Sunday Business Post-Red C poll 10 April; Kenny-a believe it?

Adrian Kavanagh 14th April

A new Dail and a new series of opinion polls leading up to a future general election in 2015 or 2016! As the constituency level poll analysis held up remarkably well in light of the eventual election results (and the last analysis involving the results of the Millward-Brown poll of 23 February was remarkably close to the actual result in terms of seats allocations), it is interesting to see what seat allocations would be based on the first of the post-election polls, the Red C poll published in last Sunday’s (10 April) Sunday Business Post.  This estimated party support as follows: Fine Gael 39%, Labour 18%, Fianna Fail 16%, Sinn Fein 11%, Independents and Others 16% (including 2% for the Green Party). What is striking about these figures is the degree to which they largely mirror the February 25th election results, but when seats are allocated based on the constituency-level poll analysis model the difference is somewhat more pronounced – this estimates seat levels as follows:  Fine Gael 80, Labour 29, Fianna Fail 22, Sinn Fein 13, Independents and Others 22 (including 6 seats for United Left Alliance candidates). When the effect of vote-splitting between multiple candidates is accounted for, particularly amongst the independent and Fianna Fil ranks, the numbers would probably read as Fine Gael 80, Labour 33, Fianna Fail 20, Sinn Fein 15, Independents and Others 18 (including 5 seats for United Left Alliance candidates). Continue reading

Party finance and Political Representation

Ken McDonagh 13 April 2011

Vincent Browne has a new bugbear – party finance. In today’s Irish Times he writes: ‘The only reason anyone would give money to a political party is because they expect to get something in return’
He goes on to link the problem of private funding for political parties to the disproportionate representation of the views of the very wealthy, (to read the full article click here) however his proposed solution is neither fair nor practical.
This is due to the fact that Vincent has misidentified the problem, the transactional nature of political support is not the core of the issue – namely the willingness to donate in order to have your view represented, essentially this is the same logic as voting – the problem is the relative difference in power and influence between the very wealthy and the ordinary citizens produced by the ability of the former to use their substantial financial resources to influence policy makers. Continue reading