Brexit means Brexit - but what do voters think?
Yesterday, YouGov released a comprehensive set of polling into the public's views on the Brexit process. It's jam-packed with interesting data points (tables), and we'd like to give you our round-up of the 10 most important things to take from this poll.
1. Post-referendum, Leave holds onto its lead. The graphic below shows the support for Brexit in the country: before 23rd June, voters were asked whether or not we should exit the EU, while after the referendum date, the question has become ‘do you think Britain was right or wrong to leave the EU?’ In this latest poll, ‘Leave’ has a 4 point lead – exactly the amount it won by in the referendum. It seems, then, that there really hasn’t been much buyer’s remorse.
2. But Remainers haven’t really changed their minds. We’ve collected together all of YouGov’s Brexit polls since the referendum and put them into the graphic below. What is pretty obvious is that Remainers overwhelmingly still think that we were wrong to leave the European Union, though there has been a teeny weeny (technical term) fall in this figure. The general hardness of opinion on the Remain side helps explain why the Leave side has the same lead now as it managed to get on polling day.
3. People are generally satisfied with Theresa May’s Brexit strategy…or, at least, they say they have confidence in her ability to negotiate what she wants. An impressive 47% of voters have a lot or a fair amount of confidence in the Prime Minister, with 38% expressing little or no confidence. Unsurprisingly, voters’ perception of the Prime Minister’s capabilities breaks along party and Remain/Leave lines. For example, 60% of Remainers have little or no confidence in May, while 70% of Leavers say they do have confidence in her. And while 84% of Conservative voters are happy the the PM can deliver, only 20% of Labour voters feel the same way.
4. …But aren’t so happy with the government. Only 21% of people said that they think the government is conducting its negotiations well. A majority – 53% - said it wasn’t.
5. And despite more voters being in favour of Leave than Remain, a large minority believe that we’ll be economically worse off as a result of Brexit. With 29% of people thinking we will be better off after Brexit, 40% - and increase of three points on a couple of weeks ago – think that our economy will be damaged by Brexit.
6. A majority of voters also doubt the other EU nations will agree to May’s Brexit deal. 56% of respondents to the poll thought that EU27 – the other EU nations – won’t subscribe to the Prime Minister’s plans for Brexit. Only 20% of voters think that the other member nations will agree with Theresa May.
7. Voters overwhelmingly believe that Brexit will reduce immigration…A clear majority of 55% think that Brexit will mean less immigration into the country. While 32% of voters think it won’t make a difference, only 3% of voters think that Britain’s exit from the European Union will result in increased immigration.
8. …And even Remainers are in favour of controlling immigration: While it’s no surprise that 94% of Leavers want Britain to have control over EU migration, 54% of those who voted to Remain would also like to see the government take control over EU immigration policy.
9. Leavers and Remainers agree on other issues, too. For instance, intelligence sharing with other EU nations, guaranteeing the rights of other EU citizens, and maintaining an open border with the Republic of Ireland.
10. But there remain important disagreements between both sides. Membership of the single market, of course, is a lightning rod of an issue: while 82% of Leavers want us out of the market (with only 3% wanting us to stay in ), Remainers are far less clear: 44% think it would be wrong to leave the Single Market, while 34% think we should. Among the totality of voters, however, 57% think we should leave the Single Market, with just over one fifth – 21% - saying we should stay a member.
Of all her tasks when she made her speech, Theresa May had to take the country with her; and from this first poll since the Prime Minister laid out her Brexit objectives, it looks like she's just about managed to do so. But can it mask the voters' lack of confidence in her government, or, indeed, their lack of confidence in the willingness of EU27 to co-operate with us? Only time will tell.
That's it, folks: these are the top 10 points you should take away from this poll. As ever, we hope you enjoyed it and are enjoying the new interactive graphics we're slowly but surely building up on the site. If you'd like to see all of our interactive graphics in one place, be sure to check out our Data Hub - if you have any suggestions, do let us know. If you'd like to chuck some coins our way, we'd be grateful!