Populus boost for Darling/Brown over Northern Rock

Populus boost for Darling/Brown over Northern Rock

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    Half the voters support nationalisation

A “quickie” poll by Populus for tomorrow’s Times has some good news for the government over the Northern Rock crisis.

A total of 519 people were interviewed last night with 49% backing nationalisation. The sample supported Darling remaining as Chancellor by 50 to 38 per cent.

But it’s not all plain sailing. 58% blamed the Labour Government for some of the problems while 64% blamed the Bank of England and City authorities. There was most criticism of the management of the firm with 76% attaching blame to them.

The problem with this sort of poll is that it did not contain voting intention questions and my guess is that it wasn’t past vote weighted. So any comparisons with polls that have been adjusted in this way are not worth making. One of the oddities of phone polling is that firms like Populus find a disproportionate number of Labour supporters answering the phone. For years the technique known as past vote weighting has been used to scale this back.

I think we need to see some properly adjusted voting intention figures before we can conclude that Gord and Alistair are off the hook.

Mike Smithson

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