Saturday, July 30, 2016

YouGov poll finds Scottish majority against independence unchanged since Brexit vote

After the 2015 General Election and the 2016 EU referendum I take opinion polls with a bucketful of salt. However, they are all we have, and changes in the same poll, especially if they form part of a pattern, can tell us whether there is any sign of movement.

Yougov have just released a poll on Scottish Independence which shows almost the same small lead for "No" over "Yes"  a month after the Bexit vote that they had found before the EU membership referendum.

The lead for "No" (e.g. to remain part of the UK) is not enormous and suggests that if there were to be another referendum it might well be close. However, it does appear, if you will pardon the expression, to "scotch" the suggestion that there has been a massive swing towards Scottish independence from the UK since the EU membership vote. (The change is only about one percentage point, well within the margin of error.)

Yougov say here that

"Fully 46% of Scots say that they would rather live in a Scotland that was still part of the UK post-Brexit, against 37% who would rather live in an independent Scotland that remained in the EU.

(These numbers translate to 55% vs 45% once don’t knows are stripped out)."

In other words, pretty much the same result as in the previous Independence referendum.

The idea that Britain voting to leave the EU would make Scotland more likely to vote to leave the UK was based on the assumption that Remain voters who wanted Scotland to be part of the EU would have to switch to supporting Independence so that an independent Scotland could re-join the EU.

However, Yougov add that

"Support for the union is buttressed by the fact that 43% of those who voted to Remain in the EU last month want Scotland to stay in the UK after Brexit."
(YouGov interviewed 1006 Scottish adults between 20th and 25th July 2016)


Jim said...

Scotland "remaining" in the EU following brexit and a vote to leave the UK, is not, and never was an option.

Following Brixit, Scotland will no longer be a member of the EU (though it never was, no more or less than Cumbria was a member of the EU. It was a region of an EU Member State. Though since the member of the EU has left then this is no longer the case.

Now, Scotland could have another referendum to leave the UK, but it could not opt to "REMAIN in" the EU. It could only ever opt to "JOIN". This is indeed an option for Scotland, supposing it meets all the criteria required under Article 49 TEU, and the other 27 Member States agree to it.

Jim said...

Note - I am not suggesting the UK has "Left" the EU at this point. I am simply pointing out that Scotland can not remain in following Brexit.

Chris Whiteside said...

I get that. You get that. Most people get that.

Unfortunately there are certain people who don't.