Has the BBC been duped by Harriet’s poll spin?

Has the BBC been duped by Harriet’s poll spin?


    Is it too much to ask journalists to check the data?

Reports of an interview with the Deputy Leadership candidate, Harriet Harman, were published on the BBC web-site this morning in which she quoted from a privately commissioned YouGov poll that was carried out in November.

The findings, according to the article, “…show that the Harman/Brown dream ticket is the one with most appeal to “swing voters,” the poll suggests, with 15% of those surveyed saying Ms Harman would make them more likely to vote Labour, compared to 12% for nearest rival Hilary Benn. “I will be making that information available to colleagues, so that if for them the most important thing is getting a fourth term then I will be the best candidate”, she says.

    That’s fine – except she missed out one important fact – an equal proportion, 15% – said they would be LESS LIKELY to vote Labour with Brown and Harman in the tops jobs. When the Brown-Benn option was put 12% said more likely and 12% less likely.

We last reported on this in November after an Independent story had not included the figures showing Harman in a less favourable light. The full YouGov data is here.

Mike Smithson

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