Sky News data shows overwhelming support for Irish government over border issue 2 months ago

Sky News data shows overwhelming support for Irish government over border issue

A big majority.

The Irish public do not want the government to back down over the backstop, even if it risks a no-deal Brexit, a new survey has shown.

According to a Sky Data poll, eight in 10 in Ireland (79%) think the government should hold out for the legal guarantee that there will be no hard border.

The backstop is an insurance policy designed to avoid a hard border "under all circumstances" between the north and south of Ireland.

If the UK leaves the customs union and the single market, that could mean goods would have to be checked as they cross from the EU into the UK, although the wish is to keep the border frictionless through a comprehensive trade deal.

If such an agreement could not be reached, then to avoid those checks with customs posts or a hard border, the backstop would come into play.

Just 7% of the Irish public think the government should compromise more, with almost half (46%) saying it should take a harder line and 41% saying it is getting the balance about right.

Six in 10 think the Irish government has done a good job in Brexit negotiations, with just 17% saying it has done a bad job.

The survey comes as Theresa May is due to arrive in Ireland on Friday for discussions with Leo Varadkar, who is expected to inform her the Irish position on the backstop has not changed.