Brexit does not trigger significant increase in support for independence

In the wake of the UK voting to leave the EU against the wishes of the majority of Scots, our new poll for STV News suggests that Brexit has not caused an upsurge in support for a second independence referendum being held.

Brexit does not trigger significant increase in support for independence

In the wake of the UK voting to leave the EU against the wishes of the majority of Scots, our new poll for STV News suggests that Brexit has not caused an upsurge in support for either a second independence referendum being held, or for supporters of independence carrying the day in the event of a second vote being held.

Among those who expressed a voting preference and who would be very likely or certain to vote in an immediate referendum, 48% said they would support independence while 52% would back Scotland remaining in the UK.

And support for indyref2 being held in the next two years has fallen from 48% in our last STV News poll before the Brexit vote in June, to 41% now. Over the same period, opposition to such a move has grown to 54%, 10 points higher than the recorded in June. Unsurprisingly, there are deep divisions on this issue, with 84% of ‘Yes’ voters supporting indyref2 while 92% of ‘No’ voters oppose the idea.

Elsewhere there has been a significant shift in the public perceptions of the First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and the leader of the main opposition party, Conservative leader Ruth Davidson. Satisfaction in the job being done by the First Minister has fallen by 12-points from April to stand at 54% now. Meanwhile satisfaction in the job being done by Ruth Davidson has risen by 8-points to 55%. In terms of net satisfaction ratings (satisfaction scores minus dissatisfaction scores), Ruth Davidson now stands at +31% compared to Nicola Sturgeon’s +14%.

Mark Diffley, Director at Ipsos MORI Scotland said:

‘The summer was dominated by the fallout from the Brexit vote and the impact it may have support for independence. It is clear form this poll that, despite the UK-wide vote contradicting the wishes of the majority in Scotland, Brexit has not resulted in a surge in support for independence. However, at 48% among committed voters, it remains entirely possible that a second referendum campaign could be won by supporters of independence.”

Technical details:

  • Results are based on a survey of 1,000 respondents (adults aged 16+) conducted by telephone
  • Fieldwork dates: 5th September to 11th September 2016
  • Data are weighted by: age, sex educational attainment and working status using census data; tenure using Scottish Household Survey data; and public-private sector employment using Scottish Government Quarterly Public Sector Employment series data
  • Where results do not sum to 100%, this may be due to computer rounding, multiple responses, or the exclusion of “don’t know” categories
  • Results are based on all respondents (1,000) unless otherwise stated

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