New poll suggests momentum with Yes as No campaign struggles with trust


  By Martin Kelly
A new poll published by Panelbase has suggested the No campaign is failing on the key issue of trust as the referendum campaign enters its final weeks.
The survey, which was commissioned by Yes Scotland, also shows support for independence increasing with backing for the Union declining.

The Panelbase poll puts support for Yes at 42% and No at 46% with undecided on 12%.  Once undecided voters are excluded, the standings are Yes 48% and No 52%.

The gap is the closest since the referendum campaign began and means a 2% swing is required in order for Yes to prevail in September.

The survey also reveals that Yes is moving ahead among men and women in terms of likely voting intentions on the scenario of protecting Scotland’s health service from the adverse impact of NHS privatisation south of the border.

Among Labour voters, 37 per cent intend to vote Yes – which equates to more than 230,000 Labour voters, in terms of their constituency vote in the 2011 Holyrood election.

Men are 52 per cent Yes and 48 per cent No; women 43 per cent Yes and 57 per cent No.  The 9-point gap in Yes support between men and women represents a significant narrowing of the gender gap compared to previous Panelbase polls – in July it was 14 points and in January 18 points.

The Scottish National Party welcomed the findings of the Panelbase poll which showed that Yes campaign leaders Alex Salmond, Nicola Sturgeon and Dennis Canavan are trusted to stand up for Scotland’s interests with positive approval ratings – whilst the No campaign leaders David Cameron, Alistair Darling and Johann Lamont all record negative ratings.

Yes trust ratings:
Alex Salmond +15
Nicola Sturgeon +20
Dennis Canavan +8

No trust ratings:
David Cameron -47
Alistair Darling -18
Johann Lamont -10

Commenting, SNP Westminster Leader Angus Robertson MP said:

“This poll is very encouraging as we enter the final month of the campaign.  The referendum is now on a knife edge, and Yes campaign leaders are trusted to stand up for Scotland’s interests – whereas the No campaign clearly have a major problem with both their negative message and their messengers, all of whom have negative ratings.

“Even Labour supporters say that they don’t think Alistair Darling can be trusted to stand up for Scotland’s interests.

“The Yes campaign is about the positive message of creating a fairer and more prosperous country – and a Yes vote is our one opportunity to protect vital services that we all value, such as the NHS, that are threatened by Westminster’s privatisation and austerity agenda.

“The No campaign has been all about negativity and scaremongering – so perhaps it is no surprise that David Cameron, Alistair Darling and Johann Lamont all record such negative ratings.”

An ICM poll for Scotland on Sunday published today also shows growing momentum for the pro-independence campaign, putting Yes on 45%, up 2% on the paper’s ICM poll last month and No down two percentage points on 55%.

Both polls show a two point rise in the Yes vote.

Blair Jenkins, Chief Executive of Yes Scotland, said of the Panelbase poll and the ICM poll in Scotland on Sunday: “With a month to go until the vote, these are very encouraging polls demonstrating real momentum.
“Yes is up two points in both polls – we are continuing to gain ground and success on September 18 is within Scotland’s reach. The ICM poll shows that those who were undecided last month – and have now made up their minds – have come to Yes by a margin of two to one.”