Is this 1974? Are we about to see a one term Conservative PM defeated in an election in which Labour runs a better campaign?
Or is it 1992 – and there are ‘shy’ Tories just confounding all the technology and analysis current polling models can capture.
Certainly the comparison with 1974 stops quickly. Ted Heath went to the country on a “who governs Britain” ticket after two years of industrial strife when the lights – literally – went out.
Cameron has a wildy different set of fortunes with the economy performing well.
But the Tories wanted to make this election about leadership.
With such low expectations the Labour leader could only confound them.
Ed Miliband started over 20 points behind the PM in the leadership stakes. – but he has narrowed the gap significantly. Not to overtake Cameron but to get much closer.
However the gap still remains – it is at least 10 points – and the question for me is – despite Miliband’s superior campaign – is he now polling at the edge of his capabilities?
Is it the case that when voters go into the polling booth next week – there is still too much doubt about just how Miliband would be as PM.
Latest FT Populus focus group data in key marginals seems to suggest the doubt remains.
So is this 1992 again. Are the ‘shy’ Tories set to define this election?
Some of them include voters who have been toying with UKIP for the past 2 years. Will they come ‘home’?
On current numbers, it’s a deadlock.
Given the SNP surge – Cameron needs to get to around 290 seats – to form a government with the Liberal Democrats and DUP.
For Labour, the hurdle rate might just be 275 with an SNP deal by deal, vote by vote approach.
Can Cameron get his polling back to 290? He has been there before in this campaign.
Watch that UKIP vote for the coming week and watch out for ‘shy’ Tories who are perhaps set to confound the pollsters.
This article originally appeared in the Huffington Post.