A week ago the SKWAWKBOX published analysis of the latest polling by Survation – the only polling company to correctly predict the results in the last two general elections – showing that Labour would lose general election votes in any scenario in which the party led calls for a new referendum. The only situation where Labour could support a so-called “people’s vote” (PV) would be if the Tories called one.
Two days ago, the latest ComRes poll supported that analysis, by showing that more voters across the country oppose a new referendum and believe that the 2016 result should be honoured.
Predictably, those results and the analysis were attacked by PV-enthusiasts, largely on the grounds that the polls were commissioned by right-wing, pro-Brexit newspapers – and spokespeople for PV and ‘stop Brexit’ groups have continued to insist that it’s somehow obvious that Labour should lead the charge for a new referendum and that this would magically carry Labour into power.
An inconvenient truth
But today, leaked results from a poll conducted by one of the leading anti-Brexit groups has thrown a spanner into the works of those who continue to try to push Labour into a PV or any other stance that could be perceived as likely to prevent Brexit.
The Best for Britain group is no natural ally of a left-wing Labour Party. Its board includes Blairite former Health Secretary Alan Milburn and an investor with links to an institute connected to at least one US general and a former CIA director.
Yet polling commissioned by the group – which has emerged because of a leak, rather than its publication – agrees that Labour would lose votes if it came out against Brexit, which would certainly include any move to push a PV, given the known anti-Brexit motivation of the vast majority of those backing it. Whether the polling would have been released if not leaked is not known.
The poll, which was obtained by the Guardian newspaper – itself usually an advocate of a new referendum – shows that almost a third of voters would be less likely to vote Labour if the party opposed Brexit, while only a quarter said they it would make them more likely to back the party, a net loss for Labour of around 8%.
Best for Britain supports a new referendum, so the findings are inconvenient. The poll, conducted by Populus, also showed Labour would lose more Labour voters than it could gain from those who voted Tory at the last election.
A spokesperson for Best for Britain claimed that the ‘vast majority’ of Labour voters would not desert the party if it tried to prevent Brexit – but had to admit that Labour needs to win voters who voted Conservative or UKIP at the last general election if it wants to win the next one.
The evidence continues to mount that Jeremy Corbyn and his team are handling the Brexit issue exactly right for the majority of people in this country and for the disadvantaged who desperately need a Labour government, in or out of the EU.
This new evidence, commissioned by an organisation that wants another referendum, is another blow to the claims of those who call most loudly for a new referendum that Labour ‘must’ back one.
Do they simply not care that any such move by Labour would keep the UK’s suffering millions in desperate straits – or are they actively looking to prevent a Corbyn government in spite of the consequences for our most vulnerable?
The SKWAWKBOX needs your support. This blog is provided free of charge but depends on the generosity of its readers to be viable. If you can afford to, please click here to arrange a one-off or modest monthly donation via PayPal or here for a monthly donation via GoCardless. Thanks for your solidarity so this blog can keep bringing you information the Establishment would prefer you not to know about.
If you wish to reblog this post for non-commercial use, you are welcome to do so – see here for more.