Wednesday 26 October 2016

Two-thirds would support a united Ireland in border poll

Taoiseach Enda Kenny
Taoiseach Enda Kenny

Two out of three voters would back a united Ireland if a border poll were held soon, a survey has revealed.

The prospect of a united Ireland has been in the spotlight since the Brexit referendum result, and a new poll by Paddy Power and Red C shows broad support for the idea.

Sixty-five per cent of people would vote for a united Ireland if a referendum were held today.

A similar poll conducted by Red C in 2010 showed support at 57pc, but there were questions about higher taxation to fund re-unification in that survey.

Such questions often throw up a result with lower support.

Dublin voters were less likely to back the idea of a united Ireland, with 56pc of those polled declaring support for the idea.

Support is high across most regions and age groups, especially those aged 55 to 64, with 70pc favouring the idea. Of working-class voters polled, 69pc backed the idea.


Fianna Fail supporters polled at 71pc in favour, while Sinn Fein voters polled at 79pc.

The survey also found that four out of 10 people believe Taoiseach Enda Kenny should resign before the Budget in the autumn.

Social Protection Minister Leo Varadkar, on 37pc, is the favourite to succeed Mr Kenny. He is followed by Housing Minister Simon Coveney on 25pc and Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald on 12pc.

The poll also showed a drop in support of 1pc for Fianna Fail, to 28pc. Fine Gael, on 27pc, has gained 1pc after a dismal summer.

Mr Varadkar declined to comment on his showing in the poll as a future Taois- each, but said the 27pc was close to the 30pc support the party was keen to reach.

"The big psychological figure for Fine Gael is 30pc, to get above that, and 27pc is not far off it," he said.

"Anyone predicting the demise of Fine Gael and the return of Fianna Fail after the polls a few weeks ago should think again."

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