Majority are happy with Lisbon result - poll


THE MAJORITY of the public are happy with the result of the Lisbon Treaty referendum, including one in 10 of those who voted Yes, according to an opinion poll.

The poll of 1,000 adults was carried out by market research firm Behaviour Attitudes on June 13th - the day after the referendum - and on June 24th.

Fifty-four per cent of those polled said they were happy with the result, while 34 per cent were unhappy, and 11 per cent were undecided.

One in six of those who said they were happy with the outcome believes, nevertheless, that it will have negative consequences for Ireland. One in three said they were happy with the outcome even though they accept that it will negatively affect the European Union.

A significant minority of those polled, 49 per cent, believe the result will have bad consequences for the EU, compared with just 35 per cent who believed it will be good.

The poll holds some disturbing findings for the Government, as it struggles to cope with the consequences of the rejection.

Nine per cent of those who voted Yes in the referendum, which was defeated by 53.4 per cent to 46.6 per cent, say they are now happy with the result, "suggesting perhaps that their support was rather 'soft' to begin with", said Behaviour Attitudes.

Fianna Fáil supporters were the only voting bloc to follow their party leadership's voting call: 55 per cent of them voted in favour, while 42 per cent voted No.

Fifty-nine per cent of Fine Gael supporters polled said they were happy, even though 43 per cent of them believed the No vote will have bad consequences for Ireland.

Forty-two per cent of Fine Gael supporters said they had voted Yes, with 57 per cent voting No. Fifty-eight per cent of Labour supporters polled voted No; and 40 per cent Yes.

Sinn Féin and Libertas were given the most credit by No voters polled; the influence of the Irish Farmers' Association (IFA) was more marginal, at 17 per cent.

Asked to judge the performance of political parties and organisations, most were unhappy with their performance, but a high level of "don't knows" were found.

Among Yes voters polled, Fianna Fáil was the only party to emerge with a positive rating: 49 per cent were happy, 40 per cent unhappy and 12 per cent undecided. Just 38 per cent were happy with the performance of Fine Gael, while 48 per cent were unhappy and 14 per cent undecided.

Twenty-six per cent of Yes voters polled were happy with the IFA, while 37 per cent were not, and 36 per cent were undecided.

More people claimed to have voted than actually did so: 61 per cent compared with an actual turn-out of 53 per cent. Forty per cent of those polled between the ages of 18 and 24 said they voted; 52 per cent of those between 25 and 34 said they had.

The implication is that the referendum would have been beaten even more strongly if there had been a more even voting spread among age groups: women, the working class and under-35s were most strongly anti-Lisbon.