Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Coalition catastrophe was written in the polls

I was slightly bemused to see a post from Political Betting's Lib Dem (but Tory-friendly) proprietor Mike Smithson in which he draws attention to a YouGov poll from last May that saw Lib Dem voters revealing by a margin of 4-1 that they would be "dismayed" if a Tory-Lib Dem coalition was formed. Smithson goes on to ask -

"Was the LD collapse all predicted in pre-election polls? Is the amazing thing that the yellows are not doing worse?"

Glossing over the obvious point that it's truly amazing that anyone thinks the Lib Dems could actually be doing any worse than they are, the first thing that popped into my mind is that Mr Smithson spent much of the period from 2007 to 2010 excoriating Labour for having failed to take heed of the crystal-clear polling evidence that had suggested all along that a Brown premiership would lead them to calamity. I'm wondering, therefore, why he didn't take his own advice on that fateful day last May when he wrote a post saying that he feared his party would be making a terrible error if they didn't opt to go with the Conservatives? It should never, in any case, have been that much of a revelation to learn that the Tory-leaning Clegg/Laws tendency was not remotely representative of the party's support at large.

Richard Nabavi also adds his two penn'orth on Mr Smithson's post -

"If those 43% didn’t want a LibDem/Con coalition, why the hell did they vote LibDem? Were they perhaps hoping for a majority LibDem government?"

You've gotta love PB. It seems the only two possible outcomes for the Lib Dems were majority government or a full coalition with the Tories. Aye, whatever.


  1. Is Gordon Brown going to be part of Labour's Holyrood campaign?

  2. I think 'no' is the short answer to that! He'll probably have some nominal involvement, but I'd be amazed if they push him to the forefront.