Watch my Sky News interview on polling and the marginals

By Lord Ashcroft

Yesterday I was interviewed about my polling on Sky News by Joey Jones. You can watch the interview here:


Click here to see full story on Sky News

Ashcroft National Poll: Con 32%, Lab 32%, Lib Dem 6%, UKIP 15%, Green 9%

By Lord Ashcroft

Labour and the Conservatives are neck and neck in this week’s Ashcroft National Poll. Both parties are on 32%, with UKIP third and unchanged on 15%. The Greens are fourth on 9%, down two points from last week’s peak but still ahead of the Liberal Democrats, fifth with 6%.

The SNP are down two points at 3%. However, this figure hides the disproportionate influence the party could have in May, and illustrates why the national polls – though clearly showing a tight race in terms of overall vote share – are not the best guide to the result in terms of seats (more…)

Ashcroft National Poll: Con 29%, Lab 28%, Lib Dem 9%, UKIP 15%, Green 11%

By Lord Ashcroft

After last week’s outlier – an occupational hazard in polling – it is back into the territory of wafer-thin leads in this week’s Ashcroft National Poll. The Conservatives are ahead by a single point with 29%; Labour are unchanged on 28%, UKIP down one at 15%, the Liberal Democrats up one at 9%, the Greens up three at 11% and the SNP up a point at 5%.

The ANP has tended to find a lower combined share for the two main parties than most other surveys, and this is the lowest two-party share I have yet recorded. It is also the first time both Labour and the Tories have scored less than 30%. (more…)

The people, the parties and the NHS

By Lord Ashcroft

The general election debate over the NHS has already become an exchange of insults, doubtful assertions and unreliable statistics of the kind that voters find so edifying. But despite the noise, both parties are avoiding real discussion of the subject.

Labour have put the health service at the centre of their campaign. But they look set to focus on spending the proceeds of their Mansion Tax and, of course, attacking the Tories’ record. There is no sign of the harder thinking on the longer term of the kind that the previous Labour government was prepared to grapple with. They know the choices and unpalatable, not least with their own voters.

The Conservatives are reluctant to talk any more than they have to about the NHS because they feel no such conversation would end well for them (more…)

Ashcroft National Poll: Con 34%, Lab 28%, Lib Dem 8%, UKIP 16%, Green 8%

By Lord Ashcroft

The first Ashcroft National Poll of 2015 has produced an unexpected result. The Conservatives lead Labour by six points, by 34% to 28%, with the Liberal Democrats unchanged on 8%, UKIP down three points at 16%, the Greens up three points at 8% and the SNP down one point at 4%.

It is important to keep results like this in perspective, and to look at the overall trend rather than any individual poll. The ANP is subject to a margin of error of 3% – meaning the Conservative share could be low enough, and the Labour score high enough, for the parties to be tied on 31% (more…)

No predictions from me – but here’s a whole gallery of snapshots

By Lord Ashcroft

Last week, along with various colleagues from the polling fraternity, I was asked by the Independent on Sunday to make a prediction about the election. At the risk of looking like a spoilsport I declined, as I always do when faced with such a question. I felt my usual answer – “I think it’s going to be quite exciting” – was not exactly what the editor would be looking for.

As was clear from the answers of those who bravely or recklessly did take part, nobody is very sure exactly what to expect (more…)