Friday, 5 March 2010

New Poll: Labour's Albert Owen to hold Ynys Môn in General Election?

I don't know - you go away for five minutes and YouGov publishes a new Wales-only voting intention poll...! Accordingly, for your benefit, the Druid has temporarily interrupted his short trip and crunched the regional numbers to find out what is happening in North Wales. So here is a graph showing the transition of support for the main parties in the North since the General Election in 2005 up to and including today's latest poll:

The big news is that Plaid's Support in the North has unexpectedly and dramatically nosedived 7 points since the last poll in mid-January, putting them on just 10% - even lower even than the Lib Dems. Of course the sample size in North Wales of around 250 people is quite small so there is room for error but, still, 7 points is a large drop. The Druid would guess that it may be due to Plaid Cymru's ridiculous pensions pledge being quite correctly seen as misleading fantasy politics - which as the Druid said at the time makes Plaid look like not a serious party.

The other news is that at the expense of Plaid Cymru both the Labour and Conservative vote is up. What does this mean for the General Election result in Ynys Môn? Using exactly the same formula which the Druid used for the last poll, the change on the 2005 General Election results are shown below (bottom row):

Of course the situation across the whole of North Wales is not homogenous, but these results are the best guide we have. Therefore, again assuming that Peter Rogers does not stand (although there is no evidence that this is the case) and his support swings behind the Conservatives, this is what the new polling data predicts for Ynys Môn:

The result: A Labour hold for Albert Owen with Plaid and the Conservatives fighting it out for second place with just a couple hundred votes between them. 

I'm going to be looking into all these latest YouGov figures in more detail as soon as I get back to Anglesey, but in the meantime it looks like 'squeaky bottom time' for Plaid's Dylan Rees who until recently was widely thought (by himself included) to be a shoo-in for the seat.


Welsh Ramblings said...

Hi Druid. Something is anomalous and inconsistent with the poll. I'm sure you'll see it too when you look at the figures, but i've blogged about it. Hope you can find time to comment.

The Druid of Anglesey said...

Hi Ramblings, here's what I've commented over on your blog: "You're certainly right that at face value there appears to be something anomalous here with regards to the support for the Assembly being much, much stronger in N.Wales in the BBC poll than the lastest YouGov poll. There are three possible reasons: (a) due to the fairly low sample, one of the polls is an outlier; (b) respondents answer differently when the question is asked differently (i.e. whereas the YouGov poll only allowed a binary "yes/no" reply to the question regarding whether the Assembly should have more law making powers, the BBC poll offered a selection of possible answers of which only one was negative and five were broadly positive); and (c) the BBC poll used the North Wales 'NHS' region as its 'definition' of N.Wales ( whereas I believe the YouGov definition of N.Wales does not include Meirionydd Nant Conwy for some reason. As that is Eifion Llwyd's constituency, could there be that there is much larger support for the Assembly in that particular region which is lacking elsewhere in N.Wales?"

Anonymous said...

It's because Dwyfor Meirionydd is in the Mid & West region for National Assembly elections. Good pollsters will keep regular regions for all sets of elections so that they can build up a data bank and make useful comparisons over time. Which is what we need. Trust the BBC to be wrong, again. Good for YouGov.

The silly term "North Wales" is not a constant as you rightly observe. I don't know why any self-respecting Welsh person would use it. If you want to describe a place, call it by it's proper name, like Ynys Môn constituency. Or are we back to Cardigan and Merioneth too?