Election Predictions: When Will Britain Vote?

Election predictions are fun to make and even more fun to debate with your mates once the vote has been counted. But what if we told you there was a way to predict the results of an election months, even years, in advance? Would you believe us if we told you there was a way to do that? Well, there is a way. And it’s actually remarkably simple. All you need are a few minutes of your time and some old-fashioned number crunching. Let’s have a look, shall we?

The Basics Of Polling

At its most basic, political polling is the process of asking people what they think about a particular subject and then using that information to predict the election results. In the 2019 general election, for example, we were asked if we wanted a Conservative or Labour government. The results of this poll will be used to predict the outcome of the upcoming election in June.

Although the way we ask questions has changed over the years, the fundamentals of polling have not. This is one area of political science where you can always find comfort in the fact that nothing has changed. Let’s have a look at the basics of political polling.

The Difference In Opinion

In a nutshell, you can think of the difference in opinion as the difference between what people said in the poll and what they will actually do on election day. We’re not quite sure what the polls were like in the days of old, but with modern technology at our fingertips we can see quite clearly the difference in opinion between the predictions and the results.

In the last few elections, the difference in opinion has been negligible. In 2015, for example, polls predicted that the Conservatives would win 317 seats, the Labour Party 266 and the Liberal Democrats 23. In the actual election, the Conservatives got 318 seats, the Labour Party 262 and the Liberal Democrats 23. In 2017, the gap was so small that it was within the margin of error. The Conservatives were predicted to win 304 seats, the Labour Party 281 and the Liberal Democrats 24. In the actual results, the Conservatives won 306 seats, the Labour Party 272 and the Liberal Democrats 23.

These examples should serve as a warning to anyone who thinks the opinions of the people can be trusted this year. It seems that people are becoming more and more cynical about mainstream politics as we know it. Only time will tell if this newfound cynicism will prove to be a blessing or a curse for the country.

Variables That Can Change The Game

Although we’re certain that the results of the 2019 general election will differ from the polls, we cannot be sure exactly how much difference they will make. There are a number of variables that can affect the final results, including:

  • Turnout
  • New Voters
  • Widen Margins
  • Crossover Voting
  • Hidden Voters
  • Region
  • Education
  • Age
  • Ethnicity
  • Family Affair
  • Religion
  • Income
  • Households With Children
  • Labour Vs Tory Voting

These are just a few variables, but they can all change the game. For example, if an election was held today and everyone voted according to the latest polls then the Conservative Party could end up with as few as 12 seats. That is a mere 3% of the total vote – hardly anything to write home about. But if turnout was low, or if pro-Brexit voters bucked the trend and turned out in droves then the results could look very different.

How To Make An Election Prediction

So, how exactly do you make an election prediction? The good news is it’s not as complicated as it seems. All you need is a few minutes of your time and some old-fashioned number crunching. Let’s have a look.

Firstly, you need to decide what kind of election you want to predict – i.e. Is it a national election or a regional one? –- and when it is scheduled to be held. You can always find the date on the government’s website.

At this point, you need to look at the party you support and see how well it does in the polls. If you want to be more specific, you can always look at national demographics to see how the country as a whole is performing. Knowing the overall result is important for a couple of reasons. First of all, you can use the results to get an idea of how ‘popular’ your party is, and secondly, if you support a losing party you will have to find a new place to hang your green jacket.

Now that you know when the election is, it’s time to start making some predictions. If you want to be really accurate, you should probably start making them a few months in advance. This will help you get a feel for how things are going and make you feel more confident when you are giving your opinion on the matter. Who knows – maybe you will be proved right and your party will end up winning after all!