Once again concern about the EU barely registers
Anthony Wells of UKPR had the salient factor spot on in an excellent review of polling on the EU. Salience, how important people regard an issue, is something that always needs to be taken into account when trying to assess the political impact.
He wrote: “The best regular measure of salience is Ipsos MORIâ€™s monthly issues tracker, since it is entirely unprompted. MORI ask people what they think the most important issue is facing the country, and what other important issues there are facing the country. Europe normally rates very, very low on this survey. In September 3% of people counted Europe as an important issue facing the country, which is typical of the last five years. When placed alongside issues like the economy, immigration, crime, health and unemployment people simply do not care about Europe.“
Yesterday the figure of 3% was being quoted. Since then we’ve got MORI’s October issues index and the level has risen one point to four as seen in the historical trend in the chart.
The detail of the poll shows that just one percent named the EU as the “most important issue” and that a further three percent listed it as another issue of concern.
Even amongst Conservative voters just 4% mentioned Europe as an important issue facing Britain
Whenever I put this polling up there’s always a furious attack by Eurosceptic posters because nobody likes to be told that something the matters so much to them is only shared by a small proportion of the electorate at large. Their opposition is very similar to theLabour spinners who attacked the polling in 2006/7 that suggested that with Gordon Brown as Labour leader the party would be unelectable.