Sunday, April 11, 2010

Hyped Hung Parliament Yesterday's News

Leading pollsters have looked into their crystal balls and predicted a Tory victory, blowing a hyped-up hung parliament out of the water as yesterday's news. What will the chattering classes find to talk about?

The Orange Party never bought into the 'hung parliament' hype. Spun by a political and media elite, giving the polling industry something to get its teeth into. Now even the pollsters don't believe their own polls. You can't make it up.

But clutching at straws suits the failed, flagging New Labour faithful and gives Cocky Clegg a chance to play kingmaker on Fantasy Island. And gives Tories a rocket up the backside.

'Tories set to romp home' doesn't sell newspapers. 'Everything to play for' and 'everything up for grabs', makes for more exciting reading.

Tipping Tories to win is the Sunday sport in today's Independent on Sunday. In the 'Poll of the Pollsters', the experts tell it how it is.

Andrew Hawkins, ComRes: Con majority 32. Ben Page, Ipsos-MORI: Con 25 seats short of overall majority. Andrew Cooper, Populus: Con majority of 10+. Peter Kellner, YouGov: Con majority 20-30. Robert Salvoni, Harris Interactive: Con majority 2-10. Andy Morris, Angus Reid: Con majority 40-50. Martin Boon, ICM Research: Con majority 20. Johnny Heald, Opinion Research Business: Con majority 40+.

Apart from Page at Ipsos-Mori, all predict a Tory majority. Both Kellner and Heald sum up the state of play. According to Kellner: "The public don't want Gordon Brown but have shown no enthusiasm for David Cameron." Or to put it another way from Heald: "The desire to remove Gordon Brown is clearly stronger than the wish to elect the Tories."

As week one of the 'election campaign' drew to a close, a consensus began to emerge with Cameroons 1, Broons 0.

Bottling Brown missed the boat, leaving it too late by up to three years. Porkie Brown's lies have come back to haunt him. Dollops of Brown sauce leave a bad taste. Voters are bored and frustrated. But SamCam comes across as nice. Phil Page is moonlighting from Private Eye filling pages with the latest Poll with a Twist.

One double digit Tory poll lead is a fluke. Two a trend. Three, a movement with momentum. The latest slew of polls show Tories nudging towards the magic double digit lead needed for assured victory. Poll predictions based on a misleading uniform national swing from a small sample takes no account of the battle in the marginals where the election will be won. But current projections point to a Tory majority.

The ICM poll in today's NoW shows marginal polling's shameful spin at its best. A "random sample of 1,001 adults ... across the 96 political constituencies ... currently held by Labour where the Conservatives require a swing of between 4% and 10% to win the seat." A poll based on around 10 people from each constituency. Marginals salami-sliced then some ignored to spin only part of the battleground.

The Orange Party noted last week, no wonder voters are bored. Endless polls. Endless shots of Brown moving from safe house to safe house in a sham stage-managed show with the public as props. But behind the smiley faces, New Labour is fighting like ferrets in a sack ready for a post Brown bloodbath.

"Voters tell Brown and Cameron: Stop lying to us!", shouts today's IoS, puffing up Wind-bag Clegg. And just to make the point, the opening intro paragraph is repeated twice. IoS subs, eh?

The Orange Party feels the mood of voters will decide this election. Real people want to shout about real issues. That boils down to jobs and immigration, beating their brows in mad PC world over 'broken Britain'. But they are denied the chance.

Instead it is the political and media class which is setting the agenda. In the tit-for-tat spats, facts and figures are buried in meaningless fudge. Only gaffes and cock-ups grab attention with the disgrace of a New Labour mailshot to cancer patients today taking centre stage.

The dark dismal days of austerity would have suited grumpy, tired old New Labour. But instead they played the politics of false hope and optimism too early, leaving Honest Osborne to take the flak and tell it how it is.

Now it's spring. The season of change. The 'hungry months' are coming to end. The birds are singing. The daffs are out - all a little late due to global cooling. Dave is capturing the mood with a spring in his step with a neat line in Gap clothing to close the gap.

What have voters to look forward to? A weighty tomb of a New Labour manifesto of all Blair style and no substance on Monday which could be cut down to half the size and made twice as tough. Family man Dave's offering on Tuesday on more that the back of an envelope.

The presidential circus of a 'prime ministerial debate' billed as a UK TV first on Thursday. Outpourings from the political intelligentsia on how they performed at show time. But viewers want blood. The cut of the jib, who makes a gaffe and who breaks out into a sweat.

And without that hung parliament spin, pointless Clegg's presence would be pointless.

UPDATE 2.30pm Ben Page at Ipsos-Mori, the odd one out in the 'poll of pollsters', points out at UKpolling that his quote in the IoS was based on current survey figures. His personal view? Same as the rest - a Tory majority.

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