Brexit and NHS remain the key issues, but the emphasis varies by EU Referendum vote

This month's Issues Index investigates differences in opinion between Remain and Leave voters.

The author(s)

  • Michael Clemence Public Affairs
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  • While Brexit is the top issue facing the country for both Leave and Remain voters, those who voted Remain are significantly more likely to say they are worried about it
  • Concern about the NHS is at the lowest level since October 2016 (39%), although it is still in clear second place
  • Remain voters are significantly more likely to name Brexit as a big issue facing the country; leave voters feel the same about immigration

The November Ipsos MORI/Economist Issues Index shows little movement in the order of importance assigned to the issues facing Britain. Brexit remains the biggest issue facing the country, with almost half (46%) naming it as a concern. The NHS is still in second on 39%; its importance has fallen slightly compared to earlier in the year.

When considering the single biggest issue facing the country, Brexit is also first, on 31%. The proportion naming the NHS as the principal concern has slipped since last month, so it is now below Immigration as single biggest issue (11% against 9%).

November 2017: Top ten issuesThere are also differences by recalled EU Referendum vote, although both sides have the same top two issues of Brexit and the NHS:

  • Remain voters are more likely to mention a number of issues such as Brexit (58%), the economy (30%), education (25%), and poverty/inequality (23%).
  • For Leave voters there are three key issues – Brexit (47%), the NHS (42%) and immigration (40%). They are four times more likely to mention immigration than Remain voters (10% of whom mention it). They are also significantly more likely to mention defence/terrorism than Remain voters.

Top issues by EU referendum vote

Technical note 

Ipsos MORI's Issues Index is conducted monthly and provides an overview of the key issues concerning the country. Ipsos MORI interviewed a representative quota sample of 999 adults aged 18+ across Great Britain. The questions are spontaneous - i.e. respondents are not prompted with any answers. 
Ipsos MORI's Capibus vehicle was used for this survey. Interviews were conducted face-to-face in-home between 3 and 14 November 2017 at 195 sampling points across Great Britain. Data are weighted to match the profile of the population. 

The author(s)

  • Michael Clemence Public Affairs

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