Nancy Platts is still fighting in Brighton Pavilion, but the new poll giving her a 10% lead is misleading

There is some confusion about a poll commissioned by the Brighton Argus that suggests Labour is 14% ahead of the Greens and 10% ahead of the Conservatives.  This contrasts with a poll published in December that put the Greens well ahead of the Conservices with Labour further behind.  19% say they are yet to make up their mind, enough to swing the election to any of the three candidates.

This poll will no doubt give the Labour candidate, Nancy Platts, a huge boost.  She has another reason to be optimistic – the strong performance of Labour in recent weeks.  Today’s speech by Gordon Brown was powerful and convincing, and comes a few days after his performance on the Piers Morgan programme which I understand (although didn’t see it myself) was compelling viewing and showed the real GB in a very favourable light.

The Green candidate, Caroline Lucas will, no doubt, dismiss the poll, and with some justification.  The question asked “Which party would you vote for if there was a general election tomorrow” disadvantages the minor parties.  In reponding to such a question, those who are yet to understand the particular situation in Brighton Pavilion as a three way marginal, will consider just the three main parties.  As election day approaches, and as the viability of the Green campaign is better established, voting Green will become a greater reality.

Charlotte Vere, the Conservative candidate, will probably ignore the poll.  Opinion polls always underestimate the strength of the Conservatives.  There is still an embarassment factor amongst former Labour voters who might be considering a Tory vote.  She will no doubt continue to do what she excels at, being a one woman tornado in Brighton Pavilion, and she will receive a boost next weekend with the Conservative Spring Conference coming to town.

It is the view of this blog that the earlier poll is more dependable.  Caroline Lucas maintains momentum and, with a better showing from her supporters and local Green councillors, she should still poll well.  However, don’t underestimate Nancy Platts.  She has a strong local presence and is engaging.  Mycomments made previously that she is the right candidate, wrong party may yet prove to be wrong, as Labour and Gordon Brown strengthen their poll rating.  Faced with a stark choice between David Cameron and Gordon Brown, the voters may yet throw a lifeline to Nancy Platts.

4 Responses

  1. Hi BPB,

    I was keenly waiting your take on this development.

    I think Anthony Wells at UK Polling Report has the best analysis on the Argus/Kimble poll. It’s a very strange poll, not correctly waited and should not be seen as a credible reflection on the reality of what is going on in Brighton Pavilion.

    The sample for this is tiny, very small, only 336 peopled were interviewed in Pavilion, 37% of those asked gave no indication to whom they would vote for, thus making the sample size even smaller and the margin of error that much bigger.

    Kimble Research is not a member of the British Polling Council and does not comply with their standards.

    My worry is that this will feature on election material and is incredibly misleading to voters. The data does not correspond with any previous polling data. This is ambarassing for the Argus as they neglected to mention that they commissioned the research. I expect other respected pollsters, not just Anthony Wells, to fully scrutinise this poll and come to the same conclusion as Anthony, that this poll is not to be trusted and we should put our fait in December’s ICM poll and not this rogue one.

    As always, it was interesting to read your take on this.



  2. […] the use of graphs by every party but the Green Party. Methinks the lady doth protest too much. The Brighton Politics Blogger's take is […]

  3. I note that Labour are on a falling % trend: 55, 49, 35 in the last 3 GEs, that the Cons are pretty steady around 25% for the last 3 elections, and the Greens are on a rising trend: 23, 13,22% for those elections.

    Pity that the LibDems are standing. Their trend is 9.5,9.16. No chance of victory, but if the Conservative wins, it will be thanks to the LibDem taking votes from the Greens.

    We desperately need electoral reform in this backward country. The LibDems want electoral reform, but the irony is that Brighton Pavilion LibDems may be the ones who tip the balance in favour of the Conservatives, the one party who is perfectly satisfies with the dysfunctional and non-democratic FPTP system.

  4. Another FIVE years of Gordon Brown would be the most depressing election result in history. They are trying to spook people with fear and lies (Have you seen the lies on Nancy —— [edited by BPB] literature?). Labour have destroyed Britain’s finances for a generation and blamed America, Bankers etc, All typical Labour spin. Gordon Brown de-regulated the banks, and over-borrowed during a boom, he caused the meltdown then took credit for preventing it, using OUR money. The debt tap has been left running to postpone the huge cuts until after the election. It’s all about power crazy, Brown while the country burns. Ex-Labour voter who will be voting Tory. Vote Blue or you get Brown! Any other vote is a waste.

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