Sunday, 2 May 2010

British polls

UK Polling report gives a rolling average figure, based on all polls, of ...

Conservative ... 35%
Labour ... 27%
Lib Dem ... 28% (1)

It's worth noting that one of these polls, Angus Reid, seems to consistently record lower levels of support for Labour than the other polls, usually placing it below 25%. So it is likely that - assuming Angus Reid is less accurate than the other polls - that the Tories have enjoyed a slight surge, and Labour have managed to claw their way back to the same level as the Lib Dems. Which means of, course, that absolutely nothing is predictable, due to the incalculable sin First Past The Post. Labour's support is probably substantially higher in Scotland, whereas the Tories will be doing well if the gain even a couple of seats there. Ditto in Wales. But both these countries have strong national parties. And so on ... so on ... the best thing that you can about FPTP is it gives bloggers a lot of stuff to think about, and everyone can have fun poking about in the entrails and seeing what they want to see.

(For what it is worth, I'm feeling glum and now expect the Tories to form the largest party, though probably still short of a majority.)

Stepping back from the steaming, bloody entrails, to look at the whole bloodied corpse of the British body politic, it has to be said that this is insanity. Britain has suffered 13 years of atrocious governance, broken promises, lies, a needless war in Iraq, the expenses scandal, and Gordon Brown calling an old biddy a bigot, and the Tories are still barely keeping their heads above water in the popular vote, and are likely dismally screwed in terms of seats. How much do people hate them?

People have had had 13 years to find reasons to hate Labour, and Labour have been generous in doling out reasons. The Tories should be looking for a 1997 result, but as it stands, they are struggling to be the largest party, never mind a majority of any sort. the people must hate the Tories with a deep and abiding loathing, and I suspect it won't fade until the faces from the 90s - Howard, Redwood, Hague and so on - are gone.

I think the polls are showing a slight increase in Tory support is because 'Don't Knows' are becoming 'Knows.' In part, this is just what happens during elections as people make up their minds. And, asurdly, it might actually be that Duffygate has given the Tories a 1 or 2 point boost - even though it doesn't seem to have damaged Labour, who have clawed back a point or two on the Lib Dems who, in turn, are starting to subside a bit. If they lose any more support, it is going to be vital where it goes. A single point drop off in Lib Dem support that transfers to Labour might have a huge impact, costing the Lib Dems a few seats and netting Labour a whole load more. Or the Tories, of course, if it goes that way ...
1 - The rolling average figure, as per UK Polling report blog, as of the 2nd of May, 2010. (http://www.ukpollingreport.co.uk/blog/)

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