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Why Prime Minister Boris Johnson is indeed in an uptrend: Philip Cowley analyzes polls



Of the 28 nationwide opinion polls conducted since the parliament voted for the election, everyone agrees that conservatives are ahead, but they vary greatly by degree.

One, for example, suggested that leadership is 17 percentage points, while the other estimates it at only six. How should you understand this?

Well, perhaps the most important thing to remember when doing a public opinion poll is that the results are not as accurate as they are sometimes presented.

All 28 polls conducted after the general Christmas election put conservatives ahead

All 28 polls conducted after the general Christmas election put conservatives ahead

Even a survey conducted by a reputable company, which has been tormented for hours for wording its question and aimed at a representative sample of the population, can lead to an error of plus or minus three percentage points for any single result.

This gap can increase when determining the leadership of one side over the other, which is based on the use of two variable values.

Therefore, as a person who spends almost all of his time analyzing such polls, I advise you the following: never rejoice in small changes in party support in one poll. Instead, focus on trends over time.

It is also worth noting that sociologists differ from each other in how they do their own business – how they communicate with people, how they evaluate results, and so on.

This leads to changes, which means that it makes no sense to compare a survey of one company directly with another.

Despite the error, they all show a tendency for Labor to fall behind in polls (pictured: Boris Johnson, speaking yesterday at the CBI conference in London)

Despite the error, they all show a tendency for Labor to fall behind in polls (pictured: Boris Johnson, speaking yesterday at the CBI conference in London)

However, despite all these pitfalls, some trends have become apparent in recent weeks.

Tori and Labor, for example, have tended to increase since the election at the expense of both the liberals and the Brexit party.

As a result, the total percentage of votes for the two main parties averaged 71 percent in the last nine polls.

Now this may seem obvious, but do not forget that in May and June there were polls in which the Brexit party and / or liberals were in first or second place. Since then, compression has become merciless.

Conservatives will be particularly pleased that so far there is no sign that Labor is swallowing their voters list. For, although at this point in the 2017 campaign, conservatives had a higher percentage of leadership, then there were already signs that the Laborites were catching up.

Now the opposite is true: the conservatives are pulling forward a bit. Indeed, of the five largest leaders of conservative polls during the election, four came to the polls over the past week.

Jeremy Corbin, pictured at a CBI conference in London yesterday, fights for every vote as polls continue to show his backlog ahead of the general election

Jeremy Corbin, pictured at a CBI conference in London yesterday, fights for every vote as polls continue to show his backlog ahead of the general election

However, it should be remembered that the latest changes in the electoral process were exaggerated by the decision of the Brexit party to move to the places that the conservatives received in the last election, which means that some of the latest polls offered only the respondents of the poll the choice of choosing the Brexit party, if it stands in its own constituency.

Therefore, one should expect the most recent growth in conservative support. In fact, if the conservatives did not have growth trends right now, this would be a sign that something went wrong with their campaign.

And one should never forget that there is always the possibility that a major national leader will not turn into a majority of communities, if this is mainly due to the fact that more and more places are already taken.

Thus, although analyzing survey trends may be more useful than studying images, it still does not replace the crystal ball.

Philip Cowley is a professor of politics at Queen Mary of the University of London and one of the editors of Sex, Lies and Politics: The Secret Influences Defining Our Political Choice, published by Biteback.


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