Go now?

The Sunday Express’s front page reports a new ICM poll asking if Tony Blair should now step down. The poll includes questions on the casino decision and the investigation into loans-for-honours which I’ll look at when the actual tables appear on ICM’s website. Until then, the topline figures are that 56% of the public think Tony Blair should stand down now, including 43% of Labour supporters.

For all the Sunday Express’s hyperbole, this isn’t actually much of difference from past polls. Populus asked questions on when Tony Blair should step down quite regularly last year – in September they found that 51% of respondents thought that Tony Blair should step down either “now” or by the end of 2006, including 30% of Labour voters (which might well be somewhat different from Labour supporters). Now 2006 is over, 56% of people thinking that Tony Blair should step down now isn’t much of a surprise, it’s pretty much what they told us last year.

On an unrelated matter, Rallings and Thrasher have release the “official” notional figures for the new electoral boundaries which will be used by the media at the next election. Detailled figures for each seat don’t seem to be available anywhere yet. Meanwhile, you can see my notional figures for each seat on the UK Polling Report Election Guide.

UPDATE: Unlike Martin Baxter’s notional figures, which use a slightly different formula for translating local election votes into notional general election votes, the Rallings and Thrasher figures use a methodology that is almost identical to the one I used (the main differences are that when using local election results they take the average vote of each party, when I use the highest vote, and they give higher notional votes to parties that returned councillors uncontested, and lower notional votes to parties that didn’t contest wards). Hence, while I’m sure there will be lots of seats where the notional majories are different, overall the two sets of notional results are very similar. There are only 6 seats where the notional 2005 winners are different under the Wells or Rallings & Thrasher projections: I have the Conservatives winning Gillingham, Rugby and Portsmouth North, Rallings & Thrasher have these as notional Labour seats; I have the Conservatives winning Somerton & Frome, Rallings & Thrasher have this as a notional Lib Dem seat; I have the Lib Dems winning Rochdale and Oxford East, Rallings and Thrasher have these as notional Labour seats.

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