YouGov data on referendum voter intentions

June 21, 2016

YouGov has just released their latest data on referendum voting intentions and it looks like its going to be close (source).

A rolling statistical model making use of all YouGov data shows support for leaving the European Union increased in early June only to peak on June 13th. Their current headline estimate of the result of the referendum is that Leave will win 51 per cent of the vote. This is close enough that they cannot be very confident of the election result: the model puts a 95% chance of a result between 48 and 53, although this only captures some forms of uncertainty. Over the last 14 days, the Leave estimate peaked at 53 around the 12th of June, and support has been moving towards Remain over the last week.

The geographical distribution of voting intentions is clear. Other than London which looks like being strongly Remain, the Leave vote is concentrated in England and to a lesser extent in Wales. If we do indeed get a Brexit on a close vote then I think it is inevitable that, along with a new push for Scottish independence, London will also seek greater autonomy. That means much greater local tax raising powers, essentially retaining more of the money that currently leaves the city for use inside London (probably for greater spending on infrastructure and hopefully social housing, and tax cuts).

Two other charts from YouGove are also interesting. One shows that the Brexit movement is, other than amongst the UKIP supporters, very much clustered at the older end of the age spectrum. Young people are much more pro Remain. The other chart shows that it is the less well educated who most strongly support Brexit. That is not surprising given that it is the less skilled and poorer parts of the population who most experience incoming immigrants as competitors for scarce resources (unskilled and semi skilled jobs, social welfare and housing).



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