Fine Gael rises and Labour falls in latest Sunday Times poll…

Via World by Storm (since I’m too tight to take out even a daily sub on the Sunday Times) that poll at the weekend. General election results in brackets.

Fine Gael 44% (36)
Fianna Fail 15% (17)
Sinn Fein 13% (10)
Labour 12% (19)
Greens 2% (2)
IND/others 12% (15)

Interestingly the biggest change is on the government side with Fine Gael benefiting from what WbS refers to as a mudguard effect. I’d quibble somewhat with that, in that it’s probably more to do with the way the two parties segmented the electorate with FG taking the private sector and Labour the public.

Having Brendan Howlin in charge of cuts in the new post of Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform is less a mudguard for Fine Gael, and more forcing the poacher to eat his own poison. It’s not a strong move for Labour in the short term at least.

And it’s one that both Fine Gael (and to a lesser extent Sinn Fein -up three points from the election) are benefiting from. Labour face the same problem as the Greens, in that a poll lapse now may not matter by the time of the next election, if they can demonstrate public progress over the whole term.

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  • Neville Bagnall

    The biggest problem with the poll is that it is the first B&A poll, so there is no track record or comparator available.

    Given that previous post election polls did not show a significant drop in Labour support, its hard to see what has occurred recently to drive voters from Labour to FG.

    Its possible that there has been some Lab->ULA and IND->FG movement though.

    The polling companies badly need to start polling the ULA separately.

  • keano10

    Pretty decent poll in respect of Sinn Fein. They seem to be making their prescence felt with the increased number of TD’s this time around.

  • michael-mcivor

    The weakest link in a coalitition goverment always seems to lose the most come election time- Fine Gael go forward
    whilst labour slides back- the liberal democrates looks set to get most of the slaps from the english people at the next elections- not the torys-

    And the weakest link at the executive- well that is the s.d.l.p
    job- and they do it very well- and they tell us that jobs are held of them-

  • Like all progressive parties who get into bed with reaction, the ILP is being punished, after all it was not as if the leadership cretins who believe in power at any price, were not forewarned, with the example of the Irish Greens or the Lib Dems in the UK.

    Having sided with Capital at a time when it is trashing Labour’s support base, they deserve all the hatred and contempt which is coming their way.

  • Mick Fealty

    Keano, agreed. Modest but significant progress for a team the country as yet barely knows.

  • keano10

    Yes it’s a decent poll and it’s worth remembering that at the last election an overall percentage increase of a few points resulted in 9 extra TD’s for Sinn Fein. If this percentage were to be replicated at the next election it would result in another significant increase in the party’s representation in the Dail.

    It’s still a bit surreal to see a poll that has SF just 2 percentage points behind Fianna Fail. It just brings home the scale of the change that occurred at the last election. It’s still unclear in policy terms, how FF plan to get themselves out of this. In fact, once the trust of the voting lost has been lost on such a monumental scale, one wonders if they can ever return to the heights that they once held for a generation and more.

  • Neville Bagnall

    The Labour/SF dynamic will be dependent on local circumstances and vote transfer patterns more than anything. Incumbency matters too IF the Labour TDs are willing to do the work on the ground and take the hits at the door.

    The SF vote is still fairly uneven, so they would need some strong new candidates, but the Labour vote is soft on the right and will be undermined on the left by governance.