Labour Cautious in Ealing Seats Ahead of Poll Opening

Other parties battling hard for position in today's vote

Polls set to open for the UK General election
Polls set to open for the UK General election

July 4, 2024

Since the calling of the General Election, the polls have been consistently indicating Labour wins in all three Ealing seats but this does not mean the local constituencies won’t be keenly contested.

Below is a guide to what to look out for beyond the headline results and what each party might regard as success.

If Labour wins in today’s vote, its margin of victory in Ealing Central and Acton, Ealing North and Ealing Southall is likely to be taken by many as a measure of its performance at a local level. Defending big majorities, the party may struggle to maintain its vote share in the local seats ahead despite riding high nationally.

Each of the local seats also has intriguing subtexts including how the Greens and Reform perform. One polling company is predicting a second place for the Greens in one constituency with another saying that Reform will be the runner up in the same seat. Where their candidates finish really matters to the party because this can determine the resources committed to a seat at the next election.

The forecasts for local seats are derived using a method called Multilevel Regression and Post-stratification (MRP). It is used by pollsters such as YouGov and Electoral Calculus to estimate public opinion at a local level from large national samples.

This method is widely credited as providing the most accurate predictions for the 2019 elections but it remains to be seen if it has nailed the results in local seats. All of the analysis below was carried out before the polls opened.

Ealing Central and Acton is classed as a safe Labour seat by YouGov and the mid-range expectation for Rupa Huq’s share of the vote is 56.5% This would represent an increase Labour’s vote compared to 2019 although it would be down on 2019 when the Greens did not put up a candidate and recommended that their supporters voted Labour.

If this projection is correct, this would put Labour massively ahead of the Lib Dems, who have local councillors for some of the wards in the constituency, in second place on 15.2% and the Conservatives would get 10.5% Perhaps surprisingly, the Greens are not projected to get into double digits. Reform is put at 7.7% and the smaller parties are not anticipated by this poll to get a significant share of the vote.

Electoral Calculus is predicting a similar share of the vote for Labour in this seat but, unlike YouGov, put the Tories in second place with 15.6% The Greens are ahead of the Lib Dems in this poll in third. Reform gets 8.6% with other parties together only down for 2.9% of the vote.

YouGov has a mid-range for Labour’s James Murray’s share of the vote in Ealing North at around a half. The Conservatives are predicted to come second with 15% of the vote with Reform finishing ahead of both the Lib Dems and the Green candidate. Other parties including the Workers Party are predicted to get a total of 3.2%

Electoral Calculus also predicts a huge winning margin for Labour in Ealing North and a bigger vote share of 57.6% but has the Conservatives and Reform very close for second place with around 13% of the vote each.

In Ealing Southall, the constituency estimate from YouGov puts the mid-range expected Labour vote at 48.2% which is well below the 60% achieved by Virendra Sharma in 2019 and even further behind the 70%+ polled by the same candidate in 2017. However, these two elections were a bit of anomaly and, if YouGov’s forecast is correct, this would represent a return to the vote share achieved by Labour with Piara Khabra and in the earlier elections contested by Virendra Sharma.

The most striking aspect of YouGov’s poll for this seat is the second place predicted for the Greens who with the mid-range of their vote share at 15.8% The Conservatives are put in third place with just 12.1% ahead of Reform and the Lib Dems with a single digit share of the vote.

YouGov doesn’t seem to have picked up any indications of a strong performance by the Workers Party which it is predicting to finish at best sixth. With around of the fifth of the electorate Muslim in Ealing Southall, Gaza might have been expected to be an important factor but the MRP polling method used by seems to be discounting much impact for the party led by George Galloway.

Electoral Calculus has a much higher predicted vote share for Labour’s Deirdre Costigan up at close to 60% and has Reform in second place in Ealing Southall. The Greens are put in fourth position behind the Conservatives. This polling method also is not detecting any meaningful support for the Workers Party.

The official Labour campaign across the three seats has been low key but a senior member of the local Party in Ealing said to us, "Of course we will win both locally and nationally but don't believe the polls. The majority in Westminster will be well below the projections of the polling companies. We are likely to lose several seats because people, who really want a Labour government, have been led to believe that there is no risk voting for another party or not bothering to vote. In the three Ealing seats we are likely to see lower majorities due a strong performance in 2019. Plus our resources are being focused on key seats such as Uxbridge and Chelsea & Fulham."

Candidates in Ealing Central and Acton

SDP - Stephen Balogh
Independent - Julie Carter
Green - Kate Crossland
Labour - Rupa Huq
Workers Party- Nada Jarche
Liberal Democrats - Alastair Mitton
Reform UK - Felix Orrell
Conservative - James Windsor-Clive

Candidates in Ealing North

Independent - Helmi Alharahsheh
SDP - Leslie Beaumont
Workers Party - Sameh Habeeb
Reform UK - Leon Harris
Conservative - Maria Khan
Green - Natalia Kubica
Labour - James Murray
Liberal Democrats - Craig O’Donnell

Candidates in Ealing Southall

Workers Party - Darshan Azad
Independent - Sangeet Bhail
Independent - Joe Bhangu
Conservative - Georgie Callé
Reform UK - Steve Chilcott
Labour - Deirdre Costigan
Independent - Pedro Da Conceicao
Liberal Democrats - Tariq Mahmood
Independent - Niko Omilana
Green - Neil Reynolds
Independent - Jaginder Singh
Rejoin EU - Peter Ward

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