Behaviour and Attitudes: And then there were two..

BAN_Company_LogoCedar Lounge have the figures for tomorrow’s Behaviours and Attitudes poll in the Sunday Times:

Fine Gael 27 (+1);
Fianna Fail 23 (-1);
Lab 7 (-4);
Sinn Fein 15 (-4);
Ind 25 (+7)

So much for the grand political photon then? These figures are more like the truth of the matter. FG holding a narrow lead over FF, and SF holding a very clear lead over Labour whose world, just now, is truly falling apart.

That independent figure is high, and no doubt a signal of deepening affection from national politics.

It ought to concern all major parties, but my guess is they are discounting it as a such a disparate and inchoate a force that there is literally nothing that can be done about it.

In the short term that’s probably the right call. Only the two large parties had the capacity to saturate Meath East with party workers (so did SF, but the disproportionate number of northerners among them may not have had the desired effect).

They can always calculate on taking the largest share of the crop. In longer term though there is a sense on the ground that deputies to the national parliament are the only compensating factor for the fact that local govt barely exists.

Adrian Kavanagh’s seat calculations are always fun:

FG 55,
FF 43,
SF 19,
LAB 3,

To be consumed with extreme caution, of course. But with these score Id make that a minority FG with support from whom exactly?

Adrian was giving SF three seats last week in Louth; just two this week. Not a good week to be Labour, or indeed anywhere (but SF) on the Left in Ireland.


  • keano10

    As always Mick, you are selective in your information. You omit that Gerry Adams has by far the highest satisfaction rating of any of the party leaders (45%). Bearing in mind that he became party leader 30 years ago, some would regard that as quite an acheivement..

  • Mick Fealty

    Read back on my polling analyses and tell me when I last mentioned leaders ratings… I don rate them as anything other than mood swings. The don’t correlate to anything concrete or even comparative.

  • Mick Fealty

    That includes not mentioning them when they go down btw.

  • Interesting that you say that, Mick. The question has always puzzled me. Are people being asked to vote on the person’s qualities as a human being, or as being a good leader of their Party, irrespective of whether or not you agree with the policies of that party? And is there a difference between what the questioner is asking and what people think they are being asked?

  • I find it depressing that FF is doing so well after having so recently wrecked the economy. What is it that Irish voters think they are voting for anyways? They can’t be voting for a United Ireland when they vote for FF as it, like FF, agreed to repeal the constitutional claim to NI. So is voting just a quadrennial allegiance or identity ceremony that Irish voters go through?

  • Mick Fealty

    It’s a stand alone rating on how well people think they are doing as leader of their party. There’s a temptation to cross reference. But since Gilmore is also up when his party is down, not sure what store can by put by it.

    That said I think Adams has improved in the Dáil since Xmas…

  • Pete Baker

    “It’s a stand alone rating on how well people think they are doing as leader of their party. There’s a temptation to cross reference. But since Gilmore is also up when his party is down, not sure what store can by put by it.”

    And in the absence of evidence of actual competition for that position the ‘satisfaction’ rating is doubly meaningless.

    “Bearing in mind that he became party leader 30 years ago…”

    The last person to be touted as an alternative within Sinn Féin was Conor Murphy…

  • keano10


    Unfortunately your knowledge of SF internal discussion rarely escapes the quick cut and paste job for your usual attacks. Pearse Doherty has gained overwhelming support in the past few years with his inspirational performances in The Dail and I cannot think of a single activist who seriously ever touted Connor Murphy as party leader. Murphy always lacked the charisma to be considered for the role nor did he ever once cover it, to the best of my knowledge. For the most part it was a media concotion by media elements who tried to (unsuccesfully) unsettle Adams.

  • Little James

    “Inspirational performances” ? Jesus.

  • Pete Baker

    “For the most part it was a media concotion by media elements who tried to (unsuccesfully) unsettle Adams.”

    Actually, keano, I mostly agree with that.

    But remind us what happened to Conor again? 😉

  • keano10


    If you accept (as you say) the notion that he was never a serious contender for the leadership, then why does it matter what his future holds? It is essentially irrelevant in terms of the future leadership, which is the point which I was discussing….

  • Should Sinn Féin not be down for 22 seats instead of the 19 shown above?

  • Greenflag

    What these figures show imo is that we have in ROI a clear almost 50/50 divide between those who believe that economic recovery is possible within the present restrictions of the Eurozone (FF/FG /LAB, and those who in various guises are disaffected from the current solution but who are not ‘united ‘ on any alternative . Probably because there is’nt one .

    To that extent SF are stuck for if they have any alternative they have not clearly expressed it nor have they shown how they /Ireland (ROI) could stand alone outside the EU if that became a necessary follow through of their ‘ourselves alone ‘ historical mantra .

    Because the Independents cover such a wide spectrum of political stances they may begin to reduce in numbers post the next election . While some of them have been to the forefront in criticism of the former FF Government’s policies and the current Coalition , none amongst them has come forward as a ‘leader ‘ who could take on both main parties FG & FF to win a plurality of seats .

    Labour are ideally placed to be the main losers come the next election .Ditching Gilmore will become an option if polls continue to show these kind of numbers for Labour .

  • Mick Fealty

    ASF, Adrian is just having a bit of sport with that. Suspect FG vote Will hold, but Meath East won’t be easy to take two out of next time. FF Will bust a gut to too the poll with a second seat as a possible bonus.

    Momentum is the unfathomable factor…