Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale and Tweeddale

The winner in 2010 was David Mundell (Conservative). The votes cast for the four main parties were as follows:

PartyVotes
SNP4945
Labour13263
Lib Dem9080
Conservative17457

The 2011 Holyrood election was conducted using different constituencies, but we can calculate the equivalent Westminster result. We can do something similar for the independence referendum result, mapping the Yes votes to SNP votes and the No votes to Labour, LD and Conservative votes according to their distribution at the last UK election. If we do this, the results were as follows:

Party20112014
SNP1975221473
Labour1914312611
Lib Dem46078633
Conservative1265016598

The latest opinion poll by YouGov (8th-9th April) gave Labour 25%, the SNP 49%, the Tories 18% and the Lib Dems 4%. If we apply the swing implied by these figures to the 2010 results for this constituency, we get:

PartyVotes
SNP18300
Labour5461
Lib Dem2242
Conservative18054

Lord Ashcroft conducted some constituency polls earlier this year which seemed to show that the swing to the SNP was 4% greater in Labour-held seats (and as a consequence smaller in seats held by the Tories and the Lib Dems.) The 2010 winner in this seat was the Conservatives, so we should apply a smaller swing. If we do this, we get:

PartyVotes
SNP16464
Labour7297
Lib Dem2242
Conservative18054

Finally, another opinion poll has shown that voters will to some extent vote tactically in seats where there is a clear opponent to the SNP. This seat was won by the Conservatives in 2010, and this party is still the SNP's main opponent if we apply uniform swing. We should therefore expect tactical voting:

PartyVotes
SNP19124
Labour2846
Lib Dem897
Conservative21190

This prediction is the best we can do at the moment. This blog therefore predicts the constituency of Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale and Tweeddale will be won by the Conservative candidate.

The size of the predicted majority is so small, however, that SNP activists should by no means give up – this seat is very much winnable!

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