The public don’t believe Brexit is ‘done’

Brexit as an issue has fallen in salience in 2021 (particularly after the government secured a deal in December). Only 28% of people named it as one of the three most important issues facing the country. The combined effect of COVID-19 and the end of the transition period has pushed it off the agenda. As a result, the problems in the UK-EU trade deal have not received the attention they should have.  

Source: YouGov most important issue tracker

However, recent polling from IPSOS Mori shows that most people think that negotiations over Britain’s future relationship with the EU will continue in the next few years – only 11% believe that it will hardly change.

Christabel Cooper is a data analyst, Labour councillor in Hammersmith and Fulham and co-author of The Devastating Defeat, said, “Even though immediate concern about Brexit is not high at the moment, the public nevertheless expect that the issue will resurface and that further negotiations will be necessary. Everything we know about the problems with the UK trade deal suggests the public have got it right. Brexit is never ‘over’, but involves semi-permanent negotiations with the EU on a regular basis. So, the job of the opposition parties is to join the public in being realistic about this situation. They need to outline practical policies to fix the problems in the UK-EU trade agreement and create the basis for a close, modern relationship with the EU.”