How many of the CON 2010 gains can be retained?
At the end of last year I started monitoring England only data from the main pollsters partly in response to the very different political environment that’s developed in Scotland.
All the phone pollsters are providing this in their regular datasets as well as Survation and Opinium. It would be great if YouGov and Populus could follow suit.
For if, as expected, LAB suffers major losses to the SNP in Scotland then it will have to offset them elsewhere if it is to have any chance of coming out top on seats. It does have a handful of targets in Wales but the big battleground is England where it lost 90+ seats at GE2010.
For the Tories the main objective is to hang on to as many of those 2010 gains and hope to pick up seats from elsewhere particularly Lib Dem ones in England.
So England is crucial but so far at least the polling is not providing us with anything like a clear picture. The chart shows the range – from the blues being 6% behind in England to them being 4% ahead.
The big figure to bear in mind is the 11.4% vote margin that the Tories had in 2010. They are sone way from replicating that performance.