U.S.

US election polls: what went wrong?

Posted in Bad polling, Politics, Polling Matters, U.S. on November 9th, 2016 by Leo – Comments Off on US election polls: what went wrong?

Keiran and I recorded a Polling Matters podcast at 5am on election morning, responding to the results and debating what went wrong with the polls.

You can listen here:

 

Why Corbyn now can’t be beaten until he loses a General Election: Polling Matters

Posted in Labour leadership, Polling Matters, U.S. on September 30th, 2016 by Leo – Comments Off on Why Corbyn now can’t be beaten until he loses a General Election: Polling Matters

On Polling Matters this week I argued that the Labour leadership challenge has made Corbyn far stronger than he was before:

His overall victory wasn’t much bigger than last time, 62% compared with just under 60%. But there was a significant increase in his win among the members, from about 50% to close to 60%. This was partly about people who voted for Burnham last year, but is mostly about a change in the membership. Smith won nearly two-thirds of people who had joined Labour before the last general election, while Corbyn is utterly dominant among more recent members. The party membership has changed and is much more pro-Corbyn – although this had little to do with the leadership challenge.

But the membership challenge itself will also make things even harder for those who want rid of Corbyn, for two reasons:

1. He won 70% of registered supporters, who paid £25 to vote. It has to be expected that Momentum will try to register those people as full party members, which will mean the membership will become even more sympathetic to Corbyn.

2. As I’ve argued before, around a quarter of people who voted Corbyn last year were shakeable in their faith. They would prefer a leader who could win an election to one who they agree with about everything. The size of his victory among members suggests to me that he’s won many if not most of those people (my view in May was, they needed Corbyn to be given longer before they were persuaded he had to go). Having made the decision to vote for Corbyn this time, they’re now pyschologically committed to him and it’s going to be harder to shake their support in future than it would have been if there hadn’t been a challenge.

This and discussion of how Labour can win the public, and the US election, on podcast and video:

Politics now favours the Lib Dems but they’ve still got huge problems: Polling Matters

Posted in Politics, Polling Matters, U.S. on September 22nd, 2016 by Leo – 1 Comment

On this week’s Polling Matters I argued that the shape of politics at the moment is a great opportunity for the Lib Dems. They’re the party that, by miles, is seen as politically closest to most voters:

  • On a 7-point left-right scale, 70% of people who have an opinion put themselves in the middle 3 positions
  • 78% put the Lib Dems in those positions
  • The Tories are the next-most placed in those positions, and still only 40% put them there.

This may be beginning to show: the Lib Dems have been winning local council by-elections in the last few months, when every other major party has had a net loss.

But their voting intent score is still as bad as it was a year ago and only 22% say they’d even consider voting Lib Dem. The party has to resolve this contradiction, somehow persuading far more voters that they’re in the same place.

I see two huge barriers to resolving this:

1. Hardly anyone outside politics hears about the Lib Dems any more. It’s much easier to get people’s attention as a small party if you make radical protest noises: Iraq, tuition fees. It’s much harder to do that if the space you want to occupy is, essentially, Blairite. They’ve tried this with the EU, and Farron has made his appeal to ’97 Labour voters explicit, but this doesn’t seem to have made much difference yet. It’s much more difficult to come up with dramatic announcements that will allow people to understand what you stand for if you want to present yourself as responsible modernisers.

2. They may not have the members and MPs for this. I don’t claim to be an expert on the membership of the party, but after 13 years of positioning itself as a left-liberal alternative to New Labour, I’m not sure how much appetitie there is for a reversal. That said, 5 years in coalition may have shaken up the membership on that front. But even if Farron wanted to become the new Clegg (and his instincts are clearly to the left of Blair’s) I’m not sure how much people in the party yearn to be a boring party of the centre.

I talked about this and the US election with Keiran and Matt Shaddick from Ladbrokes. Podcast and video below.

 

 

Polling Matters: the doctors’ strike, Trump & can Owen Smith win?

Posted in Labour leadership, Polling Matters, U.S. on September 10th, 2016 by Leo – Comments Off on Polling Matters: the doctors’ strike, Trump & can Owen Smith win?

I was on Polling Matters this week. The topics were:

1) Leo reacts to Don Brind’s analysis on the last show that Owen Smith can still win and looks at Corybn’s impact on the Labour brand
2) Keiran looks at what Ashcroft polling tells us about what voters want from Brexit and what it means for government
3) Katy looks at YouGov polling on potential future Junior Doctors strike
..and then Keiran explains why his trip to America makes him think that Trump could still win.
Podcast version:

And video:

 

Polling Matters: May, Trump & past Prime Ministers

Posted in Politics, Polling Matters, U.S. on August 18th, 2016 by Leo – Comments Off on Polling Matters: May, Trump & past Prime Ministers

I was on Polling Matters again this week with Keiran and Rob, talking Theresa May, past Prime Ministers and the US election.

 

Polling Matters: EU referendum turnout, Trump & spread betting

Posted in Europe, Polling Matters, U.S. on April 13th, 2016 by Leo – Comments Off on Polling Matters: EU referendum turnout, Trump & spread betting

I was on Polling Matters again this week, talking about the significance of turnout in the EU referendum, the state of the US races, and political spread betting. Mike Smithson was in the chair while Keiran’s on holiday.

 

 

Polling Matters: Trump vs Hillary, Osborne & Labour

Posted in Politics, Polling Matters, U.S. on March 24th, 2016 by Leo – Comments Off on Polling Matters: Trump vs Hillary, Osborne & Labour

I was on Polling Matters this week, talking about how Trump compares with Hillary in national polls; the impact of the Budget on Osborne’s chances of becoming Prime Minister; and the significance of polls that are putting Labour level with the Tories.

 

 

Polling Matters: South Carolina, the EU vote & Labour

Posted in Europe, Polling Matters, U.S. on February 18th, 2016 by Leo – Comments Off on Polling Matters: South Carolina, the EU vote & Labour

I was back on Polling Matters this week, talking about the US primaries, the EU referendum and Labour’s terrible poll ratings.

Polling Matters: Iowa and the EU referendum

Posted in Europe, Politics, Polling Matters, U.S. on February 5th, 2016 by Leo – Comments Off on Polling Matters: Iowa and the EU referendum

My first time back on Polling Matters for a while, in time for the pilot of a TV format. As Keiran says, faces for radio.

 

Apologies for the brain fade in my first answer.

Despite Hurricane Sandy, arguments about climate change will continue

Posted in Climate Sock, U.S. on November 3rd, 2012 by Leo – Comments Off on Despite Hurricane Sandy, arguments about climate change will continue

In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, it would be surprising if opinion polls, particularly in the US, don’t show an increase in concerns about climate change. But it would be a mistake for those worried about climate change to expect that increasingly frequent extreme weather like this will settle the case in public opinion for taking action.

The relationship between disastrous weather and worries about climate change has been clearly demonstrated. In November 2000, when much of Britain flooded after the then wettest autumn on record, the storm was linked to climate change. Concern about the environment subsequently spiked in MORI’s issues index.

In 2011, a paper in Nature Climate Change demonstrated that those who have personal experience of flooding are more likely to be concerned about climate change:

The paper also showed that those who had experienced flooding saw climate change as less uncertain, and felt more confident that their actions would have an effect on climate change.

So we might think that any doubts about the likelihood and impact of climate change will very soon be blown away by the increasing frequency of storms like Sandy, and other events like heatwaves and droughts.

It’s a plausible – though grim – argument, yet I think it’s problematic on two levels.

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