes 35 % even less extraordinary.

  13. If I understand Populus’s weighting regarding UKIP, it goes like this:

    Take UKIP’s unweighted vote
    Discard the votes from people who don’t, uh, something
    Um
    Look! Squirrel!

  14. @Martyn
    “If I understand Populus’s weighting regarding UKIP, it goes like this:
    Take UKIP’s unweighted vote
    Discard the votes from people who don’t, uh, something
    Um
    Look! Squirrel!”
    _____________________

    No. It’s….

    Take UKIP’s unweighted vote
    Discard (almost all of) the votes from people who DO usually identify with UKIP
    Um
    Look! Squirrel!”

  15. Martyn
    That’s just nuts.

  16. Lol

  17. There are more than enough data to conduct an Analysis of Variance to determine rigorously how Populus and Yougov results differ – should one want to.

    Classify each VI according to Party, Week and Polling Company.

  18. Apologies – no intention of hijacking the thread but a couple of days ago the municipalisation of energy supply came up. According to the FT there will be a referendum on it in Berlin (to twist it out of the hand of the eastern Vikings – Swedes). It happened in Hamburg. According to the article the Berlin council calls for a No vote – so it is a grassroot movement seemingly against the established order. It also involves producing energy not simply distributing it. Makes it more interesting.

  19. @ Ernie

    “There are more than enough data to conduct an Analysis of Variance to determine rigorously how Populus and Yougov results differ – should one want to.”

    Very true, but where would then the fun of interesting opinions come from?

  20. The reason why I like Yougov is the fact they repeat the same methodology a large number of times.

    Trying to analyse the companies that poll weekly or monthly never seems as good..

  21. STATGEEK

    @AC

    Given the small sample in Scotland (and the unusually high Green VI), I think that cross-break might be a ‘wait and see’. :))
    ________

    Agreed but does get the juices going.. :-)

  22. The green juices?

    :-o

  23. @ martyn

    Can’t find that look! Squirrel! function in my version of excel- is it in a later one as it might be worth upgrading?

  24. @ Shev II,

    I think it’s in the advanced analytics package.

  25. @Shevii

    You dont’t need a special function, or an upgrade, as long as you have Excel you can always find a way of getting the results you want – as the recent Rheinharf-Rogoff fiasco proved.

  26. @Laszlo Billy Bob

    Thank you – I have replied on the original thread, the Tuesday roundup.

  27. The referendum is tomorrow in Berlin, with a result in the evening. A simple majority provided there is 25% turnout. 200,000 may already have voted by post.

    Berlin senate and press advising a no vote, but the FT article says an opinion poll suggests a healthy majority in favour.

    Vattenfall sponsors the Berlin half marathon, but gets flack for flatening villages in the East to make way for opencast lignite mining. Next in line is 700 year-old Proschim, which is a 100% renewable village.

  28. BB
    I wonder whether this ‘municipal’ fashion is a goer. To take energy, we are a long way from the town gasworks of the thirties.

  29. According to Mike Smithson twitter feed

    Opinium:

    Lab 37 (-1)
    Cons 31 (+4)
    Ukip 16 (-1)
    LD 7 (-2)

  30. @howard

    Might make a dent in unemployment though… think of all the lamplighters we’d need.

  31. CHORDATA.
    Many thanks for your news.

    Unreliably high LD figure I think, on the night we recall Guido

  32. Is that the lowest LD score recorded?
    Why isn’t NC under more pressure internally?

    Maybe they think they’re beyond help.

  33. Cloud Spotter,

    Defenestrating Clegg now is like having a mutiny against Captain Smith after the Titanic hit the iceberg – nobody wants the job now and it’s better just to let him take the fall.

  34. @ChrisLane – who is Guido?

  35. @ Billy Bob

    Those lignite mines in the old GDR are quite a sight… You can see the wonders of human engineering and human destruction.

    In Germany municipalities probably have engineers (since German banks employ more engineers than accountants and finance graduates). I’m not sure about England and Wales (they probably would have to hire firms with expertise (there are a number of them up here in the North – but then… Rotten boroughs…).

    But in general it is a very interesting movement – forcing local authorities to engage with the locals and also (assuming unequal distribution of energy generation) with other municipalities. Sounds like democracy…

  36. @Mr Nameless

    I hope you’re right, and I think you are. Certainly the ones who think they’ll hold on to their seat may consider themselves to have a better chance once much of the rest of the field has been eliminated. The bookies favourite – Fallon, in one of their few safe seats – probably calculates that such an electoral reality check might also swing more LD members votes behind a candidate who kept outside of government i.e. him.

  37. If that Opinium is right, it’s just a predictable unwinding of what was a very clear outlier.

  38. Main theme of the Observer poll was the question about BBC bias. More saw the BBC as left wing than right wing but not by a lot and a high percentage for neutral or just a little bit biased one way or another.

    I think it’s been discussed a lot on here and I do not think they have any inherent bias but I do think they tend to go easy on the government of the day and are easily swayed by the popular press in prioritising stories. I think maybe the perceived left wing bias comes from their focus on liberal issues and human interest stories which can often be seen as slightly left wing.

    The only thing that annoys me with the BBC is a tendency to dumb down these days. I saw an interview on there the other day immediately after the court ruling on workfare and the presenter was make to look stupid because he admitted he didn’t even know what the points in the judgment were. OK- it was a breaking news story but could easily have been prepared in advance by studying what points the ruling was going to cover and to have been pre prepared.

  39. It still seems that whatever the variations in other parties’ scores, all the pollsters have Labour continually rock solid at 37 to 40.

    I put myself in EM’s position. He’s like a coiled spring waiting to unleash the real killer election policies (assuming he has them)..

  40. SHEV11
    Paul Mason and Steph have left the BBC. That says to me a lot.

  41. @Laszlo

    Dead planet metaphors seem to be the only ones available to describe the scene at an opencast mine.

    Here’s a bit about the people who got the ball rolling:

    h
    ttp://www.spiegel.de/international/business/an-unlikely-effort-to-buy-the-berlin-power-grid-a-886426.html

  42. Being ex GDR, I don’t suppose anything like land restoration is bugetted.
    It doesn’t sound to me as though the Berlin Council has much over for this sort of action.

    Our own slag heaps are being dealt with most expertly.
    Come to think of it, the NCB is no more so I wonder from which pot our restoration schemes is financed.

  43. Bit of background on German municipal power networks http://www.epsu.org/a/8107

    Not familiar with this topic, but it sounds like German power networks operate on a contract bid basis, a bit like UK railways. It also looks like this is the network, rather than generation, although I can’t be sure of that.

    Posters and readers might be interested to note that there is a small but growing community energy sector in the UK. This is almost exclusively focused on renewables, and is a developing sector, although one that faces many obstacles.

    There are some good examples of local communities trying (and succeeding in more and more cases) to develop and own commercial generation projects. Some of these are based on small shareholders garnering profits, while others seek to establish ownership by actual community controlled bodies, so that profits are used for local benefit.

    Unfortunately the UK has been extremely slow to recognise the fact that the environmental benefits of renewables should be linked to local community economic benefits, through direct community ownership, but there are some of us fighting this battle and making some modest progress.

  44. test

  45. @MSmithsonPB: LAB have 9% lead over the Tories in the YouGov poll for tomorrow’s Sunday Times. No detailed breakdown yet

  46. alec

    “test”

    Good post.

  47. Howard – Totally agree. If he can consistently get between 37-40% whilst keeping most of his powder dry, and only release onw main policy to date(energy price fix, which was well recieved) what happens in say the last six months of this parliament when the trickle turns into a rush?

  48. If what I read in the Telegraph today is true, credit to George Osborne. They are reporting moves against trust funds in the Autumn statement, with a consultation regarding a change to the regulations that allows wealthy people to avoid inheritance tax.

    At present, trust funds over a certain size are subject to a 6% tax every ten years, but so long as they aren’t established on the same day, multiple trust funds can be set up so each falls below the threshold, avoiding the tax entirely. This is how very wealthy people avoid any inheritance tax costs.

    It’s a laughably daft situation, but one that we see so many times in the tax policy area. Having wealthy people legally able to shield assets and income from tax just means poorer people have to pay more, and I think it’s to Labour’s shame (and more specifically Tony Blair’s) that these issues were not addressed when they had 160 seat plus majorities, but to be fair, in their defence they didn’t have the cover of a financial crisis to initiate necessary reforms.

  49. @R&D – just had an innocuous post on municipal energy put into automod, after my 12.59 post on fox hunting went the same way (now cleared) so I was getting a bit paranoid.

    I posted something nice about George Osborne just to keep AW happy anyway.

  50. Tonights Yougov result:

    Lab 41%

    Con 32%

    Ukip 12%

    L Dem 8%

    The Lib Dems just keep marching on to disaster.

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