When I was a child, which was many years ago, if somebody was thought to be a bit mad they were said to be up the pole.
I have just read in the Gibraltar Chronicle the latest opinion poll carried out amongst the Rock’s electorate and can’t help wondering if “up the poll” applies here.
It reports that the “pro-government newspaper” 7-Days says the ruling GSD will romp home with 32.73 per cent of the vote with the GSLP – Liberal coalition on 18.18 per cent.
Now I have been a Gibraltar watcher for 18 years and I can’t ever remember there being that wide a gap between the parties. Indeed in recent outings to the ballot box it has been a matter of several percentage points dividing the two.
Apparently 440 people were sampled which given the size of the Rock’s electorate is a good number. The same poll shows 37.27 per cent undecided which also has me scratching my head.
There will be one major change when Gibraltar goes to the polls either this year or next. It is expected that the veteran GSLP leader and former chief minister, Joe Bossano, will step down and that another younger blood will head the party. The most likely new leader is Fabian Picardo although Gilbert Lucudi might dispute that. Interestingly whilst this poll said 8.18 per cent favoured Joe Boss as chief minister, 6.36 preferred Fabian Picardo against the 31.98 per cent of the incumbent Peter Caruana. Thirty-five per cent didn’t know.
Now a cynic might say, so that’s me off the hook, that given that the poll was carried out by 7 Days it was merely a distorted campaigning piece for the GSD. May be so – but in recent elections the Gibraltar daily Panorama has been uncannily accurate in its polls – and it is in the opposition camp.
I have certainly not detected any such massive public opinion swing since the last elections or that the Gibraltar voters are so undecided on who to vote for. However I do acknowledge that if Joe Boss does step down from the leadership of the GSLP then it will mark as big a sea change in Gibraltar’s politics as Margaret Thatcher resigning the leadership of Britain’s Tories – and that could factor in the electorate’s indecision.