Would Scotland really vote for independence after Brexit?

Polls show huge support for Remain, and less taste for independence if outside the EU


New polling out today suggests that whilst the majority of Scots plan to vote to Remain in the European Union, support for a second vote on independence if the UK as a whole votes to leave is not as strong as the SNP might like.

According to the data prepared by TNS, when asked how they intend to vote in the referendum, 51 per cent of respondents said they would vote to Remain compared to 21 per cent who supported leaving the EU and 29 per cent who did not know how they would vote.

When don’t knows are removed, this suggests 71 per cent would vote to remain and 29 per cent would vote to leave.

Tom Costley, Head of TNS Scotland, said of these findings:

‘The level of support for the EU in Scotland has shown little change over the last few months and it looks likely that Scotland will vote to remain on June 23.

There is still the potential for a high turnout, suggesting the Scottish public can see the importance of this decision.

Both sides will be keen to get as many people as possible to cast their vote on the day.

Given how close the race is looking across the UK, every vote will count.’

Interestingly, the survey also questioned respondents about a situation whereby Scotland voted to stay in the EU but the UK voted to leave.

If a second vote on Scottish independence was held in such circumstances, 38 per cent said they would back a Yes vote, 48 per cent said they would vote No and 14 per cent don’t know.

Removing those who say they don’t know, 44 per cent would vote Yes and 56 per cent would vote No.

TNS also asked respondents if they thought there should be a new Independence referendum in these circumstances. 43 per cent said yes, 46 per cent said no and 10 per cent said they did not know.

Tom Costley said:

‘The SNP has said that a UK vote to leave the EU could trigger a new referendum on Independence.

However, on the basis of this latest poll it would appear that appetite for such a move is mostly limited to those who back Independence rather than being shared by the public as a whole.

There is also little evidence that opinion towards Independence has shifted significantly since September 2014, with support for a Yes vote, even in these circumstances, well below the 60 per cent level that First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has indicated she would be looking for before calling another vote.’

Ed Jacobs is a contributing editor at Left Foot Forward

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