Irish Polling Report

A place to discuss Irish opinion polls

Poll of Polls

with 14 comments

I’ve done a poll of polls analysis of RedC, MRBI and Lansdowne/Millward Browne’s latest offerings and ran it though the spreadsheet. All three were taken in a reasonably short period of time (although RedC missed the FG pairings debacle) and all 3 companies have a similarly excellent record in GEs, so it’s the best such sample we’re likely to get this side of the election being called. I’ve excluded Quantum Research on the grounds that they are, to put it kindly, dodgy.

The results come out as

FF 23.3% – 41 seats
FG 28.2% – 50 seats
LP 30.2% – 62 seats
SF 7.3% – 5 seats
GP 2.3% – 0 seats
OTH 8.6% – 8 seats

LP have a similar vote-to-seats ratio as the last 2 GEs. 25-28% seems to be a vote where they pass a threshold (depending on the movements of other parties). SF on another 1-2% take a good few of these LP gains (and some FF seats), and even at this level could, depending on luckier transfers, win additional seats in 3-4 more constituencies, so a very small swing to 8% could see them nearly double their representation from this. Given the volatility in their poll rating, it would appear that getting the next GE strategy right will be of historic importance to them, they could still finish between 4 and 10 seats, which is a massive difference for a relatively small difference in FPVs.

FG by contrast appear to need to get over 30% (and/or be ahead of LP) to get into proper seat-bonus territory. FF are holding on at 23% on about 40+ seats, and it would appear that they need a decent increase in this level of support to even be in second when it comes to seats, given a high likely anti-FF transfer pattern between opposition parties. The Greens are looking even more precarious – on these figures they don’t even come close to winning a seat – their highest vote would be Trevor Sargant, with less than half a quota on 9.1%.

I’m not going to do a marathon 4-part post giving each constituency so soon after the last one, but if you’d like to know individual constituencies, let me know and I’ll oblige.

Written by Dotski

October 9, 2010 at 10:51 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

14 Responses

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  1. I have just recently discovered your excellent blog. Your analysis is the best I have every come across. I would be interested in knowing who the 8 Others are in your poll of polls predictions.



    October 10, 2010 at 9:07 pm

    • Cheers Activist.

      I’d start with the caveat that the “Others” is the most unpredictable of all the groups, for a number of reasons you’ll guess. For a start, OTHs are diverse, with someone the left and some on the right (and some apolitical), so a swing to the left or right may not suit all of them (but may doubly suit another) – mind you experience suggests that there are ‘good elections’ for the Indos and smaller parties. Also, their vote is very volatile, and a lot of voters spend their time swinging between them and bigger party candidates, often actually making their decision on the day.

      So while I’m happy enough that the spreadsheet factors this in as much as possible, I’d advise some caution.

      Anyways, this PoPs suggests the following OTH candidates elected;

      1.Breen (Clare), holding off the LP
      2.MOSullivan (Dub C) – this is very hard to call though – there’s rumours that she won’t run, and also that Cieran Perry will. If he does, I’d not write him off.
      3.Higgins, SP (Dub W) – controversially it projects that Leo would lose out to LP2 and SP
      4.Grealish (Gal W)
      5.Murphy (Kildare N)
      6.Healy (Tipp S) – I’ve assumed that McGrath will run as FF and take their only seat
      7.Behan (Wicklow) beating FG to last seat
      8.Lowry (Tipp N)

      There are a number who are also pretty close and could still pull it off, depending on transfer patterns, notably Cavan-Monaghan(IND), Cork NC& Dub Nth (SP), Waterford (IND), Dub SC (PBP), and possibly a second Indo in Gal W if Michael D doesn’t run for LP.

      Kerry S and Dub NC would need a bit of a swing (ideally at FF expense) to be in the chase. Roscommmon is very hard to call, “Ming” Flanagan and LP candidate (and ex-Indo) Kelly are both competing for the same votes, if Flanagan does well SF transfers may decide it.


      October 10, 2010 at 9:51 pm

  2. If you have the time, I’d love to know how Limerick City works out in this.


    October 10, 2010 at 11:05 pm

    • Looks like 1/1/2, with FF losing Power (ahem!), FG losing one (O’Donnell if Noonan runs) and LP gaining one (word I’m hearing is Leddin, but it may be Chinese whispers). The figures suggest FF 24%, FG 27%, LP 40% so it’d not be particularly close – poor vote management I assume on LP’s part (3:1) still doesn’t see them drop the seat, although they end up getting it on SF transfers, due to leakage in O’Sullivan’s surplus.


      October 10, 2010 at 11:23 pm

    • really good blog, btw HandsofBlue, loved the Ayn Jalut entry in particular


      October 10, 2010 at 11:31 pm

      • Oh, thank you very much.

        Thanks for the quick reply, thats pretty much what I expected. Limerick’s 3 constants – O’ Dea, Noonan and O’ Sullivan + L2.

        I don’t know of you’d be interested but Leddin’s recently got into a small-scale public spat with fellow Labour Councillor Tom Shortt over a local construction issue. It was interesting because it was outside Shortt’s jurstiction. Not trying to look too much into it, but possibly challenging for that second spot on the Labour ballot.


        October 10, 2010 at 11:36 pm

  3. Could you give the breakdown for Dublin North please? Also, just wondering how, or if, you took into account the change in the constituency boundaries?


    October 14, 2010 at 11:48 am

    • Hi rmtoh,

      Yes, I took the boundary changes into account, using tallies provided by a SP member who very kindly provided them – these actually didn’t have an enormous change in the party totals – a small reduction in the SP percentage vote, but overall not game changing for any party. It would appear though to stop Kennedy being the front runner for FF, and means that Ryan is more likely to stay the front runner for LP (had Swords not lost votes, a Swords councillor could have outpolled him). I still think that if a Sowrds-ish based femal candidate was put on the LP ticket, he’d trail by a good bit.

      spreadsheet projection is FF 20% (1), FG 17% (1), LP 34% (2), GP 9%, SP 10%

      OTHs are of course volatile, so I’d not rule out Daly – particularly as these results take into account her losing an area that’s good for her, but don’t take into account the extra time she may devote to other areas, making them better for her in the future. Sargant may of course also buck the trend on a personal basis, but he is losing a “leaders bonus”.

      Reilly may over-perform (as a result of his elevation from new candidate to Deputy leader of FG) or under-perform (as a result of the expenses scandal) but either way would be unlikely to affect his electability, or his chances of brining in a running mate.

      FF on these figures should hold 1 of the 2 seats, but there’s no prospect of the second.


      October 14, 2010 at 8:51 pm

      • Hey Dotski,
        Thanks for that detailed response, very interesting. I presume then that you think the Labour vote will be fairly evenly split between the two? Wouldn’t surprise me if Ryan isn’t massively ahead alright, not the most inspiring candidate. Re a female Labour candidate, had you anyone in mind? I would have thought that one of the councillors would get the second nomination.
        Ryan, O’Brien, Reilly and the last seat between LP2 and Clare is fairly close to how I would have seen it panning out, though you never know with Sargent’s personal vote alright.
        Those tallies would be interesting to see I have to say.


        October 14, 2010 at 10:51 pm

        • Yes, I can’t see a Lp candidate being too far ahead of their running mate. no-one in particular in mind as LP2 (well, no-one who is likely to thank me for saying it!). Agree it will probably be a Swords ward Cllr – but which one? Kelleher is apparently looking to run in Dub West, which leaves McGuire, who is really Donabate (although with a reasonable vote in Swords boxes), which is a base for Ryan, again making it possible that Ryan will be behind, rather than ahead.

          it’s really a good example of a place where a non-cllr candidate would make a difference, as although LP are currently favourite to take 2 seats here, even a small slippage would see them lose out to either SP or GP.

          not sure how to post a spreadsheet here (still working out the technical aspects of wordpress after 2 months!) but if you mail me at I’ll send you the tallies. I’ve just reviewed them and they were the LEs, with my revisions based on an extrapolation from them to the GE, so not perfect, but enough to make a difference…


          October 14, 2010 at 11:10 pm

          • Yeah, it’s going be tight alright! Will be interesting. Surely Nulty will be number 2 for Labour in DW so that’d leave Kelleher around for DN, but I suppose who knows yet. Emailed you there, thanks!


            October 15, 2010 at 12:25 am

            • I Heard Nulty going for it too, I guess it depends whether they think Higgins is vulnerable or not.

              Have sent that tally


              October 16, 2010 at 3:45 pm

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