December 23, 2009

Grim polling news for the BNP...how sad, how very sad

This article was submitted by one of our readers, Iliacus. We welcome any contributions from our supporters (as long as those contributions conform to the law and are in reasonably good taste). Please send your articles to us via email.

A major opinion poll by Ipsos MORI was published at the weekend. Polls, of course, need to be treated with caution, and it's never wise to read too much into a single set of figures, but MORI is a reputable pollster and there is some interesting information to be found - especially in the detailed figures. And the news is pretty grim for the BNP!

The base polling figures for the minor parties run UKIP 4%, Greens 3% and BNP 2%. Of course, when you get down to figures like this there is a significant margin of error. The number of people responding is low, and the risk of sampling error is high, but the basic message is simple. None of these parties have any sort of widespread, national support in the context of a general election.

Regional breakdowns are even more subject to sampling error, since the numbers involved are smaller still. For the BNP their 'best' region is the Midlands (4%), with 1% recorded in the South and the North. Support shown in London was so low that it failed to register - technically it was 0%, though obviously that doesn't mean that nobody will vote BNP in London at the general election. But what it does suggest is that, in the context of a general election, the BNP will struggle to poll above 2-3% across London as a whole. It certainly isn't encouraging news, for example, if you were a prominent BNP member who had decided to look for a London seat in which to stand ... thinking perhaps that the party's best chance was in that area ...

MORI also breaks down responses by age group. The BNP polls 4% in the 18-34 age group, 2% among the 35-54 age group. For over-55s their share is less than 1%. Their apologists might claim this as evidence that the BNP was "the party of the future", but there are two flaws to such an argument.

Firstly, the under-35s are far less likely to turn out to vote; turnout is highest among over-55s, the very group where BNP support is weakest. Secondly party loyalty is weakest among young voters; strongest in older voters. So the BNP is strongest among voters who are less likely to vote, and most likely to change their minds and perhaps drift away. The BNP is weakest among voters who are most likely to vote, and who are less likely to switch (e.g. to the BNP).

There are some further interesting findings:
  • Social Group : BNP support is 1% in Social Groups A, B and C1 - professional, managerial and skilled; 3% in Social Groups C2, D and E - unskilled, unemployed, economically inactive.
  • Housing Type: In social rented housing BNP support reaches 5%; it's 3% in the private rented sector, 1% in owner-occupation.
There is no categorisation for educational achievement, but there is a breakdown by newspaper readership. I've not noticed such a breakdown previously and it's worth listing in full:
  • Amongst tabloid readers: Con 41%, Lab 34%, Lib Dem 14%, UKIP 5%, Green 3%, BNP 2%.
  • Amongst broadsheet readers: Con 42%, Lib Dem 25%, Lab 24%, Green 4%, UKIP 3%, BNP 0%.
Yes, that's correct. They couldn't find a single BNP supporter who read a broadsheet newspaper. Are we surprised? No.

So, to summarise (with tongue firmly in cheek!). For success the BNP needs a constituency in the Midlands; with a high proportion of under-35s; who live in social rented housing; are in social groups C2, D and E; and only read tabloid newspapers. And even there they would only just climb above 5%!

Seriously, there will be areas where the above demographic combines with one or more of the following - an active local BNP group; incompetence/ idleness in the mainstream parties; a particular local issue which benefits the BNP. And where that happens, on a very local basis, the BNP will poll well above their national levels.

None of this polling means that we can relax, or that we can ignore the danger of BNP progress at the general election. But what it does mean is that despite the election of two MEPs, despite Question Time, despite all the boasting, despite the lies and distortions in the popular press playing to the BNP agenda; despite all this the BNP have failed to make any significant progress in winning the hearts, minds and - especially - votes of the vast majority of the British people.

28 comments:

Arfer Daley-Griffin said...

"Yes, that's correct. They couldn't find a single BNP supporter who read a broadsheet newspaper. Are we surprised? No."

Because broadsheet readers tend to be intelligent.

Dave T said...

Although possibly not THAT sad. :)

Happy Christmas Iliacus.

NewsHound said...

DRUNKEN EDL YOB FINED FOR INCESSANT SWEARING AT THE POLICE: -

http://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/news/s/1187229_edl_yob_fined_for_swearing_at_policeman

NewsHound said...

LATEST: GREEN PARTY RALLY TO DEFEAT THE BNP IN BARKING BY FIGHTING JUST THE LOCAL INSTEAD OF THE GENERAL ELECTION: -

http://socialistresistance.org/?p=780

Anonymous said...

Nicely done Iliacus, thank you.

Anonymous said...

Great article, but what this really means is that we need to fight EVEN HARDER to make sure the defeat the BNP are likely to suffer in 2010 will be as total and demoralising for them as possible.

The BNP know they're going to do badly under "1st past the post" so they'll focus their efforts on places like Barking and Stoke and its in those places particularly they need to be taken to the cleaners....

LET'S GO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Also be aware that if they are really routed they will increasingly drop the "respectable" posturing and turn increasingly violent, so we need to be ready for that

Anonymous said...

good post. I am worried about the accuracy of those figures, but as you say there are problems with polls (opinion not people from Poland) Whenever I see BNP stalls or pictures of meetings I would say that they have a high proportion of over 55s and I think this is where much of their support actually lies.

ex-fascist said...

There is another positive to be taken from these figures.

It would appear that whilst the larger part of this very modest support base is amongst the young, most of the BNP's membership would appear to be middle aged.

This suggests that the BNP's membership is largely historical (old NF people and suchlike) and that they are not converting what limited new support they have into actual membership.

Merry Christmas to anti-fascists everywhere.

Mark Smollett said...

You're a bloody good writer Iliacus. How much is ZOG, Searchlight, UAF, Lancaster Unity paying you?

Anonymous said...

" I see BNP stalls or pictures of meetings I would say that they have a high proportion of over 55s and I think this is where much of their support actually lies."

I agree. The average BNP member seems older than those in any previous fascist party. This can be a strength and a weakness. Older people are less inclined for direct action making the "no marches, no punch ups" policy easy to maintain and enforce. They will also have access to more disposible income (very good for somebody like Griffin). However, they are also tactically very conservative and stuck in their ways and new, dynamic thinking is hardly likely to come from them. They are willing to be led by the nose by the leadership.

Anonymous said...

My husband and two sons work in banking, my husband in the city, and sons in Canary Wharf. In one office alone, most of the people my husband knows are voting BNP. And the people he knows on other floors are rife with BNP voters. My son’s story is mostly the same; there are many of their friends voting BNP. They are 34 and 37 as are many of their friends. I don’t know where all this comes from, because it doesn’t seem to match the people where we live either. We live in Chigwell which is quite near Ilford. Most of our neighbours are voting for them, they voted Tory last time the same as us. We used to vote Labour. They would never admit voting BNP in banking for obvious reasons. My neighbours wouldn’t admit to it either. They are terrified at what has happened in Ilford, as white people have left in droves because of high crime and a feeling of alienation. How do you know how many people are voting for them if they won’t admit it? And if you look at their meetings on their web-site, they all seem to be the very ages you have dismissed. How many of you read the broadsheets? We read Times, Mail and Express. Broadsheets are too awkward on the train.

Anonymous said...

Which is why the new fascist party on the block the EDL have goosestepped in with Seik-heiling glee!!!

jenny said...

Wouldn't surprise me if the EDL choose to march in Barking before the elections, to boost fascism in the borough!

Anonymous said...

"You're a bloody good writer Iliacus. How much is ZOG, Searchlight, UAF, Lancaster Unity paying you?"

Ha Ha - Boy, I wish ZOG was paying us! I can barely afford to pay the gas bill this month - There's no money in this anti-fascist lark, just the feeling that we are doing something right.

BTW, ZOG??? What's the ex-king of Albania got to do with anything?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/King_Zog

iliacus said...

Mark Smollett :

"How much is ZOG etc etc ... paying you?"

I'm on standard LU rates Mark - that's £0 0p per 1,000 words.

:-)

Anon at 5.08pm

Yes I'm not entirely convinced by the figures in two areas :-

I think there may be a broad understating of BNP support, possibly because people are ashamed of admitting their support - but I don't think it's a major effect. For example, across London it might turn their 0.5% to 2%, but it's not going to transform their prospects!

I was rather surprised by the figures for housing tenure. At face value the findings - 5% in social housing, 3% in private rented, 1% in owner-occupation - might match the 'stereotype' of BNP support, but as we know stereotyping can be very, very dangerous.

In my experience BNP support tends to be highest in two types of area - rough social housing [which is reflected by MORI], but also in a certain type of modern, low-cost (relatively), owner-occupied housing [which is not reflected by MORI].

It may be that the former tend to be mouthy in their support (hence showing up in polling); the latter tend to speak in 'code', and deny ANY suggestion that they may be racist (and probably don't show up in polling).

Anyway,
Many thanks for the kind comments,

and Happy Christmas to you all

(except nazi trolls !)

Anonymous said...

can we have another fugly competition in time for christmas. It was hilarious last year. I'm sure there are some new faces we can use?

Antifascist said...

'My husband and two sons work in banking, my husband in the city, and sons in Canary Wharf. In one office alone, most of the people my husband knows are voting BNP. And the people he knows on other floors are rife with BNP voters.'

That's the biggest load of bollocks I've read in a long time. If your 'husband and two sons' really believe the BNP is in any way sympathetic to them, they're idiots. As anyone should know, the BNP has been banging on about bankers for ages - just because they know a good bandwagon when they see one, and the party has made it pretty damn clear that it hates them and the damage they've done (as do most of us). Apart from the 'string em up' type of knee-jerk reaction to tabloid attacks on bankers, the BNP has NOTHING of any consequence to say about banking or the economy. Just today, Bonkers Barnes had this to say:

'For instance we would use a High Pay Commission to establish wage level and bonus limits on bankers'

And so say all of us. If your banking menfolk are thick enough to believe they or the country would thrive under the BNP, they should be booted out of their jobs ASAP.

Antifascist said...

'can we have another fugly competition in time for christmas'

I don't think there's going to be time, I'm afraid. I've got an awful lot of ghastly pictures of Nick Griffin (including some wild animated gifs) though, if you'd like those as a consolation prize. ;-)

Anonymous said...

That's a shame, as we are all looking forward to a Fugly competition.

Are you sure you cannot change your mind, Antifascist?

Anonymous said...

"My husband and two sons work in banking, my husband in the city, and sons in Canary Wharf. In one office alone, most of the people my husband knows are voting BNP. And the people he knows on other floors are rife with BNP voters."

Bring on the bankers' bonuses tax … and make it 100%.

"We live in Chigwell which is quite near Ilford." No real Chigwell resident describes it as quite near Ilford. As Antifascist said, this post is a load of bollocks.

iliacus said...

I think Anon who claims the whole of Canary Wharf, Chigwell and all points east are voting BNP has been reading too much Griffin and Darby spin.

Let me tell you a little story.

A few years ago the BNP stood in a byelection in my home town. They claimed it was a very close election between them and Labour (who were defending the seat). They claimed:

that they were being applauded in the street;
that people were flocking to vote for them;
that they would be fielding a full slate of candidates (19) in the annual set of elections;
that parents were offering their virgin daughters to bear the candidate's children.

[One of the above is actually something I've just made up - can you tell which?]

And what actually happened? They came a distant third in the byelection. And in the following elections they fielded not 19 candidates, not 15, not 10, not even 5 ... they actually fielded ..... nil.

Or maybe our Anon friend is really a troll.

NewsHound said...

FAKE REVEREND WEST SHUNNED BY GENUINE CHRISTIANS: -

http://norfolk.unitywebring.com/?p=1158

Benny said...

Possibly the most revealing anti-EDL video on the net:

http://nottmstopbnp.wordpress.com/category/uncategorized/

Anonymous said...

that they were being applauded in the street;
that people were flocking to vote for them;
that they would be fielding a full slate of candidates (19) in the annual set of elections;
that parents were offering their virgin daughters to bear the candidate's children.

[One of the above is actually something I've just made up - can you tell which?]

Applauded in the streets, my arse. LOL

tony said...

I've been a lurker on here for a long time and I would like to say thank you too everybody involved in running the site and all the contributors.
It is always fascinating, informative, funny when it needs to be and very rarely wrong about stuff going off in all the far right groups in this country, Europe and around the world.
The next few months are crucial.
If we can stop the BNP making any significant breakthroughs in the up coming elections I really think they will fracture.
The first cracks are starting to appear with the defections to the NF, the hilarity that greeted the accounts from all sides and all the other stress's and strains they are under.
Thanks. T

Antifascist said...

That's very kind of you, Tony, thank you. Believe me, all praise is very much appreciated. :-)

Anonymous said...

Ilford is 20min drive to Chigwell.

Anonymous said...

Well let's wait and see who votes for the BNP. We can't know how many will. London is lost to the BNP and they won't bother with most of it. However, the City is a unknown quantity as loads travel into London from the burbs.