As usual for a Monday we have three GB polls today – Populus, Ashcroft and YouGov. In a election campaign that has so far seen polls that are virtually static these were awaited in the hope they’d shed some light on the impact of the Paxman interviews last week. In the two post-Paxman polls at the weekend YouGov had shown a larger Labour lead than usual, but ComRes had shown a larger Conservative lead than usual. The question was whether today’s polls would shed any light on whether there was any movement, or just normal sampling error.

Populus’s twice-weekly poll has topline figures of CON 34%, LAB 34%, LDEM 8%, UKIP 15%, GRN 4% (tabs). Populus have typically been showing a small Labour lead in their polls over the last few weeks, so this is more Tory than their average poll, but well within the normal margin of error.

Lord Ashcroft’s weekly poll has topline figures of CON 36%, LAB 34%, LDEM 6%, UKIP 10%, GRN 7% (tabs). This is a small shift towards the Conservatives since Ashcroft’s poll last week, but a two point lead is very much in line with the average of his recent polls, so is nothing to suggest any real movement.

YouGov’s daily poll for the Sun has topline figures of CON 35%, LAB 35%, LDEM 8%, UKIP 12%, GRN 5% – back to more typical figures of neck-and-neck.

Looking at the five polls conducted since the Paxman debate, things are starting to look much more like “no change” that a Labour or Conservative boost – there is a bit of movement in either direction, but no clear consistent trend. The seven way debate this week may have more impact, if it’s not just a complete mess.

Note however, that a lack of change in voting intention figures doesn’t necessarily means the interviews last week had no impact at all. YouGov’s weekend poll also saw a significant improvement in Ed Miliband’s ratings and this was echoed in Lord Ashcroft’s poll today. While David Cameron still led on most measures, his lead over Miliband had dropped across the board since Ashcroft last asked in February: Cameron’s lead on representing Britain abroad was down 8 points to 28, on making the right decisions when they are unpopular down 6 points to 23, on having a clear idea of what he wants to acheive down 8 to 19, on leading a team down 6 to 30, on doing the job of Prime Minister down 5 to 26. Miliband’s lead on understanding ordinary people rose 8 points to 12. Of course it would be wrong to necessarily put this down to the interviews, there were signs of improvements in Miliband’s ratings in polls before last week, but it does look as if he’s narrowing Cameron’s advantage.

Meanwhile there were also Wales and London polls out today. The latest Welsh YouGov poll for ITV and Cardiff University has topline figures of CON 25%(nc), LAB 40%(+1), LDEM 5%(nc), Plaid 11%(+1) UKIP 14%(nc), GRN 5%(-1) – Roger Scully’s analysis here. A new ComRes London poll for ITV London has topline figures of CON 32%, LAB 46%, LDEM 8%, UKIP 9%, GRN 4% (tabs).

Note that despite what you may be seeing on Twitter, there is NOT a new ComRes Scottish poll – it’s just people getting excited over a small sub-sample of 70 spitting out the sort of strange and outlandish results that are inevitable with small sub-samples of 70 people.


369 Responses to “Monday polling round-up”

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  1. Mibri. Indeed. If Clegg loses his seat he is out of the equation. If he holds his seat then yes he would as leader be involved in coalition discussions. The leadership battle would presumably run its course during the summer with the results announced in the party conference in autumn by which stage any coalition will have been agreed or not. It does raise questions as to how much command of his party Clegg would have during coalition discussions.

  2. @MIBRI

    The bedroom tax is disliked by Labour supporters and, by the sound of it, DUP and SNP supporters. If Labour get in they would be getting rid of a tax hated by the people who voted Labour and put them in power.

  3. @ Ken Smith

    Not quite. Lab are ahead of Con in Scotland (according to most polls and cross breaks) and so doing slightly less well (against Con) in England and Wales than GB Wide polls reflect.

  4. This may seem pretty random but I’ve been mulling over the many comments about electoral reform and the prospect of a second election in 2015 but it occurred to me nobody seems to have put the two together and come to the conclusion that whatever piecemeal government exists after May might shoehorn some form of electoral reform through and hold a second election under the pretence of providing the British people with a “more representative government”

    There is reason to believe that both the two big parties might prefer this. Labour because it would facilitate a miraculous recovery in Scotland (it wouldn’t really but FPTP looks set to massively underrepresent them in Scotland this time while under a proportional system they could hope to save many MP’s) plus it would boost the numbers of the various very left wing parties that will never support the Tories (bar SNP) notably the Greens, Plaid, SDLP and that new left wing Unionist party in NI.

    The Tories have even more to gain by effectively neutralising Labours relatively more efficient vote distribution, gaining significant ground in Scotland and Wales but more importantly massively boosting the number of UKIP MP’s giving them a strong right wing ally that would likely become the third largest party, all of this might be enough to convince the Tories to abandon their usual hang ups about electoral reform.

    Throw in the smaller parties who all support electoral reform (bar DUP and possibly SNP who might be having doubts about it now that it benefits them) and the fact that FPTP will have categorically failed to provide a stable government and one could reasonably conclude this really could be the last election under FPTP.

  5. thanks Mikey
    all eyes on Sheffield then

  6. Chris in Cardiff

    […]isn’t the Welsh Con-Lab swing smaller than the England one?

    Indeed. If you look at the latest Welsh polling – the tables for which are now available:

    https://d25d2506sfb94s.cloudfront.net/cumulus_uploads/document/e7erxqlrz8/ITVWalesResults_150327_March_Website.pdf

    the headline figures are:

    Lab 40% (36) +4

    Con 25% (26) -1

    UKIP 14% (2) +12

    Plaid 11% (11) –

    Lib Dem 5% (20) -15

    Green[1] 5% (*) +5

    Other 1% (3) -2

    Figures in brackets 2010 actual, then change. The Con to Lab swing is only 2.5

    Compare this with today’s YouGov figures for GB:

    Lab 35% (30) +5

    Con 35% (37) -2

    UKIP 12% (3[2]) +9

    Lib Dem 8% (24) -16

    Green 5% (1) +4

    SNP/PC 5% (2) +3

    Other 0% (3) -3

    which gives you a Con-Lab swing of 3.5. Labour’s fall in Scotland will mean the swing in England will be even greater and reminds us of the dangers of combining England and Wales

    As I said yesterday, the main difference is the way in which UKIP seems to attract a different mix of people in Wales than it does in England.

    [1] Greens only fought 10 seats out of 40 in Wales in 2010 but the other five Parties, including UKIP, put up a full slate. BNP got 1.6% from 19 constituencies, given there will be nowhere else for their votes to go, you could reckon UKIP starting point about 4%

    [2] A starting point of 4 if you include BNP etc.

  7. MILLIE

    This will allow some of the most hated Tory policies, such as the bedroom tax to be ditched, and for FTPA to be repealed.

    Only if Con & Lab both vote for repeal, and “come out” as the 2 wings of the establishment. I can only see them doing it if both think they can win, The press and broadcasters would probably be in favour of repeal, but a joint campaign for democracy could punish them both in the new election.

    A key component would be the Constitutional Convention that you describe. I doubt that this would go so far as Lords Reform, but it will certainly settle devo max, and EVEL, accompanied by local government reform.

    If it doesn’t include electoral and Lords reform, it won’t be supported by the Progressive Alliance, and I would be very surprised if UKIP supported it either. Obviously Con & Lab could agree and vote it through, but again it would be seen as the establishment “circling the waggons”. In any event, Lab are less likely to concede FFA for Scotland or any of the other home nations than the Cons are.

    The SNP get their desired outcome, which is another step on the road to independence. They don’t care that much about long term Westminster representation: they just want constitutional change.

    I suspect you’re taking much too long a view, there. SNP goals in the next HoC are likely to be:

    1. Win the 2016 GE and retain power in Holyrood.
    2. Accept any movement available towards FFA.
    3. Promote UK-wide schemes without Barnett consequentials which involve some spending/jobs in Scotland.
    4. Promote job creation schemes which do have Barnett consequentials.
    5. Achieve a 4-nation lock if an EU referendum is unavoidable.

  8. @Little Red Rock

    It might depend upon the result in Sheffield Hallam.’

    Why would Clegg’s survival be so important? That rather assumes that all other LibDem MPs are going to simply accept his views. I suspect that – unlike in 2010 – a good few vwill be happy to be seen to openly ignore them.

  9. Barb
    What’s FFA?

  10. @Barbazenzero

    The dodgy figures were highlighted by Mike Smithson. TNS have since taken down the tables but say that the headline figures (Lab 32, Con 33) are correct.

  11. In any discussion about post election possibilities, it’s worth bearing in mind that all parties are already coalitions of people with different policy priorities.

    They just happen to use the same electoral machine to get elected.

    However, they may well have a lot more in common with some of those elected by a different electoral machine than those in their own “coalition”.

    Much of Labour’s Campaign Group priorities chime more closely with many of the Progressive Alliance policies than their own leadership.

    http://www.newstatesman.com/politics/2015/03/john-mcdonnell-miliband-will-have-backtrack-spending-cuts

    A hung Parliament can create huge internal stresses.

  12. BristolianHoward

    Barb
    What’s FFA?

    —————
    Full Fiscal autonomy?

  13. @Mibri 1.02

    I do not forsee another Con/LD coalition.

    If the LDs form another coalition with the Tories then imo. they are finished as an effective party. They are already unlikely to win seats in the north and urban areas ( Farron will probably be an exception, but I see Clegg losing his seat). This leaves the SW seats and imo. They do well in these seats as they were seen by Lab supporaters as an effective opposition to the Tories. In the event of a second coalition they can no longer make this claim and would effectively be wiped out.

    Another reason why I don’t envisage another Con/LD coalition is the subject of an EU referendum. Already Farron and Cable have ruled out agreement on an EU ref.

    Finally, unless things have changed since I resigned from the party, it’s not simply the leaders decision, or even the MPS decision but requires agreement of the party. Even though many on the left of the party have left since 2010 I would still think that a majority of members would be against coalition.

  14. @peter bell,
    thanks for your insight
    is a coalition with Labour any more likely if as it seems the tories have the most seats ?
    I would have thought the Lib Dems would want a referendum as they always seem to be the ones up for selling it to the electorate.
    Are we not just heading for another election ?

  15. @Rivers10

    Neither Lab nor Con have any benefit to gain from electoral reform.

    First of all, though as you point out Lab would be under-represented in Scotland under FPTP if the polls are correct, proportional representation would decrease their seats in England. Scots make a tremendous amount of noise but they only have 8% of the population and 9% of the seats. It’s bad decision-making to make policy based on the 9% and ignore the effect it would have on the 91%. In this case PR would reduce Lab’s overall representation in the HoC.

    They are also not interested in boosting the representation of the Greens, the Socialist Workers and other lefty parties because they are all rivals. They are separate parties because there are very real differences between them.

    Same argument goes for the Conservatives – they are NOT interested in boosting UKIP seats in Parliament. Again UKIP are rivals and though they are also right-wing, don’t really share the same ethos and attitude as the Cons.

    Lab and Con are not interested in boosting other parties to get a an ally in Parliament, but to win majorities themselves.

    As for the stable govt thing – we’ve had minority govts before and the country survived.

    It’s a very bad idea to make long term decisions based on short-term circumstances.

    I understand that Lab in the 1920’s was keen on Proportional Representation, because they were a new party trying to break through. But they dropped the idea, despite forming some minority govts in the 1920’s – and gained handsomely from sticking to FPTP when they won a landslide in 1945. If they’d gone for the short-term view and PR, they might never have achieved any of the things they ended up doing (NHS, NATO, nuclear weapons), because under a PR system, they would have been out voted by the combined Con-Lib opposition.

    Same argument goes for Conservative govts. Would we have entered the EU under a PR system? Would the BBC have been set up (another Conservative achievement). Would progressive income tax have happened (the achievement of Robert Peel’s Conservatives, which played a huge part in reducing the national debt which had stayed stubbornly over 100% of GDP until Peel had his breakthrough moment in 1842).

    Pretty much none of the big breakthrough policies commanded over 50% of the popular vote at the time they were introduced because received wisdom tends to stick rigidly to the status quo regardless of whether it is working.

    And of course the voters emphatically rejected any change to the electoral system a few years ago. Respect that vote.

  16. Graham

    Why would Clegg’s survival be so important? That rather assumes that all other LibDem MPs are going to simply accept his views. I suspect that – unlike in 2010 – a good few will be happy to be seen to openly ignore them.

    If Clegg goes he automatically loses the leadership[1]. If he stays there will be tremendous pressure on the Lib Dems from the media to form a new coalition with the Tories ‘for the good of the country’. Clegg would be eager and those remaining would be very unwilling to split the Party even if they would rather support Labour or go into opposition.

    [1] Though heavens knows who takes over nominally as Malcolm Bruce is retiring. Presumably the first thing the battered survivors have to do is elect a temporary one.

  17. ITV/ComRes poll out tonight of the 40 LiS seats –

    “19% swing Lab to SNP”

    Hopefully, they’ll have drilled down to measure the differential swings between the former heartland territory and seats such as Dumfries & Galloway.

  18. I have forgotten what the odds were, but odds were being spouted a few weeks ago for the scenario, come 31 December 2015, none of Mr Clegg, Mr Miliband, and Mr Cameron would be their party’s leader – all three would be ousted.

    Thinking being:

    1) Mr Clegg may lose his seat, and go pretty much automatically, or else, there would be a coup de grace even if he retains his seat, as the survivors decide he was the problem.
    2) Whoever out of Mr Miliband or Mr Cameron is not PM come May, will be ruthlessly ousted by their party, or fall on their sword.
    3) Whoever does become PM, but in charge of a minority government is ousted by their party at the autumn conference for failing to deliver an outright majority, or is ousted if they have to call a second election in Autumn following which they are ousted as PM, and then unceremoniously ousted by their party as leader.

    Now if the odds on all three being sacked as party leaders by 31 December are > say 20/1, I will have a slice of that. Anyone able to tell me what the odds are and with whom?

  19. @oldnat

    Where are you seeing this? 19% would be a slight improvement compared to Ashcroft.

    Labour are technically defending 41 seats (Falkirk, of course being the odd one out).

  20. Roger Mexico

    Even if Clegg holds his seat his authority will have largely disappeared. Any Conference held to consider any deal could then be faced with conflicting advice from different groups of LibDem MPs.

  21. James

    ITV News tweet

    An #itvnews/@ComResPolls of Labour seats in Scotland suggests scale of problem facing Miliband if he is to become PM http://on.fb.me/1ov18Hl

  22. Full details of the ITV Comres Labour Scottish Poll comes out at 6.30.

  23. @oldnat

    Thanks. 19% would represent an improvement for Labour. Ashcroft generally found swings >20%.

    Airdrie 21%
    Ayr 20%
    Coatbridge 26.5%
    Cumbenauld 25.5%
    Dumfries 20%
    Dundee W 27%
    East Renfrew. 20.5%
    Edinburgh SW 22%
    Glasgow C 22%
    Glasgow E 25.5%
    Glasgow N 22.5%
    Glasgow NE 23.5%
    Glasgow NW 22.5%
    Glasgow S 23.5%
    Glasgow SW 25%
    Kirkcaldy 28.5%
    Motherwell 27%
    Paisley S 25%
    W Dunbarton. 25%

  24. CARFREW
    Yeah, you’re shifting ground there, like you did by switching to the press thing, dodging the glaring issues:
    The fact is that Lab losing seats to SNP does help the Tories, regardless of what the Cons sell to England. For a start, you leave out the fact it makes it harder for Lab to get an overall majority, regardless of any Conservative “selling”…

    Shifting ground how? I have never disguised the fact that I regard any government anywhere having an overall majority without a true majority of votes as plain wrong.

    In that respect, even the current Scottish Government’s overall majority is not something I like. It would be better had they needed coalition or C&S with the SGP, despite neither party having had any influence in the setting up of the voting system under which they operate and all constitutional power is retained by Westminster.

    And even in a minority administration, the fewer seats Labour have, the more likely the difficulties.

    Why should anyone but a Lab partisan think that is anything but a good thing?

    Lab get 34% of the vote but only 90% of the power? Shock horror?

    Saying that SNP gains makes no difference to Labour’s ability to survive a confidence motion glosses over the fact that SNP could nonetheless vote against Lab if they don’t get what they want.

    If that comes to pass, of course the SNP will have to be careful that Lab don’t simply resign in a huff, but I suspect Ed will have learnt more from the watching how the SNP minority government worked than anyone in LiS seems to have done. If he wants to remain PM of course he will make some compromises.

    Again, why should anyone but a Lab partisan think that is anything but a good thing?

  25. James

    Remember that both Ashcroft & John Curtice found a differential swing in different kinds of ex-Lab seats.

    Curtice estimated 31% swing in heartlands : 16% in others.

    The 19% is (presumably) the average swing, so we need to see a lot more detail before any assumptions are made about swings being “greater” or “less”.

  26. Carfrew

    Seems reasonable to suppose Cons might win a majority. Few percent swing from a good – or fortuitous – campaign, polls out by a couple of percent, and Cammo gets a few more years of date nights at Number 10.

    If you play about on Anthony’s Advance Swingometer[1]:

    http://ukpollingreport.co.uk/advanced-swingometer-map

    which lets you assess UNS separately in Scotland, Wales and (derivatively) England, you actually need to get to Con 40%, Lab 30% or so before the Conservatives get a reliable majority.

    The reason is that even the nominal small majority that you might get with Con on 39% say, relies on them taking seats from the Lib Dems at a UNS rate and Ashcroft tells us that is unlikely. What is more that also assumes UKIP winning nothing and no other oddities happening.

    Of course a minority Tory administration would still be possible, but even if they do win those seats off the Lib Dems that just diminishes the number of their only reliable potential partner. Anything is possible, but there are real problems for the Conservatives unless they ‘win big’.

    [1] Assuming all the errors in constituencies beginning with ‘G’ cancel each other out.

  27. I suppose it could be argued that Ashcroft polled pretty much all of the seats in which bigger swings are likely to be found. The remaining Labour seats are more pluralistic in character, i.e. they have bigger Con or LD presence (Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Stirling).

    The seats that he polled that are like that (Edinburgh SW, E. Renfrew, Dumfries) did have “lower” swings than the others (20-22 rather than 25-28).

    Even then it would be a bit better for Labour. Although the difference could be due to methodology differences between Ashcroft and ComRes.

  28. CARFREW
    Yeah, it’s not the sort of thing the ukip leadership are gonna sell: “We hope that by voting for us Labour will get in and crash the economy etc.”

    At least we agree on something.

  29. James

    We don’t know yet whether ComRes used SVI or CVI, so let’s just wait before drawing any conclusions.

    Comparing pears and pineapples by biting into the outer skin can be a painful experience. ;-)

  30. The interesting thing about Scotland (as far as I can see) is that you NEED a big swing for Labour to lose a lot of seats. The difference between a swing of 15% and a swing of 20% is quite significant, in terms of seats.

  31. CARFREW
    Assuming ukip get enough seats to be players in this scenario. Which is a whole other kettle of carp…

    If they have any seats, I think they would join the bandwagon.

    Their 2010 manifesto included fairer voting, IIRC

  32. ComRes have done “batch of seats” polling before.

    http://www.comres.co.uk/polls/itv-news-marginal-seats-poll/

  33. Is CVI and SVI the thing about whether you are thinking about your own constituency or not?

  34. @MIBRI 2.34

    1) IMO I suspect that in that scenario where the Tories (without LD support) were just short of a majority, then the LDs would offer confidence and supply which would enable them to support the government on those issue with which they agreed but to vote against the Tories on any issues which were contrary to their ideals eg EU.

    2) On the EU ref, senior LDs including Farron, Cable and Davey have said they would not support a ref at this time. I suspect that it is because they see the possibility of a NO vote (due to UKIP, right wing Tories and the right wing press) and as firm believers in the benefits of the EU are not prepared to take a chance.

    3) Hopefully we are not heading for another election. It would effectively need to Lab and Con agreeing to such a change in the law and I don’t see this happening. In addition, there is no reason why minority government can’t work. It worked in Scotland before the SNP gained an overall majority and it works in various ways across Europe. If there is a second election, in say 12 months time, then I would not be surprised if the result was even more fragmentation. Voters in general are unhappy with the major parties and I can foresee the “minor” parties gaining a stronger foothold as time goes on.

  35. @profhoward

    Exactly. Ashcroft polls ask the standard (SVI) question first, then ask for your intention after thinking about candidates in your seat (CVI). He uses the CVI as headline figures.

    Forecasting sites such as Election Forecast also use the CVI data (rather than SVI) for updating / comparing with their systems. This latter point is a little dubious since there hasn’t been much (if any) empirical testing as to which of the two is more accurate.

  36. ProfHoward

    Yes. I think a bone of contention is how they are asked. SVI (standard voting intention) followed by a CVI (constituency voting intention) question might induce people to “go for a switch” which might not be picked up with a CVI alone.

    I’m not great at keeping track of this stuff (please correct me if I’m barking up the wrong end of the stick) but I think Ashcroft does a SVI followed by a CVI coupled with phone polling?

    If so, it seems like a recipe for wanting to impress a phone polling agent with how smart and sophisticated you are with your vote. Or just giving a slightly more interesting answer.

    The number of times I’ve gone along with a phone survey just to end up saying No, No, No… in a monotone voice as they drivel on through a range of questions that I really couldn’t care about. That’s felt marginally awkward. So I can see people might be pushed that way.

    I’m hopeful they will have done testing on that methodology to make sure it doesn’t create a bias where one doesn’t exist on the ground.

  37. RIVERS10
    This may seem pretty random but I’ve been mulling over the many comments about electoral reform and the prospect of a second election in 2015 but it occurred to me nobody seems to have put the two together and come to the conclusion that whatever piecemeal government exists after May might shoehorn some form of electoral reform through and hold a second election under the pretence of providing the British people with a “more representative government”

    Good post, but I suspect you’re wrong both about Con’s willingness to consider it and SNP not wanting it.

    I can imagine the SNP wanting to think twice about retaining STV for councils given some of the Con/Lab councils which have arisen in places where SNP had most votes, but especially if the Jenkins AV+ ideas are put on offer I can’t see them doing an about turn on fairer voting.

  38. Thank you Alan and James.

  39. @BARBA

    “Shifting ground how? I have never disguised the fact that I regard any government anywhere having an overall majority without a true majority of votes as plain wrong.
    In that respect, even the current Scottish Government’s overall majority is not something I like. It would be better had they needed coalition or C&S with the SGP, despite neither party having had any influence in the setting up of the voting system under which they operate and all constitutional power is retained by Westminster.”

    ————–

    Yep, shifting ground, and you’re shifting it again. I was simply pointing out ways you had omitted that the SNP taking votes off Labour can hamper them in governmental terms. Unable to challenge that you are shifting to whether the electoral system we have is a good thing or not. Which is another great big kettle of carp right there. You might want to refer back to the many discussions we have had on the matter…

  40. @ Graham at 2:06

    “Why would Clegg’s survival be so important? That rather assumes that all other LibDem MPs are going to simply accept his views. ”

    I am assuming the opposite. Cleggers trying to lead the Lib Dems through the Tory Lobby might result in a split whereas Farron trying to lead them through the Labour lobby (or abstaining) might not.

    So whether NC is in place will be important

  41. @Barba

    “And even in a minority administration, the fewer seats Labour have, the more likely the difficulties.”

    “Why should anyone but a Lab partisan think that is anything but a good thing?”

    ————–

    But we weren’t discussing whether it was a good thing, we were discussing what was possible. Like, we could discuss whether the England Test team will beat the Windies or not in a couple of weeks, but whether it is a good thing if they do is a shift to summat else.

    Whether it is a good thing or not does not eradicate your error. It’s just a change of subject to distract from the error with a provocation about partisanship thrown in.

  42. BRISTOLIANHOWARD
    What’s FFA?

    PAUL
    Full Fiscal autonomy?

    Yes. Like Greenland wrt Denmark.

    That’s close to what was on offer in the Home Rule bills for Ireland & Scotland which never came into effect partly by Unionist opposition and partly by WW1.

  43. JAMES
    The dodgy figures were highlighted by Mike Smithson. TNS have since taken down the tables but say that the headline figures (Lab 32, Con 33) are correct.

    Thanks. May be worth looking at the TNS site tonight.

  44. YouGov/Evening Standard (London)

    CON 34 (+2)
    LAB 45 (+1)
    LIB 8 (+1)
    UKIP 8 (-2)
    GRN 4 (-1)

    http://www.standard.co.uk/news/politics/general-election-2015-support-for-labour-and-tories-rises-in-london-poll-reveals-10145900.html

  45. Alan

    I think a bone of contention is how they are asked. SVI (standard voting intention) followed by a CVI (constituency voting intention) question might induce people to “go for a switch” which might not be picked up with a CVI alone.

    The point is though that it didn’t make a lot of difference in most seats, including nearly all the Scottish ones. It’s usually only when the Lib Dems have the seat or are very strong that we see a boost for them[1], including in the Scottish seats – though even the Lib Dems vary enormously in the help the CVI question gives them. If the difference was merely an artefact of encouraging people to switch, we should see these changes in all constituencies.

    In the Scottish Ashcroft seats we did generally see a small increase in SNP VI between the two questions, but it was only about 2 points. This can’t have been due to SNP candidates as they had only just been selected, if that. Presumably some people were registering that they would like to see a Labour UK government but with an SNP MP to better represent Scotland’s interests.

    [1] There are a few exceptions where an established MP or candidate had an outstanding personal vote (Stroud, Pavilion, Edgbaston), but most were for the Lib Dems.

  46. @Barba

    “If that comes to pass, of course the SNP will have to be careful that Lab don’t simply resign in a huff, but I suspect Ed will have learnt more from the watching how the SNP minority government worked than anyone in LiS seems to have done. If he wants to remain PM of course he will make some compromises.
    Again, why should anyone but a Lab partisan think that is anything but a good thing?”

    ————

    Yes, this sounds absolutely wonderful. The SNP will be absolutely wonderful in all respects, and won’t try and pressure Labour, and Labour will dutifully follow the wonderful example set by the SNP.

    But one doesn’t have to be partisan to consider alternative scenarios, including Salmond’s Scottish jig thing, and SNP determination to portray Labour as little different to Tories etc.

    Can you be certain that SNP wouldn’t press for things that might hamper Labour?

  47. @Alan

    “Yes. I think a bone of contention is how they are asked. SVI (standard voting intention) followed by a CVI (constituency voting intention) question might induce people to “go for a switch” which might not be picked up with a CVI alone. ”

    Just pointing out that (as I said earlier) YouGov did precisely that methodology (online) on me yesterday, which I thought was a first time for them (or them and me anyway). You might be right, but my money would be on CVI giving a better answer despite any ‘go for a switch’ effect.

    The Scottish situation is a bit barmy with Lab and the media saying ” vote SNP get Tory”, the SNP saying “vote SNP get Labour,” and the tories saying “vote Sturgeon get Salmond (and Miliband)”

  48. @BARBAZENZERO

    “Yeah, it’s not the sort of thing the ukip leadership are gonna sell: “We hope that by voting for us Labour will get in and crash the economy etc.”
    At least we agree on something.”

    ————–

    You keep changing the subject and we might find summat else!!

  49. CANDY
    And of course the voters emphatically rejected any change to the electoral system a few years ago.

    Unless I missed something they did not reject “any change to the electoral system“. They rejected one specific proposal, originally only in the Lab manifesto.

    Respect that vote.

    I do, and I think it highly unlikely that “vanilla” AV on Australian lines will ever be on offer again. What quickly became clear was the Con aversion to all constitutional change and that many [arguably “useful idiots”] campaigned against it because the change was too feeble, whilst yet others treated it as a personal vote of no confidence in the DPM.

    If I recall correctly, only the Cons in GB are committed to the existing plurality system, with all the other GB parties having had proposals for electoral reform in their 2010 manifestos.

  50. @Barba

    “If they have any seats, I think they would join the bandwagon.
    Their 2010 manifesto included fairer voting, IIRC”

    ———

    Ah, the voting system again. Of course, that part of the convo wasn’t originally about the voting system either. It was about why kippers might not mind Lab getting elected. You seem to have a thing about the electoral system…

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