Redfield & Wilton Strategies’ latest Brexit tracker poll in partnership with UK in a Changing Europe, conducted before the recent Windsor deal regarding Northern Ireland, finds 61% of Britons say they would now vote to join the EU, five points more than in our previous poll in December and the largest number ever to say they would vote to join the EU in our Brexit tracker poll.
Altogether, if a referendum on re-joining the European Union were to take place tomorrow, 61% say they would vote for the UK to join the EU, while 39% say they would vote for the UK to stay out of the EU.
When those who say they don’t know how they would vote in such a referendum are included, 56% of respondents would vote for the UK to join the EU, 36% would vote for the UK to stay out of the EU, and 8% say they are unsure.
83% of those who voted ‘Remain’ say they would vote to join the EU, while 71% of those who voted ‘Leave’ in 2016 say they would vote to stay out. 21% of those who voted ‘Leave’ in 2016 would now vote to join the EU, while 12% of those who voted ‘Remain’ would now vote to stay out. Critically, 74% of those aged 18-24, all of whom were ineligible to vote in the 2016 EU referendum due to their age, say they would vote to join the EU.
In addition, a majority of 55% say they would support having a referendum on re-joining the EU in the next five years, against 27% who would oppose another referendum within that time frame. 79% of those who voted ‘Remain’ in 2016 would support holding such a referendum, while only 28% of those who voted ‘Leave’ would support holding another referendum.
By contrast, equal numbers of Britons say they would support (36%) and oppose (36%) the UK not holding a referendum on re-joining the EU in the next five years, with a clear divide between those who voted ‘Leave’ in 2016 (61% of whom would support not having a referendum) and those who voted ‘Remain’ (53% of whom would oppose not having another referendum).
However, British voters are divided on whether or not the question of the UK’s membership of the European Union is settled or not. A very narrow plurality of 44%—including 73% of 2016 ‘Leave’ voters—think the issue is settled and should not be re-opened, against 43%—including 66% of 2016 ‘Remain’ voters—who think the issue of the UK’s membership of the EU is not settled and should be re-opened.
As such, regardless of the public’s overall apparent willingness to support another referendum and to vote to re-join, most of the British public continues to feel the prospect of re-entering the European Union is unlikely in the near future: 43% think it is unlikely that the UK will apply to re-join the EU in the next ten years, including 52% of ‘Leave’ voters and 43% of ‘Remain’ voters. 28% of Britons alternatively deem it likely that the UK will apply to re-join, a position that is only slightly more common among those who voted ‘Remain’ (30%) rather than ‘Leave’ (25%) in 2016.
If the UK were to apply to become a member of the European Union again, a small plurality of 36% of Britons think it is likely—against 32% who think it is unlikely—that the Member States of the EU would accept the UK’s application to re-join. Respondents’ views do not vary significantly based on their 2016 EU Referendum vote, with 37% of ‘Leave’ voters and 35% of ‘Remain’ voters considering the prospect likely.