Today we have our three regular Monday polls and all three are showing Labour and the Conservatives within a point of each other:

Lord Ashcroft’s weekly poll has topline figures of CON 29%, LAB 30%, LDEM 9%, UKIP 16%, GRN 7% (tabs here).

The twice weekly Populus poll has topline figures of CON 35%, LAB 36%, LDEM 7%, UKIP 11%, GRN 5%. This is the lowest that any poll has shown UKIP for a while, though Populus do tend to give them some of their lowest scores anyway (tabs here).

Finally YouGov for the Sun have topline figures of CON 33%, LAB 32%, LDEM 7%, UKIP 15%, GRN 8%. The eight point score for the Greens is the highest that YouGov have shown to date, and only the second time they’ve put them ahead of the Liberal Democrats.

271 Responses to “Monday’s Populus, Ashcroft and YouGov polls”

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  1. Colin

    “No wonder we don’t understand your politics down here”

    We often find it hard to understand your politics up here too! :-)

    I think it’s often because people try to understand different political systems in terms of their own experience.

    For example, if you look at the SEG proportions in party support in GB (mainly England) and Scotland a very different pattern results.

    Party support by SEG category (from Survation polls)
    Con – ABC1 47% : C2DE 53%
    Lab – ABC1 34% : C2DE 66%
    LD – ABC1 72% : C2DE 28%
    UKIP – ABC1 25% : C2DE 75%

    Con – ABC1 62% : C2DE 38%
    Lab – ABC1 50% : C2DE 50%
    LD – ABC1 59% : C2DE 41%
    SNP – ABC1 52% : C2DE 48%

  2. @Valerie

    Thanks but of you want to understand why Labour is polling so badly in Scotland it might be worthwhile to listen. I don’t think either statement is in much doubt in Scotland ( although whether Labour actually had any good sense might be)


    “The SNP lead over Lab is – NE 42% : West 26% : South 21% : Glasgow as well as Mid & Fife13% : Central 9%
    and over Con is Lothian 21% : H&I 16%.

    That suggests that the SNP have not made deep enough inroads in Glasgow, Central, and Fife to gain all the sweeping colour changes that the calculators suggest”

    Possibly with Glasgow showing the SNP only 13% ahead of Labour (in the context of the national poll) the orange vote could be coalescing behind Labour.

    They do tend to stick together and share a lot of common ground now a days!!

  4. @OldNat

    Is there proportionally a lot more ABC1s in Scotland than in GB?

  5. Valerie

    You’re falling into the R&D trap and that’s coming on and finding fault with other peoples comments and not making any meaningful contribution whatsoever to the thread yourself.

    If someones comments are not to your liking then one, report it and two ignore it,

    However I’m not suggesting Couper’s comments warrant reporting but who knows a mild [snip] might appear. ;-)

  6. @Allan Christie

    I think it is the swing that is important if SNP are 13% ahead it must be a large swing as SNP polled low in 2010 in Glasgow.


    That’s true, including me some people forget a 13% lead can in fact turn out to be a 26% swing to one party but even at that the SNP would fall short of taken some of the Glasgow seats.

    I think!!

  8. @Couper2802 – Okay. The point is that you say that Labour shouldn’t have worked with the Conservatives even when they agreed on something, to oppose something they believed harmful. I jokingly suggested that you would refuse to work with the Conservatives even when the Conservatives opposed something obviously harmful, like putting your hand in a fire.

  9. To back up my argument from last night here are two relevant tables from Survation:

    Table 27:
    25% of Yes voters voted Labour at Westminster 2010. (35% of 2010 Labour voters)
    10% of Yes voters voted Lib Dem at Westminster 2010. (34% of 2010 Lib Dem voters)
    11% of No voters voted SNP at Westminster 2010. (18% of 2010 SNP voters)

    Table 16:
    10% of Yes voters plan to vote Labour at Westminster 2015.
    1% of Yes voters plan to vote Lib Dem at Westminster 2010.
    10% of No voters plan to vote SNP at Westminster 2015

    This confirms that Labour, Lib Dem and SNP in 2010 all had sizable minorities of voters who disagreed with their party policy over Independence.

    SNP have managed to hold onto their share of No voting supporters, Labour and Lib Dems have failed to hold onto their share of Yes voters.

    This explains the poll movement almost entirely. To win next year in Scotland Labour will need to find a way to connect with Yes voters from a Labour background.

  10. Couper

    I should have thought to check that!

    GB ABC1 39% : C2DE 61%
    Sco ABC1 53% : C2DE 47%

    That’s from Survation, I had assumed that they weighted by SEG, but it seems they don’t, so differences may be down to differential responses?? – though I’d have expected English ABC1s to answer more than C2DEs.

  11. @Chris Green

    I don’t know if you live in Scotland but there is a reason we only have one Tory MP. The Tories have been demonised in Scotland for a long time to Labour’s benefit. Note; I am making no point whether this was fair or not. Seats such as Eastwood (Murphy) and Darling’s Edinburgh seat used to be Tory. Labour’s campaign slogan every GE is ‘Vote Labour or get a Tory Government’ well Tories are obviously not too bad as they are, according to Labour, preferrable to independence.

    It is plain from the latest polls that the association with the Tories has not benefitted Labour. The trust ratings are abysmal with Miliband only completely trusted by 2%. Which makes getting Scots to vote Labour to put Miliband on number 10 much harder.

  12. @ac and couper

    ‘re Glasgow and swings, there is some speculation that Aamer Anwar, the prominent human rights lawyer , who joined the SNP last week , may stand against Anas Sarwar in Glasgow Central. If so, perhaps this is the start of a careful selection strategy to try to overcome the incumbency factor?

  13. @OldNat – “That’s from Survation, I had assumed that they weighted by SEG, but it seems they don’t, so differences may be down to differential responses??”

    It’s very difficult to interlock region quotas with SEG, or indeed with anything else. The reason is that region already has a large number of categories. Even if you only interlocked region with gender, binary age, and binary SEG, you would have 96 different quota groups to try to fill. You then end up massively over-surveying people from groups that take part in very little market research (young working class Northern Irish men, for example), and rely on one person for that slot in every survey (every quota group has to have at least one respondent in it in order to weight the survey). And that’s assuming you manage to fill every slot in a reasonable timeframe.

    So often region is not interlocked with other quotas. Often, quotas are not interlocked at all, but even when they are region is usually excluded from the interlocking. Obviously I know that you don’t recognise Scotland as a “region” of the UK, but for practical administrative purposes that’s the way it has to be implemented.

  14. @HIRETON

    I really hope this works imagine Aamer Anwar, Jeanne Freeman. Lesley Riddoch, Robin McAlpine et al in Westminster – how would Westminster cope? How would they cope?

  15. Anthony may as well rename this site Scotland Polling Report because it seems that there’s precious little about anything other than Scotland nowadays !

  16. @Couper2802 – “how would Westminster cope? How would they cope?”

    Probably about as well as Franz von Papen did in the same situation, unfortunately.

  17. Bramley,

    There are two exciting major new facts in UK politics right now-

    (1) How awfully the main two parties are doing on a UK-wide level, and how well the Greens and UKIP are doing.

    (2) How well the SNP are doing in Scotland.

    I think that we talk a lot on here about both (1) and (2).

  18. @Bramley – “Anthony may as well rename this site Scotland Polling Report because it seems that there’s precious little about anything other than Scotland nowadays !”

    Hear, hear.

  19. Bramley

    So you didn’t notice the poll? It’s got lots of stuff that will affect the numbers of MPs from different parties that will get elected to the Parliament of the United Kingdom.

    Lots of people are interested in that. I find constituency polls in England interesting, because it helps me understand how I might end up being governed.

    Why don’t you help the rest of us by posting about the polling in your area?

  20. Chris Green

    I wasn’t looking at the geographic crossbreaks within a poll. I took the data from a GB poll and from a different Scottish poll.

    My error was in assuming that Survation used SEG as a weighting factor, as YG does. I’ll now have to repeat the exercise with YG!

  21. OldNat
    “Why don’t you help the rest of us by posting about the polling in your area?”

    Whenever anyone does, it gets overlooked by the pages upon pages of Scots wanting to talk about Scottish polling & how dreadful Labour are doing & how wonderfully the SNP latest figures are & how magnificent Sturgeons latest fart was.

  22. @Bramley – “Whenever anyone does, it gets overlooked by the pages upon pages of Scots wanting to talk about Scottish polling & how dreadful Labour are doing & how wonderfully the SNP latest figures are & how magnificent Sturgeons latest fart was.”

    It’s funny because it’s true.

  23. @Bramley

    Talk about something interesting then i.e how are UKIP doing in your area do you think they are hurting Tories or Labour most. I can tell you how they are doing in my area badly but because of PR they might pick up 2 Scottish Parliament seats – that is 2 more than I would like but that is what you get with PR.

  24. Allen

    So my contributions lack meaning?

    The phrase beginning “people in glass houses…” comes to mind.

  25. OldNat

    In the Survation poll Data were “weighted by age, sex, region, 2011 Holyrood vote and 2014 referendum vote”. Although SEG data was used in the analysis it wasn’t weighted to, which seems a bit odd. They didn’t use it in the Mail poll I mentioned earlier either though they say they weighted to “household income”, which might be linked (their tables don’t show that so you can’t check).

    I compared the percentages for each SEG as in the Scottish Survation poll with the percentages that YouGov use as their targets for weighting in their Scottish polls:

    (these are quite different to the GB-wide ones)

    AB 14.4 (YouGov 19.5)

    C1 36.1 (27.4)

    C2 27.4 (20.0)

    DE 22.2 (33.0)

    So Survation seem to have too many C grades and not enough ABs and DEs.


    Thanks-I don’t get it-but then I don’t have to.

    The tribalism is extraordinary to me.

  27. Party support by SEG category (from YG polls)

    GB – ABC1 57% : C2DE 43%
    Con – ABC1 64% : C2DE 36%
    Lab – ABC1 51% : C2DE 49%
    LD – ABC1 70% : C2DE 30%
    UKIP – ABC1 46% : C2DE 54%

    Sco – ABC1 47% : C2DE 53%
    Con – ABC1 68% : C2DE 32%
    Lab – ABC1 42% : C2DE 58%
    LD – ABC1 53% : C2DE 47%
    SNP – ABC1 41% : C2DE 59%

    So not such big differences as from the flawed Survation data, but still compared with GB Tories, Scottish Tories are much more predominantly from the higher socio-economic group.

    Meanwhile Scottish LDs are much less dominated by ABC1s – though that might be because they are now largely restricted to rural parts of the country, where SEG classifications are more difficult to aply appropriately.

  28. Chris Green

    Thanks, but I just decided to use YG, since Survation does seem to have a problem with this, as Roger Mexico has pointed out.

  29. @OldNat – Sure, but you might want to compare against the ONS figures too to get some perspective on who is being undersampled. In particular, the ONS E&W ABC1 figure is a lot higher than in the Survation GB poll.

  30. Old Nat and Allen

    Hmm,.spare us women the lectures on what our posts should be about

  31. Patronising or what?

  32. Today’s YG repeats the European referendum questions.

    “Stay” and “leave” both now on 39% (stay up by 1% since Nov 2-3)

    If Cameron recommends a better deal (etc etc) then “Stay” is up by 6% to 58%.

    Not surprisingly, perhaps, much of that rise in pro-EU opinion comes from the traditionally most pro-EU areas – London and Scotland – though there also seems to have been a rise in pro-EU opinion in the North of England as well.

    Could that last aspect be a reaction to a higher UKIP profile in the North of England?

    It would be interesting to hear what those in the North of England have to say.

  33. There’s also a Survation poll of 1002 SNP voters – but maybe we should leave discussing that until after the contributions on EU polling in England.

  34. @Couper2802
    If you were not bothered about independence six months ago why has it suddenly become more important to you now?

  35. Opinium: CON 34 (+5) LAB 33 (+1) LIB 5 (-4) UKIP 18 (-1) GRN 5 (+1)

  36. Opinium

    Truffles for Clegg?

  37. I can understand the switch of Scottish Labour voters to SNP and also more pro-independence, very easily, and I can’t see why others cannot. As an outsider it’s as plain as a pike staff from where I am watching.

  38. Opinium can be a bit volatile (it doesn’t use political weighting) but for what it’s worth it’s a 24-year low…

  39. Opinium (Fieldwork 14th-17th Nov):

    CON 34 LAB 33 UKIP 18 LD 5 GRN 5 SNP 4 BNP 1 PC 0 OTH 0

  40. I find it very strange that people are complaining about other posters talking about Scotland and Scottish polls.

    Surely if others had anything meaningful to say about the English parties this place would no longer resemble a Scottish politics forum, so it is in fact we who are at fault.

    In saying that though, im just about sick and tired of reading all this stuff about Scotland.

  41. Why have these former Labour voters failed to support the SNP in the past if independence is what they really want?

  42. LD 5 minus 4. Good Grief.

  43. BlueBob
    I feel your pain, but the fact is that if the shift being polled the at present stays that way, it will have great significance for the rest of us, as it did in 1979.

  44. Graham – “@Couper2802
    If you were not bothered about independence six months ago why has it suddenly become more important to you now?”

    It’s because the oil price has fallen to $79 and he sees independence as golden opportunity to administer a severe shock to Scotland’s economy that will shrink the state.

    Forget all that lefty stuff, that’s just a clever cover for his real small government agenda! ;-)

  45. I swear I typed ‘at the’. It will be put down to my reading the Opinium poll just.

  46. @BLUEBOB
    If things go on like this in Westminster polling, I think there will be lots of chatter.

  47. Where has the Opinium poll been published? It normally pops up every 2 weeks in the Observer.

  48. I noticed another big immigration speech from Labour today. The Labour party does seem quite keen to break all ties with its strengths. First it was the unions, ‘reforming’ that relationship, then it was Scotland, which we are all well versed on, then it was embracing austerity and the tougher than the Tories on benefits line, now its the BME vote. Add to that the war against the media and you wonder what will be left remaining once they are done?

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