Quarter of population support Welsh independence – YouGov

Picture: Rhydian Hughes

A quarter of the public now favour independence for Wales, according to YouGov.

Support rose to a third if the Conservatives increase their majority at Westminster at the upcoming Westminster General Election.

People were asked to rate their support for independence between zero and ten. Of those polled:

  • 26% favour independence (support between six and ten)
  • 16% were neither in favour nor against (five out of ten)
  • 47% were against (zero to four)

Those most supportive of independence were those that voted Welsh Labour and Plaid Cymru in 2015 and the 18-49 age group. Those that voted Conservative and UKIP in 2015 were the least supportive.

The poll was undertaken by YouGov on behalf of Yes Cymru between the 9th and 12th of May.

Tory majority

When the same people were asked how they would feel if the Conservatives increased their majority in the House of Commons following the elections on 8 June, support for independence rose to 32%.

When “don’t knows” were discounted, 36% favoured independence if May was returned to Downing Street after the election, according to the poll.

When undecideds were discounted, 47% of Labour voters favoured independence under this scenario, with 23% being strongly in favour.

‘Cross-party support’

The Chair of Yes Cymru, Iestyn ap Rhobert, said that the results were “superb” for the campaign for Welsh independence.

“It’s really encouraging to see so much cross-party support, even though those parties are not currently making the case for freedom for our nation,” he said.

“The political parties need to let the people of Wales decide on the fate of our nation – this campaign is the people’s campaign, and the momentum is growing.”

Iestyn ap Rhobert said that it was “only sensible that decisions about Wales should be made in Wales”.

“We have the right to be an independent country, and Westminster has no divine right to reign over us,” he said.

“We believe in an inclusive citizenship, that welcomes and celebrates the fact that everyone who chooses to make Wales their home – regardless of background – is a full citizen of the new Wales.”

Picture: Llinos Dafydd

Analysis

This is the first poll conducted by YouGov which has asked the public to rate their support for independence.

Support for independence for Wales has been measured yearly by ICM for the BBC, but as a multi-option question.

The last poll conducted on St. David’s Day found that 6% favoured Wales becoming an independent country.

Most respondents, 44%, felt that Wales should have further self-determination, while 29% felt that the Senedd had sufficient powers.

Only 16% felt that Wales’ parliament should have fewer powers or that it should be abolished.

Yes Cymru are holding their annual meeting in Aberystwyth on Saturday 17 June.

The questions asked

Respondents were asked the following questions:

  • Q1: On a scale of 0-10 where 10 is very strongly in favour and 0 is very strongly against, how do you feel about Welsh Independence?
  • Q2: Now assume that the Conservatives win an increased majority in the UK general election. In this instance, on a scale of 0-10 where 10 is very strongly in favour and 0 is very strongly against, how do you feel about Welsh Independence?

The full figures

The results for the population, in general, showed that:

  • 26% of people in Wales were in favour of Welsh independence with another 16% neither in favour or against.
  • When asked how they would feel if the Conservatives won an increased majority in the UK general election the figure rose to 32% with another 11% neither in favour or against.
  • 29% of people in Wales (excluding Don’t Knows) were in favour of Welsh independence.
  • When asked how they would feel if the Conservatives won an increased majority in the UK general election the figure rose to 36% (excluding Don’t Knows).

The figures for the Labour party showed that:

  • 29% of 2015 Labour voters in Wales were in favour of Welsh independence with another 16% neither in favour or against.
  • When asked how they would feel if the Conservatives won an increased majority in the UK general election the figure rose to 43% with another 8% neither in favour or against, and 21% saying that they would be very strongly in favour of Welsh independence.
  • 32% of 2015 Labour voters in Wales (excluding Don’t Knows) were in favour of Welsh independence.
  • When asked how they would feel if the Conservatives won an increased majority in the UK general election the figure rose to 47% (excluding Don’t Knows) with 23% saying that they would be very strongly in favour of Welsh independence.

The figures for 18-49-year-olds showed that:

  • 34% of 18-49-year-olds in Wales were in favour of Welsh independence
  • When asked how they would feel if the Conservatives won an increased majority in the UK general election the figure rose to 39%.
  • 39% of 18-49-year-olds in Wales (excluding Don’t Knows) were in favour of Welsh independence
  • When asked how they would feel if the Conservatives won an increased majority in the UK general election the figure rose to 48% (excluding Don’t Knows).
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