We have two new voting intention polls today. First is a telephone poll from ComRes for the Daily Mail – topline figures are CON 38%(-1), LAB 33%(+3), LDEM 8%(-1), UKIP 10%(-2), GRN 3%(-1). Since introducing their new turnout model based on socio-economic factors ComRes have tended to show the biggest leads for the Conservative party, typically around twelve points, so while this poll is pretty similar to the sort of Conservative leads that MORI, ICM, YouGov and Opinium have recorded over the last month, compared to previous ComRes polls it represents a narrowing of the Conservative lead. Full tabs are here.

The second new poll is from BMG research, a company that conducted a couple of voting intention polls just before the general election for the May2015 website, but hasn’t released any voting intention figures since then. Their topline figures are CON 37%, LAB 31%, LDEM 6%, UKIP 15%, GRN 5%. BMG have also adopted a methodology including socio-economic factors – specifically, people who don’t give a firm voting intention but who say they are leaning towards voting for a party (a “squeeze question”) or who do say how they voted last time are included in the final figures, but weighted according to age, with younger people being weighted harshly downwards. Full tabs are here.

BMG also asked voting intention in the European refrendum, with headline figures of Remain 52%, Leave 48%. ICM also released their regular EU referedum tracker earlier in the week, which had toplines of Remain 54%, Leave 46%. A third EU referendum poll from YouGov found it 50%-50% – though note that poll did not use the actual referendum question (YouGov conduct a monthly poll across all seven European countries they have panels in, asking the same questions to all seven countries and including a generic question on whether people would like their own country to remain in the EU – this is that question, rather than a specific British EU referendum poll, where YouGov do use the referendum question).


240 Responses to “New ComRes and BMG voting intentions”

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  1. Good afternoon all from central London.

    Both Tories and Labour stuck well below 40%. Not much to shout about as both appear to be unpopular with the vast majority of the public.

    Moving onto the EU referendum… It does appear the shift is towards getting the hell out of the 28 state vanity project but I’m getting extremely confused with David Cameron’s stance.

    In one hand he want’s a vote on the UK’s membership.

    In another he rules nothing out if he thinks the negotiations haven’t delivered.

    In yet another hand he warns that life outside the EU has drawbacks even over immigration. (Norway was used as an example)

    Does he think he’s an octopus with all them hands?

  2. Allan Christie

    The usual thing here is to talk about polling, not to make partisan points about your preferred outcome.
    I don’t recall there being any questions in recent polls about Cameron being an octopus or not.

  3. If the ComRes poll were conducted on the old pre-GE methodology would it now be showing a healthy Labour lead? I suspect so.

    How times have changed!

  4. @Tony Dean

    Before adjustments for turnout etc Comres is an exact tie at 35.7% for Con and Lab.

  5. ALUN
    Allan Christie

    “The usual thing here is to talk about polling”
    ______

    Yes that’s correct but I didn’t see any evidence of this in your comment .

  6. Allan,

    “Not much to shout about as both appear to be unpopular with the vast majority of the public.”

    This poll shows the Tories and Labour to be popular with 71% of the public.

  7. Mr N

    Surely “Tories orLabour to be popular with 71% of the public.”

  8. MRNAMELESS

    I’m talking about the Tories and Labour as single separate entities and their woeful poll ratings but if you prefer to have them as a single combined entity then you can explain that the next time you go on foot patrol for Labour. ‘-)

  9. For what it’s worth, which is not very much when looking at voting intention opinion polls taken 6 months after an election and six months before any others are due take place, these latest two from ComRes and BMG aren’t too bad for Labour. There’s no sign of any Lib Dem revival when one might of been expected now that they’re under new leadership and free from any coalition contamination and, in one of the polls at least, UKIP and the Greens are slipping from their recent highs.

    Considering they’re still in a political honeymoon period after the election of the first majority Tory Government for nigh on a quarter of a century, I’m not sure the Tories would be particularly pleased with 5-6% leads against an enfeebled opposition, still flinching from an electoral mauling and soul-wrestling with the Corbynite ascendancy.

    This may be the only crumb of comfort for a still demoralised Labour Party. The country is still stubbornly refusing to fall in love with the Tories.

  10. I don’t think there’s any danger of anyone loving the Tories. Eliminating the deficit involves a whole range of unlovely and unpalatable choices, from pushing working people into poverty, to abolishing community policing. The chances of the world economy rushing to the rescue with improving growth look slim on current indicators. The wind is definitely in their faces, and if it wasn’t for Corbyn’s ascension to the Labour leadership I think I’d probably be betting on Labour in 2020. Certainly under Cooper or Kendall.

    However, by 2020 the public will have adjusted to the “new normals” and the Tories will go in as favourites. The main hope for Labour is that the tribulations create a narrative that sticks, even once the news agenda moves on.

  11. The biggest problem for Labour isn’t Corbyn IMO but the fact that the electoral system is now so heavily weighted in favour of the Conservative Party.

    Without a comeback in Scotland in 2020, Lab will need a lead of around 12-15 points just to eek out a tiny majority. If the boundary changes, as expected, do go though this time then this figure will increase further still.

    According to electoral calculus, under the proposed 2013 boundary changes a Tory lead of just 3 or 4% would now be enough to get a Tory majority (on a UNS). With a further update in the boundaries due in this parliament, it is difficult to see how the Tories can be anything but favourites in 2020 and the foreseeable, even in the unlikely event that the boundary changes are voted down.

  12. AmbivalentSupporter

    Westminster VI polling is (as CB11 pointed out) isn’t worth very much 6 months out from the GE – at least in England.

    In Scotland & Wales, it may also reflect opinion as to the GEs in 6 months time.

    So for your “Without a comeback in Scotland in 2020, Lab will need a lead of around 12-15 points just to eke out a tiny majority” there is some reasonable polling evidence that suggests that the chances of a Lab recovery in Scotland may be considerably less than some hope for.

    The contribution of the “ABC1″s to the former dominance of LiS has been insufficiently recognised, I feel. Indeed, the survival of the sole Lab MP was due to “Tory” voters in Morningside voting tactically for Murray.

    While, we will need to await further polling (like the YG poll currently in the field) there are indications that the “more affluent” Unionist voters are returning to the Tory fold.

    As Alex Massie pointed out “YouGov’s most recent poll reported that Labour has lost so much middle-class support that it now trails the Tories as well as the SNP amongst ABC1 voters. Across most of eastern Scotland, too, the erstwhile people’s party is now in third place. Meanwhile, again according to YouGov, just 22 percent of C2DE voters currently intend to vote Labour next May.”

    Wise strategists in English Labour should, perhaps, be concentrating on how they can create an alliance, across all 4 UK nations, rather than trying to recreate a position which depended on voting patterns that were created pre-devolution.

    “Heroic failure” may be morally stimulating – but, as a supporter of Scottish sporting teams, I can confirm that it sucks! :-)

  13. Tories justifiably suffering a Tax Credits Hit…

    But Labour should have been several points in the lead after such an intensive political and media debacle. So not a single crumb here, unless of the imaginary kind.

    All reporting on the day that Corbyn advances his ‘socialism-for-Scotland-if-you-vote-Labour “strategy”. Clearly there is a view that what happened in May and the last SP election really was to do with Labour not being left wing enough.

    We shall now be able to see!

  14. ROB SHEFFIELD

    “and the last SP election ”

    and the one before that.

  15. Rob S
    “But Labour should have been several points in the lead after such an intensive political and media debacle. So not a single crumb here, unless of the imaginary kind.”

    The number of people affected to any great extent by the tax credit thing is small compared to the voting population, and as has been pointed out, the majority of those affected won’t even be aware of it yet. If Osborne folllows up his hints with a toning down of the hit, there won’t be any big effect at all. We sometimes forget that most of the population don’t follow the news much.

  16. @crossbat11

    Conservatives would expect to dip in the polls around now, as they’re taking the opportunity to do unpopular things like tax credit cuts. Of course the public will only start to properly notice next year, and then the government will be annoying everyone with a referendum, and one assumes something bad will happen to the NHS at some point.

    So by 2017 the Tories should be pretty low in the polls. After that, there is plenty of scope for a rebound. If the Chancellor does manage to get rid of the deficit then he can go into 2020 with credibility AND enough cash for some popular government spending and/or tax cuts.

    Of course that’s the baseline scenario with no Events blowing everything off course

  17. Omni
    One Event that could affect things drastically is of course the EU referendum. Precisely how it will affect things is very unclear because so much depends on the campaign and the result.

  18. Policing could provide a bit of a jolt to the government pretty soon. It is looking very likely that most if not all of England’s police forces will be abandoning the concept of Police Community Support Officers and making them all redundant. There’s a good chance the neighbourhood teams will go completely. I expect around a third of the country’s police stations to close by 2020 (rough guesstimate). Added to that, the cuts are so deep that forces may literally be unable to lose enough officers through natural wastage to balance the books. The chief officers are currently considering whether to look again at a change to the law to allow compulsory severance of police officers. If the government go down that route, there will be a lot of blood on the carpet. And there are a lot of natural Tory supporters who will be quite unhappy with the whole package.

  19. I am increasingly puzzled as to how the turnout weightings on these opinion polls undertaken for mainly partisan newspapers contribute to the public good in non election periods. If their job is to take a snapshot of the public mood then surely the headline result should be just that – and if the ComRes poll is a tie unweighted as an earlier poster said then that is what the headline should be. The fact that when weighted according to turnout propensity at the last GE would show a comfortable Con win is of academic interest only as no election is due.

    My concern is that by publishing the weighted results of the polls week after week the newspapers are simply cementing a false narrative that the Cons are considerably more popular than Labour, which isn’t really true. That’s not going to encourage people to register and use their vote. I say this in a non partisan way because I can’t bring myself to believe that any respectable polling company would actually want to present its data in a way that will perpetuate the increasing pattern of non participation in the democratic process. We know from the Scot referendum that this historic pattern can occasionally be broken, and of course in a different context JC ‘s election also showed that you can get non participants re-engaged. Rather than just looking narrowly at their ability to predict actual Voting patterns, opinion polls should be considering whether that have a wider duty to reflect and publicise the actual state of OPINION. Isn’t that what they were originally supposed to be for ?

  20. Welsh Borderer, what makes you think that the polls are not reflecting and publicising the actual state of opinion? Voting intention figures tend to headline but they are usually only one part of a polling survey that asks participants a range of questions to gauge opinions about current key policies and issues.

  21. Russian airliner has crashed into the Sinai. Too early to draw any conclusions, but much of the Sinai is controlled by Islamist militants.

    If it’s terrorism, and if it’s some kind of response to Putin’s Syria policy (particularly if the Gulf states are implicated in any way) it could get very nasty indeed.

  22. @Welsh Borderer

    Like it or not, the media commission polls to get a sense of where we are at in the ‘horse-race’ – i.e. what would happen if there were an election tomorrow. That requires weighting attempts to ensure that. That said, I think past evidence suggests the gap between the weighted and unweighted shouldn’t be particularly big – though that might have changed post-election with pollsters trying to further tighten up their filters.

  23. @welsh borderer

    Exactly. I have made the same point on a number of occasions, and been comprehensively ignored. The point is that both adjusted and unadjusted figures are meaningful in different ways, and as you say the salience varies as to which is most important. Both should therefore be published.

  24. Might it be that with the down weighting of younger voters, lower socio-economic classes, the pollsters are fighting the last war and not the present one?

  25. YA Howard,

    I think they always are, really.

  26. It may be worth noting that the Tory lead is a fair bit smaller than at the same stage of the 1987 Parliament. In December 87 the Tory lead was circa 12% – the same as at the election six months earlier.
    I suspect that there is too much focus on Labour’s prospects of winning outright in 2020 and not enough on reducing the Tories to a level where they are unable to continue even as a minority Government. In a 650 House of Commons the Tories are likely to need at least 310 seats to win a vote on the Queens Speech. Pushing them back to that level is a very realistic prospect.

  27. Given that any poll of a practical sample is so small, it does require some weighting and adjustment to be made representative.

    Whether a model provides a result that is representative can only be checked against real elections. This means that a pollsters model is an estimate based on historical data and trends rather tha reflective of the here and now.

    It is possible that Jezzamania has improved the conviction of Labour voters to actually vote. It could also have led to fewer supporters. So has the likelihood to vote increased in a smaller population?

    It’s also worth applying a ‘sense check’ to any poll’s findings. I suspect that it is quite feasible that the Conservatives are ahead by a moderate amount. While Corbyn has been popular among left wing voters and the Labour Party membership, the PLP seems to have a minority who support him, and the rest is split between MPs who really don’t want him or who would want to dump him at the drop a hat. In short, they look split where it matters.

    The Conservatives have had a poor time over tax credits, but the bigger picture is that Labour is only just germinating it’s policies. They are a very long way from have a batch of policies that could be described as plan for Government. They may come in time, but it’s not here yet.

    Ken Clarke was on the radio this week, very relaxed, and saying that in 2020 people will look at who offers the best option for them in the round. The tax credit issue will be almost irrelevant by then.

  28. YETANOTHERHOWARD

    “Might it be that with the down weighting of younger voters, lower socio-economic classes, the pollsters are fighting the last war and not the present one?”

    Exactly what I’ve been saying. Applying a Miliband turnout filter to the Corbynariat shows a certain lack of prudence. I know the various polling companies will say “we should apply some kind of weighting and we have nothing else to go on”. But really it’s misleading. There should be clearer distinctions made when publishing between voting intention polls and election predictions. If you’e applying a turnout filter, you’re trying to make an election prediction. Albeit a weak one.

  29. @Graham

    310 seats will, of course, be a majority in the 2020 Parliament.

    @Lurkinggherking @Catmanjeff

    But of course a major reason for the error in 2015 was that the turnout filters weren’t strong enough. On the day of the election a number of pollsters were projecting on the basis of turnout in excess of 70% which, as we know, didn’t happen.

    There is absolutely no evidence that Corbyn’s elections means that the people who, after telling pollsters they would vote in May, then didn’t for whatever reason, will act differently in 2020. Indeed, I would say it is highly likely that they won’t. I know of no international example of turnout suddenly rising dramatically as a result of a change in party leadership and/or the emergence of new parties (don’t say Scotland, the circumstances were very different – the EU won’t politicise people in the way independence or not did).

    Relying on past non-voters is a dead duck strategy that is highly unlikely to get Labour anywhere. The fact is that whilst non-voters may be predominantly young, and Corbynistas are also predominantly young, there probably isn’t a great deal of crossover. Those motivated enough to care about the Labour leadership contest were almost certainly also those who would have had enough interest in politics to vote (mainly for Labour, but also for the Greens). Reaching out to people who give little thought to politics and are generally ambivalent to the colour of the government is a whole different challenge – almost certainly an insurmountable one.

  30. @Jack Sheldon

    There is absolutely no evidence that Corbyn’s elections means that the people who, after telling pollsters they would vote in May, then didn’t for whatever reason, will act differently in 2020.

    Of course there is no evidence, as we don’t a time machine.

    The only way any hypothesis on turnout will be proven or otherwise will be to wait for real elections.

  31. Weighting of polls can be justified by the use of reductio ad absurdum of the opposite case.
    For instance, if there was no weighting, and by some chance all respondents to a survey were from one group – e.g. unemployed, or stockbrokers or whatever – the results would obviously not be representative of the population as awhole, and therefore some adjustment would have to be made.

  32. @Jack Sheldon
    ‘310 seats will, of course, be a majority in the 2020 Parliament.’

    You are making the assumption that the boundary changes will be voted through in 2018. That is far from certain as there are likely to be Tory rebels – particularly from Wales. Moreover, by that time the Tory majority may have been seriously eroded following by-election reverses.

  33. @jack sheldon

    Absolutely right.

    The problem with non-voters is that they don’t vote. In the 2015 election there was a massive effort by Labour to boost turnout especially the young. Turnout was boosted overall – by a mere 1%. Turnout among the young actually dropped by 1%:..

    http://45forthe45th.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/45for45-Graphs-6.png

  34. Omnishambles – I wouldn’t count on that figure for turnout for the young.

    It’s based only on polling, and one of the main potential reasons for the error is getting differential turnout wrong between old and young, rich and poor, etc.

    Graham – I wouldn’t assume that Tory rebels will come from areas negatively affected by the boundary changes. It is by no means certain that the changes will go through, and I expect there will be Tory rebellions… but look to the awkward squad and those p’ed off with the leadership (which may be someone other than Cameron by then), not necessarily those negatively affected by the changes.

    For example, last time round Philip Davies said at the provisional stage he’d vote against the changes because his Shipley seat was abolished. In the revised proposals Shipley was saved, and Davies’s seat would have been just fine. He said he’d still vote against it anyway, presumably just because he votes against the government all the bloody time.

    I expect most middle-of-the-road Tory MPs who suffer in some way from the boundary changes will be brought into line with promises of selection elsewhere, moves into neighbouring seats arranged by peerages for those nearing retirement, etc. The problems will be any serial rebels who happen to lose out and who cannot be bought off… or any serial rebels who just rebel anyway because they hate Cameron or his replacement. As ever, it will only take just over a handful of rebels.

    And it needs to get through the Lords too.

  35. Anthony,
    Good points – and of course by 2018 the Tory majority may only be half what is now!

  36. @Graham

    I attended a presentation on the boundary review – given by the civil servant heading the English review up and Ron Johnston, the leading academic expert in this field – in Parliament on Tuesday.

    I don’t think you’re wrong that the affirmative instrument required to implement the review could be vulnerable. It shouldn’t be – in fact, I’d argue there shouldn’t need to be a vote. There is a public consultation and three drafts to allow particular local problems to be ironed out, and MPs could (as they did during the aborted review) raise concerns on a non-substantive motion.

    I am worried that this it is becoming quite political. Labour don’t want the review for obvious reasons (now compounded to by the fact that new boundaries make it easier for Corbynistas to ‘deselect’), but they’re starting to claim that the boundaries are being ‘gerrymandered’. It is legitimate to question the motive behind ignoring the Electoral Commission’s advice and ending the transition to IER early, but I think talk of gerrymandering is overblown and dangerous. As Ron Johnston said at the talk, it is likely that the number of real people being ‘wiped from the electoral register’ is really very few (and, of course, many (most?) of those that are will be perennial non-voters or people who don’t plan to be at the same address by the next election (i.e. students)).

    Of course, if Labour vote against the changes and are perhaps joined by the SNP (who never want to enter the same lobbies as the Tories and see abstention as weakness) there is a real danger. Lib Dems will want to keep their current boundaries for their eight seats. Welsh Tory MPs won’t be happy because there won’t be enough seats to go round. And then there will probably a few English Tory MPs facing not finding a seat, or finding that their local boundaries have been meddled with in a way they don’t like.

    Personally I would pass some amending legislation to get it back to 650 MPs. The rationale for the cut was always sketchy – it will only make the review more problematic, and I’m not sure it will be that good a thing for Parliament or MPs either.

  37. The current polls can’t really predict the next election because most of the people polled will have responded as though Cameron was going to continue to be PM. Political geeks know he is stepping down, but am not sure this has got through to the public.

    Conservatives will poll well as long as he’s there because people like his relaxed agreeable style.

    It will change when he’s gone. We don’t know who will replace him. We don’t know if Lab will replace Corbyn. Who the Conservatives choose will depend on who they think they are facing – if they are facing Corbyn, it’s safe to choose Osborne, but possibly not if Lab replace Corbyn with someone more attractive to the public.

    On the Lab side, they might not want to replace Corbyn till they see who will lead the Conservatives into the election.

    So both parties will be hoping the other side goes for the leadership change first, so they can calculate which candidate is best to counter their opponent. (I’m assuming here that Lab screw themselves up to overcome their sentimentality and get rid of Corbyn.)

    We might even end up with a situation where they both don’t make the change till just six months before the election (so the new leaders go into the election while still in honeymoon phase).

  38. @RobSheffield

    “But Labour should have been several points in the lead after such an intensive political and media debacle. So not a single crumb here, unless of the imaginary kind.”

    Are you sure about that? Labour should be several points in the lead? To call the recent undoubted embarrassment for the Government on tax credits a ” political and media debacle” might be over-egging things a little, I think, and recent polling evidence shows the public more or less evenly divided on whether the proposed tax credit changes should go ahead. A thread or so ago, Anthony shared some polling data on tax credits that revealed that adding up those who liked the changes and those who disliked them but reluctantly thought that they should still go ahead, brought us to 37% wanting the change to go ahead and 37% who wanted it stopped brought. So, we’re not in poll tax or fuel price hike country here at all and it’s certainly not an issue likely to turn polls on their head, not at this stage of the electoral cycle, anyway.

    In fact, all the polls continue to tell us that the Tories remain on the popular side of the argument on welfare and the deficit and there really is nothing to suggest in the current political climate that a badly defeated opposition party should be ahead of a still fresh and vibrant recently elected government that is implementing policies supported by many.

    I fear you may be too ready to grab any stick with which which to beat Corbyn. These polls paint a different picture to me and it is one of a government that still appears to be winning the political argument yet cannot convert this supremacy into significant popular support.

    My summary is this. Centre right in the intellectual ascendancy but UK’s main centre right party still stubbornly unloved. Centre left rudderless and defeated, yet Labour still in the game.

    Funny old world.

  39. @anthony wells

    Fair enough – is there any more reliable record of age group turnout? The information must be somewhere, probably something obvious I’m missing.

  40. Jack Sheldon
    “Personally I would pass some amending legislation to get it back to 650 MPs. The rationale for the cut was always sketchy…”

    I agree with that. I suppose there would be time to get another review through before the next election?

  41. @AW @Omni

    Those figures look quite dodgy. Whilst we know that turnout dipped from 1997 to 2001, and it is reasonable to suggest it dropped off to the greatest extent among the young, those figures suggest it went from 68% to 39% in one go. I doubt that very much.

  42. @Pete B

    Only if the legislation is changed before the review starts in March or, at a push, by the autumn (though that would waste money as they’d effectively have to restart). It doesn’t look like its going to happen, though I guess there is still time for backbench Tory MPs to wake up to the fact their seats might disappear (though I wouldn’t bet on this happening until the first draft comes out!)

  43. People need to take NeilA’s point very seriously.

    The tax credit thing is just a first squish for Osborne on the large wheel of running a surplus on to which he has tied himself.

  44. @PeteB

    But that’s a bit of a non-sequitur, isn’t it? I don’t think Welsh Borderer was arguing that there shouldn’t be weighting. His concerns were that after correctly weighting for an accurate population makeup they then proceed to downweight those less likely to turnout to achieve an accurate electorate makeup (and as we seen in this poll to turn a level positioning into a comfortable lead).

    In achieving what they consider to be (the best possible) accurate figures, they inadvertently lend credence to claims that the Tories are more popular, but I suspect this is moreso* our media’s fault than the pollsters, who regularly confuse the electorate’s wishes with the populations – and long-term falls in turnout suggest this will be increasingly inaccurate.

    *But by burying the pre-weighted & post-weighted figures in their tables you could argue the pollsters do have some role in this.

  45. Craig
    I understand what you’re saying better than I did Welsh Borderer’s post, and I take the point. However by using likelihood to vote, aren’t the pollsters measuring strength of feeling?

    For instance, suppose you have two people who dislike the Tories a bit, but are unlikely to vote because ‘they are all the same’ or ‘I can’t be bothered’ or whatever, and one person who will definitely vote Tory because he or she strongly believes in most of their policies, how would you report that? Surely to say that the Tories are unpopular by two to one would be misleading?

  46. JACK SHELDON

    “There is absolutely no evidence that Corbyn’s elections means that the people who, after telling pollsters they would vote in May, then didn’t for whatever reason, will act differently in 2020. Indeed, I would say it is highly likely that they won’t.”

    They’ll be five years older.

  47. Of course, it is also true they would be five years older if Andy Burnham had become Labour leader. Just pointing out that the people who said they’d vote in May 2015 and then didn’t, *may* be expected to have different voting behaviour in 2020, and I’d say there is at least some evidence for that.

    “The fact is that whilst non-voters may be predominantly young, and Corbynistas are also predominantly young, there probably isn’t a great deal of crossover. Those motivated enough to care about the Labour leadership contest were almost certainly also those who would have had enough interest in politics to vote”

    Whilst it is a reasonable assumption that anyone who took an interest in the Labour leadership contest is probably also someone who voted in the election in May, it does not logically follow that everyone who did not vote in May took no interest in the Labour leadership contest. Which is what you are attempting to infer.

  48. I’m sorry, let me rephrase that, as it didn’t quite come out the way I’d intended……it’s late :/

    Let’s try again.

    Whilst it is a reasonable assumption that there is a strong degree of overlap between those who took an interest in the Labour leadership contest, and those who voted for Labour in the election in May, the one is not necessarily a subset of the other. It does not follow that everyone who did not vote Labour in May took no subsequent interest in the Labour leadership contest.

    Or to put it another way, we should not assume that those who promised a Labour vote in the polls but who didn’t get to the polling booth on the 7th, suddenly lost all interest in Labour’s fortunes overnight.

    A Venn diagram might help.

    Or maybe I should have just said: your “probably” needs a citation. That would have been easier. :-)

  49. There is plenty of anecdotal evidence to suggest that many of those who have been re engaged by the emergence of Corbyn were non voters in May. Many of the new Labour members I’ve spoken to since the leadership election have been people who consider themselves highly political and on the left and failed to vote in May because they felt no one represented their beliefs. Some of those people voted Green in May and there is, at least, some quantifyable evidence that that (fairly small) group have been returning to Labour. As for the left of centre May non-voters, it seems the polls are not really picking up how many would now actually bother to turn out.

    many non voters are such, due to feeling unrepresented rather than for reasons of non engagement in politics. They looked at Labour and the Tories and didn’t like what they saw. Some now do. Probably not in their millions but they are there, non the less.

  50. Can I make a point about Scotland, and ask our Scottish experts for a response?

    I hear that Scottish politics has been energised by the Referendum, leading to greater participation, etc.

    Is it not the case that voter interest at the time of the Referendum was increased largely by the fact that people felt that their vote might make a difference? In FPTP elections, voter interest and turnout is low because so often their vote is irrelevant.

    I am interested in GEs and I stay up all night waiting for the results. But I can barely be bothered to register to vote in a constituency where the result is a foregone conclusion.

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