Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Yes vote soars to new all-time high of 48% in scintillating Survation survey

New Survation poll :

Should Scotland be an independent country?

Yes 48% (+1)
No 52% (-1)

So all three of tonight's polls are showing a 'statistical tie', meaning that the margin of error leaves open the possibility that either side are in the lead.  However, that only holds true if you look at each poll in isolation - if you take the three polls together, it becomes much more likely that No have a slender lead, albeit only if the polling firms are getting their methodology roughly right.  The latter point has been the million dollar question all along.

Malevolent John Rentoul, he of the colonialist demands that Scotland adjusts its national identity to suit his own personal tastes, is claiming tonight to have "evidence" that the polls are systemically biased towards Yes.  He says that he's spoken to someone who saw the Yes campaign's canvass returns up to Thursday of last week, and that they show Yes to be much further behind.  I'm not going to completely dismiss this idea out of hand, because it's perfectly plausible that the polls are systemically biased in either direction, and although Rentoul is a thoroughly objectionable individual, he does at least tend to apply some rigour to his journalism.  But there's something really odd about the claim, and perhaps someone with more knowledge of how canvassing is collated and analysed can offer a potential explanation.  The one thing we know about canvassing is that people don't tell the whole truth, so Yes canvassers will get better results for Yes and No canvassers will get better results for No.  It does therefore seem fantastically improbable to me that the Yes canvassing returns are worse than the results of two very recent scientifically-conducted telephone polls, including one commissioned by the No campaign itself (ie. the 46.5% Yes vote reported by Survation on Saturday).  Could there be some sort of time-lag with the canvassing figures, with old data only being very gradually replaced as people go round houses again?  Or would the centrally-collated figures always be bang up-to-date?  Are the numbers somehow adjusted to take account of people's dishonesty, so that a best guess of the true position can be arrived at?  Could it be the adjusted guesstimate that Rentoul is talking about, rather than the raw returns which surely must be better for Yes than he suggests?

Certainly on the face of it, there's a lot that doesn't quite ring true about the story, so although it's unsettling, we probably just have to work on the assumption that it's wrong (or that Rentoul is guilty of wishful thinking in the way he's interpreted the information).  So let's look at it the other way around.  Is there any obvious reason for supposing that tonight's three polls might be systemically biased in favour of the No campaign?  Yes, there is, and it's a drum I've been banging for a very long time.  As far as we know, not one of tonight's pollsters has weighted by country of birth.  It's been long-established that ICM have too many English-born people on their panel, and although we don't know that the same applies to Survation and Opinium, it seems a reasonable assumption that it might do, given that it's a problem that's been uncovered by three different online polling firms.  If so, weighting by country of birth would only help Yes by a small amount - but that's OK, because they're only behind by a small amount!

As already stated on the previous post, there's a particular issue with Opinium's decision to weight by recalled 2010 vote, which other pollsters used to do, but stopped after it became clear that a lot of people weren't recalling accurately.  Although the effect is diluted by the fact that Opinium additionally weight by 2011 vote recall, the net result of the two weightings is a reduction in the Yes vote.  If they only weighted by 2011 recall, in line with the practice of all but one of the other firms, the Yes vote would be considerably higher - and indeed there would probably be a Yes lead.

Sticking with the theme of what would happen if you applied one firm's methodology to another firm's data, Survation would be showing an even tighter race if they applied Opinium's very strict turnout filter that only includes people who are 10/10 certain to vote...

Survation (absolutely definite voters) :

Yes 48.6%
No 51.4%

There's the perennial problem with Survation that they've had to severely upweight under-25s and respondents from the South of Scotland electoral region.  When trying to guess how that might have distorted the overall results of the poll, what you're really hoping to see is (paradoxically) a very low Yes vote among those groups, because that maximises the chances that the overall Yes vote has been underestimated due to sampling variation.  In this case, it's a middling picture - the Yes vote among under-25s doesn't particularly look too high or too low, while the Yes vote in the south is maybe on the high side, but not necessarily by that much.

* * *


Swing required for 2 out of 7 pollsters to show Yes ahead or level : 0.5%

Swing required for 5 out of 7 pollsters to show Yes ahead or level : 2.0%

Swing required for 6 out of 7 pollsters to show Yes ahead or level : 2.5%

Swing required for 7 out of 7 pollsters to show Yes ahead or level : 7.0%

* * *


Yes only slip back in this update of the Poll of Polls due to the last ICM poll (which now almost certainly looks like an extreme outlier) being replaced in the sample.  But we presume that Yes are still being understated due to the fact that an ancient Ipsos-Mori poll is still being taken into account.  That problem should finally be rectified tomorrow - unless of course Ipsos-Mori's No-friendly status persists and they fail to converge in the way that YouGov and TNS have.

MEAN AVERAGE (excluding Don't Knows) :

Yes 47.4% (-0.7)
No 52.6% (+0.7)

MEAN AVERAGE (not excluding Don't Knows) :

Yes 42.7% (-0.9)
No 47.4% (+0.3)

MEDIAN AVERAGE (excluding Don't Knows) :

Yes 47.8% (-0.1)
No 52.2% (+0.1)

(The Poll of Polls is based on a rolling average of the most recent poll from each of the pollsters that have been active in the referendum campaign since September 2013, and that adhere to British Polling Council rules. At present, there are seven - YouGov, TNS-BMRB, Survation, Panelbase, Ipsos-Mori, Opinium and ICM. Whenever a new poll is published, it replaces the last poll from the same company in the sample. Changes in the Poll of Polls are generally glacial in nature due to the fact that only a small portion of the sample is updated each time.)


  1. I'm confused. Didn't the last Survation, commissioned by BT, have an 8-point lead for No? How is this only a 1-point swing? Is it a rounding thing?

  2. All square.... differential turnout takes it :)

  3. Keaton : I'm comparing it to the last Survation online poll, not to the telephone poll. To answer your question on the earlier thread, I'm also comparing the ICM online poll to the last ICM online poll. The only logic for comparing to the second-last ICM online poll would be that the sample sizes were more similar to each other, which I think would be pushing it a bit.

    But the Scotsman are naturally comparing it to the last poll they actually commissioned themselves, which is what newspapers generally do (unless it suits their agenda not to occasionally).

  4. They're going to stuff the ballot. There is no other explanation. The polls don't match the street, they have never matched the street. Suddenly on Eve of Referendum they're all the same fucking figure? Call me a tin foil hat but we're being robbed.

  5. Presumably the polls don't match 'the street' because the no voters are keeping a low profile in the face of aggression and intimidation?

    Or it could be MI5. Here's hoping ;0)

  6. I'm guessing that's not Alasdair Allan, MSP for the Western Isles.

    Thanks. Very honest of you to do so, since it makes the ICM look rather grim.

  7. Folks 4 weeks ago we were nowhere. Now it is to close to call. On the day it could go our way.

  8. What precisely are the safeguards in place against ballot box stuffing?

  9. There are no safeguards. The only way to beat the corruption of Westminster and their vote rigging Labour stooges is to have such a massive vote Yes that it is impossible to overturn.

  10. IMHO ... I read somewhere recently a wee quote from Alex Salmond along the lines of , he was comfortable with the security of the count as the Electoral Commision and Police Scotland were presiding over it . Now I would like to think that if AS , a man who has spent his entire political life to get us to this point , thinks the vote is safe then we should probably be assured that it is indeed safe ?
    Any thoughts anyone ?

  11. In other words I'm sure he's not just leaving it to blind faith ? I hope ! Lol

  12. Edinburgh agreement should have had UN Observers FROM THE START.

  13. Calm down folks, don't worry too much about ballot box 'slight of hand' because although I don't doubt for a single minute that the UK would do anything to keep our resources in the elites pocket, it will be very difficult if not impossible to do this, on top of the normal overseers wings has a couple of overseers at each count.

    As for the Poll %, as has been repeatedly indicated the polls do not reflect what seems to be happening on the ground, and I myself have witnessed hundreds of people on twitter over the past week alone saying they or their relatives/friends have shifted from hard No to Yes. I rarely venture on to any other 'time lines' apart from wings, so that's just the tweets that are copied onto my or the Wings site.

    So the polls are picking up a swing to Yes, but are they picking up the swing in numbers that are happening 'on the ground'?

    Again it will come down a lot to how the DK's will break.

    The question then becomes why are people still DK after all this time and how are they getting their information over the next few days to make up their mind?

    I would confidently state that the huge grassroots campaign that Yes has built up, will have an enormous advantage with the DK's.

    Simply put they are people who have not listened to politicians and don't know who to believe, so will be likely to listen to people who have a compelling case for or against independence.

    Now if one side has the advantage in this respect it has got to be Yes.

    If as a lot of data suggests the DK's are breaking at almost 2 to 1 for Yes then we are in a very good position with these last two polls.

    If as RIC and the YES hubs claim that the majority of people asking to be registered to vote for the first time or for the first time in years, have said they are registering to vote YES, this will also make a huge difference to the result, as none of those people will be signed up for political polling companies.

    Not be long 'till the polling stations open!!!!!!!

  14. Good and bad from the polls tonight. It's disappointing that they are so consistent and showing No ahead by 4 points but there are enough undecideds out there to make a difference. Yes need to win 3/4 of the Don't Knows and it looks like they are doing it on current trends.

    If the polls tomorrow say the same then I'll be disappointed. I'd hope for at least one showing 50 / 50 or Yes ahead.

  15. I realise that the following may not be entirely methodologically sound in this talented company but, worried about the No bias in the over 65 age group, I made some assumptions to help me come to a conclusion.

    The assumptions:
    a) Over 65s vote 70-30 in favour of No (worst case)
    b) 80% of over 65s vote
    c) 20% of electorate is over 65 (less of an assumption, more of a fact)
    d) 80% of under 65s vote

    The Conclusion: the arithmetic based on these assumptions means that the rest of the electorate (all groups together under 65) need to vote 55-45% Yes-No to balance the No votes of the older cohort to reach an overall 50% of the total vote.

    That wee exercise has actually boosted my confidence again. Comments from polling analysts with a more nuanced perspective appreciated!

  16. Stickers- the polls aren't sophisticated enough to show 50/50..... 5 each maybe, and that's exactly what they are saying :)

  17. The count security will be tight but that has no relaton whatsoever with ballot stuffing which the Labour BritNats have been doing for decades (past masters at it and not shy of shoving 10s of thousands maybe in the referendum 150K into the ballot).

    As was said - we need large YES win to beat them

  18. "@WilliamsJon
    Most telling stat in Mail #indyref poll: only 0.1% of previous undecideds going no, vast majority breaking yes. Could swing things #Scotland"

  19. If you lose - and I accept that it is still in the balance - it is due to the fact that you have zero credibility on the currency.

    Your leader is a man who claimed in 1999 that sterling was a 'millstone around Scotland's neck,' and who backed the disastrous Euro, which has caused misery around Europe, but who now says with a straight face that Scotland has to adopt the pound.

    He and YES have ZERO credibility on the currency

  20. Come on Stevie ! If you're going to make wild statements like that you have to at least give us an indication of how they are going to do it ? At what point in the process is anyone going to be able to stuff ballots ?

  21. Anon : The electorate disagree with you - the polls consistently show that the public think the London parties are bluffing. The currency attack line worked for a while, but Darling overestimated its shelf-life.

  22. cut and paste arguments.... go you!

  23. Stickers, you need to look at what has happened to the poll gap.

    In ICM in one month it closed from twelve percent to four percent.

    In Survation it closed from seven percent to four percent in days.

    In Opinium it stayed the same at four percent.

    This is a tight vote. If the ground game is like the US Democrat Party ground game then YES will win.

    It also helps that the C2DE undecideds are twice the numerical number of ABC1 undecideds. Thats fertile ground for YES.

  24. the big question: are people going to stay up thru thursday night to be teased with dripfed results, or just go to bed and wake up to be hit with the result? I'm a "hit me" kinda guy myself...

  25. Very interesting stat on twitter, if we are indeed at 48% then we need 80,000 votes to win!

    how many signed up for the first time?

  26. Am I correct in thinking the people who are recently registered are not picked up in the polls?

    If so, do people think this would be in our favour?

  27. James Kelly - question : given that we"re likely to see a minimum 85% voter turnout, how accurate can the polls be in that context of lots of demographics that have never voted before and the huge % of the population that will vote. In a GE, I think it would work but in this referendum I don't know.

  28. Anon : The electorate disagree with you - the polls consistently show that the public think the London parties are bluffing. The currency attack line worked for a while, but Darling overestimated its shelf-life.

    That may well be the case but if there is independence you will see that it is not a bluff.

    What is Salmond's alternative? To refuse to pay the Scottish % of the national debt. Which would be bad for the rest of the UK but disastrous for a newly independent Scotland.

    But the fundamental point is that you cannot rewrite history. The £ was described as a millstone around Scotland's neck by Salmond in 1999. He advocated the Euro which has proven to be a disaster across Europe. He now complains that Scotland is not being offered the opportunity to use the same £! A massive fail on the key issue for an 'independent' country

  29. Anonymous (September 16, 2014 at 11:01 PM)

    I too noticed the almost 100% from UNDECIDED to YES.

    For the life of me I do not have a clue as to how someone can be undecided this late in the game but they are.

    But the key is that the UNDECIDED seem to be two to one C2DE people who are natural YES.

    The news tonight could have been so bad......

    Having said that, I think Operation Fear and the Three Stooges accomplished what they wanted to accomplish and that was to stop the major bleeding.

    The race is now a stistical tie and the pollster story on Friday is that the undecideds broke to ________ in a two to one ratio..... Remember the top line number with all undecideds excluded is rubbish and means little.

  30. Why would starting life as a debt free country and massive natural resources be a bad thing?

    What gives you the right to deprive us of the currency we've been using for 300 years? Equal partners remember so equal shares of the assets.

    YOU cannot rewrite history either. brown praising the banks to the sky and CUTTING corporation tax twice.
    LABOUR cheat Scotland out of the Parliament that we voted for in 1979.

    England spending a Millenium trying,and failing, to destroy the very idea of Scotland.

    Have some more history. The McCrone Report. The Iraq War. Willie McRae's murder. Plenty more where that came from my little traitor BlairNat.

  31. Hope the C2DE the get the tax from the ABC1 to ensure they are better off next week than they are now

  32. Why would starting life as a debt free country and massive natural resources be a bad thing?

    Because after a default you would have so little credibility with the markets that you (a) would not be able to borrow or (b) would have to borrow at such high rates that it would be prohibitive.

    What gives you the right to deprive us of the currency we've been using for 300 years? Equal partners remember so equal shares of the assets.

    You could of course use the pound but you would be in the same position as Panama vis-a-vis the US ref their use of the dollar.

    But even if you got a currency union what sort of independence would it be to have your monetary policy decided by the BofE in London? I thought the whole point of independence was to free yourselves from London?

    YOU cannot rewrite history either. brown praising the banks to the sky and CUTTING corporation tax twice.

    Quite agree - I am not Labour! But equally, Salmond actively supoported the disastrous RBS expansion under Goodwin.

    (Very few people were anti-banks in the boom times when they were a major contributor to the Treasury, thus funding all sorts of public spending!)

  33. Why would starting life as a debt free country and massive natural resources be a bad thing?

    Because after a default you would have so little credibility with the markets that you (a) would not be able to borrow or (b) would have to borrow at such high rates that it would be prohibitive.

    What gives you the right to deprive us of the currency we've been using for 300 years? Equal partners remember so equal shares of the assets.

    You could of course use the pound but you would be in the same position as Panama vis-a-vis the US ref their use of the dollar.

    But even if you got a currency union what sort of independence would it be to have your monetary policy decided by the BofE in London? I thought the whole point of independence was to free yourselves from London?

    YOU cannot rewrite history either. brown praising the banks to the sky and CUTTING corporation tax twice.

    Quite agree - I am not Labour! But equally, Salmond actively supoported the disastrous RBS expansion under Goodwin.

    (Very few people were anti-banks in the boom times when they were a major contributor to the Treasury, thus funding all sorts of public spending!)

  34. Patrick Roden, the ground is indeed fertile;

    118,640 registered in the last month.
    181,360 registered since 2012

    So thats 300,000 new registrations largely because of the referendum.

    But......there are an additional 1,442,686 who are registered but did NOT vote in the last two elections!!!

    IF the turnout on the current registration is 80% and the 20% non voting are chronic non-voting, then that means there will be 885,622 new/refreshed voters who have never voted before or last voted a long time ago.

    So guess what? There is plenty of field to harvest 80,000 votes.

  35. Cannot stop scotland using the pound sterling. But can agree to not having a currency union.
    So what is it currency option

  36. Do these polls pick up newly registered people?

  37. James Kelly, " the polls consistently show that the public think the London parties are bluffing."

    I agree, had the public believed Westminster, the bleeding would have started with YES.

    I cut my teeth politically in the USA and have volunteered for both Republicans and Democrats, helping with some of the stats work.

    If the YES ground game on Thursday is like what the Democrats do, I would rather be in the YES camp than the NO camp.

    This huge number of brand new voters, 300,000 plus possible 1,000,000 plus of voters who are voting after not voting a long time, it would scare me to death if I was in the NO camp.

    Right now, the NO camp is doing back of the napkin math on what those 1,500,000 fresh voters are going to do. They are in panic mode right now. That voting bloc is hostile to NO. Its like the newly registered Latino voting block in the USA which scares republicans.

    Assuming the standard voters slightly favor NO, if 53% of the "new/refreshed voters" say YES then its all over for NO.

  38. Cannot stop scotland using the pound sterling. But can agree to not having a currency union.
    So what is it currency option

    Scotland could, in theory, use any currency it wanted without a currency union; the £, the dollar, the indian rupee, the Thai bhat, etc.

    But, in practice if it did so it would need to:

    (a) build up massive reserves of that cuurency, which it could not afford to do.

    (b) its monetary policy would be determined by the central bank for that currency. What sort of currency is that?

    The fact that the YES campaign is not advocating a Scottish currency shows how weak its position is on this fundamental issue.

  39. Cannot stop scotland using the pound sterling. But can agree to not having a currency union.
    So what is it currency option

    Scotland could, in theory, use any currency it wanted without a currency union; the £, the dollar, the indian rupee, the Thai bhat, etc.

    But, in practice if it did so it would need to:

    (a) build up massive reserves of that cuurency, which it could not afford to do.

    (b) its monetary policy would be determined by the central bank for that currency. What sort of currency is that?

    The fact that the YES campaign is not advocating a Scottish currency shows how weak its position is on this fundamental issue.

  40. Link for new registration data;


  41. No the polls don't usually pick up the newly registered people, as a few of them use a list of people who have agreed to participate in political polling.

    Strange claim re: canvas returns from SNP, I would imagine any canvas returns would be on behalf of the Yes campaign but whatever if you go on twitter you will regularly see people who take part in canvasing publishing the results on twitter.

    I can't remember when I last saw a return published that did not show Yes in a very healthy position, but more importantly, James is correct when he says that canvas returns are not always a good way to gauge how people are voting as they will tell people what they think they want to hear, but a lot of the canvasing is being done in areas that have been canvased before, with the results published, and they have looked very good for Yes, with some very good growth in people saying they will vote Yes.

    It was reported by Rupert Murdoch a couple of weeks ago that Alex Salmond had private polling that indicated that the true Yes% was something like 54 with no on 46%

    One things for sure I have not trusted polling companies up 'till now, in the campaign and wont start to now.

  42. Ian Baird, let me give you some encoraging news on the over 65 voters that may aid in your study.

    We know that most elderly have already been registered to vote and they vote in each and every election. They are core voters, you can count in them!!

    We know that there are 300,000 newly registered voters and another 1,000,000 plus who have not voted in a long time.

    What does that voting pool look like?

    I would guess average age is well under 65 and social catagory is many C2DE.

    What they are not is "missing elderly."

  43. I'm puzzled by this idea that newly registered voters who never bothered to vote before are somehow invisible to the pollsters. The polls include people from all sections of society including low paid / unemployed / benefit claimants / social housing tenants. These people aren't invisible. They are there. They can be polled. And if they're not really open to the idea of taking part in polls, presumably they just offer them payment in return?

  44. Canvas returns may well be bad for YES locally ,like the borders but overall the canvas returns I have seen published are in the 70/30 for yes region

  45. The undecideds are going to break one way or another.

    In the Surveyation poll in a matter of a few days, the undecideds are breaking 100% to YES.

    But what percentage in breaking is needed for YES? Yes needs 71% of undecideds to break YES to win.

    Very doable and I dare say likely if my thoughts on who the undecideds are holds true.

    Hat tip to the twitter link of the US ABC News person who quickly spotted that,


  46. Can imagine if we woke up on Friday morning and it was a No vote, the crowing of the BritNats would be insufferable. The whole London Media Industrial Complex would be triumphalist with headlines like '' The subsidy junkie jocks bottled it.''We'll get that for the next 20 years until the next referendum.

    A nation with self respect governs itself, a nation with no self respect doesn't govern itself.

  47. Alisdair Allan 10.23pm

    Stalin '' It's not who votes, but who counts the votes.''

  48. Would this 'missing million' not be picked up by polls? Wouldn't it just be those who only recently registered that are not represented?

  49. Assuming YES does win the vote count, what will the pollsters state?

    1. The polls were correct because the actual result fell within the final polls margin of error.

    2. Their poll correctly caught a narrowing of the vote in the last month which continued through Thursday.

    3. At the last minute, the large number of undecideds broke ____ to one for YES. This was predicted and shown in their final poll with large numbers of undecided going YES.

    In the end, the pollsters will be able to tell their clients that they were correct!! They are NOT in the business of hitting a hole in one, thats for golfers.

    How do I know thats what they will say? Been there and heard that in the US time and time again.

  50. Anonymous, the "missing million" is likely reflected at least partly in those that are C2DE and undecided.

    In the US, many pollsters at the end of a race will give a final number forcing all the undecideds into an actual vote.

    This idea of a final poll with ten percent undecided allows every pollster to be right in the end no matter what happens!!

    But I do think that a section of undecideds have not been picked up.

  51. A) Rentoul is and always has been a gland.

    B) How can anybody not know how they voted?

  52. So the people who were already registered but haven't recently voted are the "missing million", and are usually represented in polling samples? But those who are only recently registered (approx 300,000) are probably not represented in polling samples?

  53. I guess it depends on whether the poll is online, phone or door-to-door.

    Are the missing million likely to be adequately represented in the cohort of people signed up to participate in Survation or YouGov's online panels? Fairly unlikely. Those panels might have C2DE people on them who can be weighted up, but they are perhaps more regular political participants than the newly registered voters have been up to now.

    Are the missing million (particularly the younger ones) accurately represented in polls of landlines? Do they answer the phone and agree to talk to pollsters?

    Do door-to-door interviewers pay sufficient attention to the areas these people live in?

    I appreciate that James has said that standard weighting methodology ought to give an accurate picture of the electorate. Here's one question I have: turnout. Pollsters will have to estimate what they believe turnout will be and weight accordingly. In most elections the missing million cohort will have been downweighted by at least some pollsters because they don't have a voting history. Is that happening now too?

    Any thoughts?

  54. Personally, I am relieved by the polls tonight.

    I had been worried about YES dropping to 40% after the huge negative media blitz all week long.
    The close results prove the Betfair payouts were just a publicity stunt.

    The fact is the NO camp have used the full weight of the British state and the hostile media to throw every lie and threat in the book at the Yes Campaign.

    And our vote is still at an all time high, going into the polls..

    In the privacy of the ballot box, I can see many reluctant No voters, going with their hearts and switching to Yes - even if tbey expect a few hurdles along the way.

    The chance to make history has an emotional pull.

    I expect the NO campaign is very worried tonight.

  55. I have been polled several times, and I have never stated that I am 10/10 likely to vote. I always quote 9/10, because I might die before the day!

    Nevertheless, I am a YES, and I have been since just after the 1966 election.

  56. ''The fact is the NO camp have used the full weight of the British state and the hostile media to throw every lie and threat in the book at the Yes Campaign.''

    It isn't Project Fear, more like Project Apocalypse,''There will be earthquakes, volcano's, tsunamis, famine, plagues of locusts, pestilence, floods, Scots will live in caves eating oatcakes if you vote Yes.''

    Bit like the story of Chicken Licken '' The sky will fall in, the sky will fall in.''

    And the No campaign is upset about some person throwing an egg !!! and it was probably a False Flag operation anyway.

  57. On this currency that people seem to want to trundle along with. I thought Tom Hunter's original survey of the key issues for the referendum placed the £ and the EU a long way down a list for voters. I can't find where that was reported (haven't really looked) but perhaps James can check.
    It appears that one dude needs to talk up the alarm about it but from the conversations I have had on the doorstep it rarely comes up and when it does it's not much more than a passing comment. Others experience might be different.

  58. Polls are wrong we are winning. When is the Ipsos poll out that's one poll I am interested in.

  59. If there has been some movement to Yes from Undecided, as highlighted by these polls, hopefully the Yougov poll will put us in the lead. Based on the National identity thing....Panelbase might have us in the lead too.

    I may be being cynical, but it wouldn't surprise me to see us in the lead the 3 polls today.

    That would be 3-3 and and a dead heat between the pollsters as well.

  60. @ Chalk

    I like your enthusiasm, but I'm a bit more cautious about the Panelbase/YouGov polls tonight. It would be fantastic if they did though.

  61. Nick Robinson on BBC saying that 'No' are confident of a minimum of 56%, according to 'insiders'....

  62. @Thistle

    Yes are confident of winning

    No are confident of winning

    I am intrigued as to where the no campaign are getting their canvass returns from though, as they've never been into the poor areas, I have never seen them around my middle class village, incidentally where there is a massive yes presence.

    I heard 4 of them were going around Mastrick in Aberdeen last night, they must have maybe canvassed 50 - 100houses?

    Maybe they are virtually upweighting their canvass returns.

    They just don't have the feet on the ground to provide up to the minute canvassing data, not like the yesmo system that is in place.

  63. It's true that pollsters use the data they get from people from low income backgrounds, and weight these figures to attempt to get an overall picture of how this demographic will vote but consider this:

    Although these people will be from a low income group they will have needed to be politically aware, in order to be considered for political polling.

    Just say I want to poll for a car company. I am not going to want people who have no interest in cars or don't have a drivers licence.

    I want people who drive and who are aware of cars, so that as a car company I can find out what it is about my cars or the cars of my competitors that people like or dislike.

    So the people signed up from the poorer backgrounds would be politically engaged enough to feed back to the polling companies, how they were voting or how they were reacting to certain campaigns etc.

    The thing about the people who have been registering since the campaign started (over 300,000) is they have not been engaged with politics for years if ever.

    So my own conclusion is that the people who will be signed up to polling companies will have their own bias, as being politically engaged they will have become labour/SNP/Libdem etc voters,

    They may also dislike/like certain politicians/political parties, meaning they will have some in-built resistance to being persuaded to believe them.

    The new voters on the other hand, will have signed up because they believe there is something worth registering and voting for, ie they are not registering to be persuaded, they are registering because they are already persuaded.

    If you have ever tried to talk politics with someone who isn't interested, you will know how much resistance they have to even consider the issues, so to get these people interested enough to register is a remarkable feat.

    I can honestly only imagine that the ones who have registered to vote no, have done so because of some 'Unionist' belief that are held dear by some sections of the Rangers family, or something along these lines.

    The information that we have from the campaigners who signed these voters up is the majority did so, saying that they intended to vote Yes and because they are not politically engaged they are not reflected in the polling companies statistics.

    Just my ramblings though.


  64. ‏@TimReidBBC
    Pollster Peter Kellner from Yougov: am I absolutely sure that no is slightly ahead? "No I'm not"

  65. BBC Nick Robinson will say or do anything that he is asked to by the No campaign.

    If you have been using Twitter, you will have seen just how much people from the No campaign try to use the polling results to demoralise the Yes grassroots campaign.

    Blair McDougal, McTernan, McColm etc etc constantly crow on about how the polls show that the Yes campaign is losing or is having no impact.

    So lets not listen to what the man who's credibility will probably never recover from his 'The first minister didn't answer the question' gaffe, says.

  66. @Scottish_Skier

    Does that give us any hint? I would say that even if YouGov today replicates the 48/52 polls of yesterday, Kellner would rightly say that he is not "absolutely sure" that No is "slightly ahead".

  67. Xabi, without getting ahead of ourselves (which I am about to do) that response indicates to me that Yes are ahead with Yougov.

  68. David Maddox of the Scotsman tweeted that private Yes briefings say they think they have 53-57%. No are saying they have 55%.

    This indyref has done at lot of things but it aint going to break mathematical laws.

  69. @ David S

    Just to clear that up - is it Yes thinks No has 53-57%, or that Yes itself has those figures?

  70. Yes think they have 53-57%

  71. @chalks

    Does it? Whatever the context of Kellner's remarks, i think *that* is probably not the only thing Kellner said. My wild guess is that we just have a journalist highlighting a quote that sounds dramatic and, thus, more interesting for people.

    We have been trying to read too much into mere comments lately.

    Still, I totally hope your are right.

  72. Very true Xabi, it's mental isn't it.

    The slightest tweet, the slightest comment is analysed for some hidden meaning LOL

  73. Very interesting that BT never shared yesterdays polls either on twitter or facebook.

    Normally they are all over these crowing like mad, maybe concerned that there vote won't turn up?

    Yes Scotland used these polls to inspire another last huge push on the GOTV.

  74. @Scottish_Skier @chalks

    Kellner may even still not have the figures for YouGov's last poll. If the poll is for tomorrow's Times/Sun, it is very likely that the field work is being finished this morning and weighted and prepared for publication during the afternoon.

  75. Surely if the polls are a statistical tie or even if no is polling slightly ahead then that must be great news for us as the so called missing million aren't being polled.I am convinced the vast majority of those will be backing a yes vote as it was because of Westminster government policies that many went of the radar in the first place if they are added to the yes count then in reality if these people do come out and vote Yes should win comfortably by maybe over 60% of the vote I certainly feel very confident.

  76. I think we can basically discount what the campaigns say. It's a day before the ballot opens, it's close, so there's nothing to lose by saying you're winning. Someone from No said they had 57% in Dundee, so it's obviously just bullshit. I looked at the ICM poll, and they're still not country of birth weighting. It seems to me that's not a small thing - even if it doesn't massively impact result, it's unprofessional. Also, it's amazing the number of DKs who, even when pushed, won't give an answer. They're still clinging to the 'Shy No' thing, but that seems suspect to me. 'No' would be the 'safe' answer, the 'respectable' answer that an ordinary person would like to give to a pollster. I think these people are just as likely to be Yessers who think, because of the scare campaign, that coming out for Yes might sound 'daft' or 'reckless'. Let's see

  77. I know both sides will naturally claim victory but the claims of % are interesting. Our local No campaign has been sending targeted emails to hardened Nationalists. I have heard other examples of this. I dont think they will have a feel for the whole picture as well as the Yes Camp.

    m Reid @TimReidBBC
    Salmond says "on Friday when yes have won with a decent margin" UK Gov and pro union parties will change mind on 'no' to currency union.

    We shall see.

  78. The pollsters have positioned themselves so that they can't be accused of trying to engineer a result either way. It is now so close that they can collectively blame it on a late surge if 'Yes' do finally pull it off and win. They are covering their testicles with their collective conniving/don't have a scooby paws
    I can't say I'm super confident, just quietly so. Lying awake staring at the ceiling at two o'clock this morning worrying away. In the cold light of day night time fears dissipate.

  79. *not emails. Mailshots & Leaflets.

  80. *not emails. Mailshots & Leaflets.

  81. I've yet to meet one of these so-called 'Shy No' people.

    I find that No voters are the most vocal and immediately presume that whoever they are spouting off to is a fellow Salmond-hater.

    I've honestly not encountered a Yes voter keen to ram their opinions down my throat in polite company outwith the context of a general discussion about the referendum.

  82. I think Yes will get a respectable 48-49%.

  83. Why do this unless the hardened 'Yessers' are pulling their legs for a bit of fun or are even 'shy 'Yes'? Fascinating stuff.

  84. I think no will get 47%

  85. Wow. ICM having a really serious problem with non-response from Scottish people.

    74(-8)% Scottish Born in the weighted base. Even worse than the last ICM for the Scotsman yet Yes increased.

    From regional data, you can see the more Scots born that responded, the higher the Yes vote.

    You can see why Martin Boon is concerned.

  86. It's also interesting that in the ICM poll we win Mid Scotland and Fife quite comfortably. I did hear the Oracle himself - Professor Curtice - predict that Fife would be closest to the national average - ie if we win Fife, we'll probably win.

  87. Id love to see a graph of the flucations between each poll for each region. Glasgow can go from 555% Yes one week, to 60% No the week later!

  88. I did mean, of course, 55% Yes, but Id take 555% as well :-)

  89. By Tomorrow at this time people will have started voting!

    Today a lot of people who have still not decided still don't have enough information, so will sit down and consider the overall picture, so what is the overall picture?

    The NO campaign know this, so have tried to convince Scots that since they aren't sure they should just vote No!

    This is basically the patronising BT lady's message and won't wash with Scots in the same way that the advert didn't wash,

    So how will the DK's vote, or what will be the overall picture or emotion they will have of the campaigns and what one will they feel they want to see come to fruition?

    A lot of Happy Scots have been on the streets giving out information and seeming to be positive about the nation of Scotland, the message being we are a wealthy country and we want to make our own decisions.

    The No campaign funded by wealthy Tories from London and fronted by people who although they try to deny it, are trying to scare Scots by telling us we are to wee to poor and too stupid to deal with the big problems that the modern world brings and need England to tell us how to do this.

    And some people are still not sure how the majority of these DK's will vote!

    The reason the NO campaign believe they are ahead is because they are getting this information from a small band of English kids who are paid £25 a day to canvas affluent areas in Scotland.

    The reason the Yes campaign believe they are ahead is because they have Scots in every single part of the country including the most deprived.

    What canvas returns are likely to be more accurate?

    Hold firm folks, we are nearly there!

  90. Why has my comment not been posted there was nothing rude or swearing in it I am getting fed up with this.

  91. On the subject of Rentoul, he's seeing data at third hand, and we don't even know if that was national or regional returns. We also have the dubious evidence of Murdoch who tweeted Yes internal polling at 54% (which I assume is the canvassing) - which would've been aorund tuesday after the 51% YG poll, so it seems incomprehenisble for both to be correct. There is no way to go from 54% up to 'further behind' than the scientific polls two days later. That's like a ten point swing.

  92. Paul : I haven't deleted any comments, and as far as I can see none of your comments have been caught by the spam trap. If you've tried to post and failed, it must be a technical issue.

  93. Anonymous at 10.43

    This shy no thing is wierd.

    Totally agree that no voters just assume everyone else is a no (we're not) and are content to make sneering comments about Alex Salmond etc. This is usually at work/meetings.

    In the pub most folk are yes, you'd think no voters would be wise to keep their gobs shut but they don't anyway, they boast about being on the winning team.

    This is the advantage that dodgy polling has given the no campaign.

    Although I'm not sure that a few no voters boasting about winning in a pub full of yes voters is actually an advantage to be honest.

    But on facebook I only have 8 no friends as opposed to 39 yessers. A huge gap. I have over 20 friends with yes twibbons and ONE with a no twibbon.

    Either there is a big shy no on social media or yes is getting a landslide.

    I suppose another explanation is the social media types have had their eyes opened, the no voters maybe don't use social media.

  94. The shyness works both ways in my experience, that's just Scottish politics.

    We will get more undecideds than they do due to the message of our campaign though.

    We already are. Another one chalked (no pun intended) just in the past minute.

  95. My Facebook feed too appears to be overwhelmingly Yes. Maybe that's just my demographic (I'm 35 years old).

    Nearly all my friends that I went to school with in Glenrothes are Yes.

    It just doesn't add up...

  96. We had BT canvassing in my uber middle class village last night for only the second time ever. From the living room I was keeping an eye on them whilst watching the build up to the Arsenal game. They didn't go to every house, they only went to some, and they never came to mine. Because I know the locals well it wasn't easy to spot their strategy, they were only knocking on the doors of the undecided. Last time they came to me I said I was YES so they didn't bother coming back. Similarly my neighbour who is NO didn't get a visit either.

    This has been BT's strategy for the whole referendum. Put the fear of God into the undecided's, lead the Labour sheeple along to the polls and get a NO vote.

    Re canvassing I have done this for YES and a friend of mine up in Aberdeenshire does it for BT and we have compared notes. Apart from some core Labour seats where MPs have had their activists out, the rival campaigns are NOT canvassing in the same areas, so there is no point basing things on these returns. It is not that the work isn't crucial, engaging with the 'missing million' is essential for YES success, it is just not going to predict the result.

    However on the YESMO scale if regular canvassing is done YES Scotland will have a good idea of how across the country the intentions of NO voters are changing, ie whether there is an overall move up the scale from say a hard NO at 2 to an undecided at 5 etc. That kind of data is fanrastic as is knowing who your YES vote is in key areas so you can use the manpower to get them all out tomorrow.

    So don't trust anyone predicting the result from canvas returns, but they will pick up momentum and my sense from YES is that it has been heading in our direction, hopefully enough to send us over the line.

    I agree with the comment above that Fife is the key bellwether

    Not expecting to be ahead in any polls today, though it would be nice if we were ahead in one, just for confidence purposes. I think we all need to accept we are the underdogs, but we are very close to achieving that remarkable comeback.

  97. I am a Scot that grew up in America and now live in England. The thought of "too wee, too poor, too stupid" rings through my mind.

    If NO wins, I can guarantee that Scotland will be viewed and maybe rightly too wee, too poor and too stupid, that can be bought off with carnival trinkets.

    There are some in America that think of Scotland in terms of Bravehart, that will be dashed if NO prevails.

    I wonder how many NO voters are voting believing they are too wee, too poor and too stupid?

    Standing on your own two feet is a blessing and a great gift.

    Sorry for the rant..

  98. No need to apologise, George. You are 100% spot on.

  99. Does anyone know the timetable this evening for poll results being announced ?

    Any being announced tomorrow whilst polls are open ?

    Are there any exist polls being done at all ?

  100. So the writer for the Scotsman has been told of private polling that says YES at 53-57% and NO at 55%.

    Someone is blowing smoke but who? Is it possible to test YES at 53% and reverse engineer what they may be thinking?

    There are now 4,285,323 registered voters in Scotland. That represents 300,000 brand new registered voters as part of GOTV.

    We know turnout was 63.8% in 2010 and 50.4% in 2011 with a roll of 3,985,323.

    We are not going to have 100% turnout but we are not going to get 50% turnout. Lets assume we have 80% turnout as the talking heads are saying that and its midway.

    80% turnout is 3,428,258 which is an increase from 2,542,636 in 2010. Guess what, there is the so called missing million!! We have found thee...........

    I am going to assume that everyone who voted in 2010 votes in 2014. That means we have 885,622 fresh voters who have never voted before or were chronic non voters.

    The pollsters are doing something right and telling us something, I have no doubt that a pollster is very accurate based on existing modelling. Thats why I think Kellner from Youguv has the heebeejeebies.

    For the benefit of the doubt, lets assume that the pollsters are accurate in that the split is in fact going to be 48/52 on the first 2,542,636 which I think is the pool they are correctly forcasting. If the vote goes that way, the question becomes what percentage of the missing million (885,622) does YES need to get in order to be at 53% which is the lower number of the YES internal forcast.

    The answer is that YES would need to get 67% of the missing million (885,622) in order to have 53% of the total vote.

    But what percentage of the missing million (885,633) do they need to get just to get 50% plus one vote? The need 60% of the missing million.

    Is that doable? At a glance it appears so but do I have any way of checking.

    RIC did a canvas in August amongst the working class non-prior voters. I believe this was a followup to a voter registration drive. They are indicating the 18,000 plus canvas was at 63.4%.

    So I think I have reverse engineered the YES Campaign logic and it appears very doable.

    As I said, I cut my teeth on US Campaigns and there is great similiarity to Democrat efforts amongst the formerly disenfranchised.

    IF on Thursday there is an active effort amongst YES to check off who voted and physically get your voters to the polls then YES will win.

    Again, someone is blowing smoke and me thinks its the tory toffs from London that are blowing. If locals are running the groundgame for YES, then get the vote out to YES.

    In 2012 in the USA, Romney (Republican) in the end was blowing smoke as his ground game was built by fancy high paid consultants not local street smart people that Obama used.

  101. Some more thoughts on the missing million (885,633).

    The NO campaign is assuming that the missing million will vote in the same manner as the politically in tuned 2,542,636 that voted in 2010.

    What is a NO vote, especially amongst the missing million?

    a. A person may look in the mirror and simply say too wee, too poor, too stupid.

    b. A Political person that simply never got around to registering or voting.

    c. Someone with a touch of anarchy, libertarian or dare say liberty in the veins who can see this as the SINGLE opportunity to kick the political elite masters right in the ass and just maybe change things.

    It is absured to assume option B.

    Option A, the person would stay a non voter.

    I have to think Option C is the likely choice which I will call the RIC voter.

    NO would have to believe that the sleeping giant non-voter was suddenly awakened in Scotland to vote NO to keep the status quo.