Archive for the 'Pollsters/polling' Category


What I cannot understand given their age profile is the lack of concern by UKIP voters about pensions and health

Wednesday, July 23rd, 2014

The table above is the latest issues polling by YouGov broken down by concerns for the country and for responders own families.

Given that the age profile of kippers is tilted to the higher end of the range their views on the lack of importance of, say, education is understandable. But what about health and pensions?

The detail from the poll shows that the 60+ group have the highest concern levels about these areas yet the UKIP voters don’t seem to worry about them that much.

    Could it be that those oldies currently backing Farage’s party are in good health and are reasonably well off.

This aspect of UKIP concerns has been showing for a long time. Today’s poll is not a fluke and is in line with what we’ve seen over the past year or so.

This has political implications. Chancellor Osborne has made a big move on pensions and the signs are that the Tory offer on this will feature strongly at GE2015. But if kippers aren’t that interested will it make any difference?

Mike Smithson

2004-2014: The view from OUTSIDE the Westminster bubble


Lord Ashcroft’s latest round of marginals polling finds that UKIP is hurting LAB more than CON

Tuesday, July 22nd, 2014

UKIP in lead in two of the seats polled

But there is good news for Ed Miliband

Mike Smithson

2004-2014: The view from OUTSIDE the Westminster bubble


Polling UKIP: The recent record shows that YouGov got closest with ICM in second place

Tuesday, July 22nd, 2014

With so much variation in the UKIP share in recent polls it is perhaps worth recalling that the firm that got it most right the last time they were tested, the May 22nd Euros, was YouGov.

The figures are in the chart above and it is interesting that YouGov and ICM, the ones that did best on May 22nd, are continuing to show UKIP with smaller shares for the general election compared with other pollsters.

Later this morning Lord Ashcroft is publishing his latest CON-LAB marginals poll. This covers 14 CON held constituencies and has a sample of 14k.

Mike Smithson

2004-2014: The view from OUTSIDE the Westminster bubble


My anaylsis of 100+ polls shows that the 2010 LD voters who’ve switched to LAB are sticking and that’s bad news for the Tories

Monday, July 21st, 2014

Curtice is right: LD switchers aren’t going back “any time soon”

In a broad-ranging interview just published Britain’s leading political scientist, Professor John Curtice made these observations about Labour’s polling position and GE2015.

“..basically the reason why the Labour party is in the lead is because of the loss of Liberal Democrat support to Labour. It goes all the way back to 2010 and it’s not obvious that it’s going to go back anytime soon…

..I see no reason why the general election should result in a transfer of voters back from Labour to the Liberal Democrats unless there is a severe decline in Labour’s ability to offer anything. Because in a sense those Liberal Democrat voters that are going to Labour are primarily there because of push rather than pull..”

This has prompted me to look at the polling in more detail and to produce the trend chart above showing the monthly average in the twice-weekly Populus polls of 2010 LD voters now saying that they’ll vote Labour.

I chose Populus because there are at least 8 polls a month with an aggregate sample of more than 15k and it presents its data in a manner which makes this analysis easier. While YouGov polls show the proportion of LD>LAB switchers they exclude the don’t knows and refusers. I wanted to show the switchers as a proportion of all those who voted Lib Dem in 2010 including the large numbers of those who have still to make up their minds.

The Populus series started just over a year ago and there have been about 100 polls each of which has been analysed.

At GE2010 the Lib Dems secured just under 24% of the GB vote and a quarter of that represents a large slice of the electorate. Because of the importance of this to the general election outcome I plan to continue collecting data and producing regular reports right up to polling day.

Mike Smithson

2004-2014: The view from OUTSIDE the Westminster bubble


Lord Ashcroft’s latest round of CON-LAB marginals polling would be even more informative if the candidates were named

Sunday, July 20th, 2014

Are the blues getting a first time incumbency bonus?

I got into a good natured Twitter exchange last night with Lord Ashcroft about the seats that will be included in his next round of marginals polling due to be published in the next few days. In fact I needn’t have bothered because on the Saturday after the May 22nd local elections he said the following to a ConHome conference:

“This is the first in a series of similar surveys I will be conducting in the run-up to the election. In the next few weeks I will be publishing a poll of our battleground with the Lib Dems, and then Labour’s battleground with the Lib Dems. We will return regularly to each group of seats to track progress over the year.

So it’s pretty clear that the constituencies being polled will be the same as those in May.

Intriguingly Lord Ashcroft promised some surprises in his latest round and more, but no doubt, we’ll have to wait for publication before we know what those are.

One feature I really hope that Lord Ashcroft will incorporate is to name the candidates in each seat in the voting intention question. Many Tory hopes are being placed on first time incumbents in the key seats being defended doing better than national or regional swings and including their name could help measure this.

In almost all of the 14 seats the Labour and Conservative candidates are in place and it would not take much to incorporate their names.

In some of the seats Labour had taken the Broxtowe approach and chosen the ex-MP who lost in 2010 and it’s a moot point whether this will, in part, neutralise the effect.

I’ve no doubt that Lord Ashcroft is looking at his methodology with each new poll and I do hope that at some stage the named candidate approach will be incorporated.

Mike Smithson

2004-2014: The view from OUTSIDE the Westminster bubble


The Sunday Times YouGov findings on the reshuffle, Michael Gove, free schools, the “bedroom tax” and leaving the ECHR

Sunday, July 20th, 2014

Are the Tories still seen as the “nasty party?

The Gove move and his policies

The bedroom tax and the LDs

Support for leaving the ECHR on the decline


ComRes online and Opinium polls are out

Saturday, July 19th, 2014

Tonight’s polls are changes within the margin of error, though the Lib Dems will be delighted to be up by 2% in both polls.

Opinium for the Observer shows

The ComRes supplementaries make for interesting (if depressing) reading for Dave and Ed.

On the reshuffle doesn’t make for good reading for David Cameron.

Most people, 56 per cent, said women were promoted for “presentational reasons” and only 24 per cent said women were promoted “on merit”.Overall, only 20 per cent said the reshuffle improved my view of the Conservative Party, while 54 per cent said it had not.

For Ed Miliband the supplementaries won’t make for pleasant reading.

Ed Miliband cannot draw comfort from the survey: just 21 per cent of voters expect the Labour leader to be Prime Minister after the next election, compared to 31 per cent who said the same in May 2013. The proportion of voters who believe Mr Miliband will not be walking into Downing Street is at its highest, 44 per cent, in May 2013, the figure was 37%.

The full ComRes data tables are available here.

Meanwhile Lord Ashcroft tweets




Good IndyRef poll for YES, LAB moves to 7% YouGov lead whilst UKIP has a dreadful night in latest by-elections

Friday, July 18th, 2014

YES edges forward with TNS

For whatever reason TNS and YouGov IndyRef polls have generally had the worst numbers for YES while Survation, ICM and PanelBase have had the best. Polling though is all about trends which is why the YES campaign is delighted by the latest from TNS-BMRB. After three other polls from other firms suggested that YES had stalled TNS overnight has them in their best position yet.

Excluding the DKs the split in 45-55 – a gap of just 10%. What’s pleased YES is that the firm is finding that as the DKs decline as we get closer to the referendum two months exactly from today their side seems to be befitting most.

LAB moves to best share with YouGov since March

UKIP pushed to third in both by-elections it was defending

Greens gain seat from CON & SNP has a loss

Two comfortable holds for the LDs