Archive for July, 2015

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The issues facing Britain: Immigration and NHS down/ Defence-terrorism sharply up

Wednesday, July 29th, 2015



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What the latest private LAB polling has done to the betting

Wednesday, July 29th, 2015

Burnham the big loser after survey had him 3rd

One of the great features now on the Betfair exchange for those who like trading is that with one click you can cash out and instantly get to a position where you are equal on all outcomes.

Yesterday evening just after news of the latest private polling came out there was nearly £10,000 available on Betfair for those who wanted to lay Andy Burnham at the price of 2.1. Effectively this was a bet on all three other contenders at slightly shorter than evens.

Given the Mirror story the price was then out of line with Burnham’s perceived chances. Tissue Price and others highlighted this on the thread and I took as much as I could.

The price then moved out over the next 45 minutes and I cashed out leaving me with a very nice all green book making a pretty good profit whatever the outcome and having no money at risk whatsoever.

I can’t call this race and I doubt if others can with any confidence. Best play for safety.

Mike Smithson





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“Private poll” seen by Mirror sees Corbyn with 22% lead on first prefs with Cooper pipping Burnham for 2nd place

Tuesday, July 28th, 2015

It’s hard to comment on private polling and I’ve no idea about the veracity of it. But I don’t think that the Mirror would be flagging it in the way it is without it having some confidence about the source.

The Corbyn lead is extraordinary and fits in with other indicators.

The question is which of Cooper/Burnham/Kendall will get to the final round of counting against Corbyn.

    One of the crazy misjudgements of Team Burnham was that the Corbyn second preferences would come their way. If JC is in the lead then his supporter’s 2nd and 3rd prefs simply are NOT going to be counted.

Thanks again Labour for all the entertainment you are giving us during what is usually a quiet time.

Mike Smithson





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Re Mr. Cameron’s plan to appoint many more CON peers – the vote split from GE15

Tuesday, July 28th, 2015



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ORB/Indy poll finds that 76% think that LAB less electable now than it was on May 7th

Tuesday, July 28th, 2015

But does this poll really tell us anything?

An ORB poll for the Independent carried out over the weekend finds that 76% of those who had a view believe that LAB is less electable now than it was at the general election.

We’ve not yet seen the dataset or the precise question wording but the overall picture looks gloomy for the red team and sets out very clearly the challenge facing the new leader when he/she takes over the party on September 12th.

    Aren’t we just seeing what happens to most political parties less than three months after a devastating election defeat?

I can’t recall a similar post general election poll on a party that has lost power and is going through the process of finding a new leader.

How, for instance would the Tories have performed in a similar survey eleven weeks after their 1997 election defeat by Tony Blair’s new Labour or in the aftermath of GE2001 when IDS, Ken Clarke and Michael Portillo were slugging it out. In the latter the blue team ended up with the leader who was the most unelectable – something that was blindingly obvious to many inside and outside the party

Inevitably leadership contests highlight divisions because that’s their very nature and we know that voters are more reluctant to give their support to split parties.

The big question is how LAB will be seen when the new leader is in place.

Mike Smithson





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Why getting a credible leader is so important to LAB: YouGov polling on why the party lost

Monday, July 27th, 2015

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The data that underlines the importance of the current election

Whichever of the four ins he/she will have to be perceived a lot better than Ed was if the red team is to have any chance whatsoever.

This polling should be at the heart of the leadership campaign. A non-credible leader means a likely third consecutive general election defeat.

Mike Smithson





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Why we won’t be hearing much from the Tories this summer

Monday, July 27th, 2015

Notice there’s been nothing from the blue side re-Mid Staffs

Probably the most successful Lynton Crosby message in the run-up to May 7th was the warning of “confusion and chaos” if Labour was returned.

It was this, I’d suggest that helped get the marginal CON supporters out to vote and UKIP switchers back into the fold in the constituencies where it mattered.

The Tories have learned that simple easy to understand messages that resonate and a strict communication discipline can pay dividends.

Now, if as seems likely the above Tweet is correct, the Tories are having a quiet summer so all the focus on Labour’s leadership race.

    What is very clear is that the Burnham campaign’s effort to get Corbyn the nominations to be on the ballot was a total misjudgement. It says a lot about their and his political abilities.

Meanwhile it will be the evening of September 12th, in the hours after the LAB victor is announced, that Mid Staffs will feature once again in the blue rhetoric if Burnham is the winner.

Mike Smithson





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The prospect of fighting a disintegrating LAB could cause Dave to change his mind about stepping down

Monday, July 27th, 2015

Is he having second thoughts about his exit date?

Following Cameron’s comments in the BBC interview at the end of March there’s a widespread assumption that at some stage this parliament that he’ll step aside and a new CON leader will be elected presumably becoming PM before the May 2020 general election.

But is he? The conversation in Cameron’s kitchen came at a time when the election outcome looked very tight. Very few were making assumptions that an overall CON majority was going to be possible. The political context was very different from today.

There were many in the party ready to cast the blame on Dave for failing in 2010 to secure a majority against Gordon Brown. In May, against all expectations, Cameron became an unequivocal election winner.

Now the Tories are in power without the encumbrance of the LDs and look set to be there for all the five years. In the meantime we’ve seen the extraordinary developments within LAB which looks even further now from a GE20 victory than it did on May 8th. Could Cameron’s view of his own future have changed? This was John Rentoul in yesterday’s Indy on Sunday.

“Soon Cameron will have to manage speculation about exactly when before the next election he will stand down, as promised from his Oxfordshire kitchen to the BBC’s James Landale, who tried to hide his excitement at the scoop by fiddling with some vegetable or other.

Indeed, the Prime Minister might have to manage the speculation (from me) that he might change his mind about stepping down before the next election. On current trends, it doesn’t look as if the Labour Party is going to put up much of a fight, so you can imagine Cameron having second thoughts. As he entertained Westminster journalists in the garden of No 10 last week, he looked as fresh-faced as ever, invigorated by the youth-giving elixir of election victory.”

I agree with Rentoul’s observation. It is far from clear that Cameron will go according to the assumed time-table. Walloping LAB again in a general election might prove to be too tempting.

Mike Smithson