Sinn Fein’s support in the South now mirroring Northern electoral result.

The latest Millward Brown poll for the Sunday Independent was released yesterday and it shows that Sinn Fein are Ireland’s most popular party on 26% to Fine Gaels 25%. Fianna Fail are on 19%, Labour on 6% and the Independents are on 23%.

In terms of seats the NUIM academic gives the figures as follows

This poll is interesting as it now shows Sinn Fein support in the South (at the moment anyway) mirroring its electoral performance in Northern Ireland. If this result were actually repeated in a general election the combined Sinn Fein parliamentary party would rise from 55 members to around 90.

The trend is now with  party as they go into the next election with a larger council base to help them deliver critical seats into the Sinn Fein column at the next election.

Can the Sinn Fein surge hold?

David McCann holds a PhD in North-South relations from University of Ulster. You can follow him on twitter @dmcbfs

  • chrisjones2

    It depends now how far FG and FF go to expose the huge gaps in their policies and the utter effrontery of the lies like ‘no water charges in the north’

    But if the Irish people are stupid enough to elect them that is a matter for them. Like the Greeks, one way or another, down the road they will pay the bill

  • Reader

    David McCann: …mirroring its electoral performance in Northern Ireland.
    Not really a useful comparison. SF has 2/3 of the nationalist vote in NI, and is not doing nearly so well in the south. Different limiting factors apply north and south, surely?

  • hugh mccloy

    To be exact SF in the North have 25% of those who voted, but only 12% of the population , was this post to be a neutral one ?

  • I’m interested to see whether Sinn Féin’s support will ever hit the early 30 percentages in the opinion polls. It’d be quite a significant breakthrough. Snatching some support from the other leftists parties and left-wing independents could possibly make this happen.

  • Redstar2014

    No time for SF at all myself but Chris get real- what party DOES NOT have huge gaps in their policies and doesn’t lie to the electorate !!!

  • aber1991

    In Northern Ireland, Sinn Fein support is not restricted to Nationalist votes. Their support also comes from Catholics – who are reacting to Protestant aggression. If there were no anti-Catholic aggression in Northern Ireland, Sinn Fein would get much less support – probably far less that it gets in elections in Eire.

  • Paddy Reilly

    Sinn Féin will become ever more popular for as long as it stays out of government. When it does give into this temptation, especially if it goes into coalition, it will wither away. The career of the Rev Ian Paisley Deceased was on this wise: always popular when out of office, hated when he became 1st Minister.

  • Jag

    This is a Millward Browne Lansdowne poll, and remember at the height of the Mairia Cahill episode last year, and after weeks of intensive criticism from the Sunday Independent, Sinn Fein also polled with MBL at 26%, making it, back then, the biggest party in the South. Sinn Fein’s detractors looked to the Heavens and wondered what it would take to de-rail its ascent. SF then fell back dramatically in the next MBL poll in December, but for no apparent reason.

    Personally, I just don’t believe this poll is reflective of reality, the decline in Independents/Others to 24% from 33% is statistically significant. However. again MBL has been an outlier with the lowest and highest poll numbers for Independents/Others – other polling organisations have been fairly consistent at 27-30% since the third quarter of 2014.

    I think SF is, in reality, at around 20%, the only reason I can see for a bounce now is SF’s proximity to Syriza’s position in Greece which is hogging headlines. I just have difficulty with MBL polls though, and to me, they appear unusually volatile.

    Paddy Power thinks SF will have around 28 seats after 2016 (in a Dail which will have 10 less TDs overall), up from 14 at present but PP doesn’t think much of SF’s prospects for being in government in 2016 giving it just a 5/1 outside chance, and that is in context of coalition with FF.

    All of the polls seem to show some stabilisation in the government’s polling, but they’re still around 30-34%, which suggests, they’ll be toast in 2016. The betting remains that the next government will be a FG/FF/Others coalition.

  • chrisjones2

    Yes…but SF seem to lie bettre and more often than most

  • chrisjones2

    Thats why it keeps stoking it on issues like flags and parades then? To keep the sheep scared

  • chrisjones2

    In office he was only hated by those within his party who aspired to replace him

  • Paddy Reilly

    No, he was hated by all those who saw the GFA as an act of treachery.

  • the keep

    Paddy spot on in the end Paisley proved what he was about in the end pity some of us had to wait so long to be proved right

  • Paddy Reilly

    For this, I do not blame him. My theory is that sometime during the peace negotiations when Paisley was proving particularly obdurate, the British Government produced a file with surveillance data from all the
    criminal acts he had been involved in over the decades, ranging from public order offences through criminal conspiracy to arms smuggling, with the number of years of the expected sentence crayoned in red, and made him an offer he could not refuse:-

    “So, how would you like to be 1st Minister?”

  • Catcher in the Rye

    You’re saying that the British government prevented Paisley from being prosecuted even though there was evidence to do so. Why didn’t they do it in 1978 or 1985 ?

    And if the British are able to prevent prosecutions from going ahead why didn’t they stop the trial of Lee Clegg ?

  • Gingray

    Could it also be that their voters don’t really like parades from sectarian organisations through their areas? Same goes for the flag, Belfast votes in more irish nationalist members that unionist, it was triumphalism to have it fly every day, especially when they don’t do it in Britain!

  • sean treacy

    Aye Hugh and what percentage of either voters or population did you garner in your many failed attempts to get elected to anything.When I was ticking the oul docket to send SF romping in in their droves in Mid Ulster and Magherafelt ,I always seemed to notice your name lurking there somewhere.Come results day however you were always in lost deposit,Official monster raving loony territory!

  • tmitch57

    Back in the old clunky sci-fi movies of the 1950s and 1960s the countries of Earth would finally always unite to defend against an alien invasion. Consider Sinn Fein to be the aliens in this scenario. If absolutely necessary FF and FG will unite in a coalition government to keep the Shinners out.

  • Paddy Reilly

    Lee Clegg’s actions were a little too public, too sanguinary and his own comrades reported him. My theory–and I stress it is only a theory–is that Paisley’s involvement in some of the more serious stuff was kept secret in anticipation of such a circumstance as this. However, Paisley’s public order activities are well known, and there is a wide variety of incitement charges that a government can bring against somebody they don’t like. Both Paisley and Bernadette Devlin were jailed back in the 70s on this count, but the governments realised that this didn’t do any good.

    However the possible charges that could have been brought against him by 1998 would have carried sentences longer than his anticipated life-span. Whatever the case, Paisley performed a remarkable volte-face to enable the deal to be signed.

    For that matter the present incumbent of the office could still have outstanding matters raised against him in relation to his daft incursion into Clontibret and other risible stunts, and the 2nd Minister would hardly be immune to prosecution if the British Government so desired.

    So it seems that the prime criterion for high office in the Northern Irish executive is that you are blackmailable by the British Government.

  • MainlandUlsterman

    I hope this is a wake-up call to voters in the Republic. They seem to be in danger of sleep-walking their country into national shame

  • MainlandUlsterman

    there is no excuse for what SF have done and stand for

  • Mister_Joe

    I wouldn’t get too excited over an opinion poll unless there was only a week to go to an election and, even then, I wouldn’t hold my breath.

  • sean treacy

    Aye John but I’m not talkin sh==e about others ONLY gettin 25% and then turnin up to lobby them at every turn round.

  • aber1991

    Please leave judgement on that matter to the victims of the Prods.

  • MainlandUlsterman

    so “the victims of the Prods” are allowed to justify IRA terrorism then? If so, are you applying that to “victims of the Catholics” too?

    Sounds like you want a shooting and bombing free-for-all there, aber1991 … may I ask, why?

  • banana man

    and next month they’ll be down 5 points, why does anyone bother with opinion polls so far from an election?

  • aber1991

    There are no victims of Catholics. It is the Prods who are the tyrants.

  • MainlandUlsterman

    I think there are thousands of bereaved people who might find that a bit hard to believe, aber1991. And everyone else.

  • Bridget O Donnell

    You are not comparing like with like

  • Bridget O Donnell

    National redemption you mean. The shame is partition.

  • MainlandUlsterman

    What, you want them to turn away from the peace process? Or what do you mean about the “shame” of partition? Not sure I follow.

  • Bridget O Donnell

    Its clear what I said. The shame of partition.

  • MainlandUlsterman

    but my question was, what “shame”? Didn’t we all agree in 1998 that partition is legitimate? “Shame” is quite a strong word for something everyone agrees is OK.

  • Bridget O Donnell

    Where do you seeing yourself living when Ireland is united ‘fleg’ warrior?

  • MainlandUlsterman

    Either Burkina Faso or inside the pancreas of Mitchell McLaughlin. Or possibly Ballynure.

  • Paddy Reilly

    Two bredder as doffered as nors in soun. (James Joyce, Finnegans Wake)

  • Bridget O Donnell

    Your compatriots in Algeria went to the south of their
    homeland on their return. Probably chasing the sun. I hear Beanntraí is
    very pleasant around Lúnasa but
    you will probably prefer Hastings no doubt. Remember failing to plan is
    planning to fail.

  • MainlandUlsterman

    Français, moi? Alors …
    On peut voir maintenant l’avenir que vous nous offerez – ce n’est pas l’amitié, c’est l’expulsion.
    Est-ce que c’est la rêve du nationalisme irlandais? Inspirante.

  • MainlandUlsterman

    Might there also have been a calculation that prosecuting Paisley would only strengthen him politically? That’s assuming a government could influence the DPP to do so anyway – it’s not really a government decision to take.