— Mike Smithson (@MSmithsonPB) April 4, 2013
Remember how Ken ran him so close?
Just before the Easter weekend we reported on a new YouGov poll that had a Boris-led Tory party level pegging with an EdM LAB one when the named leader voting intention question was put.
This caused something of a stir and was in line with similar polling at the time of the Olympics. There’s little doubt that substituting the Boris name for Dave does give a boost to Tory ratings.
What we should also ask is how serious such findings are and a wider one relating to polling about Boris when tested against real results.
For six pollsters carried out voting surveys ahead of the May 2012 mayoral election and the final survey of every single one of them over-stated Boris’s eventual winning margin.
In the election Boris beat Ken by 3.06% when second preferences were allocated. This compared with (see UKPR here) Opinium +4%, YouGov +6%, TNS-BMRB +6%, ComRes +8%, Survation +10% and Populus +12%.
On the night, as no doubt many will recall, the big surprise was that Ken, with all the issues surrounding his campaign, had run Boris so close.
It appeared that the race had closed in the final days.
The lesson I take from this is to be more wary of named leader polling when it relates to Johnson.
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