Friday, May 1, 2020

Unionist journalists learn the hard way that wishful thinking doesn't get the job done, as sensational YouGov poll shows the SNP on course for an overall majority in the Scottish Parliament

Scottish Parliament constituency ballot:

SNP 54% (+8)
Conservatives 23% (-3)
Labour 12% (-2)
Liberal Democrats 8% (-3)
Greens 2% (+1)

Scottish Parliament regional list ballot:

SNP 45% (+8)
Conservatives 23% (-2)
Labour 12% (-2)
Greens 8% (n/c)
Liberal Democrats 7% (-3)

Scottish voting intentions for next UK general election:

SNP 51% 
Conservatives 25% 
Labour 15% 
Liberal Democrats 6% 
Greens 2%

In YouGov's first Scottish subsample after Keir Starmer became Labour leader, there seemed to be some tentative signs that the SNP were taking a small hit as a result of Labour's move back towards the centre.  I'm not sure whether that was merely a transitory Starmer bounce or whether it was an illusion caused by the small sample size, but either way it most certainly has not been replicated in YouGov's first full-scale Scottish poll since Starmer's election, and indeed since the coronavirus crisis started.  Labour are in every bit as dire a position as they were under Corbyn, and it's the SNP that are surging forward.

Why is this happening?  It's easy to assume that it must be a 'rally round the flag' effect caused by Nicola Sturgeon coming into her own as a 'war leader' during the pandemic, but in fact these figures are broadly in line with Survation and Panelbase polls (the latter commissioned by this blog) at the start of the year when it wasn't known there was going to be a coronavirus outbreak on these shores.  So it's difficult to unpick how much of this is an ongoing honeymoon effect caused by the SNP's landslide victory in December's general election, and how much of it can be explained by the unique situation we now find ourselves in.

What might give us more of a clue would be figures on independence, but there's no information yet on whether this poll contained an independence question.  A Panelbase poll in late March, when the epidemic was still in its relatively early stages, suggested that support for independence had slipped back (not dramatically, but a little) even as the SNP had gained further support.  If that trend has continued, it might suggest that the SNP are prospering due to Ms Sturgeon's steady leadership during the crisis, and that the effect is not directly linked to views on the constitutional issue.

Even if YouGov didn't ask the independence question, it's possible there may be an independence poll very soon.  To use the dread Laura Kuenssberg phrase, "I'm hearing that" a Panelbase poll is in the field, asking about independence, Holyrood voting intentions, the Alex Salmond trial, and the handling of the coronavirus crisis.  It remains to be seen whether it's a private poll or one intended for publication.  Panelbase's two most frequent clients for published Scottish polls are the Sunday Times and Wings Over Scotland, and the questions don't sound very Wings-like, so if the poll does see the light of day it'll probably be in the Sunday Times either this weekend or next.

Bear in mind that, although YouGov conducted a couple of other Scottish polls earlier this year, this is the first time they've asked for Holyrood voting intentions since the general election.  So that means the eight-point increase in SNP support may be partly artificial, due to the post-election revision in methodology.  However, the SNP's estimated vote share for Westminster is 6% higher than they actually achieved in December, which suggests there has been genuine and substantial movement in public opinion.

It should be noted that the SNP having an outright majority of the popular vote essentially destroys the specific case that was made last year in favour of a new pro-independence party to stand only on the list.  The claim was that the SNP would be bound to take a hammering due to fallout from the Alex Salmond trial, and that they would therefore need 'help' to retain the pro-indy majority at Holyrood.  That appears to have been proved definitively wrong.  The arguments for 'gaming the system' do tend to conveniently mutate when circumstances change, so I wouldn't be totally surprised if we still haven't heard the end of the idea.  However, I remain firmly of the view that a new party would have almost no chance of winning seats unless it's fronted by a very high-profile and popular person.  A Salmond-led party might well enjoy success, but I do have a concern that in the long run it might further entrench the 'cultural' divide in the Yes movement.  I still have hopes that Alex Salmond may return to the SNP and fight from within for a stronger push towards independence, but time will tell.

97 comments:

  1. *jaw drops* 54? That is truly amazing.

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    1. It is called Temporomandibular Disorder.

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    2. 2014 ...so long ago nostalgic for the unionists I feel for them , they’re hurting big time because unlike us in 2014 they know there’s no return for them , it’s the end of the road for them , I suppose they will still have their orange order marches.

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    3. Not this summer they won't. Physical distancing is great.

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  2. I'd imagine Jackson Carlaw's bitter, angry hatred goes down well with a minority of hardcore unionists, but is a turn-off for pretty much everyone else.

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    1. We are not a minority. Remember 2014 we gubbed you big style.

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    2. 2014 was over half a decade ago. You are living on past glories GWC.

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    3. We were heading for the EU referendum and the EU crawling like snakes Nat sis were gubbed again. 2 nuffin so far.

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    4. 1688 Skier that was Glorious.

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    5. There were many people in 2014 who were sympathetic to the independence cause but when it came down to it didn't want to take the risk and so voted No. Carlaw running about saying there is no Scotland-England border will sound like an idiot to them.

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    6. The poor old Britnats living in the past. "We won in 2014." Yes, and the Tories won in 1955. The Whigs won in 1822.
      Nostalgia, aw... Bless them

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  3. This will come as a disappointment to the Scottish Nat si. BBC Radio One will replay the Churchill speech of 8 May 1945, 1445 hrs to announce the defeat of the Nazis.

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    1. Not disappointed , Churchill’s grandson being dumped , cheered me up.
      1945 ? Nearly a hundred years ago who cares who’s interested , nobody but the losers huddling under the Union Jack

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    2. That'll be lovely for you. Living in the past. Maybe you could develop rickets for that Great British nostalgia feel.

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    3. Covidia's looking forward to rationing coming back. That it'll come back because the idle creature and its fellow Brexiteers will leave crops to rot in the fields, rather than do an honest day's work, is irrelevant. Covidia loves its fake WWII nostalgia.

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    4. Ah know, does that include Archibald Maule Ramsay, Scottish Unionist MP interned for the duration of the war, Hitlers man in Scotland?

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  4. Interestingly, seat predictors see Jardine and 'Union' Jack as losers. So Libdems and Tories have to rearrange their deckchairs. Again.

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    1. Where are you getting that from Ron? - I usually use the Weber Shandwick predictor but it seems to be gone now.

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  5. Will Swinson risk it?

    One humiliating defeat is unfortunate, but two might be considered careless...

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    1. Yes please. I miss her dipping in and out of random accents with no discernible pattern.

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  6. I'm sure Butcher Bozo's plans for a hard brexit in the middle of the covid pandemic will strengthen the union.

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    1. We know the beginning but not the middle or the end.

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    2. ...It is in truth not for glory, nor riches, nor honours that we are fighting, but for freedom – for that alone, which no honest man gives up but with life itself.

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    3. Beautiful. Woz it Brian Cox wot said that? Lol.

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    4. True genius resides in the capacity for the evaluation of uncertain, hazardous, and conflicting information.

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    5. Well, you most surely lack that GWC.

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    6. GWC has the capacity for ingesting hazardous substances.

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    7. Covidia sticks to turps so that its beloved Tory overlords don't go without.

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  7. Nicola Sturgeon reworks the martial of fighting without fighting or in her case campaigning without campaigning

    Genius! just Genius!

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    1. With her face mask on and miles from a hospital or old folks home. It is the NHS staff and back up people who have to be commended.

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    2. You're sounding a bit desperate, GWC. Why is that?

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    3. Idolising politicians is unhealthy for any nation.

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    4. Covidia is discovering that obedience will not protect it from being thrown under the Boris bus.

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  8. Anyone notice in the YouGov tables that the SNP appear to have won back a chunk of the Yes Leaver votes from the Tories while holding onto to the No Remainer cohort ?

    If we can keep everyone on board I think 60% yes is a lot more likely than I ever thought

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  9. Am I right in thinking that's the highest Yougov have ever had the SNP for holyrood?

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  10. Nicola has handled the crisis so far massively better than the nincompoop sociopaths at w/minster.

    We have zoom conversations with most inlaws weekly. They all live in various parts of England, are of a wide spread of ages, and every one of them thinks that the Sccottish government is doing better than Bozo's clowns.

    It seems very appropriate to me that defence of the union on this blog is down to one, racist, religious sectarian nitwit. Can't wait for the day when all the YES stalls are out again and we can start to move into the end game.

    To coin a phrase, "Push ! Push ! They fail !"

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    1. What is it that she has done which inspires such devoted ares licking?

      Not closing schools until she was allowed to by england?

      Not shutting down concerts, football, large gatherings until england said she could?

      Failing to provide adequate PPE to hospital staff?

      Failing to test, trace, quarantine?

      Failing to close the border and allowing thousands of diseased londoners to spread their plaque?

      Telling outright lies every day about the law and what people are allowed to do?

      Receiving a pat on the head from gove for being such a loyal little soldier?

      Failing to stand up to the yoon media?

      Protecting SAS and LE?

      Forcing through the GRA reform and abolishing science in Scotland?

      New hate crimes legislation which will put every single person who doesn't accept TWAW in prison?


      Doing nothing and gaining majorities is exactly what labour did for decades. Remind us what good it did them?

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    2. 'You Scots are arse lickers' is a real vote winner.

      Note that Scotland locking down earlier would not made a blind bit of difference. The timing was perfect. Ireland gained nothing from its slightly earlier start. It's on an identical trajectory to Scotland, albeit a few days behind.

      Closing the border would have been a good idea though. If there was actually a law which allowed it.

      That's the other rule of vote winning. Don't make an erse out of yourself by showing everyone you are clueless.

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  11. I completed the said Panelbase poll and it included some quite weird and restricted questions on attitudes to transgender issues, so I think that actually lends support to the idea of it being private wings commissioned (or wings aligned)

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    1. Ah, maybe. The reason I assumed it wasn't Wings is that he seems to be quite sceptical about the value of conventional voting intention polling. Another possibility is that Panelbase are polling for two clients simultaneously (different questions for each).

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    2. Wings doesn't do Independence any more, he got fed up with that cause in favour of the GRA cause but that petered out and nobody in the YES movement wants anything to do with the guy because all he's interested in is self promotion and that hasn't worked out as well as he hoped once folk found him out so he's keeping his head down until his next attack on the SNP and Nicola Sturgeon, if he can work out how he's going to achieve that, take a look at his website it's a cesspit for loonies troll and idiots he's allowing to just write anything that comes into their heads as long as it's SNP bad

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    3. That was a very long sentence from a Nat si gabler. Good to see you inbreds are at each others throats.

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    4. Oh no, us SNP are not at each others throats, these people are your lot invited by a disenchanted blogger to bring the Independence movement into disrepute

      As far as indreds go Orange boy we know who those are

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    5. Covidia is a big fan of Duelling Banjos.

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  12. Seems a good theory, the wording was really weird... wish I had screenshotted now

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  13. Nothing to do with a "cultural" divide. It Is question of right and wrong. Criminal actions by unionists masquerading as independence supporters in the SNP and unionists in the civil service. Turning a blind eye to this is just not acceptable.

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  14. If any of you Nat sis listened to Dr David Nott on News Night tonight then you can forget about your petty cause. Estimates are the virus is about to hit around another billion people and millions will descend on Europe from the Middle East Camps. Dr Nott reckons there is a three week window before it starts. He says massive United world intervention is required immediately and David Milliband should lead the effort.

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    1. Well if England keeps bombing them out of their homes they're bound to go somewhere, so why not here because England and America buggered up their countries, just like they buggered up Scotland for oil money

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    2. Can the middle eastern migrants not work in the fields given brexit voters are welching on their promise to do that?

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  15. 54% Pinches self. Yup just not believable. But hey Tories riding at 50% in Engerland in other polls despite cold bloodedly murdering 25,000 or so of them. So anything is possible.

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    1. The English look at the facts. Scottish Nat sis dwell in the past when most of us had outside toilets and had knee tremblers up the back of the close.

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    2. Aye the great days when the Labour party working for the Tories kept Scotland so poor we only had outside toilets and lived up closes because they robbed Scotland of industry and removed it to England where their votes are because Scotlands votes don't count

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  16. Young James, when will you start a campaign to get all your Nat si flag wavers to march to the Scottish fields and bring in the crops for our people? Does patriotism not involve getting your nails dirty! Maybe a grant from Westminster will help.

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    1. I thought your Brexitomania was supposed to instantly populate the fields? Not workin' out as you thought, eh? So you resort to that well-known last refuge of the scoundrel.

      Not so much patriot as verbal fartalot...

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    2. I thought you middle class flag waving Jocks would walk five hundred miles in a great patriotic act for Scotland.

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    3. Awa and play yer banjo.

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    4. Scottish forced farm workers demand pies, brides and Greggs cheese and onion pasties. Most were shocked when encountering fruit and Veg.

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    5. Brexit voting scots are going to plug the gap in the feilds GWC, just as they promised.

      Unless you think they are not going to come good?

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    6. Covidia and its fellow Brexiteers are too damned lazy and entitled to pull their weight. It'll only happen when their Tory overlords threaten the pittance they have the cheek to call a state pension.

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  17. I've changed my mind about GWC. He is great ! We should give his comments the widest possible circulation. Every single one will give us a new YES voter. His childish poison kills his own cause. Perhaps "Covidia" really is his name ?

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    1. I don't know why GWC isn't commenting on Wings over Scotland, he'd fit right in

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    2. I was deleted for being an atheist.

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    3. Covidia should keep telling itself that. I suspect that the reason was entirely different.

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    4. What do you suspect and why?

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    5. Covidia should look to its own behaviours. It's not my job to do its thinking for it.
      Of course, it doesn't appear to be Covidia's job, either...

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  18. Yougov poll showed Sturgeon has confidence of 71% of Scots in handling of corona virus crisis and 84% of Liberal Democrats and 70% of both Conservative and Labour supporters are happy with the approach taken by the Scottish government. Just 19% said the virus was being handled badly.

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  19. This consensus falls apart when assessing the UK government’s performance. Scots are split, with 47% of those surveyed agreeing Conservative ministers have handled the outbreak well and 48% disagreeing. Boris Johnson himself has a net rating of -15.

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  20. Why on earth do people still think the snp are an independence party? They are devolutionists as they have shown repeatedly and are perfectly happy with the status quo. NS gives very plausible speeches re Covid, although she continues to toe the Johnson/cumming line, hence she is gaining the support of the non-thinking public. Sadly if she gets this new majority, the woke brigade and the devolutionists will have won - we wont get another chance of indy ever, as Johnson/cummings will have sewn Scotland too tightly into the union - with Sturgeon's blessing.

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  21. 54%?

    I will happily take that next year. Cue Carlaw demanding elections be postponed until better weather/(polls).

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  22. Big Eater From PerthMay 2, 2020 at 11:32 AM

    The Ch(i)ef's Saturday Special

    “Poor Pete! He just doesn’t get it. Maybe if he actually listened to some of the people who are “saying we’re finished or they’re leaving the party” he’d know that it has nothing to do with the SNP’s performance as an administration. As it is, he evidently hasn’t a clue why so many members are in despair at or angry with the party. More disturbingly, perhaps, he appears not to care. So long as the SNP is doing well in the polls, all is right with Pete’s wee world.
    More troubling still is the fact that this disdain for what is rapidly becoming the pro-independence wing of the nominally pro-independence party extends all the way to the top. The higher echelons of the party have come to define success as being ahead in the polls and/or winning elections. Progressing the cause of independence has ceased to be a measure of success. Those who continue to consider it the principle measure of success are now seen as an impediment to ‘real’ success of the kind that delights Pete Wishart...”

    Sorry, did I say Pete? Can easily alter that to the name of another apostle of SNPism.

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    1. "The higher echelons of the party have come to define success as being ahead in the polls and/or winning elections."

      Jings, crivens and help ma boab. Whit are they thinking!

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    2. SNP should aim for the 'success' of Labour, the Tories and the Libs in Scotland. That's real success. It's not about winning, it's the getting gubbed that really matters!

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    3. Big Eater spelt 'principal' wrongly. I will never again think of him as the heir to Pericles.

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  23. The poll above does not include any 16 and 17 year old's.

    https://docs.cdn.yougov.com/z1w895zzti/Internal_ScotVI_200428_V3_W.pdf

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  24. A general point, but this poll shows how little influence the mainstream media and 'influential' new media blogs have on the public's opinion.

    You can try to tell the public what to think, but that just annoys them. They don't like any sort of forced agenda. They will make their own minds up what they think about things.

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  25. As another general point, if Wings' goal is to set up a new party, he's doing it all wrong.

    You don't get elected by just constantly telling the electorate how shit the other parties are and how voters are stupid for voting for XYZ. A fixation with single personal bugbear issues will likewise get you nowhere, even if these are worthy of discussion.

    You win by offering your own distinct comprehensive alternative vision to be delivered by trusted figures.

    Certainly that's required if you are to come out of nowhere and make a big impact quickly.

    A wings party hasn't a hope in hell of getting anywhere on a 'Sturgeon is a females with penises loving Anti-Salmond bitch, so vote for us as we'll have indy done by next Tuesday, covid or not!'. That's just not an attractive, well thought-out manifesto which will bring in the voters.

    I say this as someone who is open to credible alternatives to the SNP going forward. I'm not blindly loyal to any party and if a new one came along that was more closely aligned to me, I'd consider it, taking into account how that might affect results etc. I'm intrigued to see what Salmond does next for example.

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  26. Far be it from me but to remind people that Alex Salmond lost and he lost big, because to allow tumshies like Alistair Darling and George Osborne to walk all over you due to your own unpreparedness, or was it? Did Alex Salmond do the deal in order to lose the referendum Scotland was winning

    Stuart Campbell and his Wings lunatics who'll fall for anything he says are totally deluded and Campbell has convinced them that trying to bring back a proven loser of a striker to play for the team just to do it all again is a bad and poorly thought out strategy and makes you wonder what their game is

    Because Independence it most certainly isn't

    Campbell likes causes until they don't interest him anymore because the cause isn't being done the way he thinks it should be so he turns on the party like the infant child he is and throws his toys out the pram in an *I hate my mum because she wont buy me sweeties* moment, then runs around inlisting the support of other aggrieved head cases in his latest cause, meanwhile everybody who counts for something in the Independence movement dumps him because he's a nutter

    This is a guy who abandoned his own website to let it fall into disrepute from trolls Unionists and just complete loonies so that it actually damages the Independence cause while telling people they need him to rescue it

    But it's all gone wrong because Nicola Sturgeon is more popular than ever and her numbers are higher than ever so Campbell skulks off into the bushes plotting her downfall along with his bampot one friend wondering how he can use Alex Salmond's name to boost his own career as a blogging troublemaker without Alex Salmonds permission, because if he had it, he'd be doing it

    Wings over Campbell is a chancer, nothing more nothing less, he'll just need to find another way to make a living, or invent a cause that works

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    1. Do you not think you are maybe just a little bit obsessed with Stuart Campbell?

      As you can see from the above polling, Wings doesn't appear to have much if any political influence. At least no more so than your average niche area political blog.

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    2. In all honesty the guy isn't worth paying much attention to. The reality is, his social media followers are inward looking. What Sturgeon is doing is having a conversation with everyone, not just the converted. And it is working. So Stuart Campbell can complain all he likes, it's making no difference.

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    3. Stuart Campbell is obsessed with destroying my party so if there's anything I can do to point that out I damn well will
      along with his bampot chum the Scottish David Icke

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  27. Just so I understand this...

    Scots are cretins for voting SNP, but you are asking these same 'cretins' to do your bidding and use their first / most important PR list vote for some sort of 'Wings' party?

    To be honest, this seems a very Scottish Labour / GWC approach to campaigning. They whole 'You lot are thick cretins, vote for me' thing that is.

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    1. Looks like the strategy by supporters of a "Wings Party" to convince SNP voters to lend them their list vote by insulting them might not have been thought through very well.

      Maybe there's a plan B?

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  28. Another Panelbase poll on the go.
    Usual political questions about voting intentions and Indy, but quite a few about trans issues.
    Methinks it is a Wings poll.

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    1. Do you think they'll go all the way?

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  29. I don't want to have to drink cocktails with Covidia again. She kept going on about poofs and darkies, and people looked on aghast as she peed herself. I was mortified when she shouted out "Oh god I think I've just started." The head of the lodge told us we were barred.

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    1. Annie W. I hear most of you Scottish woman are so bloated and ugly with bad breath the men give it to them doggy fashion.

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    2. Covidia shouldn't talk about itself like that.

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  30. So, in just the past few days, in attempt to persuade me to vote for a party other than the SNP (my choice in recent elections), I've been told I'm a 'thick, erse-licking cretin'.

    And the same folk wonder why the SNP are on 54%.

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    1. Brian NicholsonMay 2, 2020 at 8:32 PM

      thick erse-licking cretins ARISE!!

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    2. I bet you most of them were ex Labour who joined the SNP now they want to change Labour back to what they never were in the first place because the SNP aren't socialisty and quick enough for them, so down with the SNP

      It makes you realise the kind of people who gubbed the Labour party in the first place, they should just call themselves the destroyers of parties, or a bunch of A-holes who cannae make their minds up

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  31. Not really surprising. It's like a poll finding that Churchill, or Stalin was popular during WW2. Sturgeon is popular atm, Johnston is popular atm. No idea about Mark Drakeford - maybe Boris makes announcements in Wales atm and there is a big Tory surge.

    When politicians stand on podiums every day and regurgitate medical advice to nations they become pretend doctors in people's minds. The politicians who don't get to stand on the podiums atm are regarded as politicians.

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  32. Mark Drakeford was making a decent speech on Wales behalf the other day then ruined it by praising the strength of the Union at the end when Wales is having to import its own PPE because the supposed UK supply isn't enough

    What was the man thinking about praising them, the UK government F....d us all over PPE for the England first Donald Trump approach

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