Fine Gael and Sinn Fein up in Polls

Fine Gael continue their steady rise in popularity in the latest Red C opinion polls conducted for the Sunday Business Post. Sinn Fein are also on the rise, recording 10%, continuing the upward trend indicated in the previous poll. The main losers appear to be the faltering PDs, down to 2% in the polls. Labour are at 12% and Greens on 7%. The 50+ seats up for grabs in Dublin will obviously be critical, and the poll numbers being recorded in the capital for the potential Rainbow government suggest trouble for the current government.

  • Pete Baker

    “Sinn Fein are also on the rise, recording 10%, continuing the upward trend indicated in the previous poll.”

    Well, what you mean is that SF are recovering slowly with a second 1 point increase from their position in April this year.. when they crashed back 3 points to 8% of first preferences.

    You can view the trends for all parties, in a handy graph, here

  • ronan

    it really is hillarious how this site continues to hype sf in the south – is it a northern ‘vhip on the shoulder thing’.

    sf has lingered bwteeen 8 and 10 for a year and you STILL talk of the rise of SF!

  • Keith M

    Given the closeness of the figures and the fact that we’re just under a year away from the election, I think that it’s still wide open. There’s an interesting buzz going around at the moment of a “super rainbow” of FG/Labour/PDs and Greens.

    The PDs need to learn the most basic of lessons, people don’t and won’t vote for a divided party and the open conflict between Harney and McDowell is threatening to do serious damage to the party.

  • Mick Fealty

    The trend chart is useful. The only parties that (relatively speaking) have moved up clearly since 02 are FG, the Greens and SF. But it is worth remembering that The Irish Times poll in January 2005 saw SF dip slightly from 12% to 11%.

    You would have to conclude that some kind of bounce still appears to be on the cards for SF. But it’s a question of how high? 15 seats is a big ask on these figures. The loss of momentum must be worrying.

    I cannot see FF (or even the PDs) polling this badly if the economy is still buoyant next summer. FG has to go up on last time since it was such a bad performance. Labour still looks static.

    Interestingly younger male voters are moving away from SF whilst the PDs rating has dropped to near zero in the youngest cohort.

  • Keith M

    I forgot to add my latest seat projection based on a progressive weighted average of the poll results, comparisons are with the 2002 result)

    FF 71(-10)
    FG 45(+14)
    Labour 23 (+3)
    PDs 4 (-4)
    Green 8 (+2)
    SF 7 (+2)
    Ind/Others 8 (-7)

    This adds to FF+PD at 75 against FG+Lab at 68, with the Greens pushing that to 76. Both sides are still a long way short of the magic 84.

  • Chris Donnelly

    Keith is quite right to state that, with one year left before polling, anything is possible.

    Pete, you’re being your pedantic self, but I guess I shouldn’t begrudge you as I know you’ll be upset that the Sinn Fein trajectory is upwards (as for a 1% rise a month representing a slow recovery, I think I speak for all republicans when I say I could comfortably live with that from this month to the next election…)

    Opinion polls for us political anoraks will always remain compulsory reading, but should always come with hazard lights on.

    I fondly remember RTE opinion polls leading to pundits dismissing Sean Crowe’s and Martin Ferris’ electoral prospects prior to the last election.

    I wouldn’t be predicting the demise of the PDs just yet either: it’s worth remembering how many pundits made that mistake in 2002.

    Mick is right to look at the longer trend. Sinn Fein will undoubtedly increase the party vote- significantly on 2002 figures. But success will rightly be measured on seats gained.

    The party has set out its stall as targeting a quite ambitious return of 15 TDs. Such a result would see Sinn Fein firmly establishing themselves as the 4th party in the state, considerably larger than the smaller parties and within a further electoral bounce of matching Labour, with all that should entail in terms of media exposure.

    In the event of a FG/Lab/Green coalition, it would also lead to a clear alternative coalition being firmly visible before the electorate in the shape of Fianna Fail- Sinn Fein.

    Now, republicans- and indeed Fianna Failers for that matter- have yet to conduct their own internal debates on the merits of such a coalition, but who knows what an election in 2012 would bring?

  • Pete Baker

    “but I guess I shouldn’t begrudge you as I know you’ll be upset that the Sinn Fein trajectory is upwards”

    Feel free to begrudge all you like, Chris.. being accurate about the parties’ positions in these polls is their raison d’etre.. they are tracking polls after all.

    To paraphrase someone, no doubt, what you can definitely know, and what you can only think you know.. are two different things.

    If you think that trend for SF is an steady upward trajectory based on the longer trend shown in these polls, then good luck to you.

    But keep in mind what Mick has said about the loss of momentum, and consider where that momentum could be recovered – I’m sure others will.

    Personally, I’ll take them all, as ever, with a grain of salt.. and their 3 point margin of error.

    But Keith is right to indicate the reported in-fighting as a pointer to the PDs failing fortunes.

    It’s the SBP article by the director of Red C where the interesting gender/age/regional analysis takes place

    The most interesting analysis is by gender and age, which identifies that it is among younger voters that PD support has collapsed.

    In the past three months support among 18-24 year olds has fallen from 5 per cent in Feb-April, to no one from this age group saying that they would support the party in May-June.

    In the 25-44 year old age groups support for the party has fallen by half.

    Support for Sinn Fein has also fallen among younger male voters to the apparent benefit of Fianna Fail.

    For Fine Gael, however, it is the key2 5-44 year old age groups where the party has gained votes, particularly among women, at the expense of Fianna Fail.

    Regionally, Fine Gael appears to have gained a good deal of support in Connacht and Ulster over the past three months, while support for Fianna Fail has fallen slightly in all regions except Munster.

    The Green Party has also increased its support base in Dublin where it takes a very high percentage (15 per cent) of the first preference share over the past three months, but is relatively weaker in Munster and Connacht/Ulster

  • dublin_sf_voter

    Chris

    There is no chance of Sinn Féin, which is a progressive left wing party, propping up a discredited and right wing party like FF! Sinn Féin’s natural ideological partners are Labour and the Greens.

  • heres hoping

    With this poll and some projections around the figures SF position within the political life of this island is becoming stronger and more influential as every day passes. Martin McGuinness said in February that after the election Sinn Fein will become the king makers and this could well be true. If this does become the case the Sinn Fein position as the largest republican/nationalist party in the north will be almost guaranteed for the forseeable future.

  • Garibaldy

    Dublin SF Voter,

    Didn’t the leadership ask for its hands not to be tied on the issue of coalition with FF? I’ve heard Gerry Adams and others refer to when they will be in government in both jurisdictions. Clearly the leadership has no ideological problem with coalition, but won’t want to go in so early that it hampers efforts to attract the discontented vote. The minute they feel they have maximised that, coalition is on the cards with whoever. Reading between the lines, this is what Chris is saying it seems to me.

    As for natural ideological partners being Labour and the Greens, doesn’t say a lot for PSF’s socialism

  • Keith M

    Paddy Power’s latest odds on the next government : Betting on who will form the next government excluding independents.
    Singles only. Others on request.

    FG/LAB/Green 9 – 4
    FF/PD’S 5 – 2
    Given that both of thse options are well short based on the current numbers, the odds are not very generous.

    FF/LAB 7 – 2
    A good value bet in my book.

    FG/LAB 4 – 1
    FF on their own (Min or Maj’) 10 – 1
    FF/SF 11 – 1
    All three of these can best be described as fanciful.

    FG/Lab/PD’s 14 – 1
    This would be an interesting option if the Greens were added to the mix. I might phone up later today and see if the “Super Rainbow” i on offer.

  • ciaran damery

    The recent increase in SF’s poll performance is no surprize. In fact SF traditionally receive a lower percentage in polls than they do in the actual election. This applies in both occupied Ireland and the 26 cos. Thus I expect that SF will return to the next Dáil with at least 15 TDs and the perty will continue to grow in both jurisdictions until reunification is achieved.