Tag Archives: ashcroft polls

That two horse race is on: Scottish Ashcroft polls show it’s Liberal Democrats against the SNP

As Scottish voters start to receive their postal votes in the next few days, they will have much to contemplate. To what extent will those who oppose independence be prepared to vote tactically to keep the SNP from winning Westminster seats.

Their decision may well be informed by yesterday’s Ashcroft polls which show potential SNP gains in all but one of the constituencies in question. Unfortunately, four of them were seats currently held by the Liberal Democrats.

I found the SNP fifteen points ahead in Charles Kennedy’s seat of Ross, Skye & Lochaber, up from five points in February. I also found the SNP leading by eleven points in Jo Swinson’s constituency of East Dunbartonshire, and by thirteen points in North East Fife, where Sir Menzies Campbell is stepping down after 28 years.

The poll found that Mike Moore is in a tough 3 way fight with the Tories in the Borders. He’s on 28%, the SNP on 29% and the Tories on 30%. It could barely be tighter.

All the polls show decisively, though, apart from the Borders, that it’s a clear two horse race between Liberal Democrat MPs and the SNP. The message to Tory and Labour voters is clear. Do they want an SNP MP primarily motivated by independence and forbidden from standing up for their constituents if their party doesn’t allow it, or a Liberal Democrat who will fight tirelessly for their area.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , , and | 43 Comments

New Ashcroft report show Lib Dems gaining ground in majority of seats polled

Lord Ashcroft has released some new polls in six Liberal Democrat/Conservative marginals and two Liberal Democrat/Labour marginals, including Nick Clegg’s seat.

In all but two of the seven Lib Dem held seats,  the Liberal Democrats are gaining ground. In Cambridge, Julian Huppert has pulled head of his Labour rival. He has gained ten points in six months to have a 9 point lead. There is absolutely no room for complacency, though.

Dan Rogerson (North Cornwall), Andrew George (St Ives), Adrian Sanders (Torbay) have slight leads and have gained ground since the previous polls.. Ashcroft emphasises that it’s all very much in the margin of error but it’s going in the right direction. In Sheffield Hallam, Nick Clegg has halved the gap between himself and Labour. What’s interesting is that Clegg’s vote has leapt up by 7 points – but Labour have gained 6 points as Greens and UKIP support has fallen. Even despite that fall in support of the smaller parties, Clegg has closed the gap to within the margin of error.

Ashcroft finds a movement to the Conservatives in both Nick Harvey’s North Devon seat and Stephen Gilbert’s St Austell and Newquay. In North Devon, our vote has actually gone up and in St Austell it’s stayed the same – but UKIP’s vote has melted back to the Conservatives.

In Camborne and Redruth, which Julia Goldsworthy is trying to win back, the news is not so good, with the Liberal Democrats having a bit of a mountain to climb as the Conservatives gain ground. Update: It’s worth incorporating this comment from someone who actually knows the area, Mathew McCarthy, into the main post:

Knowing Camborne, Redruth & Hayle as well as I do know (having been campaigning there pretty much full time since December 2013) this polling simply does not reflect the reality on the ground. We’ve been gaining serious ground in council by elections, winning one from 4th place last summer, and we know we’re in with a shout in May. We have an amazing candidate who is more well known than the current MP and is more popular amongst undecided voters.

We’re working absolutely flat out to deliver a great result in May, and I know Lib Dem teams across the whole country are doing the same. All I have to say to those Liberal Democrats campaigning flat out across Cornwall and South West England and indeed everywhere is thank you for the amazing effort you’re putting in.

Posted in News | Also tagged , and | 20 Comments

Campaigners flock to Gordon to help Christine Jardine

Christine Jardine canvassing selfieI wasn’t surprised to see Alex Salmond ahead in the Ashcroft poll on Gordon. After all, he’s been everywhere at the moment. He has even, entirely coincidentally, of course, started a regular column in one of the local papers.

The thing is, Christine Jardine and her campaign team have always known that they faced a challenge. She doesn’t have the benefit of incumbency, apart from anything else. That’s why they have been working so hard in the year since she was selected to fight the seat. What the Ashcroft poll put beyond doubt was that she has firmly established herself as the clear challenger to Salmond and the SNP. If you are an undecided voter in Gordon who doesn’t want Salmond or the SNP to win, the poll makes it clear that you need to vote for Christine.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , , and | 23 Comments
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