Bar chart fun

Conservative bar chartLib Dem bar chart

I think these both confirm that Labour start ahead. The Conservative second is based on number of Councillors, the Liberal Democrat second is the result at the last General Election, which is probably more relevant.

Amusing to see such similarities in the only two leaflets I’ve had though. Nice touch with the Punjabi on the Liberal Democrat leaflet.



  1. Anonymous said

    Having a go at Liberals and Tories but no mention of Labour. You woulnd’t be a Labour plant from the Tom Watson school of bye election dirty tricks would you? Not that you would admit it!!!!

  2. MatGB said

    Um, Anon? I just came here from a link elsewhere, and the text above does clearly state why those two leaflets are highlighter; it’s what he’s got.

    Yes, I’m a LibDem, but even if I turn partizanship spotting up to full I can’t see any in the posts thus far made.

    @the author: Excellent idea for a site, and good choice of host, I look forward to reading more over the next few weeks.

    The similarity of the design is because it’s a fairly basic necessity in all elections to squeeze the third party, LDs and Tories need to get the votes of the others in order to win; I’m hoping that the LDs do a better job but you can never be sure.

  3. Obviously both the Tories and LibDems are trying to play to their strengths. The Tories did well in the 2006 locals and their bar chart acurately reflects actual councillor numbers.

    The LibDem chart is a lie. They are trying to talk about the 2005 GE results. Only Labour got 23,000 votes so their bar should be exactly twice as long as the LibDem bar as they got 11,500 votes. The Tories were not far behind the LibDems at the 10,000 mark so the real picture would have one long bar with the 2nd and 3rd parties neck and neck behind.

    The Tories are presenting their more recent local results honestly. The LibDems are lying about theirs.

  4. Kevin Larkin said

    The Tory bar chart is equally mendacious. There are 9 wards and 27 council seats entirely within the current Ealing Southall boundaries. The Tories have inflated this to 33 by including small parts of two other wards (Ealing Broadway and Greenford Broadway) that are split between Ealing Southall and the other two Ealing constituencies.

  5. Mendacious? Hardly! Even if only part of those wards are within the constituency, all of the councillors who represent them do represent people withing Ealing Southall. That’s the fundamental premise of an electoral ward.

    Even if those areas were excluded (which would not increase accuracy at all), The bar chart would not be significantly changed. The fundamental premise, that Conservative support was much stronger than Lib Dem support in the most recent elections, holds true.

    The same cannot be said for the Lib Dem bar chart, which uses a false zero without identifying that in any way and does not site its sources. Both omissions make that bar chart statistically meaningless as well as downright misleading.

  6. ian Ridley said

    The point of bar charts on leaflets is to highlight the 1-2-3 positions in a clear manner that will be noticed by voters – many of whom don’t choose to spend all their time pouring over the fine detail of election leaflets. It’s got to be snappy, stand out and be accurate.

    It’s not an exact mathematical graph but it is accurate because it does indeed show the relevant 1-2-3 positions. We would not even need them at all if we had STV.

  7. […] Southall Watch has a demonstration of Liberal Democrat and Conservative bar charts. You be the […]

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