We’ve had two new polls in the last week here, each of them showing a radically different performance by the two top-tier parties. On 10 July we’ve had a Nimamedia poll (commissioned my Mladina weekly), which more or less echoed results of most previous polls by different pollsters (i.e.: Social democrats take the top spot, Janša’s SDS comes in second, while LDS, Zares and occasionaly the nationalists battle it out for bronze).
However, only a day later a poll a government-commissioned poll done by Parsifal Group showed a radically different result – SDS taking the top spot with 20,4 percent of the decided vote and SD coming in second with a “mere” 13,2 percent. Somewhat indicatively, though, both polls are surprisingly similar in recording the vote of the smaller parties. Call me paranoid, but I smell a rat
Anyways, neglecting the fact that we are dealing with a poll made and paid for by the government, two things become almost immediately visible:
One: even a government poll projects that a totally left-wing coalition (SD, LDS, Zares, DeSUS) will get as much votes (27%) as a totally right-wing coalition (SDS, SLS, NSi, SNS – 27,3). If we add Lipa and its 0,8 percent of the vore to the left-wing bloc, just for argument’s sake (I’m not saying they are left-wing), then the left bloc prevails again.
Two: According to government’s own poll, repeating the election result of 2004 (i.e.: forming a winning coalition) can only be possible with Zmago Jelinčič’s nationalists onboard. Then and only then can the existing coalition (SDS, NSi, SLS, DeSUS) with the addition of SNS form a rather comfortable if uneasy majority.
All of the above, however, must be taken cum grano salis. Polls commisioned by the government have a tendency to skew reality much beyond the acceptable and one could safely venture to say that the reality is much grimmer for the government of Janez Janša
Pengovsky’s projection: Despite the short relief the lates poll might provide to for the right bloc, it should actually sound general quarters, red alert, defcon 1 and whatever states of emergency there are. Namely, if your own pollsters can’t plausibly put you well ahead in the polls, then nothing will. So we will quite possibly see the Prime Minister venture more and more into the nationalistic and overly-populistic field of rhetoric, trying to chip off SNS as many votes as possible. However, one extremely undesired sideefect is Zmago Jelinčič thus becoming ever more acceptable for the centrist vote. Should Janša decide to go down that road and co-opt Jelinčič and his voters, he will pay dearly in a future not very far. But the main question remains: is the tide turning? Not for now. When other polls corroborate results of Pasifal, then we can start talking….
Elections 2008 Badge: Will be updaed during the day. The right bloc takes 56 percent of the vote this time around.
Poll data: If anyone feels like it, here is an MS Excel file complete with all the polling data and charts. It includes almost every published poll from February ’08 until present.
Wednesday, July 16th, 2008