Ipsos MORI's latest research, conducted for the English Constitutional Convention, shows that there is increasing public support for England to have its own Parliament. The study asked two questions -- the first to measure the change in views of the public since 1999; the second -- to measure the extent to which informing the public about the present constitutional settlement impacts on people's views.
The results from question 1 illustrate that the public's preferred option (out of three possibilities) is for "England to be governed as it is now, with laws made by the UK Parliament" (45%). However, support for this options has decreased from 55% in 2003 and from 62% in 1999. A quarter of the public (26%) say they would prefer "England as a whole to have its own new Parliament with law-making powers" -- and this option is more popular now than in 2003 (16%). The middle option of "each region of England to have its own assembly that runs services like health" finds support of 17% of the public -- down from 24% in 2003.
The second question -- asked of a matched sample of those answering question 1 -- clearly shows how public opinion changes when respondents are given more information about how Scottish and Welsh MPs can vote on in English only issues at Westminster under the current constitutional settlement. In this question, the most popular option is for "England as a whole to have its own national Parliament with similar law-making powers to the Scottish Parliament" (41%).
- Ipsos MORI interviewed a representative quota sample of adults aged 18+ at 193 sampling points across Great Britain.
- Questions 1 and 2 were asked among adults living in Great Britain. The survey was "split-sampled" so that half of respondents (n=939) were asked question 1 and the other half (n=992) asked question 2.
- Interviews were conducted face-to-face on 22-26 June 2006.
- Data are weighted to match the profile of the population.
- Where percentages do not sum to 100, this may be due to computer rounding, the exclusion of "don't know" categories, or multiple answers. Throughout the volume, an asterisk (*) denotes any value of less than half a per cent.
Q1 With all the changes going on in the way different parts of Great Britain are run, which of the following do you think would be best for England ...?
|Base: adults in Britain||2,718||1,928||2,761||2,897||975||939||798|
|... for England to be governed as it is now, with laws made by the UK Parliament||62||54||57||56||55||45||44|
|... for each region of England to have its own assembly that runs services like health||15||18||23||20||24||17||18|
|... for England as a whole to have its own new Parliament with law-making powers||18||19||16||17||16||26||27|
* results for adults living in England. Data from previous years taken from British Social Attitudes Surveys.
Q2 With all the constitutional changes going on in the way different parts of the UK are run, which are creating national Parliaments for Scotland and Wales, which of the following do you think would be best for England...? Base: 992 adults in Britain (834 adults in England)
|... for England to be governed as it is now, with laws made by the UK Parliament even though this means that Scottish and Welsh MPs can vote on English-only issues||32||32|
|... for England to be divided into Regions with each having its own Assembly||14||14|
|... for England as a whole to have its own national Parliament with similar law-making powers to the Scottish Parliament||41||41|