I’ve been tied up with boundary changes and having a birthday at the weekend, so this is just a quick post to catch up with some of the voting intention and Scottish Independence polling I’ve missed. Looking at Westminster voting first, I’ve updated the voting intention on the sidebar to include all the latest figures. Overall the Conservative party’s lead remains strong – most polls still have the Tories at around 40% and Labour around 30%.

The two most recent polls, from YouGov and Ipsos MORI, both showed the Tory lead falling a bit – YouGov had a lead of 7 points (down from 11), MORI a lead of 6 points (down from 11). In the case of YouGov, this is actually within the normal range of their recent polling (they had the Tory lead at 7 and 8 points in August too) and the MORI poll is probably at least partially a reversion to the mean after an anomalously high 45% score for the Tories their previous poll. Nevertheless, it may be a sign of Theresa May’s honeymoon continuing to fade.

Two years on from the Indyref we’ve also seen a handful of new polls on Scottish independence. The last time I wrote about polling on Scottish independence was at the end of July. Back then we had seen a couple of polls from Survation and Panelbase taken immediately after the EU Referendum that appeared to show a shift in favour of Scottish independence, but a YouGov poll taken a few weeks later showing no apparent change. We’ve had several more Scottish polls since then, including more recent polls from Survation and Panelbase, as well as polls from TNS and Ipsos MORI. The picture now looks very clear, showing NO ahead with no obvious net movement towards Yes as a result of the EU referendum (though as John Curtice points out there has been churn under the surface). MORI show NO five points ahead, Survation, Panelbase and TNS all have NO six points ahead.


464 Responses to “Catching up on voting intention and Scottish Independence”

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  1. “Their 1993 law bans all terminations unless there was rape or incest, the pregnancy poses a health risk to the mother, or the foetus is severely deformed. They’ve now removed those exemptions, so women are forced to carry a pregnancy to full term regardless. It’s the most extreme anti-abortion law in the world. Even Saudi allows termination if the woman’s life is in danger.”

    Just for factual accuracy the PiS bill does not remove the exemption regarding the health risk to mothers and it has not yet been passed.

  2. Hireton

    What are our values? Besides queuing (and even that goes out of the window in a crowded pub) I can’t think of a consistent set of values everyone in this country holds.

    Unless the poster actually meant “shares my values” and hit a few wrong keys?

  3. TOH & Peter Cairns

    If I can act as a referee for once, please consider the following.

    TOH: you have said that in your business career you often relied on gut instinct rather than factual analysis. You have shown that you prefer not to get into debate over your views.

    Peter Cairns: You clearly believe in the superiority of evidence-based analysis. You relish the to-and-fro of evidence-based argument. Hegel rules!

    So, clearly we have here two incompatible philosophies.

    I think you need to ignore each other.

    As I will ignore TOH’s endorsement of Candy’s speculative comment about me. (And his wilful refusal to spell “you’re” correctly, despite plentiful, freely available and incontrovertible evidence that using your as a verb is incorrect. That’s where gut instinct gets you… ).

  4. Candy

    We’ve got another one with no sense of humour demanding detailed evidence. They just don’t get it.

    Edge Of Seat

    “(Please don’t misunderstand, I am not defending the Polish government’s barbaric position at all, merely pointing out that you cannot simultaneously complain that EU members have both too little and too much sovereignty.)”

    fair point but I think she was just saying that the EU is a rubbish organisation.

  5. ToH

    Probably I have taken the joke about the Brexit a bit too far. I have the excuse though – the discussion here that has gone on here for a week.

    I could have added that the British position has now improved as DHL announced that it delivered a copy of the Lisbon Treaty to Boris Johnson.

    I didn’t mean harm, and what I wrote wasn’t personal at all.

  6. Candy

    I’m a bit confused.

    The general ideological stance you have expressed here seems to be close to that of the current Polish and Hungarian governments’. You seem to be criticising them. Aren’t they rightwing enough for your taste (abortion law excluded)?

  7. So overall it seems that the PiS proposed bill will bring Polish law into line with Northern Ireland law on abortion. Our excitable poster must feel devastated that the UK is in union with itself and that the Uk does not share its own values.

  8. Laszlo

    I wonder what happened to the “British sense of humour” and whether it will be restored after Brexit.

    I’m as guilty as you in getting involved in a little light parody (the fact that the caricature was recognisable probably means it was aimed at the right level)

    Now that I’m pretty sure that my long term future isn’t in the UK, I’ve stopped caring about the details of Brexit and pretty much only hope that “It’s funny”. With Boris in charge I don’t expect to be disappointed!

    It can be summed up as “How I stopped worrying and learned to love Brexit”

    The DHL thing certainly qualifies.

  9. @Hireton – “So overall it seems that the PiS proposed bill will bring Polish law into line with Northern Ireland law on abortion”

    Actually no. The Polish law was in line with NI’s but now has no exemptions at all, and further it is a criminal offense for any Polish woman to get an abortion in another country. In other words, Poland now has the most extreme abortion laws on earth.

    The question is why are you defending them? Is it a case of EU right or wrong, and how far are you prepared to go to make excuses for them? Have you any red lines at all?

  10. Somerjohn

    I agree to some extent, except that on occasions I do like to debate my views. I did that about my forecast of the result of the last election for example, many times, but generally I agree I cannot be bothered or do not have the time. I was very clear on how and why I post here I think you will agree.

    I think your correct about what Peter likes, but do not fool yourself in thinking that I always prefer gut instinct over evidence based analysis as I made clear in my 1.37 post .

    I certainly agree that Peter should ignore my posts, advice I have given him at least twice today. I suspect he is an academic and they can find ordinary people very difficult to talk to. My son is an academic ( cytology professor) and finds it difficult to argue with me at times but has learnt over the years that when we have disagreed I have often been proved correct by events, not always of course. We have mutual respect and interestingly although he voted to remain he is furious with those who want to overturn the decision.

    I’m afraid I cannot agree not to respond if Peter posts things I really disagree with, why should I anymore, than I would deny him the right to reply to me even though it seems to anger him.

    Anyway thank you for attempting to act as a referee I think that was meant in the right spirit and I really am worried about Peter.

    Finally if you had posted on here as long as I have you would know that i freely admit to awful spelling and errors in English. I have had mild dyslexia since I was a child but it has not had any real adverse effects on my life.

    Finally I agree that my endorsement of Candy’s post was a bit “off ”
    so I apologize for it. I hope that helps you understand my point of view a little better.

  11. Candy: “The question is why are you defending them? Is it a case of EU right or wrong, and how far are you prepared to go to make excuses for them? Have you any red lines at all?”

    It isn’t a case of EU right or wrong: it’s a case of EU not involved. This is a clear example of the freedom of EU member states to do their own thing, without interference from Brussels. And you have a problem with that?

  12. LASZLO

    No problem, I didn’t take offence as I said.

    I suspect you probably agreed when I posted earlier that it is a pity AW has allowed us such latitude. Brexit produces strong emotions on both sides. This afternoon must have been very boring for most who post here,usually I would be doing other things and I would have let it go but I have time on my hands as my wife is away recovering from a cardiac ablation and when the “cats away the mice do play” as they say

  13. @Somerjohn

    Actually no, the EU is supposed to be a collection of liberal democracies, and there are some things they cannot do, like torture, or violate the rights of women.

    The EU should be applying sanctions to both Poland and Hungary, as per the treaties – but arn’t. Instead they are rewarding them with money. Poland gets a net £10 billion per year in transfer funds.

    Your attitude seems to be “it’s important to reward them for their authoritarianism by continuing to give them money and allowing free movement”. And you seem to believe that only the British govt (which is excluded from summits) has any responsibility to stop it, while giving a pass to the 27 and their treaties. This is the difference between you and me – I don’t want my money going to people who hurt women.

    Your attitude is very much EU right or wrong. I suspect you have no red lines at all, and no matter how extreme they go (and they can go much much further, judging by history), you will say, they are EU countries, therefore it is OK.

  14. “The Polish law was in line with NI’s but now has no exemptions at all…”

    Wrong and wrong. It was more liberal and still does have an exemption. And it is not yet a law. Otherwise spot on!

    Furthermore I am not defending the Polish government simply correcting our factually challenged poster’s misrepresentation of facts.

  15. @Hireton

    The bill is at the committee stage and the committee is considering adding an even more draconian amendment to make abortion punishable with five years in jail. It is going through – and of course you are defending the Polsh govt by claiming it’s not so bad, it’s not yet through, ooh, look a squirrel. But it’s what we have all come to expect from you.

  16. Candy

    If you’re going to put bizarre words in my mouth, then put quotation marks around them, that’s getting perilously close to libel.

    I don’t believe only the UK has an obligation to object to what the Polish government is doing. It has the same obligation as the other 26 member states. I was simply pointing out that you expect the EU to adhere to a higher moral standard than your own government, which actually sits in the same political grouping as the Polish governing party.

    There is a massive inconsistency between your normal stance of protecting national rights against EU interference, and your lambasting of the EU for failing to interfere in this case.

    The fact is that if the EU disintegrates, leaving 28 countries free to revert to their worst instincts, we will see an awful lot more Polands, and probably much worse.

    You have accused me of being blind to the EU’s faults and “lashed to the mast” (whatever that means: I’m a bit wary of people whose imagery includes lashing). The EU is very far from perfect, because it tries to keep 28 very disparate members roughly in line. It doesn’t do very well. But the alternative is 28 disparate countries totally out of line: and we saw where that led in 1939.

  17. Carfrew

    I said Harlequins were rubbish this season and then i got the following result:

    Harlequins 17 Saracens 10 Ooooops!

  18. Alan

    “Now that I’m pretty sure that my long term future isn’t in the UK, I’ve stopped caring about the details of Brexit and pretty much only hope that “It’s funny”. With Boris in charge I don’t expect to be disappointed!”

    Very sensible attitude, having a sense of humour is so important in life. With your views, staying might not be funny but since your leaving why not. Boris is very funny at times, I’m not a fan and I doubt his commitment to the sort of Brexit I want. I thought it a very surprising decision by May to appoint him FS but of course he is very popular and to date an electoral asset to the Tories (from polling) although without looking it up i think his popularity is on the decline.

    I suspect May will make all the decisions on Brexit.

  19. The Other Howard

    Of course May will be making the decisions, Boris will just be the Front Man (until he is disposed of). I think his job for now is to keep repeating “Brexit means Brexit” and sound like he means it.

  20. @candy

    Good so you agree that the law is not yet a law and it does have an exemption which is a little progress. And you recognise that the NI law only permits abortion where the mother’s health or life is at risk so the 1993 Polish law was more liberal. Again some progress.

    I’m not going to waste my time responding to your ad hominem arguments and your completely bizarre logic. Once again you have posted inaccurate information in an inflammatory and inconsistent way which is exactly what we expect of you. Now go and play under the bridge.

  21. Alan

    Indeed.

  22. @CANDY

    “Actually no. The Polish law was in line with NI’s but now has no exemptions at all, and further it is a criminal offense for any Polish woman to get an abortion in another country. In other words, Poland now has the most extreme abortion laws on earth.”

    Personally I find abortion repulsive and disgusting, however this is going too far. Surely abortion should be an option if the alternative is the mother’s life being endangered.

  23. @CANDY

    “Actually no, the EU is supposed to be a collection of liberal democracies, and there are some things they cannot do, like torture, or violate the rights of women.”

    Horses of courses – what about the rights of the unborn children? Everyone is entitled to rights. Your neo-con liberal-libertarian philosophy is not necessarily shared by everyone, especially in central and eastern Europe where Christian values still mean something. Even the American conservatives are moving back towards a more traditional stance, with the rise of the Tea Party and Alt-Right.

  24. New Com Res poll about some trivia like politics and some gibberish about GBBO.

    http://www.comresglobal.com/polls/sunday-mirror-independent-political-poll-september-2016/

    Apparently, more people think that Corbyn won’t lead Labour to the sunlit uplands of victory, than think otherwise.

    Quelle surprise!

  25. Breaking news Doctors 5 Day strikes called off. It appears that worries about patient safety, splits among the Junior Doctors groups and falling public support over the action has had an effect.The Junior Doctors still oppose the new contract and have said there might be other action.

    Good news for patients,

  26. OLDNAT

    I agree, not very interesting and most of the findings very predictable at the moment.

    Never watched GBBO sounds totally boring.

  27. TOH

    “Good news for patients,”

    Indeed. So I’m glad for my family in England, though still concerned that their medical care is dependent on a system in which large numbers of hospital doctors are dissatisfied.

    Such poor relationships between staff and “the system” seldom lead to a better quality of service.

  28. Where does the expression “sunlit uplands” come from?

  29. Prof Howard

    Good question! – so I checked.

    Churchill used it in his 18 June 1940 speech (though he possibly nicked part of the idea from HG Wells).

    http://www.winstonchurchill.org/resources/speeches/speeches-about-winston-churchill/his-speeches-how-churchill-did-it

  30. Prof Howard

    Also, IIRC (which I don’t always!) Labour used a visual representation of the term in a 1945 election poster, with children looking upwards to the sun on the hills, and a glorious future – which CND then caricatured in the ’50s with a nuclear blast replacing the rising sun in the poster.

  31. ToH

    I hope that the medical intervention was successful for your wife.

  32. So, the Labour civil war continues, just moves on to new ground.

    At Westminster, the fight becomes (for the right wing) “OK. You get to be leader, but the PLP chooses the spokespersons for the Shadow Cabinet (and will use those positions to make yours untenable).

    For SLab and Llafur “autonomy”, it comes down to who picks their NEC representatives – the regional (I use the term advisedly!) leader or an OMOV decision [1]?

    http://stv.tv/news/politics/1367997-corbyn-calls-for-delay-on-scottish-labour-autonomy-deal/

    I have some sympathy for Dugdale’s quandary on this. SLab haemorrhaged support to the SNP previously, and are now losing a chunk of the remainder to the Tories.

    If you are an “insurgent” party (as the SNP was) you can choose which of your opponents to attack most strongly first, and hope that the other is so moribund and ineffective that it will be slow to respond, and can then be mopped up later. [2]

    If you have been, and have pretensions to being again, a UK party in power, that strategy is not available.

    [1] If the poll Laszlo linked to was correct, the SLab NEC member would be on the far right of Labour anyway!

    [2] Yep! It’s the Schlieffen Plan, but one in which the SNP followed the original idea “to keep the right wing strong”, at the beginning of the war. :-)

  33. Oldnat

    Thank you for the research. I am glad you didn’t tell me to go do my own googling (or something to that effect).

    I hear it quite a lot nowadays, so I just wondered who came up with it first. I wonder if Churchill came up with the phrase himself or if it was in coinage before him..

  34. I thought the most interesting thing today on the Corbyn front was him calling a mass demonstration against “Selection in schools”.

    This on the day his power over the Party became unquestionable. And its because this is his Comfort Zone ; his Modus Operandi . Its what he has done all his political life.

    It is possible to see the future through the past I think. First his use of email from Mary at PMQ. Then Momentum Leadership Campaign Rallies of a thousand or two. Next Momentum organised Street Protest on Policy Areas. His Policy Areas-Selection in Schools-Homelessness?-Zero Hours Contracts?-Inequality ?………..Trident ??-50,000………..100,000? -A progression of People Power.

    Then back to Parliament to wave this “Voice of the People ” in front of The Government. Indeed in front of any Labour MPs still deluded enough to think that they are required to excercise judgement or voice opinions on behalf of their Constituents.

    They are not. They are there-now-to be mouthpieces for Corbyn Street Protests.

  35. I thought the most interesting thing today on the Corbyn front was him calling a mass demonstration against “Selection in schools”.
    This on the day his power over the Party became unquestionable. And its because this is his Comfort Zone ; his Modus Operandi . Its what he has done all his political life.
    It is possible to see the future through the past I think. First his use of email from Mary at the Wednesday HoC Event. Then Momentum Leadership Campaign Rallies of a thousand or two. Next Momentum organised Street Protest on Policy Areas. His Policy Areas-Selection in Schools-Homelessness?-Zero Hours Contracts?-Inequality ?………..Trident ??-50,000………..100,000? -A progression of People Power.
    Then back to Parliament to wave this “Voice of the People ” in front of The Government. Indeed in front of any Labour MPs still deluded enough to think that they are required to excercise judgement or voice opinions on behalf of their Constituents.
    They are not. They are there-now-to be mouthpieces for Corbyn Street Protests.

  36. I don’t know if it’s the origin of the phrase but the opening of the Divine Comedy has Dante in a dark wood of despair wishing to escape to the ‘sunlit uplands’ (that’s the usual translation anyway).

  37. Prof Howard

    “I am glad you didn’t tell me to go do my own googling (or something to that effect).”

    As if I would! It WAS a good question.

    It was one of the great joys of teaching when someone asked about something that you had never previously bothered to think about yourself! Then finding the (or,at least an) answer was educational to both parties.

    I’m assuming that the author that I linked to would have found any other previous usages – but perhaps not.

    In the “uplands of the future” we may both learn more! :-)

  38. Maura

    Thanks!

    Prof Howard and I didn’t have to wait long before enjoying the “uplands of the future”!

  39. If it is Dante inspired I always think it’s a bit of an odd one for politicians to use because it takes the narrator a ‘hell’ of a time to journey towards it. Of course that was appropriate for Churchill who knew his Dante.

  40. @ALAN

    “What are our values? Besides queuing (and even that goes out of the window in a crowded pub) I can’t think of a consistent set of values everyone in this country holds.”

    ———-

    well no one else seems to mind storage taxes…

  41. Carfrew

    Can’t you just use “the cloud”? That’s what all the trendy types are doing these days!

  42. @Alan

    you can’t currently store guitars and synths etc. in the cloud.

    (well, soft synths mebbe, but they’re not the same).

    And I don’t tryst the cloud…

  43. or trust, even…

  44. @THE OTHER HOWARD

    “Carfrew

    I said Harlequins were rubbish this season and then i got the following result:

    Harlequins 17 Saracens 10 Ooooops!”

    ———

    Yes, given your positive outcomes in such things at the mo, conventionally one might suggest you invest in some lottery tickets!!…

  45. Carfrew
    Haven’t you got a shed?

  46. Thank you Maura. I am very impressed by your erudition.

  47. @Pete B

    No, there is no shed, and I am not gonna stick precious gear in a shed!! We have been through all this before….

  48. PROFHOWARD

    Oh I’m not erudite I just fell in love with Dante when I was about 17 and set out to read him in the original. The result is that I can manage, in mangled Italian/Tuscan dialect, useful phrases such as abandoning hope/lighting fires/and frozen hells but unfortunately can’t ask where the 28 bus goes or if the bar has a lavatory (items Dante bizarrely didn’t cover).

  49. Maura

    I think I might be a little concerned if “Abandon hope all ye who enter here” was on the front of the No. 28 Bus!

  50. Alan,

    “I think I might be a little concerned if “Abandon hope all ye who enter here” was on the front of the No. 28 Bus!”

    You’ve obviously never lived in Glasgow!

    Peter.

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