Sunday Business Post/Red C Poll, 19th December

Adrian Kavanagh, 18 December 2010

Sunday Business Post-Red C opinion poll December 20:  FF 17 (NC), FG 34 (+1), Lab 23 (-4), Greens 2 (-1), SF 14 (+3), Others 10 (+2)

On the basis of these figures, my constituency-level analysis of the poll estimates seat levels as follows: Fianna Fail 27, Fine Gael 66, Labour 46, Green Party 0, Sinn Fein 15, Independents 12 (including 5 United Left Alliance seats)

Based on the poll figures, this analysis estimates constituency support levels for the different parties as follows:

Carlow-Kilkenny 22.0% 41.6% 24.0% 3.8% 8.6% 0.0%
Cavan-Monaghan 14.3% 35.9% 2.5% 1.4% 37.3% 8.6%
Clare 20.4% 49.5% 4.1% 2.4% 7.8% 15.8%
Cork East 13.3% 32.8% 40.5% 1.1% 11.7% 0.7%
Cork North Central 12.8% 30.1% 24.6% 1.3% 14.4% 16.7%
Cork North West 26.4% 58.2% 13.6% 1.9% 0.0% 0.0%
Cork South Central 19.9% 38.8% 23.1% 3.9% 11.3% 3.1%
Cork South West 17.9% 46.1% 22.5% 3.0% 10.5% 0.0%
Donegal North East 20.3% 27.8% 11.8% 0.6% 34.9% 4.6%
Donegal South West 20.6% 28.5% 6.3% 0.6% 42.6% 1.5%
Dublin Central 17.0% 11.1% 26.8% 2.3% 17.4% 25.4%
Dublin Mid West 14.7% 26.0% 27.0% 5.0% 20.3% 7.0%
Dublin North 19.6% 19.9% 24.9% 8.1% 6.1% 21.3%
Dublin North Central 18.5% 32.6% 16.9% 2.3% 7.8% 22.0%
Dublin North East 14.9% 26.2% 31.6% 2.6% 24.7% 0.0%
Dublin North West 17.4% 10.8% 40.1% 1.0% 27.6% 3.2%
Dublin South 19.7% 39.6% 27.6% 5.5% 7.1% 0.5%
Dublin South Central 11.0% 14.6% 39.1% 2.0% 16.7% 16.6%
Dublin South East 12.4% 24.5% 40.0% 6.2% 10.1% 6.8%
Dublin South West 13.4% 20.8% 37.9% 1.3% 20.5% 6.1%
Dublin West 13.5% 22.4% 34.2% 1.4% 8.5% 19.9%
Dun Laoghaire 14.1% 29.0% 35.9% 3.3% 4.4% 13.3%
Galway East 18.1% 54.2% 7.9% 0.9% 7.2% 11.8%
Galway West 18.0% 30.1% 29.8% 2.8% 7.1% 12.3%
Kerry North-West Limerick 10.3% 32.3% 19.9% 0.7% 33.1% 3.8%
Kerry South 15.2% 28.5% 28.0% 0.7% 6.5% 21.1%
Kildare North 15.0% 24.5% 36.8% 1.9% 4.6% 17.2%
Kildare South 22.1% 22.9% 50.3% 2.8% 0.0% 2.0%
Laois-Offaly 30.4% 44.9% 7.1% 0.6% 13.6% 3.4%
Limerick City 22.8% 36.3% 26.8% 1.3% 9.7% 3.2%
Limerick 23.3% 60.0% 15.4% 1.2% 0.0% 0.0%
Longford-Westmeath 14.7% 33.7% 43.4% 0.7% 6.9% 0.6%
Louth 17.2% 36.5% 11.3% 3.2% 30.3% 1.3%
Mayo 13.2% 63.9% 12.9% 0.3% 9.7% 0.0%
Meath East 17.7% 32.1% 27.0% 1.3% 7.9% 14.0%
Meath West 22.8% 39.0% 9.9% 1.2% 24.6% 2.5%
Roscommon-South Leitrim 14.6% 44.7% 24.3% 0.7% 15.6% 0.2%
Sligo-North Leitrim 16.6% 48.3% 8.7% 1.3% 23.4% 1.7%
Tipperary North 12.2% 17.1% 20.2% 0.4% 6.6% 43.5%
Tipperary South 19.2% 26.6% 20.2% 0.7% 6.3% 27.0%
Waterford 18.6% 33.3% 25.2% 0.9% 13.2% 8.8%
Wexford 16.5% 37.6% 30.0% 0.5% 14.3% 1.1%
Wicklow 14.4% 26.7% 34.4% 2.9% 9.3% 12.2%

Based solely on these constituency support estimates, seat levels for the different parties and groupings are “guesstimated” as follows:

Carlow-Kilkenny 1 3 1
Cavan-Monaghan 1 2 2
Clare 1 2 1
Cork East 2 2
Cork North Central 2 1 1
Cork North West 1 2
Cork South Central 1 3 1
Cork South West 2 1
Donegal North East 1 1 1
Donegal South West 1 2
Dublin Central 1 1 1 1
Dublin Mid West 1 1 1 1
Dublin North 1 1 1 1
Dublin North Central 1 1 1
Dublin North East 1 1 1
Dublin North West 2 1
Dublin South 1 2 2
Dublin South Central 3 1 1
Dublin South East 1 3
Dublin South West 1 2 1
Dublin West 1 2 1
Dun Laoghaire 1 1 2
Galway East 1 3
Galway West 1 2 2
Kerry North-West Limerick 1 1 1
Kerry South 1 1 1
Kildare North 1 2 1
Kildare South 1 2
Laois-Offaly 2 3
Limerick City 1 2 1
Limerick 1 2
Longford-Westmeath 1 1 2
Louth 2 2 1
Mayo 1 4
Meath East 1 1 1
Meath West 1 1 1
Roscommon-South Leitrim 2 1
Sligo-North Leitrim 2 1
Tipperary North 1 2
Tipperary South 1 1 1
Waterford 1 2 1
Wexford 1 2 2
Wicklow 1 2 2
STATE 27 66 46 0 15 12

At the risk of repeating myself, there’s no further commentary on these figures, given that most, if not all, of the relevant comments that I could make on these figures have already been made in in the recent post commenting on the the recent Irish Times poll, which produced relatively similar results to this poll.

Candidate selection will, in part, determine the degree to which these poll figures/seat estimates translate into actual election results – for an up to date (or as up to date as I can get it!) list of candidate selections to date, visit this site.

21 thoughts on “Sunday Business Post/Red C Poll, 19th December

  1. I think if there will be any Green TD left it will Sargent in Dublin North, at the expense of FF and that the time has come for the Haughey’s to be laid to rest in DNC, I’d see a Labour seat there at the expense of FF too.

  2. While ideological differences might control excesses in policy, a Lab/FG coalition based on 112 seats is downright dangerous!

  3. Irish Times Ipsos-MRBI opinion poll December 16: FF 17 (-7), FG 30 (+6), Lab 25 (-8), Greens 2 (NC), SF 15 (+7), Others 11 (+2)
    RED C SB Post poll December 19: FF 17 (NC), FG 34 (+1), Lab 23 (-4), Greens 2 (-1), SF 14 (+3), Others 10 (+2)
    Given the 3% probable error, these polls essentially agree.
    The trend of Labour losing to its left is reinforced.Labour is paying for its committment to coalition with Fine Gael BEFORE the government is formed.
    The FG increase is a symptom of right-left polarisation of society which was inevitable in the wake of a viciously unfair and socially divisive budget
    After Jan 1, the pay cheque, the pension cheque and the welfare cheque will be reduced while the income of wealthy non-employees including those on huge pensions will be increased by the Budget measures (Universal Social Charge favours the Rich)
    The trend in these polls will be strengthened as polarisation continues.
    The notion that Fg/Lab will achieve a second term is nonsense. Labour has always lost out in the wake of coalition even in the relatively benign environment of 1997. In the current circumstances of austerity for several years the collapse of the Labour vote will match its ascent. This does not mean that Fianna Fail will necessarily return to government. I expect the left opposition to the next government to grow further in the subsequent election and in the next European and Local elections
    In the coming election the tansfer pattern is sure to be affected by societal polarisation. FF will do even worse out of transfers than heretofore and traditional Labour transfers to Fine Gael could be reduced. There is widespread and justified perception among public servants, many of whom are currently supporting Labour, that Fine Gael is more hostile to their well-being than Fianna Fail!

    • Why are you including Labour in the ‘the left’ – let’s face reality the reason it is losing ‘left’ voters is precisely because it’s not left. It’s about as left as much as Bertie Ahern is a socialist.

      Labour is probably more like the UK Lib Dems which professed to be left of centre but in power turned out to be right of centre. Gilmore is Ireland’s Nick Clegg. It won’t stop Labour being in the next government but let’s keep things real.

  4. You are correct about the POLICIES of the Labour Party. It is true that the reason it is losing votes is that its policies are “nor left enough”
    But you are incorrect to cassify the labour Party as similar to the British Lib Dems. The lib Dems or “Whigs” are an avowedly capitalist party which historically lost out to the Tories as the main political representative of British Capitalism. The Irish Labour Party was formed by the trade unions (ITUC Congress Clonmel 1912).Even to-day the main Irish Labour movement Organisation SIPTU (formerly ITGWU)is affiliated to it as are many Irish trade unions including the Irish Branch of UNITE. Similarly the main UK Trade Union UNITE is affiliated to the British Labour Party. The British and Irish Labour Parties are members of the Socialist international and the socialist group in the EU parliament. Because of the renegacy of the Irish labour leadership in the War of Independence it has always been a stunted party. These roots are not an excuse for the shameful policy of its leadership. Because of its historical roots and its links to trade unions it is perceived by the population as the political representative of organised Labour in Ireland EVEN BY PEOPLE WHO DON’T VOTE FOR IT. It has a different social base to Fianna Fail and the British Lib Dems. It is a mistake to characterise parties solely in accordance with the policies of their leaderships. Fianna Fail had a very “left wing” policy in the thirties. It ,however, remained a capitalist party, albeit of the Bonapartist variety (eg Peronism, Gaullism). The Labour party is a party of the left with a right wing compromising leadership. A coalition of Labour, Sinn Fein and left TDs would have a different character to a coalition of Fine Gael, Sinn Fein and the left. You think a coalition of Fine Gael and Sinn Fein is improbable? Remeber Clann na Poblachta. Sean McBride, its leader, was a former chief of staff of the IRA. The depth of the Irish crisis is such that literally anything could happen!

    • Personally I’d like a majority Fine Gael government but the only party I would not like to see in gov is Sinn Fein – as long as McGuinness and Adams continue to deny what they did in the past – the idea that there are people in Louth, Louth where even now the bodies of people killed by the IRA are still being found, who would vote for Adams, is too sickening for words.

      I get that there are some people who genuinely support that sort of party and the rest of civil society has failed to them into refelcting on what they are doing, a bit like those who take drugs try pretend because they are nice middle class people that that are not as much of a scumbag as the drug dealer they buy from, but it doesn’t mean voting for SF should be condoned or accepted – until SF comes clean on its past, it has no role in the future of Irish governance.

      Sean McBride didn’t rob banks and he didn’t ‘disappear’ the mother of a young family and dump her body on a wild beach.

      Labour is affiliated to the unions – when were the unions in Ireland ever concerned with the working class, where was the union pressure to get proper pensions and proper housing policies over the last 25 years? The Working Time Directive? The Labour Party has no organisation in constituencies that are proper working class. Where is the Labour Party for people in Sherriff Street or the modern slums of Limerick.

      Instead all it’s best chances of winning seats are in middle class areas – middle class ares were people like to pretend they are ‘ordinary’ while being offended if anyone else thinks they are ‘ordinary’.

      Fianna Fáil as a Bonapartist Party? Was that Napoleon 1st, Napoleon 3rd or Napoleon 4th – as they all had different ideas about Bonapartism but I see why you would choose that example.

      I don’t think the depth of the crisis in Ireland is so bad it’s beyond repair from within because ultimately when we vote, we get to say who we want to provide the solution. If Fine Gael and Labour had been in government this mess wouldn’t have happened to the same extent and the disasterous solution imposed by Cowen and Lenihan at the behest of their banking buddies would certainly have never happened.

      But, just like it took the revelation of the child abuse and magdalene horrors to break the grip of the Catholic Church, it probably needed the political crisis we face now for the grip of the political system to be broken and that’s no bad thing. FG & L would have been fine but maybe ‘fine’ isn’t good enough anymore but the real left side don’t live in the real world or understand how human nature works – we’ve had systems of ‘equality’ and they don’t work. What the real left should be doing is leaving people to earn money but in such a way that lessens the gap and educates people on why sharing fairly and paying proper taxes is a good thing for them too.

  5. Just on my own constituency, I can’t see both of the sitting FF TDs losing “their seat”.

    One of them is currently a hapless Minister of State but the other is a backbencher that does a reading at mass and has the hearts of the aul wans. The former topped the poll in ’07 and the latter came last. I’m sure between them one will squeeze in…

  6. In all of this you have decent Fianna Fail party men now ready to go down with the Captain and the ship. Such is Bobby Aylward TD of Carlow-Kilkenny, who , it could be argued, had nothing to do with the bank disaster.
    Can the country afford to lose experienced working TDs like this, to be replaced by inexperienced and inarticulate people like Kathleen Funcheon SF of Kilkenny or Boyd Barrett and his SWPers anarchist Trotskists around Greater Dublin?
    Regarding the latter I could even see a post-election Fianna Fail supporting a Fine Gael government to keep them out and save the country from these militant hotheads who want to default on everything – including the sovereign debt.
    I could even see a far right movement organising to kick them out:-)

    God save Ireland!

    • “Boyd Barrett and his SWPers anarchist Trotskists” – FYI this is like calling someone a fascist libertarian or a Catholic Protestant but never let political knowledge get in the way of incoherent spluttering.

  7. But I think that the huge surge to Fine Gael and Labour shows that the people recognise this danger to the nation and that the SF & ULA Lefties will be squeezed between this and the Election.

    Fianna Fail leadership is now showing total exhaustion, lack of any direction, even breakdown, due to the enormous stresses and strains, as is shown by failure to even replace Dermot Ahern and Noel Dempsey a few months prior to an election by a Cabinet reshuffle.

    FF National HQ seems to be paralysed – or kept out of it. The Cabinet now seems to be entering the trenches, FF TDs who haven’t cut and run preparing for an Alamo situation individually , Cowen poised for his glorious Gotterdammerung!

    There are now no plans for the future of the Fianna Fail party, if any, after the election, by the current leadership.

    Yet I think that a post-election 35-TD Fianna Fail under Micheal Martin, with possibly John McGuinness as his Deputy ( they’re close, personally) , will eventually get back up and running as fast as next Autumn as an effective opposition party – especially if the cold dispassionate business-like McGuinness has anything to do with it.

    By next Xmas the people will be baying for the blood of whoever is in government. And by the next local elections in 2014 a re-organised Fianna Fail should be back on track –
    If they don’t break up!

  8. All I can say to Desmond Ftzgerald is:God bless your innocence!
    Remember that Sinn Fein is in a joint administration with the Democratic Unionist Party in a regional administration which is part of the British State. Sinn Fein has never definitively ruled out coalition with Fianna Fail and/or Fine Gael unlike the United Left Alliance.

    • Your point being? Just because the majority of the nationalist community are stupid enough to vote for the likes of SF doesn’t make it right, anymore than the majority voting for FF in the south, makes that right. Just because it’s in an administration up there doesn’t mean it should be in one down here and would information from the Irish government be safe or secure or would it be passed by SF officials to the North? Who would SF ministers report – the Taoiseach or the IRA chief of staff, or whatever he calls himself these days?

      I’m not disputing many people are naive and deluded enough to flirt with voting for SF but I’m hoping that when it actually comes to voting, they’ll cop on. The rest of us have a responsibility to not let voting for SF become an accepted norm, until SF explains what it did with the money it stole from banks, the protection rackets, the drugs, the prostitution rings and God knows what else, the links with all sorts in other countries, and also comes clean on its past, who did what and where those people are buried.

      Then come back and ask for a place at the democratic table.

      At the moment, people have the luxury of not having to choose who to vote for and when the election is actually called, I think people will focus more and drift back to the normal parties of Fine Gael, Fianna Fáil, Labour and Green with Sinn Fein still beyond the pale.

      A Fine Gael/Fianna Fáil government would work depending on which FF TDs are elected and if a complete clearout of the crony lot took place and the new TDs were not tainted by the past, and I can’t see that happening.

  9. But Colum, who had access to the information that ought to have alerted us to the madness? It wasn’t the opposition, it wasn’t the media, it wasn’t the elderly who had no reason to borrow, and it wasn’t the young who borrowed like mad on the basis that if they didn’t borrow now, they’d have to borrow more in a few months.

    The top bankers and the top politicians are to blame and removing them will go a long way to putting things right as the change at the top can filter down – whether Fine Gael and Labour have the ethics to implement the scale of change needed is doubtful but for different reasons to Fianna Fáil.

    It seems the public have finally got the message about FF after 80 years. But have they made their anger felt to FG or L enough that those parties ‘get it’; the evidence is that they have not because the policies coming from those parties at what they’ll reform is pretty pathetic.

  10. How far back would Desmond FitzGerald suggest we can go? He comments “until SF explains what it did with the money it stole from banks, the protection rackets, the drugs, the prostitution rings and God knows what else, the links with all sorts in other countries, and also comes clean on its past, who did what and where those people are buried”.

    John Regan’s fascinating account of the Cumann na nGael Free State Government 1922-32 – The Irish Counter-Revolution 1921-36 – shows that party leader WT Cosgrave was corrupted by money from big business. His son Liam, after the Loyalist (Ulster Volunteer Force) Dublin-Monaghan bombings of 1974, which killed 34 innocent civilians, made a state broadcast attacking what organisation? – the IRA! Not a dickie-bird about organisations which the dogs in the street knew were responsible, let alone the British state.

    With leadership like that from the top, no wonder the Garda “investigation” was such a spectacular failure.

    Fine Gael is a party steeped in state violence.

    Regrettably that did not stop Seán MacBride going into coalition with them in 1948 – if the numbers were right Gerry Adams and Enda Kenny would do a similar deal after the next General Election.

    Green Party TD Trevor Sargent says that after the 2007 General Election Enda Kenny asked him to sound out Sinn Féin Dáil leader Coaimhín Ó Caoláin on voting for the Mayo TD as taoiseach. Perhaps the odd Fine Gael supporter denies this – in the immortal words of Mandy Rice-Davis “he would say that, wouldn’t he”.

  11. Desmond, I really don’t want to continue off topic but I must respond to your access-to-information question. Only the wilfully stupid could have failed to see that as production closed and went abroad, building broke out everywhere; that houses were being built to house the people building the houses and the number unsold was rising; that there was a furniture store at every major roundabout etc. etc. Now, if everyday, ordinary fools managed to avoid being aware, I can forgive them. However, those PAID to think, speak, advise or manage are in a different category and should now move to the margins and be silent.

  12. In reply to Desmond Fitzgerald: I thought my point was obvious. If there is no insuperable obstacle to Sinn Fein being in joint administration with the Democratic Unonist Party at Stormont in the governance of a region of the British state following a war of 30 years duration, there can be no insuperable obstacle to Sinn Fein being in coalition withh Fianna Fail or Fine Gael.In my comment I did not advocate such a coalition

    I think that it is inappropriate to advocate particular points of view on this website as the site is dedicated to political reform and political analysis. We all analyse from our own political point of view and that is legitimate.In my case I have been opposing coalition between the Labour Party and parties of the left with Fianna Fail and FineGael since I was expelled from the Labour Party National Executive in 1970 having campaigned against the return towards coalition after the 1969 general election.
    Analysis and political experience tells me that Fianna Fail, Fine Gael and Sinn Fein will deny any intention of coalescing to-gether right up to the the next election but if the numbers are right afterwards this will change. If Sean McBride could stomach Dick Mulcahy as a minister and Mulcahy could stomach the former IRA chief of staff then —–
    Anybody who rules out the above possible outcome is an innocent abroad in politics.

  13. Before the moderator brings us all back on topic I cannot resist posting this quote in relation to the topic of Fine Gael, violence and democracy:

    “I appeal to the people to give the government a mandate, and not Mrs. Despard, Mrs. MacBride and those who are trying to bring in Soviet conditions. If we are elected we are going to put down people like these and put them in prison, and if they persist, and if it is necessary, we are going to execute them.” Desmond Fitzgerald TD (Cumman na nGaedheal), speaking at Graiguenamanagh, Co. Kilkenny, 31st January 1932. (‘Irish Independent’ 1st February 1932.

    • I don’t remember saying that, but 1932 was a long time again – also please, it should always be FitzGerald not Fitzgerald 🙂

      FitzGerald had passed away by the time of the first interparty government I think? So, we can’t be sure how he may have reacted to it – if the alternative was another FF government, he may well have supported joining with MacBride as he wasn’t a tribal Fine Gaeler?

      Comparing SF/IRA in the South now, or in the 1930s, with the North, now or at other times is not the same – it’s apples and oranges.

      But I can’t see a situation in the South whereby Fine Gael will be in the position that it’s only chance of government is to form some deal with Sinn Fein.

      I don’t believe Sinn Fein has offered any political reform policies, it has to tread carefully to balance what it does for Westminster, Stormont and Leinster House as it doesn’t practice what it preaches in any consistent form for the three parliaments.

  14. Listen here to an in-depth interview with Labour Leader Eamonn Gilmore on coalition options after the next general election – he rules out coalition with either Fianna Fáil or Sinn Féin, and rules in coalition with Fine Gael – suggesting, contrary to recent opinion poll evidence, that Labour could poll better than the party led by Enda Kenny – the only positive spot is a clear commitment to legislation on the Supreme Court X Case to partially legalise abortion following the recent European Court of Human Rights Judgment. Once again, Labour chooses the kamikaze option of coalition with the right – Gilmore’s party heads for the same black hole currently inhabited by the Green Party.

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