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  • irishtimes.com - Posted: September 25, 2009 @ 10:07 pm

    The poll: green shoots for coalition?

    Harry McGee

    Below are extracts from Stephen Collins’ report on the poll. In a broader context Government figures are dismal but they can take some consolation from it. Nama and the Late Late have helped a little. Core vote has increased to 18, on a par with Labour. Still doomed to opposition, of course. The real question is how much of a beating will FF and the Greens take? And when it will happen?

    “Brian Cowen’s satisfaction rating is up eight points to 23 per cent but 70 per cent of voters are still dissatisfied with the way he is doing his job.

    When people were asked who they would vote for if there were a general election tomorrow, the adjusted figures for party support, compared with the last Irish Times poll on September 3rd were: Fianna Fáil, 20 per cent (up 3 points); Fine Gael, 31 per cent (down 3 points); Labour, 25 per cent (up 1 point); Sinn Féin, 9 per cent (down 1 point); Green Party, 4 per cent (up 1 point); and Independents/others, 11 per cent (down 1 point).

    The poll was taken on Tuesday and Wednesday of this week among a representative sample of 1,000 voters aged 18 and over in face-to-face interviews at 100 sampling points in all 43 constituencies. The margin of error is plus or minus 3 per cent.

    The core vote for the parties (before undecided voters are excluded) compared with the last Irish Times poll was: Fianna Fáil, 18 per cent (up 2 points); Fine Gael, 23 per cent (down 3 points); Labour, 18 per cent (no change); Sinn Féin, 9 per cent (no change); Green Party, 3 per cent (up 1 point); Independents/ others, 8 per cent (down 1 point); and undecided voters 21 per cent (up 1 point).

    • Polska says:

      1921 – Great Britain?
      NO! = Freedom!

      2009 – European Union?
      NO! = Freedom!

    • It underlines that FG and Labour have made a tactical error in supporting Lisbon 2. A yes vote would be portrayed as a victory for Cowen and FF. They are clueless.

    • Ray D says:

      There is no statistical basis for the usual saying that the margin of error in these polls is plus or minus 3%. It is clearly not so and in fact the margin of error varies in every poll.

    • Desmond FitzGerald says:

      What it shows is how still FG are utterly useless at actual politics and live in an ivory tower.

      FG has no hunger for power at all.

      FG should be playing no part at all in the Lisbon II campaign save to say it supports Lisbon and leave it up to its voters to vote how they want and to control the debate so that it is the government who have to explain Lisbon. Then FG should have hunted John O’Donoghue in exactly the same way he would have behaved if things were reversed, and ditto for Cloughlan.

      If FG claims to have the solution to this mess we are in then why isn’t it doing everything to get the government out – such as refusing pairings, calling for full floor votes in the Dáil and committees, requiring FG reps to publish receipts for the expenses they claim etc etc

      If the polls are true and FF does suffer a massive defeat perhaps FG will be overtaken by Labour. I’m sure if all TDs were given a choice there are many who would rather be in different parties and there are new parties they would make to replace the existing tired old and crony ridden ones.

      It must be easier to start off on a new sheet with a new party than try change the habits of a lifetime in an old party.

    • Paul Dempsey says:

      Q. 1: The real question is how much of a beating will FF and the Greens take?

      Q. 2: And when it will happen?

      The answers to those questions in my opinion are as follows:

      A. 1: They (FF) will be left in a critical condition and on die-hard-crony-funded life support for a very considerable length of time if I gauge the mood of my generation accurately. Hopefully to be portrayed in our history books forever as the party that broke the banks and the backs of the country. Although if there were any justice they would suffer the same fate as the Irish Parliamentary Party and cease to exist altogether. The Greens on the other hand will likely be utterly obliterated by an electoral armageddon.

      A. 2: It can’t happen soon enough.

    • Jamie Sullivan says:

      I’d have to question the maths. How can Labour and FF both be 18% before undecideds are excluded yet Labour are 5% ahead of FF when undecideds are excluded?
      If they are the same % of the total then surely they should be the same % of the smaller sample? It’s not like undecideds can be allocated unevenly if they have offered no preference!

    • FF and the Greens are going to be in opposition after the next election. With nothing to loose it is time to take the hard decisions that are required to turn this economy, like cutting public sector spending including pay and staff numbers, broadening the tax base, reducing social welfare benefits to levels that mean it is more advantageous to work, reducing the level of red tape associated with doing business and creating a green economy to mention but a few.

      With nothing to looe Brian C and John G; Go For It.

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