Polls of Deception. One poll bucks the trend shows inconsistencies in data

There was one poll published on Union news site ,that was not well sourced, that claimed five parties would obtain 3% or more of the vote and enter into parliament. This poll goes against the trend and all other qualitative polls in that it shows a slender win to the opposition forces.

Poll Results
Party of Regions (PoR) 27.4%
Bloc Yulia Tymoshchenko (BYuT) 18.3%
Our Ukraine (OU) * 11.0%
Communist party of Ukraine (CPU) 4.1%
People’s Self-Defence (PSD) * 4.5%
Socialist Party of Ukraine (SPU) 2.9%
Natalie Vitrenko Bloc (NVB) 2.8%
Lytvyn Blok (LB) 2.7%

Progressive Poll Graph – Percentage of Vote

Progressive Poll Graph – Translated into Parliamentary Seats

There are a number of inconsistencies in the UNIAN poll analysis.

The poll has indicated support for the Lytvyn Party at 2.7% yet last week Lytvyn had announced that he would not be standing for election.

The poll also shows The Socialist Party of Ukraine on 2.9% and Natalia Vitrenko block on 2.8%. The error of margin of most polls is around 2% and errors are more prevalent at the bottom end of the poll. Should either the SPU and/or NVB exceed the 3% threshold then the outcome would most certainly change. A narrow win would not serve well for any government. What Ukraine needs more then anything is political stability and a marginal “opposition” government would not deliver a good outcome.

The Threshold Factor

Another factor that needs to be taken into consideration is that the 3% threshold is calculated on the number of votes cast and not the number of potential voters. This could very well see threshold margin shift a 0.2-3 percentage points and as such according to the poll data published by UNIAN 6 to 7 parties could be represented in the next Ukrainian parliament. (Sadly polls do not indicate the participation rate or clarify if the data is percentage of voter as opposed to opposed to actual voters. The graph below demonstrates the possible shift in the result)

Progressive Poll Graph – Based on the poll being percentage of eligible voters as opposed to actual voters

From an analytical point of view this question only comes into play when you have a party/group who is within 0.3-4 percentage points of the three percent quota threshold but it is significant. Some electoral systems base their threshold on a percentage of the formal vote (Votes that indicate support for a party as opposed to a blank vote) In Ukraine’s case the threshold percentage also includes informal votes in its calculation. But if a high percentage of eligible voters do not vote (the non-participation rate) the percentage ratio shifts.

I also expect that there will be intense battle to try and persuade some of the minor parties to join forces in an attempt to cross the artificial 3% threshold barrier. Party Viche (I personally like their policies and their leader comes across as informative and rational). Party Viche accounts for just under one percent of the vote which could prove valuable to other parties bordering on the threshold or who want to increase their percentage and representation.

The polls wont give any real indication of the fold up until the party lists are finalised.

There is three months to go until the election and it is said that two weeks is a long time in politics let alone three months. Personally I believe there will be six parties entering the next Parliament. I have not written the Socialist party of just yet but it will be a close battle. Natalia Vitrenko position is unknown, at this stage, whether an alliance can be formed with her anyone’s guess (God help anyone who manages to form such an alliance)

What is interesting the most about current lot of polls is that there has been little shift in the fortunes of the president’s party Our Ukraine. One poll had Our Ukraine out polling Yulia Tymoshenko but they were reliant on the formation of a broad coalition with the dissident breakaway People self-defence group. It is expected that they will secure sufficient percentage of votes to stand alone and unencumbered. If they do not form an alliance with Our Ukraine then Yulia will be in a better place, should the opposition win government to become prime-minister. That is unless Our Ukraine buddy up with party of regions to cut the Communists out of the game, which is not beyond consideration as foreign notes predicts.

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