SUPPORT for the SNP has increased since the party’s stunning Westminster victory in Scotland on 7 May with the nationalists now on course to make gains in next year’s Holyrood elections.
The TNS poll of 1031 adults in Scotland aged over 16 showed that of those who expressed a party preference 60 per cent said they intended to support the SNP in the constituency section of the vote for the May 2016 elections to the Scottish Parliament.
This compares with the 50 per cent support the SNP received in Scotland in last month’s UK General Election and 45 per cent in the constituency vote in the 2011 Holyrood elections, when the nationalists won 53 of the 73 constituencies.
In the later TNS poll, Labour is second with 19 per cent, down from 32 per cent in 2011, while the Conservatives record 15 per cent (14 per cent) and the Liberal Democrats on 3 per pent (8 per cent).
The survey also found that almost half of those polled - 49 per cent - said they would vote to stay in the European Union, with 19 per cent saying they would vote to leave and 26 per cent undecided about the UK governments In-Out referendum on Europe.
Tom Costley, head of TNS Scotland, speaking about the polling results, said: “Clearly there is a long way to go until the Scottish Parliament elections, so it is too early to tell whether the rise in support for the SNP represents a continuing trend, or whether it reflects a “honeymoon” period with the party’s new Westminster MPs.”
“The strong support for continuing EU membership may reflect both this factor and the strong advocacy by Nicola Sturgeon, who remains a popular figure: the case for the EU has yet to be tested in the full-blown political campaign that will precede the referendum.”
New TNS poll for next May’s Holyrood elections has constituency vote
New TNS poll for next May’s Holyrood elections has regional list vote