Archive for the 'Coalition' Category


Why Cameron and his team are targeting parents with children

Monday, April 25th, 2016

The polling that shows that looking after kids more likely to be for IN

Datawrapper    tHA5r    Visualize

The more we learn about the Tory campaign at GE2015 the more we realise that micro-targeting specific demographic group on Facebook played a big part and looks set to be ever more significant in future election. You tailor a special message to those who fit the criteria and don’t waste money on those who don’t.

The polling above TNS highlights clearly the differing views of parents with kids at home and those who don’t. What IN needs is for them to actually turnout.

No doubt OUT is doing the same about other sub-groups.

Mike Smithson


Cameron’s Ipsos-MORI ratings continue to decline while Corbyn’s improve

Monday, April 25th, 2016


We are now at Peak Bern

Monday, April 11th, 2016


Hillary should finally start to gather momentum after Bernie’s last boost

It’s a measure of how weak a candidate Hillary Clinton is that not only has she failed to swat away Bernie Sanders’ challenge for the nomination but three-fifths of the way through she’s still conceding ground to the septuagenarian socialist.

Normally, by this stage in the race, one candidate is dominant and the money and coverage will have dried up for the rest. Instead, Sanders has won seven of the last eight contests and has closed the gap in the national polls to just 2.5% according to the Huffington Post average. Of course, the national average doesn’t count for all that much – those delegates already assigned from earlier contests are hardwired into the election (give or take state conventions and the like), and the rest will depend on the opinion in the states to come.

And on that point, there’ve been three clear trends. Sanders wins caucuses and where the electorate is white and rural; Clinton wins primaries and where the electorate has large black and urban elements. Of those last eight, only Wisconsin (a primary) went even slightly against those trends.

But Sanders should now have reached his zenith. For all that he has the momentum with him in the national polls, Clinton still remains ahead (just). More pertinently, the 600+ delegates available later this month all come in closed or semi-closed primaries and mostly in states that should lean to Hillary.

Assuming that she can make good there, that will reverse the media narrative. Bernie’s fightback will be over and political reality will reassert itself: Hillary’s modest lead in elected delegates and overwhelming lead in superdelegates becomes ever more impregnable with each state win. Actually, her lead’s been sufficient to assure her of the nomination for a month or so (barring accidents), but that fact has jarred when set against Sanders’ good run so hasn’t been given much attention. New York and the April 26 contests give her the very strong chance to bring her dominant position into alignment with current events. Sanders will no doubt fight on – perhaps all the way to the convention – but it’ll be seen to be increasingly futile.

The journey’s been an arduous one for Clinton, far more so than it should have been, but she’s finally crested the pass of Peak Bern and barring accidents will splutter on to the nomination.

David Herdson


Philip Hammond: worth backing at 28/1

Friday, April 8th, 2016


Another grey man might be just the thing to pick up the pieces

If asked for a role model, few aspiring politicians would opt for John Major. Unfashionable, uncharismatic, comprehensively battered at the 1997 election: why would they? Yet the travails of the 1992-7 parliament culminating in that electoral apocalypse overshadow what he achieved in his first 18 months: reuniting a party riven by Europe and re-establishing the Conservatives as economically competent, ideologically pragmatic and on the side of ordinary people. Plus ça change.

Fast forward to the present and to the statement that Major’s successor-but-three as Conservative leader gave, that he will not resign whatever the outcome of the referendum this June. That might or might not be Cameron’s intent (he could hardly say any different without risking Remain’s chances, for fear of giving Tory opponents an incentive to vote Leave), but even if it is, the matter doesn’t lie entirely within his control.

That’s not to say that the one will necessarily follow the other but there’s a strong chance it would. So suppose Cameron does fall this summer. The new leader will almost certainly be either Boris or one of the current cabinet. Unlike in Labour, Conservative members (never mind ‘supporters’) will not get the chance to vote for mavericks that the MPs don’t support. So who would they get the chance to vote for?

Precedent is not everything but it can often be a very good guide and there are two worth considering here. Firstly, every midterm change of PM since WWII has seen either the Chancellor or the Foreign Secretary take the top job. Secondly, Conservative leaders are invariably chosen as much for who and what they are not as for what they are – in other words, a candidate without strong negatives starts at a considerable advantage.

That first point can be overstated. We certainly shouldn’t rule out Boris or May or Gove (for example) just because of their current job. There’ve only been six midterm changes of PM since 1945 and in most of them there were serious candidates who held neither springboard Great Office.

But the second point is one to take very seriously. Almost every current leading candidate to take over from Cameron has at least one big question mark hanging over them, whether that be political judgement, public popularity, experience, media ability or whatever.

By contrast, Philip Hammond doesn’t. True, as Foreign Secretary, he cannot entirely disassociate himself from Cameron’s referendum. If there is a leadership change this summer then it follows that Conservative voters, never mind members, will have rejected the deal on offer and so he’d find himself on the wrong side of that divide. However, he’s kept a remarkably low profile in the campaign so far and the negotiations themselves were very much Cameron’s baby. Hammond may have done some bag-carrying but he’s not deeply complicit. In fact, if there were a withdrawal to negotiate, a former Foreign Secretary might be a good person to lead it.

Indeed, a safe pair of hands might well be seen by the Conservatives as the ideal contrast to Labour’s unorthodox choice as leader.

The question is whether Hammond could secure the support of enough MPs in the first phase to make it onto the ballot paper. After the recent dimming of the stars of Osborne, Boris and Javid, there has to be a realistic chance; none of his potential opponents appears to be the beneficiary of any groundswell of support.

It may well of course be that there isn’t a leadership election this year. Cameron may comfortably win his referendum, or he may survive a different result anyway. All the same, the 28/1 available for him represents good odds that are only realistically explicable by his lack of visibility. On any other consideration, he’d be given a much better chance.

David Herdson


New Ipsos Referendum phone poll has the REMAIN lead down to 8%

Tuesday, March 29th, 2016

The pollster has changed its methodology which I will write about later


REMAIN lead drops to lowest level yet in ComRes phone poll for ITV

Wednesday, March 23rd, 2016

Why we should stay in Europe according to Alan Johnson  Labour    BBC News   YouTube

The ComRes press release states:

Remain” leads “Leave” by seven points according to the latest ComRes poll for ITV News (fieldwork conducted over the weekend, before the events in Brussels). The seven point lead is the lowest recorded in a ComRes telephone poll since the General Election, however, it is in line with the eight point lead in the February ComRes / ITV News poll (although another ComRes poll for the Daily Mail had shown the Remain lead rising to 12 points after David Cameron had agreed the deal in Brussels).

In this new poll 48% back Remain, while 41% say they would vote for Leave if there was a referendum tomorrow. The lead widens when people’s relative likelihood to vote is taken into account: if turnout patterns between different demographic groups at the referendum reflect those at last year’s General Election, there would be a 14 point lead for remaining in the EU.

The poll also finds that David Cameron is the most important politician in deciding how people will vote at the referendum. One in three (34%) Britons say the Prime Minister will be important in deciding how they vote. Boris Johnson is named by 29% while one in four (24%) say Jeremy Corbyn will be important to them…


YouGov London Mayoral poll has Sadiq with 7% lead

Monday, March 14th, 2016

This latest poll follows the Opinium survey for the Evening Standard last week that had Khan with a 5% lead on first preferences which rose to a 10% margin over Zac when second preferences were allocated.

Both YouGov and Opinium are online and at 2012 both had the top two most accurate surveys.

This looks like reasonably good news for Zac and for those PBers who are holding vouchers at 33/1 on him winning.

The PB London Mayoral Competition post will be re-published later.

1615 UPDATE: LAB level with CON in latest ICM Phone poll

Mike Smithson


Another big night of WH2016 primaries

Wednesday, March 9th, 2016