European Union Poll

Two in three (67%) British adults would like to see a referendum held to decide on Britain membership of the European Union - only a quarter (26%) would not like to see such a referendum. When it comes to voting in the referendum the public are fairly split, half say they would vote to get out of the European Union while two in five would vote for Britain to stay in the EU.

Two in three (67%) British adults would like to see a referendum held to decide on Britain membership of the European Union – only a quarter (26%) would not like to see such a referendum.

  • Conservative supporters are most likely to say they want a referendum – 78% compared to 63% of Labour supporters and 58% of Liberal Democrats.
  • People aged 55+ are also particularly keen on having a referendum – 74% compared to 56% of 18-34 year olds, and 69% of 35-54 year olds.

When it comes to voting in the referendum the public are fairly split, half (49%) say they would vote to get out of the European Union while two in five (41%) would vote for Britain to stay in the EU. This represents a swing in favour of leaving the European Union since 2007 when half (51%) were in favour of staying in the EU and 39% said they would vote to leave.This is the highest percentage of the public that feels the UK should leave the EU since March 1983.

  • Conservative supporters are the most likely to say they would vote for Britain to leave the EU – 58% compared to 42% of Labour supporters and 36% of Liberal Democrats.
  • There are differences in the way people would vote based on age. Younger people – aged 18-34 – are most likely to say they would vote to keep Britain in the EU (51%) compared to 31% of those aged 55+. It follows then that those aged 55+ are most likely to say they would vote to leave the EU (59% compared to 37% of 18-34 year olds).
  • There also differences based on social grade. Those from lower social grades are more likely than those from higher social grades to say they would vote to leave the EU: DEs – 63%, C2s – 54%, C1s – 46% and ABs – 36%
For the full trend for Q2. dating back to 1977 please go to: /researchpublications/researcharchive/poll.aspx?oItemId=2435&view=wide

Ipsos MORI interviewed a representative sample of 1,002 adults aged 18+ across Great Britain. Interviews were conducted by telephone 22-24 October 2011.  Data are weighted to match the profile of the population.

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