Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Opinion poll confirms what we already knew: Catalonia wants to be an independent state

I don't often wade through polling datasets in the Catalan language for this blog, but it may be worth doing it in this particular case.  As I've noted a couple of times over the last few weeks, the result of the Catalan referendum makes it phenomenally improbable that the anti-independence side would have won if they hadn't boycotted the vote.  You'd have to believe in an ultra-high turnout and that practically all of the extra voters would have voted No - which stretches credibility beyond breaking-point, given that we know large numbers of Yes supporters were prevented from voting by the police.  The only other possibility to cling to is that there was widespread falsification of results - essentially the mirror image of the wild conspiracy theories about the Scottish indyref result that unionists here love to scoff at.  Judging from the reports of observers, there in fact seems to be compelling evidence that the vote was extremely well and fairly conducted under the circumstances.  And yet, in spite of the compelling mandate for independence staring them in the face, the BBC website has taken to innocently finishing articles about Catalonia with a variant on the following: "Catalans are split on independence.  An opinion poll earlier this year showed 41% in favour, 49% against."  The pretty obvious subtext being that outdated opinion polls are more authoritative than actual referendum results.

Even if you believe that the BBC's favourite poll was bang-on accurate at the moment it was conducted, is it really so implausible that public opinion has changed since then, allowing us to reconcile the poll result with the referendum result?  Of course it's not.  Scottish public opinion proved extremely volatile over the final few weeks of indyref campaigning, and we didn't have the provocation of state authorities telling us it was illegal to vote and attacking us with truncheons and rubber bullets if we attempted to reach a polling station.  The new Catalan poll today confirms that there has been a significant swing in favour of independence since the pre-referendum period, sufficient to give Yes a majority.

I, més concretament, vol que Catalunya esdevingui un Estat independent? (And, more specifically, do you want Catalonia to become an independent State?)

Yes 48.7% (+7.6)
No 43.6% (-5.8)

The fieldwork dates were 16th-29th October, and with Don't Knows excluded the results are roughly: Yes 53%, No 47%.  Percentage changes are from the same polling organisation's figures in June.

The 'less specific' question asked by the poll is a multi-option question on various constitutional options - a bit like Scottish polls that chuck in a 'Devo Max' option.  Outright independence is the most popular single option with 40.2% support.  It's true that if you combine support for all of the options that involve Catalonia remaining within the Spanish state, you reach an overall majority - but, crucially, one of those options is Catalonia becoming a state in its own right within a federal Spain, which is clearly not on offer in the real world.  That explains why there is a pro-independence majority on the binary Yes/No question.

16 comments:

  1. Thanks - very helpful to have some more recent insight than the out of date poll. Does this one have figures for the potential Catalan general election in December? There is one showing a strong Junts Pel Si lead here https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catalan_regional_election,_2017

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  2. Saw a print copy of The Times today which quoted a poll which had Indy at 33.5% and Union at 58%. Taken, I think, circa 23-25 Oct. Seemed to be from a Spanish source.
    A bit strange that less support than before independence, unless it's to do with the economic frighteners. But how should various polls be evaluated in this sort of atmosphere
    and with the apparent swing of a newspaper like El Pais to the hard right?

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    1. Those numbers are wildly implausible given that 38.5% of the entire registered electorate voted Yes (and more would have done so without the police violence). Probably the poll asked a dodgy question.

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    2. http://www.sigmados.com/solo-un-335-de-los-catalanes-son-partidarios-de-la-independencia-segun-encuesta-de-sigma-dos-para-el-mundo/

      It's not clear whether they had done 2 full scale samples in Spain and in Catalonia or if they are just using a sub-sample for Catalonia.

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    3. Oh, well if there's a possibility it's just a subsample, that could easily explain it.

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  3. "I don't often wade through polling datasets in the Catalan language .." might just be the worst pick-up line ever. Just saying. It should also be noted that Mr. Kelly of Scot goes pop is better at correctly reporting poll results in obscure foreign languages than the BBC and most major ENGLISH language newspapers are for polls reported in actual English.

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    1. Mr Palmer, you live in the past with a wish to introduce the past on the present.. You are an enigma with nothing to offer but do carry on.. You will die as we all will. But do keep a sense of humour if you have one! Hopefully your opinions will never allow humans to mount the back of lorries and to oblivion.. But we do not know the real Palmer do we?

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    2. JTRIG JTRIG agent provocateur

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    3. Jock o the North Dole ScroungerNovember 1, 2017 at 10:43 AM

      We hate the English even more than the Romans and the PFJ.

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  4. "JTRIG agent provocateur?"

    Who the heck is JTRIG, and I have no idea who or what PFJ is either.

    If you are all going to talk in code, fine. The audience for the below the line (btl) comments will, I predict, dwindle.



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    1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joint_Threat_Research_Intelligence_Group

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    2. Noah's getting worried. Not!!

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  5. Poor wee Knickerless the Tartan Tory does she employ tax powers or keep blaiming the Blue Tories for austerity.
    The Jockos need to stop opening sweetie wrappers in their pockets and take the money oot of their pockets and pay for their services.
    The English taxpayer will not carry you anymore. And the Sinn Fein IRA wanting the British to subsidise their devisive Irish language instead of public services is not on.

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    1. We huns in the mother of all parliaments will no longer support you lazy sweaties. Gaelic bad. Jockos tight, huns good.Irish bad

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    2. Jocko impersonator on 24 hr duty for the great cause. Always a laugh.

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    3. JTRIG agent provocateur

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