More than half of UK public say they want final Brexit deal put to public vote

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Luke Taylor

Head of Opinion Polling, Public Division, UK

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Kantar voting intention polls (4th – 8th April 2019) show Conservative 32% (-9 vs Mar 2019), Labour 35% (+4 vs Mar 2019), Lib Dems 11% (+3), UKIP 7% (+1), SNP 5% (nc), Green 4% (-2), Plaid Cymru 1% (+1), Other 6% (+4).

As Prime Minister May returns from meeting with President Macron and Chancellor Merkel to garner support for an extension to Article 50, Kantar’s research finds that remaining in the EU/ Revoking Article 50 is the most popular outcome for the public, with one in three saying this is their most favourable scenario (33%). Leaving the European Union with ‘No Deal’ is the preferred outcome for one in four Britons (24%). Just over 1 in 10 (12%) want to Leave the EU with Theresa May’s deal, and 1 in 6 want Britain to leave the EU but remain in the Single Market / Customs Union (15%).

Over half of Britons are in favour of any final deal or agreement reached by the government being put to a public referendum (51%). A third of Leave voters (35%) and two thirds of Remain voters (67%) say they want any agreement to be put to a public vote.1 in 3 Britons (32%) do not want any final deal put to a public vote and the remainder do not have an opinion (17%).

How would the public vote if a new referendum was held?

Leave 35% (+3 vs Mar 2019), Remain 41% (+1), Would Not Vote 15% (-6), Don’t Know 9% (+1).


Public priorities for the UK’s exit from the European Union:

According to Kantar’s April Brexit Barometer, the British public’s priorities for the UK’s exit agreement are:

  • Three-quarters of the public want the UK to continue collaborating with the EU on science, research and technology initiatives (75%, +7 vs Mar 2019) and on security and policing (76%, +7 vs Mar 2019).
  • 64% of the public want British companies to have tariff-free access to the EU markets (+1 vs Mar 2019) while 53% want European companies to have the same tariff-free access to UK markets, including services (-3 vs Mar 2019).
  • Nearly 7 in 10 Britons (67%, +5 vs Mar 2019) want the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland to remain ‘soft’ without any passport control. Whilst 19% said they ‘don’t know’ (-1).
  • 61% (+4 vs Mar 2019) want the UK to draw up its own rules and regulations, even if they clash with EU rules and regulations and for there to be no further contributions to the EU budget (60%, +1 vs Mar 2019).
  • 6 in 10 (62%, +6 vs Mar 2019) of the public want unrestricted rights for UK citizens to live in the EU. Whereas 50% (+6 vs Mar 2019) of Britons want to deny the same unrestricted right for EU citizens to live in the UK.
  • Over half (53%, -2 vs Mar 2019) want the UK to be part of a customs union with the EU to ensure no checks on goods at UK/EU borders, including with Ireland.

New faces wanted in Westminster and Downing Street?

When asked who they thought would have the best chance of being Conservative party if Theresa May stepped down, Boris Johnson was found to have the best chance of being the next leader, but he was only selected by 10% of respondents (18% of 2017 Conservative voters). To try and avoid the issue of respondents just choosing the names of politicians they recognize the question was asked un-prompted. 3% think Michael Gove, and 2% think Jeremy Hunt. 7 in 10 Britons don’t know (69%).

Over 1 in 4 (27%, +6 vs Mar 2019) say it is very or somewhat likely that they would vote for ‘Change UK – The Independent Party’ at the next General Election (if a candidate stood in their constituency). Of people who said they would consider voting for them, support is seen from those who voted for Labour (38%)and Conservatives (24%).

Almost 1 in 4 Britons (23%) say it is very or somewhat likely that they would vote for ‘The Brexit Party’ at the next general election (if a candidate stood in their constituency). Of people who said they would vote for them, a third of those who voted for the Conservatives in 2017 would consider supporting them (36%).

Public opinion on the government’s management of the economy and Brexit negotiations

  • Over 7 in 10 Britons (71%, +9 vs Mar 2019) rate the government’s management of the Brexit negotiations as poor and 15% (-8 vs Mar 2019) rate their handling of the negotiations as well.
  • When asked about the impact Brexit will have on jobs, NHS care, schools, living costs and peoples’ local area, 41% (-6 vs Mar 2019) of the British public believe that Brexit will have negative effects with no positive effects.
  • 1 in 4 (25%, +10 vs Mar 2019) believe Brexit will have positive effects with no negative effects.


Methodological information

The survey data and further details on the methodological approach can be found here.

A total of 1,172 interviews were conducted online among adults living in Great Britain between 4th and 8th April 2019. Interviews were conducted using the Kantar TNS Research Express Online Omnibus, which uses the Lightspeed access panel as its sample source.

The data was weighted to match population totals for age, gender, working status, 2017 General Election voting patterns, 2016 EU referendum voting patterns, education, region, and likelihood to vote in the next General Election. Any use of this research must cite Kantar as the source.

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