A quick update on EU referendum polling. The regular weekly ICM poll today has topline figures of REMAIN 42%, LEAVE 41%. This is closer than ICM have been showing of late – typically they’ve had REMAIN with a lead of around six points – but as ever, it’s nothing that could not be explained by normal sample variation. Wait to see if their poll next week backs it up (tabs are here).

The second poll is by Survation for the Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy group (i.e. UKIP’s group in the European Parliament). While this is newly released, the fieldwork was actually conducted a fortnight ago (30th Nov – 3rd Dec). Topline figures there are REMAIN 40%, LEAVE 42%. After their previous poll showed Remain ahead, Survation are back to showing Leave in the lead. (Full tabs are here).


68 Responses to “Referendum polling update”

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  1. Barbazenzero – “I respect your wish to exit the EU but would be interested in your view of what should be done in the event that the vote is close enough for NI, Scotland and Wales to have voted to stay in whilst England votes for exit.”

    In practice?

    It would be left to the dissenters to make the running.

    As others have pointed out, Wales is more eurosceptic than parts of England, so they won’t make a fuss.

    With NI – they could propose to go it alone. England will cheer because fully 25% of NI’s GDP is public spending courtesy of us. But will NI make a fuss for that very reason? Both sides are rather addicted to the financial support they are getting. Is the EU really worth risking the financial pain of a breakaway from the UK?

    Similar reasoning applies to Scotland. Cameron will wait for Ms Sturgeon to make the first move on another indy referendum. But she won’t do it unless she has a clear mandate from the Scots in the 2016 Holyrood elections. Which means she needs to put the possibility of a referendum in her manifesto. She’s been rowing back recently from the “we’ll leave if the vote on the EU goes the wrong way” thing. Probably because of the oil price which is now at $35.

    If she doesn’t put a referendum in her manifesto, there won’t be one regardless if the UK votes to leave. If she does put it in her manifesto, then she’s committed to it if the UK votes to leave, the timing is no longer up to her. The risk is that she gets a second No due to the oil price. She appears to be extremely cautious – so I think she’ll decline to go down that route.

  2. London Blade

    It’s worth pointing out that the two questions were asked of two different sets of people (matched halves of the total sample).

    It’s a useful example of how asking a question in a different format can produce a different outcome.

  3. Are the comments for this page bugging out for anyone else? They’re not always displaying properly for me.

  4. @Top Hat

    I’m having this issue too….

  5. Top Hat

    Fine for me at the moment.

    Sometimes, I see parts of the screen blacked out, but I presumed Anthony was just practicing redaction, in case he ever gets an FOI request.

  6. Top Hat/Catman – in what way?

  7. When I first logged on (about an hour ago) it said 50 comments, but no comments could be seen, there were no page 1 page 2 links, nothing.

  8. I had the same problem – stuck on 49 comments.

    Everything is fine now.

  9. @Anthony;

    Apparently there were 49 comments, but absolutely none of them displayed. This didn’t change until this 2nd page appeared. Clearing the cache didn’t seem to do anything.

  10. I had the same problem yesterday morning, but was fine by the afternoon.

    Simply didn’t load the comments.

  11. On that interesting voting age poll..

    perhaps we have the answer to why we can never get accurate poll results… the electorate are idiots…

  12. RE: voting change, I always find that a misleading question. Proportional representation isn’t a voting system itself, it’s a property of voting systems. If you asked people whether they favoured, e.g., FPTP vs. STV, FPTP vs. AV+, FPTP vs. MMP, FPTP vs. AMS – I’m not sure you’d find such overwhelming favour.

  13. I mean, as an aside, I support a change to a more proportional system myself, although I’m largely undecided between STV or closed list D’Hondt with a small top-up and would probably accept either, lacking a argument as to why one is much better/worse, but in general I feel asking people if they want a more proportional system is like asking people if they want current levels of spending on benefits to change – most will say yes, but they all have very different ideas in mind!

  14. CANDY

    Your post of yesterday at 19:25 UTC seems only to address the situation where England’s plurality for exit is large enough to cause departure from the EU. I suspect that possibility will be mentioned in most or perhaps all of the party manifestos for the three national GEs scheduled for 2016. I suspect also that the SNP will at least mention it as a possible referendum trigger, as may other parties.

    I was however more interested in the first possibility I suggested:
    If that results in an overall plurality for staying in, would you support England leaving the UK and exiting alone?

    You will, no doubt, have noted NEIL A’s suggestion that the vote would have to be very close for that to happen with which I agreed.

    What’s your opinion on what would ensue in that scenario?

  15. ANTHONY WELLS & MILLIE
    I had the same problem – stuck on 49 comments

    That also happened to me, starting around 19:00 UTC and I gave up trying until this morning thinking it might have been a database problem on the server. First thing today it was back but displaying wrongly. When I found similar problems on another site [non WP] I visit regularly, I removed and re-installed the Chrome [64 bit version] extensions I use which seems to have solved the problem for me.

  16. Top Hat, Neil, Barbazenzero –

    Did you still have the box to leave a comment yourself, or did the whole comment module vanish?

  17. ANTHONY WELLS
    Did you still have the box to leave a comment yourself, or did the whole comment module vanish?

    For me, I think the whole “content” area went completely blank and the URL included the #comments tag rather than the usual tag [which I’ve forgotten] which comes up if there are ZERO comments on the thread.

  18. @AW,

    Nope the only thing that was visible was your blogpost, and the little blue oblong bottom right showing the number of comments.

    The actual comments, and the submit comment box that is usually below it, were absent.

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