Tuesday, November 29, 2022

More polling evidence that Europe could be Keir Starmer's Achilles Heel when facing the SNP in a general election functioning as a de facto independence referendum

My ears pricked up a couple of nights ago when I heard there was a new YouGov poll of GB-wide voting intentions out, because YouGov appear to structure and weight their Scottish subsamples correctly, and I thought it might be the first proper straw in the wind (leaving aside the Find Out Now poll) about how the fallout from the Supreme Court's ruling is affecting Scottish voting intentions.  Frustratingly, though, it turned out that the fieldwork was conducted on 22nd and 23rd of November, which almost certainly means the bulk of responses were taken before anyone knew about the legal bombshell that the UK is not a voluntary union.  However, the results are still of some interest -

Scottish subsample (YouGov, 22nd-23rd November 2022):  SNP 42%, Labour 32%, Conservatives 16%, Greens 4%, Reform UK 4%, Liberal Democrats 2%

Obviously a 10-point gap between SNP and Labour is a lot narrower than we'd feel comfortable with.  However, it can be regarded as not too bad in the context of an ongoing mammoth Britain-wide lead for Labour - a party that of course tended to do better in Scotland than elsewhere in Britain until very, very recently.  It leaves open the possibility that the SNP lead might grow again if Labour start to slip back down south.  And with a combined SNP / Green vote of 46%, a pro-indy majority in the popular vote at a plebiscite election remains within touching distance - although nobody should be under any illusions about what a tall order that will be in the 'away fixture' of a Westminster vote.  (To repeat the obvious yet again, the SNP really should be looking at an early Holyrood election instead.)

I gather Kezia Dugdale has a column in The Times arguing that Keir Starmer is a "major threat to a reanimated Yes campaign", which has "a Labour problem".  Well, a supplementary question from the YouGov poll points to the case for the defence, because it identifies one very obvious reason for suspecting Keir Starmer has both a "Yes problem" and a "Europe problem".  Respondents were asked if they would support a Swiss-style deal between the UK and the EU, restoring freedom of movement, removing trade barriers, and reinstating many EU rules and regulations.  A remarkable 54% of respondents across Britain were in favour, with only 24% opposed.  Predictably the gap is even bigger among the Scottish subsample, with 56% in favour and only 18% opposed.  

Keir Starmer has in recent days made clear that he opposes freedom of movement and therefore a Swiss-style deal will be ruled out under any Labour government.  That means the SNP are much, much closer to the centre of gravity among Scottish public opinion on Europe than Labour are, which could be a secret weapon for them in marginal SNP-Labour seats at a general election used as a de facto independence referendum.  Remember that Starmer has the excuse in England that he's just upholding the 2016 referendum result - he has no such alibi in Scotland, where voters opted to remain in the EU by the huge margin of 62% to 38%.

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  1. I see there is a council by election in Broxburn W Lothian on Thursday.

  2. I have heard charlieboy say the claim of right as he vowed to uphold it in his ceremony to get his mothers old job. Never heard Sturgeon say those words but she does bow down before charlieboy really well and so low she could easily lick his shoes. She must have practiced it a lot at home. Anyway what to do with Sturgeon and her blanking of Scots law. She does claim to be a Solicitor in the Scottish legal system but that didn't end well.

  3. There is a possibility that Starmer was lying(a politician? Never!) recently for tactical reasons - to stop the Tories from moving too far in that direction and to fuel their internal infighting.

    If don't knows are excluded from those figures, it's around 70-30%! If those trends continue, Starmer can modify his position later to include freedom of movement or even applying to rejoining fully when the Labour election manifesto is written and the UK electorate won't punish him for it. They'll give him a mandate.

    1. No chance. He's terrified of losing Leave voters in the former Red Wall seats.

  4. A WGD numpty posts that the votes of EU citizens and 16/17 year olds don't matter they are only about 350,000 the numpty says. Just how many people does this numpty thinks votes in Scotland. Casually just throwing away thousands of yes votes because well Sturgeon and her WGD mouthpiece tells them. Also what happened to the civic nationalism so long promoted by Sturgeon and her WGD mouthpiece that everyone who lives in Scotland gets a vote. English no voting students only in the country a few months can vote no but EU nationals living here for 30 years get no vote. If Sturgeon told these numpties the grass is black they would go along with it. We are on the road to nowhere with Sturgeon and her gang.

    1. Could potentially be a lot more than just the near quarter of a million EU nationals. There is also the non-EU nationals living in Scotland that aren't UK citizens. In 2020 there were 0.41m non UK citizens in Scotland of which 0.23m were EU nationals. I'm guessing some of these other foreign nationals aren't UK citizens and I'm also guessing they are not Brexit supporters in general and may well also lean towards independence or at a minimum are a useful target group. Source: https://www.nrscotland.gov.uk/files/statistics/population-estimates/pop-cob-nat-19-20/pop-cob-nat-19-20-report.pdf

    2. Of course a reduced turnout could give the undemocratic Britnats a sound bite thats says - more people voted no in 2014 than your yes vote in 2024.

  5. A St Andrews Day Declaration.

    "We the people, elected members and civic organisations of Scotland assert that our nation has the right of self- determination to freely determine our political status and to freely pursue our economic, social and cultural development. Mindful of the Scottish tradition of the sovereignty of the people we will democratically challenge any authority or government which seeks to deny us that right."

    I would as a Scottish citizen add to that the following comments:-

    stuff your English law, English legal system court verdict and stuff all those cowardly SNP appeasers who just accept this verdict and are now happy to sing along with Sturgeon for another two years Rule Britannia. That should be the Surrendering National Party's new theme song. Stronger for Scotland - what a joke - stronger than what - marshmallow. Next time Sturgeons speaks to the media Rule Britannia should replace Stronger for Scotland on her podium.

    The Declaration above is by the Alba Party. The sovereignty of Scots is not a tradition it is a legal right but at least Alba have something to say today.

  6. The SNP need to s*** or get off the pan. Because this has turned into a s***show situation. Snp should make way for a party that knows its s***. Because when Alba get on the pot they're going to take a big fat s*** in that pan and declare independence.

  7. The SNP were weak at PMQs today. Maybe keeping their powder dry but I feel Scotland deserved better following the SC verdict.

    Why has no Scottish constitutional convention been established? Why are they asking boring, mealy mouthed questions in Westminster instead of challenging the cosy status quo. Are they simply waiting til January as people are too busy with Christmas and it provides a new start?

    Unless a constitutional convention, a starting gun of a Yes united is planned for Burn's night, we are done in my view. They've lost the tactical nous of keeping Scotland on the agenda. Remember Moore getting a text about the date of the referendum whilst in the Commons? This type of play seems long gone.

    I would say the 2 years gives the movement the time it needs to heal it desperately needs. But all sides need a focus of a Yes banner to unite behind... a la the non-party Declaration of Yes Scotland. I honestly believe a defacto referendum without the positive energy of a united, non partisan campaign would be an utter disaster. The whole UK state is against us, we need a united campaign. We don't have it right now, we may have it in 2 years time but the work needs to start now.

  8. The missing £600k.

    The Herald reporting that the polis are still investigating this ring fenced fund that evolved in to a weaved in the accounts fund. The polis started this investigation last summer. The Surrendering National Party is hardly some multi national business. So how the hell can it take so long? Complete and utter disgrace by the SNP and the polis.
    I don't remember the SNP saying in 2016/7 the fund was for a UK GE de facto referendum in 2024.
    A classic case of obtaining monies under false pretences.
    A classic case of obtaining votes under false pretences.

  9. Voter ID UK GE

    " .. changes on voter ID, for example, young persons bus passes, young persons rail passes not accepted for voter ID but old persons bus passes and rail cards from the same operator accepted for voter ID. There is clearly a policy in the Conservative party to undermine young people and then to disenfranchise young people......."

    Labour MP on politics live today. The Tories gerrymandering again to reduce young people voting. So no 16/17 year olds in Sturgeons de facto referendum and lots of other youngsters turned away. You would think the Surrendering National Party do not want to get a > 50% vote.

  10. A new poll Yes 49 No 45 DK 5 https://twitter.com/RedfieldWilton/status/1597999017367343104

  11. More WGD numpty nonsense. ' Jumpin' Jack Collatin initialy thinks a Holyrood de facto is the best option but after the big dug say UK OK he then gives up and says UK OK as well. But being a numpty he doesnt seem to be paying attention and says:- " We play them at their own FPTP game. If Scotland returns a majority of pro independence MPs this time, we have the right, and even Margaret Thatcher ceded the point, to declare independence, and begin the process of dissolving the Union. "
    Jumpin Jack disnae seem to realise that is not what his beloved leader Sturgeon is saying. It's a majority of votes Jack.