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Sunder Katwala @sundersays
, 14 tweets, 3 min read Read on Twitter
Support for a referendum on the Brexit deal has risen.

Support +11 from 31% to 42% since April 2017
Oppose -8 from 48% to 40%

So @yougov have narrow plurality (+2) in favour for first time.

Splits Remain 66-21 (+45) & Leave voters 19-66 (-47)
So campaigners for a referendum have made progress. Whether or not there could/ should be a referendum has moved from a fairly marginal hypothetical question to a more mainstream media discussion.

But another Brexit referendum in 2019 remains extremely unlikely.
The main reason is not that it is too late (though it is too late).

A Commons vote in Oct/Nov would not give enough time to legislate, then organise (designate campaigns) & hold campaign & vote March 30th 2019

But the Article 50 timetable could be extended (if UK-EU agree).
Main reason: looks all but impossible to get 326 votes in this Commons for a referendum in next 2-3 months.

About 100 MPs support a referendum now.

Adding +200 impossible without Jeremy Corbyn & Labour frontbench, yet it would remain v.difficult even with them on board too
If the government has a Withdrawal Agreement and transition deal, it is very difficult to see why that pro-referendum majority coalition in the Commons comes together as an alternative plan.

But might a majority for a referendum arise in a No Deal scenario? Also unlikely.
In a No Deal crisis, the type of majority coalition that would be needed for a referendum would require, say, 250 out of 258 Labour MPs (a stretch) and the 52 SNP/LibDem/Plaid/Green *and* even then another 25+ (mainly Conservative MPs).
If possible to try to get such a coalition (in a Brexit breakdown crisis) would its choice be a referendum? Other options.
- A transition deal/period in EEA more likely than referendum
- Labour MPs would much rather try to trigger a general election than a referendum.
Cons/DUP MPs want to avoid a General Election. In some scenarios, they may fail. (Eg, if group of Cons MPs left party over No Deal). It seems both politically & logistically (legislation) more likely there would be a crisis GE than a referendum.
* Cons MPs are not going to vote in significant numbers for a referendum if a transition deal is on (even if Lab converted)

* 'Remain v No Deal' referendum is most winnable one for Remain
- A fairly crazy referendum to hold (eg markets).
- Prob need a pro-Remain govt first!
Maybe a crisis General Election could lead to a change of govt (Lab-led), with new govt under pressure to then hold a referendum by the Autumn.

That would be a 'courageous' risk for a new PM (even if he were not a lifelong Eurosceptic). Something else (eg EEA) much more likely
So I can't really see a plausible route to a referendum (even by June/July or Autumn 2019). Most paths to a vote need Theresa May or Jeremy Corbyn to wake up one morning and think 'what we really need is a Brexit referendum'. Even with that, still quite hard to see how it happens
But if you disagree, do please let me have your scenarios for
(a) who in this Commons creates a majority vote this Autumn for a 2019 referendum
or (b) how/why a new government comes to call a referendum next year.
Its not clear public support for a referendum will rise (though it might)
- Prospect of 'no deal' is a driver of support.
- In past polls, stating 'Remain' would be an option narrows support for a referendum. So does calling it a '2nd referendum'.
If campaign did overcome all of these hurdles, so secured the legislation for a referendum, it would then need something *very* different to the successful campaign to secure the vote: a campaign to win one!

Anand Menon is persuasively sceptical…
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