h1

The latest state of play in the battle to become LAB leader

May 28th, 2015




h1

Looking back to those final GE15 phone polls one thing stands out about LAB backers…

May 28th, 2015

There were more non-GE10 voters in the LAB totals than in CON

The British Polling Council inquiry into what went wrong with the GE15 is well under way and no doubt many will be putting forward theories about what caused them to be so wrong.

One of the factors that I believe was partly responsible for the overstatement of LAB shares is featured in the chart above – a larger part of its support according to the surveys was coming from those who did not vote for the main parties at the 2010 election.

From the data that’s made available by the pollsters it’s not possible to identify whether these were non voters or not but given that 90%+ of the overall 2010 vote went to LAB-CON-LD it is a reasonable assumption that the above is a good pointer.

Part of this is accounted for by those in the 18-23 age bracket who, clearly, could not have voted at the previous general election and they were more likely to be LAB backer but that is only a partial explanation.

The same happened in much of the by-election polling over the past year. LAB was attracting more non-voters at the previous election than other parties.

    All the evidence is that the best guide to whether you will vote in the next election is whether you voted in the last one.

The BPC needs to address the way pollsters deal with likelihood to vote. It should be more than just telling the interviewer that you are 10/10 certain.

Mike Smithson





h1

We now have the actual wording of the referendum question

May 28th, 2015

“Should the United Kingdom remain a member of the European Union”

As expected the wording of the EU referendum question makes remaining in the EU the YES option while leaving the NO one.

There’s a view that people prefer to vote Yes to things than be negative and the planned wording therefore favours staying in the EU. I’m not so convinced. The last two big referendums, AV in 2011 and the IndyRef in Scotland, both saw No sides win.

What will be interesting is how the question plays out in the polls. The latest finding by YouGov last weekend had the wording “Do you think that the UK should be a member of the European Union?”

This was neutral in relation to the status quo and had Yes 12% ahead.

We don’t know yet about timing though reports overnight suggest that the government is aiming for May next year when the devolved government elections in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland take place. There is also the London Mayoral election.

Mike Smithson





h1

Getting EVEL through will be a tough fight for the Tories

May 27th, 2015

The next move is with John Bercow

A significant moment on this historic day in the commons was a point of order by Alex Salmond about the Tory plans to introduce EVEL (English Votes for English Laws) by changing the House’s standing orders.

Salmond argues that this is a major constitutional issue and that the incoming government should not be allowed to make a change which creates two classes of MPs by using its majority to change standing orders – the rules under which commons business is carried out.

Bercow responded by saying he’d look into the Salmond point and report back. My reading is that the government’s initial plan won’t get through and some other mechanism will have to be made.

The big thing today, of course, has been the presence of the huge contingent of 56 SNP MPs who look set to have an impact in all sorts of ways and this was just a taster.

Mike Smithson





h1

Developments this afternoon show that Yvette Cooper is still very much in the LAB leadership race

May 27th, 2015

At current prices she’s the value bet

This afternoon it’s been announced that a further six MPs have come out and said they are backing Yvette Cooper – a move that reminds me of Henry H Manson’s words on the site ten days ago about her having the best organised campaign.

This fits with an article that Isabel Hardman of the Spectator wrote yesterday about Yvette’s effort.

“…But even while she has been rather quiet about what she thinks, Cooper has been phenomenally well-organised. Her leadership campaign,..is already up and running in the country, not just in Westminster, with the first Yvette4Leader meetings in the diary and regional organisers in place already. Given the party is now electing its leaders through one member one vote, that sort of outreach operation to the party membership is even more important than before.”

Wirh second preferences likely to be very important then Yvette looks set to benefit more than either Mr. Burnham or Kendall.

I’ve taken some of the very good prices for Yvette on Betfair getting one on a 7/1.

Mike Smithson





h1

It looks as though Cameron will try to get referendum out of the way as soon as possible

May 27th, 2015

It’s Queen’s Speech day and the first time that Cameron had been able to act free of the restrictions of coalition.

Judging from the headlines a key measure that the new government will seek to bring in quickly is the referendum on whether Britain should remain part of the EU. LAB had already said it will back the plan and the only change it might seek is on the extension of the franchise to 16-17 year olds.

From what’s come out overnight the planned question will involve voters choosing Yes to stay in and No to leave.

From a political perspective Cameron is trying to get this dealt with as soon as possible on the parliament. The referendum itself creates uncertainty and having the vote sooner rather than later minimises that.

The out campaigners have already indicated that they’d prefer a longer period before this comes to the crucial vote.

Which way will it go? The best stay betting price is 4/11 from Ladbrokes while Hills have 9/4 on leave.

Mike Smithson





h1

PB Nighthawks is now open

May 26th, 2015

Home of the web’s best political conversation

Why not relax, and converse into the night on the day’s events in PB NightHawks.

If you’re a lurker, when it comes to your lurking, why not, Give It Up, Get Down Tonight and get posting.

The round up of recent events (click on the links below, and it will bring up the relevant link)

  1. Antifrank looks at 2020: the geography of Labour’s next campaign
  2. Liz Kendall: full story of the outsider who became the Labour leadership candidate with the ‘mo.’ As the Blairite challenger picks up the backing of Chuka Umunna, who is Liz Kendall?
  3. All of the leadership candidates are good, but there’s something about Mary
  4. Ryan Coetzee’s take on what went wrong for the Lib Dems in the general election
  5. The problem for Labour isn’t toxicity, it’s credibility
  6. Labour’s saviour may never reach Downing Street
  7. Cameron tries to bring the campaign into government
  8. Nicola Sturgeon: Hard for SNP to get Tory concessions
  9. UKIP’s Suzanne Evans calls for cross-party alliance to create EU referendum ‘no’ campaign
  10. Welsh first minister attacks Labour’s strategy in Scotland: Carwyn Jones says Scottish Labour failed to learn from party’s fight against rising nationalism in Wales, and might struggle to recover
  11. Alistair Carmichael’s political survival has become a matter of principle
  12. We need a truly proportional voting system
  13. Labour’s Tom Watson steps into limelight
  14. Oops… Anti-gay Westboro Baptist church blames Ivory Coast for Ireland’s gay marriage result
  15. Vindication at last for those of us who drink nights and work days
  16. Dawn of the cyborgs: how humans will turn themselves into gods


h1

Ladbrokes saying that LAB leadership now a 2 horse race between Burnham & Kendall

May 26th, 2015

I’m not sure that Yvette can be written out so easily

I’m very mindful when considering the LAB leadership battle of the comments in the recent post from Henry G Manson who has built up a good reputation for his reading of Labour.

Just over a week ago Henry observed that Yvette Cooper not Burnham should be the favourite. I am very cautious about ignoring his advice on these matters.

But there’s little doubt that the momentum is with Kendall at the moment and that is being reflected in the betting.

We are a very long way from the end of this race – September 12th – and an awful lot can happen in the intervening period.

Mike Smithson