Live updates

Advertisement

Labour candidate apologises for Tippex comments

A Labour election candidate has apologised for anti-English remarks he made online nine years ago.

Huw Thomas urged throwing tippex on cars. Credit: labour.org.uk

Huw Thomas, who's standing in Ceredigion, suggested throwing Tippex over cars flying England flags during the 2006 World Cup. He said they showed that Wales had been infiltrated by immigrants. Today he said he apologised wholeheartedly and deeply regretted his words.

William Hague: Conservatives have delivered jobs in Wales

William Hague says the Conservative-led Coalition Government should be credited with delivering jobs and economic growth for Wales.

Meeting campaigners in Cardiff, he told ITV News that an outright Tory majority at the General Election would provide "economic security".

William Hague is retiring from the Commons at this election

You can now associate the Tories with many more jobs in Wales. There are 52,000 more people in work in Wales than there were five years ago.

That is creating the opportunity for everybody in the future.

There are 20,000 more businesses in Wales than there were five years ago at the time of the last General Election.

– William Hague
William Hague spoke to local businesses and members of the public in Cardiff

Advertisement

  1. Prof Roger Scully

What the latest Welsh poll means for each party

Credit: YouGov/ITV/Cardiff University Jan 19-21, Sample: 1,036

Party politics in the UK currently seems more uncertain and turbulent than for a longtime –maybe more than it has ever been. We’ve seen big recent movements in the support levels of several parties, including the rise in Wales of UKIP and now a notable increase for the Greens. Yet, at the moment, a direct projection of poll findings produces only very small changes in terms of who wins which seats.We could be on course for an election in which lots of things change, but the basic fundamentals of which parties represent us in parliament are hardly disturbed.

Overall, what does this poll tell us about the prospects for each party, as we enter the final hundred days of campaigning?

For Labour, this poll is at least modestly encouraging. A persistent feature of the opinion polls in Wales during 2014 was the decline of Labour support: they finished the year well below the point that they started it. Our new poll seems to suggest that Labour have stopped, and may even have begun to reverse, this erosion in their support. This poll doesn’t put Labour on course to gain as many seats as they would need to help secure a parliamentary majority for Ed Miliband. But it does place them slightly ahead of where they were in 2010, and indicates that Labour are currently on track to make at least some ground in May.

The Conservatives have surprised many observers with the robustness of their support levels since 2010, holding steady at a level only slightly below the vote share they won in the last general election. Here is yet another poll that supports this pattern. Although the poll projects the Tories to lose the ultra-marginal Cardiff North, on these figures they ought to retain all their other Welsh seats. And it puts them in with a very good chance of taking Brecon & Radnor from the Liberal Democrats.

For theTories’ coalition partners, the Liberal Democrats this is yet another in a long series of disappointing polls. They have at least managed a very small up-tick in their support levels. But this poll still indicates that they have lost more than two-thirds of the support that they gained in Wales in 2010, and with the rise of the Greens they are now in sixth place! There seems to be no substantial improvement in their position in sight. The best the party can do for now, it seems, is to try to hang on to the three seats they currently hold. But even that will now be very difficult.

For Plaid Cymru this poll will be at least a little disappointing, putting them as it does a little below their vote share in 2010. One piece of slightly better news for them comes from a question where YouGov asked respondents how certain they were to vote in the election: Plaid supporters were the most likely to indicate that they were absolutely certain to vote. This poll suggests that Plaid may well be able to hold their existing seats. But they are nowhere near threatening the sort of breakthrough that their sister-party is doing in Scotland.

For UKIP, this poll may also be mildly disappointing. Perhaps the big story in Welsh politics in 2014 was the UKIP breakthrough. Our latest poll indicates, as have many of the recent Britain-wide ones, that UKIP’s forward momentum may well have been checked, at least for the moment. Nonetheless, UKIP have not yet gone into a clear reverse.They are currently on course to get lots of votes in Wales in May. But the party still remain up against it to convert this significant public support into a win in any specific constituency.

Finally, what about the Greens? This poll shows them making significant ground in Wales, relegating the Liberal Democrats to sixth place (as they did in last May’s European elections). As with UKIP, however, it is currently very difficult to see the Greens converting such support into actually winning a seat anywhere. But the more proportional voting system used for devolved elections makes a Green presence in the National Assembly after 2016 look increasingly likely.

More detailed analysis of this new poll will be provided in several posts over the next couple of weeks on my blog, Elections in Wales (http://blogs.cardiff.ac.uk/electionsinwales/).

The WelshPolitical Barometer is an unique polling collaboration between ITV Cymru Wales,the Wales Governance Centre at Cardiff University, and the leading polling agency YouGov.

Professor Roger Scully is Professor of Political Science in the Wales Governance Centre at Cardiff University. The poll for ITV and the Wales Governance Centre had as ample of 1,036 Welsh adults and was carried out by YouGov on 19-21 January 2015.

Labour support up slightly, Greens now in fifth place

Credit: YouGov/ITV/Cardiff University Jan 19-21, Sample: 1,036

The latest Wales Barmometer Poll, for tonight's Sharp End, shows Labour up 1% on the last poll in December and no change for the Conservatives. UKIP are down 2% and Plaid Cymru have slipped 1%. The Lib Dems are 1% up but have been pushed into sixth place by the Greens, who are up 3%.

More on this poll on tonight's Sharp End. And more detailed findings on line later tonight and in the morning.