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Here's the spike...

Betsan Powys | 18:10 UK time, Monday, 19 April 2010


The last post referred to the Liberal Democrat "spike" in support in the UK-wide opinion polls over the weekend after Nick Clegg's debate performance. Well, tonight we have the clearest indication of how sharp that spike is in Wales - and it's enough to make the other party leaders' eyes water.

The ITV/YouGov poll of voting intentions, which carried out its fieldwork in Wales between April 14-17 (the debate took place on the 15th, before you ask) has come up with these results, with difference from March figures in brackets:

Labour 33 (down 4)
Conservative 23 (down 6)
Plaid Cymru 9 (down 5)
Liberal Democrats 29 (up 17)

Now that's what you call a spike. Month on month, it's frankly jaw dropping.

These ups and downs are easy to judge, what's harder, of course, is to translate them into real gains in terms of seats on May 6. Certainly, Swansea West, Newport East and Wrexham would all come squarely into play if the spike is maintained, as well as keeping a firm grip on the existing seats. But as the Liberal Democrats know more painfully than almost any party, there's not necessarily as large a spike in seat numbers as there is a spike in overall support.

You can hear the reactions from the candidates for the four main parties in Montgomeryshire on Wales Debates tonight at 10.45 on BBC1 Wales. Don't expect anyone to get too carried away here, but something would certainly seem to be shifting, and the sands of time are running out fast.

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