The Sunday Herald today had the results of a new TNS System Three poll of Scottish voting intentions. The topline figures were

Scottish Parliament Constituency: CON 15%, LAB 29%, LDEM 11%, SNP 41%, Others 3%
Scottish Parliament Regional: CON 13%, LAB 30%, LDEM 10%, SNP 40%, GRN 4%, Others 4%
Westminster: CON 19%, LAB 36%, LDEM 9%, SNP 32%

65 Responses to “System Three Scottish Voting Intentions”

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  1. Peter, I have a question.

    Have you got nothing better to do than respond to blog posts?!?!?! Or does this count as your ‘surgery’ time?!?!?

    PS Please don’t point out any irony that may exist in me asking that question…

  2. Peter

    I have to say I agree with your analysis about the possible top Scottish Con Unionist vote in Scotland, about 23% does seem the most likely. However, if John Major managed 24.8% in 1992 surely this is still a real possible; not the most probable a grant you.

    And as for the SNP in post union Scottish Politics thats an interesting one. I have always found that a number (a minority certainy) of SNP voters say to me when out canvasing that they will vote Tory once independent. How true is this for other party voters? Is it not a very real risk that the SNP might find their base undermined after achieving independence?

    One thing to think about- I get the feeling that Goldie (my beloved leader) has taken to positioning the Scottish Con Unionists as a pro-union party, but more mildly so than stubborn labour or who-knows-what liberals; I feel she has expertly positioned my party for post Independence Scottish politics (in case it does happen).

    Thoughts anyone?

  3. Peter,

    Thank you for the response.


    Not just irony, but discourtesy too. Peter is one of our more cerebral contributors, and I for one value his insights. Just because he, like me, has taken up the burden of elected office, does not mean that his time is no longer his own to use as he sees fit.

    Cllr Paul Hodgson-Jones (Con)

  4. I am sorry, sir.

  5. Dean Thomson,

    Goldie has been rather less strident in her Unionism than recent Tory leaders in Scotland. There is a distinct possibility that in the medium term, the Scottish Tories will be forced to declare UDI by an English Conservative party pursuing the West Lothian question.

    Many Lib Dems are uncomfortable with the Unionist position currently in vogue with the Scottish party hierarchy, as it runs entirely counter to their Home Rule instincts and tradition.

    The real Unionist party is Labour, and that’s for the purely pragmatic grounds that Labour fear they will never win a Westminster General Election without the head start that Scotland gives them.

  6. Peter:

    You overlook an aspect of the SNP’s positioning that is much to their advantage and could be continued after independence and is neither Left nor Right.

    As they have developed from a campaign to a party of Government they have embraced a wide spectrum of views within the party by taking a pragmatic approach. Fundamentalists in both the large parties look to their underlying belief systems first when creating their policies, with little thought for the practical consequenses or even whether they are really needed.

    Back bench MP’s then have an uphill task to persuade ministers why their policies won’t work, and at the same time pretend to their electors that they believe the party rhetoric.

  7. Dean

    I think it depends where you campaign. In my neck of the woods, Labour comes out top 2nd choice for SNP voters.

    The full data set of theis poll is now available on the TNS website.

  8. While it is correct that Labour is currently pro-union of the parties in Scotland, independence could offer an opportunity to not only shed that title but to develop a distinctly Scottish version of the Labour party. The same applies to the LibDems.

    The subservience to Westminster pols and civil service acts as a deterrent factor in developing policies that would be supported by Scots. When they take positions opposing Westminster, they are blamed as fifth columinsts and get no credit, and when supporting Westminster they are slagged as sellouts who put London before country, and again gain no credit. It is a classic zero sum scenario.

    The SNP on the other hand gains credit when working with Westminster as statesmanike and also gain credit when opposing as the voice of Scotland. This is a no loss scenario

    These complementary scenarios clearly show why the SNP is growing and the others diminishing.

  9. Beans,

    Apology accepted.

    Paul H-J

  10. John B Dick

    Could you remind us all as to which parts of the SNP’s manifesto have been implemented and which have not.

  11. Does anyone bar we idiots care about a manifesto, even in the election time? No, name one normal person who reads it. No-one. We chatterers care as we think it matters but it doesn’t; and that’s for all parties.

    It’s the media perception which matters…

  12. Jack,

    There are nuances here.

    The full manifesto is read only by:
    – political journalists (Paxman, Humphries, Robinson et al)
    – party researchers / strategists
    – candidates (& their agents)
    – political anoraks
    – civil servants (in parts) to ensure that they are ready and able to implement the policies pertaining to tehir areas.

    Agreed – none of those are “normal” people.

    But what do matter to the media / public peception are general themes and some specific policies which are given prominence by the party itself – eg;
    – “no increase in income tax”
    – “a referendum on the EU constitution”
    – “education, education, education”
    – “the NHS is safe in our hands”

    Break this type of unequivocal promise (okay, some of them were rather wishy-washy), and your party is damned as untrustworthy.

  13. Jack

    Most people are aware that the SNP promised to abolish council tax,introduce local income tax, increase the number of cops etc etc -all in the manifesto.

  14. Can I ask a couple of things about this poll type:

    1. is it slower or quicker to react to events; actually showing them in their numbers

    2. Has it got a labour leaning bias in how it is weighed? Or more specificially has it an anti-Tory bias?

    Cheers anyone who can help!

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