LABOUR could win the majority of Scottish seats at the next Westminster election “by default” due to a slide in support of the SNP, extensive new polling and analysis has suggested.

Keir Starmer’s party could win as many as 31 seats in Scotland – despite not having gained ground in terms of vote share – according to a poll of 10,102 Brits by Focaldata under redrawn constituency boundaries.

What does the poll say about a UK-wide General Election?

Analysis of the polling run under a multilevel regression and post-stratification (MRP) system suggested that Labour could win a massive landslide, with 470 Westminster seats to the Tories on just 129.

Under this baseline scenario, the SNP were predicted to win 26 seats while other parties took 25. The SNP won 48 seats in the last General Election in 2019.

The analysis, from campaign group Best for Britain, also modelled what could happen to the seat projections under different scenarios.

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If the Tories’ competitors Reform UK were to stand aside in marginal seats, as UKIP and the Brexit Party did in 2017 and 2019, then Labour could win 401 seats to the Conservatives on 201.

Under this scenario, the SNP were projected to win 25 seats while 23 go to other parties.

A third scenario redistributed the undecided voters according to how their education profile suggested they may vote. This gave the SNP 28 seats, Labour 370, and the Tories 232.

The final scenario, combining the Reform UK “regressive alliance” with the predicted vote patterns for Don’t Knows, suggested that a hung parliament was the “likely” result.

Under this final model, Labour were projected to win 316 seats to the Conservatives’ 286. The SNP were predicted to win 22, and other parties 26.

What does the polling say about Scotland?

In a section looking specifically at Scotland, Best for Britain said that Labour is “looking strong in Scotland”.

It said Labour would pick up 31 seats in Scotland – from a redrawn constituency total of 57 for Scotland (down from 59).

However, this was driven by a fall in the SNP’s vote share (from 38% in autumn 2022 to 30% in spring 2023) and not by any gains in the Labour vote. Starmer’s party’s share remained steady on 28%.

The Best for Britain analysis goes on: “Deeper investigation as to how vote shares have changed since our autumn 2022 MRP strengthens the assumption that Labour is benefitting from a large transfer of votes from the SNP to the ‘Don’t Know’ category, rather than a rise in Labour’s own vote share.

“The share picked up by ‘Don’t Know’s’ is higher than the share picked up by Labour, for an equivalent fall in SNP share.

“This means that in many cases, Labour’s lead in Scotland exists by default, rather than because they’ve directly won a large number of votes from the SNP.”

The analysis is based on a survey by pollster Focaldata, which asked 10,140 people in Great Britain between April 20 and May 9 which party they would vote for if a General Election were held tomorrow.

Does the poll say Labour will win the next General Election?

Labour’s vote share was projected to be around 35%, down from the 42% it was predicted last autumn.

Best for Britain chief executive Naomi Smith told a press briefing in Westminster: “Labour’s lead does look healthy but their margins are falling everywhere.”

Smith warned that the public “can’t assume that there’s going to be this landslide”.

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“What we’re seeing in our data is that it is up for grabs. Lots of factors could come together to mean that there isn’t necessarily going to be a change of government.”

Luke Tryl, UK director at the More in Common group, said: “You’re in a situation where people at the moment are going to Labour by default, not because they love the Labour Party.

“If things start to get a bit better, and people aren’t convinced by that positive offer from the Labour Party, I think things become more challenging.”

You can find Best for Britain’s full analysis here.