The first poll of the Yousaf era points to a shrinking SNP lead over Labour

A poll by Savanta for The Scotsman of 1,009 people between 28th and 31st March shows the First Minister’s public approval rating is up six percentage points to a net -12%, although he lags behind his predecessor Nicola Sturgeon, which boasts a net rating of 10%, and Scottish Labor leader Anas Sarwar (-1%) and former rival Kate Forbes (-2%).

Among SNP voters, Mr Yousaf’s popularity rose 19 percentage points to a net 20% compared to the previous poll in February, while Ms Forbes’ approval rating fell 15 points to 5%.

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However, in every electoral test listed in the poll, the SNP’s lead over Labor has been shrinking.

In Westminster, likely Mr Yousaf’s first major election test as SNP leader next year, the SNP vote fell three points to 39%, while Labor voted up one point to 33%.

In Holyrood constituencies, the SNP vote fell four points to 39%, while Labor rose two points to 32%, while the list vote in the Scottish Parliament resulted in SNP support rising one point to 33% and rising Labor led by three points to 30%.

Elsewhere, the Conservatives also enjoyed gains in all three votes.

In Westminster the party’s vote rose two points to 19%, while in Holyrood the constituency vote rose one point to 19% and two points to 18% in list voting.

Regarding independence, 48% of those who voted most strongly said they would support leaving the UK, while 52% said they were against.

When undecided voters were counted, 47% of respondents did not support the split, while 45% did and eight were unsure.

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SNP MSP Fiona Hyslop responded to the poll: “The SNP is focused on Scotland’s priorities and that is why we continue to lead the polls.

“Leading the leadership of new First Minister Humza Yousaf, who has already seen his personal approval ratings rise, according to today’s poll, we are outlining a positive, ambitious vision for Scotland’s future.”

She added: “As an independent country we can use Scotland’s immense natural and human resources to build a more just and prosperous nation.

“No wonder union parties are so afraid to give the people of Scotland a say in their future – and that is why the SNP is determined they will have that choice.” The first poll of the Yousaf era points to a shrinking SNP lead over Labour

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