What is Labour’s electoral advantage now?
LAB, even with their Scottish problem, can probably secure most seats as long as they are within 3 points of the Tories.
— Mike Smithson (@MSmithsonPB) March 11, 2015
Is that right? A few months ago, it would have seemed perfectly plausible, but the rise of the SNP must surely have dented Labour’s advantage somewhat. In 2010, Labour won 42% of the vote in Scotland, picking up 70% of the seats. If the current polls are correct, it looks like they might get around 30% of the vote but maybe only 25% of the seats (some forecasts make the situation much worse for them). So, that has to have eroded some of their vote efficiency.
Taking a look at the forecast model at May2015.com, and plugging in a 3% Tory vote share lead, we get the following projection:
So, Labour 38 seats adrift. It’s worth noting that their model is extremely bullish about the SNP’s chances, but even if you give Labour 15 more seats in Scotland, they are still not getting very close to the Tories in seat numbers.
The model at electionforecast.co.uk is currently projecting a 3.4% advantage for the Tories on national vote share, resulting in a 28 seat deficit for Labour.
Still, for those who agree with Mike, you might be tempted by the 4/1 on offer at Ladbrokes that the Tories win most votes, but Labour end up as the biggest party. You can find all of our latest general election odds here.