Driven by data; ridden with liberty.
A suicide bomber attacked the Manchester Arena with a home-made device. At the time of writing, 22 people have been killed and 64 injured. The youngest known victim was eight years-old. Our thoughts are with the families of victims at this horrendous time.
(Video: BBC News)
We are currently in the middle of a general election campaign, which had been temporarily suspended due to this bomb. The political dimension of these attacks should not be dismissed, nor should be such a horrific attack be treated glibly only for any potential political effects.
For the sake of democratic discussion, we carry on.
The general election for the 40 seats in Wales is becoming rather interesting.
After two YouGov polls — sponsored by Cardiff University and ITV — showing a notable Conservative lead, there has been a massive Butler swing of eight points from Conservative to Labour, giving Labour a ten point lead.
The YouGov article (by Adam McDonnell) does highlight that the snap general election will have caused increased volatility in public opinion, as people go from thinking hypothetically about a distant general election to considering their vote in a real one looming in a few weeks.
It also highlights that in Wales, just like across Great Britain, we have seen a sharp return to two party politics, with the Labour and Conservative combined share equal to 78% in the latest YouGov poll. Similarly, Labour’s polling revival can be observed in this survey of Westminster voting intention in Wales.
Furthermore, there is the consideration that one of the last three polls could be outlying from real voting intention, straying outside the notional margin of error (as internet panel polls cannot have a formal margin of error calculation).
There is some evidence for this assertion, particularly when looking at the computer tables. In the previous Welsh Political Barometer poll, where the fieldwork was conducted between 5th and 7th May, there was no substantial gender gap in the respondents. For men, the headline voting intention was that the Conservatives were on 41% and Labour had 33%, or a Conservative lead of eight points. For women, the Conservatives had a headline share of 42% and Labour lagged by six points, on 36%.
In the most recent YouGov survey, conducted between 18th and 21st May, a massive gender gap in voting intentions has developed. For men, the Conservatives lead by one point, with the Conservative headline share equal to 39% and Labour on 38%. For women, there is a twenty point Labour lead, with the Conservatives on 30% and Labour on 50%.
Given a large analysis of voting intention recently conducted by YouGov, there was no substantial gender gap, though the Conservatives did have a polling deficit to Labour among young women.
As ever with political polling, we await the next poll to examine the trends.
The Welsh seats will be intriguing to watch on June 8th.