BUT this is what YouGov say:
ComRes have for some reason commissioned a special election poem:
I PREFER DEMOCRACY
You can run a land with armies
You can rule a sea with boats
But I prefer democracy
Where you run a land with votes.
You can run a land with bullets
You can crush dissent with sticks
But I prefer democracy
Where you run a land with ticks.
You can run a land with slogans
You can dominate with voice
But I prefer democracy
Where you run a land with choice.
You can run a land with torture
You can keep control with fights
But I prefer democracy
Where you run a land with rights.
You can run a land with freedom
You can find a people’s heart
But if this is democracy
You have to play your part.
You can run a land that dances
You can run a land that rocks
By voting for democracy
With your cross inside a box.
Steve Turner 2015
Kill Guido now.
But the Tory lead is just one point with YouGov:
The final polls come in in seven days…
This is a poll of polls average for today only:
Worth noting that the Labour figure is inflated by their very high rating with Panelbase.
As you can see below, TNS, Panelbase and Survation all put Labour ahead, but the latest polls out tonight from ComRes and YouGov have the Tories in first:
Which makes this Guardian splash, released before the ComRes and YouGov polls, look rather premature:
Too late to change the splash?
After ten years of sniping from the sidelines, Guido has decided to up his game. This website has never been John Bercow’s biggest fan, but now it is time to throw down the gauntlet…
When he was a lowly backbencher, Bercow maxed out his expenses. He has done little to reform his ways as Speaker. A running total is over half a million in clothes and limos…
Bercow told the Commons last week that he was ‘not going anywhere’, but Guido intends to see him on the ground in Buckingham. The nomination papers are in, the deposit is paid. Bring it on, shorty…
Multiple Labour sources have accused the party’s NEC of stitching up safe seats for committee members, with Keith Vaz in the frame for fixing selections for his friends. When there is a late retirement in the run up to an election, Labour has a standard procedure where an NEC sub-committee chooses the candidates to go forward for selection. This special selections panel is usually put into place close to the election for last minute selections only, however Guido is told that this time it was implemented in January. The NEC deciding that any constituency where the MP stood down after 10 December last year not have local shortlisting powers and the NEC rather than their local party would handle the selections. One Labour source describes this as “earlier than ever”, another as “way too early”, noting there is “still plenty of time to run proper selections”. Why the change from convention?
Since the special NEC panel was set up, NEC members are mysteriously being selected for safe seats all over the place. NEC member Conor McGinn was put on the shortlist for the uber-safe seat of St. Helen’s North, winning the selection two weeks ago. McGinn represents the same division on the NEC as Vaz.
As Guido reported yesterday, NEC member and Unite agitator Rachael Maskell has just been selected in York Central in acrimonious circumstances.
Meanwhile the selection in Edmonton, where Andy Love has retired, takes place this weekend. At the moment the favourite is Kate Osamor, surprise surprise, yet another NEC member. Three NEC members put forward for safe seats just weeks after the NEC special selections panel was set up – more than a little fishy…
The Electoral Commission are making a lot of noise today about their partnership with Facebook ahead of the general election. On Thursday Facebook will push a notification onto the timelines of its 35 million active British users, telling them that they can register online to vote. Users will then be able to share with their friends that they have registered.
Additionally, the Electoral Commission will cough up for ad space on Facebook, encouraging young people to vote.
Facebook were heavily involved in the last US election and a similar project in which they encouraged US voters to go out and vote was hailed in the media as a great success after a study led by the University of California, San Diego estimated it increased voter turnout by 340,000. If Facebook could bring out that same proportion of extra voters here, by Techno Guido’s calculations they would increase voter turnout by 77,197 – which is almost exactly the size of the of electorate in the constituency of Tewkesbury.
A whole constituency worth of young voters. No wonder politicians are cosying up to them…
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This reflects a lot of current political reporting…
It is 100 days until the election and the LibDems are marking the occasion by releasing this new poster, which they helpfully explain is “deliberately playing on a previous Conservative poster”. See what they did there…
All well and good, but is it a German road?
The Electoral Commission has written to Guido, ConservativeHome, LabourList and LibDemVoice to provide them with “guidance” to bring them into line with the Putinesque provisions of the new Transparency of Lobbying, Non-Party Campaigning and Trade Union Administration Act 2014.
Mark Ferguson at LabourList says
“It seems particularly bizarre (and that’s being generous) that there’s one law for “newspapers and periodicals” and another for “websites”. Perhaps the government are finding this new-fangled internet thing very confusing. We’re still working through what the most appropriate response is to this dreadful law – more worthy of a banana-Republic than a democracy – that clamps down on campaigning and free speech at a time when it’s needed most, election time. Whatever response we decide on though, we will not be submitting ourselves to any form of regulation that stops us from writing, reporting and commenting on the election campaign as we see fit.”
ConservativeHome’s editor Paul Goodman tells Guido whilst sorrowfully shaking his head, that he feels the site has no alternative, given the terms of the Lobbying Act, but to “run some pieces by senior Labour MPs during the election campaign”.
After ringing round it seems that other political blogs like the Spectator’s CoffeeHouse and PoliticalBetting.com have not being offered “guidance” by the Electoral Commission. Guido has written back to the Electoral Commission:
Dear Electoral Commission,
Thanks, but we’re not registering with you and
we’re not going to pay any attention to your rules.
Yours in freedom,
Editor Guido Fawkes’ Blog
Guido has no intention of registering with the Electoral Commission or reporting a penny of spending or anything else to them. This authoritarian law is a nonsense. If you read the guidance it should apply to newspapers. We haven’t just rejected statutory control of the printed press by one regulator for political control of digital media by another…
See: Electoral Commission letter in full [PDF]
Given that four months out the Tories still have 81 candidates to select in England, plus all of Northern Ireland still to do, you might have thought it would be all hands t’mill over at the CCHQ candidates department. Apparently not.
According to the ‘out of office’ Gareth Fox – Head of Candidate Selection – it’s still holiday season:
“Thank you for your email, I am currently on leave until 12th January and I will respond when I return.”
Tory sources say everything is tickety boo and Fox is ‘around’ – a fact disputed by angry potential PPCs unable to get an answer to calls and emails. “This man is about as popular as herpes,” writes one co-conspiratorial candidate to Guido…
Today is the day election spending rules kick in and the campaign for 2015 officially begins. Here are the key dates for your diary:
- December 19: Long campaign begins. Candidate spending limited to £30,700, plus 9p per voter in county (rural) constituencies, and 6p per voter in borough (urban) constituencies.
- January 5: House returns from Christmas recess.
- February 12-23: February recess.
- March 18: George Osborne delivers the final budget of the parliament. He only has a few working days to get it through before…
- March 30: Parliament dissolves. Short campaign begins. Spending restrictions tightened to £8,700, plus 9p per voter in county constituencies and 6p per voter in borough constituencies.
- May 7: Election day.
138 days to go…
The Electoral Commission today reveals how much each party spent on their European election campaigns. The big bucks splashed by the Tories and UKIP meant they paid six figures for each seat won. Labour got best value for money, spending just over a million quid for their 20 seats, or just over £50,000 per MEP.
The LibDems blew £1.5 million with just one MEP to show for it…
Fascinating analysis on ConHome showing how Labour’s poll ratings six months out from elections have historically compared with the final election result. Guido’s graph above illustrates how “Labour consistently end up winning fewer votes in the general election than the polls would have suggested six months in advance”. Lewis Baston concludes: “Governments gain more often than oppositions: if my Conservative-supporting readers want some comfort, there are no cases of a Labour opposition gaining ground over the final six months”. Something for Tory MPs to cling onto going into next year…
Lucy Powell’s first day in charge of Labour’s election campaign did not do much to quell colleagues’ fears she is not up to the job. At the prime time of 11pm last night Powell sent out her first mass email to Labour supporters, with the subject line “The deep end”. Waving?
In a section titled “How we’re going to win the election”, Powell raises concerns the Tories will “[use] their funding advantage to overwhelm voters with their message via every medium possible — TV, post, billboards, public transport”. Of course, as any vice-chairman of an election campaign would know, in this country outspending your opponent by splashing cash on TV adverts is explicitly prohibited by electoral law. So was that a mistruth or mis-hire?
English Democrats: 5.8%
Massive electorate. Limited ground operation. Warnings for UKIP here ahead of next year.
These are the proposals from the broadcasters:
- One head-to-head debate between the two leaders who could become Prime Minister – Conservative and Labour. This debate will be co-produced by Sky News and Channel 4 and chaired by Jeremy Paxman. Kay Burley will introduce the programme and present the post-debate analysis. The whole programme will be carried live on Sky and Channel 4 and their digital platforms, as well as having a major presence across social media.
- One debate between the Conservative, Labour and Liberal Democrat leaders. This debate will be produced by the BBC and presented by David Dimbleby. It will be broadcast on BBC One with extensive live coverage on other BBC TV and Radio networks and online.
- One debate between the Conservative, Labour, Liberal Democrat and UKIP leaders. This debate will be produced and broadcast by ITV. The ITV debate, chaired by Julie Etchingham, will air on ITV’s main channel and online
They have written to the four leaders inviting them to take part…
UPDATE: Farage says yes but might want more: “if the political landscape continues to change we would expect and ask for inclusion in a second debate”
UPDATE II: The LibDems say no: “We do not accept proposal that the Lib Dems, as party of government, should be prevented from defending our record in one of the TV debates.”
Speaking exclusively to Guido in the media scrum after his press conference, Nigel Farage has called for the Electoral Commission to be abolished for allowing the misleadingly named An Independence From Europe party onto the ballot papers. Farage accepted that the spoiler party cost UKIP an even greater win, the party is furious that Gawain Towler was denied a seat in the South West because of the vote being split by the other party’s “UK Independence Now” slogan.[…] Read the rest