Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Crisis for crestfallen Carlaw as extraordinary Panelbase poll gives the SNP a thirty-point lead over the Tories on the Holyrood constituency ballot

Many thanks to the Twitter user 'Flood the Mainstream' for pointing me in the direction of the Holyrood and Westminster numbers from the new Wings/Panelbase poll.  It looks like they were released with less fanfare than almost any voting intention poll I can remember - there's no post on Wings itself, and no mention on Twitter either as far as I can see.  A cynic might wonder if Stuart was actually disappointed that the poll turned out so well for the SNP, and decided to draw as little attention as possible to the results.

Scottish voting intentions for Westminster (Panelbase, 1st-5th May 2020):

SNP 50% (+2)
Conservatives 26% (-1)
Labour 17% (+1)
Liberal Democrats 5% (n/c)
Greens 2% (-1)

Scottish Parliament constituency ballot:

SNP 53% (+2)
Conservatives 23% (-3)
Labour 15% (+1)
Liberal Democrats 5% (-1)
Greens 3% (n/c)

Scottish Parliament regional list ballot:

SNP 48% (n/c)
Conservatives 22% (-4)
Labour 15% (+2)
Liberal Democrats 7% (+1)
Greens 5% (-1)

These numbers are obviously strikingly similar to the YouGov poll of a few days ago, albeit they're fractionally less catastrophic for Labour (emphasis on the word 'fractionally').  And in contrast to YouGov, this is not Panelbase's first Scottish voting intention poll since the general election, which is useful because it brings to light a fascinating trend we might not otherwise have been aware of - there appears to have been a drop in Tory support, particularly at Holyrood level, since as recently as late March.  Is the disastrous handling of the pandemic by the Tory government in London, and indeed Jackson Carlaw's misjudged politicking at Holyrood, coming home to roost?

As with all Holyrood polls this year, the seats projection suggests that the SNP are comfortably on course for an overall majority: SNP 74, Conservatives 27, Labour 18, Liberal Democrats 7, Greens 3.  That would give the pro-independence parties in combination an astonishing 60% of the seats in the Scottish Parliament.  We know from what happened in 2016 that there's far from any guarantee that these numbers will hold up as polling day approaches, but nevertheless there does appear to be a golden opportunity here to win a crystal-clear independence mandate if the SNP leadership can get their ducks in a row and define in advance exactly what it would be a mandate for.  Would it be for independence itself, or would it be yet another mandate for a referendum?  If the latter, how can we be sure this time that the mandate will be honoured and that no Westminster veto will be tolerated?


  1. Not very different to the YouGov poll which is encouraging.

  2. This is great news. Not so great for the Conservatives and catastrophic for Labour even though their vote share has increased marginally. Hard to believe they had 41 MPs just a few years ago when Jim Murphy managed to lose 40 of them and the Tories of South Edinburgh decided Ian Murray was singing from the same hymn sheet as them. Equally hard to believe that people like Margaret Curran and Douglas Alexander were taken seriously as politicians not too long ago. Fin de siècle right enough.

  3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    1. The latter was a "gubbing" in the sense that 38 is a bigger number than 62?

    2. Let's learn arithmetic with GWC!
      Lesson 1: 38 is greater than 62 because nat sis. Or foreigners. Or something.
      Covidia isn't sure because it's not supposed to think.

  4. It is hardly surprising that Stu Campbell would prefer not to mention that the SNP is doing extremely well. And, of course, they are. Extremely encouraging to see these numbers confirmed.

  5. Just to say I’ve had two sections of the poll written up and posted on my Facebook page by Stu. He certainly wasn’t hiding it.

    1. Let's be clear: do those "two sections of the poll" include the Holyrood and Westminster numbers? Because if they don't, you're completely missing the point - those are the numbers I was referring to. He didn't post them on his own site, and as far as I can see neither he nor anyone else posted them on Twitter. It would be very, very surprising if he posted them on Facebook having not posted them anywhere else - and I very much doubt if he did.

    2. no need to keep refreshing that twitter feed...

      all the hate has led to a final and deserved sayonara

  6. I can't remember the SNP ever being in a stronger position in polling terms.

    I can only see them getting stronger at the expense of the Tories as their incompetence as a government comes more and more to light.

    1. I don't think SNP is getting stronger at the expense of Tories. I'd be very surprised if any statistically significant number of Tory voters turned to the SNP. What I think is happening is - a certain number of Tory voters is turning to Labour (especially now with Starmer) and LibDems and a certain number of independence minded Labour (and probably Green) voters is turning to the SNP.
      There never was any significant number of voters going directly from Tories to the SNP. Labour and LibDems are a sort of intermediary stage for those voters before they come to the SNP (if they do).
      But these are really good numbers - and, yes, there has to be a discussion what they mean for the SNP for the time after the Holyrood election. I think both Sturgeon and the SNP leadership (bar a couple of gradualists who are far to comfortable in Westminster) realise that it can't go on as it used to till now with this section 30 order.

  7. "Would it yet be another mandate for a referendum?"

    How many mandates does the SNP need? The SNP world champions at mandate collections never used.

    They will only be taken seriously if they put a mandate for INDEPENDENCE in their manifesto for the 2021 Scottish election.

  8. It is of course superb when the British parties get a kicking at elections. What's not to like to see all these signatories to the Ragmans roll getting dumped by the electorate. However, most of the major British party big diddies will still pitch up in Holyrood due to the list system. Fraser, Tomkins, Baillie, Grant all still sitting there never having won an election for well over 20 years since Holyrood's inception.

    Is the SNP the party of Scottish independence or the British Labour Party in Scotland in disguise?

  9. To be fair, Jackie Bailie has won elections on several occasions. Albeit based on her ability to convince the local electorate that nuclear weapons on their doorstep creates local prosperity in direct contradiction of the evidence. It is both despicable and admirable in equal measure.

    1. Ok - Bailie is not a good example because I was wrong but there are plenty more of the British list jobs for life MSPs who have never won an election.

  10. Jackie Baillie is amazing. As the junior minister she was proposing to close the hospital in Alexandria. Now she campaigns as its saviour

  11. Dundee Working ClassMay 8, 2020 at 2:58 PM

    The Dumbarton constituency for the Scottish Parliament overlaps the SouthWest corner of the Argyll and Bute constituency for Westminster (Roseneath peninsula, Helensburgh and Cardross, the most staunchly "Tory" area of the Argyll and Bute constituency)

    Baillie relies on the pro-establishment tactical anti-SNP votes in the Argyll section of her Dumbarton constituency, because apart from a couple of loyalist/ OO neighbourhoods in Dumbarton itself (Silverton one example), she is not popular in "working class" areas of Balloch, the Vale, Renton and the majority of suburban Dumbarton.

    Sadly, Cardross, Helensburgh and the Peninsula are the areas with the highest trunouts, and areas where a significant number of people would vote for literally anybody who was in a position to stop the SNP, hence Baillie's pro-Trident, pro-Establishment stance.

    As much as I have no respect for Baillie or indeed any Tory (Conservative/New Labour), she plays to her audience with skill, knows the demographics of her constituency and is always guaranteed an easy ride from the Conservatives and LibDems (who incidentally did not campaign at all at the 2011 and 2016 Holyrood elections in Baillie's constituency).