Although MSPs and schoolkids across Scotland start their summer holidays this week (in classically dreich style here in Glasgow), there’s no rest for the wicked in Scottish politics. A somewhat busier period for polling than is usual for Scotland continues with this poll from Survation (link to tables), which seems to be entirely in house rather than on a client’s behalf.
The previous Survation covered the 27th of April-3rd of May 2023. Changes are shown as (vs that poll / vs last election).
If there’s one thing you can read through this poll (and, uhh, every poll for the past four months) it’s basically this: it doesn’t look good for the SNP, does it? Although they remain in the lead here, it’s only a point ahead of Labour, or in statistical terms allowing for margins of error, a dead heat. This is the side of polling we’ve seen actual ties and even a Labour lead so far, and it may now be a matter of time before Survation joins that crowd.
For the other parties, the Conservatives are down by a firmly within margin of error single point, though more significantly versus their 2021 performance. The Greens remain static, with Survation continuing to be on the poorer end of current polling for them, whilst the Lib Dems are on a comparatively strong figure due to an upswing.
One oddity here though: the last Survation poll prompted for Alba (finding 3%), but this one hasn’t. I’m assuming that’s to do with the fact the last poll was on behalf of a client whereas this one is under their own steam. It’s possible the client last time asked for Alba to be prompted for but Survation opt not to do so for their own polls. That may be to the SNP’s advantage for the headline figures here, as with Alba prompted for that may have been what tipped them into a second place.
The SNP’s lead over on the constituency vote is more substantial, but Labour are again closing in. Labour’s gains seem to have come primarily from the Conservatives, who’ve fallen a bit harder here. For the Lib Dems, this is a joint best figure on this vote for the term so far – all of which have come from different pollsters.
Projecting that into seats might give us something like this:
Survation polling had already moved into minority territory for the current SNP-Green government, but there’s a further squeeze on the SNP here that boosts the total for the Pro-Union bloc, giving them a 71 to 58 advantage. As ever, I remain broadly of the view that any Pro-Union majority with Labour as the largest party by default leads to a Labour First Minister. A small consolation for the SNP here is that with a Glasgow list seat, it’d be unlikely for Humza Yousaf to lose his seat in this projection.
The Westminster figures basically align with the Holyrood constituency shares, only differing by 1% for each party. Although the SNP remain ahead of Labour in vote terms, this is probably the point in Westminster support where Labour end up with more seats.
The movement on the constitution is within margin of error, but it is nonetheless movement, with the headline figures seeing support leaking from Independence to the undecideds – rounding is keeping it from summing up neatly. It’s worth noting that Survation is, along with YouGov, one of the pollsters that finds the largest number of Don’t Knows which then deflates support for both camps relative to other firms, but that aside the general trend here is clear: continued but not overwhelming advantage goes to the Union.
As ever, the last little bit of analysis concerns those hypothetical and more proportional voting systems that BBS likes to play about with. The use of pure FPTP at Westminster is an affront to democracy, and though Holyrood fares far better, AMS is still deeply imperfect. The examples here simply transpose the poll findings onto more proportional voting systems – the reality is that different systems would of course result in different voter behaviour.
Scandinavian Style Westminster
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