The European election result is now confirmed – and we can compare the fates of the respective parties not only with how they did in the equivalent contest five years ago, but also with our final Welsh Political Barometer poll, which was published on the Monday before polling day.
So how did the parties do? And how also did our final poll do in relation to the actual result? The table below provides the total number of votes cast across Wales for each party, their share of the vote, the change in this share since 2014, and the difference between the vote share won by each party and what was suggested by the final Barometer poll.
|Party||Votes||% Vote (Change from 2014)||% Difference from Barometer Poll|
|Brexit Party||271,404||32.5 (+32.5)||3.5|
|Plaid Cymru||163,928||19.6 (+4.3)||0.6|
|Liberal Democrats||113,885||13.6 (+9.6)||3.6|
|Change UK||24,332||2.9 (+2.9)||0.9|
There will be time enough for detailed analysis of the performance of the various parties over the following days and weeks. Regarding our poll, I think – and particularly considering that sampling concluded on the Monday before the election, rather than going as close to polling days as possible – that the Welsh Political Barometer performed rather well. For only two parties was their estimated support different from their final vote share by more than the standard ‘margin of error’ of three percentage points: our final poll over-stated Brexit Party support, and under-stated that for the Liberal Democrats, by almost exactly the same amounts. But we got the position of the four leading parties correct, and were also right in suggesting that it would be very close between the Conservatives and the Greens for fifth place in Wales.
The mean average error in estimates of party vote shares was only 1.55 percentage points. That, by anyone’s standards, is a very good performance. Well done to our colleagues at YouGov, who conduct the polls – and, indeed, to everyone at team Welsh Political Barometer.