Thursday, 12 June 2008

Plenty fun with fungibility

There's a question which is worrying away at the body politic in Scotland, and it goes like this:
"Will the excellent performance of the SNP Government and the atrocious performance of the Labour Government translate into a shift in voting intentions?"

How much fungibility is there in the system, how volatile is the unsettled will of the Scottish people? Well, if you take Peter Snow out of the cupboard and dust him down, you can have a bit of psephological fun

There were five polls in May where a Scottish sample could be discerned: Populus/Times (2-4 May); YouGov/Sun (7-8 May); Comres/Independent on Sunday (14-15 May); YouGov/Sunday Times (15-16 May); and YouGov/Telegraph (27-29 May). Combining them gives you the following rankings for a Westminster election with the change from the last Westminster election in brackets:
SNP: 35% (+17%)
Lab: 26% (-14%)
Con: 20% (+4%)
LD: 14% (-9%)
Other: 5% (1%)

Chuck those figures into the electoral calculus and you come up with all sorts of interesting results. The one I'm most interested in, of course, is Edinburgh North and Leith, and that comes out with a good result for the SNP:

29.16 SNP
23.25 Con
20.24 Lab
18.90 LD
8.45 Others

So that would be an SNP gain with Labour pushed into third place by a resurgent Conservative vote and the Libdems trailing in fourth and out of the running. Our canvassing is showing a win for us, but with the Conservatives just behind Labour and more of a melt-down for the Libdems and not quite so strong a showing for the other parties.
It would be a stunningly good night for the SNP, a decent night for the Conservatives, a fairly sore night for the Libdems, and a disastrous night for Labour. There's a long, long way to go, but it appears that the change in Scottish politics last year will continue to echo for some time yet, and that performance in government is going to be an issue in the election - whenever it comes.

3 comments:

Alwyn ap Huw said...

How do you manage to put the SNP result into Electoral Calculus? I can only find boxes for Lab Con LD. If only these are entered the SNP/Plaid vote remains static at the 2005 level.

Calum Cashley said...

It's got Scotland pages - the link is at the top left of the home page

ccfc said...

the gain is assuming of course that you are actually fighting the seat. Keep door knocking..........