Two thirds who say they most desire No-Deal want MPs to pass the new deal
Our polling over the past week has consistently shown that a plurality of the public think that MPs should vote to accept Boris Johnson’s Brexit deal. In our most recent poll, 42% of the public said MPs should accept and 31% said they should reject it.
This is a quite a shift from the polling around Theresa May’s deal. Back in March these numbers were reversed, with 31% thinking MPs should vote to accept it and 41% thinking they should vote to reject it.
Looking at the underlying numbers, there have been two interesting shifts in public sentiment. Firstly, more people say their ideal outcome is this latest deal than said the same for May’s deal. Back in March just 9% said their ideal outcome was leaving with the negotiated deal, compared to 19% who say the same now. This has been accompanied by a drop in the number of people who want to leave with an alternative deal, down from 13% to just 6%.
But clearly that isn’t the full picture. If just 19% of the public say the deal is their ideal outcome, why do 42% think MPs should back it?
There are clearly many who would prefer another option but still think MPs should vote for the deal.
The main shift we have seen on this since March is that most of those who would ideally want to leave without a deal now think that MPs should vote in favour of this deal. In March, just 40% of those who ideally wanted to Leave without a deal thought MPs should vote in favour of May’s deal, compared to 69% who now say the same thing for the Johnson deal.
There are multiple reasons why No-Dealers might be giving these apparently contradictory responses. It could be down to “Brexit Fatigue”, where people are now more willing to accept an option that isn’t their top preference because the process has dragged on for too long.
We’ve seen a small increase in the number of No-Dealers who now say “Right now I just want us to get on with it and the divisions in Parliament to be over, even if this means Britain Leaving the European Union without a deal does not happen” - up to 45%, from 36% in March.
It could also be that there’s increasing nervousness amongst No-Dealers that if they don’t compromise it could mean losing Brexit altogether, as the potential for a second referendum has increased now that the Labour Party support the idea in certain conditions.
And, finally, it could be that the people selling this deal are more popular amongst No-Dealers. Boris Johnson has consistently been more popular amongst Leave voters, with 69% of them having a favourable view of him in our most recent poll, compared to 38% who had a favourable view of Theresa May back in March.
But regardless of the reason, Boris’s ability to keep No-Dealers on side has meant he has achieved something his predecessor always struggled to do, and a plurality of the public think MPs should back the deal as a result.