On this occasion, the mainstream media do at least have an alibi for their grossly misleading claim that Ed Balls has "categorically ruled out" a post-election deal with the SNP, because it's true that he did reply to a question (asking if Labour would consider such a deal) with the word "no". The snag is that he then want on to clarify what that reply meant, and it was not in fact the conventional meaning of the word "no", but instead the little-known alternative meaning "Labour would like to win a majority". It's rather like asking me if I would consider staying in my current place of abode, and getting the answer "No, I'm hoping to win the lottery."
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SCOT GOES POP POLL OF POLLS
Absolutely nothing should be read into the drop in the SNP lead in this update of the Poll of Polls - it's just a quirk caused by the previous update having taken account of two full-scale Scottish polls, including the famous Ipsos-Mori poll. Those two polls have now dropped out, leaving a sample entirely comprised of Scottish subsamples from GB-wide polls (four from YouGov, two from Populus, one from Ashcroft, one from Survation and one from ComRes). That works against the SNP because YouGov and Populus typically downweight the party sharply in their GB-wide polls, thanks to the use of Westminster-centric party ID weightings.
Scottish voting intentions for the May 2015 UK general election :
SNP 41.3% (-5.8)
Labour 28.2% (+2.6)
Conservatives 16.9% (+2.6)
Liberal Democrats 4.9% (-0.6)
UKIP 4.6% (+2.1)
Greens 3.8% (+0.1)
(The Poll of Polls uses the Scottish subsamples from all GB-wide polls that have been conducted entirely within the last seven days and for which datasets have been provided, and also all full-scale Scottish polls that have been conducted at least partly within the last seven days. Full-scale polls are given ten times the weighting of subsamples.)