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Eurotracker
14 May, 2019

Polls as at 10 May

London4Europe Committee member Michael Romberg looks at the opinion polls for London.

 

Caveats

Remember: they are just polls – snapshots that come with a significant margin of error particularly so when you are looking at a small or very small subset of a poll, as almost all of these London figures are. Trends are a bit more reliable, but bring the problem that different companies have different methodologies. One should never read too much into small differences or unusual results. There is a fuller list of caveats after Table 1, as well as notes and general points on interpretation.

 

UK/ GB trackers

You can look at a UK/ GB level tracker graph on the National Centre for Social Research's WhatUKthinks website here. Wikipedia also has a table of results for UK/GB opinion polls and a tracker graph with a slightly different selection of polls. 

 

Contents of this blog

This article looks at the London regional section of national opinion polls and one London opinion poll.  As far as I know we have recorded all published opinion polls about the European Parliament elections voting intentions that have regional tables.

  • Chart 1: vote tracker - all parties
  • Chart 2: vote tracker only for Remain parties 
  • Chart 2A: vote tracker only for Remain parties but excluding polls that did not ask about all three parties; with trendlines.
  • Chart 3: vote tracker showing total pro-Brexit parties vote and total pro-Remain parties vote, with trendlines.
  • Table 1: vote share tracker
  • Table 2: seat share tracker. Seats implied by the opinion polls using the D'Hondt method of seat allocation

 

Some initial indicative conclusions based on the London polls so far:

  • Although London is for Remain, a majority of votes is going to Brexit-supporting parties. In all but one poll, support for Labour was higher than for any one of the Remain parties. However, the trend is moving towards supporting pro-Remain parties.
  • We published an analysis of whether a Common Remain Platform would have brought more seats to the Remain movement. The result was that in about half of cases it probably would have brought an extra seat. But what would really make a difference to the number of pro-Remain seats is Remainers voting for Remain parties.
  • The Brexit Party has supplanted UKIP. It does not look at though UKIP will receive a seat.
  • None of the micro-parties looks likely to reach the 9% or so needed to obtain a seat. However, when parties are scrabbling for the 8th seat in some of the polls the votes that went to "other" might have made a difference to which party won the seat.
  • Perhaps on the back of the local government results, the Liberal Democrat Party have pulled ahead of the other Remain parties. In 5 of the 6 polls taken in May the party would be awarded 2 seats, with an unweighted average vote share of 20%. In one of them they were within a whisker of a third seat. However, one cannot say whether this performance was just a bounce or whether it will be sustained to polling day.
  • Across the six polls in May the Greens were slightly more likely to win one seat than Change UK.  Greens would win one seat in 3 of the polls on an average vote share of 9%; Change UK one seat in two of the polls on an average vote share of 7%. In the national opinion polls in May the Greens have an average lead over Change UK of 3-4 %age points. However, these differences are too small to be significant. That means that they are within the range of polling error. So it is probably fairest to say that both parties are running roughly equally and are each in line to win one or zero seat.
  • For those considering tactical voting, remember that the rules for tactical voting are different in D'Hondt than under FTPT. It is much harder to know what to do. Just backing the leading party is too simple; in some cases you would do better to back a smaller party that is on the edge of winning a seat. You may find this LSE blog helpful. Or vote strategically: for the Remain party that best meets your idea of being "for Europe".

 

 

CHART 1: Vote Tracker

 

 

CHART 2: Vote Tracker for Remain parties (same information as in Chart 1 - just focused on these three parties and larger scale, for the benefit of those who wish to vote tactically)

 

 

 

CHART 2A: Vote Tracker for Remain parties (same information as in Chart 2 except that it only includes polls that asked about all three parties). Note that some of those polls were taken before the 23 April launch of Change UK's European elections campaign  (29 March - applied to be registered as a party; 16 April: approved as a party). Trendlines calculated by Excel. The calculation ignores that the time interval between polls is not constant. 

 

 

 

 

CHART 3: Vote Tracker showing the total pro-Brexit vote (Brexit Party, Conservative, Labour, UKIP) and the total Remain vote (Change UK, Green, Liberal Democrat). Other is excluded. The trendlines have been calculated by Excel. The calculation ignores that the interval between polls is not constant.

 

 

 

TABLE 1: Vote tracker. This table looks at the share of the vote in successive opinion polls.

 

 

Number Cruncher

10-17 January

Opinium

12-15 March

Opinium

28-29 March

Hanbury Strategy

5-8 April 

YouGov

10-11 April

Opinium

9 -12 April 

YouGov

15-16 April

ComRes

16 April 

YouGov

16-17 April

Opinium

21-23 April

Brexit

- - -

 9

11

 7

 15

 11

 19

23

UKIP

11 8 14

 10

6

 11

 8

 3

 3

3

Con

23 29 17

 15

14

 21

 17

 7

 14

15

Lab

48 39 38

 48

35

 45

 25

 53

 26

35

Change

- - -

 5

7

 4

 5

 10

 11

13

Green

6 6 17

 2

12

 3

 16

 4

 11

2

LD

11 15 9

 11

13

 9

 13

 10

 14

9

Other

0 3 5

 0

1

 0

 1

 1

 2

0

 

TOTAL BREXIT

82 76 69

 82

66

 84

 65

 74

62

76

TOTAL REMAIN

17 21 26

 18

32

 16

34

 24

36

24

 

TABLE 1 - continued

 

 

Survation

17-25 April

YouGov

23-26 April 

YouGov

28-29 April

YouGov

29-30 April

ComRes

1-7 May

Opinium

3-7 May

YouGov

8-9 May

ComRes

9 May

YouGov

7-10 May

Opinium

8-10 May

Brexit

 20

 19

24

23

18 18 23 15 20 34

UKIP

 8

 3

1

2

1 2 2 4 1 0

Con

 18

 11

7

14

15 18 8 9 10 4

Lab

 27

 28

33

27

32 34 21 29 24 31

Change

 5

 17

9

14

13 0 12 6 7 4

Green

 7

 10

14

11

8 7 10 9 14 7

LD

 11

 10

9

9

12 20 23 27 17 19

Other

 5

 2

2

1

0 0 1 1 5 1

 

TOTAL BREXIT

 73

 61

65

66

66 72 54 57 55 69

TOTAL REMAIN

23

37

32

34

33 27 45 42 38 30

 

Notes

  • Brexit = Farage’s Brexit Party
  • Change UK, formerly The Independent Group of MPs
  • LD = Liberal Democrats
  • TOTAL BREXIT = sum of Brexit Party, Conservatives, Labour and UKIP
  • TOTAL REMAIN = sum of Change UK, Green and Liberal Democrats
  • "Other" is excluded from these two totals.
  • Totals do not always sum to 100 due to rounding.
  • The allocation of parties to Brexit/ Remain will be reviewed if the parties' positions change. Summary of the parties' European Parliament elections manifestos here
  • Basis of allocation of Labour to Brexit: for example: 2017 general election manifesto; Jeremy Corbyn’s speech to 2018 party conference. The famous 2018 conference resolution only rejects a Conservative deal that fails to meet Labour’s six tests and no-deal; it does not reject Brexit absolutely. 2019 European Parliament elections manifesto.
  • Note that individual MEP candidates for the Conservative and Labour parties do not necessarily subscribe to their party’s stance on Brexit. We have published information on the Brexit stance of individual candidates here. Allocation of votes to Total Brexit/ Remain is based on parties not individuals. The closed list system means that voters cannot choose individual candidates on a party's list.
  • Party MPs, members, supporters and voters do not necessarily share their party's position on Brexit. Moreover, in elections people vote on many issues, not just Brexit. So, especially with Conservative and Labour votes, the extent to which the elections should be taken to be a proxy referendum is limited. 
  • For both of the main parties there are organisations campaigning to change their party's policy on Brexit. You can read up about them here in our blog and find their addresses so that you can join them. 
  • You can find the individual data for each previous poll with calculations and a link to the source on the latest blogs page.
  • Where individual tables included don't know/ won't say/ won't vote as a separate category, they have been taken out in the tracker table.

Some general points

  • In the early polls, respondents may not have given much thought to these being European Parliament (as opposed to Westminster)  elections.
  • At the time of the first polls the Brexit Party and Change UK had not been founded. Then they were rumoured, then announced, then launched.
  • Polls before Labour's 30 April National Executive Committee meeting are before the confirmation of Labour's policy for the European Parliament elections.
  • Polls before the 2 May local elections do not take into account the results of the elections or the reactions to those results.

 

CAVEATS

  • It’s a poll. A snapshot in time. People’s views change. If “don’t know/ won’t say” is large, then their views could swamp small differences between parties once they decide. Similarly, if many people say they will not vote their votes could affect the result if they change their mind.
  • European elections normally have low turnout. Differential turnout amongst supporters of different parties could affect the result compared with a poll. Different polling companies have different methodologies for adjusting for turnout.
  • The definition of “London” in the poll may not match the London constituency for the election.
  • Polls come with a margin of error. On the highest level figures asking a question of the whole sample a rule of thumb is that polls come with a margin of +/- 3 percentage points (so a finding that 45% think this might be anything in the range 42%-48%). London figures are almost always a subset of the poll so the margin of error is larger. A good sample size for a whole poll would be 2,000 or so; think how much smaller the London number is than that. Only the YouGov 7-10 May poll was just a London poll with 1,000 respondents all in London.
  • My calculations are on rounded numbers and that might introduce an error when results are close.
  • Different companies use different methodologies. So polls asked by different companies are not wholly comparable.
  • Small differences between polls do not tell you anything because of methodological differences and the margin of error which is quite large because the London sample is a small subset of the total sample.
  • Unusual results in a single poll do not tell you anything because the poll might be an outlier. Wait to see whether the effect is sustained.

 

TABLE 2: Seat tracker. This table looks at the seat allocation implied by successive opinion polls. Seats have been allocated using the D'Hondt formula. You can read up how that works here. You can look at the individual calculations with links to sources in a series of individual blogs with the title "Polls into seats" in the latest blogs section of the website.

 

 

Number Cruncher

10-17 January

Opinium

12-15 March

Opinium

28-29 March

Hanbury Strategy

5-8 April

YouGov

10-11 April

Opinium

9 -12 April

YouGov

15-16 April

ComRes

16 April 

YouGov

16-17 April 

Opinium

21-23 April

 

Brexit

- - -

 0

1

 0

 1

 1

 2

2

UKIP

1 0 1

 1

0

 1

 0

 0

 0

0

Con

2 3 2

 1

1

 2

 2

 0

 1

1

Lab

4 4 4

 5

4

 5

 3

 5

 2

3

Change

- - -

 0

0

 0

 0

 1

 1

1

Green

0 0 1

 0

1

 0

 1

 0

 1

0

LD

1 1 0

 1

1

 1

 1

 1

1

Other

0 0 0

 0

0

 0

 0

 0

 0

0

 

TOTAL BREXIT

7 7 7

 7

6

 8

 6

 6

 5

6

TOTAL REMAIN

1 1 1

 1

2

 0

 2

 3

2

 

TABLE 2 continued

 

Survation

17-25 April

YouGov  

23-26 April

YouGov

28-29 April

YouGov

29-30 April

ComRes

1-7 May

Opinium

3-7 May

YouGov

8-9 May

ComRes

9 May

YouGov

7-10 May

Opinium

8-10 May

Brexit

 2

 2

2

2

2 1 2 1 2 3

UKIP

 0

 0

0

0

0 0 0 0 0 0

Con

 2

 1

0

1

1 2 0 1 1 0

Lab

 3

 2

3

2

3 3 2 3 2 3

Change

 0

 1

1

1

1 0 1 0 0 0

Green

 0

 1

1

1

0 0 1 1 1 0

LD

 1

 1

1

1

1 2 2 2 2 2

Other

 0

 0

0

0

0 0 0 0 0 0

 

TOTAL BREXIT

7

 5

5

5

6 6 4 5 5 6

TOTAL REMAIN

1

 3

3

3

2 2 4 3 3 2

 

 

 

Views expressed in articles on this page reflect the views of the author and not necessarily of London4Europe.