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Ashcroft poll: Labour could be wiped out by SNP in Scotland

Senior Labour and Liberal Democrat MPs including shadow pensions minister Gregg McClymont and Treasury chief secretary Danny Alexander are under threat by the Scottish National Party’s surge in popularity, new polling reveals.

According to a poll of 16 key constituencies conducted by former Conservative deputy chairman Lord Ashcroft, only one – Labour-held Glasgow North East – will withstand the SNP onslaught. Thirteen of the seats set to be taken by the SNP are held by Labour MPs, with two occupied by Lib Dems.

Former SNP leader Alex Salmond is also on course to enter the Commons. He is standing in Gordon, a Lib Dem seat, which would be an SNP gain if the election mirrors the poll.

The constituerncies were chosen by Ashcroft because they either voted Yes to independence in the referendum or the result was close.

In Labour constituencies the overall swing to the SNP was 25.4 per cent. In the same seats, 60 per cent of those who voted for Labour in 2010 would do so again in the upcoming election, while 35 per cent said they would support the SNP.

However, the most popular election outcome in these seats was a Labour/SNP coalition, favoured by 39 per cent of voters.

Lord Ashcroft says: “With a vigorous Labour campaign there remains room for movement before May. For such a crucial battleground the campaign in these seats has yet to reach fever pitch – perhaps not surprisingly given the exhausting referendum campaign. Just 13 per cent said they had heard locally from the SNP in the last few weeks, and only 9 per cent from Labour.”

He adds that at least a third of people polled in Labour-held seats were not completely certain they would switch their allegiance from Labour to the SNP.


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There are 19 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. Anything that prevents Labour getting back in at the forthcoming election will be good news as far as I’m concerned.

  2. Poor Mr Miliband. The PLP didn’t want him. Party members didn’t want him. Now Scotland doesn’t want him. What has he done to deserve this? I blame 4 times Oscar winner Nick Park for basing a cartoon character on him.

  3. Is this the same Lord Ashcroft involved in the non payment of tax on certain assets domiciled overseas enquiry ?

  4. “Poor Mr Miliband. The PLP didn’t want him”

    No (and for what it is worth neither did I) but it was scarcely an unprecedented situation. Let’s not forget for the sake of balance that the Conservative parliamentary party didn’t want Ian Duncan Smith (they voted for Ken Clarke); it was the anti EU constituency parties that put IDS at the head of the Conservatives with predictable results. The only difference is that the Conservatives got rid of IDS before the next election.
    I have to say (and I am well aware that my political opinion is of no interest to anybody) that the only fear I have about next May is the prospect of a Labour/SNP coalition. Man the barricades….

  5. John-Dale McCallum 4th February 2015 at 11:37 am

    In Scotland we have a very poor choice of who runs the country… Either Labour, who spend, spend, spend and create mountains of debt, or SNP who start projects and pay twice the price or create massive white elephants in Edinburgh and claim it is a success…

    Who to vote for? Labour buffoonery or SNP lies and idiocy (it’s all scaremongering, ok Alex…)?? Green Party anyone???

    We can’t win up here!

  6. @ John-Dale McCallum

    There is no such thing as a perfect government…after all they are run by humans; but the SNP do seem to do OK which is probably why so many have joined the party and so many look like the will vote for them.

    Although my prediction is Labour / SNP coalition I think that the current Conservative / Lib Dem setup is far more preferable.

    Can you imagine Ed Balls as Chancellor??

  7. Gordon, how can Balls be worse than this Osborne clown ?

  8. @ Paul Woolley

    Because quite simply Osbournes policies have put the UK back on the path to recovery.

    Ed Balls was instrumental in the UK being brought to its knees financially and his policies havent changed.

    Quite frankly I am staggered that he is still in his job. His reputation is tarnished beyond repair.

    Thats probably why he has zero support in the business community.

  9. Balls will tax until the nuts squeak.

  10. Thanks Gordon,
    The last budget has I feel caused mass panic amongst retirees.
    I can only speak for myself and my clients however and not the whole of the business community which it appears you are the appointed spokesman for.

    The next regime will have to increase tax , no matter what colour or colours are represented.
    Unless all the retirees cash in their pension pots and Mr Osbourne collects the 40 or 45% tax from them.
    Very neat trick George.

  11. @ Gordon Sinclair

    All the independent accounts of the financial crash I’ve read tend to blame people like Dick Fuld of Lehman Brothers for the crash – together with his mates on Wall Street. Ed Balls tends not to get mentioned much – apart from when they refer to Labour public spending plans and the fact that Cameron & Osborne supported those spending plans right up to 2008…

    Even Mervyn King has said that the crash wasn’t the Labour Govt’s fault.

    Guess we must be reading different accounts!

    @Ken Durkin
    You’re right, Balls is bound to put up VAT – oh, hang on, that was George Osborne…

  12. @Paul Woolley

    Never said I speak for the business community.

    What I do though is keep abreast of current affairs. Its all there if you want to have a look.

    As are details of how well the UK economy is doing vs other nations.

    Why would the last budget lead to mass panic among retirees?

  13. Gordon,
    You answer with sweeping statements, nothing concrete at all.
    I know the problems my clients have with these rules as I speak to them on a daily basis.
    I also know the confusion that this has caused and that a lot of people will be paying a lot of tax by mistake due to this.
    I am one of the business community by the way. Please don’t speak for me.

  14. Paul

    Apologies…by business community I meant big business. See press for full details.

    You made as sweeping statement re mass panic amongst retirees.

    You decided not to elaborate. Fair enough.

    Lots of people will pay more tax if they don’t get suitable advice. That is as given for many situations.

  15. Thanks Gordon, I am pleased we agree.

  16. An audience member on last night’s question time got it right. He reminded viewers that the last Labour government raised the top rate of tax from 40% to 50% 2 months before the general election so that they could attack the Tories when they reduced the tax. His disgust at the hypocrisy of the Labour party shone through every word.

  17. Oh Ken , stop sitting on the fence.

  18. @Smithy _ I thought that big financed was a case of the Emperors new clothes in 2000, let alone after the 2nd Gulf War started in 2003, I also remember Golden Brun standing up (supported by his aid Ed Balls) and saying “no more boom and bust” and thinking yes he’s quite right, the bust is going to be twice as big so it should be like Basel Brush, but in reverse, i.e. not Boom, Boom, but Bust, Bust and we still see that large parts of Europe are BUST.
    More fairy story analogies for you “securitised lending” i.e. financial pass the parcel and Northern Rock WERE LEFT HOLDING THE SMELLY PACKAGE.
    All the above happened under NuLibor and whether the Tories or LibDems would have done any better, while questionable, trying to say Ed Balls ,Golden Brun and Toni Bliar were not responsible for either the UK economy or Middle East wars that are occurring NOW is frankly laughable.
    Just as Toni Bliar ignored history and fell for his neo con friends in America’s ideas, Golden and Balls did the same with MONEY.

  19. If the facts are on the fence I’ll sit on it.

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