With under a week to go till the by-election tomorrow’s Times has a Populus poll of Eastleigh (£). Voting intention now stands at CON 28%, LAB 11%, LDEM 33%, UKIP 21%. The bookies have LibDems 4/1 on, Tories 4/1 against and UKIP 12/1 against. Delving nehind the figures it gets better for UKIP.
Without the reallocation of don’t knows the topline figures would have been CON 26%, LAB 12%, LD 31%, UKIP 25%. The reallocation of don’t knows has worked very well for ICM and Populus at general elections, improving their accuracy but will it work at by-elections?. Without this re-allocation the position between UKIP and the Conservatives is very tight.
As I opined earlier this week UKIP' Ms James will get over 20% but can they win? In a fptp election there are no prizes for coming second. They can win if the Tory vote crumbles plus they pick up some from Labour. The easier target may be the LibDems and to win Ms James must go for the jugular and portray them as a party that has no respect for women and uses them when it suits them . Ms Hutchings for the Tories should be doing the same. Huhne and Rennard are unpleasant men and Ms James should have no compunction in so labelling them as such. Women have over 50% of the votes in every election so go for the women's vote Ms James and go for LibDEm male sleaze. How many women MPs do the LibDems have and how many men? The Populus poll shows the votes are there for Ms James to pick up.
The LibDem candidate even his own supporters describe as boring. He talks of defending green land and votes for concreting over a golf course. What for? To house EU immigrants perhaps. Another soft target again for Ms James!
Good luck Ms James but one of Farge's former women has just crawled out to queer your pitch and help the Tories. I opined previously that Andreasen could finish Farage. She has gone off to join the Tories. When on the UKIP NEC I warned Farage about this woman. A proper party would have listened to me and many others but UKIP is a Farage worshipping cult so it lives and dies with its leader. Post Andreasen I think the latter now looks more likely.
I still expect the LibDems vastly superior organisation will get their vote out and retain the seat for Nick. If UKIP come second it will put more pressure on Cameron from his eurosceptic wing. He may even bring forward his referendum date or cut a deal with UKIP.