A snapshot of tactical voting

A snapshot of tactical voting

We asked voters from the four major parties whether their choice was a vote actively for that party or a vote cast against another party. Interestingly Labour, Lib Dem and UKIP voters seemed to show similar voting patterns, with only two thirds saying their choice was purely a positive vote for that party.

Conservative voters are the most likely to be voting FOR their party

However, Conservative voters were noticeably more likely to say that their choice was a mainly positive one, with just over three quarters (77%) saying their vote was mainly for the party.

Tactical situations

To tease out these differences we presented the voters from each party with a different hypothetical situation in their constituency to see how they would vote in each given situation.

So for example, UKIP voters were asked to imagine they were in a seat where Labour or the Conservatives would almost definitely win. In this situation UKIP voters would have split out in the following way:

UKIP voters in a Conservative-Labour battleground

This shows that almost 55% of UKIP would still vote that way come what may, just under a fifth (18%) would vote Conservative and 11% would vote Labour, suggesting a small shift towards the Tories from UKIP voters in Tory-Labour battlegrounds.

In a different scenario, we asked Labour voters how they would vote in a constituency that would be won by either the Tories or Lib Dems:

Labour voters in a Conservative-Lib Dem battleground

Probably to the relief of the many Lib Dem MPs with Tory challengers, there is still some shift from Labour voters back to the Liberal Democrats in Conservative-Lib Dem battlegrounds.

Opinium Research carried out an online survey of 1,947 GB adults aged 18+ from 3rd to 6th February 2015. Results have been weighted to nationally representative criteria.