Sunday, 17 November 2019

Scary Opinium Poll

This, of course, doesn't look good.  Labour have been chucking big, headline grabbing policies left, right and centre ... Well, maybe not right.  Left, left and centre left, perhaps.

But then again, Opinium have always tended to show big Tory leads.  The 16% there isn't too outlandish for them.  Every single one of their last ten polls has given the Tories a double digit lead.  And 5 out of that 10 have given it as 15% or 16%.

Another interesting (for me) feature of Opinium's polling is that they seem to have recently started including the nationalist parties in Scotland and Wales - and this seems to have coincided with the ballooning of the Conservative lead.

What could this mean?

1 - The Tories became wildly popular at that time and it is just a coincidence.

2 - Everyone in Scotland who supported SNP but didn't have the option said they'd vote Labour instead, and that was a lot of people; one they got the option of saying they'd vote SNP instead they did so, and Labour's vote collapsed.

3 - Opinium made some big methodological changes at the time and now their polling is completely bonkers.

Looking back at Opinium's polling pedigree, I find more reasons to be sceptical.  In 2017, their polls in the month leading up to the election gave leads of 15%, 13%, 10%, 6% and 7% - so they did detect a narrowing of the Conservative lead, but seem to have consistently underestimated how tight the race was.

So if Opinium say the lead is 16% it is probably 8%.

1 comment:

swordfish said...

Tory lead is clearly weaker now than at same point in 2017:

My Averages (Tory lead over 1st 10 days of campaign: 2017 vs 2019):

YouGov: (2017) 18% ... (2019) 14%
ComRes 18% ... 9%
Panelbase 17% ... 12%
ICM 20% ... 8%
Survation 18% ... 6%
Opinium 16% ... 14%
Kantar 16% ... 10%

Having said that ... all Pollsters have changed their methodology since 2017 (possibly in a Labour-friendly direction in some cases ... though need more evidence to be sure) ... and some Pollsters do have Tories increasing their lead over last couple of weeks ... I suspect Labour will ultimately manage to narrow the lead but not to the same degree as last time (though that still leaves the crucial question of the actual accuracy / veracity of current polling).

Labour's task is to convince as many LDs as possible to vote strategically, while holding on to its Brexit supporters by emphasising NHS / anti-Austerity / social policy.

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