YouGov asked an enormous sample of more than 20,000 people to choose between different Brexit options, and found that there was a 50/50 split when the choice was between May's deal and Remain, and that there was a razor-thin 52-48 margin in favour of staying in the EU when the choice was between Remain and No Deal. In other words, almost regardless of the question asked in any referendum, the public is essentially split down the middle and it's anyone's guess what would happen. The only choice that doesn't produce a virtual dead heat is between May's deal and No Deal, but as either of those options would mean leaving both the EU and the single market, that's no great comfort.
So how on earth did the Independent manage to turn this Leave-friendly poll into a headline that implies a renaissance of Europhilia in the English shires? Well, YouGov also invited respondents to make a three-way choice between Remain, the May deal, and No Deal. 46% chose Remain, and 54% chose one of the two Brexit options - meaning that the Independent's claim that the vast majority "want to remain in the EU" is the polar opposite of the truth. But because support for the two Brexit options was split down the middle, that technically means Remain's 46% was enough for a handsome lead on a first-past-the-post basis, and that's what the Independent are getting at. I've no idea what the relevance of that is supposed to be, given that there isn't a cat in hell's chance that any multi-option referendum would actually be conducted by first-past-the-post.
The Daily Record would have been proud of this one.
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