Britain's Future

December 1991 poll for The Times on Britain's future relationship with the European Community

MORI interviewed a representative quota sample of 1,076 adults aged 18+ at 54 constituency sampling points across Great Britain. Interviews were conducted face-to-face, in street, on 4-5 December 1991. Data were weighted to match the profile of the population.

Q1a. How would you vote if there were a General Election tomorrow? (If undecided or refused at Q1a) Q1b. Which party are you most inclined to support?

Conservative 40
Labour 43
Liberal Democrat 12
Scottish/Welsh Nationalist 3
Green Party 1
Other 1
Would not vote/Undecided/Refused 16


Q2. We would now like to ask you some general questions about different countries. How favourably or unfavourably do you regard France? How favourably or unfavourably do you regard Germany? How favourably or unfavourably do you regard the USA? How favourably or unfavourably do you regard the European Community?

  France Germany USA EC
  % % % %
Very favourably 9 10 18 13
Mainly favourably 32 39 46 41
Neither favourably nor unfavourably 22 23 18 20
Mainly unfavourably 19 15 11 13
Very unfavourably 13 9 5 9
Don't know 5 4 2 4
Favourably 41 49 64 54
Unfavourably 32 24 16 22
Net +9 +25 +48 +32


Q3. Which of these - Europe, the Commonwealth or America - is the most important to Britain?

Europe 52
The Commonwealth 22
America 19
Don't know 7


Q4. I would like to ask you about Britain's role in the European Community. If there were a referendum now on whether Britain should stay in or get out of the European Community, how would you vote?

Stay in 60
Get out 29
Don't know/no opinion 11


Q5. There have been calls for a national referendum on the issue of a single European currency to replace the pound sterling. Do you favour or oppose holding a referendum on this issue?

Favour 60
Oppose 33
Neither/no opinion 7


Q6. If you voted in such a referendum, would you vote for or against Britain joining a single European currency?

Vote for 38
Vote against 52
Don't know/no opinion 10


Q7. If there were to be a single European currency, which would mean the abolition of the pound sterling, would you personal preference be for this to occur within the next two years or so, between two and ten years, not for another ten years or so, or never?

Within the next two years or so 22
Between two and ten years 23
Not for another ten years or so 13
Not at all/never 35
Don't know/no opinion 7


Q8. From this card, how strongly would you say you feel about Britain's relations with the European Community?

Very important Britain develops closer links with the European Community 35
Fairly important Britain develops closer links with the European Community 34
Not particularly important either way 13
Fairly important Britain does not develop closer links with the European Community 6
Very important Britain does not develop closer links with the European Community 7
No opinion 5


Q9. A number of ideas are being considered which, it is said, will bring the member states of the European Community closer together. Do you support or oppose the idea that...?

    Support Oppose No opinion
There should be a fully integrated armed services to defend Europe % 61 31 8
More power should be transferred to the European Parliament from individual national Parliaments % 32 53 15
There should be fixed standards of workers' rights for all European Community countries % 74 19 7
European Community countries should co-ordinate their foreign policies more % 74 13 13
Decisions made by the Council of Ministers should be passed by majority voting, to get rid of the right of one country to veto decisions % 57 28 15
East European countries, such as Poland and Hungary, should be allowed to become members of the European Community % 74 14 12
A European Central Bank should be established % 53 31 16


Q10. This card describes the three institutions that make up the European Community. The European Parliament is made up of Euro-MPs elected from each country; the Council of Ministers is made up of Cabinet ministers from each national government; and the European Commission is made up of public servants appointed by the Community. Which of these do you think should have most power in making decisions that affect the European Community?

European Parliament 46
Council of Ministers 24
European Commission 16
Don't know/no opinion 14


Q11. From this card, how do you feel about Britain signing an agreement at the summit in Maastricht?

I am strongly in favour of Britain signing 15
I tend to favour Britain signing 26
I am not particularly concerned either way 13
I tend to oppose Britain signing 17
I am strongly opposed to Britain signing 12
Don't know/no opinion 17


Q12. From this list, which Member of Parliament do you most agree with in relation to Britain and Europe? Q13. And who do you trust most to negotiate on Britain's behalf? Q14. And if the choice were between Mr Major and Mrs Thatcher, who would you prefer to have negotiating for Britain in Europe?

  Agree with Trust most Prefer
  % % %
Mr Ashdown 13 11 n/a
Mr Kinnock 24 23 n/a
Mr Major 28 33 56
Mrs Thatcher 17 17 30
None of them 11 12 11
Don't know 7 4 3


Q15. Which of these best describes your own preference for Britain?

A United States of Europe 12
Britain in a European Community where most of the important decisions are made by majority voting, even if one country votes against 27
Britain in a European Community where most of the important decisions are made only if all countries agree 40
Britain withdraw from the European Community altogether 15
Don't know/no opinion 6

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