Poll signals Labour doomsday scenario in Scotland

If this poll carries over to the General Election, Scottish Labour will see itself virtually wiped out.

If this poll carries over to the General Election, Scottish Labour will see itself virtually wiped out

The three declared candidates to lead Scottish Labour will this afternoon be considering the meaning of a devastating poll carried out by Ipsos Mori for the STV.

The polling, carried out during a period which saw outgoing leader at Holyrood, Johann Lamont, resign with a damaging critique of the UK-wide party, gives the SNP a huge 29-point lead when people are asked how they would vote in next year’s General Election.

Of those voters questioned in Scotland who said they are certain to vote, 52 per cent say they will vote SNP, with Labour languishing on 23 per cent. Support for the Scottish Conservatives stands at 10 per cent, with the Scottish Liberal Democrats and the Scottish Green Party both on 6 per cent.

According to the calculations by Electoral Calculus, if such a swing from Labour to the SNP was seen in every constituency the SNP would pick up 54 Westminster seats, an increase of 48 on the seats they currently hold.

Meanwhile Scottish Labour would see itself virtually wiped out, seeing their total number of seats cut from 41 at present to just 4, those being Willie Bain in Glasgow North East, Tom Clarke in Coatbridge, Chryston and Bellshill, Gordon Brown in Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath and Ian Davidson in Glasgow South West.

The Liberal Democrats would lose all but one of their current tally of 11 seats, with only Scottish secretary Alistair Carmichael surviving.

Mark Diffley, director at Ipsos MORI Scotland, said of the results:

“The poll gives a further boost to the SNP ahead of their upcoming conference and the formal announcement of Nicola Sturgeon becoming the new first Minister. At the same time it will be particularly unwelcome news for the Labour party after a bruising period since the referendum, culminating in Johann Lamont’s resignation last week. They will hope that this represents a trough in public support and that their upcoming leadership contest will allow them to begin to regain some of the support they have lost.”

With Ed Miliband due this evening to address Scottish Labour’s Gala Dinner, STV political editor Bernard Ponsonby has commented:

“This is the most dramatic poll findings ever to be published in Scotland and underlines the scale of the challenge for Labour leaders both north and south of the border.

“There are only two polls in recent memory which have generated as much surprise, the most recent during the independence referendum showing the Yes camp ahead, and before that you’d probably have to go back to 1992 and a poll for ITN which showed support for independence at 50% for the first time.

“Now it is a poll, not an election result, but what it does is to underline the scale of the challenge facing the new leader of Scottish Labour and the figures come as Ed Miliband arrives in Scotland to address a gala dinner in Glasgow.

“On these figures he has little chance of winning a UK election with his Scottish power base facing meltdown.”

Ed Jacobs is a contributing editor to Left Foot Forward

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