Archive for the ' General Election' Category

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TNS poll sees the SNP extend their lead from 10% to 16%

Thursday, February 26th, 2015

Time appears to be running out for SLAB and Jim Murphy to avoid a shellacking in May.

TNS’ second poll this year, brings them into line with all the others bar Panelbase who have substantial leads for the SNP.

For those expecting differential turnout in Scotland to have an effect in May, “A majority of voters (61%) say they are certain to vote in the election, including 74% of both those intending to vote Labour and those backing the SNP.”

Health and education top General Election issues in Scotland

Which are two issues already devolved to Scotland.

“68% said healthcare/the NHS was “very important” in their voting decision, while 50% cited education/schools. Both SNP and Labour voters regarded health as being very important issues, mentioned by 72% and 75% respectively. However, SNP voters were more likely to cite education as an important issue than Labour voters – 57% compared to 46%.

Other major issues for voters are employment/jobs (47%), pensions (43%), taxes (38%), housing (35%), economic management (32%) and energy costs (32%). Immigration and benefits, which are often cited as key issues in UK-wide polls, appear to be less significant in Scotland, both mentioned by 28%.”

The fieldwork saw 1,001 adults aged 18+ interviewed from the 30thJanuary to 22nd February 2015.

TSE

UPDATE – Survation poll naming candidates has Farage winning South Thanet



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A leading academic forecasting model gives Farage just a 2% chance in South Thanet – Betfair punters have it at 60%

Thursday, February 26th, 2015

It was Tim Montgomerie in today’s Times who alerted me to the forecast for Farage’s South Thanet that has been produced by the 2015 UK Parliamentary Election Forecast – a collaberation between dons at UEA, LSE and Durham. For anyone betting on single seats their site is a gem with percentage probabilities for each party in every single seat.

Except that some of the forecasts just don’t feel right given everything that we know. The Farage battle is a case in point.

    True the headline Ashcroft polling from December had UKIP 1% behind. But the purples were 5% before the reallocation of 2010 CON DKs

That was before Christmas and things have moved on – notably a decline in UKIP poll shares generally.

My view of the seat is as recorded in previous posts. I think Farage has got a battle on his hands and both Labour and the Tories will do everything to generate anti-UKIP tactical voting to their candidates. This is a very tight three way marginal.

My money’s on both the Tories and LAB because of the odds I got – but, realistically, this is a gamble that I won’t be too upset about if I lose.

Mike Smithson

For 11 years viewing politics from OUTSIDE the Westminster bubble




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The MPs second job issue could have salience

Wednesday, February 25th, 2015

Cameron’s right but it’s a hard sell

Ed Miliband, inevitably given what’s happened this week, made MPs outside interests his primary focus at PMQs. The Labour approach is to control second jobs and there is a vote tonight on the issue.

The question this far out from an election is whether this might resonate as we saw with the expenses saga ahead of 2009. For the Tories to be seen to be blocking it might not be good electoral politics.

On this I believe the Cameron approach is correct – MPs with outside interests do add to the overall quality of MPs and the house would be poorer if it was confined to career politicians. Judging by the polling I am in the minority.

No doubt Labour will try to keep this going and I expect a commitment to ban MPs second jobs in the Labour manifesto.

Mike Smithson

For 11 years viewing politics from OUTSIDE the Westminster bubble




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There’s no clear picture in England where 532 of the 650 Westminster seats are located

Wednesday, February 25th, 2015

How many of the CON 2010 gains can be retained?

At the end of last year I started monitoring England only data from the main pollsters partly in response to the very different political environment that’s developed in Scotland.

All the phone pollsters are providing this in their regular datasets as well as Survation and Opinium. It would be great if YouGov and Populus could follow suit.

For if, as expected, LAB suffers major losses to the SNP in Scotland then it will have to offset them elsewhere if it is to have any chance of coming out top on seats. It does have a handful of targets in Wales but the big battleground is England where it lost 90+ seats at GE2010.

For the Tories the main objective is to hang on to as many of those 2010 gains and hope to pick up seats from elsewhere particularly Lib Dem ones in England.

So England is crucial but so far at least the polling is not providing us with anything like a clear picture. The chart shows the range – from the blues being 6% behind in England to them being 4% ahead.

The big figure to bear in mind is the 11.4% vote margin that the Tories had in 2010. They are sone way from replicating that performance.

Mike Smithson

For 11 years viewing politics from OUTSIDE the Westminster bubble




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Tonight’s cartoon from Marf (on Sir Malcolm of course) and the evening polling thread

Tuesday, February 24th, 2015

Two polls due this evening. Survation for the Mirror and the usual YouGov. They’ll be posted here as soon as they are out.

Last month Survation had CON 31, LAB 30, LD 7, UKIP 23, GRN 3. Last YpouGov had CON & LAB tied.

UPDATE LAB moves from 1% behind to 6% ahead in tonight’s Survation/Mirror poll


Thee was a slightly smaller lead, check the third box on the chart, when sample was asked “The General Election is on 7 May 2015. Thinking specifically about your constituency and the parties and candidates likely to be in contention, how do you think you will vote on 7 May”

Whatever a really good poll for LAB from one of the pollsters that last month had the Tories ahead

UPDATE 2 CON 2% ahead in latest YouGov poll

Mike Smithson

For 11 years viewing politics from OUTSIDE the Westminster bubble



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Turnout’s going to be higher surely on May 7th – but how much higher?

Tuesday, February 24th, 2015

SPIN opens its GE15 turnout market with 70% the mid-point

Sporting Index, which is sponsoring PB’s GE15 coverage, has put up a range of new spread markets including one on the turnout level. The opening spread is 69.7% – 70.3% making a mid-point of 70%.

If you think that it is going to be higher then you bet on 70.3% and for every percentage point above that level you will receive your initial stake level. So if it was 73.3% and you had bet £50 then you’d win 50 times 3 = £150. If, however, it was 66.3% then you’d be out by a gap of 4 so you would lose four times £50 £200.

With spread bets the more you are right the more you win. Alas it works the opposite if you’ve got it wrong

On this market my sense at the moment is that the opening range is on the high side and that it will be sub-70%. There is a tendency to regard every forthcoming general election as “the most important ever” perhaps over-stating how many voters will actually bother to record their choice.

We saw a big uplift in 2010 but I don’t expect a similar jump this time although I think it will be higher.

One technical factor that might help a higher level is the cleansing of the electoral rolls that has been taking place.

Mike Smithson

For 11 years viewing politics from OUTSIDE the Westminster bubble




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Anybody thinking of betting on the Greens ought to listen first to this interview with the party leader

Tuesday, February 24th, 2015



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Betting that Farage won’t do it in Thanet South is starting to look like a good proposition

Tuesday, February 24th, 2015

If the edge is coming off the purples Farage might fail

I’ve just caught up with the excellent BBC2 programme that was screened on Sunday night – “Meet the Ukippers” which focuses on Thanet South where Nigel Farage is the party’s candidate. It’s really worth watching and gives a great flavour of the battle that is going on.

The big news story from the programme was the expulsion from the party of a local UKIP councillor for some comments she made about black people. For me, however, the most revealing aspects was the high level of hostility that the UKIP/Farage campaign is attracting.

If ever there was a contest that looked set for tactical voting it is this one. The question is which of Farage’s main opponents stands the beat chance? The Tory candidate is a former UKIP leader which might count against him.

Looking at the polling the really remarkable feature is how close LAB was rated there in the earlier surveys which makes the 11/1 on the party a very attractive bet.

I’m already on both the Tory candidate at 9/2 and 6/1 on LAB and have now taken some more on the red team at what seem to be great odds.

The well funded Al Murray campaign might not attract voters to the Oxford-educated comedian but it stokes up the pot and has the potential to hurt Farage.

Mike Smithson

For 11 years viewing politics from OUTSIDE the Westminster bubble