- YouGov online poll: Remain 41 / Leave 41
- ICM online poll: Remain 45 / Leave 45
- Online surveys continue to tell a totally different story about how the vote will turn out
Two more online polls said that the EU referendum race is neck-and-neck.
This may seem like a coup for the “Leave” campaign but this is just indicative of a recent emerging trend — online surveys are more likely to present the race between Remain and Leave as super-tight.
Meanwhile, phone polls, analysts, and bookmakers are all saying that Remain is comfortably in the lead.
YouGov — which last week admitted that it altered its sampling methods because it had previously over-represented UKIP supporters — published its latest poll yesterday. It said that Remain and Leave were tied on 41%.
ICM released its latest online survey yesterday, too. Like YouGov, it said that there was no gap between those who want Britain to remain as an EU member state and those who intend to back a Brexit (45%/45%).
However, phone polls published by Ipsos MORI, ORB and ICM last week all gave commanding leads of up to 18 points to Remain.
The discrepancy between phone and online polls doesn’t appear to be going away anytime soon.
The likelihood of a Brexit looks slim — if you are to go on all recent polls and assessments that are not conducted online.
But according to the online polls, there is a still a chance of a Brexit.
This discrepancy is one of the few sources of hope available to Brexiteers with just four weeks to go until voting day.
However, whether online polls are to be trusted or not has been a topic of heated debate in the world of polling over the last week.
YouGov’s former president Peter Kellner published a blog which said that YouGov’s online surveys continue to overstate Brexit support despite changes to its methodology.
The research company said that it was actually phone pollsters who were inaccurate because they had been surveying too many graduates — a social group that is generally more likely to vote Remain.
Number Cruncher Politics polling analyst Matt Singh maintains that the actual probability of Britain voting to leave the EU on June 23 is really low. His latest forecast said that the chances of a Brexit were just 17.4%.
Polls show Remain +5.7
Britain’s betting companies are offering similar odds. William Hill and Ladbrokes, for example, are offering odds of around 7/2 of a Brexit taking place next month. This translates to a probability of 22%.
If the major polling firms continue to say very different things about how the vote will turn out, then this means that only some of the firms have a chance of getting it right.
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