Most Conservative and Labour voters believe EU in/out referendum would be bad for the economy

Although the Prime Minister’s pledge has made three in 10 people more likely to vote Conservative, half the public share concerns highlighted by Labour, the Liberal Democrats and the business community

A majority of Conservative and Labour voters believe that the delayed in/out referendum on Europe promised by David Cameron is likely to harm the economy, according to a ComRes survey for The Independent.

Although the Prime Minister’s pledge has made three in 10 people more likely to vote Conservative, half the public share concerns highlighted by Labour, the Liberal Democrats and some businessmen about pre-announcing a referendum that would not take place until 2017. 

Some 49 per cent of people agree the delay is likely to result in economic harm because of the uncertainty it creates for companies and investors. Some 32 per cent disagree with this statement.  But 52 per cent of Conservative supporters and 54 per cent of current Labour voters believe the delay is likely to harm the economy.

Tories will  welcome the ComRes finding that 30 per cent of the public say they are more likely to back the Conservatives as a result of  Mr Cameron’s referendum promise. Some 57 per cent disagree. One in six Labour supporters (16 per cent) and almost four in 10 supporters of the UK Independence Party (Ukip)  are more likely to vote Tory.

But not all Conservatives are impressed by last week’s announcement: 28 per cent of current Tory supporters and 35 per cent of people who voted Tory at the last general election are not more likely to back the party after the referendum promise.

The poll suggests Ed Miliband could reap an electoral benefit if he matched Mr Cameron’s pledge. More than one in four  voters (27 per cent) would be more likely to vote Labour if the party promised a Europe referendum, while 59 per cent disagree. This finding is bound to increase the pressure on Mr Miliband from within his party to offer the public a vote. He is determined to resist it, while not ruling out a referendum forever.

A smaller proportion (22 per cent) would be more likely to vote Lib Dem if the party offered a referendum, with 64 per cent disagreeing. But a quarter (24 per cent) of current Tory supporters would be more likely to back the Lib Dems.

The Prime Minister’s referendum pledge does not appear to have dented Ukip’s appeal. The anti-EU party is up one point to 10 per cent since last month, drawing level with the Lib Dems, who are unchanged on 10 per cent.   Some 12 per cent of people who voted Tory in 2010 say they would vote Ukip now, enough to harm Mr Cameron’s prospects at the 2015 election if that is still the case then. Men (14 per cent) are more likely than women (5 per cent) to support Ukip.

Labour’s lead over the Conservatives has dropped from 10 to seven points since last month. Labour is now on 39 per cent (down two points), the Conservatives 32 per cent (up one point). Other parties are on 9 per cent (down one point). These figures would give Labour an overall majority of 84 at a general election.

A poll in France by  research agency BVA shows that a  majority (52 per cent) of  French people favour Britain leaving the EU, while 48 per cent want it to stay.

Downing Street confirmed yesterday that ministers are looking at measures to curb immigration from Bulgaria and Romania when existing controls are lifted at the end of this year. The most likely option is to restrict the right of people from the two EU countries to claim state benefits in Britain. Some ministers want to curb their entry rights by declaring an “emergency” but this is unlikely to happen after legal advice saying the right to free movement in the EU should prevail.

ComRes interviewed 1,002 GB adults by telephone between January 25-27. Data were weighted to be demographically representative of all GB adults. Data were also weighted by past vote recall. ComRes is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment
Madonna is not in Twitter's good books after describing her album leak as 'artistic rape and terrorism'
music
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Tony Hughes (James Nesbitt) after his son Olly disappeared on a family holiday in France
tv
Arts and Entertainment
The Apprentice candidates Roisin Hogan, Solomon Akhtar, Mark Wright, Bianca Miller, Daniel Lassman
tvReview: But which contestants got the boot?
Arts and Entertainment
Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels ride again in Dumb and Dumber To
filmReview: Dumb And Dumber To was a really stupid idea
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Provisioning Specialist

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Provisioning Specialist is required to join ...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Apprenticeships

£10000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an outstanding opportunity for 1...

Recruitment Genius: Customer Support Engineer

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Support Engineer is required to join a well-...

Recruitment Genius: Customer Services Administrator - Swedish Speaking

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity to join an awa...

Day In a Page

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas
La Famille Bélier is being touted as this year's Amelie - so why are many in the deaf community outraged by it?

Deaf community outraged by La Famille Bélier

The new film tells the story of a deaf-mute farming family and is being touted as this year's Amelie
10 best high-end laptops

10 best high-end laptops

From lightweight and zippy devices to gaming beasts, we test the latest in top-spec portable computers
Michael Carberry: ‘After such a tough time, I’m not sure I will stay in the game’

Michael Carberry: ‘After such a tough time, I’m not sure I will stay in the game’

The batsman has grown disillusioned after England’s Ashes debacle and allegations linking him to the Pietersen affair
Susie Wolff: A driving force in battle for equality behind the wheel

Susie Wolff: A driving force in battle for equality behind the wheel

The Williams driver has had plenty of doubters, but hopes she will be judged by her ability in the cockpit
Adam Gemili interview: 'No abs Adam' plans to muscle in on Usain Bolt's turf

'No abs Adam' plans to muscle in on Usain Bolt's turf

After a year touched by tragedy, Adam Gemili wants to become the sixth Briton to run a sub-10sec 100m
Calls for a military mental health 'quality mark'

Homeless Veterans campaign

Expert calls for military mental health 'quality mark'
Racton Man: Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman

Meet Racton Man

Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman
Garden Bridge: St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters

Garden Bridge

St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters
Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament: An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel

Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament

An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel
Joint Enterprise: The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice

Joint Enterprise

The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice
Freud and Eros: Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum: Objects of Desire

Freud and Eros

Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum