"I may be wrong and you may be right, and by an effort, we may get nearer to the truth." (Karl Popper)

Thursday, May 10, 2007

FF gains, FG/Labour steady

The TNS/mrbi poll in tomorrow's Irish Times shows a slight gain for Fianna Fail, a slight drop for Fine Gael, but Fine Gael's loss is balanced out by an increase in support for Labour; thus the alternative alliance's strength remains in the region of government, were the poll's result to be replicated in a fortnight's time, when one adds the Green party's support. The numbers are as follows: FF 36% (+3), FG 28 (-3), Lab. 13 (+3), PD 2 (-1), SF 10 (no change), Green 5 (-1), Independent/others 6 (no change), undecided 15 (-4). From Fianna Fáil's point of view, at least the poll gives cause for optimism that the party hasn't suffered over the last two weeks. From the point of view of Fine Gael and Labour, 41% between them represents a decent benchmark; it certainly suggests they are in with a shout.

Meanwhile, RTE's Election 2007 site is up and running.

Update (Fri, May 11th, 1.15pm)
Today's Irish Times poll also aksed voters: "Which of FF/PDs or FG/Labour (and possibly the Greens) would you like to see form the next Government?" 36% (+1) answered FF/PDs; 38% (+2) backed FG/Labour (and possibly the Greens); 13% (-2) wished for neither; 13% (-2) didn't know. The alternative also recorded a 35-34 lead when voters were asked which coalition was most likely to form the next Government. This perception finding may be the most important in the entire poll. The party leaders approval ratings were: Ahern 54% (+1), McDowell 34% (+2), Kenny 47% (+6), Rabbitte 50% (+2), Sargent 42% (-1) and Adams 51% (+5).

Damian Loscher of TNS/mrbi, analysing the poll, writes that:
"Arguably, the pledges from the main parties - more gardaí, better health service, lower taxes, stamp duty reform - are not sufficiently dfferentiated to suggest this campaign will be won or lost on the hard issues. Instead the softer issues of character, energy, ambition and confidence will define the campaign. In this context, the scheduled television debate between Ahern and Kenny may yet prove decisive."

Stephen Collins writes:
"A vote share of 28 per cent for Fine Gael and 13 per cent for Labour would give the alliance a better chance of winning the election than the the 31:10 proportions in the last poll. The Labour share of the vote in Dublin has increased dramatically since the last poll and it is now in joint second place with Fine Gael on 15 per cent. ... The further slide in the vote for the Greens will come as a disappointment, particularly as it is now in fifth place in Dublin on six per cent."


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