How Much Does Scotland Care About Brexit?

Scotland voted very differently from the rest of Britain in the EU referendum: 62% of Scottish voters supported Remain compared with 48% across the UK as a whole. The result north of the border chimed with the avowedly pro-European stance adopted by the Scottish government throughout the referendum campaign, and suggested that the Scottish electorate […]

Time For Some Rethinking in Scotland’s Brexit Debate?

Brexit has added some new twists to the debate about Scotland’s constitutional status. The most obvious of these is that it led the Scottish Parliament in March 2017 to request the authority needed to hold another independence referendum, only for the First Minister to put the idea back on hold in June after losing 21 […]

How Much Difficulty Are The SNP In?

So just how much difficulty are the SNP in as they gather in Glasgow for their autumn conference?  Are they, as some reporting seems to suggest, fatally wounded in the wake of the setback that the party suffered in the UK general election in June? Or does the party simply need to bide its time […]

The Three Characteristics of the Scottish Conservative Revival

The revival of the Conservative party in Scotland during the last two years has been regarded by many as remarkable. This, perhaps, is hardly surprising. After all, in the nine UK and Scottish Parliamentary elections held between 1997 and 2015, the party had consistently flatlined at around 16-17%  – and indeed in 2011 and 2015 […]

Raising An Anniversary Glass?

How should a poll be reported when it finds that around half agree with something while half do not? Does it mean the glass is half full or half empty? Does the answer, perhaps, simply depend on your political perspective? Last week marked the twentieth anniversary of the 1997 devolution referendum in which voters in […]

The Labour Surge Washes Over Hadrian’s Wall

North of the border the election was meant to be a battle between a nationalist movement that was on the defensive and a Conservative party that was seeking to cement its newly acquired position as the principal voice of unionism in Scotland. Labour, meanwhile, was to be consigned to the margins of Scottish politics. However, […]

A Very Different Election?

A poll from YouGov for The Times, whose results first started to emerge on Friday and the final instalment of which is published today, is the first Scottish poll to have been conducted since the week the UK general election was announced. It suggests that, so far at least, the sound and fury of the […]

The First Full Week of Election Polling

There have been various bits and pieces of polling published during the first full week of campaigning since Theresa May announced a snap general election to take place on June 8. Most important was a new poll from YouGov for The Times which provided us with another reading of Westminster vote intentions. in Scotland. Most […]

A Tory Revival – And A Yet More Polarised Scotland?

Theresa May’s decision on Tuesday to seek Commons approval for an early UK general election means that the strength of her party’s revival north of the border will not only be tested in the local council elections on 4 May, but also in a Westminster ballot five weeks later. Two polls of vote intentions for […]

What Do Voters in Scotland Want from Brexit?

Scotland voted very differently from the rest of Britain in the EU referendum. It backed the view of the SNP and the Scottish Government that the UK should remain in the EU by no less than 62% to 38%, whereas the UK as a whole voted by 52% to 48% in favour of leaving. In […]

Polls Swing High, Polls Swing Low

One indication of the dominance of the SNP in the Scottish political firmament these days is that, in what currently is otherwise a climate of relatively infrequent political polling north of the border, no less than four polls have been published during the run-up to the nationalists’ spring conference in Aberdeen this weekend. Two of […]

Did Ms Sturgeon’s Call for IndyRef2 Come in the Wake of a Swing to Yes?

The First Minister’s dramatic announcement on Monday that she would now seek the authority to hold a second independence referendum in either autumn 2018 or spring 2019 was preceded by two new polls of referendum voting intentions. The first came from Ipsos MORI for STV News last Thursday, the second from BMG Research in The […]

Does Scotland Want a Second Independence Referendum?

The Prime Minister comes north tomorrow to address Scottish Conservatives at their spring conference. She does so on the back of reports that the UK government is beginning to get concerned that Nicola Sturgeon might opt to pull the trigger on a second referendum, an expectation since heightened by a speech by the First Minister […]

On Sampling Error

Much excitement was caused this week by a poll from BMG Research for The Herald which was reported by the newspaper under the headline ‘Support for independence surges on hard Brexit vow’. There was then even more of a flutter when in an interview for UK Business Insider I suggested that the three-point increase in […]

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