YouGov published a Euro Election poll over the weekend where they broke the results down by area of the country. These areas did not correspond exactly with the regions, they were coarser, but the results can be used to attempt to predict the number of MEPs that may be returned in each region.
I have a workbook which calculates the distribution of seats based on the d’Hondt system used in the European Elections. The results of my analysis of the YouGov poll is shown below – the regions are grouped by the areas that YouGov used, the outline results of their poll more conveniently reviewed on the UK General Election 2015 Site. Hence, the predicted percentages for some regions will be identical – clearly, the actual results will vary more between regions, but it’s the best data we have at present.
What conclusions can be drawn from this? For a start, it will be a close run thing in SW England and SE England where Conservatives and Labour are polling the same on 22%. They each could get 1 or 2 seats, depending on which one pushes slightly ahead of the other, and in SW England that outcome may affect whether UKIP gets 2 or 3 seats. Will Gawain Towler get a MEP job in Brussels or not?
The result in NW England is close between us and the Greens for the last of the 8 seats. With the Greens on 9% they get an MEP, and UKIP gets 3. However, if UKIP does slightly better, or the Greens slightly worse, Shneur Odze gets a job in Brussels, as well as Paul Nuttall, Louise Bours and Steven Woolfe.
The UKIP poll for the North of England, 35%, equalling the South of England, the two most pro-UKIP regions, shows that UKIP’s strategy of working hard to win over the Labour voter in the north is working, where UKIP is ahead of Labour on 33%.
The Liberal Democrats will get slaughtered, of course. They presently have 12 MEPs, and will be reduced to 4 – so much for Nick Clegg’s committing his party to the EU. The Greens will be probably will maintain their 2 MEPs, whilst the SNP will maintain their 2.
History tells us that our poll ratings climb as the election approaches, and there is some evidence that UKIP voters are more likely to vote in low turnout polls. At the moment UKIP is in the lead (based on the poll) with at least 27 MEPs, but it could go higher. Watch this space.