Tag Archives: opinion polls

Opinion: it’s no good counting on those rose-tinted spectacles

We’re a generally an optimistic lot aren’t we, looking on the brighter side when the world and his wife thinks we should be walking around with our heads in our hands. I even wrote a piece about how genuinely cheerful we are for the New Statesman the other day…

But whisper it gently… and just between us… you don’t think we’re fooling ourselves do you?

I say this because we seem to be taking it as read that the mid term polls are generally where we are now. “It’s always this bad’ seems to be the general gist…

Problem is – it’s …

Posted in Op-eds | 150 Comments

Why there isn’t a British Nate Silver

A skim-read of Wednesday morning’s headlines might have left folk confused as to who had been declared the victor of the US presidential election: Barack Obama or Nate Silver.

For those who don’t know Nate Silver, he’s the analytical guru behind the FiveThirtyEight blog (named after the number of electoral college votes), now housed at the New York Times, which scrutinises and filters opinion polls. He first rose to prominence four years ago after predicting the winner in 49 of the 50 US states during the Obama-McCain presidential contest, …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , and | 17 Comments

Lord Rennard: “There’s no substitute for democracy”

Liberal Democrat peer and campaigning guru Chris Rennard went on Radio 4 yesterday to respond to the Earl of Glasgow saying that we should back down on Lords reform.

Lord Rennard said that there have been  plans for an elected Lords were not Nick Clegg’s alone and that there had been efforts to reform the upper House for 50 years before Nick Clegg was born.

He took a mild swipe at his Liberal Democrat colleague Lord Steel when asked about the latter’s plans to limit the reforms to allowing voluntary retirement and sacking those peers who don’t attend. Those things, said Rennard, …

Posted in News | Also tagged , , , , , and | 2 Comments

Opinion: Exploding the tuition fees polling myth

It is generally assumed knowledge – within the Liberal Democrats as well as in the wider political world – that our party’s poll numbers took a big nosedive right after the coalition government voted (excepting rebels) to change the way tuition works in England by raising the limit on what universities can charge students per year to £9,000.

For instance, a common answer I get when I ask fellow Lib Dems how many points they think we lost post tuition fees is “about 8%”.

What I want to do here is not to discuss the pros and cons of the 2010 Higher …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged | 35 Comments

LDVideo: Understanding how opinion polls work, Yes Minister-style

Are for the re-introduction of national service, or against it? In this clip Yes Minister explains how you can hold both views simultaneously…

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Tim Farron writes: Enough doom and gloom, we have the greatest opportunity in the history of our party

I don’t know if you noticed, but the elections on May 5th weren’t all that good for the Liberal Democrats. There was that business of the referendum defeat too. In much of the country we got an absolute pasting.

Journalists and non-political friends keep coming up to me with pained expressions, asking if I’m all right, speaking to me as if I’ve just suffered a bereavement. I smile back and tell them to get stuffed – I’m used to 2 things as a Liberal this last 25 years 1) losing stuff 2) not giving up!

So I for one am not prepared …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , and | 44 Comments

Disaster for Labour as one in five desert the party

The anti-Lib Dem meme of choice on the opinion polls has been of voters deserting the party. Our opinion poll ratings are down compared to 6th May and it must be a disaster for the party which would, if many Labour activists’ fevered fantasies were to come true, disappear for good.

Except that idea’s looking more and more stretched.

The Independent runs a ComRes poll today showing the party’s poll rating up two percent to a very respectable 18%. If the poll is accurate, hundreds of thousands of voters have switched from the other parties to the Lib Dems …

Posted in Op-eds | 47 Comments

Marks out of ten for the coalition?

The Guardian is running the latest ICM poll today.

The overall story is good for the Lib Dems – up three points to 19% (both Labour and the Tories are slightly down against the last ICM poll), and the Coalition remains stubbornly popular, still in the 55-60% range.

But this is just one poll (and there are others both significantly better and worse for the party), so let’s not worry too much about the headline figures.

More interesting is the line the Guardian takes and the “marks out of ten” for the Coalition Government.

First the line taken in the article. If …

Posted in Polls | Also tagged and | 15 Comments

Poll gives Lib Dem/Con coalition 60% approval

A YouGov poll suggests that the Lib Dem/Conservative coalition has the approval of 60% of the public – almost exactly the combined vote of the two parties in last week’s General Election.

Of course, the reality is slightly more complex than this, with a significant minority of Labour voters approving and not every Lib Dem or Conservative voter being in favour.

Here’s what YouGov say:

The British public broadly approve of the Conservative-Lib Dem coalition that, under Tory David Cameron, now forms the Government at Westminster. 60% of the British public say they approve of the Conservative-LibDem coalition, following an unprecedented week

Posted in Polls | Also tagged | 40 Comments

Pollwatch – State of the Leaders: Clegg +18%, Brown -27%, Cameron +5% (March 2010)

Yesterday, Pollwatch looked at the state of the parties in March; today it’s the turn of the party leaders.

As with all polls, what follows comes with caveats. Only three polling companies – YouGov, Angus RS and Mori – this past month asked questions specifically to find out the public’s views of the three main party leaders. And each asks variants on the basic question – do you think Clegg/Brown/Cameron are doing a good job – to come up with their figures, so comparison ain’t easy. But, still, we don’t indulge in polls often, so here goes …

Here, in chronological order, are the results of the four polls published in March asking the public to rate the three major party leaders:

Posted in Op-eds and Polls | Also tagged , and | 2 Comments

Pollwatch – State of the Parties: Lib Dems 19%, Labour 31%, Tories 38% (March 2010)

March may have 31 days, but it saw an extraordinary 39 polls conducted. So frenetic has been the activity, we at Lib Dem Voice even published a mid-month report to keep track of their findings. And despite all the hyped-up headlines – both in print and online – of minor fluctuations signifying some grand new trend which will transform the electoral arithmetic, the reality is that remarkably little changed in March.

As you can see from the full list of polls conducted in March, in chronological order of publication:

    Tories 39.0, Labour 29.0, Lib Dem 15.0 (Opinium)
    Tories 38.0, Labour 33.0, Lib Dem 16.0 (3rd March, YouGov)
    Tories 38.0, Labour 32.0, Lib Dem 19.0 (4th, YouGov)
Posted in Op-eds and Polls | 2 Comments

Was 6th October the day it started going awry for the Tories?

The opinion polls are up-and-down day-in-day-out at the moment, making it almost impossible to say with any confidence whether we are firmly in hung parliament territory, or whether the most likely result is still a Tory victory at the coming general election. But one thing is beyond doubt: the last six months has seen a substantial narrowing in the Tories’ opinion poll lead.

In October 2009, the Tories were polling at around 42%, Labour at 28% – a convincing Tory lead of 14%. Last month, the Tories were at 39%, Labour at 31%, a 3% swing from the …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , , , and | 4 Comments

Poll hints hung parliament could be vote winner

As the election draws closer and the polls seem firmly stuck in or near hung-parliament territory, the latest Guardian/ICM poll suggests that the prospect of no one party having an absolute majority isn’t scaring voters as much as Labour and the Conservatives might like.

As the Guardian reports:

Voters remain unconvinced by the Conservative alternative, with 29% thinking a clear Tory victory would be best. Only 18% think Britain would be best served by a strong Labour win this spring. Both groups are outnumbered by the 44% who want a hung parliament in which the government works with smaller parties such

Posted in News | 5 Comments

What the pollsters think will happen at the general election

Forget data sets, interquartile ranges and margin of error. The Guardian recently reported the collective wisdom of the wet-fingers-in-the-air of the UK’s pollsters, who met this past week “to refine their methods ahead of the election, and ended with off-the-cuff predictions for the final result.”

And here’s what they came up with:

Statisticians from most of Britain’s main polling companies attended the session, organised jointly by the British Polling Council and the National Centre for Research Methods.

Four of them were brave enough to come up with predicted vote shares for the main parties. Put together they average a shade under 40%

Posted in General Election and Polls | Also tagged | 8 Comments



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  • User AvatarSarah Noble 25th Oct - 11:24pm
    Callum: mind you, that would mean that a) the SNP would have to drop their policy of abstention on English matters and more importantly, b)...
  • User AvatarCaron Lindsay 25th Oct - 11:21pm
    I think it's fair to say that I am not a fan of the Labour Party. One of their first acts in government was to...
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    Since only the already relatively decentralised matters of education and NHS gained majority support amongst members of the party most in favour of localism, does...
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    No Adnan, the reason Yugoslavia fell apart was because it depended on one man to hold it together. Tito was a great leader but he...
  • User AvatarIgor Sagdejev 25th Oct - 11:17pm
    @Tony Greaves Yes, we've had enough of miscoalition.
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    @Frank Bowles - Well, the Union was saved (for now), so to Westminster they go.