And how does that compare with your previous polls?

Interestingly the NIO have released another of their famed surveys. This time the Northern Ireland Secretary of State, Shaun Woodward, MP, is focusing on the over-all figure – “(58%) support the devolution of policing and justice powers from Westminster to Stormont within the next 12 months.” He does also provides this handy graph indicating the levels of support across the various parties’ supporters. Actually, according to the NIO’s latest poll, support for considering a 12month time-frame for devolving policing and justice powers is above 50% among supporters of all parties.. just – 52% for UUP and 51% for DUP. The comparable figures from the previous NIO polls? It’s not clear, because they’ve chosen to change either the questions asked, or the way they’ve presented the data, or both. Adds BBC NI political editor, Mark Devenport blogs

“Strangely they didn’t (so far as I know) ask anyone where the transfer of powers sat on their list of priorities alongside, say, lower gas and electricity bills.”

Previously the percentages on whether those powers should be devolved at all were reported as

Compare the percentages above – who previously said policing and justice powers should never be devolved – with the ones presented in today’s poll who apparently said that those powers should not be devolved at all.

Total – 12%

SF – 2%

SDLP – 3%

Alliance – 9%

UUP – 14%

DUP – 23%

I’m particularly taken with the UUP drop from 36% in January 2008 to 14% now. Statistics, eh?

And the heading on today’s graph probably gives an indication of the question asked

“Timescale that should be considered for devolution of policing and justice powers from Westminster to local politicians.”

As before, this time there’s no actual figures given for how the sample breaks down by party supporters, not even a percentage. No methodology. And definitely no non-party-aligned respondents.