There have been a couple of new European and Scottish polls over the last couple of days. Europe first, this morning’s YouGov/Sun poll had topline figures of CON 22%, LAB 28%, LDEM 10%, UKIP 25%, GRN 10%. Labour are just ahead of UKIP in first place, the Conservatives remain in third, the Greens and Lib Dems equal for fourth place.

The second was by ComRes who had toplines of CON 22%, LAB 24%, LDEM 8%, UKIP 34%, GRN 5%. Much better figures for UKIP there, with Labour and the Conservatives not far apart for second and the Lib Dems holding fourth place. A lot of this apparent difference is down to how they approach turnout – YouGov’s topline figures are based on all respondents, if they took only those certain to vote UKIP would be ahead. ComRes’s figures include only those 10/10 certain to vote, if they included those who say they are 5/10 or more likely to vote UKIP’s lead over Labour would be a far more modest 2 points.

Turning to the Scottish polls, there have been two new referendum polls this week, or at least, two newly published Scottish polls. The TNS poll was actually condcted in the last week of April and first couple of days of May. Their topline figures are YES 30%(+1), NO 42%(+1) – so no change in the lead. Tabs here. The second poll is by Survation and much more recent, their topline figures are YES 37%(-1), NO 47%(+1). A minor increase in the NO lead since their last poll, but really it’s a continuation of a no change trend in Survation’s Scottish polling: their last five referendum polls have all had figures within 1 point of YES 38%, NO 47%. Details here.

Meanwhile tonight’s YouGov voting intention figures for the Sun are CON 34%, LAB 36%, LD 8%, UKIP 13%

289 Responses to “Latest European and Scottish polls”

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  1. @AW

    Looking at the Survation tables for the referendum – they seem to weigh according to make up of the population. I am not sure how that works they must be making some assumptions about turnout in the various groups?

  2. I think UKIP are ahead slightly ahead at the minute all things considered in the Euros, although the council elections on the same day will have quite an impact I think.

    I think I may be one of very few who votes for a ‘big’ party in the Euros, and a smaller party in the locals, so unimpressed am I at the local council!

  3. Couper – not sure what you mean. Normal practice is you weight to the known demographics of the adult population, then some companies weight or filter according to how likely people *say* they are to vote. As far as I’m aware Survation are normal in doing that.

  4. @AW

    I thought they weighed on how folk voted in GE2010 etc
    Given the referendum is quite party political that sort of weighing should work.

  5. As always, polling in Scotland on the 2015 and 2016 elections should be thought of as even less of as a predictor than normal. The referendum result is likely to have a significant effect on how people actually vote.

    However, taken as a snapshot of current party support, Scotland Votes gives results on those figures as (previous election in brackets) –

    Westminster – Lab 31 (42) : SNP 23 (6) : LD 2 (11) : Con 2 (1)

    Holyrood Yes Parties -SNP 60 (69) : Green 10 (2) : Ind 1 (0)
    No Parties – Lab 40 (37) : Con 11 (15) : LD 6 (5)

  6. Correction “Westminster – Lab 31 (42)” should have been Westminster – Lab 32 (41)

  7. If there’s a no vote and the Scottish seat totals end up like that, there’s a very real chance of Alex Salmond’s party having the casting vote in parliament. Wonder what would happen?

  8. it seems that the ukip unwind in the next 11 months or so is the most uncertain aspect of the general election. we can expect both main parties to be in the 33-36 range… in nearly all combinations within these ranges labour come out with the most seats. lib dems will get 10-13%, not much more i think. the ukip vote is utterly unpredictable at this stage…their range could be anything between 6% and 14%. i’d expect it at 8% or so.

  9. Mr Nameless

    If a Westminster vote did actually end up that way, then the leader of the SNP at Westminster, Angus Robertson, could well have an important role in deciding the domestic governance of England!

    That would be a strange effect of Westminster’s determination to concatenate English and UK government in the same Parliament. :-)

    I would imagine that such a situation would allow Lab or Con to be allowed to govern England, if they legislated for Devo Max (NB “Max” not “Min”!). If neither was prepared to do so, then the next Westminster Parliament would be “interesting” – a de facto Lab/Con coalition?

  10. First time for seemingly aeons that the UKPR average is in grey and not red.

    No doubt the situation will change within a few months of the Euro elections, but given that any criticism of Miliband’s leadership to date has been answered with a (slightly complacent, to my mind) shrug of the shoulders and “the polls still point to a Labour majority” remark, is he about to face a difficult Summer of criticism and friendly fire?

  11. On YouGov – After a zero and a load of one- and three-pointers, it’s about bloody time we got a two!

  12. Neil,

    Technically (removing SF and adding SDLP MPs) the polls still do point to a Labour majority. But I take your point about not being complacent.

    I recorded our Q&A session with Liam Byrne and Paul Blomfield today and some interesting things were said, but I’ll transcribe tomorrow.

  13. “The second was by ComRes who had toplines of CON 22%, LAB 24%, LDEM 8%, UKIP 34%, UKIP 34%, GRN 5%. Much better figures for UKIP there, with Labour and the Conservatives not far apart for second and the Lib Dems holding fourth place”

    AW is so excited by the UKIP VI he had to post it twice. ;-)

    That aside, what a shocker for the Lib/Dems slugging it oot with the Greens.

  14. OLDNAT

    “Holyrood Yes Parties -SNP 60 (69) : Green 10 (2) : Ind 1 (0)
    No Parties – Lab 40 (37) : Con 11 (15) : LD 6 (5)

    Harvie would be looking for at least one or two cabinet posts in that parliamentary make up. What post/posts would you give him?

  15. It’s interesting that we go into the summer before the election period seriously gets underway with the main parties in poor shape.

    The Lib Dems look like a walking corpse, the Conservatives have never lifted above the low thirties, and Labour are sliding back and have lost all momentum.

    Strategists for them all have much to consider.

  16. @Neil A/Mr Nameless

    “Complacency” is in the eye of the beholder, I think, and be careful about creating straw men here. My definition of complacency would be an assumption of victory and an airy dismissal of real difficulties by Labour sympathisers, and I have seen little of any of that, either on these pages or elsewhere.

    However a sense of proportion and a relaxation with inevitable setbacks and reversals from time to time is more like sang-froid to my mind, much different to complacency. Sang-froid can unnerve opponents who’d much rather see panic in enemy ranks! :-)

  17. @ Old Nat

    “As always, polling in Scotland on the 2015 and 2016 elections should be thought of as even less of as a predictor than normal. The referendum result is likely to have a significant effect on how people actually vote.
    However, taken as a snapshot of current party support, Scotland Votes gives results on those figures as (previous election in brackets) –
    Westminster – Lab 31 (42) : SNP 23 (6) : LD 2 (11) : Con 2 (1)”

    Another complication with the Scottish Westminster seat determinations is that in this calculation there is a UNS assumption. This I think is as unlikely as it is in the rest of the UK.

    In particular the LDs: Whilst they are sure to poll terribly I suspect their fall will be unevenly distributed when one considers the relative personal popularity/unpopularity of some of their individual Scottish MPs.

  18. Gordon Brown looks as though he’s been involved with some of the copious Labour literature because I’d swear the latest leaflet sent out was an exact copy of the 2010 manifesto.

  19. Couldn’t help notice the Latest UNS Projection: Hung Parliament(!) to the right there.

    Seems to me Labour’s soft-peddling of their opposition (more muted than not) and utter refusal to offer their voters anything substantial (and the Tory media’s hyperventilating over temporary freezes doesn’t qualify as that) has landed them with all the enthusiasm they deserve.

  20. I thought I’d play about on Anthony’s seat predictors. If you use the latest YouGov figures:
    Con 34, Lab 36, L/D 8)

    And plug them into the simple swing projector and you get the seats numbers:

    Con 273
    Lab 334
    L/D 17
    Other 8 + 18

    – a Labour majority of 18.

    But if you put in the latest figures for:
    Scotland (Con 18, Lab 35, L/D 5, SNP 37)
    and Wales (Con 24, Lab 45, L/D 7, PC 11)
    into the Advanced Swingometer:

    together with the GB figures[1] above. This gives a rather different picture:

    Con 263
    Lab 328
    L/D 17
    SNP 21
    PC 2
    Oth 1 + 18 (Lab majority of 6)

    So the SNP have taken 10 seats off the Conservatives and 6 off Labour.

    But “Hang on!” you all cry, how can the Tories lose seats to the SNP when they only have one in Scotland to start with. It’s because if the SNP are gaining seats and votes from Labour in Scotland, then, for the same overall VI, Labour must be getting more votes in the rest of GB and gaining more Con-Lab marginals to partly compensate for their Scottish losses. So the Conservatives are not as immune as they might think from the advance of the SNP.

    [1] You have to adjust the ‘Other’s figure so it totals to 101 with the {Lab+Con+L/D} and the ‘Others’ in the Wales has to add to 99 with {Lab+Con+L/D+P/C}. Don’t ask.

  21. @ Roger Mexico.

    Very well made point. I remember thinking the same after the Eastleigh by-election was written up as a bad result for Lab when they only scored 10%.

    When I thought it actually was a great result for them since at the time they were on 40% in National VIs and if that wasn’t in Eastleigh then it probably was in areas where Lab might want it quite a lot more.

    All this goes to show just how VI%’s and even their movements are gloriously irrelevant if we don’t know where the distribution is. Its very clear that assuming UNS is applicable is not very accurate.

    Thats why Ashcroft’s marginal polling will be so useful. And why some of the other polling companies should also cough up and do the same thing.


    That’s a fantastic analysis but if it’s a YES vote in September then I think your “Advanced Swingometer” might need reprogramed.

    See Peter Snow for instructions. ;-)

  23. GRHinPorts

    I don’t know the exact model that Scotland Votes uses, but it’s certainly not simply UNS.

    Similarly, you have to drive the LDs down to impossibly low levels for Orkney & Shetland to be anything other than LD. On almost any numbers, Charlie Kennedy still gets elected (most people reckon he would still get in with any party label or none.

    Since the same computer model predicts results for both Holyrood and Westminster, it seems unlikely that Westminster is calculated on a Scots UNS.

    All the List regions, are calculated on a UNS basis for that region, and not a Scottish UNS. They can’t be calculated any other way.

    Scotland Votes’ assumptions may well be wrong, but so might yours. Like any seat calculator, it is a useful tool, and I make no greater claim for it than that.

  24. Old Nat

    You need to be careful with those Scotland Votes projections because they don’t allow for UKIP to gain seats and if they do get 7% of the regional vote then that should be enough to get them a seat in all regions if evenly spread. Presumably it would be at the expense mainly of SNP and Labour, though possibly taking the second Tory seat in some cases

  25. Roger Mexico


    The calculator clearly hasn’t been updated recently. If you enter 0 for Independent in the List, then Margo still gets elected! You have to leave the space blank for her sad absence to be recorded.

    However, I’m not sure that there is sufficient data to suggest how that UKIP vote is distributed in the Scottish regions to make the relevant d’Hondt calculations. On these figures, of course, they would gain seats.

    If it’s a Yes vote, would UKIP be putting forward candidates? As with all Scottish politics, there are huge caveats on any seat calculator until Septeember 19th.

  26. Allan Christie

    Well Yes or No the Scottish seats will still be fought in 2015. And the SNP will be advised to fight them hard, because balance of power would give then useful negotiating power for the independence settlement or for post-No devo.

    Unlike everyone else I suspect that there will be very little difference made to the Party make-up of Scottish politics by the referendum result. The SNP will not disintegrate if they win any more than Indian Congress or Fine Fail did. If they lose they will go on as before with few recriminations because they were not expecting to win. If they lose, the Parties in the No campaign will blame each other, but that’s what they do normally.

  27. @James Peel

    “it seems that the ukip unwind in the next 11 months or so is the most uncertain aspect of the general election.”

    It might just be decided by two or three by-elections along the way, which would keep UKIP’s fire burning more brightly if they occur. They do well out of them, it seems, but General Elections are a different beast, and I suppose the UKIP / Lib squeeze will make or break either Con or Lab’s fortunes.

  28. @Roger

    “Well Yes or No the Scottish seats will still be fought in 2015. And the SNP will be advised to fight them hard, because balance of power would give then useful negotiating power for the independence settlement or for post-No devo.”

    In the former scenario, wouldn’t be in any (every) party’s interests to negotiate on any indy settlement?

  29. @ Old Nat

    I don’t know the exact model that Scotland Votes uses, but it’s certainly not simply UNS.”

    Oh well fair enough if Scotland Votes is a model that at least tries to get beyond UNS. I was not aware of that.

    Look even UNS calculators such as Electoral Calculus and the one here on UKPR have some use in that they establish the effect of rises and falls in VI on a uniform basis.

    However unless some interpretive model is used proper accurate seat calculations are going to be unreliable.

  30. Looking at the UKPR moving average, I see another drop in Lab support down to 34% now. I think that is from 39 in February, down to 36 at the end of March and now 2 more points down in the last 2 weeks.

    The drift of support seems to be 2% to Greens, Nats and Other and 3% to UKIP, going from Lab 2010 support (3%) and 2010 LD support (2%)

    I know Lab supporters are saying it is the Euros bringing the score down, but it doesn’t say much for the enthusiasm for a Lab government, when at the first sign of other choices people switch to other non coalition parties.

    On the Guar*dian website BTL there is a poster called Grabsplatter (spelling?), who whenever there is a report of a particularly upsetting coalition act, points out that the last Lab government started the policy or the Lab party in fact supports the policy. It drives the Lab supporters wild on there. Grabsplatter is a Con supporter.

    It is a very effective tactic for depressing support for Lab amongst left of centre voters It feeds into the narrative that all Westminster parties are the same and of course has the desired effect of causing potential Lab supporters to stay at home or vote for minor parties.


  31. @Floating Voter

    If Grabsplatter can reduce Labour’s polling that much, he’s very influential ;-)

  32. @Catmanujeff


    you know what I mean, that tactic of putting off left wing voters from Lab by saying ‘there all the same, don’t bother voting Lab, stay at home, vote for other parties’

  33. Wow, if doesn’t seem like so long ago that we were seeing uns projections giving a Labour majority of 94, but now we see…

    Labour short by 1

    Oh dear!

  34. Average Labour lead based solely on this week’s figures:


    Over simplified I know, but still interesting

  35. The idea that Labour could ever score big leads and romp home in 2015 like ’97 was never realistic and few Lab supporters expected that.

    The ABT movement in ,97 was so strong and TB so good a presentational politician that New Labour Scooped up protest suppport from many areas.

    In other parliaments as the Government has gone through mid-term blues not much support has moved Lab-Tory or vice versa – the LDs have increased their VI from left or right but they are not available as a protest of course so others are picking up a lot of ephemeral support.

    Voters seem to feel duped by first Blair/Brown, then Cameron and Clegg and it will be a long time imo before a mainstream politician can pick up the Zeitgest in a way TB did.

    At the last GE (after all the huiffing and puffing) the 3 main Westminster Parties still scored an aggregate of just under 90%.

    At the moment polls suggest that the ‘big’ 3 will score only 75% at the GE.

    Does anyone seriously think that the UKIP plus other others will get 25% at the GE – even 15% would be a massive increase.

    The question then imo is what will happen to that minimum 10% and how will it be distributed in key marginals.

    All to play for and above 35% for Lab and Con is the real staritng position

  36. There have been a few articles about the possibility of minority govt. lately but I can’t see it myself, except perhaps if CON or LAB were within single figures and could rely on DUP (CON) and SDLP/PC (LAB) supporting most of the legislation they want to get through. I think a supply and confidence agreement with parties from NI would be awkward as the other side from NI could easily accuse the govt of taking sides and it could lead to an escalation of the situation.

    If the SNP do make big gains from the LDs and Labour and actually I think they will – a few of LDs long-serving Scottish MPs are stepping down (Ming Campbell, Sir Alan Beith, Sir Malcolm Bruce) – then I expect they would continue their policy of not voting on ‘West Lothian’ matters (i.e. matters relating only to England). Should they hold the balance of power that might then allow a minority to work, though a promise of further devolution (likely from both parties I think) might be needed to sure up votes on issues that do effect Scotland.

    I’m not sure a Scandinavian model minority govt. with different agreements made for different legislation would be workable in an FPTP-elected parliament. A Social Democratic Party in Sweden/Denmark will usually be able to negotiate bill-by-bill agreements with a moderately sizeable far left, the greens and a centre party. A Labour minority, assuming they were more than 10 away from a majority, would surely have to rely on the LDs for almost every measure of significance.

  37. Well, there is to be a Miliband makeover (focus groups apparently react badly to his TV appearances) courtesy of David Axelrod.

    Medhi Hassan makes the point that Miliband’s media team is otherwise dominated by newspaper men. More of a problem imo is that Labour as a whole has become peripheral in recent years.

    The media has been concentrating on Con/LD coalition spats or Con/Ukip talking points, and turning to a new generation of right-leaning pundits for comment.

  38. @Billy Bob

    There is a difference in culture between Left wing media figures and Right wing ones. When challenged, the Lefties go on the defensive and the Righties go on the offensive. The latter makes for what is considered to be better telly and newspapers and that’s a good reason why they have the ascendency.

    Remember that the heart of all modern political reporting is conflict and anyone who is keen to take part in it, or, better still, promote it, will get a lot of invitations.

    Personally, I think this attitude is a lot of what is wrong with modern politics and media, but it’s what wins out. I prefer consensualists who discuss issues. You know, adults.

  39. @Jim Jam

    The current Westminster VI position is significantly affected by the impending Euros which has monopolised media attention ever since it appeared UKIP would be making a strong showing.

    This focus on the Euros has also led to people considering other alternatives to the big 3, notably the Greens. This fragmentation of parties opposes to the Coalition has inevitably hurt Labour. However, not in the way you might think. Labour isn’t losing significant support to UKIP, but to the Greens – who are consistently polling in the 5% range in Westminster VI. Most (I would suspect) of these voters will probsbly return to Lab after the Euros, pushing Lab back into the 37-38 range.

    Nothing we have seen yet from the Tories suggests that they can get beyond around 33-34%. They have hit the very occasional 35, but have typically been in the 32-33 range.

  40. Sorry, shouldn’t have made an implied value judgement in the previous post. I don’t think Left-wingers constantly apologising or looking as if they’re about to, about their own perfectly reasonable beliefs, is any better than those right-wing attack figures who pick fights to get on the telly. No wonder the electorate think Labour lack conviction at times.

    The political climate whereby angry figures can dominate the political discussion regardless of content is how this oddball failed SPAD can get his silly vendetta with the Deputy PM (I mean, seriously, who does he think he is?) spread all over the newspapers when in a sensible society he’d be ignored.

  41. It is the sudden shifts in Lab VI that is most worrying – it is easy to imagine Lab going into next Spring a few points ahead coming out of the GE well behind.

    The belief that the 2010 LibDems would give Lab am OM seems unfounded – Lab may appear calm on surface but I really hope they are planning drastic changes in presentation and direction behind the scenes.

    On Scotland Cameron and Osbourne have been up here playing good cop, bad cop respectively. Not good for Labour as Cameron repeatedly talked about how he and Gordon Brown and Labour were on the same side etc. I wonder if it was deliberate to depress Labs vote in the Euros.

    He also rather contradictory said ‘ I am here to fight for the union blan blah’ but then refused to debate Salmond because it wasnt his place to debate Scottish independence – it was a bit difficult to justify. The real reason is, of course, he would get beat in the debate no one doubts that.

  42. @Jack Sheldon

    Although the ancient Burgh of Berwick-upon-Tweed (known to some as South Berwick) belongs geographically and morally to Scotland, it has been occupied by the English, following ethnic cleansing of its men, women and children, since the 1300s. Alan Beith, Kt, is therefore an ‘English’ MP, not a Scottish on as you seem to think. But thanks for the backing for a return of Berwick to its natural status!

    As for SNP having a say in ‘who governs England’ if the numbers are very close, I raised that issue yesterday, or perhaps it was on Tuesday. It would certainly offer the opportunity to demand a real Devo-Max, even to the point of going for a change of name to the United Kingdoms (plural) of GB (meaning England and Scotland) & NI, with sovereignty north of the Border vested in the Scottish People, as the Claim of Right, and the Declaration of Arbroath indicate. Westminster mighty be forced to pass legislation which effectively brought the Union of 1707 to an end, whilst establishing some sort of Council of Britain and (Northern) Ireland which oversaw foreign affairs, finances etc.

    This gets better and better the more muddy the waters…… Devo Ultra–Max following on from a UKIP surge in the south…….

    Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland refusing to recognise England’s request to leave the EU…… the possibilities are endless….

    But back to reality…… I suspect a No vote will be followed by a rise in SNP representation at Westminster, but it is impossible to tell at this point what is going to happen beyond the end of next week (Euro elections), let alone after the GE of 2015.

  43. @ AW

    Any chance of updating the European voting intentions poll list? Very difficult to pick up on a pattern here (especially when out of date!). Maybe will be one those elections where we don’t know even know the order of parties until votes have been counted.

    Just to note that Alan Beith represents an English constituency.

  45. Raf – we on same page more or less and I hate doing this but I predicted it as did others although I thought the Green surge would be smaller and as a result did not think cross over/parity would be hit even within MOE.
    Who knows if Lab will recover to 38% or 36% (YG) by the end of June but that they will bounce back I am very confident.

  46. Some interesting polls here. Starting with the European elections, two strikingly different ones in terms of the level of UKIP support, apparently related to likelihood to vote. Aren’t respondents in opinion polls notoriously inaccurate, though, in gauging their own likelihood to vote, much in the same way that many mis-remember who they voted for in the previous election? Pinches of salt required maybe and, in that sense, I think the YouGov may be nearer where we are than the ComRes. UKIP 10% ahead? Hmmm, as they say Hmmm-land.

    The Scottish Independence polls don’t surprise me and those 10-12% leads for No will take some budging, I would have thought, with barely 4 months to go before the Referendum. The tentative drift to Yes we saw a couple of months ago never looked like genuine political momentum to me and I think it may have stalled now anyway. If Yes were in with a shout we should have seen some neck-and-neckers by now, or even small leads. Minds more or less made up now, perhaps, and maybe there really isn’t that much to play for over these closing stages of the campaign? We’ll see.

    As for the Westminster VI poll showing a narrow 2% Labour lead, it would appear that we’re settling back to pre-“earthquake”* days again. Definite drop in Labour support, persisting mid-teen’ish scores for UKIP, Tories and Lib Dems more or less static. No real Lab-Tory switch going on, which would suggest the game changing; probably more a case of the Labour vote drifting to Greens, UKIP and, I suspect, to non-voting. Will it come back? Therein lies the key. Depends how many potential Labour voters are sitting on their hands, I suppose. Death is spelt if they get off their hands and go Tory. Swing voters, if you like, in old electoral language. But there’s the rub; we’re in new country now and old verities are for the birds, in my view. The prize may go eventually to he who can enthuse the disillusioned. Nige ahead in that race so far.

    * earthquake as in two polls (one of which was an Ashcroft poll based on 500 respondents) showing a narrow Tory lead. Oh, and an ICM thrown in to do what it always does; provide its monthly addition to the overall gaiety of the nation! :-)

  47. Couper2802

    “The real reason is, of course, he would get beat in the debate no one doubts that.”

    You forgot IMO. I for one doubt that Cameron would lose such a debate. He’s talking to the people of Scotland not to Alex Samond.

  48. @Chris Riley

    Thank you for your interesting comment.

  49. @TOH

    DC has been talking to Scotland the last two days – let’s how the referendum polls move next week and let’s see how many Tory MEPs are elected on Thursday.

  50. Oops… apologies to Sir Alan Beith and the people of Berwick-upon-Tweed! Point still stands though re Ming Campbell and Sir Malcolm Bruce.

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