Which 2005 “notional” result should we believe?
After JackW’s earlier thread I thought I’d have a further look at Morley & Outwood – the seat with new boundaries that the Schools Secretary, the public-school educated Mr. Balls, will try to defend at the coming election.
And to my surprise I came up with two rather different projections of what the 2005 election outcome would have been on the new boundaries.
Anthony Wells UKPollingReport has this:- LAB 19956 (50.2%): CON: 10172 (25.6%): LD: 4030 (10.1%): OTH : 5570 (14%) suggesting a majority of 24.6%
Professors Thrasher and Rallings for the Press Association, has LAB 19024 (45.96): C 10355 (25.02%): LD 4159 (10.05%): OTH 7851 (18.97%) – a notional majority of 20.93%
Given that this seat is very much on the margin of what might happen a differential on this scale is highly significant. The massive 33,000 sample PH Marginals poll in September found a swing in West Yorkshire marginals of 9.6%. This is almost within reach of that required by Thrasher & Rallings but a fair bit behind Wells.
This is more important than just betting. It could affect local party strategies and decisions over how much effort to put in. With Wells this seat appears a lot safer for Labour than with Rallings and Thrasher. A “2005 share” of 45.96% is a lot less daunting than one over 50%
I wonder how many other discrepancies between the two projections there are in the list of 650 seats? In the meantime I am going to check both with all my punting.
Morley & Outwood betting:
A survey of PB users. There are plans to carry out a survey of PB users early in the New Year in conjunction with a professional research agency. This will be promoted strongly on the site to both lurkers as well as regular commenters.
It will also embrace the majority of site visitors who only rarely open up the threads. It's hoped that this might form part of an academic study on politics and the internet in the election run-up.
As a result I've put a halt to the unofficial survey that had been instituted without any reference to me and whose sample was confined to just those who were following the thread at the time.