LONDON — Brits would probably still vote to leave the European Union if they were given another opportunity to vote.
That’s according to a new opinion poll published by ComRes, which says 47% of people would vote for Britain to leave the EU, compared to 45% who would vote to stay in the 28-nation bloc.
The results of the survey indicate that the public is yet to feel a sense of “Bregret” six months after the shock Brexit vote.
It is worth noting though that the difference is slightly within the 2.17% margin of error.
An interesting takeaway from ComRes’ research is that Brits stand by their decision to terminate the country’s EU membership despite believing that doing so will leave them personally worse off in a financial sense.
Just 24% of respondents believed Brexit will leave them “better off” financially, compared to 44% who predicted they would be worse off, according to the pollster’s research. Nearly a third (32%) said they didn’t know.
These numbers give credence to the notion that economy wasn’t the most important issue for many people who voted in the June referendum, with concerns about immigration levels and national sovereignty taking priority.
Evidently, “take back control” was a very effective piece of political communication and continues to resonate with people half a year on from the referendum.
Another key finding is that the majority of people are against the government holding a second in-out referendum once the terms of Britain’s proposed exit have been established.
Over half of the respondents (53%) said “no” when asked should the UK have another referendum, including 25% of people who voted Remain in the June referendum. It’s evident that the majority of Brits would prefer Theresa May’s government to get on with the task of delivering Brexit rather than referring the question to them for a second time.
The Liberal Democrats, who have recently position themselves of the party of the 48%, have refused to vote in favour of the prime minister triggering Article 50 unless she commits to a second referendum. The party’s former leader and ex-deputy prime minister Nick Clegg said it would be “undemocratic” not to hold another referendum in an interview with Business Insider earlier this month. Labour MPs like Owen Smith also back another referendum.
The new data also illustrates that the well-documented polarization towards the EU between the generations is alive and well six months after the referendum. The poll found that 72% of respondents aged between 18 and 24 would vote Remain given another chance, compared to just 33% of people aged 65 or over.
- More than half of respondents (55%) said they expected immigration to decrease once the country leaves the EU, while 33% didn’t believe immigration would be affected by Brexit.
- The majority of respondents (47%) told ComRes that they expect Britain’s long-term economic prospects to be better outside the European Union, despite concerns about personal finance.
- The public is generally split on whether Brexit should mean Britain leaves the single market, with 41% saying Britain should retain its membership and 36% believing it should leave the free trade arena.
ComRes’ research is based on online responses from 2,048 adults, gathered between December 15 and 18.
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