Friday, November 1, 2019

Election 2019: If Brexit Party supporters in Scotland can't vote for their first-choice party, who will they vote for instead?

Not for the first time in his career, Nigel Farage has rapidly gone from one extreme to another.  Until a day or two ago, it looked like he was hellbent on doing as much damage as possible to Boris Johnson's election chances by putting up candidates in all or most constituencies, whereas now the rumour is suddenly that he might try to protect the bigger prize of Brexit by only launching a challenge in a very small number of Labour-held seats.  It's only a rumour, but if by any chance it's true, it ought to be bad news for us because it presumably means Farage won't be helpfully splitting the Tory/pro-Brexit vote in any of the Tory-SNP battleground seats in Scotland.

Nevertheless, I was intrigued by Lord Hayward's counter-intuitive suggestion that the Tories could actually be harmed if the Brexit Party sit out almost all of the seats.  His theory is that Boris Johnson has already won back most of the ex-Tories who defected to the Brexit Party earlier this year, and that the bulk of the Brexit Party's remaining support is therefore made up of ex-Labour voters who would never consider voting Tory.  In other words, if there isn't a Brext Party candidate to vote for on 12th December, those voters will either abstain or revert to Labour - and if they do the latter, the Tories' lead over Labour is bound to decrease.

A quick look at recent polling datasets reveals that Hayward's theory is based on a false premise - the proportion of Brexit Party support that is ex-Labour may have risen since Johnson became Prime Minister, but it's still only a minority.  The Tories still stand to gain more than Labour from any absence of Brexit Party candidates.

But all of this made me think about the composition of Brexit Party support in Scotland.  Will those voters transfer more or less as a bloc to the Scottish Tories if Farage doesn't put up candidates?  There are two barriers to answering that question - a) there have only been two full-scale Scottish polls since Johnson entered Downing Street, and b) the sample of Brexit Party voters in each poll is far too small to give us reliable information.  But there is one very striking statistic from the most recent Panelbase poll - almost as many Brexit Party supporters voted SNP in the 2016 Holyrood election as voted Tory.  By the time of the 2017 Westminster general election, they were breaking much more for the Tories, probably because the EU referendum had happened in the interim and they didn't want to vote for a party committed to overturning the Leave vote.  Even in 2017, though, a significant minority of Brexit Party supporters (just under one-quarter, in fact) voted SNP.  And only a little over half of them voted Tory.

So it could be a mistake to assume that Brexit Party voters in Scotland are monolithically pro-Tory, or anti-SNP, or even anti-independence.  Many of them could be genuinely up for grabs if their first choice party isn't available. Although a Farage-free election certainly wouldn't be good news for us, it might not be unalloyed bad news either.

58 comments:

  1. I voted SNP 2015-2017, and Brexit Party in the Euros this year.

    If the Brexit Party stand in my seat I could go either way, but if they don’t I will probably stick with the SNP. I really want Brexit to happen, feel fed up with the SNP - but voting Conservative is just too much for me.

    My girlfriend on the other hand has the Brexit Party as her first choice but will go Tory if they don’t stand.

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    1. The most important thing for me about the EU/EEA is full free movement. I'm a big fan of Norway, so could be persuaded that way.

      The main concern I have though is then needing to follow a lot of rules Scotland would lack a say in.

      I would say Brexit has made me more pro-EU. The fact that the UK has been completely left alone without any interference to leave if and when it wants has shown how brexiters were talking utter shite about how the EU was some sort of dark 'EUSSR' you'd need to fight your way out of (not that I ever believed them). The 27 held open the door for the UK, even standing there for many months after 'brexit day' holding it open while the UK dithered, mumbled and fought with itself, never actually stepping out. Their collective arm must be aching now they're still having to stand there until the end of January. The contrast with the UK is so very stark, where it's 'England decides if you can leave or not, and we're saying No!'.

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    2. Would you say dat your burd is a dog? I find that in Scotland Brexit party/Tory supporters are morons..but just wanted confirmation.

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    3. I'm a Scexiter who stuck with the SNP in 2017 but was disappointed by the SNP's dismissive attitude to the voters it lost in 2017. I abstained from voting in the Euro Election.
      I see that Jim Fairlie is planning to abstain in this election but I'm inclined to vote SNP to strengthen the case for an IndyRef2 (although I think that Holyrood 2021 should be used as the second vote if necessary). "BRINO" with a view to "SRINO" would do for me. Doing a lot of our trade with a few large European countries (including England) has political implications but is better being looked at on a longer timescale.
      I think the SNP needs to move from being an advocate of the EU to being Prosecuting Counsel against the British political system. The Brexit process has brought new evidence to light - Holyrood can be messed with. And if we go to some sort of WTO system for the UK 'Mainland' then the Scottish NHS can be messed with.

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  3. A pro-EFTA Scexit party could do well in an indy Scotland. Polling suggests a hard scexit party would get nowhere; under indy, support for EEA/EFTA membership rises sharply.

    However, a Norway style relationship with the EU could sell well under indy.

    To date, polling suggests there's a good % of the indy vote that's being saying no for 'tomorrow', but will be saying Yes the moment brexit goes ahead. These appear to be the Jim Sillars' of the scotosphere. It's perfectly understandable; they're looking to kill two haggi with one stone if they can.

    It does mean that unionists have been relying on Jim Sillars to save the union (for their polling No numbers). I'm not sure that was wise.

    Certainly, a Scexiter is not a brexiter. In many ways, the former are 'hardcore' of the indy movement; they back indymax.

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  4. It may depend what is in the Brexit party manifesto. If it is full of half baked/controversial/right wing ideas, including meddling with devolution, then people may give it a bodyswerve - or just vote Tory to get that agenda anyway.

    If their only policy is solely to secure Brexit, then people may feel able to vote Brexit with a clear conscience.

    What are the parallels and lessons for the SNP?

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    1. BP are having a manifesto this time?

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  5. Sad to see people using the Scexit word which was made up by Unionists.

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    1. What would be your choice of name for the ~25% of Yes voters that also back leaving the EU to be e.g. like Norway?

      Kinda long winded to explain in full each time.

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    3. I do laugh though when unionists have used the word 'Scexiter' thinking these people are on their side.

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    4. #ScoNorway if they favour the Norway option or possibly #ScEFTas or for Skier's benefit #ScEEArs 😂🤗😀

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    5. Scizophrenics.

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    6. Scaramanga

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  6. I note Knickerless is on the Trump, NHS and workers rights bandwagon. Since when did the Nat sis give a toss for workers, they support EU austerity.

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    1. Have you thought about supporting Wings GWC.

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  7. It's complicated. I'm just glad that I have Cousin John to lead me through the Division Lobby. Politics can be fun - but I wouldn't bet the farm on it.

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  8. Roddy Collarless-ShirtNovember 1, 2019 at 11:29 AM

    [tries to break awkward silence]

    I say, is anyone else quite partial to the Georgian entry for Eurovision?

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    1. Yes. Artem Dzhingizadze and the Tbilisi Highliners are fantastic.

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  9. BathNES Lib Dems
    ��
    ‏ @bathnesld

    If we work together, and back @nickcoatesnes we will beat Stuart Campbell in North East Somerset #VoteAuldNick #BeatWings #CallOutJoao

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  10. I was incredibly annoyed on meeting the First Minister when I threw a stick and she didn't chase it, nor would she come to heel when I called her,I demanded that she sit and roll over on her belly and the woman still refused to do it, I'm a voter and demand that Nicola Sturgeon do the things I want or I'm not voting for Independence for my country
    The First Minister must do what everybody wants and do it now and I don't care about anything else because I'm a selfish bastirt who identifies as a moron

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    1. That would be the First Minister responsible for abandoning independence during the 2017 campaign, resulting in the loss of 21 seats.
      The FM who responded to that loss of seats by dropping the s30 request and concentrating instead on cosying up to war criminals and trying to prevent england getting what england voted for.

      The same FM who empowered her civil servants to smear her predecessor resulting in the current court case based on faked evidence.

      The FM can go stick her face up a pig.

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    2. "trying to prevent england getting what england voted for."

      Only an idiot would not see this as the quickest route to indy. It's the best way there is to break the UK.

      It's precisely the reason half of Scots back ending the UK, i.e. England not letting Scots have what they voted for. And look at what Sinn Fein have achieved in NI! They've caused so much trouble for England there by blocking brexit, the F'n English C&U party is now campaigning to dump the province.

      SNP should absolutely block brexit be every means possible. They should wave 'Stop brexit' signs in English faces until the latter demand they be given a Section 30 just like they demanded the NI backstop be signed off.

      It would be interested in any evidence you have for the other points.

      I was firmly against against the SNP seeking an indy mandate that they already had in 2017 and I'm still against it for coming UKGE. Only people who do think we do need England's permission would demand the SNP keep seeking indy mandates at every election when the Scottish parliament is already moving to legislate for iref2. The courts can take care of any dispute. Demanding the SNP campaign in English EVEL elections for an indy mandate is particularly lapdogish.

      If you want Scots to make decisions for Scotland, vote SNP. If you want English parties to make the decisions, vote for them. That's the message for 2019 for me.

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  11. A Stuart Campbell sycophant blurts out yet more twisted untrue garbage hoping the uninformed won't notice

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  12. I agree and if no indyref is called by by 2021 I can see independence supporters coming over to wings in their hundreds and thousands when they see the radical proposition on offer.

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    1. Only if the Wings collective 100% backs the SNP this time. If not, it will most likely be blamed for hitting SNP support so harming indy, and this would be well enough justified.

      It would likely destroy any chance of a future Wings party being successful.

      Simply attacking a party never, ever wins you votes. It just turns voters away from you in their droves if that's all you do.

      To win support, you must offer a credible alternative that people can vote for. Currently, Wings obviously offers no such thing. Certainly not for this election.

      I am very uncomfortable with the self-id gender woke crap. I am more than happy to critise the SNP for that.

      However, their 'Stop England's brexit' slogan is not intended for us Scots at all, I'm I'm flummoxed as to why folks think it is. It's how to break the union 101 stuff.

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  13. If you want Brexit and indy then wings is the obvious party

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    1. Is he pro-Brexit now?

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    2. Wings is pro - 'respect the result of the EU referendum', as a dangerous precedent maybe set for the aftermath of a yes victory in indyref2 if unscrupulous tactics are used to ensure it isn't.
      Plus Brexit represents the best possible opportunity for winning indyref2 and delivering independence given the high remain vote in Scotland and the riskiness of constitutional change working in both directions.
      He believes there's no point in using all our efforts saving England or denying England their own legitimate democratic outcome, particularly when respecting democracy is both ethical and can be used to our advantage in delivering independence.

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  14. From today's press conference does not look like any deal in the offering between Brexit Party & Conservatives.

    Looks like the Conservatives will have to fight on to fronts, Brexit party on one side that says that the deal it to soft a Brexit and the remain parties on the other saying that it is too hard.

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  15. There's no such party as Wings and this election is FPTP
    There'll likely never be a Wings party either

    Until you see a Nigel Wings Farage party it doesn't exist because it's all in his mind and mostly mouth at the moment, but you'll bung him a few quid when he asks you for it though won't you

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  16. Why do all you repliers to this blog use nomdeplumes instead of your real names, are you afraid of something or someone.

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    1. We have no use for the cult of personality. National Popsterism is embodied by President Jamez who is hard but fair.

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    2. Personally I have no time for pseudonyms. If you've been gifted a great moniker if life why not use it.

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    3. Mithridates G Bold-MingingtonNovember 1, 2019 at 7:07 PM

      I would only ever use my name as I am very proud of it.

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    4. There's no way William Purves is your real name, your parents couldn't have been that cruel.

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    5. I saw that name and laughed out loud.
      - "William Purves"
      - "Does he?"

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  17. Sorry to say it but Wings has morphed from an excellent analytical site to a self interested proto political party site. It should just be honest and make this clear.

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    1. Hmmm. Wings has obviously not made any mention of the fact in the public domain that he is considering setting up a political party, conducting polling as to its potential or publishing the results.
      No dishonesty and no deception, if he wanted to be dishonest and deceive everybody, you'd have no idea it was happening and he would announce it last minute.

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  18. Dunragit, i'll Dunragit ye.

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    1. Mithridates G Bold-MingingtonNovember 1, 2019 at 7:09 PM

      I went through Dunragit in a train once. I think I burped at the time.

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  19. The Nat sis are holding a flag waving rally in Glesga tomorrow. Lederhosen und Dringel skirts compulsory. The Saltire replaced by the EU nazi flag

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    1. Seriously GWC check out Wings, your a match made in heaven.

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    2. I am banned from Wings.

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    3. Nickerless GoosestepperNovember 1, 2019 at 8:01 PM

      Silence, you dog!

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    4. That's a shame GWC, the best of friends, the worst of enemies, hopefully you guys will kiss and make up soon.

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    5. The sweaty armpit gang are hoping to hold a counter rally. They've hired a taxi to bring them from Carstairs.

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  20. Interpol are looking for a German Weirdo Cunt thought to be on the run in the Glasgow area. He displays a noticeable obsession with the Nazi's. If sighted contact Interpol immediately. Approach with caution as he has been responsible for numerous deaths and injuries through individuals being induced into fits of side splitting belly laughter when they lay eyes on the sad muppet.

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    1. They're also looking for Gay Woman Cordelia to help them with their enquiries.

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    2. Potentially the same person with all the new gender self-id regulations. Can I say person, is that still allowed?

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    3. No. You have to say "being" or "entity".

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    4. Thankyou for the clarification David.

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  21. The Jocko Nat si party seem to be full of German Wierdo Cunts who want Herman the Germans to run Scotland.

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  22. Inspector Wolfgang von TrapNovember 1, 2019 at 8:17 PM

    Have you infiltrated the Scottish nazi party.

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  23. I'm not SNP but will 'lend' them my vote in the general election for 2 reasons: first, in hopes of getting rid of the useless wee Tory we currently have as MP; and secondly because my priority is independence. Once we have that, we can talk about whether to stay in the EU or not.

    There are too many people who still think in UK terms. I want to put Scotland first.

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