Does it need an 8.5 pc swing to oust Byrne or a 12.6 one?

Does it need an 8.5 pc swing to oust Byrne or a 12.6 one?

Which 2005 “notional” result do we believe?

A couple of weeks ago it was noted here that there was a big difference in the two most used projections for what the 2005 result in Ed Balls’s new seat at Morley and Outwood would have been on the new boundaries.

This afternoon, while researching for piece on Ladbrokes new market on how many cabinet members could lose their seats I’ve found an even more glaring disparity between the UKPollingReport projection and that from Professors Thrasher and Rallings for the Press Association.

The former puts the swing required in Birmingham Hodge Hill at 12.6% while the latter is at 8.5%. So if you were looking at the Anthony Wells numbers you would assume that Byrne was pretty safe – with Thrasher and Rallings it looks a lot tighter.

These numbers could have a big political impact because the view of the party machines over whether the seats are marginal or not and the level of resource allocated could change depending on which notionals you look at.

Among the other cabinet members who might be at risk I’ve noticed that Ben Bradshaw‘s Exeter seat is more marginal with Thrasher and Rallings than with Anthony Wells. Jack Straw’s Blackburn, however, is a little bit safer.

A broader issue is that I believe the Anthony’s “notionals” are what are used as the basis for his excellent swing calculator. Would his projections look different, I wonder, with the Thrasher and Rallings figures?

  • Polls tonight. There are reported to be two new polls, including an ICM, due out tonight for tomorrow’s papers. I’m off to a social event (without my lap-top!) and will cover them on my return.
  • Mike Smithson

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