Panelbase have updated their datasets, thus solving the mystery of yesterday's tweet from Jason Allardyce suggesting that the public believe Scottish independence to be "inevitable". That turns out to be a reference to the re-asking of a question that has been posed before (and with unchanged wording, thus making a direct comparison with the previous poll possible).
38% (+3) believe Scotland is likely to become independent within 5-10 years
16% (-2) believe Scotland is likely to become independent, but not for at least 10-15 years
7% (-1) believe Scotland is likely to become independent, but not for at least 20-30 years
27% (+1) do not believe Scotland is likely to become independent in the next few decades
13% (n/c) don't know
That means a total of 61% expect independence within the next few decades. A clear majority (54%) selected one of the first two options, which in spite of the imprecise wording appears to imply that they expect independence within two decades at the absolute most. And that's with the don't knows taken into account - if they're stripped out, more than 43% of the sample expect independence within just five or ten years.
As you'd imagine, Yes voters from the first indyref are most bullish about the likelihood of independence, but the total number of No voters who anticipate independence at some point over the next few decades (40%) is almost equal to the number of No voters who don't think it will happen at all (43%). And intriguingly enough, as many as 49% of English-born voters expect independence, and only 36% don't. However, the subsample of English voters is relatively small, so those figures should be treated with caution.
The other important piece of news from the updated datasets is the complete figures for Westminster voting intention, including the smaller parties...
SNP 47% (n/c)
Conservatives 27% (+3)
Labour 15% (-1)
Liberal Democrats 4% (-1)
Greens 3% (n/c)
UKIP 3% (-1)
Adding up the raw numbers gives the two main pro-independence parties an outright majority of the vote - just. The SNP and Greens have approximately 50.3% between them. Part of the explanation is that No voters from 2014 are significantly more likely than Yes voters to say they have less than an 80% chance of turning out for an election, or that they don't know which party they would vote for, and as a result end up being removed from the sample. Nevertheless, a majority for the pro-independence parties is highly encouraging as we ponder the possibility (I've no idea of how strong a possibility it is) of a snap Holyrood election to win an outright mandate for independence if the Westminster Tories are stupid enough to attempt to block a referendum.
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