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Brexit news: Half of Britons would rather May CAVED IN to EU – shock poll | Politics | News

Brexit news: Half of Britons would rather May CAVED IN to EU – shock poll | Politics | News preloaderbig

The findings come at the beginning of another pivotal week in the race to strike a deal with Brussels on the terms for Britain’s departure next March 29.

Hopes that outstanding issues can be solved in time to call a special EU summit as early as next week to rubber stamp a deal appeared to have been dashed as negotiations continue.

A summit towards the end of the month is seen as a more realistic goal.

But today there was cautious optimism that agreement was in sight on how to keep the Irish border open for trade after Brexit.

A poll of more than 3,000 people by Hanbury Strategy for Politico found 47 percent of voters think Theresa May should “compromise” with the EU to get a deal rather than walk away without one.

Only 35 percent of the group, who were polled from Monday to Friday last week, would rather leave on a no-deal basis. 

The dilemma for Mrs May is that her own party takes a much more hardline view. 

By 48 to 41 percent, Tory voters would rather she took Britain out of the bloc without a deal than compromised, and by 65 to 35 percent they would rather quit with no agreement than stay in the EU, the survey found.

Only 35 per cent would rather leave on a no-deal basis (Image: Daily Express/ Getty Images)

Mrs May will update her Cabinet tomorrow on talks progress.

Ministers will also receive their now weekly update on preparations for a no-deal Brexit.

Mrs May is likely to face tough questioning on the options for keeping Britain in the EU customs union after Brexit.

The plan would be a temporary “backstop” guarantee against needing a new “hard border” between Ireland and Northern Ireland, until a permanent solution can be put in place.

Many ministers and MPs fear Mrs May is ready to accept terms which would let Britain get stuck indefinitely in the customs union, drastically limiting its freedom to strike new free trade deals around the world.

Finding a way to ensure the UK cannot be trapped against its will is one of the key outstanding issues still to be hammered out in talks with Brussels.

Mrs May also insists that any customs union “backstop” must involve the whole UK staying temporarily in the customs union, not just Northern Ireland as Brussels initially proposed.

The PM refuses to accept a deal that separated Northern Ireland from the rest of the UK.

Reports that Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab privately demanded the right for Britain to quit the backstop after as little as three months were being played down today.

But Downing Street stressed Mrs May’s own insistence that any backstop continuation of membership must be clearly temporary.

Options include setting an end date – which many ministers and MPs want but the EU has resisted – or agreeing a “mechanism” by which the UK could leave the backstop one day.

Government sources today voiced cautious optimism after Irish PM Leo Veradkar signalled he was ready to consider a “review mechanism” for the backstop.

Brexit news: Half of Britons would rather May CAVED IN to EU – shock poll | Politics | News preloaderbig

British Prime MinisterTheresa May, leaving 10 Downing Street (Image: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire)

Brexit news: Half of Britons would rather May CAVED IN to EU – shock poll | Politics | News preloaderbig

Irish PM Leo Veradkar declared he was ready to “review mechanism” for the backstop (Image: ARIS OIKONOMOU/AFP/Getty Images)

But he also made clear he would not agree to Britain unilaterally deciding to end the arrangement. 

Brexiteers will be horrified if the EU gets the final say on whether Britain can exit the customs union.

Downing Street’s account of the “constructive conversation” said the two leaders “agreed that the intention was that the backstop should only be  a temporary arrangement and that the best solution to the Northern Ireland border would be found by agreeing a future relationship between the UK and the EU. 

“In order to ensure that the backstop, if ever needed, would be temporary, the prime minister said that there would need to be a mechanism through which the backstop could be brought to an end.”

Earlier Mr Varadkar said a backstop deal with an expiry date “isn’t worth the paper it’s written on” – and his deputy also insisted neither Ireland nor the EU could agree one.

Tonight a survey by pollsters Survation of 20,000 people for Channel 4’s Brexit: What The Nation Really Thinks reported opinion had shifted strongly towards Remain.

It estimated the UK would now vote to stay in the EU, by 54 to 46 percent, and that 105 local authorities where a majority of people voted Leave in 2016 would now vote Remain.

Tonight Mrs May also sought to remind her fractious party of the need to stop Jeremy Corbyn becoming Prime Minister.

Brexit news: Half of Britons would rather May CAVED IN to EU – shock poll | Politics | News preloaderbig

Theresa May meets European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker (Image: JOHN THYS/AFP/Getty Images)

She told an event hosted by the influential Centre for Policy Studies thinktank: “What has happened to Labour is a national tragedy. But it would be a national calamity if they were ever able to do the same to our country.”

By contrast the Tories offered “decent, moderate and patriotic government to build a country that works for everyone”.

Aides stressed her attenDance was not an endorsement of new CPS proposals for workers to be allowed to earn £1,000 a month before paying any income tax or national insurance. 

In her own remarks Mrs May pointed to the fresh tax cuts announced in last week’s Budget for millions of people through again raising the tax-free personal allowance.

Justice Secretary David Gauke told the programme (C4’s Brexit: What the Nation Really Thinks) that the Government did want Britain to be able to make its own trade deals around the world and have frictionless trade with the EU after Brexit: “Our intention isn’t to stay in the customs union. Our intention is to leave it – as soon as we are able to do so having sorted out the Northern Ireland border issue.”

Brexit news: Half of Britons would rather May CAVED IN to EU – shock poll | Politics | News preloaderbig

Britain’s departure is to be expected next March 29 (Image: DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images)

Before announcing Survation’s national finding that the country would vote Remain if given another in-out referendum, the programme opened with a local finding that Sunderland had become less pro-Brexit since 2016.

Former Ukip leader Nigel Farage told the programme he was not surprised by a shift because “people respond to campaigning. For the last six or nine months we have had a Remain campaign which is very heavily funded, very active, out there every day campaigning.”

The Leave side by contrast had stepped back because it thought it had won.

Mr Farage also complained that Theresa May was taking Britain into a watered-down “Remainers’s Brexit.

“The biggest problem we have is a lack of leadership. People are very confused,” said Mr Farage.

People said “yes” if asked if they wanted to control their own laws, borders and trade, he said: “So in its heart the country still wants Brexit. But I’m afraid it’s becoming very disenchanted with politics and politicians.”

Responding to the Survation finding that Britain would now vote by 54 to 46 per cent for Remain, compared to the 52 to 48 percent Leave vote of 2016, respected pollster Sir John Curtice said only about 1 percent of the swing was previous Leave voters being more inclined towards Remain.

The change was “a lot to do with turnout. The biggest element are people who didn’t vote in 2016, who in this and other surveys are about two to one in favour of Remain”, he told the C4 programme.

More than half of non-voters in 2016 were under 35. Challenging claims that young people’s Remain votes would deliver a different result if there was another in-out referendum, Survation found only 48 per cent of 18 to 24-year-olds say they would definitely vote – the same proportion as 2016.

Justice Secretary David Gauke said a swing to Remain did not surprise him, given current uncertainty as negotiations with Brussels neared their end.

A deal could see a swing back to Leave and no deal another to Remain, he said: “But public opinion will move around. We had a referendum and we all said we would respect that result.”

Former Ukip leader Nigel Farage said: “We have a government that doesn’t believe in Brexit and won’t make the arguments for it … You have not heard the Brexit argument made for the last 18 months – and we’re still on 46 per cent.

“If the democratic will of the people is overturned and betrayed and they force us to vote again, I’m convinced from those figures that Leave would win by a much bigger margin next time round.”

Source : EXPRESS

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