Election Prediction

I think the bottles of port, beers and cases of wine I’ve bet with twitter correspondents, friends and colleagues are going to bankrupt me if Labour win, and give me alcoholic liver disease if the Tories do. So, hot on the heels of my correctly predicting the outcome of the Scottish Referendum, AND the EU elections; I, the UK’s own Nate Silver using little more than reading, wishful thinking and guesswork am going to tell you what’s going to happen over the next 36 hours.

David Cameron will still be Prime minister, probably with help from DUP, and the remaining Liberal Democrats. The alternative, Prime Minister Miliband is too grotesque to contemplate. Tories will probably be quite comfortably the largest party; here’s why:

  1. Miliband is obviously a helpless, flailing git. In the privacy of the polling booth, this will matter, leading to
  2. The usual Tory out-performance of their polling, and labour underperformance of theirs.
  3. The polls are currently showing a small Tory lead.
  4. The polls may well be wrong, on a scale not seen since 1992, because the polling methodology hasn’t been tested with the rise of UKIP, the collapse of the Lib-Dems and the rise of the SNP.
  5. Labour will do a bit better than polling suggests in Scotland, as will Tories (but to little avail in seats)
  6. Liberal Democrats will retain 25 seats
  7. UKIP will have 3: Clacton, Thurrock and one other. Neither Mark Reckless in Rochester, nor Farage in South Thannet will be MPs on May 8th.
That is my prediction with my sensible trousers on. But I think a small Tory majority is possible. That this is wishful thinking cannot be discounted, but the polls have so many moving parts in this election, methodologies are likely to be strained. In particular, spiral of silence adjustments to take into account the ‘Shy Tory’ effect have been getting larger. Yet Tories ALWAYS seem to outperform. In addition, the late swing seen in 92 may just be even later this time.
I would like the Coalition to continue. But I’ll settle for a Tory majority and consider emigration should the emetic Mr. Miliband be Prime Minister.
9 replies
  1. Anonymous
    Anonymous says:

    A lot of wishful thinking there. (I wish for the same as you), but I think the stories will end up with seats in the high 290s.

  2. Anonymous
    Anonymous says:

    I think you are right. Too much polling relies on on- line and day time phone calls. Last moment decisions tend to favour the incumbent on the better the devil you know approach. Tories might just achieve a majority them selves.

  3. Malcolm Bracken
    Malcolm Bracken says:

    There's a good chance UKIP will be on 1, Carswell in Clacton. The range is 1-5. Clacton, Thurrock, Grimsby, Thannet S and Rochester are possible, in declining order of liklihood. In effect, these are all most likely to work with a Tory government to deliver the EU referendum. Liberal Democrats are harder to shift than herpes, and dig in well. They WILL outperform, and will work with Tories. I think the main reason the pollsters will be embarrassed is a high turnout may mean a lot of quiet people are thinking "I don't want to risk Miliband".

  4. Simon Jester
    Simon Jester says:

    Pulling my predictions out of roughly the same place that Jackart pulled his:

    – Labour to win the most seats.
    – Tories to win the most votes.
    – LibDems to win approx 15 seats.
    – UKIP to win 5-6 seats – and significantly more votes than LibDems.
    – SNP to be third largest party by number of seats at Westminster.
    – No majority coalition – outside of a "grand alliance" of Tory and Labour, only SNP and Labour would be even mathematically possible, and they won't be able to reach terms.
    – Labour to govern as a minority government.
    – Another election inside two years.

    Now please wash your hands.

  5. Anonymous
    Anonymous says:

    I think you can expect (approximately):

    Con – 280
    Lab – 275
    SNP – 42
    Lib Dem – 25
    DUP – 9
    Sinn Fein – 5
    Plaid Cymru – 5
    SDLP – 3
    UKIP – 2
    Green – 1
    Respect – 1
    Independent – 1
    Speaker – 1

    I guess a Lab / Lib Dem minority government is the most stable outcome if that happens though they'll probably need some sort of support from at least one other party.


Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *