Posts Tagged ‘daily tracker’

The tyranny of the daily tracker poll

08/01/2011, 10:30:56 AM

by Emma Burnell

If, like me, you’re a political geek (and I have to assume that if you’re reading this site, you take at least a passing interest), then you’ll be following the YouGov daily tracker polls. Every night we see how the parties rise and fall. Will we be ahead? By how much? How low will the Lib Dems fall?

Like an underlying drumbeat, the tracker feeds into our daily narrative on the state of politics and the Labour party. Some people celebrate wildly each new time Labour pulls ahead of the Tories and the Lib Dems fall behind “Others”. Conversely, for some Labour supporters it seems to depress them even further, as they convince themselves that Labour is becoming complacent in reading these celebrations.

I try to fall between the two. I think Labour has a long journey still to take, but I take heart from the polls, they make me optimistic for the future. And I channel that optimism into working harder all the time for a Labour victory, taking nothing for granted.

Ed Miliband and his team should be doing the same. That is what the voters – not the hacks – expect. To hear some commentary, you’d think that we were weeks from the next election.  But we’re not, and the public knows it. The Tory-Lib Dem coalition will hold, and as the polls get worse for them are cemented together. No politician – and especially not one as wily as Cameron – would go to the polls by choice with a 20 point disapproval rating. Their programme is clearly designed to ensure that a 2015 election will be at the best possible moment economically. Labour and Ed have time to get this right. There will be hundreds more tracker polls before the only poll that counts, and both optimists and pessimists must learn to take the daily ups and downs for what they really are – a snapshot. (more…)

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