Archive for the 'Scotland' Category


Today’s 2nd terrible poll for Corbyn: YouGov ratings from its latest Scotland survey

Tuesday, July 26th, 2016

Just 19% of Scots LAB GE2015 voters say Corbyn doing well, 66% badly

Remember in those by-gone days in September 2015 when Mr. Corbyn pulled off his sensational leadership victory? Remember what he said would be his biggest initial priority? That was going to be Scotland where five months earlier Labour had slumped from 40 seats in the general election to just one – the same as the LD and CON.

This was absolutely awful for the party and raised serious doubts over whether at Westminster they could ever be a party of government again. Corbyn, quite rightly I’d suggest, said Scotland would be a major early priority.

Well LAB got hammered in the May 2016 Holyrood elections and now we have a YouGov Scotland poll which focuses almost entirety on leader ratings.

There are some reasonable numbers for Sturgeon, May and Ruth Davidson but the finding over the UK LAB leader, Mr. Corbyn are appalling, particularly amongst those who voted for the party at GE2015.

I don’t recall ever seeing as bad ratings figures for a party leader from party supporters.

All this will add to the pressure as he strives to hold onto his job.

Mike Smithson


A proxy bet for a Leave victory

Wednesday, June 8th, 2016


Brexit might kill Scottish nationalism stone dead the same way devolution did.

Sometimes when you think the value on a particular bet has gone, and you have to look for a proxy bet elsewhere, with with the best price on Leave winning at 13/5 perhaps the backing the 5/1 on the next Scottish independence referendum happening before 2020 could be a good proxy bet.

Alex Salmond and Nicola Sturgeon have been saying on several occasions, “Scottish independence would happen within two years if Scotland was at risk of being ‘dragged’ out of the EU.” My position in the past has been Scotland won’t vote for independence whilst the price of oil is substantially lower than the Scottish Government forecast it would be, however Brexit might ameliorate the risk of independence for Scots. As most Brexiteers seem to acknowledge a short term hit in the event of Brexit, thus Scottish independence would seem less riskier to Scots than it normally would.

Whilst I’m no fan of The SNP’s raison d’être, I do admire the abilities and talents of many atop The SNP, I can see Alex Salmond and Nicola Sturgeon exploiting any political sclerosis at Westminster in the event of Brexit to further the cause of Scottish independence.

I’m going to back the 5/1 Ladbrokes are offering, but I’m still debating the 10/1 on Scotland becoming independent by 2020, I’d probably need longer odds, but some PBers might see value in it.



Following the SNPs loss of its Holyrood majority last week ex-party boss Salmond says the voting system unfair

Wednesday, May 11th, 2016

This from a party that got 56 of Scotland 59 Westminster seats last year on 50% of the vote


Elections update as LAB looks set to move to third in Scotland but did better than expected elsewhere

Friday, May 6th, 2016

In London the Tory aftermath starts even before any results are in


Election night 2016: The news continues to roll in

Friday, May 6th, 2016


For the election night thread a special family picture

Thursday, May 5th, 2016


I love this election picture from Nelson in Lancashire in the 1920s. The man on the left in the wagon is my grand-father, Charles Smithson, who went onto to become the town’s mayor.

Tonight we should be getting part of the English local results as well as many of the Scottish and Welsh parliament results.

The balance of the local elections will come tomorrow along with the PCC elections in England and, last of all, the London results on which most of the betting has been focused.

Have a good night.

Mike Smithson


Three days to go and three big developments overnight

Tuesday, May 3rd, 2016

New Holyrood poll suggests that the Tories could still overhaul LAB to come 2nd

Ex CON general election candidate quits party over Zac’s campaign

And a plot to oust Corbyn


Focus on Scotland in a PB/Polling Matters TV show special

Saturday, April 30th, 2016

Thursday’s Holyrood elections, Labour struggles, Brexit and the possibility of Indyref2

Keiran Pedley is joined in the studio by Kate Devlin from the Herald and Craig McAngus of the University of Aberdeen. They discuss the upcoming Scottish Parliament elections and why the SNP is so popular, why Labour is struggling, the upcoming EU referendum and prospects for a second independence referendum.

The audio podcast version

Mike Smithson