Tuesday, 4 May 2010

The final regional election opinion view...

So the last regional poll data is in from Yougov/Politics home. You can check out the regional polling data headlines here but I wanted to just break down what this is likely to mean (local campaign effects excluded).

Firstly the general move from last week is the reduction of the Lib Dem share regionally. This is to be expected as this data is from the second to just after the third debate, the last regional data was the first properly looking at the very first debate. I calculated, based on the regional variations, along with a predicted rise of turnout to around 66%, that the seats would look like this...

Con 265, Lab 246, Lib Dem 107, Nationalists 11, Others 3, NI 18.

After the changes this week that now looks as such....

Con 272 (+7), Lab 253(+7), Lib Dem 95(-12), Nationalists 9(-2), Others 3, NI 18.

All in all, not much difference overall. The key is what is happening region on region. So what should each region be cheerful/miserable about?

Conservatives

Happy? In London and Wales they're continuing with a gain on 2005, the only two areas they're certain to be while Yorkshire also does strong.
Sad? They are losing more votes than last week compared to 2005 in the South East, the South West (both areas the Lib Dems compete with them in), and the East Midlands.

Labour

Happy? In most of the country their dip from last week has rallied or stayed stable. They will be happy at regaining 5% (now on -9% compared to 2005) in the North East and that elsewhere the freefall in support has stopped
Sad? They're still monumentally down on 2005 in previously strong areas like the North West and Yorkshire, leaving them barely as the most popular party in these regions.

Lib Dems

Happy? In the areas they need to be doing well in, they're doing very well. Still 8% up on 2005 in the South West is a current standing of 5% lead in the region. Capturing Labour's votes in the South East stops the Tories from a 50%+ rating in the region there too.
Sad? They have halved their last week advances in many regions such as the North East, London and Wales...though arguably these aren't areas they were ever seriously contending this time around.

Others

Happy? The SNP have made a great jump to now stand as the second favourite party in Scotland, elsewhere others are polling strong. Perhaps unsurprisingly in the South East others have increased in support, no doubt parties like UKIP getting their message across.
Sad? Just the one blip, Plaid are still performing badly in Wales now coming under the 10% popular support level for the region.

Overall I believe the SNP are the big winners of the last week's movements, though clearly nowhere near the level they need to be to gain the seats they brazenly claimed they could gain. Labour in an end to their slump will also be heartened by rallying popularity in certain areas. Lib Dems have to be terribly pleased that in their main battleground regions the Tory vote is still crumbling. Overall the Tories can only claim to have gained 1% more popularity since 2005, and so can't really have a whole lot to cheer about.