Strong majority want a Minister for Brexit, according to poll

Support for Fine Gael drops by 1% as Fianna Fáil and Independents see gains

Voters in a new Red C poll want Enda Kenny to appoint a specific Brexit minister. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Voters in a new Red C poll want Enda Kenny to appoint a specific Brexit minister. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

 

Nearly three quarters of Irish people believe Taoiseach Enda Kenny should create a new Ministerial role to deal with Brexit, according to the findings of a new poll.

A Red C poll published by the Sunday Business Post on Sunday shows 74 per cent of respondents said Mr Kenny should create a specific role to deal with Britain’s exit from the EU, rather than take on the duties himself.

The poll also found 56 per cent of people believe the Republic’s relationship with Britain is more important than the relationship with the EU.

The results of this poll indicates voters are keen to retain very close ties with the UK following Brexit.

The poll also assessed voters’ willingness for an Irish exit from the EU - a so-called “Irexit” - in the wake of Britain’s exit from the bloc.

A strong majority are in favour of Ireland remaining in the EU - 70 per cent - while 28 per cent believe Ireland should leave the EU if Brexit leads to a hard border with the North.

Support for Fine Gael’s has fallen slightly dropping one percentage point to 24 per cent.

Fianna Fáil’s rating for first preference vote intention, on the other hand, has risen 3 points to a total of 27 per cent.

Sinn Féin is now at 14 per cent, representing a 2 per cent drop. The margin of error is 3 per cent.

Independents are now also at 14 per cent made having made a 2-point gain in support. AAA-PBP and the Independent Alliance are both down one per cent, now at 4 per cent and 3 per cent respectively.

Elsewhere, Labour (5 per cent) and the Social Democrats (4 per cent) remain unchanged, while the Green Party (4 per cent) and Renua (1 per cent) are up by one point each.

Theresa May is due to trigger article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty by the end of March, beginning the process of exiting the EU and a two-year negotiation period.

With the State having to then accept any Brexit deal, there have been calls for the Government to put that decision to referendum.

About 56 per cent of people are in favour of such a referendum, according to the report.

The strongest support for the vote is from Sinn Féin supporters (78 per cent), followed by Fianna Fáil supporters (51 per cent), Fine Gael (43 per cent) and Labour (35 per cent).