So in a few days we have seen two contrasting Welsh Polls , which for the first time in what seem age seem to show a marked improvement in Plaid Cymru in ages.
Professor Roger Awan-Scully once again has bee scrunching the numbers.
When interpreting these results, in particular, it is probably worth noting some things about how the poll was conducted. First, that it was a telephone poll, and not an online survey like the Welsh Political Barometer polls carried out by YouGov. Second, the sampling for this particular poll was conducted by ICM across quite a long period of time – from 7th to 23rd February. (In contrast, the recent Barometer poll sampling occurred between 19-22 February). Given the various political events during this period, the levels of support reported for the parties may well have been affected by when people were spoken to.
Anyway, what did ICM find? First here are their results for a Westminster general election (with, for the purposes of comparison, the figures from this week’s Barometer poll alongside):
Party ICM YouGov Labour 42% 35% Conservatives 33% 29% Plaid Cymru 13% 14% Liberal Democrats 8% 6% UKIP 3% 6% Others 3% 8%
The Big story form a Welsh view point is in the Assembly polls.
Professor Roger Awan-Scully writes
Two things are immediately noticeable about these figures. The first is that ICM put Plaid Cymru in a rather better position than YouGov; this repeats the findings from last year, when – as noted here – Plaid did a bit better in polls from ICM and Sky Data than in near-contemporaneous polls from YouGov. Quite why this should be I am unsure. What we can be rather more sure about is that the 27 percent in this poll is Plaid’s highest score for the constituency ballot on any poll since an NOP poll early in the campaign for the 2003 National Assembly election.
The second important thing to note is that these figures for the National Assembly also show a significant Labour decline on the last such ICM poll a year ago. Then Labour was on 40 percent support on the constituency ballot. There seems little doubt that Labour support has fallen, even if we are unsure about the extent of the decline.
Using once again the assumption of uniform national swings from the last election, this poll projects six constituencies to change hands for the National Assembly. Plaid Cymru are projected to pick up Blaenau Gwent, Caerphilly, Cardiff West and Llanelli from Labour, and Aberconwy from the Conservatives; the Tories in turn are projected to gain the Vale of Glamorgan from Labour.
For the regional list vote, ICM found the following:
These findings also show a Labour decline since the last ICM poll twelve months ago (when Labour was on 36 percent for the list ballot), and again shows rising support for Plaid Cymru.
Party ICM YouGov Labour 32% 29% Plaid Cymru 25% 23% Conservatives 22% 24% Liberal Democrats 6% 6% UKIP 6% 6% Others 9% 12%
Allowing for the constituency results already projected, and once more assuming uniform national swings since 2016, our new poll projects the following overall results for the Assembly’s regional list seats:
North Wales: 2 Plaid, 2 Conservative
Mid & West Wales: 3 Labour, 1 Plaid
South Wales West: 2 Conservative, 2 Plaid
South Wales Central: 2 Conservative, 2 Plaid
South Wales East: 2 Conservative, 1 Plaid, 1 UKIP
Labour: 25 seats (22 constituency, 3 regional)
These figures thereby generate the following overall result for the National Assembly:
Plaid Cymru 19 seats (11 constituency, 8 regional)Conservatives: 14 seats (6 constituency, 8 regional)Liberal Democrats: 1 seat (1 constituency)UKIP: 1 seat (1 regional)It will be interesting to see how much with a rapidly changing UK scene if Plaid can seize on this and start looking like a Party on a roll and start rising even further at the moment only Ynys Mon looks like a target seat in Westminster.
So I wonder if the Party buoyed up with the apparent mini-surge actually have a serious campaign in the forthcoming by-election. in Newport West .
The by-election will take place on 4 April 2019 following the death of Paul Flynn MP. and on paper looks like a poor ground for Plaid's prospect
|Plaid Cymru||Morgan Bowler-Brown ||1,077||2.5||-1.5|
|Liberal Democrat||Sarah Lockyer||976||2.2||-1.7|
|Plaid Cymru||Simon Coopey||1,604||4.0||+1.2|
|Liberal Democrat||Ed Townsend||1,581||3.9||-12.7|
However it has always been a Labour-Tory marginal and no third party has ever really made any impact.
Clearly Plaid can't win the seat but a good third place might make all the difference .
The Liberal Democrats can't litter the constituency with their "Little Bar Graphs" showing themselves as the main challenger and the Independent Group sem unlikely to be able to organise a candidate.
This leaves Ukip who may benefit from any delay in the UK leaving the EU, but who may have a problem f we crash out on March 29th.
This leaves Plaid as a Left Pro Europe alternative . It does look like a Pipe dream
but remember in 1968 plaid came from nowhere ib Caerphilly
Result of the previous general election
|Conservative||Ronald J Maddocks||5,182||14.61||-2.28|
|Plaid Cymru||John D A Howell||3,949||11.41||+0.43|
Result of the by-election
|Plaid Cymru||Phil Williams||14,274||40.36||+29.22|
Of course Plaid start at a much lower base, but nothing is for certain and if Plaid decide to put proper resources into the by-election rather put up a Paper candidate a good third is not impossible.