To secure the post-Brexit trade deal with the EU, the UK Government agreed to allow EU boats to continue fishing in UK waters for the next five and a half years. Do you think this is a good deal or a bad deal for the Scottish fishing industry? (Scot Goes Pop / Survation poll, 11th-13th January 2021):
A good deal: 21%
A bad deal: 48%
With Don't Knows excluded -
A good deal: 31%
A bad deal: 69%
Damning stuff, although what would really worry me if I was the Tories is the reaction of their own voters - 38% of whom say the deal is bad, with only 35% saying it's good. It's not hard to imagine that those negative sentiments may be particularly magnified among traditional Tory supporters in coastal communities, in which case the party will have a fight on its hands in May in its two key target seats of Banffshire & Buchan Coast and Moray. (Both are currently held by the SNP, but the Tories won the equivalent Westminster seats in both 2017 and 2019.)
Tellingly, Leave voters from the 2016 EU referendum are almost as strong in their denunciation of the deal (49% say it's bad) as Remain voters (54%). As we know, there are plenty of Leave voters who backed independence in 2014, and if those people become convinced that Scotland has been shafted by a Hard Brexit, it could be a significant turning-point.
It's probably not a coincidence that the three regions most opposed to the deal are the Highlands & Islands (55%), Mid-Scotland & Fife (54%), and the North-East (51%).
During negotiations on the post-Brexit trade deal with the EU, do you think the UK Government gave greater priority to Scottish interests or to English interests?
Scottish interests: 13%
English interests: 53%
Both equally: 24%
I don't see how the Tories can have any complaints about this result - if respondents hadn't felt very strongly about the subject, "both equally" was there as a nice, safe, neutral option, and that would have been the majority outcome. Instead, an absolute majority plumped for "English interests", so there's clearly a lot of anger out there. The only difference on this question is that Tory voters are more forgiving - 61% of them very charitably say that British negotiators were even-handed between English interests and Scottish interests. But among Leave voters, there's a slim plurality who say that English interests were prioritised. Even No voters from 2014 take the same view - 46% say "English interests", which slightly outnumbers the combined total for "Scottish interests" (5%) and "both equally" (39%).
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There are still lots more questions to come from the poll, including (belatedly) the Holyrood voting intention numbers. If you'd like to be the first to know when the results are published, you can follow me on Twitter HERE.