Reasons (for most) to be cheerful. State of the polls.

The Tories can be cheerful.

Current opinion polling is still giving them a healthy lead. Electoral Calculus is predicting a Tory majority with a 60% probability. Over the last week or so, despite a number of gaffes, they’ve remained rock steady in the polls, hovering around 40% and retain a 12% lead over Labour.

On the other hand that’s less than the 17% lead they enjoyed at the same stage of the 2017 campaign. Moreover, three weeks before that election Electoral Calculus was even more confidently predicting a Conservative majority, with a 76% probability. And we all know what happened then.

Labour can be cheerful.

Even though they’re well behind, the gap is actually less than at the same point in 2017 and the Labour vote has not fallen as far as the Tories. In addition this week has seen a small but consistent upward creep in Labour’s polling figures. Of all the parties Labour has (a little) momentum. [Groan]

On the other hand, in order to convert this into a majority they will need to repeat the surge that occurred in 2017. Most of that took place in the last two or three weeks of the campaign. Will it happen again? Twice in a row is a big ask.

The Lib Dems can be cheerful.

They’re polling far higher than they were at the same point in the 2017 election, 7% up on an admittedly very low 9% then. If this can be focused onto their target seats gains look inevitable.

On the other hand their support in the polls has slipped from its peak in mid-October, although over the past week it seems to have stabilised.

The SNP can be cheerful.

Their polling in Scotland is holding up in the 40-50% range and well ahead of the Tories. In fact YouGov put their lead a week ago at 20% over the Tories and 30% over Labour, as compared with 8% and 10% respectively at the 2017 election.

Two parties might be less cheerful this weekend. The Brexit Party vote is generally sliding while the Green Party’s is stagnant at best or perhaps also slipping. Which is all a bit strange, given that this is supposed to be THE Brexit election or THE climate change election, depending on your viewpoint.

But things are likely to change. This Thursday nominations close, we get a better picture of exactly who is standing where and the polls start to become more meaningful.

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