Effects of #Brexit are likely to challenge every single party in Britain, bar the Tories…

Now, take this British Election Survey with a modicum of salt. Particularly the visual graphics which, if you read them too directly, can be misleading. It’s complex, but the detail tells an interesting story.

This is the tenth wave of a big survey with massive sample sizes that go way beyond the average polls. According to the notes:

7,351 respondents took all of the first 10 waves of the survey, 24.3% of respondents who originally took wave 1. Wave 10 was conducted by YouGov between 24th November 2016 and 12th December.

I’ve not been able to get at the detail. There’s an awful lot of it and I have neither the necessary software nor a smart enough computer to render it properly. But here are some of the highlights:

  • Only 56% of Remainers and 56% of Leavers said they would vote for the same party as they voted for in 2015. Remain is more fragmented than Leave, where the Conservatives have the largest chunk of the vote.
  • There’s a large number of undecided voters – the “don’t knows” constitute the third largest “party” for both Remain and Leave voters.
  • Many UKIP voters have defected to the Conservatives. Since leaving Europe is now official Conservative party policy, some voters may being seeing less of a need for a separate party.
  • 2015 Labour voters have been defecting in high numbers. While Labour Leave supporters have been more likely to leave Labour than Remain supporters, they also started with more Remain voters. They are losing similar numbers from Remain and Leave.
  • Liberal Democrat revival from Remain voters was fairly small at the time of wave 10:  only 10% Labour Remain voters and 8% of Conservative Remain voters had defected to the Liberal Democrats.
  • There are indications that the SNP vote may be splitting along EU referendum lines. They only managed to retain 55% of their 2015 voters who supported Leave compared with 83% of their voters who supported Remain.

Remember two things: this survey, huge as it may be, was completed before Christmas; and two, note the enormous size of the Don’t Knows. Still, interesting times ahead. “Perfidious Albion” appears to be converging disparate minds upon a single course of action.

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  • Nevin

    Here’s a little more detail from the BES site. I wonder if some of the apparently growing volatility can be put down to the changing nature of how we receive our political information ie the ‘democratisation’ of information created by the internet age. Will polling require much larger samples to improve political forecasting?


  • Jim M

    This is going to be a terrifying but fascinating election…

  • ulidian

    Looks pretty straightforward actually. Massive swing from UKIP to Tory means big majority for May, unless Tory Remainers desert her in major numbers – can’t see this happening.

  • SleepyD

    You mean the French election Jim, cos’ the U.K. election is a foregone conclusion and NI one (or three, if your counting) is an irrelevance. The next big thing in the UK is indiref#2, but the French result could sink that as it could be catastrophic for what’s left of the EU.
    May you live in interesting times….Chinese curse, as opposed to proverb.

  • Kevin Breslin

    Au contraire Monsieur Fleatly, if the Conservatives are charged with negotiating the terms for Brexit they could pretty much make Black Wednesday look like a regular boring Ash Wednesday.

    The optics will change when the party is forced to act.

  • hgreen

    The electorate are being duped in this election to think it’s about Brexit. It’s not about Brexit. The decision has been made. The deal we get will be what the other EU nations decide.

    This is classic shock doctrine stuff. The Tories are using the Brexit crisis to get a larger majority so they can push through their attacks on the NHS, Education and social security.

  • mickfealty

    There has been some shockingly shallow reporting of British politics in Ireland (much of it wishful thinking). For instance, this wasn’t supposed to happen:


  • mickfealty

    In the meantime….?

    (BTW, Fealty is French origin, I doubt any French man would insert an ‘l’ where you have.)

  • mickfealty

    Hope you’re getting off the keyboard for a bit and knocking some doors after berating us Corbyn-sceptical folks Hugh? ?

  • hgreen

    Living in Norn Iron sadly I don’t get the chance.
    I get why people are Corbyn sceptical but what I don’t get is why they think issues with the Labour leader are so big that they’d vote against their self interest.

  • Gopher

    No surprise there even the Scottish are displaying common sense

  • mickfealty

    Perhaps because they’re confused about what their own interests are in this election. Corbyn should be an asset to the party internally, because he inspires so many good folks.

    But he’s like Marmite to those outside the party where his public approval rates are historically low. If you believe in him and his sincerity it won’t matter to you.

    But I suspect the party at large has spent too much time only talking to itself (often shouting loudly) and not enough relating to its voters.

  • mickfealty

    Way off the script Fintan and others have been selling.

  • aquifer

    So can parties make a distinctive offer to capture votes? Like ‘Blocking Brexit’ ?

    Households bringing in less than £35k will be better off voting X?

    Or £350m a day extra for the NHS? Why does the devil get the best lines?

  • Kevin Breslin

    Well Mr Fealty, I blame my autocorrect … Fleatly is some sort of weird adverb that has worked into it.

  • mickfealty

    Because the ‘saints’ backed off grubby retail politics a long long time ago.

  • Nevin

    Just a brief aside. Might the Fealty/Fielty surname in Donegal records derive from this Donegal name: Mac Fithcheallaigh?

  • eamoncorbett

    There’s talk of a 100 seat majority, but as we’ve seen before the bigger the majority the bigger the differences. There will be many diverse voices in this new dispensation and whilst most will concur with broader Tory thinking , many will not . There should be quite a few ex ukippers in this new administration and they’re unlikely to change their spots if there’s a soft Brexit .
    On June 9th its likely Theresa will be beaming on the plinth of no.10 , 2 or 3 years from now her facial expression could be quite different.

  • Nevin

    I’ve received three emails from the Labour. Party; the first two were from Jeremy and John. The party website doesn’t recognise my postcode. I’ve pointed this out but the cheeky sods ignore my comment and ask me to bail the party out!

    Don’t know about goodness but the duo hitched their wagons to some very bad folks here.

  • mickfealty

    It might. Everyone I’ve meet with this spelling originates from a single clachan at the tip of the Fanad peninsula. But it probably only dates from the late 18C as a distinct English surname.