Moon Elections & Polling Round-Up

Moon Polling & Elections

WAP

LOCAL BY ELECTIONS

There were four by elections this week in different parts of the country but both created by the deaths of councillors who served at district and county level. All were Conservative defences and they held all four seats, however the result pattern were very different. Two of the by elections were in the Wyre area of Lancashire in the constituency of Cat Smith who is MP for Lancaster & Fleetwood. Although the Tories held both seats there were heavy swings towards the Labour Party who will be much the happier with both results

In stark contrast were the by elections in the Thanet area of Kent. Not only did the Tories hold both but saw their vote go up, in one case by over 23%. Some of this will be due to UKIP not standing in the district seat however the Tories had a swing in their favour against Labour in the county seat where UKIP did stand. The Kent results were much more impressive for the Conservatives.

There is little change on the projected share this week, the Tories lead over Labour nudges up slightly to 3.4% from 3.3% last week as the good result for both sides even themselves out. All the current polling and election projected share numbers can be found here

YOUGOV POLL

YouGov released the first Westminster voting intention poll this week. It recorded a 1% lead for Labour, slightly down from 2% in their last one before Christmas. Labour’s average poll lead is currently 1.7% and this one does not change the narrative of the two sides in general stalemate. The breakdown suggests Labour improvement in Scotland and better performance in the North of England is the reasons they are currently ahead. The Lib Dems edged up to 9% in this poll, something they will hope becomes a trend rather than a one off. The poll also gave Theresa May a 6% lead over Jeremy Corbyn as best PM, the same as their last poll.

All the current polling numbers can be found here

2ND EU REFERENDUM POLLING

Communicate Research released polling on support for a 2nd EU Referendum in the light of Nigel Farage’s suggestion that it may happen after all. The poll showed an 8% lead against having a 2nd Referendum 43% for and 51% against. YouGov found a similar result when it asked a similar question in November. The poll also asked the remain-leave question which came out 52% to 48% in favor of remain. The relevance of this while there is a majority against holding one anyway is dubious. Also remember many polls had a similar remain lead right up until the day itself and is within margin of error of the actual referendum result.

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MOON OF LIBERTY LOCAL BY ELECTION RESULTS

Wyre Rural (Lancashire)Con 1745 Lab 925 Green 237Con Hold – Swing (May 2017) Con-Lab 12%

Preesall (Wyre)Con 930 Lab 753Con Hold – Swing (May 2015) Con-Lab 9.7%

Birchington & Thanet Rural (Kent) – Con 2534 Lab 865 LD 561 UKIP 357 Green 169Con Hold – Swing (May 2017) Lab-Con 1.5%

Thanet Villages (Thanet)Con 620 LD 313 Lab 206 Green 66 Ind 52Con Hold – Swing n/a as no LD last time – Con vote up 23.6% on May 2017

WESTMINSTER VOTING INTENTION POLL

YouGovLab 41% Con 40% LD 9% UKIP 3% Green 2%Lab Lead 1%

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Moon Editorial – The politics of 2018

Blue_Moon2

Reflections of the Moon

2017 was a crazy year in politics. It began with Theresa May in total control, calling an election that looked like a landslide and ended in failure as she lost her majority and ended up relying on the DUP to stay in Number 10. She regained some control at the end of the year with a successful end to the first phase Brexit deal and the polls showing the Conservatives statistically tied with Labour, when given the upheaval, you would expect Labour to be marching miles ahead. Much of the reason they are not has to do with their leader, who despite doing better than expected in the election, is a long way still from proving he is actually electable.

So what of 2018. The pattern could follow the same as the last six months. It will be dominated by Brexit yet again. There will be gamesmanship on both sides with at times May looking very weak. Then as time moves on and the March 2019 deadline looms, we will probably end up with a deal late in the day yet again. Whatever red lines are being thrown around now, it is likely to be a Norway style transition until December 2020, followed by a permanent Canada style deal, with some details tweaked. And yes, free movement may well stay until 2020, those with a problem with that will of course squeal if it happens. The base will be that little will change in relation to the Single Market aspects of the EU, but we will leave the rest of the EU’s activities (Which don’t forget accounts for roughly 80% of EU law)

This year will also see the completion of the withdrawal bill. The likely pattern is the Lords will pass a small number of amendments, will be rejected or a compromise found to allow the Lords to back down on the rest in the end. The bill should be passed and ready to be enacted into law by March 2019. 

In May the local elections will likely give Labour something of a boost. This year’s local elections are heavily biased towards urban cities and London, where if General Election patterns are sustained, scope for some major gains for Labour are possible.At local level signs the Lib Dems are recovering are also showing in local by election results, There is scope in London for them to recover ground lost during the tuition fee row years. t could be a tough night for the Conservatives, given the terrain which the elections will be fought, coming close to holding what they have would be a success.

Elsewhere housing will likely be the biggest focus but it is an area with no easy answers. Will action match the talk? Time will tell. Michael Gove will also continue his campaign to make the Tories take more notice of animal welfare issues. This is a good thing from a Conservative point of view, the specter of a Fox Hunting vote and the suggestion of backtracking on the Ivory pledge definitely lost the Tories key votes in June. 

Overall barring some big totally unexpected event it will likely be a fairly quiet year and I expect the polling to look much the same at the end of it as it does now, with no General Election and no change of leadership. What is more exciting is to watch the development of the influx of young Tories who are leading a social media fight back. Where will they take this in 2018, hopefully even further getting more people involved still to fight the barrage of hatred and abuse and Fake News that is the hallmark of Labour’s social media machine that needs desperately to be taken on and defeated.

2018 is in some ways the start of a five year cycle that will determine a lot about the future of Britain for a long time to come. While the window for those who want to stop Brexit looks small, it being done or not will have much longer effects. Then comes the next General Election, assuming it is in 2022, who will take control of post Brexit Britain, the Conservatives or the Hard left of Corbyn’s Labour, in a world where many more powers will be available to the winner, will also have long term consequences for the country. I have little doubt Britain outside the EU with a Conservative majority Government come 1st January 2023 is the best outcome. 

 

 

 

Moon of Liberty Elections – Local by elections 03/08/2017

WAP

Local by Election Round-Up

It was a big week for Labour in this week’s local by elections. They made three gains with big vote share increases in Worthing, Margate and Swale. The reason for these big wins will also vindicate Jeremy Corbyn’s approach to Brexit as all three victories came as a result of Labour taking the bulk of the collapsing UKIP vote, or in the case of the Worthing gain against the Conservatives, taking the bulk of a large UKIP vote where the party did not stand. The evidence is leave referendum voters have been driving these victories, which follows on from the General Election where Labour took far more leave voters than many expected, a key part of why we ended up with a Hung Parliament. a dilemma for those critical of Corbyn and who want a more pro-EU line from Labour.

The Conservative did not see huge vote share drops and made a technical gain from Labour in Kings Lynne where the Labour councillor elected in second place in a multi member ward last time stood down, and the Tories who had most votes in the ward last time overall, maintained that to take the seat. The is why though there was a small swing to Labour, it was still a Conservative gain.

One trend that continues from the General election is than the two big parties remain dominant. UKIP’s collapse drove this weeks result but the Lib Dems are making no progress at all and the small Green vote collapsed where they stood this week too. The era of two party politics appears to be here to stay for the time being.

Labour’s big week sees them move in front on projected UK vote share for the first time since Corbyn became leader. They lead the Tories by 0.9% after this weeks results. All the current up to date numbers can be found on the Elections and Polling numbers page.

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MOON OF LIBERTY ELECTION RESULTS

Local by Elections 05/08/2017

Loughborough Spelthorpe (Charnwood) Lab 595 Con 591 LD 92 UKIP 29Lab HoldSwing (May 2015) Con-Lab 2.8%

Marine (Worthing)Lab 1032 Con 846 LD 246 Green 55LAB GAIN FROM CONSwing (May 2016) Con-Lab 17.1%

Margate Central (Thanet)Lab 454 Con 190 UKIP 52 LD 33 Ind 24 Green 23 Ind 13LAB GAIN FROM UKIPSwing (May 2015) UKIP-Lab 24.5%

Milton Regis (Swale)Lab 573 Con 255 UKIP 151 LD 86LAB GAIN FROM UKIPSwing (May 2015) UKIP-Lab 19.8%

Penshurst, Fordscombe & Chiddingstone (Sevenoaks)Con 438 LD 253 Lab 54Con HoldSwing (May 2015) LD-Con 2.6%

St Margarets & St Nicholas (Kings Lynne & W Norfolk) – Con 253 Lab 210 LD 173 Green 63CON GAIN FROM LABSwing (May 2015 top vote) Con-Lab 1.7%

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Moon Of Liberty Elections – Local by Elections 9th March 2017

WAP

Local by Elections

9th March Local by Election round-up

This weeks seven by Elections continued the general trends we have seen. The Tories had a very good night on the whole, their gain from Labour in Waltham Cross, Broxbourne was the third week in a row they had made a gain from Labour. Victory in Derwent in Derby shows continued strength in a marginal area of North Derby and although the gain was technically from UKIP due to this being a rolling ward that elects 3 members over 3 years, Labour won the ward in 2015 & 2016 so was as god as another victory against Labour as well.

The Lib Dems got one excellent gain from the Tories in West Oxfordshire but there was not huge progress anywhere else, once again showing the limitations to their improvement. They are still polling well enough for a 20% plus projected share though on what was a decent night for them.The story is less rosy for UKIP and Labour for whom this weeks results will heap more misery continuing the string of poor results. UKIP’s share was down everywhere, Labour’s was down everywhere except Harrow, which shows again London is performing in a more positive way for Labour than everywhere else in the country.

This week sees the Tories UK projected share lead over Labour increase to 6%. UKIP are now below 7% and the Lib Dems are down a bit but still above 20% on 20.4%. All the most recent numbers can be found here.

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MOON OF LIBERTY ELECTION SCOREBOARD

Local by Election Results – 9th March 2017

Hailey, Minster Lovell & Leafield (W Oxfordshire) LD 567 Con 504 Lab 71 UKIP 38 Green 35LD GAIN FROM CONSwing (May 2016) Con-LD 15.1%

Roxbourne (Harrow)Lab 1554 Con 533 LD 240 UKIP 148Lab HoldSwing (May 2014) Con-Lab 7.1%

Hertford Castle (East Hertfordshire) Con 593 Lab 207 LD 188 Green 154 UKIP 65Con HoldSwing (May 2015) Lab-Con 5.5%

Exton (Rutland) Con 238 LD 123 UKIP 39Con HoldSwing (May 2015) Con-LD 2.5%

Red Horse (Straford Upon Avon)Con 476 LD 266 UKIP 92 Green 58Con HoldSwing (May 2015) Con-LD 14.6%

Derwent (Derby)Con 789 Lab 611 UKIP 537 LD 192CON GAIN FROM UKIP Swing (May 2016) UKIP-Con 2.7%

Waltham Cross (Broxbourne) Con 650 Lab 646 UKIP 200 LD 89CON GAIN FROM LABSwing (May 2016) Lab-Con 5.6%

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Moon Of Liberty Polling – February Polling Update

WAP

February Polling round up – Conservatives continue to dominate

Only Survation of the regularly reporting pollsters did not report in February and we had our first poll from Communicate Research this year. On Voting Intention every poll saw the Conservatives in a double digit lead ranging from 11% with Ipsos-Mori to 18% with YouGov and ICM. All pollsters have the Conservatives on 40% or more and Labour in the twenties, showing a stronger position for Theresa May and a weaker position for Jeremy Corbyn.

The lower lead from Ipsos-Mro fed into the seat projection, only they saw the projected Tory majority just short of three figures, all the others suggest the Conservative are on course for 350 seats or more on the new boundaries, thus ensuring a majority of 100 plus. ICM’s projected majority of 176 is a new record high projection, their projection of Labour on 141 seats is also a record low since I have been doing calculations on the new boundaries.

Labour’s position is particularly bad in the North West where swings to the Tories were consistently at 10% plus.The polling provides little solace anywhere except in London where they continue to be less hit than elsewhere. The SNP remain dominant in Scotland although on average they are now below 50% and the scope for the Tories to gain some seats in Scotland is certainly there. Labour are now consistently in third place behind the Tories on the Scottish breakdowns.

For the Lib Dems there continues to be little sign of their local election improvement showing up in national polls, although they have edged up into double figures in most cases. Ipsos-Mori offers them some hope giving them 14 seats on the new boundaries. The new boundaries will make their position more difficult, with strong targeting a result of around 20 seats, while by recent standards where pre-2015 they could get 50 plus, would actually be a very good result given the nature of the new boundaries. UKIP remain ahead of the Lib Dems on vote share, but there is little sign of them making any seat breakthroughs, which was backed up by the Stoke result last week.

The Conservatives average lead over is up from 12.8% in January to 14%. The average seat projection sees the Tory majority projection up to a record high of 136. Labour fall below 160 on 157. All the current numbers can be found here. A round up of this months polls is below.

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MOON OF LIBERTY POLLING SCOREBOARD

February Polls

VOTING INTENTION

YouGov (28/02/2017) – Con 42% Lab 25% UKIP 12% LD 11% Green 4% – Con lead 17%

ICM (20/02/2017) – Con 44% Lab 26% UKIP 13% LD 8% Green 4% – Con lead 18%

Opinium (13/02/2017) – Con 40% Lab 27% UKIP 14% LD 7% Green 5% – Con lead 13%

Ipsos-Mori (18/02/2017) – Con 40% Lab 29% UKIP 8% LD 13% Green 4% – Con lead 11%

Communciate Research (11/02/2017) – Con 41% Lab 26% UKIP 11% LD 11% Green 4% – Con lead 15%

SEAT PROJECTION (Based on regional patterns)

YouGov (28/02/2017) – Con 381 Lab 143 LD 6 SNP47 Plaid Cymru 3 UKIP 1 Green 1 Northern Ireland 18

Con Majority of 162

ICM (20/02/2017) – Con 389 Lab 141 LD 8 SNP 34 Plaid Cymru 3 UKIP 1 Green 1 Northern Ireland 18

Con Majority of 176

Ipsos-Mori (18/02/2017) – Con 346 Lab 177 LD 14 SNP 40 Plaid Cymru 3 UKIP 1 Green 1 Northern Ireland 18

Con Majority of 92

Communicate Research (11/02/2017) – Con 381 Lab 143 LD 5 SNP 48 Plaid Cymru 3 UKIP 1 Green 1 Northern Ireland 18

Con Majority of 162

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Moon Of Liberty Elections on 23rdFeb 2017

WAP

By Elections 23rd February 2017

Parliamentary by Elections – Stoke & Copeland

An historic event in Copeland took place as the Conservatives gained the seat, the first time Labour have not won there since the 1930’s. It is also the first by election gain for the Government from the main opposition since Angela Rumbold took Mitcham and Morden in 1982. The 6.5% swing is in line with current polling pointing to a general election landslide for the Tories of about 120. 

In Stoke there in terms of perception was some better news for Labour who held off a challenge from UKIP. However in context the result looks different. Labour lost 2% vote share which is only the eighth parliamentary by election the main opposition has lost vote share since the Second World War. Both the UKIP and Conservative share went up, suggesting little appetite for tactical voting by Tories towards UKIP.

Had that occurred there is a real chance Labour could have lost this seat, the irony is the strength of the Conservatives right now actually saved this seat for Labour, in the longer term that is not good news. The Tories may also be quite pleased Jeremy Corbyn has a win to cling on to, as they see him staying as their key to a 2020 landslide, these by elections are a further indication they may well be right.

Local by elections

The Liberal Democrats continued their improvement in local level by elections taking two seats from the Conservatives having not stood last time. Victories in Kettering and South hams, both areas that voted leave in the Referendum, add to the evidence of the Parliamentary by elections that in standard party political contests people are not dividing their vote along Referendum vote lines. The Conservatives easily held on to Chigwell Village. The parliamentary by elections suggest while there is a Lib Dem improvement, replicating some of their spectacular local by election gains at national level, will have it’s limits. At local level however, expect the Lib Dem improvements to continue for some time to come yet.

The projected national share at local level now has the Conservative lead down to 3.4% over Labour due to primarily poor showings against the Lib Dems dragging their vote share down. All the current numbers can be found here.

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MOON OF LIBERTY ELECTION SCOREBOARD

Parliamentary by elections – 23rd Feb 2017

Stoke On Trent CentralLab 7853 UKIP 5233 Con 5154 LD 2083 Green 294 Ind 137 MRLP 127 BNP 124 CPC 109 Ind 56Lab HoldSwing Lab-UKIP 2.1%

CopelandCon 13748 Lab 11601 LD 2252 UKIP 2025 Ind 811 Green 515 Ind 116CON GAIN FROM LABSwing Lab-Con 6.7%

Local by elections – 23rd Feb 2017

Barton (Kettering)LD 644 Con 337 UKIP 106 Green 42LD GAIN FROM CON Swing n/a as no LD last time

Charterlands (South Hams) LD 474 Con 404 Lab 110 Green 40 LD GAIN FROM CONSwing n/a as no LD last time

Chigwell Village (Epping Forest) Con 453 LD 143Con HoldSwing n/a as no LD last time

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Moon Of Liberty Elections – Local By Elections round-up

WAP

Local By Elections 02/02/2017

Mixed bag of results may provide pointers to Parliamentary by elections to come

This week saw three by elections with very different scenarios all producing very different results. In East Staffordshire the Conservatives held their seat with a swing to them against Labour outperforming their General election day position in line with current opinion polls. The two by elections in Rotherham also had differing scenarios. The Dinnington ward had UKIP defending a seat against Labour which they lost. The other in the Brimsworth & Catcliffe ward was a Labour defence with UKIP in a distant second place last time. However in the same vain as we saw in a seat in Sunderland a few weeks ago, the Liberal Democrats came through from nowhere to take this seat on a huge swing

Looking ahead these trends may give some pointers to the upcoming Parliamentary by elections in Copeland and Stoke On Trent. Regarding Copeland, The result in East Staffordshire is another example of where it is a Tory verses Labour battle, in most cases the Tories have been winning. This may bode well for a Tory gain in Copeland. As for Stoke, good and bad news for Labour, clearly UKIP are struggling to make an impact which if this trend continues, suggests a UKIP gain in Stoke is unlikely, however, where Labour have the seat but UKIP are second, these are the conditions for the Liberal Democrats to take advantage. On a higher Parliamentary by election turnout this may not prove to be the case, but the warning is definitely there from both Rotherham and Sunderland before it. As ever all the caveats in translating lower turnout local contests with parliamentary by elections apply.

The current projected national share sees the Conservative lead over Labour currently 7.4% with the Lib Dems closing into just 4.2% behind Labour for second place as a result of their huge win. All the current numbers can be found here. This weeks by election numbers are below.

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MOON OF LIBERTY ELECTION SCOREBOARD

By Election Results

Local By Elections 02/02/2017

Town (East Staffs) – Con 627 Lab 359 UKIP 214Con HoldSwing (May 2015) Lab-Con 1.3%

Dinnington (Rotherham)Lab 670 UKIP 303 Con 238 Ind 232 Ind 180 Ind 81 Green 78 LD 75LAB GAIN FROM UKIPSwing (May 2016) UKIP-Lab 9.3%

Brinsworth & Catcliffe (Rotherham)LD 2000 Lab 519 UKIP 389 Con 91 Green 30LD GAIN FROM LABSwing (May 2016) Lab-LD 38.3%

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