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Europe yes or no? Déjà vu (again) Michael Marsh. Introduction What do we know about referendum voting? – It’s the government, stupid – It’s party loyaties.

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Presentation on theme: "Europe yes or no? Déjà vu (again) Michael Marsh. Introduction What do we know about referendum voting? – It’s the government, stupid – It’s party loyaties."— Presentation transcript:

1 Europe yes or no? Déjà vu (again) Michael Marsh

2 Introduction What do we know about referendum voting? – It’s the government, stupid – It’s party loyaties – It’s the issues, (but what issues?) – What do people now about the referendum anyway? When it doubt use proxies. How can we know? – Cross sections, post ref surveys: problems of recall on key variables, problems of rationalisation, problems of establishing causal sequences – Panels, better equipped to deal with sequences of change, although concerns over effects of being studied – Rolling cross sections, some panel advantages without some of the disadvantages Data here: cross section surveys, but done immediately after each referendum; questions about issues and perceptions of treaty and analyse links to vote 2

3 What changed 2008 to 2009 Opinions on underlying issues, on trust, on EU, on consequences?? – To some degree more favourable - on neutrality, trust in party and perceptions of consequences - but not entirely so, notably the unpopularity of the government; more information too The importance of such things for the voter’s decision? – Helpful changes re EU + and govt, weaker links to views on neutrality, stronger link to economic future New circumstances? Was 2009 a more rational, better informed decision? 3

4 Who changed their mind? 4

5 2008 voters in behaviour measured by recall; 2009 surveys pre- and post Lisbon2 vote 5

6 Stable /Unstable No by age 6

7 Stable /Unstable NO by Gender 7

8 Stable /Unstable NO by Occupation 8

9 Stable /Unstable NO by Party 9

10 Support for Integration and Change 10 As regards the European Union in general, which of the following comes closest to your view: “Ireland should do all it can to unite fully with the European Union” OR “Ireland should do all it can to protect its independence from the European Union”

11 Changing perceptions of the Treaty 11

12 Lisbon will erode Neutrality 12

13 Lisbon will hasten abortion 13

14 Lisbon will change business tax 14

15 Lisbon will reduce our influence in EU 15

16 Lisbon will strengthen the protection of workers' rights 16

17 Lisbon will increase unemployment 17

18 Lose Commissioner/Keep Commissioner 18

19 Lisbon will simplify decision making 19

20 Fewer “bad” consequences 20

21 21

22 The Protest Vote Rating the government’s performance 22

23 Lack of trust in party Trust own party to do/say right thing on economy, health, EU and social issues 23

24 Parties and the NO vote 24

25 Europe and the the Vote 2009 and 2008 As regards the European Union in general, which of the following comes closest to your view: “Ireland should do all it can to unite fully with the European Union” OR “Ireland should do all it can to protect its independence from the European Union” 25

26 Identity and Vote

27 Opinion on neutrality and vote Ireland should accept limitations on its neutrality so that it can be more fully involved in EU co-operation on foreign and defence policy 27

28 Subjective understanding 28

29 Knowledge Oct

30 Knowledge of EU and NO vote 2008 data taken from Millward Brown survey 30

31 Knowledge of EU and NO vote Knowledge from 2009 survey; vote in 2008 is recalled 31

32 Effect of knowledge on 2008 NO vote 32

33 Opinion change June2008-Oct

34 Economic benefits of Ratification

35 Significant influences on vote Govt voterX Opposition voterX TrustX Pro neutralityX Govt satisfactionX Pro integrationXX Irish/EuropeanX Bad consequencesXX Help Workers rightsXX CommissionX Simplify decisionsX GenderX OccupationX X means p <

36 Conclusions People THOUGHT they knew more, and arguably had less misleading views on Treaty Opinions on some underlying issues, on trust, on EU, on consequences broadly more favourable Some changes too in importance of POSITIVE things for the voter’s decision and decline of negative ones – protest vote – in importance New circumstances with respect to economy, and guarantees[?] 36

37 Some outstanding questions… When did people change their mind – somewhere between June and November How widespread was knowledge of guarantees, or does this not matter Were more positive perceptions cause of consequence of Yes vote Did the fact that Yes outspent the No side matter in altering perceptions Did the greater involvement by civil society help weaken protest vote 37


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