Last astonishing Scottish Poll

STV report an incredible set of figures in the last pre-election poll:

“The poll, conducted for STV News and likely to be the last before polling day, shows the Nationalists gaining enough of the vote for 61 seats, 14 more than they had in the last parliamentary session.
Meanwhile, the poll indicates a major slump in support for Scottish Labour, with Iain Gray’s party taking a total of 33 seats.”

Can this type of outcome really happen? (The poll asked 1063 people – which is quite enough statistically…)

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  • Avon Barksdale

    No great surprise here. There is no great appetite for separatism in scotland and simply the SNP has not made a bollocks of being a minority government. Labour in the West of Scotland is a deeply and unashamedly sectarian party and many people – of a pro-union hue but happily Scottish – have been looking for a reasonable alternative for years. The SNP has proved to be less of a threat than was envisaged so they’ll be given another opportunity and in time will become the “national” party of Scotland rather than a nationalist pressure group.

  • IJP

    I think 60+ seats to 35- would be a great surprise, actually!

    The poll seems a bit of an outlier, with Labour support significantly lower than I would expect, and all other parties’ share higher (including Conservative and LibDem).

    But we shall see!

  • Avon Barksdale

    All the SNP needs to do to achieve this is make some inroads into West Central Scotland/Ayrshire/Lanarkshire and it can do major damage to Labour. As far as I can see Slamond & co have done little to scare that particular electorate.

  • Seandoc

    “Labour in the West of Scotland is a deeply and unashamedly sectarian party”

    Excuse my ignorance of the dynamics of scottish politics but how are they sectarian?
    I presume they are seen as a Catholic party in the west of Scotland?
    If so where do the votes of the working class Rangers supporters go.?
    Surely the union flag waving ibrox crowd can’t be the SNP’s core vote?

  • Avon Barksdale

    The bulk of the working class Rangers votes probably still go largely to Labour and obviously wouldn’t be instinctively pro-SNP. But it isn’t as simple as your question suggests. The corruption, cronyism and sectarian employment practices of Labour in local government isn’t ven hidden in Glasgow and Lanarkshire and it’s becoming increasingly clear that the SNP is 1. Capable of reasonably competent government and 2. Understands it has no chance of successfully pushing the separatist agenda. Look at where the SNP gained its seats in the north and east – virtually all ex-Tory strongholds. That started as a protest vote but settled to be a fairly stable SNP vote. Unionists in the west are coming to realise that the SNP isn’t a big threat and provides a practical alternative to the discredited old guard. The SNP has never (the odd bye election apart) had a serious go at the west. It doesn’t need to gain a lot there to hurt Labour very badly. That’s what I think will happen.

  • Taoiseach

    Avaon, I think you should withdraw the ludicrous suggestion that Labour is a “deeply and unashamedly sectarian party”. They may attract more Catholic voters – that hardly makes them sectarian.

  • JoeBryce

    I do think it would be just silly to suggest that Scottish Labour was sectarian in the Irish sense. Indeed, the Scottish Labour Party can take considerable pride in the role it has played in bringing people together so that the awful divide that exists in Irish politics simply has no purchase in Scotland.

    Scottish Labour’s problems are rather like those of the old Unionist Party in Stormont, or Fianna Fail in more recent years; incumbency. Eventually, once a party has been in power too long, it becomes complacent and a culture of gombeenism or Tamany Hall creeps in. Add that to the facts that the SNP is now seen as a viable alternative, and the huge almost universal public anger at Labour’s role in the credit crunch, and Labour is set to fall as FF has just done.

    I have been a lifelong Labour voter (UUP when in NI) but I feel no alarm at the imminent prospect of an enhanced SNP government. Indeed, I see a real upside, because a more autonomous Scotland will want close relations with the whole of Ireland, and that may create or help create a context in which we all work together.

    Personally, I think Belfast and Glasgow should unite against Dublin and Edinburgh; but those are my neuroses!

  • AGlassOfHine

    Turning up at the Scottish Parliament in a celtic top,can hardly be construed as building bridges.

    The Scottish Labour Party are about to get a very bloody nose,and their openly sectarian behaviour is the main reason why !!

  • john

    Sectarian are they – lets look at the figures. Catholic population in Scotland 16%, Irish catholic population in scotland – even smaller and yet Labour has 35% of the seats in the parliament – lads your figures dont add up so stop talking nonsense. Scottish Labour Party draw their support from across the whole population, race sex and religon are not an issue

  • Avon Barksdale

    John I haven’t offered any figures but if you want to use figures on Labour’s sectarianism you should ask for NI-style fair employment legislation to be introduced in Scotland and you would see exactly how the Scottish Labour Party serves the broader community. It is institutionally sectarian and corrupt. That’s not even contested in its ever dwindling number of core areas.

  • AGlassOfHine

    John,setarian are they ? Yes !!

  • Avon Barksdale

    Looks like I was right.