Fianna Fail get bounce, PDs about to drop…

Despite shifting money in the betting market, it looks like Fianna Fail are making a late run. World By Storm cautions about consistent under polling by Fianna Fail. That is certainly one question raised by today’s Irish Times poll, which gives Fianna Fail a five point bounce.

The core vote for the parties is: Fianna Fáil 39 per cent (up four points); Fine Gael 21 per cent (down one point); Labour 8 per cent (down two points); Sinn Féin 8 per cent (no change); Greens 5 per cent (up one point); PDs 1 per cent (down one point); Independents/ others 4 per cent (no change); and undecided voters 15 per cent (no change). When voters were asked which of the alternative coalitions they would like to see forming the next government, the Fianna Fáil-PD coalition had moved into a six-point lead over the Fine Gael-Labour alliance, with the possible support of the Greens.

This marked a significant turnaround from the previous week when the alternative alliance had a two-point lead. There was also a change in the perception about who would win the election, with a four-point lead for the Fianna Fáil-PD coalition compared to a one-point lead for the Fine Gael-led alternative in the previous poll.

On the issue of the Taoiseach’s finances, only 29 per cent of voters believe he has given the full picture, while 58 per cent think he has further questions to answer. When asked if it was a serious issue in the election campaign, 36 per cent said it was but 54 per cent said it was not. An overwhelming majority of Fianna Fáil and PD voters felt it was not an issue but a majority of all other party supporters felt it was.

The PDs are hard to read, since they punched well above their weight in 2002. If a constituency by constituency analysis from local journos on Rodney Rice’s Saturday View gave them just two seats. They may have cause to regret that velvet coup d’etat in which Mary Harney was displaced by Michael McDowell last summer. Though some may be hoping they get pulled in in the slip stream of the major government partners, it’s looking a tough call.

  • smcgiff

    Was this the polling company that gave FF 50% of the vote for the last General Election, If so we could take anything up to 9% off the 41%.

  • protorious

    smc,

    I think the 50% overshot poll was done by Millward Brown IMS (who have just done that poll about support for SF in the Southern government).

    This one is done by TNS mrbi, which is usually a bit hard on FF if I remember the last round of polls correctly…

  • Mary

    PDs 1 per cent (down one point)

    PDs do not run in all constituencies so their figures can be quite skewed.

  • Brian Boru

    Mick you are only quoting the unadjusted figures. The full results are:

    FF: 41%
    FG: 27%
    Lab: 10%
    PD: 2%
    SF: 9%
    Green: 6%
    Others: 5%

    Now, closer analysis of the poll shows PDs at 3% in Connaught-Ulster. This would make holding Galway West at least a possibility. But remember one thing – the last TNS-MRBI poll in 2002 also had the PDs on 2% and they got 4%. Even on 2%, the party-vote is almost exclusively concentrated in a few constituencies, and as such it tells us little about how many seats the party will win. 2% might get the party 2 TDs but it could also get them 4. The Greens in 2002 scored only 3.65% but won 6 seats. Personally as a PD voter, I expect the party to lose seats but to survive under a Liz O’Donnell leadership which would be far more popular and have broader appeal than McDowell.

  • IJP

    Brian‘s analysis seems spot on to me – any party that can lose votes while doubling representation obviously knows how to target.

    But at this stage I really so suggest we simply wait to see what happens when the votes are counted.

  • prolefodder

    The most interesting findings of the poll are in relation to the smaller parties – the PDs (even if their targetting policy works) are on course to lose seats. For example, against Brian Boru’s posting, in Galway it looks as if the Greens Niall O Brolchain will take the seat from Noel Grealish according to RTE – http://www.rte.ie/news/elections2007/Galway-West.html). However, like Alliance here in norn iron, the PDs are past masters at vote maximising. Depending on how badly they do, we’re probably looking at a leadership challenge to McDowell (who’s lost his seat twice before in Dublin South -East).

  • dodrade

    5% seems a bit high to me, I didn’t watch the debate but coverage afterward said Bertie did well not not that well.

    Labour dropping 3% also seems a bit steep, I think its a rogue poll, but we’ll know soon enough.

  • Brian Boru

    IMS on Sunday had the PDs on 3%. You have to remember the margin-of-error.