SNP lead shrinks as Labour narrows gap - Ipsos/STV poll

New poll by Ipsos' Scottish Political Monitor - run in partnership with STV News - finds SNP hold a seven point lead over Labour.

SNP supporters have signalled a shift towards voting Labour at the general election, a new poll suggests.

Ipsos’ Scottish Political Monitor, run in partnership with STV News, found the SNP remains out in front on voting intention for this year’s Westminster ballot, with a lead of seven points over Labour.

But that is down from a 12 point lead in May 2023 and a ten point lead last November.

Although the SNP remains the party most trusted by the Scottish public, trust in Scottish Labour has increased across a range of issues, including the NHS and the economy.

Ipsos interviewed a representative sample of 1,005 adults aged 16+ across Scotland between January 25 and 31.

UK General Election voting intention

Voter preferences are broadly similar to Ipsos’ previous poll in November 2023, with the SNP on 39% (-1 since November), Labour on 32% (+2), the Conservatives on 14% (-1), the Liberal Democrats on 6% (unchanged), the Green Party on 4% (+1) and 4% supporting other parties or candidates (-1). Scottish Parliament voting intention.

The SNP is projected to win 40 seats at the next UK general election. Scottish Labour would take 13 seats, while the Scottish Conservatives and the Scottish Liberal Democrats would each win two seats in the House of Commons.

The results are based on Electoral Calculus’ seat predictor model and reflect a change in parliamentary constituency boundaries ahead of the next election.

Scotland has been allocated 57 constituencies for the 2023 Review, two less than at present.

Emily Gray, managing director of Ipsos in Scotland, commented: “These results underline that while the Labour Party is making considerable headway in Scotland, the party’s leadership should not be complacent about the SNP as an electoral force.

“Humza Yousaf’s party still has a lead on voting intention for both Westminster and Holyrood elections and is the party that the Scottish public trust most to manage the NHS, the economy, education and the cost of living crisis.

“The direction of travel will worry the SNP, as Labour has been gaining ground across a range of policy issues while trust in the SNP has been on the wane.

“Given the profile of marginal seats in Scotland, even small changes in vote share can make a big difference to the final result – which means there is still much uncertainty for the parties at this point in an election year.”

Scottish Parliament voting intention

The SNP has a nine point lead over Labour on Scottish Parliament constituency voting intention, down from a 14 point lead in May 2023 (+12 in November 2023).

“Again, voter preferences for the Holyrood constituency vote are broadly similar to November, with the SNP on 39% (unchanged), Labour on 30% (+3), the Conservatives on 14% (-1), the Liberal Democrats on 7% (-1), the Green Party on 6% (+2) and other parties and candidates at 5% (-1).

The SNP leads Labour by just two points on regional list voting intention, down from a seven point lead in November 2023.

Headline voting intention figures estimate the SNP gaining 33% (unchanged), Labour on 31% (+5), the Conservatives on 13% (-2), the Green Party on 11% (+1), the Liberal Democrats on 7% (-1) and other parties and candidates on 5% (-2).

Independence

The poll shows a small lead for Yes. Among those likely to vote either Yes or No in an immediate referendum, 53% say they would vote Yes and 47% No.

Trust in the parties

After more than 16 years in government, the SNP remains the most trusted party across a range of issues. However, Labour has narrowed the gap on all four issues asked about in our poll.

  • 32% trust the SNP most to manage the NHS in Scotland, while 27% trust Labour most on this issue (a rise of 7 points in the proportion choosing Labour since May 2022).
  • 32% trust the SNP most to grow Scotland’s economy, while 23% trust Labour most on this issue (+7 points).
  • 31% trust the SNP most to manage education and schools in Scotland, while 26% trust Labour most on this issue (+7 points).
  • 30% trust the SNP most to tackle the cost of living crisis, while 23% trust Labour most on this issue (+3 points).
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