The Thick of It

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Thursday, April 03, 2008

Second preferences have it

Any form of opinion polling should be looked at with a careful eye. Whether by telephone or web, successful polls always need willing respondents and that will inevitably exclude some people. Nevertheless, Ken's campaign was still on risky territory by initially challenging the Evening Standard's YouGov polls, which showed at least a 10% lead for Johnson. This is based on the theory that many Labour voters are hard to reach.

YouGov didn't weight their results for the ethnicity of London or filter out those unlikely to vote, rendering their results unreliable. They did garner positive

Today's Guardian ICM poll puts Johnson one point ahead. Livingstone is far ahead among women, non-whites and those in inner London. The key to victory resides in getting Labour voters to actually vote. Closing the "Labour gap" between those who identify with the Party and actually vote.

Labour also badly needs the Lib Dem second preferences. My belief that most Lib Dems are inherently more right than left is borne out by the poll findings showing that Paddick supporters are more likely to give Johnson their second preferences than Ken. Having watch Paddick "perform" at the Evening Standard's Influentials debate on Monday I can understand why Lib Dems might like our Brian. He was wooden, as if being interviewed for a job. Most of his responses were taken straight from a management manual. When asked what book would guide him through mayoralty he said "I want to listen to London, not be guided by a book." Great. Thanks Brian. Unfortunately his supporters hold the key, but Ken's strategy of wooing them by bigging up his environmental credentials is exactly the right one for the sandal brigade.

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