1st Scottish GE2015 poll of year, Panelbase for S Times, has LAB closing the gap behind SNP to just 10%. Wiki list pic.twitter.com/FhU5kxj4Oa
— Mike Smithson (@MSmithsonPB) January 18, 2015
The worst poll for the SNP for more than 3 months
This morning we have what is undoubtedly the most important poll so far of this general election year – a new survey by Panelbase of Scottish voting intentions which has the Scottish LAB party in its best position since just after September’s IndyRef.
As can be seen in the Wiki list of Scotland only polls LAB is on 31% and the SNP on 41%. The last time Panelbase reported the gap was 17%. SNP hopes of holding the balance of power at Westminster could be a bit less likely.
What makes Scotland so important is that at the last general election LAB took 41 of the 59 Westminster seats north of the border and some polls last year pointed to them losing 30+ of them even down to just 3 or 4
On some projections the Panelbase numbers point to LAB retaining half. Clearly any Scottish losses by LAB would have to be offset by more gains in England and Wales
What we have not had but are likely to see very soon are some Scottish single constituency polls. Lord Ashcroft Tweeted a few days ago that these were “in the field” and hopefully it won’t be too long before the findings become available.
National polls like this from Panelbase are one thing but single seat surveys can show what could be hugely important – incumbency and tactical voting element in individual seats.
If Panelbase is supported by other surveys then it is big news for LAB. This has almost no impact on the main CON-LAB battleground although projections from today’s numbers could point to the Tories doubling their total of Scottish MPs from one to two.