In Defence of Liberty

Driven by data; ridden with liberty.

Ipsos MORI Political Monitor, February 2016


The EU referendum was part of the selected questions. (Source: Ipsos MORI)

Ipsos MORI have released their second Political Monitor of 2016 [1]. The poll of 1,001 adults in Great Britain was conducted by telephone between 13th and 16th February 2016. Results were then weighted to match the profile of the population.

The headline voting intention is 39% would vote Conservative if there were a General Election tomorrow, and 33% would place their ballot for Labour. The next largest party was the UK Independence Party, on 12%. The voting intentions are weighted according to past voting behaviour and stated likelihood of voting in future elections. This methodology would have given the most accurate results in the 2015 General Election. Ipsos MORI anticipates their methodology refining again, following the British Polling Council enquiry.


The Conservatives now have a lead of 6 percentage points, according to the Ipsos MORI turnout model and poll. (Source: Ipsos MORI)

Given the margins of error, there has been no discernible shift in voting intentions for the two major parties over the past month. In the January 2016 Political Monitor, 40% said they were intending to vote Conservative, and 31% supported Labour.

The EU referendum

The Political Monitor focuses on the upcoming referendum on Britain’s membership of the European Union. In common with other telephone polling, Ipsos MORI found a majority of the British public wish to stay in the European Union. This percentage varies slightly based on the exact wording of the question. When the question was “if there were a referendum now on whether Britain should stay in or get out of the European Union, how would you vote?”, 51% said they wanted to ‘stay in’.


Different wording leads to slightly different results. (Source: Ipsos MORI)

When the question was:

Should the United Kingdom remain a member of the European Union or leave the European Union?

The percentage of the ‘Remainians’ rises to 54%.

As the referendum approaches, more people who have declared a preference settled upon their view. In the February poll, 63% responded that they had “definitely decided” how they were going to vote in the EU referendum. By comparison, 58% said they “definitely decided” on their referendum ballot in the October 2015 Political Monitor.

A majority (52%) believed that the referendum – scheduled to be on 23rd June 2016 – is at the right time. 28% responded that a June referendum would be “too early”.

“Important to you in deciding”

Respondents were then asked which political figures “will be important to you in deciding how to vote in the referendum on European Union membership”, with people being able to select multiple answers. 44% responded said that the Prime Minister and Conservative leader David Cameron was important. The next most important view will be that of Alexander ‘Boris’ Johnson, the current Mayor of London and Conservative MP for Uxbridge and South Ruislip, with 32% saying he will be important in their vote. Jeremy Corbyn, the Labour leader and Leader of the Opposition, is important in the upcoming referendum to 27% of respondents. The Labour leader ranks fifth among politicians, beneath the Home Secretary Theresa May and the Chancellor George Osborne, who are both on 28%.


The Prime Minister is considered the most important individual in this referendum. (Source: Ipsos MORI)

The view of the Prime Minister is important in the EU referendum to 73% of Conservatives, and 34% of Labour supporters [2]. In contrast, Jeremy Corbyn’s opinion on the matter is important to 58% of Labour intenders, and important to only 9% of Conservative supporters.

The subject of British membership of the European Union will accumulate in prominence, with many more polls up until the day of the referendum.


[1] Ipsos MORI, 2016. Ipsos MORI Political Monitor February 2016 Charts. Available from: [Accessed: 18th February 2016]

[2] Ipsos MORI, 2016. Ipsos MORI Political Monitor February 2016 Tables. Available from: [Accessed: 18th February 2016]



This entry was posted on March 1, 2016 by in National Politics and tagged , , , .
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