Labour Still Struggling To Secure Second Place

With little more than a week and a half to go to the Scottish Parliament election (albeit with Labour remarkably still to unveil its manifesto) it seems there is nothing that can stand in the way of a second SNP overall majority. However, the battle for second place is evidently not resolved, as indeed is […]

Why is Labour’s Election Strategy Not Working?

Labour’s strategy in the Scottish Parliament election is clear. It is trying to win back those for the most part relatively left-wing former supporters who voted for independence eighteen months ago and subsequently switched to the SNP. To that end it has put forward plans for markedly higher taxation and spending than those being espoused […]

Pollster, pollster, in your crystal ball, who’s the best opposition leader of all?

Last week a poll from Survation suggested that the huff and puff of the campaign, including not least two televised leader debates that took place either side of the Easter weekend, had not made much difference to the balance of voting intentions for next month’s Scottish Parliament election. However, much of the interviewing for that […]

More Excitement than Movement? On the Impact of the Campaign So Far.

Labour have not had the easiest of times in the Scottish Parliament election campaign to date. It seemingly changed its mind on whether those on lower incomes should be compensated for its proposed 1p increase in the basic rate of income tax. Then an interview with its leader, Kezia Dugdale, was published in which she […]

Will The Tax Debate Move Voters?

One of the rituals of elections in Scotland nowadays is that at the beginning of the campaign BBC Scotland conducts a poll in which it attempts to establish the popularity or otherwise of the various proposals being put forward by the parties. The results of the exercise conducted (by Ipsos MORI) for this year’s Holyrood […]

What Difference did the Referendum make to Scotland’s Constitutional Debate?

Today MSPs pack their bags and prepare to campaign (or retire). Tomorrow will mark the day that if a majority had voted Yes in the independence referendum, Scotland would, according to the SNP’s proposed timetable, have become an independent country. It is thus an opportune moment to take a look at the state of Scotland’s […]

Have Scots Tories Set Their Sights Too High?

Scottish Tories, who gather together this Friday in Edinburgh have probably not come together in such an optimistic mood for a long time. In recent weeks they have felt able to aim high, suggesting they could overtake Labour in May’s Scottish Parliament election (something the party has not managed to do north of the border […]

Survation on Income Tax, UKIP and IndyRef2

A new poll by Survation that was reported in the Daily Record both yesterday and today has three findings of note. First, although the principle of increasing income tax by a penny in the pound (as proposed by both Labour and the Liberal Democrats) appears to be relatively popular, there is little sign so far […]

Three Key Pointers from Ipsos MORI

Today’s latest poll, conducted by Ipsos MORI for STV news, addresses three of the key questions about the future of Scottish politics – the race for second place at Holyrood, the debate about whether the Scottish Parliament should be attempting its new income tax powers in the near future, and the impact that a UK […]

Some Added Spice? TNS BMRB and YouGov Polls

Just in case anyone was concerned that May’s Scottish Parliament election might prove to be a rather dull affair as the SNP marched to a seemingly inevitable second overall majority, two polls, one released by TNS BMRB yesterday and one by YouGov published in today’s Times, have added some spice to the campaign. Not that […]

Might Scotland Vote to Leave the UK if the UK Votes to Leave the EU?

One of the points of contention between the two sides of the EU referendum debate is whether a vote to leave the UK would potentially constitute a threat to the future of the Union.  The former Conservative leader, Lord Hague, was accused by those in the Leave camp of peddling a scare story when over […]

Survation Poll Reports Record Conservative Holyrood Share

The Daily Record chose to headline its new Scottish poll from Survation this morning – the first of 2016, and the first of what we are told will be a regular series between now and May – as indicating that the SNP were heading for an even larger majority at Holyrood than the nationalists won […]

A Race for Second Place?

This time five years ago we were wondering whether the SNP could possibly win a second Holyrood term. Three polls published in the autumn of 2010 (and there were only three) all put Labour ahead of the SNP  – by between three and ten points. Far from anticipating the possibility of a SNP overall majority, […]

Scottish Labour’s Predicament

Scottish Labour are gathered this weekend in Perth in the hope of kick-starting a revival. The party certainly badly needs to do so. The hole in which it finds itself now is as every bit as deep as the one into which it fell in May when it was all but wiped out in the […]

Public Attitudes to Devolution in Wales – a Permissive Consensus?

The UK Government recently published a draft version of a new Wales Bill. This offers the prospect of more changes to the Welsh devolution settlement, to add to the many that have occurred since the National Assembly for Wales (NAW) was first established in 1999. But while the politicians debate matters, is there clear evidence […]

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