Wednesday, January 21, 2015

The point of no return? Earth-shaking TELEPHONE poll from Ipsos-Mori gives the SNP an astonishing 28% lead with just weeks to go

It's hard to believe, but Ipsos-Mori have almost exactly replicated the result of their full-scale poll of three months ago, which so many people assumed to be an extreme outlier.

Scottish voting intentions for the May 2015 UK general election (Ipsos-Mori, 12th-19th January) :

SNP 52% (n/c)
Labour 24% (+1)
Conservatives 12% (+2)
Greens 4% (-2)
Liberal Democrats 4% (-2)
UKIP 1% (-1)

In spite of the fact that Ipsos-Mori are one of the UK's leading pollsters (arguably only ICM have a better pedigree), there's a tendency to assume that these numbers "cannot possibly be right", simply because they would produce such an unprecedented political earthquake if they were repeated in the general election.  People are therefore speculatively casting around for reasons why Ipsos-Mori "must" be wrong.  One theory doing the rounds is that their failure to weight by recalled referendum vote is the culprit.  Well, Ipsos-Mori don't weight by any sort of recalled vote - not Holyrood, not Westminster, not referendum.  So it cuts both ways, doesn't it?  Their referendum polls showing much bigger No leads than most other firms also had to be seen in that light, and yet their final poll showing Yes 47%, No 53% was pretty close to the mark.  Indeed, it may have been absolutely bang on the money, because we have some proof of a very late on-the-day swing back to No.  So there's no concrete evidence from recent Scottish polls that a failure to weight by recalled vote leads to inaccuracy.

A much, much sillier theory comes courtesy of (predictably enough) Mike Smithson, who seems to think the 'problem' is that Ipsos-Mori's call centre is based in Edinburgh, and that much of their fieldwork is therefore presumably carried out by people with Scottish accents.  I mean, where to begin?  It's NORMAL for telephone polling to be carried out by people with accents that are familiar to respondents.  It's when you diverge from that normal practice that there is cause for concern - for example, you wouldn't have had a French call centre conducting polls for the 2004 US presidential election, in case respondents were too embarrassed to tell a French interviewer that they were planning to vote for George Bush.  Scottish respondents are more likely to be honest about their voting intention when speaking to a Scottish caller, because it avoids any slight stigma that might otherwise be attached to an admission of voting SNP.  I cannot see the remotest basis for Smithson's belief that anti-independence respondents would be more honest with a non-Scottish interviewer - how does he square that with Ipsos-Mori being one of the most No-friendly firms during the referendum, for example?

This poll also takes a sledgehammer to Nick Sparrow's eccentric (and some would say downright cynical) insinuation that artificial momentum is being generated for the SNP as a result of misleading online polling.  Leaving aside a Survation poll that was conducted just after people voted on 18th/19th September, we've now had two telephone polls since the referendum, and both have shown much larger SNP leads than any online poll.

118 comments:

  1. There are 15 weeks to go to be precise (a little under four months).

    You don't write headlines for the Sun do you?

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    1. Aye, the iref is increasingly a 'distant memory'. We're close to the election now than we are to it.

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    2. "You don't write headlines for the Sun do you?"

      You must be new here.

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  2. Daily Record PressmanJanuary 21, 2015 at 2:12 PM

    Time is running out for us. Only 15 weeks to go, just over 3 months and Murphy has botched things up.

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  3. waiting on daily record VOW 11

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    1. expecting another ten vows. #notsurprised

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  4. It's one poll. You have to look at long term averages and trends. The most prolific pollster, YouGov, shows an average of SNP 41%, Labour 27%. Given the referendum result, it seems logical that the SNP has a ceiling of 45% support - some of which will go to Greens, Socialists etc. Figures of 52% simply aren't credible.

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    1. Polling lots of times doesn't improve accuracy. Also, yougov are polling Scotland at about the same frequency as MORI. Their last poll had 47% SNP. What you seem to be talking about is Yougov UK poll subsets which are not properly weighted to the Scottish demographic. They can form an indicator of trends, but a full Scottish poll is much more reliable.

      The high figures from MORI are due to their strong turnout filter. If that was less strong, you'd probably find the SNP number slightly less than 50% and very close to Yougov.

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    2. It doesn't seem logical that the SNP has a ceiling of %indyref_yes% support, because:

      The General Election isn't a re-run of indyref.

      Many no voters are Scots and want devomax and a strong Scottish representation at WM, rather than unionist British representation.

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    3. Oh, here you go:

      All giving an intention:
      51% SNP
      25% Lab
      13% Con
      5% Green
      4% Lib

      So the strong turnout filter applied does seem to have helped the SNP.

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    4. Also, many No voters were English, but that doesn't mean they won't vote SNP. My wife is one example. English-born and couldn't be persuaded to vote 'Yes' but she 'likes' what the SNP have been doing in Holyrood, likes Alex & Nicola, and it is quite likely that she'll vote SNP come May.

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    5. The SNP scored less than 20% last time. They achieved roughly the same in the previous few general elections going back to about 1997. If they doubled their vote it would be amazing. If they near trebled it, it would perhaps be a first in the world. Fringe movement to single party dominance. Ask yourself - is such a thing possible?

      And if 52% of Scots support the SNP and by extension independence, why didn't they vote SNP all along? Why didn't they vote yes in the referendum? What, of any substance, has changed from May of last year when the SNP got pipped at the post for a european seat by UKIP (I repeat, UKIP!) and now, when it looks as though they will win almost every seat in the general election?

      Either the polls are wrong or we are on the verge of something completely unprecedented in the history of democracy. Which seems most likely?

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    6. It is certainly seems unlikely that the gap will stay like it is in this poll. However, basing your argument upon the idea that all those who support the SNP support independence by extension is faulty, as others have mentioned. What about those No areas that have SNP MPs? Whether they will retain the MPs at the election who knows, but clearly they did not vote them in in the first place because all SNP voters support independence. So they must have other reasons. Similarly, the one reason that we cannot with all certainty claim that all Yessers will now vote SNP is that many make go back to Labour and there are complex reasons for this. By the logic you are employing, all Labour voters should have voted No.

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    7. One thing that has changed.

      Creepy Jim.

      This may well be the Murphy effect.

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    8. The SNP aren't interested in further devolution. Their reason for existing is Scottish independence. Would you vote conservative if you supported collective state ownership of the means of production? Would you vote socialist if you wanted more privatisation?

      Vote nationalist, get nationalist. They will try to bring about independence by hook or by crook. If you want enhanced devolution, who set up the Scottish parliament in the first place?

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    9. And what will your reaction be Anon. if the Scots electorate do as you say, and give the SNP an unprecedented majority of Scottish Westminster seats? As you say 'Fringe movement to single party dominance.' Head deeper in the undemocratic sand I suspect, but we may well see.

      'And if 52% of Scots support the SNP and by extension independence, why didn't they vote SNP all along? Why didn't they vote yes in the referendum? What, of any substance, has changed from May of last year when the SNP got pipped at the post for a european seat by UKIP (I repeat, UKIP!) and now, when it looks as though they will win almost every seat in the general election?'

      Leaving aside your ridiculous UKIP quip, all very good questions. I (and many others in Scotland) have plenty good answers as to 'why'. Will you?

      braco

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    10. Apart from expensive bribes aimed at the middle class, what exactly have the SNP done whilst in government?

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    11. "Vote nationalist, get nationalist. They will try to bring about independence by hook or by crook. If you want enhanced devolution, who set up the Scottish parliament in the first place? "

      Sure, but many No-ers have clearly voted SNP in the past knowing what they wanted ultimately. Will they continue to do so now that it (perhaps) seems more realistic that it could happen someday? Or will they feel that it still seems unlikely and that it remains safe to vote SNP if they otherwise like what they have to say? Who knows.

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    12. Daily Record Pressman January 21, 2015 at 2:49 PM
      Absolutely the Nat vote will fall between now and the election but time is running out for Labour and just the loss of 10 seats to the Nats plus an additional Nat gain of 6 or 7 L/D seats could be significant in the next parliament for Ed.

      SNP are toast January 21, 2015 at 5:15 PM
      You guys really do like to deceive yourselves, don't you? This poll proves yet again that the Labour party are increasing their share of the vote. SNP are on no change and Green are down 2%, so the pro-indy parties are on the way out.

      Scottish Labour are still on course to keep all their seats at the GE in May. The SNP are finished and you lot still have your heads stuck in the sand if you think they have any hope.
      -----------------------------
      These new satirical commenters have added enormously to this site's entertainment, but the true comic talent has to be the Anonymous who keeps asking daily "What, of any substance, has changed from May of last year[?]" (Today's effort at 4:37 PM).

      As for all the other new Anons, Red Tory HQ might want to consider that setting out to damage your opposition's morale on a thread discussing their 28% lead, but then doing it laughably poorly, is perhaps not the best use of your astroturfing budget. But hey, it's your money. Keep it up!

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    13. "if 52% of Scots support the SNP and by extension independence"

      Deary me, you're not subtle are you. Yawntastic trolling.

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    14. If you support the SNP, you are supporting independence, whether you realise it or not. And I think this may be the problem - some people, amazingly enough, haven't twigged that a nationalist party is nationalist. Are socialist freebies aimed disproportionately at the wealthy and middle class worth voting for a party that will use every trick in the book short of armed insurrection to drag Scotland out of the UK, in ignorance of the mass participation referendum we held just recently? If people really think that then......they're nuts, frankly.

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    15. What do you mean? That they are pursuing policies that make them popular? What a fantastical notion! I'd forgotten that the real aim of politics was to attempt to do nothing for most of the people and try to get away with it by smearing anyone who offers something more hopeful as 'delusional'.

      Have to say the line that 'we had a referendum, so now the SNP have to effectively disband or they are ignoring the will of the people' is wearing a bit thin also. They are free to continue campaigning as they see fit and (in keeping with what the gradualist wing of the party believes in) to promote further devolution in hopes of showing the more reticent Scots step-by-step that the country is capable of governing its own affairs. If people, in further democratic referenda, are still not persuaded then this is fair enough. It's rare that I get arsey on forums, but I am afraid no other interpretation of how things should go forward is allowable. Unless you're not really interested in democracy.

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    16. Democracy means respecting the outcome even though it might not suit you personally. Hours after the referendum we had Salmond hinting at UDI and now this constant talk of another referendum in a couple of years despite the ballot boxes only just having been packed away from the last one. This isn't democracy.

      You use the word 'popular' to describe the SNP policies. Try populist. Free prescriptions for the rich starve other areas of the NHS of funds. Free higher education for those who can afford to pay has come at the expense of college places for the poor. Yet people don't see this. They just think "free stuff!!!!" - and end up voting for a party that, if it were ever successful in achieving its main objective, would have to axe all this "free stuff" fairly quickly!

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    17. They are currently trying to win as many seats as they can under the system that they they wanted rid of in September. This indicates that they have 'respected the outcome' as fully as you can possibly expect, are still playing by the rules of that system and are in fact being totally democratic. You cannot tell anyone what their future policies are to be. That's shutting down debate. You don't get to decide. Things get put before the electorate as a whole, and they get to. If Labour woke up today and suddenly remembered they were socialist and chose to take that brand of policy/worldview into GE 2015, before losing narrowly would you say that they had to abandon it thereafter? They'd be free to do so of course (it is their right, even if it'd lead to people thinking they abandoned their principles in search of popularity). But no-one could tell them to, in a demoncratic country, abandon whatever policies they saw fit as they would believe that was the best way of running things and would be free to ask the electorate to agree with them as often as they liked. The electorate would be free to disagree as often as they liked. That's democracy.

      Moreover, going on about the 'populist' nature of their policies is silliness of the highest order. Tell me why they should not offer whatever they like to whomever they like? You freely confess that, in fact, they are working within a budget and having to take from Peter to give to Paul (as all parties do). As it happens, I don't agree with all their policies (and I am not a member of the SNP or anything like that) but attempting to claim they can't follow the policies they have already set out to do is silly - it's well-known that they have to balance the budget from what they are given each year and do so. Therefore, they CAN afford it. They are currently offering the best alternative among all the parties with a shot in Scotland. The other *main* parties offer nothing worth having (except perhaps the Greens, but they are not in a position to win big at the moment.....so not as ready to influence yet as some would like).

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    18. "If you support the SNP, you are supporting independence"

      The SNP have got higher vote share than support for independence in election after election, numbnuts.

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    19. Not really up on all the polls and people then are you?

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    20. It will be interesting to see how people who voted 'No' will vote. I am Yes and I would only consider voting for the SNP or the Greens. In my constituency we just have the SNP so that's an easy choice. If I was a No voter and wanted a pro-Union vote I could vote for Conservatives, Labour, Lib Dem or UKIP....who to choose? I think the Union vote will be split and I suspect that the 1.6 million defeated Yes voters will want to vote to send a message and apart from in a few constituencies that vote will be SNP.

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  5. Interesting to see Mike Smithson speculating on a 'shy unionist' factor and suggesting SNP leads might be lower in telephone polls with non-Scottish interviewers. Smacks to me of grasping at straws, but hey.

    I did the recent Populus poll by telephone and the interviewer had a Northern English accent - for those who have participated in polls by other ocmpanies, where did their interviewers come from?

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    1. Yeah - if we're wildly speculating I'd have thought 'shy SNP voter' syndrome would be the actual problem - SNP voters feeling awkward responding to English interviewers because they are aware of how the SNP is monstered in the UK, and think that the interviewer might think they're a slavering racist Anglophobe. It's not *totally* implausible.

      A "shy unionist" afraid to tell a Scot that they are voting Labour - that *is* mince.

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    2. His twitter feed is quite humorous trying to project local election results onto Westminster elections. Local elections results can be just that - local.

      I think it will get a bit closer than the currents polls indicate as we get closer to 7th May but it is like a mirror image for the two main parties.

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    3. It may well be that people say "SNP" thinking 'take that you English *"@!'

      But then they vote no and labour - to make sure they keep the English gold.

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    4. It may well be that you're rubbish at this.

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  6. Daily Record PressmanJanuary 21, 2015 at 2:24 PM

    Anonymous
    41% would still give the Nats around 43 seats to Labour's 14. We're doomed" I VOW!!

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  7. It must be the Jim Murphy effect LOL

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  8. A better way of putting it is that we are fast approaching the point of No return. I think we have already reached some kind of point of no return though - i.e. the one where we are going to win big. We're probably going to win around 30 seats - which is astonishing. The only point of no return we're waiting to cross is the one where we win Huge.

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    1. But... the problem of the SNP being frozen out of mindshare, due to the fact that Scotland gets 95% English television coverage looms heavily.

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    2. Never mind the Tories and the Tories will form a coalition just to keep all other parties out,and EVEL is just another way of ending the union,if an English parliament or assembly is wanted then it should not be in Westminster and it should not be the present MP,s.They should have a separate assembly building,and separate members to operate it.If they persist in creating a two tier system of MP,s then its from them that the union will be ended hurrah,they fought to keep the status quo now they don't like the idea that another country in the union may be top dog for a wee while,that vis what they fear.

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  9. Bizarre tweet from Mike Smithson -

    “Would, I wonder, phone polls of Scotland produce different results if non-Scottish interviewers used.”

    Is he suggesting that

    1. All interviewers are identifiably Scottish - presumably by wearing CU Jimmy wigs and speaking in Gaelic?
    2. All Scots are SNP supporters so interviewers misrecord some as Lab or Con to give the appearance of opposition?
    3. All scots are anti-English racists, and the mere sound of a Brummy accent would turn douce Morningside Tories into slavering Nats?
    4. All of these?

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  10. Daily Record PressmanJanuary 21, 2015 at 2:38 PM

    "AnonymousJanuary 21, 2015 at 2:31 PM
    But... the problem of the SNP being frozen out of mindshare, due to the fact that Scotland gets 95% English television coverage looms heavily"

    I think we are clutching at straws there! More voters in Scotland are now turning to social media now and EM is more unpopular in Scotland than David Cameron. We can't go on dressing this up can we?

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    1. If we're going to be conservative we need to look at the kind of thing that's happened to the SNP's %age support in previous GEs, which is a falling during the short campaign. We'll be starting at a higher level and I am open to the argument that "Scotland has changed". Nevertheless, if I were a betting man I'd predict a drop between now and May.

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    2. Daily Record PressmanJanuary 21, 2015 at 2:49 PM

      Absolutely the Nat vote will fall between now and the election but time is running out for Labour and just the loss of 10 seats to the Nats plus an additional Nat gain of 6 or 7 L/D seats could be significant in the next parliament for Ed.

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    3. will it ? we are sailing into uncharted territory and the old assumptions cannot hold true ,The way things are going ,who is to say that the SNP share will continue to rise as the Scottish electorate see that real power could be achieved with a sizeable cohort of SNP MP's

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    4. "we are sailing into uncharted territory and the old assumptions cannot hold true"

      Congrats on that crystal ball!

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    5. Would you like to cite a political commentator disputing that GE 2015 is uncharted territory? Where, logically, no assumptions about familiar territory would hold true? There's a difference between a prediction, and an observation.

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  11. The problem with the SNP dropping in the run up to General Elections, was that the FACT was that a vote for the SNP to protect Scotland's interests was easily presented to the voters as a wasted vote.
    The best way to stop the Tory's was to vote en mas for Labour who would fight our corner, bla bla bla.

    Only the low information voter, now believes this, and the surge in SNP support no longer renders their vote a 'wasted vote' although it hasn't stopped the increasingly out of touch Dim Jim Murphy, from trying to convince us that this is still the case.

    I think anyone who still believes that Scots will suddenly awaken from some brainwashed sleep, as in some Scottish fairy-tale, in which a beautiful princess will kiss the big ugly frog of Nationalism, who will immediately turn into a handsome Labour voting prince, is in for a big shock.

    Look again at what (until recently) former labour voters, are writing on the nationalist comments sections.

    Labour has become as despised as the Tory's and in some cases including my own even more so.

    We ain'c coming back Labour, not now, not ever!

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  12. If MSM think they can continue to berate and belittle Yes voters and SNP voters. They really are more stupid than we thought. By doing so they are writing off the majority of the Scottish voting public. The tide has turned and they either get on board or their days are numbered in Scotland. SNP voters are the majority and you cannot potray the majority as left wing , nationalist nutters. SNP are the norm.

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  13. Haha this is getting ridiculous now!

    Paging Mick Pork. Remember the days on Political Betting when left-of-centre opinion was just about tolerated by TSE, before he selectively banned us all from his Rightwing racist cesspit?

    You used to post a breakdown of UK General Elections showing that, contrary to popular opinion, Scottish seats generally make little difference to Labour's chances of power.

    Could you post it again please? I'd like to cuddle it like a comfort blanket.

    Cheers.

    Hugh.

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    1. I presume you mean the myth that scottish Labour MPs have always made a significant difference to the GE result over the years.

      http://wingsoverscotland.com/why-labour-doesnt-need-scotland/

      TBH it's not much of a comfort blanket when little Ed is scarcely any more popular outside of scotland and Labour and the tories are both so unpopular they are struggling to get above 30% making a majority for either one look ever more unlikely.

      In a post Indyref 1 world it may well be shrewd for some in Labour to calculate how to win a GE without the usual swathe of scottish Labour MPs. However, the presupposes they would take a different policy stance when the evidence has always been that they took scottish voters for granted anyway. Also it would be the rabid Blairites most likely to jump in and argue for even more tory triangulation. (This despite it being blindingly obvious that little Ed is hardly so unpopular because the voters think he's far too left wing or 'Red Ed' as the right wing lunatics laughably think.)

      Those Blairites have most certainly not all gone away and the continuing farce over Chilcott and Iraq proves beyond all doubt they still have a powerful influence. To be sure much of the blame for the appalling Chilcott shambles can be laid squarely at the feet of terrified senior civil servants who fear exposure of their corrupt and servile spin and lies at the behest of successive westminster governments - but it is near certain that it was some of the most infamous Blarites, and indeed likely the saintly Tony himself, who had an informal 'word' with the fop Cameron. This would be to ensure any guarantees that were made to senior civil servants about not looking too closely at their conduct while trying to downplay Chilcott were fulfilled. It is also in the tories interest not to look too closely at Iraq since they not only enthusiastically supported it it but have continued the Iraq idiocy to this day.

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    2. I agree with all of that.

      Sadly, too much of the party I support have failed to notice that the world has moved on.

      After 5 short years of crushing Tory austerity ideology people want an alternative. Not a watered down version of the same elitist crap that the fat Tory fops and their greasy millionaire mates are serving up.

      And what many don't realise is that there's no policy difference between "Blairites" and "Brownite". The clash was all personality. And too many of both are still around, desperately trying to woo mainstream rightwing media, still styling like it's 1996. Ed Balls, for example, is a classic triangulating "Blairite", policy wise.

      Anyway, this is a SNP forum, not a Lab or general politics one, so I'll stop ranting now. One day Labour will be back. Ed has shown glimpses, the best I can hope for is that he wins the UK in May and really gets brave to put all that crap to bed once and for all.

      All the best.

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  14. You guys really do like to deceive yourselves, don't you? This poll proves yet again that the Labour party are increasing their share of the vote. SNP are on no change and Green are down 2%, so the pro-indy parties are on the way out.

    Scottish Labour are still on course to keep all their seats at the GE in May. The SNP are finished and you lot still have your heads stuck in the sand if you think they have any hope.

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    1. Edna Welthorpe (Mrs)January 21, 2015 at 5:31 PM

      LoL

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    2. I'll have some jam with that toast please.

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    3. Pissdrunk at 5.15 on a Wednesday. Need to watch that.

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  15. Has anyone done a poll of trades union members in Scotland? Is it possible?

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  16. Miliband isn't a serious candidate for PM. I'm expecting a late conservative surge in England that will panic the left and draw them back into the labour fold in Scotland. I also think the SNP vote could currently be as low as 36%, given the rolling yougov average and their degree of accuracy in the european election last year. If that true - and the labour party are in the mid to high thirties, then there isn't much to separate them. A five point swing places them dead even, with labour winning the most seats. I'm fairly confident of the way this will play out. Might put a bet on it actually.

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    1. Labour in mid to high twenties, meant to say

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  17. This website seems to have attracted a number of new posters recently, such as 'SNP are toast' above. If you really thought the SNP are finished, why do you feel it necessary to turn on a pc, and post it on a pro-independence website? Mick Pork was right about the problems with anonymous posts, there is three in a row here, and nobody has any idea if they are from the same individual or not. Surely it is not too difficult to come up with a user name?

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    1. Come on,"SNP are toast" is obviously a parody account.

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    2. I find it depressing when I see these threads have loads of comments because I know it's all going to be a massive troll fest below the line.

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    3. I agree, Rolfe, some of these are almost certainly parody accounts, perhaps a humorous piss-take of the SNP-Bad-Team-McTernan kids who have popped up with their amateur rubbish over the last week or two, especially on twitter.

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  18. The approval ratings in the Ipsos Mori poll are highly amusing.

    Ed Miliband's net approval amongst the rump of Labour supporters? 1%. Negative 45% overall. Only slightly better than Clegg (negative 50%) and worse than Dave (negative 40%).

    7% say Murphy being the branch officer makes them much more likely to vote Labour. 19% say a lot less likely. The bigger concern I would suggest for Labour is that 48% say it makes no difference (i.e. they've already made their minds up).

    https://www.ipsos-mori.com/Assets/Docs/Scotland/scotland-pom-jan-2015-tables.pdf

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  19. There is no doubt that things are grim for Labour.

    However there are a few genuine reasons for optimism / straws to clutch at. Primary amongst them, as the election gets nearer and the very real prospect of another Tory Government looms, enough switchers may well take fright to save a chunk of seats.

    Oh and something about people doing the polls having dodgy accents. Oh yeah.

    Hugh

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    1. Except a lot of people have noticed how the SNP Holyrood government is doing not a bad job within it's competences of moderating the bad things from the London Tories and more powers are on the way (you don't have to be fully aware of the detail) so the prospects of more Tory rule in Westminster is not so scary as it used to be. If you add in that Labour have pledged to do the same austerity as the Tories why would you vote Labour?

      Given those the idea of voting SNP for Westminster looks logical. Labour are the same as the Tories, the FibDems are toast so who else do you credibly vote for?

      The SNP are reaping the rewards of policies to help people, to keep our NHS better than the rest and protected. Of being seen to go into bat for Scotland.

      The sight of Labour not bothering to turn up for the trident debate which was all over the media here. Would not have helped Labour either and reminded people where the SNP stand on trident. Scrap trident and spend the money on the NHS and helping the deficit has resonance as does putting more resources into conventional forces (which means jobs for many).

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  20. 55+
    41% SNP
    31% Lab
    18% Con
    7% Lib

    25-54
    58% SNP
    21% Lab
    10% Con
    7% Green
    4% Lib

    18-24 yrs
    77% SNP
    11% Lab
    7% Scottish Socialist
    4% Green

    The future is Generation Yes.

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    1. That's another crumb of comfort actually.

      Older people are, of course, more likely to vote no matter what they tell pollsters.

      And of course some pollsters have dodgy accents.

      Hugh.

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    2. Good for the 18-24 age group! I seriously hope this cohort stick with their beliefs and don't allow themselves to be brow-beaten by older, cynical or unimaginative types who cannot look beyond the current paradigm.

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    3. In the short term I suppose, yes.

      The youngest voters did say they were less likely to vote. MORI has of course accounted for this in headline figures. If more youngsters vote than said they will, the SNP share would be even larger.

      It is the main problem the union faces, it is literally dying.

      The young today are the least British in national identity there is - the highest being the post-war baby boomers.

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    4. Wait! the OVER 55's are voting SNP?
      Wow!

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    5. @Patrick

      Yes, same across the board in polls.

      Lowest of the groups, but still well ahead of Labour in all.

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    6. Some of us have done so all our lives.

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    7. Any insight into how 16-17 cohort would vote?

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    8. Yes cynicalHighlander and you are very much appreciated, but these figures are showing that a large majority of over 55s intend voting SNP!

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    9. @ Scottish Skier,

      When you consider that Dim Jim publicly stated that he would be targeting the older voters in his campaign and that he has enjoyed 24/7 media exposure with very little challenge, it would seem that all is not going according to plan in his camp.

      Was this why he has started hiring the odious characters like McTernan, as in Jims sweet-talking hasn't worked, so it time to let the dogs loose?

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    10. Now that was worth reading. Ye Olde Unione is on borrowede time

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  21. Watched B. Ponsonby on STV News and even he was giving the poll result some significance, including pointing out that Murphy had been Leader for a month and had not made any difference.
    With superb timing the news finished, to be followed by a PPB by the Labour Party!

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  22. "A much, much sillier theory comes courtesy of (predictably enough) Mike Smithson, who seems to think the 'problem' is that Ipsos-Mori's call centre is based in Edinburgh, and that much of their fieldwork is therefore presumably carried out by people with Scottish accents."

    tears of laughter etc.

    The potty old bigot really is beginning to go gaga these days. Like I said, why on earth would anyone take Smithson seriously?

    As for the poll..

    Eggpocalypse Now! :-D

    LOL

    So much for the Eggman.


    I can also tell you right now that this GE is going to be in a completely different league when it comes to the campaign on the ground going by what I've seen already in logistical terms and the sheer numbers, enthusiasm and determination of members and activists.

    The other obvious point to make is that there's no way the spectre of a tory government will be the usual complacent saviour for Labour this time at the GE.

    Not when either labour or the tories don't look like they have a hope in hell of forming a majority. Not while little Ed is the comically unpopular 'alternative' to the fop Cameron. And not when the easy and obvious reply to London Labour's arrogant demands to 'vote for them or the tories get in' is, "How did that turn out in 2010?"

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. A LabNat arrangement sounds good to me to be honest.

      Can you imagine the drooling rage from Telegraph and Mail reading, PB dwelling, southern rightwing fuckwits. Lol.

      Hugh.

      Delete
    2. Which is of course why it won't happen. Labour are clearly moving towards a grand coalition with the Tories in the event of a hung parliament. If the SNP win big they have even less reason to care about the effect that would have on sentiment in Scotland. If the LibDems got wiped out on the Mainland in the last Holyrood election for enabling a Tory govt Labour will be eviscerated because the sense of betrayal will be stronger.

      But that is as nothing to Ed. Labour need English votes to get into government and will do what it takes to hold onto as many of those as it can. Scotland is not in the picture.

      Delete
    3. Muscleguy, what I can't understand is why there isn't a greater furore about a looming Red Tory/Blue Tory coalition. Until it's categorically denied, such a prospect is surely *the* story of this GE, yet as far as I can tell we've had radio silence from Miliband and Cameron on this issue, and also virtual silence from Labour online commenters. If ever proof were needed of the soullessness and gutlessness from top to bottom of the modern Labour Party...

      For this if nothing else they deserve a Scottish wipeout in May.

      Delete
  23. On various points made above.

    There's little doorstep canvassing going on yet - with only a handful of candidates selected. The SNP have by far and away the biggest volunteer membership, and thus should have the most boots on the ground.

    The TV, BBC radio and print media are totally biased already. Any time I see or hear coverage at all I rapidly tire of it and go elsewhere. So its not like they are going to be any more one sided in the next 3 months.

    I am very wary of polls and the hubris this may be generating. The high water mark for our representation was 11 MP's. If we do better than that we have a stunning victory. There is no way we are going to get 40 or 50 or 55!.

    There's many a slip twixt cup and lip.

    Saor Alba

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "There's little doorstep canvassing going on yet - with only a handful of candidates selected."

      True but there are already plans to canvass in places that it was not previously done. In a great many places that were previously thought to be 'safe' Labour seats to be precise.

      "I am very wary of polls and the hubris this may be generating."

      Twas the Eggman who claimed he won't lose a single Labour seat.

      Nor are we responsible for every poll in the field or indeed the vast majority of them.

      We can't change the overwhelmingly unionist media bias but that bias has been crystal clear of late and a great many scots have had their eyes opened to it because of the first Indyref. If the broadcasters and papers think an increasing lack of trust in them is a price worth paying then that's entirely up to them but in a world where the papers and broadcast TV are becoming ever more marginalised and superceded by technology it's hardly a viable long term strategy for any of them.

      Even if we can't overturn some of those gigantic Labour majorites we are at the very least utterly determined to cut them down and make certain that there will be far less 'safe' Labour seats in the future. That alone would put the fear of god into the London branch office since it should be abundantly clear by now that we have no intention of just letting westminster 'get on with it'. We are in this for the long term.

      Delete
    2. Having canvassed for RIC in Dundee West for eg during the referendum I can tell you it is no longer a safe Labour seat. If they can get the people in the poorer estates we were predominantly in and engage the people the seat is eminently winnable. McGovern's majority that looks big is easily overturnable with enough turnout from those who previously sat on their hands but got registered for the referendum.

      Many people are 'labour but never again' and a lot of them were previously more socialist than labour and see the futility of voting SSP for WM and will be happy to stick one on labour by voting SNP. Also McGovern is stepping down so any personal vote is gone.

      Delete
  24. Post at 08.26

    If the the GE were a year away I might agree with you. There isn't time for Slab to recover. A gain of at least 40 seats on the cards.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Or at least enough to secure a majority of seats in Scotland.

      Delete
    2. 29/59 MPs is the goal most certainly. SNP hold a majority.

      Anything else would be a wonderful bonus.

      Delete
  25. There's some interesting adjustments in the Election Forecast site. They're centrally forecasting 34 seats for the SNP, which is pretty much what it has been for the last couple of months.

    The more interesting thing is where they think the gains are more likely. Until today it was always Lib Dem seats that were top of the list. Some of the % probability of SNP gain in those seats has been reduced, whereas the probability in some of the Labour seats (e.g. Glasgow East) has been increased.

    This is having the effect of now making the Tories narrow favourite to win the (most of) Borders seat, in a three-way contest. Meanwhile, it is giving the SNP a 99% (!) chance of winning Glasgow East, even though it would take a 19 point swing to do that.

    The overall implication is that the SNP advance is being concentrated in urban areas (particularly Glasgow) but is not so strong in rural areas (particularly in the south).

    http://electionforecast.co.uk/tables/SNP_seat_gains.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yep, this is what Prof Curtice has been saying since the referendum.

      The rise in the SNP share of the vote, isn t happening across the board, as the SNP had already hit it's high water mark in it's own heartlands.

      The rise is happening in what has been Labour heartlands.

      Delete
  26. I think it's a bit much to expect to win that many seats. I'd *like* to think it's possible but, at the end of the day, it's really about how much the SNP can eat into the Labour vote in many areas (and the majorities are very 'real' in a way in a way that the SNP vote, despite nice polls, is not until people turn up and vote on the day). In this sense, the SNP (like Yes always was) is still coming from behind and we will only see 15 weeks hence whether they have really overhauled Labour. To think anything else until it happens is really counting chickens.

    ReplyDelete
  27. "Well, Ipsos-Mori don't weight by any sort of recalled vote "

    I did stats and apart from topping and tailing some times to remove extremes, the idea usually is to make as sure as you can that the sampling truly is random, and there's a lot of work can go into that. It always seems strange to me then, that these pollsters usually massage the data by "weighting" by recalled voting preferences.

    There might be some call for that if voting intentions aren't changing much, but when you've got a reversal of Labour and SNP percentages, and from 2010, a collapse of the LibDem votes because of their Coalition efforts, then what relevance exactly do 2010 voting memories have - or indeed the purely Holyrood ones from 2011?

    Seems to me accepting the data as random and reporting it directly is far more likely to be accurate in the current climate of large change. In that case weighting by age is acceptable to get the right age mix for sample of the population, and arguably social class to rerpresent the population, but previous voting intentions? I think not.

    ReplyDelete
  28. The 11 MP's for SNP was on just 30% of the vote in 1974. Above 30% under First Past the Post the seats come tumbling in. There are too many new SNP members/voters who are ex-Labour for the SNP vote to decline by much at all. The free publicity SNP are currently getting from the London media will not abate before 7May. 40 seats is perfectly credible. Party needs to put all the membership to work.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. To put it into another perspective, our high water mark is 15% of Scottish MPs in 1974 (since in pre-devolution days we had 71 MPs) compared to 10% currently. We only need to win 10 MPs to beat our previous record by percentage.

      Delete
  29. I agree that we should not get overly confident or cocky over the polls. They are good at the moment, but we still have over three months to go.

    On the MSM, I think their affect on election results in Scotland is on the decline. The SNP won in 2007 (albeit only just), and got a landslide in 2011. Sure we lost the referendum, but not by much. Newspapers sales in Scotland are on a steep decline. The BBC is still fairly popular in Scotland, but they have damaged themselves with a substantial section of the electorate here.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Can you imagine Smithson saying "That poll of Londoners must be wrong because the telephone interviewers didn't have Scottish accents."

    Yet the vice versa scenario must be true when it comes to polling the Scots. You guys are right, Smithson is a racist who can't understand anything beyond his London-centric perspective.

    ReplyDelete
  31. Mean of last 14 YouGov Scottish crossbreaks:

    SNP: 41%, Labour: 28%

    Labour is gradually creeping up, with SNP having fallen to the low forties where it remains stable - for now.

    I find this set of polls far more believable than the sort of thing reported by STV last night - which verges on comedy.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The problem with paying too much attention to the YG sub-samples is that YG themselves have found bigger SNP leads in their Scotland-only polls than would be implied from their sub-samples. For example their last Scotland-only poll had an SNP lead of 20, when the sub-samples were implying a lead of ~15.

      I think there has been a slight movement towards Labour over the last month, but nothing like enough to close the gap even if it was sustained at that rate for the rest of the campaign. The other problem is that there has been a tendency for the SNP vote to harden each time the constitution has been in the news (e.g. after Smith was released). It's going to be back in the news again from today with the release of the command paper.

      Delete
    2. YouGov have altered their methodology to make Scottish sub polls more representative of the Scottish population. So, in theory, about 8 sets of crossbreaks should be as reliable as a full Scottish poll.

      Delete
    3. Anon : No. They've changed their methodology (which is why your claim of a narrowing of the average gap is meaningless - the numbers aren't comparable), but they haven't brought it into line with their full-scale Scottish polls. The SNP are still typically being heavily downweighted due to Westminster-centric party ID weighting.

      Delete
  32. Btw I think one of the biggest problems you will have is getting out the vote. It was the same in the referendum and now the yes side think they have this election in the bag - so they will become even more lazy, whilst the no's will work hard knowing they're up against it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, because the membership of no parties far outweighs the SNP. I don't think so. In any case you'll not be able to bus in your Liverpool contingent, they'll be busy trying to hang on to what they've got.

      Delete
    2. Membership numbers are nothing to do with it.

      Delete
    3. The SNP have been as successful as they have been because they have become very good at getting their vote out. They are very practised at it. With more boots to put on the ground they will be even better at it, for no better reason than more boots means you have a better idea of who your voters are.

      On referendum day I volunteered in the morning with Yes to get the vote out. A carload of us went to the designated area, we all had packs with maps and lists and fanned out to do our individual areas. I came out of one drive to find BT going about mob handed, as a group. There was no hurry to them. I lapped them and nobody else saw them so we covered more area with the same numbers.

      We won here in Dundee. We got our vote out. The same thing can be done in May and a lot of the people doing it got experience during the referendum. As Alan points out Labour's English cavalry will not be coming over the hill in the GE so they will have even fewer people on the ground than during the referendum.

      Delete
  33. TNS sub-sample (size <100)

    SNP 44, Lab and Con 21 each, Greens 11.

    http://www.tns-bmrb.co.uk/news/tns-poll-labour-and-conservatives-neck-and-neck-on-31

    Bit of a shocker for Labour overall as TNS were one of the few pollsters giving Labour a lead.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If Labour continues to lose support in England soft Labour supporters in Scotland might think: what's the point of voting Labour again if England's going to vote in the Tories? Might as well vote SNP.

      DDH

      Delete
    2. For all the talk about if and how Jim Murphy is going to "turn around" Scottish Labour, their biggest problem by far is Miliband. Even half of their own voters think he's shite.

      When Murphy gave his pitch as to why Scots should vote Labour yesterday, all he said was "we need to get rid of David Cameron". It was noticeable that he did not say who Cameron would be replaced by.

      Delete
  34. I see Anthony Wells is querying the validity of the Panelbase poll in his latest update.

    ReplyDelete
  35. Murphy to stand again as an MP?

    This seems like a potentially career-ending error.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-glasgow-west-30934929

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He was selected as the candidate for the seat in 2013. That's not news. He hasn't done anything to change that, like announce he's standing down as the candidate (yet). That's not news either. Nor does it mean he's definitely going to stand. Talk about making up news out of nothing?

      Delete
  36. To clarify, if Murphy were to lose in East Renfrewshire, he would be ineligible to remain as leader of the Scottish branch after May 7.

    ReplyDelete
  37. We can all give our opinions on this site and differ widely in our opinions and thoughts, but reading this short article about a Labour Party Fundraiser in Edinburgh and the comments from the Labour spokesman, about how actively engaged the Labour support is in the upcoming election, just about trumps any of our opinions.

    ENJOY :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oops, forgot to paste the link, lol!

      https://archive.today/vrNmF

      Delete
  38. I really cannot see Murphy losing East Renfrewshire if he still stands (which is the case at the moment). It would be good to see Murphy lose, but I do not see it happening, given the size of his majority and the constituency in question. I would not put beating Murphy any higher than Curran, Alexander, Davidson etc. He is in the same careerist mode as them.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If you look back at the Jim Murphy election, you'd see the labour mind-set at work, with it's 'big hitter' belief, in people like Dim Jim, etc.
      The Labour Party has been clinging on to this idea, that if ever the big hitters came up to tell us Scots how we should vote, we would all be enthralled and follow this advice from our dear old Socialist leaders.

      Winning his seat from Murphy would be fantastic, but not likely to happen, however just eating into his East Renfrewshire majority would be moral destroying for Labour as it would put to bed the 'Big Hitter' comfort blanket that they have been clinging to.

      So lets win where we can and reduce Labour majority where we can and everything else is a bonus.

      Delete
  39. but his opponents' leaflets write themselves don't they?

    "Vote for me and I'll do the job full-time and properly"

    ReplyDelete
  40. www.live-counter.com/earth-mass-lost/

    ReplyDelete