Monday, December 10, 2018

Crisis deepens for Tyrannical Theresa as bombshell Panelbase poll shows support for independence at a two-year high

OK, I admit it, I've obviously been living down a hole today, because I've only just noticed this rather significant new poll, which apparently was published early this morning.

Should Scotland be an independent country?

Yes 47% (+2)
No 53% (-2)

So you might remember the SIF-funded Panelbase poll from a few weeks ago, which I was first to publish (a bit of a contrast from today) and which I mentioned was an eighteen-month high for Yes?  Not anymore, it's not.  A further two-point boost has taken Yes well above its recent normal range in Panelbase polls.  47% would not be unusually high if this was a Survation or Ipsos-Mori poll, but Panelbase have over the last couple of years become noted for being firmly on the No-friendly end of the spectrum.  The last time there was a result as good as this in a Panelbase poll was way back in the autumn of 2016.

Of course it's possible that the high Yes vote may just be an illusion caused by sampling variation, although if that was the correct explanation you might expect the poll's sample to be unusually favourable towards the SNP as well, and that isn't really the case.  There's no improvement at all for the SNP on Westminster voting intentions (which will be a disappointment to those who hoped recent YouGov subsamples were the first sign of a breakthrough), and although there's a 2% boost on the Holyrood constituency vote, that simply takes the party back to where they were in the Panelbase poll before last.  It's only on the Holyrood regional list vote that the SNP are clearly doing better than the recent Panelbase norm.

Scottish voting intentions for the next Westminster general election:

SNP 37% (n/c)
Labour 26% (+1)
Conservatives 26% (-2)
Liberal Democrats 6% (-1)

Scottish Parliament constituency ballot:

SNP 41% (+2)
Conservatives 25% (-2)
Labour 23%  (-1)
Liberal Democrats 6% (n/c)

Scottish Parliament regional list ballot:

SNP 38% (+1)
Conservatives 26% (n/c)
Labour 22% (n/c)
Liberal Democrats 7% (+1)
Greens 6% (n/c)

Although seats projections from polls need to be taken with a heavy dose of salt, on a uniform swing these figures would give the SNP and Greens 62 Holyrood seats in combination - just 3 short of a majority.  So even if the next Scottish Parliament election was a lot less than two and a half years away, there would still be a fighting chance of retaining the pro-independence majority.

It's not the headline voting intention figures from the Panelbase poll that are making the headlines, though - it's the results of supplementary questions that ask respondents to make a straight choice between independence and two different Brexit scenarios.  Independence is slightly preferred to remaining in Brexit Britain even if there is a negotiated deal (and the wording doesn't specify that the deal has to be Theresa May's deal - it could just as easily mean a better Norway-type deal).  But there is an overwhelming majority in favour of independence if the alternative is a no deal Brexit.  Although we've seen majorities for independence on this type of hypothetical question before, a majority on the scale of 59-41 is unusual.

Do you believe Scottish independence or a no deal Brexit would be better for Scotland?

Scottish independence: 59%
No deal Brexit: 41%

Do you believe Scottish independence or remaining in the UK but outside the EU under a negotiated Brexit deal would be better for Scotland?

Scottish independence: 53%
Remaining in the UK but outside the EU under a negotiated Brexit deal: 47%

The snag, of course, is that the results of hypothetical polling questions can't be regarded as being quite as credible as the results on the standard independence question.  People can very easily overestimate how big an impact a hypothetical event will have on their own voting intention.  We might find that, if and when no deal Brexit becomes the status quo, people's instinctive passivity and small 'c' conservatism will kick in and there won't be much of a boost for Yes at all.  However, it's interesting that people clearly feel that Brexit ought to increase their support for independence, and that might be a point of some significance in the heat of an indyref campaign.

Last but not least, there is a sizeable majority in favour of a snap general election if Theresa May's deal is voted down by the Commons - something that should happen this Tuesday (yikes!), unless the vote is cancelled.

If the Prime Minister fails to secure a majority in a vote in the House of Commons for the Brexit deal, would you favour another general election being held?

Yes: 61%
No: 39%

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  1. Could be just panelbase Yes/SNP shares are on the lower side of their margin of error.

    Certainly, there's something of a recent trend on the hypothetical (;-)) question about a referendum 'tomorrow' results. That and generally, the SNP/Greens are doing way better in mid term polling than they did 2011-16.

    Also always keep in mind that 2015 may never be repeated. That was the last 'British' general election. It brought in EVEL which made these English elections as Scots MPs can no longer take part in many votes and can't hold cabinet positions. Hence the sizeable hit to turnout in Scotland in 2017. 2015 was a last attempt to see if Scots could be involved in government - the answer the English gave was 'No. No. No.'.

    EVEL really was a stab through the heart of unionism. A solid kick in the face for loyalists. Mundell winnae quit because SoSfS is the only position a Scots MP will ever hold now, and even that's a post rendered pointless by devolution. People have way underestimated the impact of it. If you want to understand why May and Corybn don't really give a crap about Scotland / how many MPs they get here, then look to EVEL. We used to have some influence on a narrow outcome. Not with EVEL. Wait until you get a situation where a party has a majority in England but not UK wide; what a mess that will be. Let's hope that happens if we get a snap general election; a 'British government' and PM that can't vote on the English NHS lol. Soon enough England will want independence.

  2. I see the UK can just cancel brexit if it wants according to the EU courts.

    So, that poll could be underestimating the Yes for a no deal scenario.

    People might feel more compelled to vote for indy knowing that a no deal inflicted upon them was entirely the fault of the UK / legally avoidable.

  3. Another psychological factor, I believe, in addition to the "Brexit ought to make me more in favour of independence", is that the Great British Meeja Machine has succeeded all too well in bolstering the idea that Unionists are in a far larger majority than they actually are, reinforcing many peoples'perception of independence as a "lost cause". You can see that psychology at play in some of the mockery we get from our friendly ultraYoon internet trolls.

  4. I'm sure today's Westminster proceedings will have restored faith in UK governance. Real strength and stability stuff.

  5. English nationalism is now fully clashing with British unionism. Add in standard Tory self interest + incompetence and it's quite something to watch.

    Mrs May told MPs on Monday afternoon that she would be "deferring" the vote - just hours after ministers including Scottish Secretary David ['I'm resigning'] Mundell, had insisted that it would be going ahead.

    ...Mr Lamont said...there were "clearly significant risks associated" with Mrs May's withdrawal agreement over fishing and the Northern Irish backstop, adding that "these are not risks I am prepared to take".

    ...This came after the interim Scottish Conservative leader Jackson Carlaw wrote in the Daily Record that Mrs May's deal was "the best way to keep the union together".

    He said the plan...would "offer the hope we can all move on from a decade of constitutional division in Scotland".

    Mr Carlaw's position was described by another Scottish Tory, Ross Thomson, as "rubbish". The Aberdeen South MP said the deal was "a risk for the union" which "treats Northern Ireland like a third country".

    There has been "breathtaking ignorance" from "those who believe themselves to be unionists" who oppose the Northern Ireland backstop in the Brexit deal, Sir John Major has said.

    It's all coming tumbling down, and it's entirely English nationalism that's doing it. All the SNP can do is get the lifeboat as ready as they can; the queue for it is starting to build.

    1. Problem is the SNPs's position is to ask permission to launch the lifeboat, if they wait 'until now is the time' they will sink with it.

    2. Especially if that lifeboat - as in "life" "boat"; a boat of or for life - is made of wool and collapses upon launch into that waste of waters known as the "ocean" or "sea".

    3. A legal referendum doesn't need London's permission. The Scottish government can just hold a referendum with all the weight of the Brexit one, even getting the courts to declare it 'legally watertight' if needed. Likewise as per the brexit one, just 50%+1 with no turnout requirement is needed. Thankfully we have rock solid british precedent to work with here.

      The English government (it becomes English if it tries to block a referendum while Scots MPs support one) trying to block such a move would just increase Yes support in a huge way. 'No' only managed to pull off a win last time because they didn't try to stop the iref. 65% Yes would be readily achieveable in such a situation, even 74% Yes (inc devo maxers as per 1997). Hell, I'd have voted Leave if the EU had tried to block the brexit referendum and I'm as pro-Europe as they come.

      As an aside, the EU helping the UK on its way and not interfering at all in brexit has made me much more pro-EU.

    4. I know that, just that the SNP leadership seems to have no interest in that option, its either a peoples vote or a section 30 according to the message coming from them.

  6. We know that nobody is really paying attention anymore. But the ECJ ruling has destroyed the claim that an independent Scotland would have been thrown out of the Eu.

    We know that no member of the EU can be evicted, they can only leave of their own free will.

    Scotland shares membership of the Eu with england by virtue of the Treaty of Union.

    So Scotland by already being a member of the EU could never have been kicked out just because we ended the english occupation.

    Scotland is not part of a member state. Scotland IS the member state.

    The real reason why cameron refused to ask for a ruling on the issue. He knew the truth but needed the lie to scare the vulnerable.

    1. Where are you getting all this from? Scotland and England aren't states, and the EU website doesn't list either as members.

  7. Belfast Telegraph
    10 hours ago
    Survey reveals 65% in Northern Ireland would now vote Remain - and 60% think united Ireland more likely after Brexit

  8. What worries me about the numbers in this type of poll is that Yes support doesn't actually go up that much, the shift is mostly No->DK.

    Tabs are here:

    Sample size was 1028.

    Yes on standard question - 410
    Indy better than "deal" Brexit - 413
    Indy better than no deal - 422

    No on standard question - 461
    "deal" brexit better than Indy - 372
    No deal better than Indy - 288

    DK on standard question - 40
    DK on "deal" vs Indy - 127
    DK on no deal vs Indy - 202

    We need committed Yes voters, not DK waverers who I suspect might end up back in the No column if pushed.

    This, coupled with hard Brexit meaning Indy is economically scarier makes me think the SNP are playing this exactly right. Reverse Brexit first, then go for Indy.

    1. Those 'don't knows' only become committed Yessers during a proper sanctioned Independence campaign, in whatever form, as long as it has a real decision date at the end of it. That is the ONLY time that the true arguments for Scottish Independence ever get properly aired directly between the electorate.

      Meanwhile, in the shadow created by the lack of such an Indy campaign the BBC, MSM and British establishment parties carry on with their drip, drip NO campaigning, never needing to answer or acknowledge their blatant inaccuracies and hypocrisies.

      It is that continual and unanswered British media NO campaign which is the real danger to all those new don't knows Brian. Only a campaign gets our Yes arguments heard and only the SNP can call that Indy campaign.

      Grandstanding over BREXIT in Westminster is simply encouraging Scots voters to see themselves within the frame of UK politics and is counter productive to Independence campaigning. This is one of the reasons the BREXIT polling figures are not translating directly into Yes figures. Folk are always being asked to think in terms of UK political framing. Deal, No Deal (for UK) etc. We need to reinforce the only option for Scottish decision making is Independence. It is a simple message.

  9. Unemployment edging up again even though hundreds of thousands of EU workers have left the country. You can't magic up well paid jobs for everyone simply by kicking out foreigners; that's fairies and unicorns economics.

    At best, all you'll do is create a short-lived little wage rise for those still in work as employers increasingly struggle to find qualified staff. All the while the economy slowly grinds to a halt and folk lose their jobs. Pretty much happening exactly like that right now.

    Of course if you are well educated / highly skilled, you'll be less affected as you remain in demand and can go work overseas if needed. The lower down the skills ladder you are, the more likely you will be to lose your job. It's always the working class who get hit first in a recession / suffer the most when free movement is restricted. The weathly elites want the poor to be prisoners; gives them more control over the proles. Hell, if you can't go get a job somewhere else easy, they don't have to pay you more.

  10. This makes me so pleased I'm becoming an Irish citizen.

    Get it up ya.


    Brexit: Tory resentment of Irish power within EU

    "We simply cannot allow the Irish to treat us like this," the former minister said about the negotiating tactics of the Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar.

    The Conservative MP was exasperated that the Republic of Ireland (population: 4.8m) has been able to shape the EU negotiating stance that has put such pressure on the UK (population: 66m).

    "This simply cannot stand," the one-time moderniser told me. "The Irish really should know their place."


    Aye, 'Know your place like those sweaty socks such as GWC do as part of a greater Englandshire, sorry 'UK'!'.

    1. Don't call the Groundskeeper Willie Clown GWC a sweaty sock, he's a sweaty jock. A deranged sweaty jock.

  11. Brilliant watching Labour MPs/officials/supporters now saying that there is no point in a confidence motion as they would not win, after saying for god knows how long long they would call one (and the voting arithmetic has not changed at all).

    Hope the other parties table the vote instead to watch Corbyn try and squirm his way out.

  12. Let me get this straight... England tells the 27 leaders of its neighbours, their families and countrymen, that it 'doesn't want their sorts' coming to it's green and pleasant land / that they've to 'go back to where they came from and stop queue jumping'...

    Then it says it wants all the benefits of their club, just not to pay for that, nor have to follow the rules the members make.

    Now it's demanding it also get to welch on an international peace agreement so it can continue to annex a large area of an EU member state without even asking folks there what they want?

    That about sums up where we are right?

    Seems utterly mad until you hear them say things like 'Irish should know their place'.

    UK is utterly fkd.


  13. skier, you need tae take the favourite up the chorus tae obtain Irish citizenship.

    1. Like you after a night in the Waterloo?

    2. Betty old sweaty dae ye mean the Wellington?

    3. You know what I mean