Adrian Kavanagh, 7th December 2017
Following on the general election speculation of recent weeks and a decidedly unpromising Red C poll from the previous weekend, this morning’s Irish Times-Ipsos MRBI opinion poll offers very good news for Fine Gael, with this showing Fine Gael on a support level similar to that won by the party in the 2011 General Election. There is also good news for Sinn Féin, but not good news for Fianna Fáil, with that party’s support level falling – relative to the previous Ipsos-MRBI poll from October – in line with the surge in Fine Gael support. However, the combined vote Fine Gael/Fianna Fail vote share in this poll stands at 61%. This, admittedly, is lower than the combined vote levels commanded by these parties before the onset of the Economic Crisis in 2008, but these poll figures seem to mark another stage in the recovery of the “Civil War” parties. Is “Civil War” politics back? Maybe, maybe not…although it must be noted that when the other “Civil War” party, Sinn Fein, is factored in here, the combined support levels for the “Civil War parties” comes in 80% in this poll – up by over 15% on the combined support levels won by these parties at the 2016 election. As the larger parties advance, the smaller parties and Independents all fall back, with the exception of the Green Party, while the Labour Party support levels remain significantly lower than the already very low levels of support won by that party at the 2016 contest.
The 7th December 2017 Irish Times-Ipsos MRBI opinion poll etimates party support levels as follows: Fianna Fail 25% (down 4% relative to the previous Ipsos MRBI opinion poll), Fine Gael 36% (up 5%), Sinn Fein 19% (NC), Independents and Others 16% (down 3%) – including Solidarity-People Before Profit 1%, Social Democrats 1%, Green Party 3%, Independents 9% – Labour Party 4% (NC). My constituency-level analysis of these poll figures estimates that party seat levels, should such national support trends be replicated in an actual general election, would be as follows: Fianna Fail 44, Fine Gael 70, Sinn Fein 28, Labour Party 2, Green Party 2, Social Democrats 1, Independents 11. Continue reading