We’ve been having a dig through the recent YouGov poll (fieldwork 26-29 November) commissioned by The Sun. It’s full of all manner of interesting data, strengthened by a rather bigger-than-usual sample of 1,919 voters.
We were intrigued to note, for example, that 56% of respondents in England and Wales disapproved of the government’s record (with just 30% in favour), but 55% of those same people thought Scotland should vote to stay in the Union they themselves were so unsatisfied with (just 21% said they’d vote Yes if they had a vote).
Now, it’s possible to explain some of this apparent contradiction away. For example, fully 90% of UK Labour voters disapproved of the UK government, but 60% still wanted Scotland to vote No and remain subject to it. The rationalisation, of course, is that they think everything would be fine under a Labour UK government.
Because that Labour government would of course be headed by Ed Miliband. And this, according to the poll, is what Labour voters think of Ed Miliband:
In touch with the concerns of ordinary people: 57% Honest: 39% Sticks to what he believes in: 36% Decisive: 16% Strong: 13% Charismatic: 10% Good in a crisis: 13% A natural leader: 10%
None of these: 18%
Wow. The leader Labour voters want Scots to put their faith in as the great saviour of everything that’s wrong with Britain is considered to be “honest” by barely over a third of his own supporters. A frightening 87% feel themselves unable to express confidence in their man’s ability to handle a crisis (and goodness knows, if we’re not in a crisis now we can’t imagine what counts as one).
Scarcely a third think Miliband is a man of principle. Just one in six think this would-be Prime Minister capable of acting decisively, and even fewer are prepared to credit him with possessing strength. Almost a fifth, meanwhile, attribute NONE of the listed positive qualities to poor Ed. (Almost twice as many as consider him a natural leader.)
And yet this weak, indecisive, dishonest man – by the account of Labour voters, remember, not us – is the alternative Labour present to an independent Scotland. His own supporters have no trust in him whatsoever, yet they demand that Scots put themselves in his hands (in the highly-doubtful scenario that he could actually win an election in the first place) and just hope for a miracle.
Labour voters’ ratings of David Cameron, unsurprisingly, are lower still – single figures in every category except “none of these”. So the proposition they offer Scots is “Vote No and have either a useless wimp for Prime Minister, or an actively evil one”.
How much longer until the penny drops?